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|Old Book Vol. 1|
|Text||The Story of Creation
In the beginning, all that existed was Darkness.
For a long, long time, Darkness lived in solitude, growing ever so lonely.
Out of sorrow and despair, Darkness shed a tear.
From the tear were born two brothers:
Sword and Shield.
Sword claimed it could cut through all that exists.
Shield claimed itself imprenetrable.
Thus, the conflict was born -- a truly vicious conflict, lasting seven
days and seven nights.
In the end, Sword breached Shield, and Shield shattered Sword.
Pieces of Sword rained down to make the sky.
Pieces of Shield rained down to make the ground. Stars were created from the sparks of that battle.
The 27 gems adorning Sword and Shield transformed into the 27 True Runes. And thus began the world as we know it.
|Old Book Vol. 2|
|Source||Treasure: Ceras Lake Ruins|
|Text||The Sun Rune and the Night Rune
Long, long ago, the Sune Rune and the Night Rune were born into the world, their existence intertwined. They had a strong bond between them, as one controlled light, while the other reigned over darkness.
Before long, however, the Night Rune became annoyed by the dazzling brilliance of the Sun Rune. The Night Rune could stand it no longer! Turning itself into a sword, the Night Rune severed the bond between them, and went off on its own. From the fragments of the bond left behind, the Dawn Rune and the Twilight Rune were born. Ever since the Sun Rune lost its other half, legend has it that these two new Runes have remained by its side, acting as guardians.
|Old Book Vol. 3|
|Source||Treasure: Godwin Castle|
The assassination organization Nether Gate long supported the Queendom of Falena from the shadows. The organization was often criticized, however, for its inhumane methods. As such, Queen Arshtat and Ferid made the decision to abolish Nether Gate several years ago.
But Nether Gate refused to obey the order to disband. Of its five leaders, only Shinatsu, the head of the intelligence division, acquiesced. Hinoyagi, the head of the subversive activities division, put up heavy resistance to the order.
After a grim struggle, he was finally cornered by the Queen's Knights, committing suicide just before he could be captured.
Rumor has it that Kayanu, the head of the assassin training division, and Takefute, the head of the assassin division and overall supreme commander of Nether Gate, fled to Nagarea.
Tsuranami, head of the drug development division, vanished completely. There has not been the slightest hint as to his current whereabouts.
With its five leaders finally out of commission, Nether Gate was promptly dismantled. Free of this poison, the Queendom of Falena's armed forces are now manned solely by the regular army.
However, with three of its former leaders still at large, Nether Gate remains a threat to the sovereignty of the Queendom.
|Old Book Vol. 4|
|Source||Treasure: Underground Temple|
|Text||The Ancient Armes Dynasty
Long, long ago -- indeed, even hundreds of years before the arrival of the legendary Sindar race, a mighty dynastic nation held power in this land. That nation was the Ancient Armes Dynasty.
Blessed by the Sun Rune, the dynasty was prosperous beyond compare. Its vast territory stretched across what is now known as the Queendom of Falena, the New Armes Kingdom and Nagarea. One fateful day, however, the King suddenly and inexplicably went insane.
His madness caused the Sun Rune to go berserk, destroying everything in its path. The magnificent Armes Dynasty, the pinnacle of civilization, was gone in an instant. In its place lay only dry and barren wilderness.
Some theorize that the capital of this dynasty was near Amdort Mountain, in the center of the present-day Queendom of Falena. However, no trace of the civilization remains. However, it's safe to say that if the Sun Rune indeed burned all vestiges of the capital to the ground, then there should be no remains to discover. Although the people of the modern-day New Armes Kingdom claim to be descendants of the Ancient Armes Dynasty, there is no proof that they have any racial or cultural relationship to the dynasty whatsoever.
