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uhhhhhhhh i love my friends
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You never thought an air conditioned building could actually make you feel warmer. The shelves are full of colorful products designed to entice you to buy whatever well-preserved item advertised. If you were not quite so well-trained, you might be tricked into purchasing something. Now, you’d better find Talita.
You’ve arrived at Co-Op Jubilife!
You catch a glimpse of yourself as you pass by a store window. You’re still processing everything you were told by your dads earlier. You never thought of yourself as anything close to a Legendary, and yet here you are helping save the world. Wild!
Your sibling leads the charge, being the alpha that they are. Co-Op Jubilife is pretty close by your apartment building, so it’s fine to walk there. Even though it’s midnight and really frickin’ cold.
SOLEIL: We should bring Talita with us.
NURU: Huh. Doesn’t she, like, live here?
SOLEIL: Don’t we?
NURU: Yeah, we do!
SOLEIL: Why can’t we just bring her?
NURU: You’d have to ask her about that, not me! Anyway, I was about to say that I like going to supermarkets and opening big bags of store brand cereal and eating them in front of the cashier.
NURU: Y’know about, like, alphas?
SOLEIL: Like, in animal groups?
NURU: Yeah!
SOLEIL: What about them?
NURU: I am that.
SOLEIL: You’re an alpha… because you eat cereal out of the bag before paying for it?
NURU: Hell yeah. Isn’t that such a fucking power move?
SOLEIL: I guess so…
NURU: I just like to assert my dominance to strangers just in case they want to mug me.
SOLEIL: Have you ever been mugged by a cashier?
NURU: Well, no.
SOLEIL: So what’s the point?
NURU: I like to feel strong.
SOLEIL: …Please don’t do that while we’re at the store, okay?
NURU: Okay!
You go on and get. You’re now in the hallway of your apartment building. Nuru’s looking at you with a shit-eating smirk. They probably want to say something stupid to you.
You haven’t forgotten. You’re having fantasies about eating at an all-you-can-eat buffet right now, actually. Unfortunately, there’s no food in the house. All the more reason to head along to the supermarket.
Of course. The power of technology is staggering! This little rectangle that you hold in your hand is filled with magic rocks that know where you are at all times! Some people think that’s creepy, but you just think it’s convenient. Your Dad tells you to hurry and catch up.
No point. Dude wears the same polo shirt no matter where he goes or how cold it is outside. You guess his arm hair protects him from the bitter cold of Twinleaf.
Uh, nope. Everything looks pretty much the same as before. Pop has a trench coat on now. It looks like they’re actually about to head out. The fact that they’re going to the store the following midnight strikes you as rather odd, but not odd enough for you to ask about it. You think you’ll slip your shoes on and tag along. Maybe text Talita to come, too. You guys like hanging out at grocery stores and supermarkets. They’re nice.
Who cares, right? They aren’t dirty or anything… Meanwhile, you’ve checked the time, and it looks like you slept all the way until midnight. The long way ‘round. You just got a solid 23 or 24 hours of rest. Surely you’ll be less tired now. You should go out and see if everyone went to the store while you were gone.
You have a magnificent dream about saving the world.
NURU: Why are you standing in the same pose?
DAD: Does that matter?
NURU: I guess not. I was just curious. Are we getting a dog?
DAD: What? No.
SOLEIL: Nuru told me we were getting a dog…
DAD: They lied to you.
NURU: I really thought we were getting a dog!
DAD: What part of what I said made you think that?
POP: Ahem… It’s not relevant, Cyrus.
DAD: Yes, you’re right.
NURU: Well, if we’re not getting a dog, what’s the fuckin’ point?
POP: Language…
NURU: Sorry. Can we get a dog?
DAD: No! Will you just listen for a second?
SOLEIL: C’mon, Nuru… Shh…
NURU: Okay, sorry. Why no dog?
DAD: Stop asking about the dog!!
POP: Ahem… We have something important to tell you.
POP: …Soleil? Did you just fall asleep? …Standing up?
SOLEIL: Huh? What? No…
DAD: This is a serious discussion!
SOLEIL: Right… sorry…
DAD: Good grief.
POP: Anyway… You’ve studied legendary Patrons in school before, yes?
NURU: I’ve never studied anything before in my entire life.
POP: Are you familiar with them, at least?
NURU: Yeah, I was joking.
SOLEIL: Yes, we studied them…
DAD: Then you know of Mizu, Chiaki, and Koma, the guardians of spirit?
SOLEIL: Yes… Mizu guards Willpower… Chiaki guards emotion… and Koma guards… knowledge, I think…
NURU: I didn’t remember ANY of that.
DAD: That’s correct, Soleil. The reason we asked you two to keep your Patrons hidden from the rest of the world…
POP: The world is simply too dangerous for you to be open with your gifts.
