An Unchanging Smile
In order to secure Gawain a seat at the union conference, the crew gathers signatures from Dalmore citizens. As they walk around, they are approached by a pair of siblings that Florence and Gawain had trained with the day before. The children express their desire to be defenders of the country, exactly like Florence and Gawain. Florence offers words of encouragement, bringing a smile to Gawain's face as he recalls the way she had done the same for him in the past.
At the sudden behest of an acquaintance, (Captain) and company travel to the Duchy of Dalmore.
Florence: Hello, (Captain). I'm sorry I haven't kept in touch.
Florence—head of Dalmore's sorcerers and older sister of the knight Gawain—has asked for the crew's help once more.
In the past, Florence approached the skyfarers while Gawain was on a journey to remove a curse—one she had placed.
She cast it in hopes of changing Gawain for the better. Gawain, through his journey with (Captain), learned the importance of kindness, and the curse was lifted.
Florence parted with the crew after the incident that freed him, content to leave Gawain in their capable hands for the time being.
She explains the current issue at hand: Dalmore is soon to meet with Wales and Feendrache to discuss the forming of an alliance.
For the union conference to go well, Gawain's presence will be needed. This is why Florence has come to collect him.
However, upon returning to Dalmore, the group finds that Gawain's past transgressions against his people are not so easily forgiven.
Archduke Hyland: I'm sorry, but I won't concede to any more than this. If he cannot do what I've asked in time and regain the trust of the people, then he will not join the talks.
Gawain: All I have to do is regain the trust of the people? Very well. I accept this task.
Gawain: But as Florence pointed out, I am not sure how I'll prove that I've succeeded. Trust is not a tangible object I can return with, after all.
Gawain: I ask that you be as clear about the conditions for success as you were with the deadline.
Archduke Hyland: All right. Then how about this? Gather the signatures of the citizens who will support you and return with that list.
Archduke Hyland: So long as you obtain those signatures, you shall be guaranteed a chair at the conference.
Gawain: It will. For the sake of Dalmore, I won't fail.
In order to convince people to sign for them, the crew head into town and take on requests. After a while, they are met with some success.
Vyrn: All right! We're startin' to get a few signatures!
Lyria: People are coming up to us more often compared to before.
Lyria: But a majority of the town still seems pretty afraid of Gawain...
Vyrn: Yeah, everyone with requests would rather go to Florence or (Captain) than talk to Gawain directly, huh?
Gawain: Can't expect them to come around so quickly. They probably see the old prideful commander when they look at me.
Lyria: Hmm... From the way they were acting, they looked like they wanted to speak to you. But you're so famous, maybe they were too nervous to?
Vyrn: Ain't Florence just as famous as he is, bein' the number one magic hotshot in the country and all? Nobody seems scared of her.
Gawain: That's because she's Florence. She's an everyday sight around here.
Gawain interrupts with an explanation.
Gawain: I don't think there's a single citizen who doesn't know her face by now. She's got a habit of walking around town when she's free and chatting with anyone she runs into.
Gawain: People appreciate that she keeps herself out of the castle and spends time with them as equals.
Gawain: Most importantly... She's a kind person, unlike me. Why would anyone be terrified of her?
Hearing the self-deprecation, (Captain) can't help but interject.
Choose: You're kind too, Gawain.
- You're kind too, Gawain.
- You really love your sister, don't you?
Lyria: That's right! You're just as nice as Florence is!
Lyria: Actually, don't you guys think Gawain resembles her a little bit?
Gawain: Huh? Don't kid yourself! I'm nothing like her!
Vyrn: That's right, Lyria. Look at him freak out and yell over a compliment. Bet you wouldn't see Florence do that!Choose: You really love your sister, don't you?
Gawain: What? I'm just stating what I've observed, that's all.
Lyria: It's okay, Gawain. You don't have to be shy about it! I love Katalina a whole lot, and I'm proud to say it!