The New Armes Kingdom's claims are likely just nationalistic propaganda, aimed at building itself up into a nation as great as the Ancient Armes Dynasty once was. Since most people now identify the name "Armes" with the New Armes Kingdom, the true Ancient Armes Dynasty is usually just referred to as "the Ancient Dynasty" or "the Ancient Nation."
|Old Book Vol. 5|
|Text||Royal Family Succession Conflict
This tragedy started under the reign of Queen Olhazeta, in the late 210s of the New Capital Calendar. Princess Falzrahm, second in line to the throne, began maneuvering to win over the majority of the Senate, wanting her sister, Princess Shahrewar, to give up her right of succession and take it for herself.
Rumor has it that the Barows family was the real force behind all this scheming, as they had married one of their members to Princess Falzrahm.
Because both Queen Olhazeta's and Princess Shahrewar's husbands were from the Godwin family, the Barows family became terrified of the possibility of losing their influence in the Senate and royal family.
Thus, they would use Princess Falzrahm in an attempt to seize the right of succession. It is unclear as to whether all -- or even some -- of these rumors surrounding the Barows Family are true.
Regardless of the Barows family's ambitions, however, it does appear that Princess Falzrahm herself really did have designs on the throne.
The situation quickly grew antagonistic between the Godwin and Barows families, each of whom supported one of the two princesses, and even the aristocracy that supported the two families got mixed up in the hostilities. Queen Olhazeta, once known for her brilliance and decisiveness, was getting old, and she no longer had the strength to resolve the situation.
Armed force was never officially used, but a cold war raged between the two factions, one that used every conceivable form of subterfuge. And what could be considered the culmination of this secret strife was the Sacred Games of Princess Arshtat. Even though Princess Shahrewar's daughter, Haswar, was older than Arshtat and therefore had a higher priority of succession...
Princess Falzrahm and Lord Barows tenaciously persuaded Queen Olhazeta into letting them hold the Sacred Games for their own oldest child, Arshtat, before Haswar's Sacred Games. This was, of course, a strategy of Princess Falzrahm's to lend credibility to the idea that she herself was the predominant successor.
But, amazingly, the one who won Princess Arshtat's hand in marriage at these Sacred Games was a barbaric swordsman from a foreign land.
If either the Barows or the Godwin family had won, the possibility of a rise to arms had been expected. This outcome, then, ironically, led to a cooling down of the antagonism between the two factions.
But that peace only lasted until 226, when Queen Olhazeta passed away. With the prospect of the actual throne so close at hand, antagonism was rekindled even before the mourning period for the Queen was over.
And that antagonism turned instantaneously into a bloody struggle. And throughout this struggle, Nether Gate's nefarious influence was the cause of most of the bloodshed. Nether Gate is usually under the direct control of the Queen, but the throne was vacant during this time.
And so Nether Gate played both sides, executing assassinations for both Princess Shahrewar's and Princess Falzrahm's factions. Nether Gate's ultimate goal was to cling to power no matter which side acceded to the throne. In the end, though, their actions brought unprecedented bloodshed to the Sun Palace.
This war of succession saw countless victims, as many from both the Godwin and Barows factions were slain. In the end, even the husbands of the two Princesses themselves were assassinated.
Not wanting to see any more bloodshed, Princess Shahrewar -- not having a very strong personality by nature -- lost the will to fight and gave up the throne to her younger sister.
But Princess Falzrahm had become suspicious of anything and everything. She thought that even this noble gesture of Princess Shahrewar's might be a trick. Thus, she ordered Nether Gate to assassinate her older sister.
After acceding to the throne at last, Queen Falzrahm died of illness only two short years later. After all the bloodshed that had occured, this ending was hardly dramatic. These years of internal conflict and intrigue have left a brutal scar on the Queendom of Falena. This scar will not easily -- nor quickly -- heal.
