Location: The Golden Hand, The Greenguard Alliance - Choose a Faction, The Greenguard Alliance - Golden Hand Faction -> Up Right, Daybreak (Golden Hand), Into the Light, The Spells We Weave, Sunfall: Part 1, Sunfall: Part 2, The Royal Resistance - Golden Hand Faction, A Storm in the Night, A Shocking Discovery, Grinding Gears, Direct Current, The Spark of the Soul, Broken Circuit (Part 1), Of Duty and Dragons, The Awakened Depths - Golden Hand Faction, Speaker and Slayer, The Descent, Reasons to Fight, Into the Unknown, In Search of Slayers, Roots of Change, The Way Forward, Through the Tangle, The Deep Dark, Into the Abyss, Fate's Flow (Part 1), Fate's Flow (Part 2), Twin Tides, Awakened Depths: Epilogue (All Versions), Fallen Facade, Chasing Answers, Outpost Outskirts, Outpost Yeden -> 2 Right, Project Casca, Hawk in the Sky, Crash and Burn, The Only Path, For the Fallen
The Golden Hand
Ostromir: Oh, good.
Ostromir: Hello there, primitives!
Ostromir: I'm Ostromir!
Ostromir: Most unfortunate incident.
Ostromir: But we're not allowed to contain you. Because if we do that, it makes our jobs so much more difficult. Politics and such.
Ostromir: Sincerest apologies.
Ostromir: Not entirely our doing.
Ostromir: Something or someone has interfered!
Ostromir: At great cost and personal risk!
Ostromir: If you don't, then we're all idiots.
Ostromir: And you'd probably imprison or execute us.
Ostromir: I wouldn't like that.
Ostromir: About that closure... I don't suppose you'd be willing to divulge how that was managed?
Ostromir: So you probably can't do it again. Probably.
Ostromir: Preposterous, wouldn't you agree?
Ostromir: Are you satisfied with that answer?
Ostromir: Ah, uh, yes, certainly.
Ostromir: We have to get close to make our adjustments.
Ostromir: When we have completed our task, we will send word back to the Empire, and the process of closing will begin.
Ostromir: Very risky and expensive.
Ostromir: It wouldn't do us any good if we arrived at a rift and our mangled remains were re-mangled by elementals.
Ostromir: That depends on Jaania.
Ostromir: The current rifts force the resources of the Rose away from the Fissure. The Kingdom being caught in the crossfire is regrettable, but—
Ostromir: Rest assured, the Shapeless does not wish to conquer your lands, only to do what it takes to stop the Rose's interference.
Ostromir: Does that answer your question?
Ostromir: You don't know?
Ostromir: What kind of backwards theo—
Ostromir: As long as it keeps your precious nose out of the Fissure.
Ostromir: So dramatic.
Ostromir: Of course.
The Greenguard Alliance - Choose a Faction
Ostromir: <Character>! Come to join us? The Queen lent us some of her knights, but we could use all the help we can get!
Ostromir: Our mission is to head deep into invasion territory.
Ostromir: Luckily, we should only have to reach one of them. They're connected, you see.
Ostromir: The Queen Victoria has lent us a number of her knights to escort us, but...
Ostromir: Well. You've seen the glory of Nieboheim and her people. These knights are certainly no heroes, am I right?
Ostromir: And I'm sure with your assistance, it will be as simple as a walk to the Forums!
The Greenguard Alliance - Golden Hand Faction
Ostromir: And here is <Character>! Didn't get lost on the way out here, I see! A true hero!
Ostromir: War? Ha! We've seen war, <Character>.
Ostromir: Maybe that's what the Vind and Rose are doing, but what we are doing...
Ostromir: This is maintenance.
Ostromir: A very important mission! We had these new golems, you see, and there were some adjustments that—
Ostromir: It's like... The Shapeless can tell us where to go and what to do, right? And we have to do it.
Ostromir: But we also get the opportunity to see so much more of the world.
Ostromir: And so the Shapeless affords us certain liberties that other Magesters do not have.
Ostromir: Our votes in the Magesterium count the same in the eyes of the Shapeless, but perhaps we aren't always around to vote.
Ostromir: Later, perhaps, hero <Character>. We must prepare!
Daybreak (Golden Hand)
Ostromir: This is stupid... We need more time!
Ostromir: ...Waste of breath...
Ostromir: A Tytan.
Ostromir: We couldn't control them if we wanted!
Ostromir: Regardless, we've been seeing the effects of this creature and or the location of this creature's origin passing through the rift.
Ostromir: Stupid machine!
Ostromir: That's probably the best decision for now.
Ostromir: Look, this is an intricate magical process, the details of which would tie your shriveled excuse for a brain in knots and—
Into the Light
Ostromir: It's... how do you say it? Locked?
