Scenario:Macula Marius - A Watchful Guardian
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A Watchful Guardian
Nightmares of past events disturb Macula Marius in her sleep. During the War, she took lives from both primal beasts and skydwellers alike in order to protect nature from destruction. However, it was a painful endeavor that haunts her to this day. Concerned for her well-being, (Captain) and the crew decide to take her along on a journey.
Macula Marius: Ngh... Agh...
A nightmare of the past troubles Marius's sleep.
During the War, nature suffered at the hands of skydwellers, astrals, and primal beasts alike as a result of their battles.
Disheartened by those who would destroy nature's beauty to serve their own ambitions, Marius delivered icy judgment to those who failed her.
However, the act of taking lives proved to be far too painful for Marius.
Macula Marius: Protect Mother Nature... by punishing those who would harm her? What a joke...
Macula Marius: We are all part of Mother Nature. Punishing and killing those who would harm her is no different than killing a part of nature herself...
Macula Marius: How senseless... Am I no different than the skydwellers in the end?
Macula Marius: No, I must take action... If left to roam free, they will ravage what little nature remains... Yet, I...
Macula Marius: Wait. Perhaps there is still a way for them to coexist with nature. Surely...
During the events of the War, Marius had taken a neutral stance, choosing to protect nature and the skydwellers from destruction rather than fight.
However, centuries after the events of the War, skydwellers continue to ravage nature to this day.
Long has she endured their transgressions, clinging to hope.
Macula Marius: Please forgive me, dear nature... Just a little longer. The day will come when all can coexist in harmony, I know it...
Lyria: Marius... Marius!
Macula Marius: ...!
Macula Marius: Lyria... And (Captain)? Vyrn, too...
Lyria: Thank goodness... Oh, um, sorry for suddenly barging into your room like this. We got worried after hearing your cries...
Macula Marius: Hehe... That's fine. The gesture is appreciated.
Vyrn: Are you okay though? If anything's bothering ya, don't hesitate to open up to us!
Macula Marius: This is nothing new... You need not concern yourself.
Marius laughs quietly to herself. She leaves the room, making sure to give everyone a gentle head pat on the way out.
Lyria: Um, where are you...
Macula Marius: Just going out for some fresh air. A little change of scenery, that's all. Once again, no need for alarm.
Vyrn: She says not to worry, but whatever was happening in here sounded pretty rough... It'd only be natural to worry after hearing that.
Vyrn: Sure would be nice if we could help her somehow, but she won't tell us anything...
Lyria: Well... at the very least, I hope she starts feeling better.
Lyria: Oh! I've just thought of an idea! Say, how about... Whisper, whisper...
Vyrn: Hmm... You may be onto something here. This might just be the ticket!
Vyrn: All right! Let's give it a shot!
Lyria: Yay! Let's do it! Come on, (Captain)! You too, Vyrn!
A few days later, (Captain) and Lyria invite Marius to join them on a special journey.
Macula Marius: I don't have any reason to refuse, but may I ask the purpose of this journey?
Lyria: Hehe... That's for you to find out when we get there!
Macula Marius: Oh?
Despite her visible reservations, Marius agrees to go along with (Captain) and the others on a journey.
A Watchful Guardian: Scene 2
The crew arrive at the town where they first met Macula Marius and find the townspeople in the midst of a tree-planting festival—a sharp contrast from their destructive ways in the past. Macula Marius is pleased to learn that thanks to (Captain) and the crew's efforts, the townspeople were convinced to live greener. However, a sudden explosion sets the nearby forest ablaze.
Macula Marius: This place...
The place that (Captain) has taken Marius is none other than the town where they first met.
However, the widespread construction and industry that once threatened nature here is no more. Instead, something else catches Marius's eye.
Macula Marius: The citizens... Are they planting flowers?
Townswoman: Not only flowers, miss! We're growing all kinds o' fruits and veggies here!
Lyria: It looks like the town is having a tree-growing festival of sorts!
Macula Marius: Hehe... How lovely. Although surely such a tradition did not exist here before.
Macula Marius: The skydwellers of this island had no interest in the wellbeing of mother nature. They destroyed whatever they needed for the growth of their town.
