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The brides have disappeared! The Savior and Lippy infiltrate an odd castle to find the girls while they work out a way to get out themselves. Full of odd traps and even odder hosts, the girls work their way through the castle. The bridal fair must go on!
|The Disappearing Bride|
|1||Where Are We?||3||3|
|2||Searching the Area||3||3|
|The Runaway Bride|
|4||Don't Say it!||5||5|
|The True Bride|
|Lippy||So you say the ring emitted a bright white light at the moment that Sara vanished, and that the same thing happened to each of the Kanonnos?|
|Kanonnos' Wedding Planner||Exactly. Right after they put on their rings, they were enveloped in a white light and disappeared.|
|Lippy|| Well, based on the magical residue and the eyewitness accounts, we're clearly dealing with a teleportation arte here. |
I would conjecture that something triggered the latent magical energy contained within those rings.
|Host||This can't be happening... The bridal fair is beginning today, yet the brides and dresses are gone!|
|Lippy|| While I am sympathetic to your plight as well... |
...Exactly, (user)! Our primary concern is for the safety of our missing brides!
Great Savior! Let us see if anyone in town can provide some insight about what's happened here!
|Sara||Urrrggghh... What the...? Where am I...?|
|Sara||You guys are here too?!|
|Pasca||Yep. We put on our wedding rings and were engulfed in a bright white light. When we came to, well... here we are!|
|Grassvalley||Yeah, wherever this is. What is going on here?|
|Earhart||Well, let's take a good look around. I don't know what else we can do at this point.|
|Grassvalley||Right. Let's give it a thorough search.|
|Sara||Sounds like a plan to me!|
|Pasca||Yet another door that's sealed up tight!|
|Earhart||And we're still not any closer to figuring out where we are...|
|Grassvalley||Well, from the way this chamber was built, I assume it's inside a castle. But it seems like a really ancient one. I wonder if anyone even lives here?|
|Sara||Yeah, there's a definite ancient castle vibe here. But I doubt it's abandoned. Look how clean everything is!|
|Earhart||She's right! I don't see a spec of dust anywhere!|
|Pasca||Then someone must be living here.|
|Grassvalley||EXCUUUUUSE MEEEE! HELLOOOOOOO?! IS ANYBODY HEEEEEEEEEERE?|
|Sara||Did you guys hear that?|
|？？？？||Ah, there you are. I was a bit worried when I didn't find you in the room with the portal.|
|Grassvalley||I hear a voice, but... from where?!|
|[A heavy door opens.]|
|？？？？||Welcome. My master has instructed me to extend you every hospitality.|
|Sara||Wh-What the heck?!|
|？？？？||What?! There... There are four of you?! We were expecting a single bride! How could this have happened?!|
|Grassvalley||You're asking us? You're the one who's got some explaining to do! You can start with... that.|
|？？？？||That? Whatever do you mean?|
|Earhart||Umm... I think she's trying to ask... What ARE you, exactly...?|
|？？？？||Ah, forgive me! Where are my manners?|
|Stewart||My name is Stewart, and I am privileged to serve the lord of this castle.|
|Sara||Yeah, Stewart... She wasn't asking about your name...|
|Stewart|| Oh...? Ah, yes, of course! Again, I must beg your understanding. |
Your arrival here was quite unexpected, and I have been in something of a tizzy making the necessary preparations.
So I apologize for my appearance. In my haste, I've not had a chance to make myself presentable. I will change into formal attire shortly.
|Sara||Yeah, it isn't really your clothing that's the issue here.|
|Pasca||I'll be more specific. So, uh... You're a skeleton. What's up with that?|
|Stewart|| Ah, yes. I must admit that I am indeed looking somewhat skeletal these days. |
You must understand that my master and I have been waiting a very long time for your arrival. I have lost some weight over the years.
|Earhart||You've been waiting... for us?|
|？？？？||But of course, my beautiful brides! I have waited and longed for this day!|
|Stewart||Master! Were you unable to resist coming down to meet the brides yourself?|
|Grassvalley||This is... your master...|
|Master||Welcome to my castle. Or as I prefer to call it... My love nest!|
|Sara||Somebody tell me what the heck is going on here!|
| It was a promise made long ago. |
There was a man who played a key role in the history of this town.
His name was Flint Blastard.
He was a deeply talented metalworker.
And he developed a way to integrate alchemy into his creations.
His masterworks shined with a luster that could never be achieved with conventional means.
The wealthy and powerful leapt at any chance to buy the rings and necklaces he crafted.