Ostromir: Something like that.
Ostromir: Nothing we can't overcome!
Ostromir: The ambient temperature is increasing to alarming levels!
The Spells We Weave
Ostromir: It is a natural being, and so, it makes sense that it is bound by natural laws.
Ostromir: We should be ready when you are.
Sunfall: Part 1
Ostromir: I... can hold this for now... but please hurry!
O??ro?i?: Y-u'll -ave to find an-th– *pop*
Sunfall: Part 2
Ostromir: Nobody back home is going to believe this!
Ostromir: It would be advisable to post some guards near it, though. You never know, right?
The Royal Resistance - Golden Hand Faction
Ostromir: Systems secure for some ruins diving. It's been a while, hasn't it, Vseslava? Glad you're here, <Character>.
Ostromir: Shapeless knows. The border village incident must have been quite severe for them to spread the investigation so thin, though.
Ostromir: Nothing to worry about. Just the usual bureaucracy and inter-departmental politics.
Ostromir: Of course, traveling so much, our exposure to...
Ostromir: ...The Shapeless's gift is much more limited.
Ostromir: Regardless, we also have a number of focus crystals to use as backup to power our suits and tools...
Ostromir: ...should we find ourselves unable to use our own mana for whatever reason.
Ostromir: From the Shapeless.
Ostromir: Oh, I hate it when you look at me like that.
Ostromir: What, s/he's a hero, isn't s/he? I'm sure it's fine.
Ostromir: It is a source of magic that only the Shapeless' chosen may draw from.
Ostromir: It allows the Magesters to perform extraordinary feats of magic as the Shapeless wills.
Ostromir: However, prolonged exposure to it may have some... adverse effects on one's natural ability to use magic.
Ostromir: My personal theory is that by using it, one's soul is gradu–
Ostromir: That's right. Hmm. I bet some of the research teams back home would give much to be able to examine these ruins in person.
Ostromir: We must be sure to borrow some samples. Vseslava, I'm almost certain these could be connected to... you know...
Ostromir: Now where did I put that wrench?
After completing A Shocking Discovery:
Ostromir: Let it go, Vseslava. With the Proclamation rifts as they are, they'll learn sooner or later.
A Storm in the Night
Ostromir: The plan is acceptable. I look forward to exploring what sorts of ruins you have on this continent!
Ostromir: Of course, of course.
Ostromir: Job first.
If you joined the Golden Hand Faction:
Ostromir: Looks like you'll be giving us a tour of the region, <Character>!
Ostromir: Such a dreary place. And you people voluntarily chose to settle here?
A Shocking Discovery
Ostromir: Who designed these structures to be so... maze-like?
Ostromir: The projection of the rift indicates that a focus lies deep within...
Ostromir: Bah, I don't understand your culture and your reverence for such old and forgotten things.
Ostromir: If we could only just–
Ostromir: I'm just saying, whoever made or created these dusty old halls are long gone. Why let old things stand in the way of progress?
Ostromir: The nomad tribes? Your alliance has the superior numbers and capabilities. Surely the nomad tribes stand no challenge?
Ostromir: Yes, all the peace and dingy ruins you could ever want, after a brief one–sided campaign.
Ostromir: What do you think, <Character>? Surely you agree with me? We're pressed for time, after all.
If you select the 'I agree. We're in a rush.' option:
Ostromir: At least we have our priorities straight, right, <Character>? We'll respect the wishes of your Queen but–If you select the 'No, we must be careful.' option:
Ostromir: Yes, yes, and we mustn't anger your most gracious Queen. I'm sure she won't mind if we do a little bit of–Ostromir: Wait.
Ostromir: Hold up.
Ostromir: It's none of our business. Let them pass and we'll be on our way.
Ostromir: My combat abilities are rather limited. Excuse me if I don't want to run out and die for something that I have no familiarity with.
Ostromir: Everyone wants to be a Hero. Go on, save the day.
Ostromir: Hmm. I think I can open this. But are you sure you want to?
Ostromir: Oh, I could think of any number of threats that such an unknown thing could pose...
Ostromir: Okay, but if it fries us all to a crisp, I told you so.
Ostromir: I think I understand why it was caged now. Permission to re-cage it?
Ostromir: Energy? I don't think we've ever sent any expeditions to–
Ostromir: Er, no.
Ostromir: I have no idea what this Prince is talking about.
Ostromir: I am curious, however. How is it that we understand each other?
Ostromir: I would assume there would have been a language barrier...
Ostromir: If you came through, then, do you remember where that happened?
Ostromir: Fantastic. It's of no help at all. Shall we get a move on, then?
Ostromir: I don't think I'll ever grow accustomed to your... culture's penchant for the irrelevant.
