Suikoden II : Part 14
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In the first installment of this marathon session with the fabulous Yaoi Army, Jowy and Adolf killed Adolf's dad, Barry defeated and then recruited Kiba and Klaus after they found out about Adolf's dead dad, and Barry visited the Toran Republic, once home to PUGGY!!! and his merry Lubrication Army, but now home to President Toolshed Lepant and his personal gallery of paintings of PUGGY!!! having sex with a horse. We pick up with Barry outside the war room, like we do in nearly every recap, on his way to let Shu exposit all over his face.
When Barry walks in, he sees the important people circle has opened up to include Kiba, Klaus, and Valeria. And Waylon is still invited, for some reason. "Lord Barry, glad to see you're well," Shu coos. "It seems you were successful in forming an alliance with the Toran Republic." And Shu is going to hear all about the humiliations he suffered to make that happen. Valeria introduces herself, though half the room knows her already or met her earlier. Bear and Flik are all happy she's there, unlike Barry. "I'm grateful," Flik says. "We've got a real chance to win now." That was kind of the entire point of the alliance, right? Anyway, Apple rains on everybody's parade. "Don't be so sure," she tells them. "According to my information, most of the Highland Army has already left Muse and is headed this way. [Adolf Hitler]'s 1st Company and Jowy Atreides' 3rd Company... Plus the 4th Company, made up of General Kiba's former troops and reinforcements from Harmonia. That's a force of 50,000 troops." Well, maybe Apple needs to get out there and hang up some posters or something, instead of being such a Negative Nancy.
Kiba says, "Calling for reinforcements from Harmonia...it looks like [Adolf] is planning on finishing this in one decisive stroke." One stroke? That's no fun at all. And Klaus mentions that, though the two nations are friendly, Adolf probably had to suck dick to get those Harmonian troops for this deployment. "And as for our side," Apple goes on, "even if you add General Kiba's soldiers and the reinforcements from Toran, we've only got 20,000 soldiers." But in the briefing right before Barry left to go grovel in front of Lepant, which netted him 5000 men, Apple said they had 25,000. What the fuck happened to those 10,000 soldiers while Barry was gone?
Well, whatever happened to our thousands of fucking soldiers, Shu was going to have to come up with some amazingly creative plan anyway, and he encourages Barry to go rest while he does just that. "Worrying doesn't help things anyway," Bear adds, like doing nothing is a viable solution.
After a black screen, we find Barry in his bedroom at night. Outside, Nanami and Lassie are having a powwow. "Oh, Barry," Nanami says, like she was in the middle of telling Lassie about how he used to wet the bed. "What is it? I thought you had gone to sleep." Lassie hops around, spilling ellipses all over the floor. "Barry............. How did all this happen......" Nanami wonders as she picks up some of Lassie's spill. "When it was just the 3 of us, you, me and Granpa Genkaku, living in Kyaro.......I couldn't have imagined any of this happening....." Well, obviously, but a lot has happened since then. That's how life works, Nanami. But what she's really reaching for here is the Shared Destiny Mallet. "Grandpa Genkaku was the hero of the City-State...." she says, "and Barry is leader of the Yaoi Army....... It's like some kind of bad dream...." Oh, and while she's rooting around, here's the Sore Subject of Destined Conflict Hammer. ".....Now we really have to fight against him.......fight against Jowy....." Lassie punctuates at this, and Barry leaves Nanami to the ultimately pointless task of lying to Lassie to make her feel better.
Sadly, Shu is busy at his desk, and wants Barry to just go to bed for his big day. Downstairs, Klaus is hanging out with his dad, which is not something Barry is into. And since Camus and Miklotov are in the barracks, the corridors to which are being guarded by some cockblocking Suikoclones, Barry just grumbles to himself and returns to bed, where he has a terrible dream about Lepant railing Jowy, who's wearing a white wedding dress, underneath their Makeout Tree in Kyaro, while Muku Ranger Red watches from the branches and sheds a single tear.
|That's what Barry says when he runs into any woman.