But the Princesses Arshtat, Sialeeds and Haswar are determined to never repeat their mother's mistakes. Many feel that this will certainly be the Queendom's salvation.
|Old Book Vol. 6|
|Source||Treasure: Deep Twilight Forest|
|Text||The Legendary Sindar Race
Long ago, a mysterious people we know today as the Sindar dwelled in the land of Falena. Their civilization was far more technologically advanced than ours is today. Scholars say, however, that the Sindar left this land for reasons unknown, never to return.
The Sindar Race left behind many things to convince us of their existence. For example, the ruins in the Deep Twilight Forest were built with technology that far surpasses anything we have now. No expert doubts that this was a dwelling of the Sindar Race.
Some theorize, however, that the ultimate legacy of the Sindar race lies not only in ruins such as those in the Deep Twilight Forest. Indeed, perhaps the legacy of the Sindar race is this very land itself, Falena.
These theorists contend that after the land was reduced to ashes with the extinction of the Ancient Armes Dynasty, the Sindar race mysteriously appeared, managing to return the rich, green lushness to this beloved land. Nobody knows why the Sindar disappeared. But some scholars insist that this race has not yet gone extinct... These scholars say that the first Queen of legend, who descended to Lunas with the Sun Rune in hand, was actually from the Sindar race.
This theory may seem like mere speculation. However, one can indeed find many similarities between the seal statue of the Sun Rune and ancient Sindar relics. More proof of this intriguing theory is now being sought out by our best and brightest scholars.
|Old Book Vol. 7|
|Text||The Art of One-on-One Duels
If your opponent "Guards", the only way to wound him is with an "Attack." You won't produce dramatic results with just one "Attack," but a steady barrage should eventually lead you to victory.
When your opponent "Attacks," he leaves himself open. This is the perfect opportunity to hit him with your "Special" move. Conversely, if your opponent goes for a "Special" move, it's vital that you stay calm and take up a defensive "Guard" stance. You can fend off your opponent's move and even make a searing counterattack!
Even more important is the ability to instantly perceive what your opponent is going to do and react quickly. You can't win without being decisive.
Sometimes, both you and your opponent will "Attack" at the same time and wind up in a "deadlock." The only thing that'll give you the upper hand in situations like these is strength. Be aggressive!
And, finally, one more thing...
If your opponent is about to go down, he might hit you with a last-ditch counterattack. You have to be ready to decide what to do in an instant. And heaven help you if you make a mistake...
That's all! May victory be yours!
|Old Book Vol. 8|
|Text||War: All About Military Units
Infantry advances on foot, defending against arrows with shields and heavy armor. However, this unit lacks mobility and is vulnerable to cavalry. With their great mobility, cavalry can overrun infantry, but their thin armor leaves them vulnerable to archer attack.
Archers are formidable against the lightly-armored cavalry. However, their attacks are ineffective against infantry units, which are excellent at defending arrow attacks.
Combat ships transport a large number of infantry ready to transfer to enemy ships for hand-to-hand combat. However, because the soldies on deck are defenseless, combat ships are vulnerable to archer attack.
Ships specialized in ramming attacks on other ships are called "rams." With their thick armor, archer attacks do little damage, but their small crews make rams vulnerable to combat ships coming up alongside them.
Archer ships post a large number of archers on deck and specialize in long-range attacks. They have the advantage over combat ships but are rather defenseless against rams.
Some archer units or archer ships have the word "Rune" attached to their unit names. These units can perform powerful magic attacks, so they should be utilized whenever possible. However, keep in mind that they have a limited amount of magic attacks.
The strengths and weaknesses of a military unit depend greatly on the ability of its commander. Knowing how to form a great unit requires a lot of trial and error.
|Old Book Vol. 9|
|Text||War: A Complete Tactical Guide
A commander of an army must have the vision for much more than simply winning battles. Ideally, he must not only keep damage to his troops to a minimum, but also bring about a speedy victory.
1. Advance Quickly
The quicker the conclusion to warfare, the better. Loss of life can be held to a minimum, and many benefits may be reaped as well.