Ostromir: Very well. Follow me, everyone.
Ostromir: I have no idea what this Prince is talking about.
Ostromir: Or maybe we could make a deal with the other Lagohm and exchange the Prince for–
Ostromir: Very well. I still don't trust it though.
If you joined the Golden Hand Faction:
Ostromir: I'll make sure it doesn't get up to anything untoward.
Ostromir: I told you so.
Ostromir: "Open the cage, Ostromir, it will be fine, Ostromir."
Ostromir: "Look at how cute the invading enemy is, Ostromir."
Ostromir: Nobody ever listens to Ostromir.
Ostromir: I would not expect so.
Ostromir: And if I could?
Ostromir: Out? Do you even know where we are?
Ostromir: Which means we don't know where the rift is on this side either.
Ostromir: Save your energy.
Ostromir: You too, <Dragon>?
Ostromir: What is it that you have against me? I am being reasonable, logical–
Ostromir: And seeing as you channel magic...
Ostromir: As the Shapeless wills.
Ostromir: An Enchanter scholar and an Assassin...
Ostromir: I remember that case. Caused some concern among the Magesterium when they vanished.
Ostromir: So, they thought they would lose a child.
Ostromir: That explains much.
Ostromir: Enough. Such painful memories are not for–
Ostromir: I understand why you blame the Magesterium
Ostromir: I am afraid your parents had nothing to fear.
Ostromir: Oh, you most certainly would have been conscripted.
Ostromir: And with your natural ability... yes, I imagine you would have succeeded.
Ostromir: No. Your parents would have never knowingly seen you again, that much is true.
Ostromir: But you, you would have seen them. Protected them. Watched them grow old.
Ostromir: ...as a Magester.
Ostromir: Surely, in their positions, they could have known, could have learned, even if they were not supposed to.
Ostromir: They could have been silently proud. It has been known to happen, though rarely.
Ostromir: My parents are lumberers out in the countryside. As far as I know, they're well, and happy.
Ostromir: I have a younger sister now too, who owns a stall in the Forums. Sometimes I visit.
Ostromir: She has no idea who I am, of course. Nor should she.
Ostromir: The Magesterium is a second family to me, united by the will of the Shapeless.
Ostromir: And I do my duty. For the sake of the Shapeless, the Empire, and all who reside within it.
Ostromir: You asked.
Ostromir: I answered.
Ostromir: For what little it may be worth to you, I am sorry for what happened to your family.
Ostromir: Such tragedies are never our intentions.
Ostromir: After you, then, Hladach Raven.
Ostromir: Your mother's title. From what I've seen of your skills and ferocity, you have more than earned it.
Ostromir: I cannot undo the past, but allow my actions in the present to prove my intent.
Ostromir: That's definitely the rift.
Ostromir: It seems Eulin was leading us to it.
Ostromir: So you did.
Ostromir: Well done, Hladach Raven, <Dragon>.
Ostromir: We should pass with haste. Before more lagohm show up.
Ostromir: Remember the-?
Ostromir: Ah. Yes. I see. It will be done.
Ostromir: I did not cower!
Ostromir: I would not call it caring so much as unwavering suspicion.
Ostromir: So, thanks to Eulin's help, we now know the way to the rift.
Ostromir: If it is any consolation...
Ostromir: I think your fellow lagohm were too preoccupied with Hladach Raven and <Dragon>'s rampage to notice your role in our escape.
Ostromir: A long story. Not very interesting.
Ostromir: As you say.
Ostromir: Yes. It is a relief. No matter how many times I have-
Ostromir: What? Er- right. Do not worry, <Character>. We are back to working hard.
Ostromir: The city was a-
Ostromir: Come on, Vseslava. It would be more suspicious if I didn't share this very new and unknown information with our allies, would it not?
Ostromir: Exactly! <Character>, the city, the Manufactory, is a mechanical metal mess of gears and Energy.
Ostromir: There is an order to the chaos though. Prince Eulin does not overstate the complications of ruling such a place.
Ostromir: But the city itself sits on a barren lightning scarred plain. Someone attuned with Energy may find it beautiful in its own way...
Ostromir: But it just made my hair stand on end. Not an unusual occurence in the-
Ostromir: Yes, I know. I hope I answered your curiosity, <Character>.
Ostromir: You tease, <Character>. But I will be watching myself closer from now on too. There are many secrets that are not mine to reveal.
Ostromir: Hold up.
Ostromir: Something's not right.
Ostromir: Vseslava, some calculations, if you could?
Ostromir: Keep an eye on Eulin.
Ostromir: Alright, enough chatter. This way, everyone. Quickly.