DAD: You are the reincarnation of Mizu, Soleil. And Chiaki, Nuru.
SOLEIL: Right…
NURU: Whoa!!
SOLEIL: Didn’t you know that?
NURU: Yeah, but I forgot.
POP: Now that you’re both 18, we feel it necessary to explain your duties as the guardians of willpower and emotion.
SOLEIL: Oof… Responsibility…
DAD: Don’t groan. It’s your birthright.
NURU: Yeah!! Our birthright!!
SOLEIL: So am I, like, literally guarding some kind of physical embodiment of willpower…?
POP: No, it’s just your duty to protect humanity from threats to freedom of will.
SOLEIL: Huh… I really don’t know what that means.
POP: It’s… complicated.
NURU: Is there a threat to willpower slash emotion right now??
DAD: Yes. That’s what your training has been for. Ordinarily, the Alpha One, Taji, would explain all of this to you. But unfortunately, Taji is… out of commission, as it stands.
NURU: Did you just tell us “God is dead”?
DAD: Well, no. No one has heard from them in quite a long time now.
NURU: Wild! How come nobody’s rioting about this?
POP: Because they don’t know.
SOLEIL: Huh… That’s pretty scary.
DAD: It is. And it’s our duty to protect this world.
SOLEIL: I guess that’s okay…
NURU: Dad? What about Koma? The guy who guards knowledge or whatever?
DAD: Ah, yes, I was getting to that. I am Koma. Cyrus Aelius is only my chosen name.
NURU: That’s wicked! My dad’s a legendary Patron!
SOLEIL: So are we, Nuru…
NURU: Man, this is the coolest birthday present ever!
SOLEIL: Pop… Are you a legendary Patron as well…?
POP: …Yes, though my role is largely irrelevant here. I am Kusa, the protector of nature. My chosen name, as you know, is Mandevilla Rohan.
NURU: Haha, if your job is to protect nature, you’ve sure done a shitty job.
POP: …Aptly put.
NURU: Sorry, that was rude.
POP: Hoho, do not worry. You’re right, of course. Few spots of untouched nature remain. But that is hardly a pressing concern compared to everything else.
DAD: Anyway, there is… a lot more we have to tell you. We can talk about it more in Sandgem.
NURU: We’re going to Sandgem?!
DAD: Yes. We can explain a lot more once we’re in Pop’s lab.
SOLEIL: Oh, wow… We’re gonna get to see Pop’s lab…
NURU: We should hit the beach while we’re there, too!
POP: Hoho, we’ll see. We’re going to head to the supermarket in a bit to buy supplies, as we may not return here for a while.
SOLEIL: Aw… Okay…
DAD: We know that it’s inconvenient, but the fate of the world is at stake.
SOLEIL: That’s fine, then. We’ll help save the world.
DAD: Excellent. Why don’t you try to get a bit of sleep before we head out?
SOLEIL: You don’t have to tell me twice…
NURU: How am I supposed to sleep when I’m this hyped?!
DAD: Figure it out.
POP: Some tea may help!
You guess that’s an accurate enough command for what you do next. You follow Pop into the room, where Dad seems to be giving a warning to Nuru, similar to the one Pop just gave you.
SOLEIL: Hey, Pop. Dad’s calling a family meeting.
POP: Hm. Is that so?
SOLEIL: Any idea what’s up?
POP: I suppose… it is your eighteenth birthday…
SOLEIL: Okay… Is he gonna wish us a happy birthday…?
POP: There is a matter we must discuss with you.
SOLEIL: Sounds… spooky…
SOLEIL: What…? I was trying to sleep…
NURU: Dad says he wants to call a family meeting or something!
SOLEIL: It’s midnight…
NURU: Yeah, well I didn’t make the rules!!
SOLEIL: Is this about the pickles…?
NURU: Somehow I doubt it!
SOLEIL: What, then?
NURU: How should I know?? Maybe we’re getting a dog.
SOLEIL: Wow… I hope so…
NURU: Now I can’t wait to talk about it! I’ve wanted a dog for a while!
SOLEIL: Huh… What makes you sure he’s talking about a dog?
NURU: Didn’t you hear me?? I told you Dad wanted to talk to us about getting a dog.
SOLEIL: That’s not what you said…
NURU: How would you know? Your memory’s awful anyway!!
SOLEIL: Hm… That’s true… So we’re getting a dog?
NURU: Yeah! Oh man, I can’t wait. Go get Pop. I’ll move the couch back for you.
SOLEIL: Okay… Thank you…
NURU: No problem!
Unfortunately, there’s no time for that. Your sibling, Nuru, has wandered into the room and has begun kicking you in the ribs.