2. Lure the Enemy Away
If complete destruction of the main enemy force is your goal, eliminate the enemies surrounding that main force. Identify as many of the enemy units that surround the main force as you can, lure them away one by one, and destroy them.
3. Don't Pursue the Enemy Too Far
If you make too deep an incursion into enemy territory, enemy units might surround you and you'll be unable to retreat. Any unit, no matter how strong, is likely to get wiped out in the face of overwhelming firepower.
4. Destroy Enemy Units Completely
An enemy unit might sometimes possess valuable equipment or precious items. In order to obtain these, you must destroy that unit completely. These war trophies can help you in future battles, too.
|Old Book Vol. 10|
In the process of researching Rune magic, I discovered a powerful, advanced class of magic achieved through the simultaneous use of multiple Runes.
Here is an outline of what I discovered.
First of all, this phenomenon only occurs when the advanced forms of the five basic elemental Runes are used. These advanced-form Runes are the Rage, Thunder, Flowing, Cyclone and Mother Earth Runes.
Two magic users must each possess one of these five Runes, and they have to cast the same-level magic at the same time. Their magic interacts and produces a powerful effect. However, not just any two of these Runes will work. The combinations are actually quite limited.
Rage + Thunder: Flame Array
Thunder + Flowing: Thunder God
Flowing + Cyclone: Water Dragon
Cyclone + Mother Earth: Fierce Wind Fang
Mother Earth + Rage: Scorched Earth
Alas, I couldn't find any other combinations besides these five that produced Unite Magic... It should be obvious, but I would still like to add that the higher the level of magic the two magic users cast, the more powerful the Unite Magic will be. And this is just speculation, but I wonder if this same phenomenon is produced by combining the Dawn Rune and Twilight Rune...
If I somehow ever managed to get a hold of those two Runes, I'd love to test that theory!
|Old Book Vol. 11|
|Text||Trading Trade Secrets
1. Buy Low, Sell High!
This is the most basic of principles when it comes to trade. Do the opposite, and you'll lose out! Anyone who doesn't understand this basic principle has no business being in commerce!
2. Do Your Legwork!
The prices of tradable items are completely different from town to town. Get those legs working! Find out for yourself which towns sell cheap and which buy high!
3. Believe Those Rumors!
You can trust that gossip you hear at trading posts. When the prices of tradable items change dramatically, that's your chance to make a big profit! Keep your ears open!
4. Build Up Your Achievements!
The better your performance in trade, the more profitable items you'll be allowed to sell! Even if the profit margin isn't very high at first, if you steadily plug away at selling daily essentials, your achievements will surely be recognized!
Now that you've taken your first steps toward becoming a great merchant, let me leave you with these words:
Every merchant should know not to rejoice too much over a profit or lament too much over a loss!
|Old Book Vol. 12|
|Source||Treasure: Sauronix Castle|
|Text||The Feitas Dragon Cavalry
Dragon horses are native to the southwest of Falena. Although they look fearsome, they are actually gentle and intelligent creatures. Due to these creatures' friendly, docile nature, those who lived nearby began to live in cooperation and harmony with the dragon horses, eventually forming a communal society together.
This communal society was the origin of the Dragon Cavalry. At first, these Dragon-Horse People were considered "barbaric nomads" too savage to submit to the Queen's control, and were persecuted just like Raftfleet. The Queendom made it a priority to subjugate the Dragon-Horse People.
With the great mobility of dragon horses as their weapon, however, the Dragon-Horse People would not easily nor quietly yield. They fiercely defended their lands against the Queendom's incursions for years. At one time, the area around present-day Port Spinacks and southward was virtually their own independent territory, as the Queendom was unable to gain a foothold in the region.
But this antagonistic relationship underwent a sudden and dramatic shift, all due to the founding of Nagarea. Nagarea was a violent theocracy, formed by integrating a group of small nations in the south. Wanting to further expand its power, Nagarea sent an "armed missionary group" into Falena.
