And so our heroes continue their way up Babel Tower, perhaps only falling thousands of feet a couple more times before reaching the roof. ...Do giant robots have shocks?
Well, they get up there eventually.
And there's nothing there! Ha ha! What a good joke!
That sounds like somebody asking to get thrown from the top of a tower, but before anyone gets any ideas, another giant robot shows up!
The little girl and the giant robot attack!
It's a good thing giant robots only use fuel for hitting things and not for having to line up the same jump six times, or the party would probably be in trouble. For those of you who are unobservant or just have better things to do than remember stuff from the beginning of the game, this giant robot is basically a palette swap of the one that attacked Fei and Bart under the desert while they were parting ways with Spock's dad. Don't go back and check, this narration's screencap wasn't very good. Maybe it'll will fix it someday if it has nothing better to do.
Eventually a giant floating city comes along and breaks up the fight.
Meanwhile, in a less interesting subplot, the Gazel are up to something! They don't have anything better to do.
They are mad that the party has reached Shevat! Geez, didn't they see the huge pain-in-the-ass tower? What jerks! The Gazel now want to destroy Shevat. If the Gazel's plans ever actually worked, there would be no cities left.
There is something in Shevat called an Anima Relic, and the Gazel are concerned that our jerk party is going to align with it before preparations are complete. The Gazel want our heroes to align with it! Just not yet! So they're just going to blow up Shevat and kill everyone, no biggie.
YES, WON'T ANYONE THINK OF THE "ANIMUS"
Oh! Well, all right, then.
Yeah, what about the Shevat gate? There hasn't been any nonsense about gates in like forever!
Oh! Of course! ...Let's just go back to Shevat.
Think hard, Fei.
They indeed wander around for a bit, and they learn that Maria's father was kidnapped by Solaris to build the giant robot that Maria pilots, named Seibzehn, presumably the seventeenth in a series including Iens, Zwie, Drie, and Veir. They took Maria hostage to force him to continue his work -- because if there is one thing these people don't have enough of, it's giant robots! -- but one day he got fed up and shot both Maria and the robot back home, and no one has heard from him since. Good riddance! Let's go check out the city.
The city itself is called Aphel Aura, and it apparently used to be the capital of the country of Shevat, which fought in the war against Solaris five hundred years ago. Now Aphel Aura pretty much is Shevat, and everyone here is vaguely mopey and guilt-ridden. You guys, you live in a floating city, buck the hell up!
Oh dear lord. Never mind. Did you think this game had forgotten about Chu-chu? This game never forgets about Chu-chu. Long after the game has forgotten pretty much anyone who joins the party after Bart, it finds new ways to horrify you with Chu-chu. She has dozens of brethren here in Shevat, and they attempt to regale you with their creation myth, involving something called the "the Wondrous Mambo God."
They escape to a bombed out house and sit in a long dead child's bedroom for a while to get their spirits back up.
Maria shows up and agrees with Fei re: Solarian bastards. Shevat apparently keeps this bombed out shell of a house around so no one will ever forget the war! The war from five hundred years ago! ...That's a well-preserved rocking horse. Maria rounds everyone up so they can go to the palace and meet the queen. On route to the throne room, they run into... Citan's wife!
Is that everyone with a character portrait? That is everyone with a character portrait. For now. It is time to meet Zephyr, the Queen of Shevat!
As you may have surmised by now, Shevat is ridiculous. Zephyr explains that she and a few of her vassals underwent life extension treatments because they just feel so bad about stuff that happened five hundred years ago that they have accepted eternal youth as their punishment. How terrible! It's all because of that man.
Wiseman is one of Zephyr's operatives on the surface, and he has the responsibility of keeping tabs on that man for Shevat.
Five hundred years ago there was a big war between Shevat and Solaris, because Solaris treated the surface dwellers as their slaves and Shevat wanted to free them. It's more of a cold war these days, and Wiseman is supposed to help anyone who can finally destroy Solaris get to Shevat and to the queen. And so here we are!