Propelled from rags to riches, he bought a castle outside of town and indulged his every desire.
But there was one problem. A single obstacle that stood ever in his way...
|Stewart||He was not an attractive man.|
|Flint||Did you really have to tell them that part, Stewart?!|
|Sara||Really...? That was it?|
|Stewart|| His face was quite distinctive. |
He was often described as a cross between a koala bear and a tuna.
|Earhart||I... cannot even begin to imagine...|
|Flint||Argh! Must everyone say that? Is it really that terribly bad?|
|Grassvalley||I don't know how you used to look, but... it hardly matters now, right?|
|Pasca||I guess I could see how your face would have been... unique. You know, if you still had one.|
|Flint turned to the city's mayor for counsel.|
|Mayor|| I understand, Flint. And I'm confident that if we work together, we can find you a bride. |
First, you have to get the girls in town excited about marriage. Maybe use some of your wealth to build the town a huge, beautiful church? That'd do it!
Next, you need a good ring to attract a bride. You're a great craftsman, and you should go all out──make this ring your magnum opus!
Hmm, but a single ring won't really pull in the crowds...
Hm? Oh, nothing, just thinking out loud. Anyway, how about you make a whole set? Four rings!
You build that church, and bring me those rings, and I'll find you a bride here in town.
We'll get her dressed in a beautiful gown, one of your rings on her finger. And then... she'll be yours!
|Stewart|| Flint took the mayor's words to heart, did his part, and set about waiting for his bride. |
Once, he spent the whole day fantasizing about what sort of breakfast his future bride would make for him.
On another day, he made a list of nearly 2,000 women he thought might serve as a suitable bride.
He was like that all the time. What do you think about that?
Pretty pathetic, right?
|Flint|| Spare us your editorializing, Stewart! |
I know it was pathetic! But I was excited! In love with the idea of being in love, if you will.
Excited with the thought of a warm and cheery blushing bride...
...I could call my own!
| The mayor never had any intention of honoring his promise to Flint. |
He used the church Flint built and the rings he crafted to bring in visitors and expand the town.
Flint sent letter after letter asking after his bride, to which the mayor always replied, "I'm still searching, just wait a little longer."
Convinced that the delay was a sign of the thoroughness of the mayor's search, Flint waited patiently.
The unflagging excitement he felt about his bride allowed him to transcend the normal life cycle of a human...
...and keep waiting until this day. 500 years later.
|Lippy|| It sounds as though the long-simmering passion that Flint infused into his rings is responsible for this. |
Should a woman in a bridal gown put on the ring, it would transport her to him so that they could get married.
We're lucky to have found an unofficial town historian who could shed so much light on the history of those rings.
From this, we can easily deduce that the ladies have been transported to Flint's old castle outside of town!
We must rescue them, Great Savior! Let us hurry!
|Flint||Let's not wait any longer. Let's marry immediately, my brides.|
|Flint|| Oh, I know what you're thinking. But don't worry! This castle's chapel is more than adequate for the ceremony. |
And I wouldn't subject you to anything so crass as a mass wedding! I'll marry each of you in turn, with a proper ceremony!
|Sara||I see... So that's where this is going.|
|Flint||That was the promise that was made to me, so long ago. There's no getting out of it now!|
|Pasca||Okay guys... I think we've learned what we need to know.|
|Earhart||Yeah! We know that this castle has to be near the town!|
|Grassvalley||Near enough that we can still make it back in time for the bridal fair this evening!|
|Sara||And more importantly than that...|
|Everyone||I don't want to marry that skeleton!|
|Sara||So escape it is!|
|Flint|| Hmm? Wait! What are you doing?! There's no escape from here! |
I've had 500 years to fill this castle with traps! You'll never make it to the exit!
Abandon this foolishness and marry me, if you value your lives!
|[High-heeled footsteps fade into the distance.]|
|Flint||Damn it all! Stewart, pursue my brides and escort them to the chapel! I'll make the wedding preparations.|
|Flint||Has a cat got your tongue, Stewart? Speak!|
|Stewart||Very well... As you wish, Master Flint.|
|──A wooded trail near the castle──|
|Lippy|| There it is, Great Savior! The castle at the top of the hill! That's surely where they're being held. |
I shudder to imagine what horrors they've been subjected to in there...
