Trials of the Valiant Chapter 22

By The RPGenius

As she and Ramza marched along, Agrias suddenly realized where she had seen their captors.

"Ramza...don't these little pests look like Mohgri, the Summoning Monster?" she remarked.

Ramza snapped his fingers. "That's right! I've read a few legends about a small creature that once existed in Ivalice: the Moogle. Supposedly, they were all brought to extinction during one of the ancient wars, when their coats were prized for their warmth during long marches through the colder parts of Ivalice. Mohgri's the only Moogle anyone's seen for centuries."

Having finally figured out what these things were, Ramza began to berate Worker 8.

"Say, Worker 8, do you recall me saying something about alerting me if someone came close to us?"

"I do, Master."

"Well, then, perhaps you could enlighten me as to the reasoning behind your failure to tell me about these moogles until they surrounded us?!" Ramza asked in a calm-but-extremely-ticked-off voice.

"You specified to wake you if a person came within sensor range. Moogles do not fall under the category of people."

Agrias rolled her eyes. When would Ramza learn that Worker 8 was unreliable to be trusted to do anything more than fight?

Ramza shot a murderous look at Worker 8. Agrias attempted to calm him down.

"Ramza, we've been in situations that were a lot worse than this. You should know by now how trustworthy Worker 8 is outside of combat. Now, calm down. I'm sure we can get through this together," she told him.

Ramza did calm down a bit. "So, where do you think they're taking us? And why?" he asked.

Agrias shrugged. "I suppose we'll find out before long," she answered.

"Yeah. I hope they aren't working for Syl--OW!" he yelled as a moogle gave him a nasty jab with his spear.

"I think they're tired of listening to us, Ramza. We'd better be qui--OW!" Another moogle had stabbed her.

Agrias and Ramza walked on in silence, both wondering where they were being led.

* * *

"Asura Back!" Malak yelled.

The fiery blast caused the Archer to fall back for a second. The Archer was back up in a flash, though, and shot an arrow that went through his side. Malak gritted his teeth in pain, but managed to dodge the next arrow. The Archer pointed the crossbow again, but never got the chance to fire. Vantan had come and stabbed him.

Vantan ran over to Malak. "Are you okay?"

"Yeah, I'm fine. Just give me a second," Malak said as he pulled out the arrow.

Vantan smiled. "I'll give you better than that. Here!" The Holy Knight gave Malak a Hi Potion. "I got it off a Chemist."

Malak poured it onto his wound, healing most of it. "Thanks. Come on, let's get back into the battle."

* * *

Three Knights surrounded Byblos. He hacked and slashed with the berserk frenzy of a cornered scorpion. His claws swiped the air in a frenzy, moving with lightning speed. His insane slicing rage was pointless, though, for the Knights easily blocked each of his attacks with their shields, waiting until he had exhausted himself.

Byblos began to tire, and the Knights moved in, viciously slashing and stabbing him with their blades. In no time, Byblos was bleeding from a dozen gashes, barely able to continue standing, let alone fight back.

One Knight raised his arm to deliver the final blow. Suddenly, a large, knife-like blade burst out of the ground, slicing through the Knight's arm and cutting his sword in half. The Knight yelled in pain.

Meliadoul came running over and quickly plunged her sword into the Knight's abdomen. He fell dead to the ground. The two others turned to face their new foe, and Meliadoul tried to parry off their thrusts, unable to concentrate on striking a blow of her own.

Byblos summoned his remaining strength, got to his feet, and cast Parasite. A wave of magic enclosed around the Knight, and when it left, he stood, a silent stone statue.

The absence of a second enemy's attacks gave Meliadoul the interval between parries needed. "Icewolf Bite!"

A large magical spike burst from the ground, stabbing through the small mantle the Knight wore, and scraping harshly along his backside. He yelped in pain and clutched at his back. This moment of distraction cost him his life as Meliadoul brought her Save the Queen blade down in a sweeping arc upon him.

Meliadoul turned to the weakened Byblos. "Byblos, use your Shock power on anyone close to you. You're so badly hurt, it'll be very powerful." With that, she ran off to confront another enemy.

Byblos watched her go. That woman was a warrior colder than a winter's chill blast. Even Agrias could not match her level of indifference. Rather than heal her companion, she would leave him to his own devices because his abilities became all the more powerful with each new wound he received. The death of her brother and father had deadened her to empathy for her fellow warriors.

Byblos shook himself from these thoughts. Pondering his companion's personalities and flaws was not his concern. His concern was repaying his debt to Ramza, and that meant eliminating these foes.

Byblos looked for a victim and saw a Wizard nearby. He concentrated on the Wizard while thinking about all the pain that had been inflicted upon him, all the blows he'd taken, all the blood he'd spilled, until his thoughts manifested themselves in a glowing sphere of hate hovering over him. He threw it at the Wizard. The moment it hit her, the Wizard gasped and fell, dead.

Byblos next began to concentrate on a Lancer...

* * *

Mustadio reloaded his gun, took careful aim, and fired. Malak would never know how close a Geomancer came to killing him. Nor would Malak ever know that he had been saved by Mustadio.

Mustadio sighed and reloaded his gun. Such was the way a sniper worked. Not many of his allies realized his value to the team because he did his job so well. He didn't really mind, but still, it would have been nice if they at least knew.

* * *

Vantan used Lightning Stab, slaying the final opponent. Everyone stood, breathing heavily, most bleeding from various wounds. Malak collected all the potions the dead Chemists had on them, and distributed them among everyone.

Meliadoul walked over to the cave entrance. "Well, now what? Moving all this rubble and these rocks out of the way isn't going to be easy, probably not even possible," she said.

Vantan had a suggestion. "Why don't we wait until Miss Alma comes back? Perhaps she'll have an idea."

Everyone agreed to this. They all thought she'd have a good idea of what to do next, and anyway, they were too tired from the battle to do anything this moment.

* * *

Ramza gasped. He and Agrias had not been expecting anything like what they saw before them.

The moogle village sat in a huge underground cavern, immense enough to fit half of the largest city of Ivalice inside. The surprising part, though, were the houses.

The various moogles walking about their village lived inside enormous, hollowed-out mushrooms. Whether they had grown naturally to suit this need or whether the moogles had somehow engineered their size to become their homes.

Ramza and Agrias had little time to take in the scenery, though, and were prodded along through the village to a special mushroom/home. This particular one was painted red, rather than left the natural white color of the other mushrooms.

Ramza ordered Worker 8 to stay outside, for he could never hope to fit inside the large mushroom. Then, ducking their heads to enter through the short doorway, Ramza and Agrias entered.

Chapter 23

Final Fantasy Tactics Fanfic