As usual, whenever Barry sleeps, the Highland villains plot in their tents, twirl their mustaches, or murder kings with poisoned ejaculate. In Adolf's tent, Leon Silverberg tells the assembled officers that they'll be in South Window soon. How soon, really, if they're having a conversation in a tent? Shouldn't they be riding horses or something? But these guys do love their little tent chats. "Our best strategy would be to capture Radat, then South Window and then finally HoYay Castle," Leon duhs. But Adolf is all about the bold strokes, and has the chafing to prove it, so he says, "No. First we strike at their heart. Destroy their headquarters and the war will be over." Leon and his mustache disagree, but he just mumbles that Lord Adolf knows best. Jowy asks that his own company be the vanguard, which Adolf grants, but a new person in bright blue robes and a giant blue hat says, "I also will accompany you. We came from the distant land of Harmonia and my soldiers are bored from the long journey." I like how this guy feels the need to tell Adolf where he came from, like he doesn't know. Anyway, this is Sasarai, and other than his goofy blue getup, the notable thing is he looks like Luc. Like, a lot. He doesn't have Luc's permanent bitchface, but they are otherwise identical. More on this as it develops in another game entirely!
The next morning, Nanami is waiting outside Barry's door, with a pretty insincere apology for her comments last night. "I guess......we have to fight," she says, like it's been pulled out of her with a crowbar. "But.......be careful, Barry." Nah, he'll go charge naked into some spears. Actually, that sounds great.
|I read this in Mr. Slave's voice.
What Barry is not going to do, at least right now, is head back into that war room to get emotionally kicked in the nads again by Apple's terrible math. Instead, he goes downstairs and puts together a truly terrible party, including Cocko, Gengen, and Flik. Ugh. Sorry, Flik. With that murderer's row, he teleports to Lakewest and enters the inn. In one corner, a young man with a gay turquoise bandanna and a young redhead lady are having an argument, which you can tell because the girl's sprite keeps hopping up and down in agitation. The girl is egging on her obviously reluctant boyfriend and asking him if he's a real man. "If you want to become a real warrior quickly, this is the only way!" Of course, this rare hetero couple is Hix and Tengaar, and even though Hix saved her from a goddamn vampire, she's still spent the last three years apparently harping on him being an unmanly wimp. "But Tengaar," Hix whines, because he still is the wettest noodle in the universe, heroics aside, "you're talking about intentionally putting ourselves in danger..." They bicker some more, and Tengaar pulls out the totally manipulative "But you'll protect me, of course! Won't you?" and poor Hix has no comeback.
They subside, allowing Barry to join their conversation. Flik pulls out of his ass for this, so Tengaar can squeak, "Eh? Is that really you, Mr. Flik!? You're ALIVE? What happened?" Flik just mumbles about how Bear almost got them killed again. Since I haven't commented on this yet: I find it difficult to believe that Bear and Flik got out of Dodge at the end of the first game and no one knew where they'd gone or that they were alive. They didn't even stop at a fucking inn on the way out of town? Really? And why would they even bother just fucking off like that? Didn't they want to see which of the Buttsex Knights was going to pop out of the cake at their Successful Coup d'Etat celebration? I bet that party was like the end of Return of the Jedi, except with naked dudes instead of Ewoks.
Anyway. You can see how excited I am to continue this Hix and Tengaar thing. Once Hix too has gushed about Flik not being dead, Flik replies, "Hey, don't get all mushy on me! More importantly, Hix, are you on your ritual journey of manhood?" Hee hee. Hix answers, "Y...yes," because just saying "Yes" is too scary. But Flik just says, "Good luck!" and doesn't offer any manly advice at all, like the proper knot to tie a bandanna in. Don't be so withholding, Flik. And then Hix asks pointedly, "Mr. Flik, when will you be coming home to the village?" And Flik just stammers away, because he knows his and Bear's love would never be accepted in the absurdly straight Warrior's Village. And then Tengaar adds, get this, "Shh, Hix, don't tease him! Mr. Flik still hasn't finished his own journey to manhood!" Ooh. Ouch. Flik just says, "...Gimme a break, okay?" and doesn't add that he has completed it, lots of times, if the journey to manhood is code for the short walk to Bear's bedroom.
