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Sun-Baked Rice Crackers
After reading a fairy tale at the Knickknack Shack, Vyrn and Lyria want to go visit the real Rosine. She is a kind old woman who treats the crew to a batch of rice crackers. When her husband was mysteriously kidnapped, she spent most of her days in sorrow. The crew offers to help look for her husband. Rosine initially refuses, but in the end, she joins the crew after some spirited persuasion from the island children.
A gentle breeze blows one sunny afternoon. Having finished one errand and in search of the next, the crew visits the Knickknack Shack.
After reading the fairytale, Rosine's Rice Cracker, they share their impressions of it.
Lyria: I'm glad it ended on a high note, but did the old lady ever get to meet up with her husband in the end?
Vyrn: No, I don't think so. They still didn't know where he is at the end of the story.
The tale tells of an old woman who was separated from her husband, but eventually rediscovers joy after suffering through many hardships.
The old woman makes rice crackers that have the power to bring happiness to all who eat them.
Sierokarte: It's based on a true story, y'know! It was published quite recently, so the woman it's based on is still going strong.
Vyrn: No way! In that case I wanna go meet her! I need to know whether or not she was reunited with her husband!
When the crew arrive at her island, an elegant, old woman surrounded by lots of children comes out to greet them.
Rosine: Why hello there! Welcome, welcome, one and all!
Vyrn: So this old lady is Rosine. I'm Vyrn! And this here's (Captain)! We travel together.
Lyria: And I'm Lyria. I'm so happy that we got to meet you, Rosine.
Rosine: What's that you say? Vernon? Well that's a nice name...
Rosine: And, uh, Lillian was it? Thank you for coming out all this way just to see me.
Vyrn: My name's Vyrn! Not Vernon!
Lyria: Um... and mine's Lyria.
Rosine: Of course, of course.
Vyrn: Yeesh... I don't think that sunk in at all.
Rosine is delighted to hear that the crew came to visit her after reading her tale, and she welcomes them warmly.
Rosine: Have some tea. And please, eat some teacakes and rice crackers.
Child 1: Granny's rice crackers are incredibly delicious!
Lyria: Wow! So this is a rice cracker! They look amazing!
Lyria: Whoa! This is incredible, Rosine!
Vyrn: These are so good! Oh rice crackers, where have you been all my life?
Rosine: Oh come now. You're all too kind.
Child 3: Granny! Lookit lookit lookit! This bug I caught, what kind of bug is it?
Rosine: Oh gosh, you found a really big guy. Let granny have a closer look.
Rosine starts earnestly examining the bug under a magnifying glass.
Rosine: It's... a little hard to see... Where's that magnifying glass I had?
Vyrn: Um, aren't you using it right now?
Rosine: Oh my. So I am. I didn't even realize. My eyes must've gotten worse again.
Vyrn: I don't think that's a vision problem...
Tightly gripping the magnifying glass and screwing up her eyes, Rosine examines the bug once more.
Rosine: Ah, I know what this guy is! That hard carapace and those large horns, yes...
Rosine: No mistaking it, this is a, erm... Let me see now...
Rosine: Now what was it called again?
Vyrn: Is it just me or is she super forgetful?
Lyria: Yeah... But she's even more adorable than the Rosine in the story!
Being around Rosine is relaxing. The conversation turns to the book, and a chance arises to ask her about her husband.
Lyria: Rosine, aren't you sad that you didn't get to meet your husband? Don't you want to see him again?
Rosine: I do. We spent many happy years together, and it's possible that he's still alive, but...
Rosine: Now, I always have the children and the islanders with me, so my loneliness left me long ago.
Her husband, a famed doctor, was kidnapped by a society calling itself the Primal Beast Research Agency, who had designs on him.
Ten years have passed since then. All alone, Rosine somehow withstood the loneliness and despair.
Rosine: But y'know... It'd be nice if I could see him one last time...
Vyrn: What kind of guy was gramps?
Rosine: Oh, he loved animals. He could really relate to them, so he was always surrounded by animals.
