XENOGEARS: A ROPE OF ROBOTS (part thirty-four)

When we last saw Fei, he had gotten himself arrested. Again! He is a talented lad. Is he talented enough to make his way through Solaris by himself and rescue the rest of the party from the evil clutches of, uh, whoever the hell is in charge here? Krelian? Probably Krelian. But yeah, no, Fei is not. Even the guard who has arrested him thinks he is pretty stupid.


Hey, but I can catch a fish with my bare hands!


And yet you cannot spot one of your own party members in disguise!


Ta da!


Oh. Yeah, you got me, man.


I saw Bart during that broadcast of the Emperor's speech, and then I heard that an intruder had been reported in the first class district! But I did not hear about the intruder being captured. I assumed it was you and waited for you here, since the best way to get into where the prisons are is through a dust chute in the third citizen's level! Are you impressed?


No. Because if you aren't a Solarian soldier, then we still can't get through the scanner!


Oh, that should not be a problem. Just stand very close to me as we walk through it.

They do so, exactly the way Fei did with Elly before. It takes Fei like a whole thirty seconds to question this.


Heeeeey, wait a second. You're still not a Solarian soldier!


There is a very good explanation for this! I just... seem to have left it in my other pants.


YOU DON'T HAVE ANY OTHER PANTS

Whatever, Fei, you do not have all day to stand around discussing the huge gaping holes in Doc's story! You have to rescue Bart! And some other guys, maybe, time permitting. They backtrack through the pointless dungeon between levels and make it back to the slave quarters, where they locate this glorified security flaw they keep calling a dust chute. It is suspiciously huge.

Solaris has a serious dust problem, apparently.


So how does this thing work?


Hm. It appears to want a credit card.


...I guess you left that in your imaginary other pants, too.


So it would seem.

Bummer! They are up dust creek without a paddle. Before they have a chance to abandon this silly plan and think of a better one, though, they are saved!


Hey guys! Did you miss me?


Yes! I thought of nothing else the whole three minutes we were apart!


But why are you here?

Elly is here because she threw a fit at her parents, who sighed long-sufferingly and let her go. The audience is even treated to a flashback where her dad gives her his credit card so she can engage in some amateur identity-theft. Elly either has the the best parents in the world or the stupidest. Perhaps in this case that isn't mutually exclusive. Go commit mutiny and be back in time for dinner, young lady!

There is also some business with Krelian asking that Elly be delivered to him personally. Her father is rightfully creeped out and pushes her out the door. It rarely turns out well when the ruling power asks for your daughter without explanation.


It must be the Ministry!


Hey, yeah, I think that's what my father said! What's the Ministry?


You will find out.


Okay!

Fei and Elly have clearly missed some very important hints here, but that's all right. Citan still has ample opportunity to be extremely creepy and unhelpful! They turn on the dust chute and get sucked into the innards of Solaris's air filtering system, which sounds pretty fatal just by itself, but leveling up covers that, it seems. They end up in a big warehouse filled with canned food.


I don't know about you guys, but I haven't eaten since those furries rescued us.


Yeah, I could sure go for some potted meat product right about now.


Let's tear open some of these cans with our bare hands and eat!


Doc, aren't you going to have any?


No, I will just stand here and stare at you pointedly while you eat it.


Okay!

Yes, everyone, sit down in the middle of nowhere and eat some meat you found in a can! What is the worst thing it possibly could be? Ha ha!


Delicious! And the label is covered with people faces! Yes, this must be people food.

Elly and Fei finish eating, and they continue on their way. The next room over is the canning factory, where many gross blobs of meat are going by on conveyor belts.


Well, this is making me hungry all over again!


Before we go into the next room, where the meat is prepared, I just want you two to remember one thing: You ate that food.


Oh god, why are you saying that.


Why, what did we just eat?

Was it spam? It was spam, wasn't it.

No, worse! IT'S CHICKEN, SOYLENT GREEN IS HORRIBLE HUMANOID CHICKEN.


It's people!!

Well, if you want to be PC about it, sure, furries are technically people.


This is the Soylent System! It is where the labs dispose of zombies they do not feel like dropping on innocent civilians. Elly, your father used to be in charge of this facility, but his guilt and his land-dweller fetish eventually drove him to resign.

Elly is too busy puking to answer coherently, but rest assured, she is upset. Fei is distraught enough to have some kind of mini-flashback to being strapped to a table as a child, but that is pretty pedestrian for him.


Snap out of it, Fei! Look at what you have consumed! Loooook.


Why are you being such a dick?!


This will teach you to read labels! I have been telling you to keep track of your sodium intake for years, but you never listened!

Fei and Elly leave this horrible, horrible room. Citan strikes a thoughtful pose and talks to himself.


To end a person's life, and then consume their flesh. Is that permissible...?

NO. IT'S NOT. This narration expects an A for this pop quiz. Citan catches up with Elly and Fei, and they proceed to the save point factory.


Well, now I just feel dizzy.

They move deeper into the facility, and eventually find themselves in a big room with a water tank full of giant robot.


It's an Omnigear, like the one Bart has!


Let's jack it!


No, this Omnigear is Final Boss grade. We had better leave it alone.

Then they go through rooms full of zombies in cages who still talk like people but try to eat you when you let them out. Well, fair's fair, but this party has got places to be. Like the Angel Whale Corpse Room!

And the Tiny Holographs of the Party Room!


This is starting to seem a little weird.

Finally they reach a door that cannot be unlocked by whalesong or whatever, and Fei declares it a dead-end. But luckily they have an ordinary country doctor on hand, and he enters the code for the door.


Okay!


Where are we, anyway?


This facility is where the Emperor and the Ministry's longevity experiments are carried out. The Emperor is 10,000 years old, and it is his fate to never die. But the Ministry have been dead for a while, and now only exists as bits of data in a memory bank. This is also where the human race was born.


I see.


They collect information from the save points and collect people from the surface in order to resurrect their human bodies. The zombies are the leftovers from the experiments, which get recycled as food and drugs for the population.


Fascinating!


So, uh, Citan... where did you get that medical degree, anyway?


Oh, ah, you know... around.


I guess they had Unlock Any Extremely Important Locked Door lectures at Around. And The Secret History of the World classes.


Aw, Elly, go easy on him! He's been like a one man deus ex machina for the entire game, have some respect!

Sorry, Fei, Elly has finally managed to make a saving throw on her A Very Small Child Could Figure This Out You Guys Come On check.


This facility isn't on any map, but Citan knew exactly which way to go. He can get through scanners, he's unlocked like six doors in here so far, he figured out the purpose of the M Plan when even Jesiah has no idea what it's about, and HE KNEW WE WERE EATING ZOMBIE CORPSE AND HE DIDN'T SAY ANYTHING.


Citan, who the hell are you?


 

The lights go out!


Well, that's a hell of a trick right there! Yay Doc!


...Doc?


Elly?


 


This is where everyone jumps out and yells "Happy Birthday" and the game ends on a cheerful note, right?


Because... it's not my birthday.


I just thought you should know.


...Aw man.

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