We must rescue them as quickly as possible!
|──Meanwhile, inside the castle──|
|[Sara swings her blade in a wide arc.]|
|Earhart||Well done, Sara!|
|Grassvalley||These so-called "traps" of Flint's are a little ridiculous. First a giant bird cage, and now a giant bug net?|
|Pasca||I'm just glad they aren't anything dangerous. If we got hurt, or these dresses got stained, it would be terrible news for the bridal fair!|
|Earhart||That's a good point. Your dress has a pretty long trail, Sara. Is it slowing you down any?|
|Sara||I'm managing so far! How about you, Pasca?|
|Pasca|| Yeah, I'm getting by. I can't help but envy you, Earhart. You could run laps in that mini-dress if you wanted to! |
In fact, I picked that one because I thought it would look summery and kinda sporty. How right I was!
|Sara||Well, it was a great choice! And not just because of the mobility. It fits your style perfectly.|
|Earhart||Thanks. I'm really liking Grassvalley's. The autumn colors give it a real air of calm and refinement!|
|Grassvalley||Do you think so? I was worried that I wouldn't be able to pull this look off.|
|Sara||You're killing it, girl! It took my breath away the second I saw you!|
|Grassvalley||Thanks, Sara! I like how Pasca's is evocative of a field of spring wildflowers.|
|Sara||The long trail makes it look like she's floating down the hall. A perfect fit for Pasca's vibe!|
|Pasca||Why did you decide to go with the classic white, Sara?|
|Sara||Believe me, I tried all the others, but... I dunno. The traditional style just felt right to me, I guess?|
|Pasca||Yeah, probably because it was the one that got the biggest reaction from (user)!|
|Grassvalley||You're so transparent, Sara!|
|Sara||You're still teasing me about that? Is this really the time?|
|Earhart||We're just jealous, Sara. I wish I'd had a guy to drool over me as I picked my dress.|
|Grassvalley||Yeah, having to go stag did take a little of the fun out of it.|
|Pasca||I know! I wish it hadn't worked out that way...|
|Sara||Aww, guys. I'm sorry!|
|Earhart||Oh, Sara! C'mere!|
|Sara||Oh! You guys!|
|[The girls continue chattering about their dresses.]|
|Stewart||How nice that you can still find time for girl talk in the middle of your escape.|
|Sara||Huh? St-Stewart! Oh──that's right! We were escaping!|
|Stewart|| I can see that you share my master's enthusiasm for weddings. |
Will you not allow me to fulfill my duty to my master, and escort you to the chapel? He's really quite adamant about this.
|Pasca||Sorry, pal, but no way! Let's get out of here, girls!|
|Stewart||So young and energetic. Alas, that won't be enough.|
|Sara||Huh?! Stewart's gone!|
|Stewart|| It's known as the "shiden" technique. It's one of the foundations of my martial arts training. |
Now, this technique...
|Stewart|| ...Is a method of attacking pressure points in a way that causes the victim to lose consciousness. |
It's an arte I learned when I was a member of a secret brotherhood of assassins, long before I served my current master.
|Grassvalley||This... can't be happening...|
|Stewart|| Can't it? I don't recall presenting myself as being an inept fighter. You mustn't judge your opponents on their external appearances. |
Well, to be fair, I am a skeleton, and I understand how that might inspire certain assumptions.
Nevertheless, ladies, you have much to learn.
I'm pleased that I'm still able to hit those pressure points. It has been a while since I've had cause to use my combat artes.
The only pressure points I've had to hit in the last few centuries are when I'm giving my master back rubs...
|Sara||What would a... back rub... even do... for a skeleton...?|
|Stewart|| And now to take the master's sleeping brides to the chapel. |
Is this really what he wants...?
|When I woke up...|
| I was seated at the church altar, my arms bound behind the chair. |
Looking around, I saw the Kanonnos similarly bound amidst the pews.
|Flint||You've awakened at last, my bride! You shall be the first.|
|Flint||Don't be that way, my dear. This is exactly what you agreed to when you wore that dress and my ring!|
|Sara||I didn't agree to this! I didn't know anything about the ring!|
|Flint|| I see... I'm sorry to hear that. Nevertheless, we will be wed. |
If I were to let you go, who knows how long it would be before another bride comes along?
|Grassvalley||This isn't fair!|
|Stewart|| You are correct. It is not fair. But I hope that one day, you will come to understand my master's predicament. |
In his zeal to wed, Lord Flint made a lot of mistakes that cannot be unmade. He's backed into something of a corner.
|Earhart||That's no reason to drag us into this!|
|Pasca||Mr. Blastard, is this really what you want? A loveless marriage with unwilling brides? There's nothing warm or cheery about this!|
|Flint||Once we're married, I will find a way to win your hearts, no matter how long it takes!|
|Earhart||That is not going to happen!|
|Flint||Now, let us begin! I, Lord Flint Blastard, take this woman to be my lawfully wedded wife!|
|Sara||I'm not vowing anything to you, creep! The Gods will never condone this!|
|Flint|| The Gods know how long I've waited for this! After several hundred years of suffering, they'll forgive me for forcing the issue! |
Now that we've made our intentions clear, it is time to seal our love with a kiss!
|Sara||GET AWAY FROM MEEEEEEEEE!!!|
| It came at me then... |
Straight at my lips...