The Spark of the Soul
Ostromir: And then, if my memory serves, there should be a large room a ways up ahead. Some sort of cathedral, I think.
Ostromir: And that is where we will find our focus point.
Ostromir: They were not expecting an attack from the rift, most likely.
Ostromir: I will be counting on you to keep Vseslava and I safe!
Broken Circuit (Part 1)
Ostromir: We are working as fast as we can, although all the talking is quite distracting.
Ostromir: As you say, Vseslava. The Golden Hand division Osiem shall not be stopped by mere annoyances!
Ostromir: Oh no, whatever shall we do...
Ostromir: We are nowhere close! Shapeless take these foolish Lagohm!
Ostromir: "We are buying you plenty of time" they said! "Do not worry about the ruler of the Manufactory" they said!
Ostromir: Do you have any idea how much concentration it takes to–
Ostromir: Touching. So, shall we get to work?
Ostromir: Vseslava? What is the–
Ostromir: Sudden... pain... headache...
Ostromir: Okay... I think...
Ostromir: Vseslava, status?
Ostromir: Same. We need to finish our job. We need to secure the...
Of Duty and Dragons
Ostromir: By the Shapeless! What manner of foul–
Ostromir: What is that... smell?
Ostromir: ...What happened to your face?
Ostromir: Oh... my head...
Ostromir: Oh! Much better.
Ostromir: But... What happened? I... saw a vision...
Ostromir: Then the Magesterium... the Gift...
Ostromir: And the city? What of Nieboheim? And our people?
Ostromir: I... I see.
Ostromir: Then we... must... continue our duty here.
Ostromir: Traveling back to the Empire would take too long for us to be of any use.
Ostromir: We must protect this land as best we can. As is our job as Magesters of the Golden Hand.
Ostromir: No. Let us... Let us get back to work.
Ostromir: It will be fine. I will be fine.
Ostromir: And... ready! Where is that annoying electric puffball? I am not shrinking the rift with him on this side!
Ostromir: Well, they better hurry! I am still recovering, and maintaining control of this is a strenuous task!
Ostromir: Hurry up!
Ostromir: It is not fully closed, so to say, but it will indeed no longer exert its influence.
Ostromir: Assuming, of course, that it is not further tampered with.
Ostromir: Yes, yes. I wish to apologize for my rudeness earlier, mage. Thank you for your assistance.
Ostromir: And I still do.
Ostromir: It is not merely a belief.
Ostromir: We... I...
Ostromir: Our duty as Golden Hand must come first. It must.
Ostromir: One nation is nothing compared to all who live on Lore.
Ostromir: Hmm... More dragons... This land truly isn't short of insanity.
The Awakened Depths - Golden Hand Faction
Ostromir: There was an insect in my bedding last night! An insect!
Ostromir: It is the principle of the matter.
Ostromir: But there is nothing we can reasonably do about the situation.
Ostromir: It eats away at me inside. The grief burns like nothing I have ever felt.
Ostromir: Shapeless preserve me, if I only had the combat ability you and <Dragon> possess...
Ostromir: Yes. Please. You know, Vseslava, now that the Magesterium is, as far as we know, no more...
Ostromir: It would help me feel better!
Ostromir: Vseslava has graciously allowed me to provide some explanation regarding the Proclamation Rifts!
Ostromir: As you may have surmised, the rifts do indeed lead to the Elemental Wastes.
Ostromir: I have! Although, I imagine the current gate in the Magesterium has closed.
Ostromir: Yes! Top secret, of course, and powered by the Shapeless' gift.
Ostromir: The Magesterium has had quite a number of expeditions into the Wastes, in fact. Even since far before my time.
Ostromir: It does!
Ostromir: What the heathens here call the "Elemental Planes", are such an outdated model of the system.
Ostromir: The Planes are indeed sections of the Wastes. Sections stabilized by the Elemental Lords, or Avatars, I believe you call them.
Ostromir: With how relatively stable they are compared to the rest of the Wastes...
Ostromir: ...they could very well be interpreted as such to those with limited information.
Ostromir: Our theory is that the Elemental Lords struggle to maintain balance between themselves.
Ostromir: The Planes therefore act as... external wells of power from which to draw from.
Ostromir: It is certainly better than using Lore as a battleground!
Ostromir: Now, if you are interested, we ran the most interesting experiments in the Wastes outpost designated–
Ostromir: Ah, yes, I suppose I did get carried away.
Ostromir: I am sure there will be time for it later. And I can maybe discuss with Vseslava more about what may be... appropriate to share.
Ostromir: Thank you, <Character>.
Speaker and Slayer
Ostromir: A... dragon...
Ostromir: Yes, but, <Dragon> is... small. The Great One sounds rather... great.
Ostromir: More... Dragons....
