The Quarry - The Loop
Do you like this video?
|“||Iron Rose Stylist Legion received the queen's order to go to Lanslo and meet Ace. At the Lanslo train station, they recalled the past time when Debbie joined Iron Rose three years ago.||”|
- (New Calendar, Year 680: Lanslo Railway Station)
- Ransa: Never thought I'd see the day the Lanslo Railway Station became so lively.
- Sherry: We were in the middle of a war three years ago, of course it's different now.
- Mela: Oi, Debbie! We don't come here often, so why don't you keep your head down and your mouth shut? Or have you forgotten what happened here?
- Debbie: Wha?! What are you talking about? 3 years ago? I don't remember anything at all!
- Ransa: You don't remember who snuck out lugging around a big suitcase, trying to catch the train...?
- Mela: Or who acted all brave and selfless and left us here all alone, covered in our own tears and blubbering like babies?
- Debbie: What are you even talking about? I haven't the slightest clue...hey, why hasn't Ace shown up yet?
- Mela: It's still early. What's the hurry?
- Debbie: I'm just worried about Ace. After all, we're heading to Cloud City to help fend off Nidhogg's forces; we can't afford to slack off, not when we have such an important mission!
- Ransa: And don't even think about changing the subject!
- Debbie: I wasn't! I have no idea what you're talking about—
- Mela: Is that so? You might have forgotten, but we remember it all too clearly. Why don't we review Debbie's illustrious history as a stylist?
- (New Calendar, Year 667(sic): Lanslo)
- (The Iron Queen's sovereignty, acknowledged by nearly all in the Pigeon Kingdom, is met with unprecedented, violent resistance in Lanslo, city of machinery)
- (Freddie, the Duchess of Lanslo, fights alongside her stylist subjects, rejecting the Queen's governance and resisting her imperial guards)
- (Debbie, a dwarven stylist, makes a name for herself in this war, leading stylists of South Lor to successive victories, and eventually push the Queen's forces out of their city)
- Debbie: (Proudly) Hahaha, another loss, huh? You guys are pretty sorry excuses for imperial soldiers. Lanslo will never fall to such pathetic forces!
- Guard Captain: You are formidable, indeed...but we will never surrender!
- Debbie: (Grimaces) Don't you think your denial is a Iittle...embarrassing?
- (Enraged, the captain of the guards rushes forward to attack. Suddenly, he is stopped in his tracks)
- Ransa: Don't act so rashly.
- Guard Captain: Who the hell? Wait, that rose...that's the emblem of our queen! You must be the special advisor sent by Her Majesty.
- (The captain gathers himself hurriedly and salutes Ransa, who nods in acknowledgment)
- Guard Captain: The Queen's orders are absolute. If she says we must retreat, we shall retreat. But Lanslo—
- Ransa: Rest assured, the Queen will never give up.
- (The goddess of victory seems to favor the people of Lanslo. A grand celebration was held in the city square; outside, Sherry, Mela, and Ransa meet with the Queen's orders)
- Sherry: Lanslo is home to many talented Stylists, and the Duchess Freddie owns many great and precious designs. They are significant to the Pigeon Kingdom, and must be brought in line.
- Mela: As for the one known as Debbie...I hear tell she is a dwarf? I'm interested to see what kinds of designs a dwarf is capable of making.
- Sherry: For this reason, your mission is to infiltrate and explore the city.
- Mela: ...Hey, you two! Think you can just sit around like this? Don't go making decisions on your own!
- Ransa: You're the best candidate for this mission. Besides...that little girl beat the captain of the guards. She's the heroine of Lanslo, so try not to bring shame to Iron Rose.
- (That evening. in the Ducal Palace)
- (The Duchess Freddie is holding a banquet, and all stylists are invited. A dwarf herself, she stands atop a set of stairs next to her podium to raise a toast to her guests)
- Duchess Freddie: Every one of you played a vital role in our triumph. On our dignity as stylists of Lanslo, we shall never be enslaved!
- Duchess Freddie: In addition, I would like to make a toast to the stylist whose leadership ensured our victory today. To Debbie, an elite commander and the pride of all dwarves!