Townswoman: Ahaha... A shameful chapter of our history, really, but true nonetheless.
Townswoman: This festival isn't one we've had for long. In fact, it's a rather new tradition we've only just started.
Macula Marius: Oh? Well that certainly is unexpected. What could have convinced you to start such a custom?
Townsman: Up 'til not too long ago, we put all of our focus and effort into the growth of the town. Not much consideration was put into anythin' else.
Townsman: But ever since that one day where we all fell into a strange slumber, we've all had a change of heart.
Macula Marius: ...!
Townswoman: All I remember is the cold... I thought I'd never wake again. It was just awful.
Macula Marius: Yes, how terrible it must have been...
Townsman: Yeah, well... While we were in that dark place, we heard a voice tellin' us it was punishment from nature itself!
Macula Marius: ...
Townsman: That really got us thinkin'... We were only concerned 'bout our own gains, burnin' through all the natural resources around us.
Townswoman: After reflecting on what we'd been doing and then what happened to us, the signs were quite clear.
Townsman: We put a halt to all the development projects we had goin' on and chose to live more harmoniously with nature.
Macula Marius: Really now? But what about the prosperity of your town?
Macula Marius: Was the fear of nature's retribution enough to convince the whole town to reconsider?
Townswoman: Ahaha... You're a sharp one. There were indeed plenty who were vehemently against it.
Townsman: But for now I'd say most of us are on the same page, choosin' to live in harmony with nature.
Townsman: And we owe it all to (Captain) and the crew.
Macula Marius: This crew? What do you mean by that?
Townswoman: They came to our town countless times to persuade us to stop our destructive ways.
Townsman: In fact, they're the ones that helped us come up with ideas for this festival!
Macula Marius: Wait, when did you...
Lyria: Hehe... I thought you'd be happy to see more people taking care of nature.
Macula Marius: All this for me? Such kindhearted souls...
Vyrn: What are we waiting for? Enough thumb-twiddling, more thumb-greening!
Macula Marius: Very well! Let's show our appreciation for nature, a love as pure as the freshly melted ice.
Marius begins to happily partake in the festivities, helping the citizens plant seeds around the town.
A sudden explosion sets the forest around them ablaze.
A Watchful Guardian: Scene 3
The culprits responsible for the fires are two men who originally came to the island to profit on new construction projects, which have now been halted. Even after being confronted by the townspeople, they throw another oil bomb onto the fields, inciting Macula Marius's rage.
Hooligan 1: Whooo-eee! Ain't nothin' like explosives to do a little quick ground-leveling!
Hooligan 2: Hahaha! Once the dust clears, we'll be able to build whatever we want here!
The crew finds a couple of men laughing sinisterly as the greenery before them continues to burn.
Vyrn: Wh-what the heck are they doing!
Townswoman: Oh, those fellows... They just won't listen...
Macula Marius: Who are those rotten men? Do you know their identities?
Townsman: Those guys ain't from 'round here... They came on business to oversee the construction happenin' on this island.
Townsman: After we told 'em we'd be putting a stop to things, they've been harassing us nonstop.
Hooligan 1: Harassment? You've gotta be outta yer damn mind!
Hooligan 2: That whole thing about nature's punishment or whatever ain't nothin' more than simple mass hysteria—we've come to snap y'all out of it!
Townswoman: Don't be absurd! We all saw what happened and are well aware of our choices!
Hooligan 1: Nah, that's just more delusion-talk. Face it—there's no other reason why you'd change yer minds so quickly about the construction!
Hooligan 2: I mean, look at all the land on this island waitin' for buildin' to happen! So much wasted potential not lettin' us turn yer dinky town into somethin' truly great!
Hooligan 1: Right? You'll all get a taste of a lavish lifestyle, and we'll get paid! It's basic math... a win-win for everybody!
Vyrn: Don't try and kid us! We know you only care about the money!
Hooligan 1: And what's wrong with that? We need to get somethin' outta this place too, you know!
Hooligan 2: So whaddaya say? You can help us help you! Open your eyes and face this reality!
The man reveals a flaming bottle in his hand and hurls it into one of the townspeople's freshly-planted fields.