Ostromir: ...Mmh? Yes. Yes! I will manage. Yes.
Ostromir: Such a... primitive way of living. Surely the DragonLords would have offered one such as you a place in their keep?
Ostromir: Are we there yet?
Ostromir: We are lost. Lost!
Ostromir: Fine by me. What about you, Vseslava? Feel like jumping into a dragon's den?
Reasons to Fight
If you joined the Golden Hand Faction:
Ostromir: One moment. Vseslava, should we not disclose what... happened earlier?
Ostromir: <Character>, you are aware that as Magesters of The Golden Hand, Vseslava and I are - were - members of the Magesterium?
Ostromir: The Great One knew things about us. About what... what we have done.
Ostromir: There is much the Magesterium has done to advance the Shapeless Empire.
Ostromir: As magesters of The Golden Hand, we were often on the forefront of such... activities.
Ostromir: Do you not remember The Great One's words? What if we perish in the struggles to come?
Ostromir: No one would remember. Well, besides a gigantic dragon. No offense, <Dragon>.
Ostromir: As you may have surmised, <Character>, there is a reason why we have knowledge of the rifts, and the Wastes beyond.
Ostromir: We have been there before. There have been quite a number of expeditions to the Wastes in the history of the Magesterium.
Ostromir: Underneath the Seym, Nieboheim's central tower, there are laboratories where Magesters are free to conduct research.
Ostromir: It is there that a rift is maintained. Was maintained. Actually, I am not sure of its fate now that–
Ostromir: When I close my eyes, the cries of the... the children...
Ostromir: They still haunt me, even now.
Ostromir: The Great One asked why we continued to assist the Alliance.
Ostromir: There was more than enough reason, they said, for us to abandon our duty and return home.
Ostromir: ...The Empire has likely fallen by now, our people, in disarray.
Ostromir: Vseslava has tried to, how do you say it, block off, that which she does not wish to remember.
Ostromir: But she too is fully committed to this cause.
Ostromir: I cannot help those I left behind, but I can still do some good.
Ostromir: We have nothing else left for us, after all.
Ostromir: Think what you will of us, <Character>. It does not change our course.
Ostromir: Perhaps you were right, Vseslava. Maybe I should not have said anything.
Into the Unknown
Ostromir: We are truly intending to sail to this other city?
Ostromir: What? No. Absolutely not.
Ostromir: I am only commenting on the relative efficiency of an... an ancient sailing ship compared to the speed of—
Ostromir: No, truly, I—
In Search of Slayers
Ostromir: None of you think you should have some sort of protection against the fungus?
Ostromir: No, we do not. But inhaling the spores of whatever this is can not be healthy.
Ostromir: While I understand the Magesterium may have rather unflattering views of lands outside our borders...
Ostromir: I think our policy of not ingesting foreign material into our bodies may prove wise in this case.
Ostromir: There may be long-term effects that are not immediately evident.
Ostromir: You may begin to sprout mushrooms, or one day, suddenly find yourself unable to breathe, or lose bodily functions years afterward, or—
Ostromir: Vseslava and I are not fighters. We can work on some sort of protective headgear for you while we proceed with our task.
Ostromir: There you go, little one.
Ostromir: Yes, I think it is perfect!
Roots of Change
Ostromir: The speed... the precision! Simply fascinating!
The Way Forward
Ostromir: We managed to get our hands on an egg recently, did we not?
Ostromir: Is that so? Such a shame.
Ostromir: ...I suppose it matters little now, anyway...
Ostromir: I am fine, thank you.
Through the Tangle
Ostromir: What about the main stalk? We just cleared the path there!
Ostromir: <Character>'s a hero, you know! Certified by the Magesterium!
Ostromir: The Dragonslayers mentioned Hollow villagers acting out lives, in some sort of poor mockery of natural life.
Ostromir: How much exactly is copied?
Ostromir: Perhaps these mimicked lingering processes are merely used to lure in prey...
The Deep Dark
Ostromir: Hmm. It may not be so simple. The Tytans of the Wastes vary widely in design and temperament.
Ostromir: There is no guarantee that this one will understand <Dragon>. Or would be able to be reasoned with.
Ostromir: I imagine the Tytan is no longer dormant. Well done!
Into the Abyss
Ostromir: This was a possibility to be expected. But there is always a way forward, is there not?
Ostromir: There must be a way to accomplish our mission.
Ostromir: If it is the central source of mana for the Tytan, shutting it down or cutting it off will stop its activity.
Ostromir: Basic, really.
Fate's Flow (Part 1)
If you joined the Golden Hand faction:
Ostromir: Vseslava, wait.
Ostromir: Your beacon.
Ostromir: It is of the utmost priority. Someone from the Magesterium is trying to contact us.