Vyrn: Haha, that's right! You should be more honest like Lyria!Continue 1
Gawain: Cut it out! And you, Captain! Quit grinning like that!
Gawain: Sheesh... The point is, everyone in Dalmore knows that Florence is the sympathetic and compassionate type.
As soon as Gawain finishes, the group looks over to see Florence chatting lightheartedly with townspeople.
Lyria: I guess when we first met her, she had a mask on, so she looked kind of scary...
Lyria: But after being with her for a while, I can tell she's a really warm and friendly person!
Vyrn: She only cursed you to make sure His Majesty spared your life too.
Vyrn: With a big sis like that, you oughta show a little more appreciation! Right, (Captain)?
Gawain: You don't need to tell me. I know that better than anyone else.
Florence: I'm sorry to keep you all waiting! I have acquired our next request. Shall we be on our way?
Gawain: Sure, let's go. Come on, (Captain). That's enough idle chatter.
Time passes as the group completes one request and moves on to look for the next.
As they search, a pair of young children come rushing toward Florence.
Sister: There you are! Florence! Gawain!
Brother: Sorry to bug you, but can we talk for a second?
Florence: Ah, the two children we trained with earlier. Hello again.
Florence smiles kindly after recognizing the two newcomers.
Lyria: Oh! The ones who requested to learn magic and swordplay!
Vyrn: Gawain sure didn't hold back, huh? Surprised to see you show up again after that beat down!
Florence: Haha, it was a valiant effort to stand against him. What can we do for you, young knights?
Brother: We wanted to thank you again. Our mom baked some cookies, so we brought some over.
Brother: Hope you like them!
Nervously presenting a neatly wrapped package, the boy holds it up to Florence.
Florence: They look wonderful. Thank you very much. I can't wait to try them.
Sister: Is it okay if you help me study more magic sometime?
Sister: I wanna keep practicing so I can be a cool sorceress like you one day!
Brother: Hey, that's not fair! I wanna train too! And when I grow up I'll be a hero just like Gawain!
Florence: Now, now. It's good the both of you are so determined.
Florence settles the children down with a gentle smile.
Florence: We'd be happy to help you if you'd have us. Call whenever you like.
Gawain: Should you really promise that so easily? You know we're both busy people.
Gawain: And you, kid. Don't grow up like me. You'll make your parents cry with a goal like that.
Gawain: I'm sure they've told you the stories about me already.
Hearing Gawain's harsh rebuke, the boy goes quiet.
Then he raises his head and meets Gawain's gaze without hesitation.
Brother: Mom and Dad did tell me you were scary.
Brother: But I know now that isn't true! You're super nice, and strong, and cool, and I definitely wanna be like you someday!
Brother: I know I'm still super weak, but you didn't hold back when we trained! You took me seriously!
Brother: That's why I know you actually care! If I was more like you, my parents would be proud of me!
The boy's vehement statement has Gawain blinking in bewilderment. After a moment, he heaves a sigh.
Gawain: I just don't understand children...
Florence: Hehe, I believe you can simply take his words at face value—
Florence: Proof that others are starting to believe in your reform and genuine wish to aid your country.
Florence crouches down to meet the children at eye level.
Florence: My brother and I will honor the respect you show and continue to protect this country.
Florence: While we do so, know that we eagerly await the day that you both join us in our duty.
Siblings: Yes, Ma'am!
Florence: A fitting response. You will become a fine knight, and you a fine sorceress.
Gawain: Mom and Dad were so cool today...
Gawain: I want to hurry up and get strong too! Then I'll protect our home just like them!
Florence: Hehe, there's no need to rush. I know you'll become this country's best knight one day.
Florence: And I'll become a sorceress powerful enough to watch your back! So let's work hard together.
Gawain: Heh. She hasn't changed a bit.
Gawain sure looks happy about something.
Vyrn: Was he mutterin' about Florence? Makes me wonder what they were like as kids...
The captain, Lyria, and Vyrn whisper among themselves as they observe the rare expression on Gawain's face.
