Into the Dark


Name: TM/IF/OTA - Into the Dark (Limsa Lominsa/Ul'dah/Gridania)
How to begin: talk to Orn Guincum (TM), Hollin Aubrey or Syro Fulke
Areas: Limsa Lominsa, Owl's Nest, Dzemael Darkhold

Last quest: Engineering Victory / Arms Race / The Mail Must Get Through
Next quest: What Glitters Always Isn't Gold

Requirements to sign up: ?
Required items: Faces of Mercy medallion, Magitek dowsing rod
Reward: ?


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Script (Limsa)

Suspicious Activities

Guincum: The prodigal recruit has returned, and, as always, your timing is impeccable. It just so happens that I have a new assignment that requires the services of a man of your fortitude and wit.
As you already know, the Garlean Emprie's march on the free city-states of Eorzea is well under way.
Our most up-to-date scouting reports confirm the existence of an imperial base of operations somewhere in the mountains of Mor Dhona, as well as increased activity in two underground locations - the Thousand Maws fo Toto-Rak in the Black Shroud and the Dzemael Darkhold in Coerthas.
We even have credible eyewitness accounts placing the imperial legatus of the XIVth Legion at each of those sites over the course of the past moons.
The question is: why? What is the significance of these locations with respect to the Empire's overarching strategy? All three are known to produce pure aetheric crystals in massive quantities. Could it be that the Garleans mean to harness their energy?
It would seem highly unlikely. We know that the Empire already possess a far more potent and efficient fuel - ceruleum.
No, there must be another explanation - and we have reason to believe that it lies deep in the bowels of the Dzemael Darkhold.
Unfortunately, the Holy See has proven wholly unwilling to grant us access to the subterrane, in spite of our envoy's best efforts. Instinct tells me it's simply a matter of wounded pride, though, rather than anything more sinister. The nobels of the city-state can't have been too happy when we drew their attention to the fact that the Empire had breached their mighty defenses and set up camp right beneath their upturned noses.
Luckily for us, we have discovered another method by which we might gain entry to the Darkhold, albeit a dangerous one.
You will need to find a way aboard the Bloody Executioners' flagship docked here in Galadion Bay, and speak with an operative named Hasthwab who is posing as a member of the crew. This man has recently come into possesion of information regarding an underground organization in Coerthas which may be able to help us.
(quest accept)
Guincum: To ensure the safety of our operative, only a handful of people have been informed of his existence, and still fewer of his identity. Absolutely no contact is allowed between him and any other member of the Knights of the Barracuda - linkpearl included. So as not to rouse suspicion, all exchanges must be conducted via a third party, and this time that third party is you.

Guincum: The Barracuda operative, Hasthwab, can be found on the Astalicia. It is thought that he may have newly obtained information which could help you gain access to the Dzemael Darkhold.

Shady Characters

Hasthwab: Ye say 'tis passage into the reekin' depths of Dzemael Dark'old that ye seek? An' 'ow do I know ye aint' one o' them 'Cuda lapdogs, come t' lick me poxy arse an' call it cherries? There be those what think they can waltz umolested 'tixt our guild and that of the 'Cudas. Mark me: right gay be the babe what suckles at both 'is mother's paps at once - but where will 'e be when the fountains run dry, eh?
(Tell me, was that convincing? I'm always afraid that one of these days I'm going to forget to drop an aitch and find msyelf dangling from the crow's nest with a noose around my neck!)
(Oh, but where are my manners!? I am Private Hasthwab of the Knights of the Barracuda - or Hasthwab Twinfists of the Bloody Executioners, to our nemesis. Pleased to make your acquaintance!)
(Ah, but we must be brief! You came for information on the Faces of Mercy, yes? The infamous company of thieves, brigands, mercenaries, and outlaws who will do almost anything provided the fee is paid up front?)
(Well, it is said that they have connections within all the houses of Ishgard, and that those connections can grant them passage into the region's many restricted areas, including the Darkhold.)
(The crystal hoard rumored to be located deep within the caves has piqued the Faces' interest, and they are actively looking for new recruits to go on retrieval runs. If you don't mind the danger that accompanies such missions, this should prove the easiest path into the Darkhold.)
(The Faces of Mercy do not maintain a permanent headquarters, and they only communicate through a complex network of contacts. Each member will only know the names of three others, and no two members will know the same three. That way, if one is caught and tortured, he cannot divulge more than the bare minimum to his captors. Of my three contacts, the one most likely to assist you is a Woodwight named Quiliane. Look for her in the hamlet of Owl's Nest.) Now sod off, ye scurvy rat, afore I slit yer gut an' use yer innards t' tie the sails! <wink>