Townswoman: Wh-what in blazes are you doing? Our hard work... The plants...
Hooligan 1: Better wake up and smell the roses soon... Before the whole town goes up! Hahahah!
Vyrn: These jerks... (Captain)! We've gotta do something about—
Macula Marius: Unforgivable...
Macula Marius: Foolish skydwellers, hearts as cold as ice...
Hooligan 1: You say somethin', lady? Or are you with the rest o' these sheep here? We'll gladly open your eyes to reality too!
Hooligan 1: H-huh? Aaaargh!
Hooligan 2: Wh-what's with your hand? I-it's frozen solid!
Ignoring their cries, Marius advances on the two men.
With each of her steps, the ground beneath crystallizes to frost, putting out the nearby fires.
Macula Marius: Pitiful, benighted skydwellers... choose your final words wisely.
Macula Marius: For the hour of judgment has come.
A Watchful Guardian: Scene 4
Macula Marius uses her magic to create an ethereal vision of a glimmering landscape, lush with natural beauty, convincing the culprits to put their effort into beautifying the nature around them instead. She realizes now that change can be brought forth without taking lives, and her faith that someday skydwellers and nature will coexist in harmony remains unshaken.
Macula Marius: Your cries will not help you now. Your fate is sealed.
Vyrn: H-hey... Let's all calm down!
Lyria: Wait, Marius! If you punish these people... If you do that...
Lyria: Marius... You'll surely regret it!
Macula Marius: This is your judgment.
Lyria's cries go unanswered, and Marius unleashes a wave of frigid sorcery before her.
However, the frosty wave seems to miss the mark. Instead, the surrounding plants and trees begin to blossom and crystallize—a glimmering yet lush landscape is created before their very eyes.
Hooligan 1: Wha... Were we saved?
Hooligan 2: Hey... Look at that... It-it's breathtaking.
Macula Marius: So you are capable of seeing its beauty... But the true splendor of nature is even greater.
With those words and a wave of her staff, the icy vision vanishes before the onlookers.
Macula Marius: You there... You said you wished to make money, yes?
Hooligan 2: Huh? Well, yeah...
Macula Marius: Then restore the nature here to its former glory. Surely there is profit to be found in tourism as well?
Macula Marius: Can you find it in your heart to live in harmony with nature?
Hooligan 1: ...
Hooligan 2: Say... You think y'all could let us help you plant some trees? C'mon, please...
Hooligan 1: Yeah, we'll help restore all that land we burned too... I don't even care about the cash anymore.
Hooligan 1: All I want is to see a landscape even more breathtaking than the one she showed us...
Hooligan 2: I guess we were the ones that needed to wake up. We can see clearly now though!
Townswoman: Of course! You're both still welcome to help us!
After a change of heart, the two would-be villains join the other townspeople in planting trees.
Lyria: Yay! That's great, isn't it, Marius?
Macula Marius: Oh, Lyria? What is it, do you want more head pats?
Lyria: Yes... Uh, I mean, not now! Um... You said you would be judging them, so...
Macula Marius: Oh, Lyria... I didn't mean to worry you. But I did stay true to my word.
Macula Marius: We all make mistakes... But I saw that skydwellers can learn from them, just as the citizens here have done.
Macula Marius: Teaching them the error of their ways and giving them a chance to redeem themselves is also a form of judgment. It doesn't need to involve taking a life.
Macula Marius: To not realize this is my own failure... I must have been too focused to see the whole picture.
Macula Marius: It is thanks to you that I can see clearly. Lyria, (Captain), and you too, Vyrn... You have my gratitude.
Lyria: Hehe... You're welcome!
The crew joins the townspeople once more in their festivities, helping to plant seeds all around the island.
As everyone is busy enjoying themselves, Marius takes a moment of reflection alone.
Macula Marius: (These skydwellers were able to start anew... Surely the same could be said for all of us.)
Macula Marius: (And the day where nature can coexist in harmony with all... it may be close.)
Marius smiles to herself and lets a sigh of relief escape her lips.
Thanks to the events that transpired today, surely her dreams will be a little sweeter from now on.