(part nineteen)

When last we saw our heroes, a terrible misunderstanding was underway!

This man has correctly identified Elly as Solarian, possibly because it never does occur to her to, say, change out of her uniform. He seems to have some sort of grudge!

Wait!! Jesiah, no!

...Is that you, Hyuga?


Wow, that's a nasty case of the stings you've picked up. Sorry, there, young lady, I guess you were trying to help Primera here.

Well, it isn't Thursday if no one's trying to shoot me.


She says thank you!


She also says the tights-for-pants look doesn't really work for you.

It would seem that Primera is mute and communicates by staring creepily at her relatives until they think something up to make the situation less awkward. Were that we were all so blessed.

Is this the girl that brought about your shotgun wedding?

My son is sixteen, my wife is dead, and you're an asshole.


This conversation is mercifully interrupted when somebody finally manages to flag down that Etone our heroes were looking for! Thank God, this could not have possibly gotten more awkward. Let's go charm us a Catholic.

So you see, we need your help!

That is indeed a terrible situation.

Ugh, quit wasting everyone's time and just help them.



Hm. No, it would seem that Jesiah is just an awkwardness vector.

The church says I can't talk to you anymore! You gamble and drink and seduce other men's wives and kill people indiscriminately!

Son, I haven't seduced another man's wife since grad school. These people saved your sister from being kidnapped into white slavery, so help them!

Oh, please forgive me, everyone. I'm Billy, an Ethos priest and Etone. I can introduce you at headquarters but I can't promise that they'll help you. We're jerks like that.

You perform rites and kill zombies?

Yes! I kick ass for the Lord!

This narration should probably stop calling Margie a pope now that we have gotten involved with the church that actually has a papacy. ...Nah. Billy feels like Margie's name and affiliation with the Nisan church sound familiar, but he can't quite place her. That is some stunning cultural ignorance for a priest, but our heroes are still trying to play this cool and let it slide.

Yes, you're both really into the God thing, we know. Can we just get this over with?

Well, I hate you already.


Ha ha! Shut up, Bart! Yes, please, let's go to Ethos headquarters.

Billy takes his sister away from their drunk father and says he will meet us at the Vatican later. Sigurd is nearly done overseeing repairs to the Yggdrasil's engines, so our heroes are going to go ahead and get on that.

This narration would like to take a moment to point out that Billy the priest has amazing boots.

If Fei ever wakes up he could stand to have a talk with this young man.


Elly, Bart, and Citan head to the Vatican, as the world map conveniently knows where that is. Billy has beaten them there, so he is presumably putting about in a little boat, or swimming, or... something. Anyway, he got us an interview with the church's Medical Technicians' Guild! The Vatican has a crazy space-age hospital in the basement, just as Dan Brown has been trying to warn us.

Hold on there, Billy! Your father has been causing trouble again!


...I'm pretty sure he is.


He's been shooting up our brothers at Ethos dig sites and injuring many of our workers. You have such a wonderful reputation as a priest and Etone! It would be terrible if something were to happen to it, such as having troublesome family members you have no direct control over.

Billy clearly does not want to talk about this, so he hurries us down to the basement. The doctors there take a look at Fei and confirm that all that icy sea water in his lungs lowered his metabolism and prevented from him suffering irreversible brain damage! That's... goodish. They don't know why he hasn't woken up yet, but they're pretty sure he just needs to sleep it off. They're going to run a few more tests, and then he's free to go back to being in a coma on the Yggdrasil.

That's cool, we can wait. Let's take a walk and annoy all these priests.

I'm going to stay here and moon at Fei, if that's cool with you guys.

Whatever, not your girlfriend. Comatose loser.

Oh, Bart is sad that his fellow shounen protagonist is a little dead. He and Citan run around and annoy all those priests for a while to get their minds off this. They are all very dignified and Catholic, as you would expect, though in a slightly creepy way, as this is a JRPG and the Japanese have uhhh ideas about Catholics. Mostly they are upset that there are so many zombies these days! We really do seem to be in an entirely different game all of a sudden. Again.

Okay, we're bored now. Are you done?

Yes, Fei's treatment is complete, though his plot-induced coma persists. Our heroes collect him to take him back to the ship. They want to thank Billy for all his help, but he seems to have high-tailed it while Bart and Citan were running around bugging people. That was probably wise of him. The doctors tell our heroes that Billy runs an orphanage on another far flung island, and he probably went home to make dinner or something.

How many jobs does this guy have?

Many! He puts exiled pirate princes and ordinary country doctors to shame! They whip out the world map again and find this orphanage, and it is basically the cutest, most saccharine Catholic orphanage ever. Child furries on swingsets! Dragon boys in the rafters! A sad little normal boy that recognizes the bell that Rico is still holding onto for some reason! It belongs to the boy's father, it seems.

Oh. Uh.

Wow. Awkward.

Moral ambiguity in Xenogears?! Never! Anyway, Billy is hanging out in the dining room slash home chapel.

Oh. Hello. ...Come on in, I guess.

We just wanted to thank you again for all that you've done for Fei.

Oh, don't mention it! You guys may be godless heathens, but none of us can leave people in need.

...So! This is your orphanage!

Yes! My sister and I were left without parents at an early age, and I opened an orphanage so none of these children would have to go through what we did.

...Your dad seems fine.

He doesn't count.

Sigurd busts in! The Yggdrasil's radar has picked up a huge ship in the vicinity!

Is it Gebler?

No idea, but they're moving fast. We have to get back to the bridge.

Then Jesiah comes in! Billy, you need to get some locks on these doors.




Hey, what? Easy with the charming diminutives, there, buddy, we are manly pirates.

Apparently Jesiah's family is from Solaris, and back when Sigurd lived there he was their au pair.

...Okay, no, that is stupid.

Your face is stupid.

...Oh my God, Siggy, what happened to your face?!


Our collective problem is that we are not drunk!

Jesiah drags Sigurd and Citan back to the Yggdrasil for drunkenness purposes. Of course the Yggdrasil has a bar! It is a classy establishment! Billy turns his nose up at all this, as does Bart, as he kind of wants to know what happened to this huge ship Sigurd was all upset about thirty seconds ago. They can't launch the ship without Sigurd on the bridge! It just isn't the same!

Bart and Elly go to see what the hell is going on here.

Well, after you betrayed us all and returned to your home country, Billy just cried for weeks. It was pretty upsetting.

Ramsus cried for weeks, too. That was also upsetting, though in a different way.

Yeah, at least Billy had an excuse, he was four.

Ramsus is basically crazy now!

Yes, I know. I'm a terrible human being for caring that my king was assassinated and his son was orphaned.


Hey, I'm the captain, I'm the one who's supposed to be getting drunk while on duty!

...Not that I don't have second thoughts now and again.