Ostromir: We can only hope. Without backup of some kind, closing the rift on our own will be... challenging.
Ostromir: ...You are an excitable one, are you not?
Ostromir: It's a miracle of the Shapeless that we somehow have reception here. Whatever the message is, it must be important.
Ostromir: Yeden? The Golden Hand there, they are still active?
Ostromir: ...I see. It is comforting to know we are not the last. But I suppose we are still without backup here.
Fate's Flow (Part 2)
Ostromir: Thank you. I just need to... catch my breath.
Ostromir: I feel like my lungs are burning and my legs are pierogi...
Ostromir: But I will not meet my end here.
Ostromir: We just... need to get out of here!
Ostromir: That... that was incredible! Vseslava, did you see that!
Ostromir: The dragon compensated for our fall velocity to properly cushion our descent!
Ostromir: So very impressive!
Ostromir: That... might not be possible.
Ostromir: What with creating those wonderful Containment Units, as well as powering our own filters...
Ostromir: Not to mention all that running back and forth!
Ostromir: Well, now, I would not say we can not.
Ostromir: Just the probability of us stumbling across a spare functional Ignonimous is quite unlikely.
Ostromir: We did not know how much this encounter would take from us!
Ostromir: The mad woman is suggesting we travel this land... naked?!
Awakened Depths: Epilogue (All Versions)
If you joined the Golden Hand Faction: Ostromir: ...Um. The Golden Hand will be... cheering you on!
Ostromir: But it is a time of celebration, is it not? For oh so many reasons!
Ostromir: Besides, we are to conserve mana!
Ostromir: You hear, Vseslava? It is "great"! ...I wonder how it compares to Murshrom brew...?
Ostromir: Okay. Okay. Here goes.
Ostromir: The local aroma is... unique!
Ostromir: Is that so? See, Vseslava, I am learning things!
Ostromir: Right. On to the main attraction! The Moglinberry juice!
Ostromir: It is... it is...
Ostromir: It is a bit sweet, is it not?
Ostromir: I could learn to like it! Vseslava, you must try some!
Ostromir: <Character> will, I'm sure! Or maybe Kara! ...Or <Dragon>? We will be fine!
Ostromir: I grew to like it.
Ostromir: Indeed! To the Shapeless!
Ostromir: Ah... To Nieboheim...
Ostromir: Still a lot of sand everywhere.
Ostromir: Surely The Rose has enough people in their employ to sweep the place up?
Ostromir: Only because—
Ostromir: Casca... Surely they do not mean to—
Ostromir: The betrayal! The subterfuge! Reminds me of Volkenraand.
Ostromir: This... Akanthus... I wonder...
Ostromir: You have had the same suspicions as I, then?
Ostromir: All of Lore is in peril. We can pay for our sins later.
Ostromir: So... Akanthus. From all I have heard described of him, I believe his origin is indeed from Azaveyr. From the Magesterium.
Ostromir: And when I say he originates from the Magesterium, that is very accurate indeed.
Ostromir: As you may know, we Magesters draw our power from a fragment of the Mana Core.
Ostromir: Doing so bestows upon us great power. However, in exchange, it diminishes our connection to the main body of the Mana Core.
Ostromir: This is why we are dependent on the Ignominious or other specialized Foci when traveling.
Ostromir: It is a rather... crippling dependency that the Magesterium has attempted to solve since its inception.
Ostromir: The search for such solutions often involved... experimentation.
Ostromir: He was one of many products of experiments in the Wastes...
Ostromir: ... to determine the viability of a human with no connection to the Mana Core in any form.
Ostromir: He was the lone survivor of his peers, the others failing due to imperfections or... or...
Ostromir: ...Yes. By all means, he became a normal child, except for his imperviousness to magicks and harm.
Ostromir: And so, he was given over to the Magesterium to train and raise until such a day that any magical talent may manifest.
Ostromir: That day never came.
Ostromir: That is not to say the Magesterium has no use for those disinclined to magic, but there had been great expectations placed upon his head.
Ostromir: Despite his lack of magical ability, he still grew to be a ferocious Magester, eventually leading research expeditions of his own.
Ostromir: After that... Well, according to his account at his trial, there had been an accident at his research facility in the Wastes.
Ostromir: ...As he was the only survivor, it was difficult to question his telling of events.
Ostromir: As punishment for his failures, he himself suggested a self-imposed exile.
Ostromir: Some were in favor of harsher punishment, but it was then that realization dawned on the Magesterium.
Ostromir: We had no means by which to contain Sobieslav.
Ostromir: Should he come to desire it, he could eliminate all of Azaveyr, and meet no resistance.
Ostromir: And so, we agreed to his terms of exile.