Together they imagine what knight and sorceress were like as young children in a distant past.
The Inherited Will of a Protector
(Captain) and crew visit Florence, having been in the area to finish a request. Florence explains that there have been sightings nearby of monsters driven wild by the hybrid attack, and that she needs to patrol around. Wishing to entertain the visiting crew as well, she decides to bring them along her patrol and give them a tour of Dalmore.
A few weeks have passed since the excitement surrounding the union conference between Dalmore, Wales, and Feendrache.
(Captain) and crew come with Gawain to Dalmore once more to complete a request and pay a visit to Florence while they are there.
Florence: Yes, please increase patrols around areas indicated by eyewitness reports.
Florence: Especially the sections close to town. It would not do to have any casualties.
Florence: I shall also make my own rounds around town. In the meantime, let the others know.
As Florence watches them go, she spots the crew approaching nearby.
Florence: Oh! If it isn't Gawain and the crew!
Florence: Welcome back to Dalmore. I'm sorry I didn't take notice of you earlier. Did you have business with me?
Gawain: No, we were just in the area finishing up a request. Figured we'd stop by, but it looks like you're busy.
Florence: Busy as I may be, I am always pleased to see you.
Vyrn: Is somethin' up? Sounded like you got monster problems.
Florence: It seems that the excitement during the alliance talks has agitated a group of them.
Florence: There are no casualties as of yet, but it would not do to let our guards down. I've decided to increase patrols close to town.
Florence: In fact, I was about to set off on my own patrol soon, but...
Trailing off, Florence hesitantly considers what to say next.
Choose: Don't worry about us. Go ahead.
- Don't worry about us. Go ahead.
- How about we help?
Florence: It would not do for me to be so rude, especially when I have yet to thank you for your assistance in defending Dalmore.
Gawain: Getting in your way won't do anyone any favors though.
Florence: Be that as it may...Choose: How about we help?
Florence: I wouldn't dream of forcing you to assist when you've come as a visitor.
Florence: Besides, my task is nothing more strenuous than strolling through town and checking in with the citizens.Continue 1
Suddenly a smile lights up Florence's face as an idea comes to mind.
Florence: I know! Why don't I take you all on a tour of Dalmore?
Florence: This way I can both patrol as well as keep you company. Two birds with one stone, as they say.
Vyrn: A tour, huh? Now that I think about it, we didn't get to see much of the land last time we came.
Florence: Which is why I'd like to offer you this opportunity.
Florence: Dalmore may not be a country for tourism, but at the very least, Gawain and I know the town quite well. There are many a tale we could tell about our life here.
Florence's suggestion has (Captain), Lyria, and Vyrn perking up in excitement.
Lyria: We'd love to hear more about you two! Right, (Captain)?
Vyrn: Gawain's not much for swapping tales. We definitely don't wanna miss this!
Florence: Hehe, I am relieved to see your interest. Shall we then, Gawain?
Gawain: I'm not interested in tagging along. Tell them whatever you like. Just don't drag me into this.
Florence: So quick to run away... Are you sure?
Florence: If you're not around, I might end up sharing a few things you might prefer to keep undisclosed.
Gawain: What? What do you intend to tell them?
Florence: Hehe, I wonder. (Captain), is there anything in particular you'd like to hear about Gawain?
Playing along with Florence's banter, (Captain) gives a mischievous smile.
Choose: His most embarrassing moment.
- His most embarrassing moment.
- His most adorable moment.
Florence: Very well. That would be the night that Gawain filled himself with apples and went to bed.
Florence: I happened to wake up in the middle of the night, and when I looked over to his bed, he was wrapped in his blankets and looking close to tears—
Gawain: Hey! Are you trying to scare them? Where are you going with this story anyway?Choose: His most adorable moment.
Florence: Very well. That would be the first time Gawain gifted me a birthday present.