Of course, Barry didn't come all the way here just to annoy Flik. He could have left him at home with Nina for that. Tengaar chirps, "Well, Hix, let's go. Follow the road to the South to get to Kobold Village. Let's not dawdle!" And with that, she walks out of the inn. Hix looks like he wants to stay with Barry and Flik, and maybe escape to their gay lakeside paradise, but at the last minute he runs out after her. Flik just reflects, "They haven't changed a bit." Yeah, it's actually a little disturbing how true that is. Shouldn't Tengaar have dyed her hair black and started quoting Tori Amos lyrics in casual conversation by now?
With those two gone for now, Barry turns to the other Profile Person in the inn, who I somehow haven't mentioned before now, possibly because I was trying to pretend he didn't exist. This man with skunk-striped hair, a wife beater, and purple capris is named Shilo. He doesn't play with "brats," he says. "But you seem different," he says, looking Barry over. "You're not like the rest of the those snotty-nosed brats. What do ya want with me?" But Barry is too a snotty-nosed brat! He's just a kid! Everyone says so! Barry only whimpers a little as he asks him to join up with the Yaoi Army, like this motherfucker is just the recruit they need to put them over the top against King Adolf. His reaction to Barry's request? "Huh? Join your group??? What group??? The Yaoi Army, eh???? A leader eh?????" The fact that this man was in the same village as Tetsu cannot be a coincidence.
After all those question marks, it should be no surprise that Shilo questions whether Barry really is the leader of the Yaoi Army. I hate myself for typing that. "Okay, here's what I'll do. A competition!!!!!!" cries Shilo, probably alarming the poor innkeepers. "If you win 5000 potch or more from me, I'll join your group!!!! Okay? Let's do it!!!!!" And Barry doesn't even get a chance to agree or run away screaming before the dreaded music of The Game That Shall Not Be Named cues up and Shilo's fucking dice cup is sitting in front of him.
Not only does Shilo have the same dice cup with the same fucking chip in it that Tai Ho has, but his dialogue throughout the game, which would be easy to change, is identical. So basically it's like playing Tai Ho, if he had a mid-life crisis, bleached his hair, hit the gym a little more, and put some pants on. To my shock, after an early loss in which I rolled a 1, Shilo rolls that score in three straight games and Barry easily hits the 5000 potch mark. "He he," Shilo chuckles, "I'm not surprised. Ya gotta be pretty damn lucky to become leader of whole army!" Yes, Barry is so lucky. I mean, yes, good ending and all that, but Barry hardly considers it much of a victory when the reward is this dickweasel hanging out in his castle and eating all his food. Shilo, freeloader stars in his eyes, says formally to Barry, "Okay, a promise is a promise. I'll join your band of merry fellows. Glad you'll have me!!!" They'd be a lot merrier if he could put Waylon, Lawrence of Assholia, all the girls, and anyone with a fucking dice cup on a raft and set them adrift.
With that surely crucial member of the army taken care of, Barry leads his party south to Kobold Village. When he enters town, he immediately finds Hix and Tengaar again, staring at everything like the idiotic tourists they are. Tengaar looks around at all the drooling dog people and tells her man, "Look, look, this is it! This must be Kobold Village!" No, I think it's Duck Village. Christ. Hix begs, "H... Hold on.... Can't we just rest for a bit?" like the inn isn't literally two feet away from them. Tengaar pulls the Real Man card on him again, and he can only complain that she made him carry all kinds of unnecessary heavy luggage. She replies, "Well we might need [all my shoes and five different brands of moisturizer] for the Test. C'mon let's go." Look, I'm really trying to find some nuance here and not throw up my hands and label them as the Bitchy Overbearing Harpy and the Dopey Henpecked Husband, but Jesus Christ. They're not really giving me anything else to go on here. As if to prove my point, Tengaar takes off without him again, and Hix wails a bit and runs after her again.
After buying a couple Ancient Texts for cheap at the trading post, Barry finds these two walking stereotypes at the back of the village. "This must be the Chief's house," Tengaar says, but at least this time she's not standing in front of a sign that says "CHIEF'S HOUSE" in big block lettering. "Don't you understand, Hix? This is where you take the Test of the Unicorn!" Wait, the test she wants him to take to prove his heterosexual manliness is called the Test of the Unicorn? Did they miss the signup deadline for the Test of the Sugarplum Fairy Queen?