Popol Saga Chapter Four
As it turns out, the location Lunalu is searching for is actually a beach from chapter four of her favorite work of fiction, the Popol Saga. She experiences a catharsis upon finding the beach.
One day, the crew are on assignment when they come across the monster artist Lunalu.
Lyria: Phew...that was harder than I expected. I am glad you managed to get the picture though!
Lunalu: It's not finished yet. Now I need to do the coloring.
Lyria: Huh? Now? Do you not need to rest a little...
Lunalu: I want to finish right away, while the monster is still fresh in my mind.
Lyria: Whoa... such enthusiasm for your art! That's cool!
Lunalu: It's not that. This is a job, so I need to work to the best of my ability. It's nothing to do with inspiration or anything.
But in her private studio are countless paintings of men.
Lunalu: Right now I'm... only known for drawing monsters. But I really want to be recognised for romantic art.
Lyria: Err... romantic art?
Lunalu: Knights from fanciful books... princes from far-off lands... Don't you ever have daydreams about things like that?
Lunalu: Personal daydreams like that... That's what I wanted to capture through words and pictures in an illustrated storybook.
Lunalu: I want to create... I guess you'd call them romantic storybooks.
Vyrn: Romantic storybooks. How, uh... interesting?
Lunalu: Think what you want. I'm not gonna waste my time trying to explain.
Lunalu is always distressed over her skills not quite matching up with her hobbies.
Unable to give up her dream, Lunalu joins the crew on a personal quest to collect tales of romance and further her studies.
Lunalu: Amazing... I could gather all kinds of romantic things.
Lunalu: Is this a dream? If it is, I hope I don't wake up.
In her pursuit of art, Lunalu further expands her limitless imagination in the boundless skies.
The crew is in the middle of its vacation in the Auguste Isles.
But Lunalu is spending her time looking restlessly around the beach, her expression unusually serious.
Lunalu: Hm, it's not here either.
Lunalu: And I'm hot, tired, and dying of thirst.
Lunalu: Ah, Prince Popol... Help me!
Vyrn: Hm? What are you doing here, Lunalu?
Lunalu: Ngh, it's nothing!
Lyria: Really? It seemed like you were looking for something just now.
Lunalu: Y-you're just seeing things! It must be an illusion created by my evil eye!
Lyria: Huh? You can do that?
Vyrn: C'mon, what's really going on? We can't help if you don't tell us.
Lunalu: I'm location scouting.
Lunalu: Specifically for scenic locations to use in my romantic storybooks.
Lyria: Sounds like something we can help with!
Lunalu: Huh? N-no, it's okay... I wouldn't want to bother you with it.
Lyria: It's no bother! Besides, we just happened to be taking a walk out here. Right, (Captain)?
Lunalu: Fine, I guess.
Vyrn: Let's go that way first! I know a great spot!
Lyria: Teehee, how about the beach here? Look at all the beautiful seashells along the shore.
Lunalu: Yeah, I guess this could work.
Lyria: What's the matter, Lunalu? You don't like beaches?
Lunalu: That's not it. I just prefer a more quiet, relaxed atmosphere.
Lyria: Teehee, I know the feeling.
Vyrn: Hey, hey, how about the scenery here? The boulder over there looks pretty awesome!
Vyrn: Better watch your step here. Wouldn't want you to take a tumble!
Lunalu: I'll be okay. Anyway, I think there's a cave arou—
Vyrn: No, not my tail!
Lyria: Sigh, it's not easy finding a good location.
Vyrn: But doesn't it seem a bit odd? Lunalu called it location scouting, but it looks like she's already got something in mind.
Lunalu: That cave...!
Lunalu: That must be it! It has to be in there!
Lyria: Lunalu? Ah, she ran off...
Vyrn: Anything could be waiting in there! We'd better go after her!
Lunalu: Huff... Huff... My feet are killing me...
Lunalu: But that shape! That's exactly what it looked like in the newsletter!
Lunalu: Praise Prince Popol! There's no stopping me now!
Lunalu: Eek! Some sort of tomb guardian?
Vyrn: Whew, we finally caught up...
Lunalu? You look scared stiff.
Lyria: Yikes, what's a crawdad doing here? Go away, shoo!
Lunalu: Phew, good thing you guys followed me.
Vyrn: No sweat. But what are you looking for in here anyway?
Lunalu: That's... well...
Lyria: Oh no! Lunalu, that's an awful scrape on your knee! We need to go get that taken care of.
Lunalu: No! There's something I have to do!
Lunalu: It's bigger than me, bigger than anything I've ever done. I have to do this no matter what!
Lunalu: Don't you dare try to stop me! Stand aside!
Vyrn: Uhh, well... I don't see anyone in the way.
Lunalu: Sorry, I just got a little worked up...
Lyria: Um, can you tell us what's up ahead? It sounds really important.
Lunalu: The sanctuary.