A fleshless, puckering skull.
The situation was beyond insane, and I was in a complete panic.
A scream burst forth from my lips...
|？？？||Hold it right there!|
|The bang of the door swinging open echoed throughout the room.|
|Lippy||Even if the Gods were to forgive this farce, the Great Savior and I most certainly will not!|
|It was Lippy, and... Clad in an ivory-white tuxedo...|
|Lippy||At your service, Lady Sara!|
|Flint||Who the heck...?!|
|Lippy|| Now! I will tend to the Kanonnos! Great Savior, rescue Lady Sara! |
|Grassvalley||Thank you, Lippy!|
| (user) leapt up to the altar and cut me free. |
"Sorry I'm late," he said.
Hearing the relief in his voice...
Made me feel so very, very happy. And so very, very safe.
|Sara||Thanks, (user)! You're just in time!|
|Flint||I don't know who you are, but I'm quite sure that you were not invited! You will pay for ruining my wedding!|
|Lippy||That should be the Great Savior's line! My Shattering Paw arcane arte will send you flying out this chapel window for ruining their beautiful moment!|
|Pasca||Whoa, I've never seen this side of Lippy before! He's a total badass!|
|Earhart|| (user), be careful! That skeleton's not the one you need to worry about! The other one is like some sorta ninja master! |
The one over... huh?
|Stewart||Now I understand... So this is what they mean by "true love"...|
|Grassvalley||Um...? What's the deal, Stewart? Aren't you going to fight? You're just gonna gaze into space and rub your chin?|
|Earhart||Uh, well, anyway, here's your chance! Take out that other one and let's get the heck out of here!|
|Flint||NOOOOO! No one's going anywhere!!!|
|Lippy||Now's our chance! Everyone, let's get out of here!|
|Flint||Urrrrggghhh... Nooooo! You can't leave! If I can't marry, then I don't even care what happens!|
|Lippy||What did he just take out of his pocket? Some sort of magical artifact...?!|
|Flint||It's my greatest trap──the detonator to a magical energy bomb! I will bury everyone here alive!|
|Pasca||WHAT?! What happened to all the cute little bug-net type traps?!|
|Flint|| In my centuries of idle time, I've made a wide variety of traps! |
There's no stopping me now! If I don't get to live in marital bliss, then no one can!
|Lippy||Dear me! He seems truly desperate!|
|Sara||This doesn't look good...|
|Stewart||Master Flint, please. Put down that detonator.|
|Flint||St-Stewart! What did you just...|
|Stewart||Master Flint... I've taken the liberty of disassembling all of the detonators.|
|Stewart||It's another arte I learned long ago. I am pleased that my body still seems to remember it.|
|Flint||What are you doing?! You're supposed to serve me, Stewart!|
|Stewart|| Yes, my lord. I'm doing just that. |
When I stumbled upon the dark path I had chosen to walk, you found me, adrift and in shambles, and offered a helping hand. I vowed to serve you forevermore.
As your servant, I suppose it is my duty to heed you without objection. Nevertheless, I must speak my mind.
Master Flint, you are in the wrong here. If you would marry these girls under duress, you'd only bring them misery.
|Stewart|| Marriage is supposed to bring joy to both parties. |
A marriage that pleases only one party is no marriage at all. Forgive me for not impressing this upon you sooner.
|Flint|| You think I don't know that, Stewart? Of course I know that! |
But I waited so long for my happiness that all the flesh has melted off my bones! And no one has come for me!
I just... wanted to be loved...
|Stewart|| But Master Flint── you have been loved all along! |
I will bring you the joy you seek.