- (All eyes turn to Debbie, who, holding her glass and looking a bit tipsy, has no time to react before the Duchess drains her cup in one gulp and the crowd cheers and applauds)
- (Throughout the banquet, people constantly flock to Debbie to raise toasts in her honor. As they shower her with praise, some even implore her to join their Stylist Associations)
- (Debbie reveled in the festivities, the celebratory atmosphere in Lanslo reminding her of the Half-Moon Banquet)
- (As a dwarf, she was often treated like a child or even overlooked entirely, tonight, she is the object of everyone's admiration, including the Duchess)
- (As happy as she is to cheer alongside the others, she realizes that these guests were neither her people nor her friends. Their smiles and well-wishing may not be incere)
- (Without realizing it, Debbie drinks entirely too much. Feeling uneasy, she makes an excuse to leave Ducal Palace, but crashes into something on her way out)
- Debbie: Ouch!
- Debbie: Wh...what is this...
- Oh, hit someone...
- Debbie: Hey...what's the big idea? *hic*
- Troubled Girl: You ran into me, little one; not the other way around.
- (Debbie wriggles out of her arms, and retorts)
- Debbie: Brat? I'm no brat! I'm fourteen years old!
- Troubled Girl: Fourteen? Hahaha, that just makes you a fourteen-year old brat!
- Debbie: I'm not a brat! I'm the elite stylist who defended all of Lanslo!
- (Debbie, visibly drunk, nearly falls over as she speaks. Suppressing a fit of laughter, the girl picks her up yet again)
- Troubled Girl: Alright then, elite stylist of Lanslo, it's time to sober up. Even when you're so drunk, you refuse to back down. You're something else, you know?
- (The girl brings Debbie to a familiar tavern, and orders her a cup of dandelion tea to sober up)
- (Debbie drains the cup as though it were another glass of wine, then promptly passes out at the table. Two hours later, she stirs from her sleep)
- Debbie: (Rubs her eyes) Where am I...? Is this not the Duchess' banquet?
- Troubled Girl: Finally awake, I see. If I hadn't brought you here, you'd be passed out drunk in the street.
- (Debbie was taken aback for a moment: she was unable to remember what had happened just hours ago. She carefully asks the troubled-looking girl a question)
- Debbie: Ermm...I apologize. I hope I didn't put you too far out of your way?
- Troubled Girl: (Laughs) You were a huge pain. Right before we got here, you were so drunk you tried to dance with a tree! It took every bit of my strength to wrestle you over here...
- (Debbie, embarrassed, believes every word she says)
- Debbie: I... I'm so sorry! Thank you so much for your help and patience!
- Debbie: My name is Debbie. May I ask your name?
- Troubled Girl: ...I'm Mela.
- Debbie: Mela, your way of dressing is quite impressive. Are you a stylist?
- Mela: Sort of. But I'm sure I don't even compare to an elite stylist such as yourself.
- (Debbie blushes, aware that she must have been bragging about herself while intoxicated)
- Mela: What about you? You're a dwarf, right? What brought you to Lanslo?
- Debbie: I want to become a great stylist. I want to prove that dwarfs are not only capable of crafting jewelry; we can also design beautiful clothing. I'm afraid I still have a lot to learn before achieving my dream.
- Debbie: For example, I'm not very skilled at matching mature or sexy outfits...
- Mela: What a coincidence. That happens to be my specialty.
- Debbie: Really? Why don't we join forces, then? I'm sure our teamwork would be amazing!
- (Mela looks at Debbie, her eyes filled with an ambition that wouldn't take no for an answer. Just like Debbie, she also left her home to follow her dream)
Sneak into Duke Palace
- Mela: ...Rubbish. There's nothing great about the Duchess, not a thing.
- Debbie: How can you say that when you've never even met her?! If you knew her, you'd agree with me!
- Mela: I know more about her than you, believe me. She pretends to be a strong, righteous leader, all the while keeping her subjects happy and oblivious, like little kids.
- Debbie: I'm not a kid...and that's not the point. Look at how she rallied every stylist in Lanslo to fend off the Iron Queen's tyranny! She really is a reliable leader!