Lunalu: It's actually a small beach up ahead. That's where I'm really headed.
Vyrn: Huh? I've never heard of this sanctuary.
Lunalu: It's in the fourth chapter of the Popol Saga.
Lunalu: One of the illustrations was based on that beach.
Lunalu: Among us fans, the beach is super famous. It's holier than holy! To call it anything less than a sanctuary would be sacrilege.
Lunalu: But we don't force our ideas on non-fans, and the saga couple's relationship is open to interpretation to begin with.
Lyria: So it's like a tourist attraction that only fans know about?
Lunalu: Yes, that's what it boils down to.
Vyrn: So we're on a sightseeing tour of romantic locations. You might as well admit it.
Lunalu: Hey, it's not like I was trying to hide anything.
Lyria: Now, now, we're almost there. Will you be okay with your knee though?
Lunalu: Yes, let's go.
The crew emerges from the cave to find a small beach.
The lush greenery and palm trees infuse the locale with romance.
Lyria: Wow, it's beautiful!
Vyrn: Yeah, this is really something.
Lyria: How does it feel to finally see the beach for yourself, Lunalu?
Lunalu: It's nice and all, but it's kind of plain.
Lunalu: And yet...
Lunalu: Why am I crying?
Lunalu: Every night, I would try to picture what the beach might look like...
Lunalu: And here I finally am.
Lyria: Congratulations, Lunalu!
Lunalu: Thanks, everyone. You helped fulfill my dream.
Vyrn: Hey, you still haven't told us what's so special about this place in the Popol Saga.
Lunalu: Popol is on an excursion when he first meets his best friend, Mikhail, here.
Lunalu: Popol never reveals his true identity, so they're just two kids playing at the beach every day, talking about their hopes and dreams.
Lyria: Uh-huh, and then?
Lunalu: The two meet again after a few years... Only this time, as representatives of warring nations on the battlefield.
Lyria: What do you mean?
Lunalu: Mikhail was actually the son of the general of the opposing nation.
Lunalu: The two are forced to duel to the death, and then, by Mikhail's dying wish, Popol buries his body at the beach where they first met.
Lyria: That's so sad!
Vyrn: Uh, I hate to spoil the mood here, but who's Popol?
Lunalu: You don't know?
Vyrn: How would I? Lyria seems to know though.
Lyria: Ahaha. Actually, I don't know either. But it's just so sad.
Lunalu: Haha, I'll lend you Popol's Saga when we get back to the ship, as long as you promise to handle it with care.
And this is how Lunalu ended up visiting the cherished location of her dreams. She'll treasure the memory for years to come.
But summer has only just begun, and Lunalu's passion as an artist burns brighter than ever.
Armored Warrior Shenanigans
Lunalu is having trouble breaking out of her creative and emotional lull when a mysterious crab appears from the seas to cheer her up. When a group of thugs start picking on the crab, Lunalu goes up against them.
Lyria: Whee! You should jump in for a swim too, Lunalu!
Lunalu: But I'll get wet.
Vyrn: Hey, that's what the swimsuit's for, right?
Lunalu: Well, I suppose experiencing new things is important for an artist.
Lyria: The sea's perfect for that! Plus, it'll help take your mind off things for a while.
Lunalu: All right, you've convinced me...
Lunalu: I'll go back to the beach house. It's just too hot, icky, and well, summery out here.
Vyrn: Whoa, back to square one? But you might not feel like coming out again.
Lunalu: Yeah, I guess so.
The crew is enjoying its vacation in the Auguste Isles.
Lunalu wears a serious expression as she spends her days drawing one romantic illustration after another.
But she makes little progress, so she goes out to the crew for help.
Lunalu: Sigh, what am I ever going to do?
Lyria: And I thought coming out here would make things easier...
Vyrn: Boy oh boy, how are we ever going to get her to think about anything other than how stuck she is?
Lunalu: I'm so sorry, everyone. I have to head back.
Lyria: Um, why don't we actually try doing something out here?
Lunalu: No point waiting for a revelation that won't come. I just have to face the reality of it.
Vyrn: Reality, huh? I get the feeling you're taking this way too seriously.
Vyrn: What the... Everyone look! Something's in the water!
Lunalu: Could this be the revelation?
The crew looks intently at the bubbling seawater.
Lyria: Umm, it looks like a crab monster.
Vyrn: I wasn't expecting a crab, but maybe this is a revelation?
Lunalu: No way. Crabs gross me out.
Lyria: Strange. The crab's not attacking us.
Vyrn: Yeah, it's not moving at all. Maybe I should go take a closer look.
Lunalu: Meh, who cares about some crab. I say we just sit back down and relax.
Lyria: Sounds good to me.
Lunalu: I guess it's not so easy with a crab staring at us.
Lyria: Ahaha, I feel bad for it though. That shell looks really hot.
Lunalu: Yeah, plus it's hard and heavy.
Lyria: Hmm, I wonder if it ever takes the shell off?
