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11/12/2023 0:44:40   

ArchKnight DragonFable

Threads of Trust

Location: Outpost Yeden -> 2 Right -> Up -> Quests! -> Threads of Trust
Requirements: Completion of For the Fallen
Release Date: November 10th, 2023

Objective: Jaania knows the truth, whether she likes it or not. How will she and Akanthus dance around the broken trust?
Objective completed: So easily are the threads of trust mended... But was there really any choice?

Experience rewarded: 0
Gold rewarded: 0





*In the Rose encampment on The Fissure, Akanthus meets with Jaania in her office.*

Akanthus: ...You asked for me, Lady Jaania?

*Scene shifts to focus on Jaania, who is putting her hands under her chin.*

Jaania: Akanthus.
Jaania: There were so many possibilities. So many potential explanations I saw in the mirror.
Jaania: But I have seen the truth of the device you are so attached to. And from that truth cascades so many others.
Jaania: Of all the possibilities, it appears the reality is that you abused my faith and trust in you.

*Scene shifts to focus on Akanthus before focusing back on Jaania.*

Jaania: ...Tell me it isn't true.
Akanthus: Of course it is true.

*Now furious, Jaania magically casts icicles on her face as it is revealed that Akanthus have abused her trust all along.*

Jaania: No. Lie to me!
Jaania: Spin me a made up fantasy that explains everything—
Akanthus: It is the truth. I used you and your organization to further my own ambitions.
Jaania: ...
Akanthus: And what will you do with that truth?
Akanthus: You cannot contain me. Not with magic. Not by force.

*Jaania hangs her head and closes her eyes as the icicles on her face fades before asking Akanthus for his motives of saving her years ago.*

Jaania: ...Then why?
Jaania: Why did you save me? Why did you protect me back then?
Jaania: Why help me create The Rose?
Akanthus: In you, I saw a kindred spirit. You were finding your place in this world, same as I.
Akanthus: And I saw potential.
Akanthus: While I can do many things on my own, there is a certain... efficiency that can only be achieved with subordinates.

*Jaania continues to ask Akanthus as she switches subjects from saving her to his intentions for the Doom device.*

Jaania: Everything they said back in Swordhaven. Everything he claimed. Is it true?
Jaania: What do you intend to do with that... device of yours?
Akanthus: I will drop it into the Mana Core.
Akanthus: I will no longer be ignored.
Akanthus: Whatever happens after, happens.
Jaania: And if it destroys Lore?
Jaania: Your condition causes you much suffering. But is this really the answer?
Akanthus: If such a trinket destroys the world, then it deserves to be destroyed. But I doubt that would be the outcome.
Akanthus: Even this... Doom that the people of Greenguard fear so much. The Mana Core allows it to flow.
Akanthus: To it, Doom is natural, and I am the abomination.
Akanthus: You have seen the Ateala, yes? Alien to this world, yet still accepted without question.

*Jaania continues to listen about Akanthus' reasons for dropping the Doom device into the Mana Core.*

Akanthus: The Mana Core accepts their mana, accepts their attachment— their interaction— without question, without pause. Naturally.
Akanthus: Beings from the Wastes, the Void, all connected, instantly, their mana hungrily, greedily, accepted. As though they were meant to be.
Akanthus: And yet the Core chooses not to accept me.
Akanthus: Perhaps it just needs to be... Reminded of my presence.
Akanthus: And I intend to secure its attention with the Doom device's payload.

*After listening to Akanthus' story of the Mana Core, Jaania tilts her head on the left.*

Jaania: ...Are you implying that the Mana Core has sentience?
Akanthus: If it does, then it is not doing much thinking.

*Jaania ponders Akanthus' theory of the Mana Core.*

Jaania: If the Mana Core has a will... then...
Jaania: No, such hypotheticals don't matter. Not now.
Jaania: I would do a better job, anyway. And if it is dormant, then it will be all the easier.
Jaania: And when I succeed...
Akanthus: Then there would be no question.
Akanthus: When you reach your lofty goal, when you wrest control of the threads of Destiny—
Akanthus: You could accept me.
Akanthus: You could save me.
Akanthus: Your goals are still my own. Trust me.

*Despite their broken trust, Jaania asks why Akanthus should continue to trust her as she tilts her head to the right.*

Jaania: You want me to trust you now? After all this? And what if I fail?
Akanthus: If you fail, I doubt you'd be in any state to care about what happens next.
Akanthus: Trust yourself.
Jaania: ...
Jaania: And when all this is over— when your suffering finally comes to an end, what then?
Akanthus: ...Then I live. Perhaps I will take up carpentry.

*Jaania and Akanthus glare at each other before Jaania prepares to cast an ice spell on him.*

Jaania: Normally I would freeze you in place here, just to be certain.
Jaania: But we both know that wouldn't work.
Jaania: What if I froze that Doom device of yours instead?
Akanthus: Then I do everything in my considerable power to end your dreams.
Akanthus: We are on the same side here, Lady Jaania.
Akanthus: I simply have a contingency plan.
Jaania: You have betrayed my trust, Akanthus. I cannot abide that.
Akanthus: We are dreamers, you and I.
Akanthus: You have made sacrifices in pursuit of yours.
Akanthus: I made the regrettable sacrifice of your trust in pursuit of mine.
Akanthus: Show me the world you're dreaming of. Give me a place in it.

*Jaania thinks about Akanthus and his plans before deciding to continue to work with him as she is left with no choice.*

Jaania: Very well.

Jaania: On this, we work together.
Jaania: You are dismissed, General Akanthus.

*Akanthus nods to Jaania before leaving her office; after he leaves, Jaania, now exhausted, sits down.*

Jaania: ...As if I had any choice.
Jaania: But still... He is as much a victim as anyone else.
Jaania: The twisted systems that brought him about will be dismantled.
Jaania: Whether the Core has a will of its own or not, I will supplant it.
Jaania: ...
Jaania: There can be no margin for error.

Jaania: It must be perfect.
Jaania: Hesperrhodos, fetch me some blank scrolls and ink.

*Scene fades to black.*

  • Complete Quest

    Next Up: The Arrival

    < Message edited by DemonicDarkwraith -- 12/9/2023 18:28:35 >
  • DF  Post #: 1
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