Rosine: As a physician he was without equal. He was obsessed with his research...
Rosine: He had all kinds of incredibly rare instruments for practicing his medicine.
Sierokarte: Hey, Rosine. Your husband didn't happen to possess a large sickle by chance, did he?
Lyria: Ah! It's Siero!
Vyrn: Siero, where did you spring out from? I thought you had vanished the moment we landed.
Rosine: Hmm? Why yes. He had a sickle, a hoe, stuff like that. But they were whisked away at the same time that he was abducted.
Vyrn: She doesn't seem disturbed by any of this at all! It's been one hardship after another for her.
Rosine: Siero, was it? Welcome, welcome to my humble home.
Sierokarte: Why, thank you for having me!
Vyrn: Back up a minute, Siero. How did you know what tools the old man had anyhow?
Sierokarte: Well now... There are stories of a wandering healer who uses esoteric medicine with a great sickle, and he can talk to animals.
Vyrn: Wait, what!
Sierokarte: When I heard these tales, I started to wonder whether they were describing Rosine's husband.
Sierokarte: It looks like I've hit the nail on the head, right?
Lyria: That's amazing Siero! This person could be your husband, Rosine!
Vyrn: And this healer, whereabouts is he now?
Sierokarte: It seems he wanders continuously and has no fixed abode where he can be found. But, I heard that he's searching for the road home.
Vyrn: Siero, you're on fire today! Hey, hey, Rosine, maybe you can meet gramps again!
Rosine: Oh my... My my my my... I'm sorry but... How should I put this...
Lyria: Hey (Captain), why don't we take Rosine to see her husband?
Lyria: I know there's a chance that this healer isn't her husband but, until we go find him, we won't know either way.
Lyria: If we take her with us on our travels, there's a good chance that our paths will cross at some point.
Choose: Let's search for him together!
- Let's search for him together!
- Let's see what Rosine thinks
Rosine: That's a very generous offer. However...Choose: Let's see what Rosine thinks
Rosine: These islanders have become like a family to me.
Rosine: I want to do all I can to repay this family of mine for giving me so many days filled with happiness, for lifting me up.
Rosine: I'm not long for this world, so what can I do to repay them? This is my own self-indulgence.
Rosine: It's not that I don't want to meet him again, but I think I'll wait patiently for him to return.
Rosine says this with a serene smile, leaving the crew members speechless.
Child 1: Hey gram!
Child 2: Granny, we know that sometimes you get sad.
Rosine: My my my... What are you saying, all of a sudden?
Child 2: I want granny to be happy all the time like we are. I don't want you to be lonely.
Child 3: Deep down, you want to see grandpa again, don't you granny?
Child 2: And I bet grandpa also totally wants to see you again, granny! So, go find him!
Rosine: Oh children...
Rosine is at a loss for words at this unexpected development. The persuasive words of the children sway her stubborn heart.
Rosine finally speaks.
Rosine: Perhaps you littl'uns are older and wiser than you seem...
Lyria: It's because they all love you so much, Rosine!
Rosine: Well, if you put it like that, I don't have much of a choice do I...
Rosine: May I take back what I said earlier about your invitation, (Captain)?
Vyrn: Well of course you can! Just say the word! Right, (Captain)?
Lyria: We'll find your husband, together! I'm sure we will!
Rosine: Lillian, Vernon, and (Captain). Thank you for having me aboard.
Vyrn: Hey! Who's Vernon!
Lyria: Well, Lillian is close enough to Lyria.
Rosine: Very well. Look after my place while I'm away, kids. You all play nice now. And don't wander off to anywhere dangerous.
Child 1: You don't need to worry about us! Take care of yourself too, granny!
Rosine joins the crew on their travels in hopes that they cross paths with her husband.
And hence a new chapter of Rosine's Rice Crackers begins to unfold.