Florence: He had just started learning how to write, you see. Through great effort he wrote me a letter—
Gawain: Hey! You better not tell them what was written inside!Continue 2
Gawain: Good grief... All right. I get it. I'll come with you and make sure you cease these ridiculous tales.
Florence: Hehe, you should have just agreed in the beginning like a good boy.
Vyrn: Haha, guess even a guy like Gawain can't win against his big sis!
Lyria: It's nice to see that Gawain has a cute side too!
Gawain: Shut up! Are we going or not? We don't have all day!
Lyria: Ah! Wait for us, Gawaaain!
Florence: My, my, always with the sulking. We should follow before he actually does leave us behind.
As Gawain stomps away, the group hurries after—
Eagerness filling their every step for the tour that awaits.
The Inherited Will of a Protector: Scene 2
Florence shares memories of her family, as well as her time with Lamorak, while the group walks around town. Her affection for her homeland is clear through the fond recollections, and the crew understands more than before how strong her wish to protect Dalmore is.
(Captain) and the crew walk through Dalmore with Florence as their guide.
For every store they pass by, Florence cheerfully shares a detail or two.
Florence: Mother and I would often stop by this cafe after training. The herb tea was my go-to choice.
Florence: The refreshing taste always seemed to make my exhaustion fade away... And though you might find it hard to believe, a fairy also once resided here.
Lyria: A fairy? What do you mean?
Lyria's question prompts Florence to close her eyes in remembrance.
Florence: For a reason unbeknownst to me, I would find a packet of herb tea from this cafe placed on my pillow once a week.
Florence: When I asked my mother about it, she replied that it was a gift from a fairy that loved me very much, and that I should enjoy it with appreciation in my heart.
Florence: Thus I learned about the cafe fairy. Once I grew older however, I never heard from my mysterious benefactor again.
Gawain: Sigh... About that.
Gawain, looking slightly conflicted, speaks up.
Gawain: Figure it's about time I let the cat out of the bag: your tea-bearing fairy was actually our father.
Vyrn: Huh? Your old man was the culprit?
Gawain: Yeah, he was worried about Florence since she was training night and day.
Gawain: But he knew that she'd keep at it no matter what he said, so he figured the least he could do was leave her something to recharge with.
Florence: I see... That would explain why I no longer received any once he passed away.
Gawain: I made him a promise between men not to tell you but...
Gawain: A promise like that is only meant to last so long. I have to say, I never expected you to still believe in that fairytale.
Florence: Hehe, it's nice to finally learn the truth. I'll have to thank him the next time I visit his resting place.
Florence: That tailor's shop over there makes the uniforms for the court sorcerers.
Florence: I remember how happy my mother was when she first joined the court and received her uniform here.
Lyria: You started training with your mother when you were little, right?
Florence: I did. At first it was just the two of us, then Lamorak joined us later on.
Florence: Those were some of the happiest days of my life... I can still recall our escapades with vivid clarity.
Florence: I have you now! Haaah!
Florence shouts, and a sharp whirlwind leaves her fingertips, wrapping around the small animal.
With its feet trapped, the rabbit is unable to move any further. Applause breaks out at the success of her magic.
Morgause: Well done, Florence. Your aim has improved significantly. Perhaps you're ready to tackle multi-target spells next.
Florence: Really? Yes!
Florence: Hehe, did you hear that, Lamorak? As your senior, I won't let you get ahead of me!
Lamorak: Yeah, I saw it! No doubt about it—I'm not catching up to you anytime soon!
Lamorak: Big Sis Flo for the win!
Florence: Seriously? I can never tell if you're making fun of me or actually being nice...
Morgause: All right, it's your turn now, Lamorak.
Lamorak: Okeydokey, I've got this! One, two—
Lamorak: Gawain! That was my target! What'd you do that for?
Gawain: Heh! That's what you get for using slow, boring magic.
Gawain: If you want to hunt, then a quick slice at the back of its legs will do.
Lamorak: You think so? I feel like magic is easier than running wild with a blade. You can get more creative too!