Ostromir: He was ever the smooth-talker. We had believed that he would view the parting amicably.
Ostromir: Seems we have found where he has turned up!
Ostromir: You underestimate the Magesterium, my friend! We are not the type to leave a potential threat be!
Ostromir: While I have not personally been kept apprised of the developments...
Ostromir: ... there has indeed been official research on how to deal with beings such as Sobieslav.
Ostromir: Yet another reason to visit Outpost Yeden!
Ostromir: It may be a small chance, but the remaining Magesters and Golden Hand may have the resources we need.
Ostromir: Perhaps it would be best for you to stay hidden until diplomacy has been smoothed out, then, little one.
Ostromir: How peculiar. Vseslava, take a look at this array of runes!
Ostromir: It appears we are to travel through the Void, in a contained... pocket of sorts?
Ostromir: Indeed! How very interesting.
Ostromir: Hold on. I don't recognize this rune!
Ostromir: It bears resemblance to the archaic rune for "protection", but the usage is different from—
Ostromir: We are here! Welcome, friends...
Ostromir: To Outpost Yeden!
Ostromir: ...Or, well, close to it. It's somewhere around here, I'm sure!
Ostromir: It is um... It is...
Ostromir: I have never been to the Outpost, personally, but I have heard tales, and read the reports!
Ostromir: We are certainly in the correct region, at least.
Ostromir: Not lost, exactly. Just... in need of direction!
Ostromir: Magester, he means no offense. We have had a long journey, and—
Ostromir: They are the only ones who can help us.
Ostromir: The Magesters are not that bad once you get to know them! They are just... slow to trust outsiders.
Ostromir: Ah, it is like home away from home! How are you doing, <Character>?
Ostromir: The Magesterium survived, <Character>! There is still hope for the Empire! How could I not be hopeful for the future?
Ostromir: The Magesterium's grand undertaking...
Ostromir: We will be part of history, <Character>! You will be a legend among heroes!
Ostromir: Ah, if only my family...
Ostromir: Some survivors have made their way here, to Outpost Yeden.
Ostromir: We have ships transporting refugees and supplies as needed, but it is not a quick journey.
Ostromir: Was it so difficult a decision? We came here to seek help from the Magesterium, and now you have it!
Ostromir: Then, as allies of the Magesterium, information you shall have!
Ostromir: As I mentioned when discussing Sobieslav's origin, the Magesterium depends on a shard of the Mana Core for mana and magicks.
Ostromir: The recent setbacks in Nieboheim were the result of said shard being lost.
Ostromir: As <Character> saw with Vseslava and I, this had a profound effect on the Magesters.
Ostromir: ...We took the shock of mana loss better than many of our comrades, especially those at home in Azaveyr.
Ostromir: Without the shard, the piece of the Mana Core, the vast majority of Magesters could barely function, much less do magicks.
Ostromir: Only by drawing from existing stores or ignominious were some able to survive.
Ostromir: The Golden Hand, of course, being... less entangled with the shard, were able to recover more quickly.
Ostromir: In time, it is possible for Vseslava and I, and a good number of the Golden Hand, to... re-attune to the whole Mana Core, so to speak.
Ostromir: Right. I was getting there.
Ostromir: The Magesterium has always laid claim to these lands around the Fissure. For it is here that our ancestors once lived.
Ostromir: While the records on the Fissure's origins have been lost, we do know that it was a cataclysmic eruption that destroyed the lands of Hawkscry.
Ostromir: It left the surroundings uninhabitable and inhospitable.
Ostromir: And so our ancestors fled across the ocean to Azaveyr, where they encountered the dragons.
Ostromir: Long did they fight, and we were losing ground, until we took one final risk.
Ostromir: A brave group of mages sailed back across the ocean...
Ostromir: ...while some few heroes held the line against the dragons.
Ostromir: The mages descended into the Fissure in search of relics, foci, anything that could assist in our struggle.
Ostromir: And they emerged with something greater.
Ostromir: A fragment of the Mana Core itself!
Ostromir: Invigorated by this infinite well of power, they were able to return to Azaveyr...
Ostromir: ...crushing the remaining dragons, and establishing the Magesterium, all in the name of the Shapeless.
Ostromir: Precisely. That is the heart of our goal here.
Ostromir: We will retrieve a new piece of the Mana Core, and with it, we will reclaim our home, just as our ancestors of legend did so long ago!
Ostromir: Ask away!
Ostromir: The survivors, like Zvezdana and some of the others... they... have limited time left to them.
Ostromir: They may be able to survive with the help of ignominious, but once the supply runs out...
Ostromir: We do not currently have a method to reinvigorate their connection to the Mana Core itself.
Ostromir: But! When Project Casca is successful, there may be hope for them!