Walking the Bright Path
The crew receives a tip about an old man who matches the description of Rosine's husband. They arrive at a desolate mountainside in hopes of catching up to him but find no signs of life. The crew is about to head back when a monster gets the drop on them. Without a hint of fear, Rosine offers the monster a rice cracker, distracting it long enough for the crew to get the upper hand.
Lyria: How's your back today, granny? Does it hurt?
Rosine: My back and my knees are both springy. It's very kind of you to ask, Lyria.
Mindful of Rosine's age, the crew moves steadily through a mountain pass that has no trace of humans or monsters.
The crew clings to the possibility that the wandering healer could be Rosine's husband but...
Vyrn: I fear the wanderer that Siero told us about may have already moved on to some place else.
Vyrn: After all that, we came up with nothing! I'm not complaining about the lack of monsters, though.
Lyria: Vyrn, you jinxed us! Monsters!
Vyrn: Hey! I never said I wanted monsters to come!
Rosine: Oh my... Perhaps it's just hungry?
Rosine: Hunger really is an awful thing you know.
Lyria: Granny, we're in great danger!
Rosine: I'm sorry, but I simply can't neglect a starving child.
Vyrn: If it's starving then don't you realize that we're what's on the menu?
Rosine: How about some rice crackers instead?
Vyrn: It's eating them!
Vyrn: You've adopted the monster as your grandchild.
Lyria: Not even monsters can resist granny's rice crackers !
Vyrn: All right! We can flank the monsters while they're chowin' down on the rice crackers!
Walking the Bright Path: Scene 2
The crew enjoys a lighthearted moment with Rosine while she makes rice crackers aboard the Grandcypher. Although she hasn't spent much time with the crew yet, she reveals the true reason why she's traveling with them. Rosine believes that if she shows her villagers back home how much she has done on her travels, it will give her villagers a drive of their own. (Captain) and crew, moved by Rosine's passion, head towards the village.
Rosine: Phew. There we go.
Io: That smells so good!
Vyrn: Hey there Rosine, you making rice crackers again?
Rosine: They'll be done baking very soon. They might even be ready now, actually.
The crew returned to the airship after repelling the monsters. Rosine bakes rice crackers while they search for their next lead,
Rosine: I've carefully memorized which flavors all of you like.
Rosine: The brown sugar ones are for Rackam, Io likes the wasabi flavored ones, and Lyria prefers the chili ones.
Lyria: Chili? What! But I can't handle spicy food!
Io: What's wasabi? Never heard of that one!
Rackam: Brown sugar, huh? Well, I don't exactly hate brown sugar, but...
Vyrn: You've got it totally wrong! How did you get it so mixed up!
Rosine: Oh dear, oh dear. I'm so sorry. I've been so forgetful as of late...
Vyrn: Well, that's part of what makes her so lovable, I guess.
Rosine: Oh well. I've made lots of them, so everyone can just pick the ones they like.
The crew enjoys a brief moment of respite before they reach their next destination.
Rackam: But it's even tougher than I thought to trace a lead on the old man.
Vyrn: I hear you. It seems granny's reunion with grandpa is still a ways off.
Rosine: Could I have your attention for a minute, everyone?
Rosine composes herself and fixes her gaze on the gathered crew. A strange feeling of tension fills the air.
Lyria: What's the matter?
Rosine: Of course, it's true that I would like to see my husband again.
Rosine: And yet at the same time, there was something I wanted everyone on that island to know.
Lyria: Something you wanted them to know?
Rosine: Yes. That even an old lady like me can go gallivanting off across the skydom.
Vyrn: What are you saying exactly?
Rosine: Everyone on that island has so much to give that they've got kindness to spare.
Rosine: On the other hand, they haven't had much contact with the outside world. They're somewhat sheltered, got no gumption.
Rosine: Life isn't all smooth-sailing. And when you do encounter hardship, that's exactly what gives you the courage to overcome it.
Rosine: I want them to have a broad outlook on life and not just be frightened of things they haven't encountered before.
Vyrn: I get it. If you show them how much you've done on your travels, that will give them a drive of their own. Have I got the right idea?