Gawain: Who cares about that? I bet you I can take down more targets than you.
Lamorak: Oh? Them's fighting words, Gawain.
Lamorak: How about this? Whoever can catch the most rabbits by sundown is the better hunter!
Gawain: Fine by me! Hope you're ready to lose!
Florence: Good grief, those two are goofing off again. Now we'll never get today's training done.
Florence: Doesn't Gawain have practice with the knights? Commander Pete will have his head if he's not there.
Morgause: I suppose Gawain does have prior engagements... But a contest with Lamorak might do him more good than standard training.
Morgause: I'll go let Pete know he'll be occupied. Florence, do go easy on your brother.
Florence: I know, Mother. Someone has to spoil him in Father's place.
Morgause: Thank you, my child. For now, let us take a break as well. I'll go prepare some tea.
Vyrn: So Gawain and Lamorak had a bit of a rivalry, huh?
Florence: They did. I would assume that being close in age and sharing similar circumstances brought them together.
Florence: At any rate, they were always competing over something or another—seeing who could eliminate the most monsters, eat the most of Mother's cooking...
Florence: Truly, they were the best of friends.
Gawain: We weren't competing for fun. I just couldn't stand his attitude and wanted to teach him a lesson.
Florence: Really? At least from my perspective, you enjoyed yourself greatly each time you came to interrupt our training.
Florence: Perhaps you felt a little lonely while Lamorak and I were busy with our magic studies.
Florence: Mother thought as much, anyway. "Gawain's come to play with Lamorak again," she'd always say with a laugh.
Vyrn: No use tryin' to cover up the truth! You guys had a blast, plain as day!
Lyria: Right? Look at how Florence is smiling!
Florence: I suppose I can't help myself. Those days gone by are part of why I so strongly wish to protect Dalmore.
Seeing Florence at peace, (Captain) can't help but make a remark.
Choose: You really love Dalmore, don't you?
- You really love Dalmore, don't you?
- Dalmore's filled with good memories, huh?
Florence: I do. This is my home, filled with treasured memories, as well as the land my mother and father spent their lives protecting.
Florence: It is my sincere wish to do the same and protect the happiness of those who live here with me.Choose: Dalmore's filled with good memories, huh?
Florence: It is indeed. And none of those memories would exist without Dalmore as the stage.
Florence: I'm sure I'm not the only one who feels the same. That is why I wish to protect this country with all I have.Continue 1
(Captain) and company once again sense the deep commitment Florence has to her homeland.
As quickly as the moment comes, however, Florence beckons the crew to follow her to their next destination.
The Inherited Will of a Protector: Scene 3
The tour comes to an abrupt halt as the parents of the children Florence and Gawain trained with before come running toward the group. They explain that the siblings ran off to fight monsters, then guide the group to the nearby forest. Florence and crew save the children in the nick of time, and the happy family returns home together. Watching them leave, Florence and Gawain reaffirm their desire to keep Dalmore safe.
A little while after the sun reaches its zenith, Florence pauses for a moment to breathe.
Florence: Phew... It might be time for a break, I think.
Florence: I know just the place: a restaurant my family once frequented. They serve a highly—
Before she can finish, two figures frantically slide into view.
???: Madam Florence! Sir Gawain! Have you seen our children?
???: You trained with them before! A little boy and a little girl! Do you remember?
Florence: Yes? If you're speaking of them... I'm afraid I haven't seen them at all today. What's wrong?
Father: They ran out of the house as soon as they heard the knights and sorcerers were going to drive away monsters near town.
Mother: The two of us aren't enough to protect them if we run into any monsters... Please, could you help us find them?
Trembling, the parents beg Florence to find their children.
Florence responds to their desperate request with an immediate nod.
Florence: I understand the situation. Rest easy, for we shall set out posthaste.
Florence: This is a race against time we cannot lose. (Captain), can I count on your aid?
Choose: Of course.
- Of course.