Won't you do the same for me?
|Stewart||That moment, when the door swung open and Sara's friends came charging in, I witnessed the power love has to make miracles happen.|
|Sara||Wait, what now?!|
|Stewart|| We may be lord and servant, with different backgrounds and different stations. but if we have love for each other, we can overcome that! |
So if you could find it in yourself to love me, despite our differences, and despite our gap in ages... You would make me a happy woman indeed.
|Earhart||Whoa whoa whoa WHOA! WHAT?! Stewart, you... You're...|
|Grassvalley||You're a woman?!|
|Stewart|| What? Of course I... Ah, forgive me. It has been such a busy day that I've not had a chance to do my make-up. |
I can understand how with a face like this, you might have confused me for a man...
|Sara||Oh,n-no! You look great, really. It's just, your name... sounds kinda... masculine, so...|
|Flint|| Stewart is her family name. Her given name is... |
Meina. Meina Linrest Stewart.
|Lippy||Oh. That has the quite the ring to it!|
|Meina・Linrest・Stewart||Master Flint... That's the first time you've ever called me that.|
|Flint|| Meina, you... after all this time, you've taught me what love truly is. Looking back, it was so obvious... You've always been there for me! |
You've always stood by this freakish koala-and-tuna-faced man.
|Meina・Linrest・Stewart||That's never bothered me. I learned in my assassin training never to judge a man by appearances.|
|Lippy||Perhaps that would be a more touching sentiment if you left off the "assassin" part...|
|Flint||I've been such a fool. Happiness has been within my reach all along!|
|Meina・Linrest・Stewart||Oh, Master Flint...!|
| And so, there at the chapel, Flint and Meina pledged their undying (undead?) devotion to each other. |
And became man and wife forevermore.
Now, back to our story...
|Meina・Linrest・Stewart||Forgive us for all the trouble we've caused you.|
|Flint||We'll take care of each other now, and live quietly in happy matrimony.|
|Sara||Well, uh... all's well that ends well, right? We're happy for you!|
|Flint||Please, accept this by way of my apology for what I put you through.|
|Flint|| My spare wedding ring. I made a fifth one in case there was something wrong with one of the others. |
It's one of my finest creations. I'm sure it will serve you well.
|Meina・Linrest・Stewart||The power that once tainted it has been cleansed away, so you can wear it without worry.|
|Sara||Thank you! We'll cherish this.|
|Flint||I wish there was more I could do to make amends for this...|
|Grassvalley|| No, that's okay! I think we'll still be able to make it back to town in time for the bridal fair, so no harm done! |
But more importantly, we got to witness a moment of pure romance, and it was all thanks to you.
|Sara|| A moment of pure romance...? |
Oh, of course! The marriage between Flint and Meina!
|Grassvalley||Huh? Oh, sure, that was cute. But I'm talking straight-out-of- a-novel romantic here.|
|Earhart||Oh my gosh, I know, right? The gorgeous maiden, tied and bound, and just as her captor goes in to kiss her...|
|Pasca||The door slams open to reveal a man in a white tuxedo, and (user) saves the day! I almost swooned.|
|Earhart||It was like a fairy tale come to life. My heart was racing! Oh, Sara... I'm so happy for you!|
|Sara||Wh-Whoa, hey! Hey! Come on guys! Not this again!|
|Earhart||Oooh! Sara's angry!|
|[The girls begin chattering loudly amongst themselves.]|
|Lippy||Dear me! Haven't we had enough drama for one day?|
| Finally, the group bade their farewells, and rushed back to town. |
They arrived at the bridal fair just in time for it to begin as scheduled.
|Host||My friends, I'm proud to present to you our historic church, and some of the stunning dresses our town has to offer!|
|(user) and I waited our turn back stage.|
|Sara|| Not our smoothest mission, but at least we made it back for the fair! |
Pasca should be finishing up out there soon...
| I peak out at the crowd through a gap in the curtain. |
Our friends are flashing subtle waves to someone in the audience.
Hee hee... I bet I know who's here!
|Sara|| Looks like we're up! This is so nerve-wracking! |
But I'll do my best.
Oh, but... before we go out there, there's something I wanted to say to you, (user).
Thank you for rescuing me. You were really awesome back there, (user)!
| I said it in what I meant to be a natural tone, but I felt the flush on my cheeks. |
I wonder if (user) noticed?
"Thanks," he says.
The smile he flashes me is wide and bright, but a little bashful.
I smile back.
I think back to what Grassvalley called "a moment of pure romance."
It would be yet another treasured memory from this unforgettable adventure.
The time we all got to wear beautiful dresses for a mission.
The time our captors fell in love.
And of course...
The time you rushed in to save me.
The gentle smile on your face.
The time we walked down the aisle together...
...and the way it made me feel.
I want to continue walking like this forever...
With you always at my side.
- Duration: 6/3 (Fri) 08:00 ~ 6/25 (Sun) 07:59 PST