Rosine: Hohoho... Yes, that's exactly it. So I'm indebted to all of you.
Rosine: Yes. It's because all of you were there for me that I was able to go off on my adventure like this.
Rosine: (Captain), everyone. Thank you so much for all you've done for me.
Rosine: If there's ever anything that I need your help with, I know that I can depend on you. I'm so thankful for that.
Lyria: No worries!
Rackam: Well, I guess we can fly over and show our faces at the island from time to time.
Walking the Bright Path: Scene 3
In the end, the crew is unable to track down a lead on the old man. The despondent crew apologizes to Rosine but she lifts their spirits saying that all of their efforts have made her happy. Rosine resolves to follow the crew, as their bonds will surely continue to grow.
Rackam: The trail's gone cold again.
With a promising new lead in hand, the crew had once again set out on the trail of the wandering healer.
But they were too late, as the wanderer had already set out on his next journey.
Vyrn: I'm sorry, granny. And this lead seemed really promising.
Rosine: Come now, please don't pull that gloomy face, Vernon. The same goes for the rest of you.
Rosine: You don't need to apologize. After all, look how happy I am right now.
Rackam: What are you happy about?
Rosine: I'm so glad for everything that you've done for me.
Rosine: And I've got so many keepsakes of my journey. I can take them back to the island and share them with everybody.
Rosine: If we'd found my husband right away, then my quest would already be over, right?
Vyrn: Yeah, you're right! This means that you can keep on traveling with us! Yay!
Rosine: Hehe... This game of cat and mouse with my husband is gonna continue for a while longer it seems.
Rackam: Hahaha! You're quite something, granny!
Vyrn: One last thing. How long are you gonna keep calling me Vernon?
Taking these thoughts to heart, the crew plots a course for their new journey.
But is there light waiting for them at the end of the tunnel, or ever-lurking darkness?
Regardless of what awaits them at journey's end, a light shines brightly on the way forward.
Scythes and Crackers
Rosine mistakes the scythe-wielding Vaseraga to be her long-lost husband. The misunderstanding is quickly dispelled, but all is not as meets the eye as Vaseraga might in fact be connected to her husband through an intricate web of mystery.
One fine day on the Grandcypher, a most curious scene begins to unfold.
Rosine: Oh my... My, my, my... Could it be? Is that you, dear?
It seems Rosine—who joined (Captain)'s crew in hopes of finding her kidnapped husband—has mistaken the scythe-wielding Vaseraga for her long-lost spouse.
Suspecting that he does not recognize her, she tries to remind him.
Rosine: Dearest... it's me, your wife Rosine.
Though Vaseraga finds this case of mistaken identity to be absurd, the sincerity in Rosine's eyes leaves him at a loss for words.
Before he can respond, Vyrn shouts out in astonishment.
Vyrn: Whoa! Spike is Granny's husband!
Lyria: What! Vaseraga? Husband! I always imagined Rosine's husband to be a little older...
Vaseraga: Calm down. Nobody's anyone's husband.
Vaseraga: Ma'am. I'm sorry, but I'm not who you think I am.
Vaseraga: I don't know what gave you the idea, but I'm not your husband.
Rosine: Oh my...
Rosine: Oh my! Why yes, you're right!
Lyria: Whew! Okay, that makes more sense. You had me going for a second there!
Vyrn: Now that you mention it, you said your husband had a big sickle, right? I guess it looks a lot like Spike's scythe.
Rosine: Oh, I'm so very sorry. My eyes just keep getting worse these days. Age seems to be catching up to me.
Rosine rubs her eyes gently. A tear rolls down her cheek.
Rosine: Vaseraga, was it? A pleasure to meet you. I hope you'll forgive an old lady her mistake.
Vaseraga: Sure... (What's an elderly woman like her doing on a skyfaring crew?)
Rosine: Well then, who's up for some tea? I'll be back in just a minute.
With the misunderstanding behind her, Rosine eases herself to her feet and gives a warm smile.