- Let's hurry!
Gawain: That's what I thought you'd say.Choose: Let's hurry!
Gawain: Yeah, the less time we spend talking, the faster we can locate them.Continue 1
Gawain: You two. Which direction did they leave in? We'll bring them back, so spit it out.
Father: O-okay! They went this way—toward the forest outside town!
The group sets off with the parents quickly scrambling to guide Gawain and company.
Frenzied Monster: ...!
Sister: Brother, I'm scared...
Brother: Hey, come on! We said we'd take out these monsters and protect Dalmore, didn't we?
Despite his bravado, the wooden sword in the boy's hands quivers.
Brother: I know I can be a real knight that defends our home!
Frenzied Monster: ...!
The monster growls and lunges at the boy.
Florence: I'm afraid that's not your role yet. You should leave the defending to the adults.
Brother: Huh? Florence?
Florence appears from behind, her spell trapping the monster a hair's breadth away from the boy.
Florence: Its movements are sealed. Gawain, (Captain), can you take care of this?
Frenzied Monster: ...!
A swift strike from (Captain) and Gawain quickly dispatches the monster.
With tears of relief welling in their eyes, the worried parents dash for their children.
Mother: I'm so glad you're both okay... But do you have any idea how much you made us worry?
Father: Madam Florence, Sir Gawain, (Captain)... I don't know how we can ever thank you...
Florence: There is no need. Seeing your children safe and sound is the best reward we could ask for.
Florence smiles kindly at the parents, but in the next moment, her smile turns into a stern frown as she approaches the children.
Florence: As for you two, however, I must admit I am disappointed.
Florence: If your parents hadn't noticed you were gone, or if we had arrived any later, you both might have perished.
Florence: Do you have any idea how devastating that would have been for your parents?
Florence: As much as your hearts were in the right place, you cannot protect this country if you cannot care for those close to you first.
The children listen carefully, then burst into tears once she finishes speaking.
Sister: Yes, Florence... We're really sorry!
Brother: Mom... Dad... We're sorry for making you worry!
Florence: I'm glad to see you take my words to heart. But I do understand where you are coming from.
Florence lowers herself to meet the children at eye level.
Florence: When we were young, Gawain and I desperately wanted to do whatever we could to help our parents protect this country.
Florence: But our parents never let us near the frontlines of any conflict.
Florence: They kept us safe, which allowed us to focus on our training and become strong enough to one day protect in their place.
Florence: I would ask you to do the same—take your time and forge yourselves into capable defenders.
Florence: While you do so, I promise the adults can keep Dalmore safe until the day you can join our ranks.
Gawain: I promise the same. We won't let any harm come to our home.
Gawain follows his sister's vow with a solemn one of his own.
Gawain: You have nothing to worry about. I am not weak, and neither is Florence.
Gawain: But I'm sure you both know that already. You want to be like us one day, right? Can you trust us to hold the fort until then?
Florence: Thank you. Remember, don't be in such a hurry to grow up.
Hearing the children's genuine response, Florence and Gawain give them gentle pats on the head.
Brother: Florence! Gawain! (Captain)! Thank you very much!
Sister: We'll do our best with training from now on!
The brother and sister wave energetically as their parents shoo them back toward town.
Brother: Care for those close to us, huh? All right, I'm gonna do what Gawain did and help everyone around town!
Brother: Mom, when we get home, I'll help you clean!
Mother: Oh? That would be a great help. I hope you're ready for some hard work.
Sister: Let me help too! I'll study the binding magic Florence taught me after!
Father: That's the spirit. We should ask the sorcerers to help tutor you at some point, eh?
As the family walks into the distance, Florence and Gawain observe them quietly.
Florence: A heartwarming sight—one I won't ever let fall to harm.
Florence: We still have a lot of work to do in the meantime.
Gawain: Yeah. We do.
The siblings' exchange is charged with conviction.
Their resolve to keep their homeland safe burns brighter than ever.