- Mela: She resists the Queen solely for her own benefit. But her matching is not as good as previously reported.
- Debbie: That's enough. I don't know where your prejudice comes from, but I'm sure if I bring you to her, you'll change your mind!
- (Mela gives up, and follows Debbie to Ducal Palace)
- (The gates to the palace are closed, a number of guards stand near the entrance stopping visitors from coming in. Suddenly, a person's figure dashes behind a tree in the garden)
- Mela: (Now's a good chance to sneak in...)
- Debbie: Umm...is the Duchess not in right now?
- Mela: Why don't we go in and have a look?
- Debbie: I don't think we should...
- Mela: What's the matter? I have never been to Ducal Palace, and I would really like to see it.
- Debbie: Well...alright, then. I'm pretty familiar with it, so just keep up with me.
- (After drawing the guards' attention away, they sneak past them and into Ducal Palace through an unassuming gate in the rear garden)
Plot in Garden
- (Although security outside seems to have been increased, there are much fewer guards and servants within Ducal Palace
- Mela: (Freddie must have done this to keep attention away from herself while she does something in secret. This makes my job much easier...)
- (Mela walks towards the place where she saw a figure earlier)
- Debbie: Mela, where are you going?
- (Somewhere in the garden, the Duchess Freddie is meeting with a man, with several guards standing around. Mela hides in a bush, and manages to overhear their conversation)
- Duchess Freddie: ...It must not have been an easy journey, to come to us from the Lilith Kingdom. What could be so important that the Prime Minister would send you to us?
- (The emissary, taking all precautions, drops his voice very low, and Mela is unable to hear him clearly)
- Duchess Freddie: I'll begin searching for what the Prime Minister wants immediately. However, please remind him not to forget about our agreement.
- (Their conversation ends, and Freddie stands up to see the emissary off)
- Mela: You heard it yourself: the Duchess has been conspiring with the Prime Minister of Lilith. Her resistance to the Queen was never for the sake of the Pigeon Kingdom.
- No way.
- Debbie: That's impossible...the Duchess can't be a traitor.
- Mela: Nothing is impossible. She's selfish, and is merely using Lanslo as a bargaining chip.
Seeing is Believing
- (Just then, the Duchess realizes there are intruders in the chamber, and rushes over with a retinue of guards)
- Duchess Freddie: Well, if it isn't Mela of the Iron Rose Stylist Group...has the Iron Rose fallen so low that they've become petty thieves?
- Debbie: ...Iron Rose Stylist Group? What do you mean, Duchess Freddie...?
- Duchess Freddie: Oh, poor Debbie...didn't you know? She's a dog of the Queen, who snuck into Lanslo and has been leading you on this entire time...
- (Debbie looks at Mela in disbelief. So many things have happened to day, that she is unable to process them all at once)
- Mela: I'm sorry, Debbie...but as she says, I am a member of the Iron Rose Stylist Group. Even so, from what we saw today, I'm sure you have your own beliefs...
- Duchess Freddie: Seize her!
- Mela: There's no need to worry.
- (Mela bids farewell to Debbie, and leads the guards away from the chamber. The only ones left are Debbie and the Duchess Freddie)
- Duchess Freddie: Debbie, my poor child. It must have been so hard, finding out you were being deceived by your close friend. I won't blame you for what has happened today.
- Duchess Freddie: Please understand, whatever Mela said to you was all lies, lies intended to turn you against Lanslo. You're our best stylist; if they get you, Lanslo is all but lost...
- Debbie: (Takes a step back from the Duchess) But then...Duchess Freddie, how do you explain this chamber?
- Duchess Freddie: What did Mela tell you? These drawings and materials are simply being kept here to prevent their theft. Mela must have come here looking to take them back!
- Debbie: Then what about your meeting in the garden just now? You met with an emissary from Lilith in private...and mentioned an 'agreement' with their Prime Minister! I heard it all!
- Duchess Freddie: Oh, my child...do you truly believe the words of a spy over my own?
- Debbie: I only believe in what I saw with my own eyes, Duchess.