In reality, though, these "missionaries" were no more than an invading army. Suddenly faced with a common enemy, the Dragon-Horse People and the Queendom's Army fought alongside one another, with the partnership becoming closer as the conflict raged on.
Dragon horses only lay their eggs in a single cave on the banks of the Feitas River. In cases where they've been forced to lay elsewhere, the eggs have gone dormant, mysteriously unable to hatch.
Thus, if forced to flee elsewhere, the dragon horse population would be unable to sustain itself. According to the dogma of the Nagarist Order, dragon horses are evil and wicked creatures that must be "cleansed" from this world. If Nagarea were somehow able to invade the lands of the Dragon-Horse People, it would surely have meant the slaughter of the entire dragon horse population. And so the Dragon-Horse People fought all the more desperately. The Commander of the Queen's Knights believed that the Dragon-Horse People were equal citizens of Falena.
He fiercely led the main force of the Queendom's Army in furious fighting. And they defended the dragon horse lair to the very end.
It can be said that the most important consequence of this war was not the defeat of the Nagarist invasion, but the strong sense of solidarity that formed between the Queendom's Army and the Dragon-Horse People.
After the war, the Queen officially recognized the service of the Dragon-Horse People, and made the entire southwest area their territory. The Dragon-Horse People, too, felt deeply indebted to the Queendom's Army for saving them, and swore their loyalty to the Queendom of Falena.
They were organized into a military force that would come to the aid of the Queendom whenever it was in trouble, with dragon horses and swords at the ready. Thus, the Feitas Dragon Cavalry was born. However, early on, the power, justice, and might of the Dragon Cavalry would be greatly abused.
The Senators, constantly involved in vicious power struggles, were selfishly bent on winning the Dragon Cavalry over to their own factions. This kind of intrigue and subterfuge was alien to the simple Dragon-Horse People.
Unable to deal with the devious plots and stratagems typical of courtiers, they were often manipulated and used as little more than the Senators' pawns and private soldiers.
The Dragon Cavalry, tired of being used as pawns in a political game, decided to impose a strict rule upon themselves. They decided that their own priority should be to defend Falena's borders. They vowed to never let themselves get involved in Falena's internal disputes.
The Sun Palace, which had also been uncomfortable with the Senators' behaviour, officially gave its approval to this rule, too.
Since divorcing themselves from internal politics, the Dragon Cavalry has served as a high-profile border patrol against barbarian invaders, earning them the grateful respect and trust of the Falenan citizenry. During the Great Earthquake of 164 of the New Capital Calendar, the land route that connected Falena and Nagarea was destroyed beyond repair. Thus, the once-terrifying Nagarist threat has become far less serious.
However, today, with the ominous rise of Armes to the east, the Dragon Cavalry's importance to the Queendom of Falena remains as high as it ever has.
|Old Book Vol. 13|
|Text||Regulations of the Dragon Cavalry
The Feitas Dragon Cavalry is governed by a strict set of regulations. These rules, and the regimented, disciplined behaviour they inspire in the cavalry, are a source of great pride for Falena.
But the vehemence with which they uphold these rules can make them appear to be a little pigheaded at times. The best example of this is their prohibition against women joining the Dragon Cavalry.
While it's true that women didn't ride dragon horses among the ancestors of the Dragon Cavalry in the dragon horse village, that was only a custom. It was never defined as a hard-and-fast rule. In fact, the Dragon Cavalry was simply following the conventions of the Queendom at the time.
Back then, membership in the Queen's Knights was restricted to men only, so the Dragon Cavalry simply followed that tradition.
Later on, women were finally allowed to be appointed to the Queen's Knights. But the Dragon Cavalry, insistent on upholding their own rules and traditions, didn't follow their lead. Thus, women are excluded to this day.
However, rules shouldn't simply exist because of "tradition." The reason for the existence of rules should always be considered and challenged. If the times change, perhaps rules and regulations should, too.