A flicker of sorrow can be seen in her eyes, if only for a moment.
Vyrn: All right, it's snackin' time! We'll help you get the kettle ready! C'mon, (Captain)!
Lyria: You're in for a treat, Vaseraga. Rosine's crackers are out of this world!
Vaseraga: That good, huh? I'm looking forward to it.
Teatime comes and goes, and everyone pitches in to help clean up. Rosine reaches to pick up a metal tray.
Rosine: Off this goes to the—
Vaseraga: I'll handle that. Don't strain yourself.
Seeing Rosine try to lift the heavy tray of teacups and saucers, Vaseraga offers a helping hand.
Rosine: Hm? Vaserogan! My, my, my. What a kind young man you are.
Vaseraga: What? No, my name is—
Rosine: Thank you so very much. Gentlemen are such rare sights these days.
Once again at a loss for words, Vaseraga takes the tray.
Vaseraga: What's so funny?
Rosine: I was just reminded of my husband; we would clean up together just like this. Those were the good old days...
Vaseraga: I see.
Rosine: Ohh, he loved rice crackers with a passion.
Rosine: And he...
Rosine: Umm, he...
Rosine: What was I trying to say, again?
Rosine: By the way, did you have your fill of crackers, dearie?
Rosine beams with satisfaction at Vaseraga's reply.
Rosine: Ah yes, now I remember. He just loved those sweet, salty crackers.
Rosine: You can't imagine the amount of baking trays that had to be cleaned once he was through. Hohoho. We would wash the mountain of trays together.
Vaseraga: I see.
Rosine: Ah, but all this talk must be such a bore to you, Vaserogan. I'm sorry I ramble on sometimes.
Vaseraga: No need for apologies. You said this man looked like me. Could you tell me more about him?
Vaseraga: I'll admit you've gotten me curious.
Rosine: Oh, my, my, my! Such a tender heart you have, Vaserogan.
Rosine: Well, if you want to indulge an old woman her stories, you'll have it.
Rosine begins to
reminisce of the days she spent with her husband.
She tells of how he was a famously skilled doctor, of how his unique brand of medicine employed a sickle and a hoe, and of how he could communicate with animals.
He was captured by a secret organization, but according to information from Sierokarte, it seems he has since escaped and is now searching for a way home.
Rosine: There's no way to know for sure if those rumors are true.
Rosine: But I can feel it. I know that we'll be together again, soon.
Rosine: Hoho. Or one can hope, at least.
As Vaseraga listens to Rosine, his expression grows solemn.
Vaseraga: (Could the organization be behind this kidnapping? Intelligence states they've been gathering pawns through any means necessary.)
Vaseraga: (But there was word of someone who organized a rebellion and escaped... Could it be... Could he be that man?)
Vaseraga: (No, I can't jump to conclusions. It's more likely that these two men are completely unrelated.)
Vaseraga: (However, if this woman's husband and that man really are one and the same, I'll be glad we're on the same side.)
Vaseraga: (But if he's not...)
Vaserara looks on at Rosine's serene expression.
Rosine: My, my, what fine weather we have today.
Vaseraga: (An innocent, frail woman has been burdened with such bitter hardship.)
As if to clear his mind, Vaseraga quietly shuts his eyes.
Vaseraga: (My scythe I wield for justice, and justice alone.)
Rosine: Oh dear. Vaserogan, are you all right? You don't look too well.
Vaseraga: Ma'am. Stop calling me that. My name is Vaseraga.
Rosine: Of course, of course. I understand, Vaserogan.
Vaseraga: I told you, stop calling me that.
Unaware of the flurry of thoughts running through Vaseraga's mind, Rosine smiles on.
Vaseraga concedes to stay on guard, but to pry no further into the matter.
He resigns himself to the fact that whatever burden this elderly woman carries, it is out of his control.
Vaseraga: I enjoyed the crackers. I hope you'll let me try them again someday.
Rosine: Why, of course. Just say the word and I'll bake 'em up in a jiffy.