- (The Duchess does not refute what Debbie saw but, considering Debbie's power, continues trying to persuade her)
- Duchess Freddie: Debbie...bow could you suspect me? Do you remember who it was that discovered your gift and brought you out of Pigeon Forest?
- Duchess Freddie: If it weren't for my intervention, you would still be in Pigeon Forest, making a living as a mediocre jewelcrafter like your parents.
- Duchess Freddie: How could you have possibly become the elite stylist you are now, the heroine of South Lor, without my help?
- Duchess Freddie: I founded the Southern Cross Star Scholarship just for dwarves, but it was never intended to produce such an ungrateful dwarf!
- (Debbie looked at the Duchess in shock, her offensive demeanor nothing like the noble and elegant lady she once knew)
- (She's become so terrible and hypocritical, and even belittled her own people. Perhaps...this was the real Duchess)
- Debbie: (Perhaps...Mela was right, and I never knew her true face)
- Debbie: Thank you so much for everything you've done, Duchess Freddie. But...this ends here.
- (Debbie, taking a deep breath to keep from being overwhelmed by sadness and anger, turns and walks resolutely towards the door)
- (Her admiration and respect for the dwarven Duchess now all but replaced by the deepest disgust)
- Duchess Freddie: (Guards, seize her as well! She knows too much, and cannot be allowed to leave this place!)
- (A few guards run in and approach Debbie. She stops and looks up at them)
- Debbie: Out of my way.
- Guard: You think you can still be an 'elite stylist' without the Duchess' support? An |r elegant and mature gown| should be more than enough to defeat a dwarf like you!
Depart and Reunion
- (Debbie makes quick work of the guards, and leaves Ducal Palace unscathed)
- (She doesn't know where to go. Not long after, the Duchess Freddie brands Debbie a traitor of Lanslo, and a dog of the Iron Queen)
- (Her former comrades no longer believe in her, but Debbie does not try to convince them. She knows that no one in Lanslo would accept her story, anyway)
- (Debbie considers returning to Pigeon Forest. Although she is fond of matching and designing, this is all she is good for. Perhaps she will never be a great stylist)
- (But before that, she has one more thing to do: save Mela. Though she deceived her, they are still friends. She sneaks up to the palace and discovers that Mela has escaped)
- Debbie: (Then... it's time to leave.)
- (That night, Debbie slips into the Lanslo Railway Station with a heavy suitcase in tow)
- Familiar Female Voice: Hey, shorty! You still haven't beaten us, yet; what do you think you're doing, abandoning the fight?
- (Debbie, shocked to hear another person's voice, stops in place and cautiously looks behind her)
- (There, she sees Mela, the stubborn Ransa, and an indifferent-looking lady she had encountered several times in battle)
- (Upon seeing Mela, without knowing why, the tears Debbie had been holding in for so long begin to flow down her cheeks uncontrollably)
- Debbie: Don't...don't ever call me 'shorty!'
- Mela: Huh? Well, how about 'brat.' then?
- Debbie: No! You lied to me...it's all your fault. If it weren't for you, everything would still be okay...
- Mela: Do you still want to fight for the Duchess?
- Debbie: ...No.
- Mela: Well then, why not join us?
- Mela: In terms of strength, though...as a stylist for the Iron Rose, you would only rank tenth, maybe.
- Debbie: (Wipes away her tears) Says who?! Just you wait, I'll be the best stylist in the world!
- (New Calendar, Year 680: Lanslo Railway Station)
- Ransa: Hahaha, Debbie was so cute when she cried that day!
- (Debbie covers her ears, pretending not to listen)
- Debbie: Nope! I told you, that never happened...
- (At this time, Ace finally shows up to meet them)
- Ace: What are you guys shouting about? I could hear Debbie all the way up here!
- Ransa: We were talking about Debble and Iron Rose. Weren't we, Debbie?
- Ace: Hey, now that you mention it...why did you join the Iron Rose, Debbie?
- (Debbie looks at Ace, then turns to look at her three companions)
- Debbie: Obviously, I joined because—
- Like reading
- Debbie: Because I needed access to the Pigeon Kingdom's library, of course!
- Sherry: ...no kidding?