Ostromir: What a scholar you are, Amadeus! There is a subtle, yet important distinction.
Ostromir: The Magesters are not entirely... disconnected from the Core.
Ostromir: You are familiar with the concept of soul threads, yes?
Ostromir: According to our understanding, we are connected to the Mana Core by soul threads.
Ostromir: These threads, of course, vary in capacity and number.
Ostromir: Even those without the potential for magical ability are dependent on these threads for their being to exist.
Ostromir: Through attunement with the shard of the Mana Core, the threads between the Magesters and the Mana Core itself have atrophied.
Ostromir: The Magesters can no longer draw from the Core, and in time, without the sustaining flow of mana, their souls will simply... unravel.
Ostromir: And therein lies the miracle and the threat of Akanthus.
Ostromir: He is disconnected from the Mana Core, yet rather than cease to be, he has, as far as we can tell, lived.
Ostromir: From where does his soul draw its power? And how? Such fascinating questions with no easy answers.
Ostromir: Of course they do! Do not doubt the Magesterium! Now that we have shared the nature of the threat, we can better assess our approach.
Ostromir: You had another question to ask, Alteon?
Ostromir: That... it... it...
Ostromir: The Shapeless would never demand such... such... destruction.
Ostromir: Yes. I will let the other Magesters know that you have been sufficiently briefed.
Ostromir: Yes, <Character>?
Ostromir: You are a clever hero, indeed! A relatively slow-moving airship makes for an easy target.
Ostromir: Such ideas have not escaped the Magesterium's notice. But I will be sure to remind them of the opportunity!
Hawk in the Sky
Ostromir: Stupid device... Where did you pull this from? It is ancient!
Ostromir: Just... about...
Crash and Burn
Ostromir: Yes! Just like taking down a dragon in the old stories!
Ostromir: Speaking of which, there is still the matter of Akanthus...
Ostromir: Is... Amadeus okay?
Ostromir: I have seen many new things recently. I do not wish to presume!
The Only Path
Ostromir: Trust us, <Character>. We will stop him and Jaania!
For the Fallen
Ostromir: You worry too much, Vseslava!
Ostromir: Whatever happens, happens. Better me on the front line than others.
Ostromir: My family, if they still live, probably assume I am gone.
Ostromir: We are Magesters.
Ostromir: It is our duty to go into the unknown, to protect our people! Even if we pass unrecognized.
Ostromir: How do you feel before a mission? A quest?
Ostromir: You see, Vseslava? Why think about what we cannot change?
Ostromir: I am coming with you.
Ostromir: This Zadd... Creator of golems. I have business with him.
Ostromir: We have not met. But we will.
Ostromir: <Character> is right. Remain behind, Vseslava.
Ostromir: I am inviting myself. And if you do not take me, then I will go regardless.
Ostromir: My mind will not be changed!
Ostromir: I made a promise that I intend to keep.
Ostromir: I do not wish to say. But it is very important to me. To the Shapeless.
Ostromir: Thank you, Hero. And do not worry. If things take a turn for the worse...
Ostromir: I requisitioned them. In case of emergency.
Ostromir: The Shapeless willed it.
Ostromir: <Character> is not the monster here.
Ostromir: I have him.
Ostromir: This is for the Hladach, Raven.
Ostromir: I... I did it. I did it.
Ostromir: The deed is done.
Ostromir: ...I think... I... am feeling slightly nauseous.
Ostromir: Yes. Perhaps we should get moving before the weight of my actions catches up to me.
Ostromir: Right. Back to the Outpost.
Ostromir: ...I understand.
Ostromir: So it would seem.
Ostromir: Ever since I heard from the drone trackers of the appearance of large silver golems. I knew. It was only a matter of time.
Ostromir: ...It has... been a while since I have taken a life so... personally.
Ostromir: I do not wish to repeat it again. Some memories are best forgotten.
Ostromir: Look at me. I am miserable. Useless.
Ostromir: I am a world away from home. From my family, if they even still live.
Ostromir: I... I wanted to do my part. And... yes, there was guilt, for the girl.
Ostromir: I trust the Shapeless. The Magesterium is my heart, my home.
Ostromir: But we were responsible for her suffering.
Ostromir: ...Not in so many words. It was a promise to myself.
Ostromir: The Magesterium takes care of their own. Even those displaced by fate.
Ostromir: ...Yes. You are right, of course, Vseslava. Thank you.
Ostromir: I... I will go for a walk. To think. Do not worry, I am sure the drones will be watching me and keeping me out of trouble.
Ostromir: Yes, Hero <Character>?
Ostromir: ...Thank you.
< Message edited by DemonicDarkwraith -- 9/17/2023 17:04:26 >