Lunalu: Wouldn't that be dangerous if an enemy shows up?
Lyria: Ah, right. I guess it works like armor.
Lunalu: Armor? Well, now that you mention it...
Lunalu: Hm, armor covering the entire body... (Would be even better with a dark tone...)
Lyria: You know, thinking of that as armor makes the crab look really strong!
Lunalu: It certainly does. (It also looks cryptic, dark, and adventurous.)
Lyria: That reminds me! Lunalu, do you like crab meat?
Lunalu: Crab meat?
Lyria: Yeah. I heard it depends on the type, but I think it tastes great!
Lunalu: Really? Well, when it comes to armored warriors, I'm more interested in their emotional vulnerability inside.
Lyria: Huh, vulnerability inside?
Lunalu: Gah! What I mean to say is—
Lyria: Oh, I see now! The internal organs!
Lunalu: Armor plated internal organs?
Lunalu: Haha, you know, I do like the sound of that.
Lunalu: Hm, what's the matter?
Lyria: It's been so long since I've seen you smile, Lunalu.
Lunalu: Come to think of it...
Vyrn: This is not good, guys! Look at the crab!
Thug 1: Pfft, talk about a monster that doesn't fight back!
Thug 2: Bwahaha, that makes it perfect for target practice.
Lyria: This is terrible! The crab isn't even doing anything to them!
Vyrn: This makes me sick! But the crab is a monster after all.
Vyrn: Hey, Lunalu! What are you gonna do?
Thug 1: Know your place, monster. Crab's Bane!
Thug 2: Wicked! Might as well try out my skills too.
Lunalu: Leave it alone.
Thug 1: Hah, who the heck are you? You'd stand up for a monster?
Lunalu: Yeah. I don't even like crabs, but this one's special.
Thug 2: Humph, that's a good one. The heat must be getting to your head. Let's see how you handle this!
Armored Warrior Shenanigans: Scene 2
After fighting off the thugs, Lunalu collapses from heatstroke and enters a strange dream. This is where she meets the talking crab that allays so many of her fears.
The crew fights off the thugs and saves the crab.
Strongly due in part to the raging summer heat, the crew is already exhausted.
Vyrn: Wheeze, I can't take this heat anymore...
Lyria: Me neither. Why don't we go back to the beach house?
Lunalu: Yeah, I'm starving.
Vyrn: Hm? All that fighting, and I don't see a single drop of sweat on you, Lunalu.
Lunalu: Well, an artist has to be strong.
Lyria: Wha—Lunalu just collapsed!
Vyrn: It must be heatstroke! That's why she wasn't sweating.
Vyrn: Lunalu? Please, wake up!
Lunalu: Unh... ngh...
Lunalu: What... am I doing here?
Crab: Thank goodness you're awake.
Lunalu: Did you just speak?
Crab: Heh, don't be afraid. I don't pinch. You should be waking up soon in the real world too.
Lunalu: So soon?
Crab: Sounds like you'd rather stay here. Artist's block must really have you stumped.
Lunalu: It doesn't matter how many hundreds of illustrations I draw. I never get any better.
Lunalu: But I get worried if I'm not drawing. And when I do draw and see how bad my work is, I get worried anyway...
Crab: Well, once you get over the slump, the ideas will come pouring out.
Lunalu: Humph, what does a crab know about slumps?
Crab: Haha, we crabs go into a slump before we molt our shells. That's how we grow. So I know a bit about how growth works.
Lunalu: But it hurts...
Crab: Would you rather stay here with me forever? In this boring world that never changes?
Lunalu: Huh? Never, not with a crab.
Crab: That's right. You have to move forward! Defeat me and awaken!
Lunalu: I... I have to keep going!
Armored Warrior Shenanigans: Scene 3
Lunalu wakes up fully rejuvenated thanks to a certain crab's magical giant bubbles. She is now more driven than ever to pursue her dream of becoming a full-fledged romance artist.
Vyrn: Whew! Thank goodness you're awake, Lunalu!
Lunalu: Sorry for worrying you... But how did you nurse me back to health so fast?
Lyria: Oh, it was the crab. It created these giant bubbles, and placed them all around you.
Lunalu: Crabs can make bubbles?
Vyrn: I couldn't believe it either. But I guess it cooled you down with those bubbles, and that's why you're okay now.
Lunalu: You know, I think I dreamed of the crab.
Lunalu: Meh, I don't remember much about it. Anyway, care to go for a swim later?
Lyria: Sure, I'd love to! But you're okay with getting wet?
Lunalu: Not really. I just get the feeling I have to try new things if I want to make progress.
Vyrn: Hm, make progress?
Lunalu: Haha, let's go!
Having experienced a most wondrous encounter at the beach, Lunalu begins to break out of her old shell.
Perhaps one day the crab's beach will also come to be known as a sanctuary for inspiring one of the greatest artists of all time.