(Owl's Nest)
Quiliane: Ye've done well t' find me, lad. Under normal circumstances, I'd kill ye right here an' now. But seein' as I'm in a right gen'rous mood this day, I'll let ye enlighten me on how ye managed t' track me down, an' save the killin' fer later.
Hasthwab Twofists!? Well, why didn't ye say as much? The ol' seadog's provided the Faces o' Mercy with plenty o' fine fodder o'er th' years. If ye're alright with him, then ye're alright with me. Still, assumin' ye're after a crack at the Darkhold, ye'll need t' commit a few simple rules t' memory.
Rule one: ye gather yerself a party of between four and eight. Ye ain't no use to us dead, and there's strength t' be had in numbers.
Rule two: anythin' ye find in the Darkhold is property o' the Faces o' Mercy 'til we tells ye otherwise. Anyone caught tryin' t' smuggle stuff out will get taken t' the Sea o' Clouds fer a nice swim.
Rule three: let us know of anyone in yer party unwise enough t' try a spot o' smugglin', and yer reward fer the mission is doubled.
And that mission is bringin' back an imperial centurion's magitek dowsing rod. Don't care how ye come by it, so long as ye do, and it's in workin' order.
Take this Faces of Mercy medallion and show it t' the House Dzemael guard posted at the Darkhold's entrance. He's one of us, and will give ye the particulars of what's waitin' fer ye inside.
(obain a Faces of Mercy medallion)

At the Darkhold

(Dzemael entrance)
Dyrstweitz: I have sworn on the ancient sigil of House Dzemael not to grant any person, be he of common or noble birth, passage into the Darkhold. Begone or I shall deliver you from this place by for- Here on behalf of the Faces of Mercy? Well, then, it seems I owe you an apology. You must forgive me. My station requires that I follow a certain protocol.
Very well then. You have your orders from your contact. Carry them out as you see fit, but keep in mind the three rules you wre told. I suggest that you exercise caution upon entering the Darkhold. Imperial soldiers will not be the only danger you face down there. The shadows hide other…more sinister creatures. Engage only what you must, and avoid what you can, if you wish to come back alive.
The depths of the Darkhold are said to contain a rift through which the creatrues of the void gain entrance to this realm. And they are not all that passes through. Foul miasmas seep into the caverns, clogging the lungs and poisoning the minds of any who ligner too long.
To ensure that the noisome mists are not allowed the opportunity to tighten their grip, I shall be casting a spell upon you that will teleport you back here to my side after the passing of seven bells.
In addition to the spell, you may leave the Darkhold at your leisure by returning to the entrance on foot.
Previous expedition parties reported finding what they called a 'magitek terminal' deep in farthest reaches of the lower chambers. It is said the device can instantly return a man to this spot, but during my dealings with the Faces of Mercy, I have found it best to take such tales with a grain of salt.
Oh, and should you come to grief down there, former visitors have confirmed that using a Return spell will transport you back to the Darkhold's entrance, so you may continue your mission, if you so wish.
And that is all the information I can give you. If I may offer an opinion, though - this is an evil place, forsaken by the Twelve and embraced by devils. Leave while you still can, and don't look back.
But seeing as you will not, the least I can do is offer you one last opportunity to make your final preparations. Speak to me once more when you are ready.

Dyrstweitz: I see you could not be swayed. Very well.
(enter Dzemael Darkhold? Yes/No)
Dyrstweitz: Thought better of it, have we? Then why do I still have the feeling you'll be back?

Bad Intentions

(Owl's Nest)
Quiliane: Made it back in one piece, I see. Ye're either strong as an aurochs, or swift as an antelope. Don't matter which, o' course, as long as ye got the job done. So, did ye!
Ah, yes, a magitek dowsing rod. Ye've done well, lad. This here piece of Garlean wizardry'll come in right handy.
Ain't got the first bloody clue how these thigns work, but we saw the imperials usin' 'em t' find crystals buried in rocks an' crags, an' that got us to thinkin' we might try usin' 'em t' find crystals buried in rocks an' crags, see? A cunnin' plan an' no mistake! Heh heh heh!
Since the Emprie arrived and started gatherin' up all the realm's crystlas, crafters've been scramblin' t' buy any they can get their hands on. A sack of fire or wind can fetch a man ten times what it did just a moon ago.
Hm? What do the imperials wat with crystals then they got 'emselves ceruleum? Well, ye can't summon a primal with a pot o' blue piss now, can ye?
Aye, ye heard me right. The Garleans are lookin' to rouse 'em a beast god, and from what I can make out, a bloody nasty one, at that. I'll let ye try an' guess wahat they plan on doin' with it.
Why, considerin' all that, I'd say seein' to the timely disembowelment of a few imperials an' righteously reappropriatin' their tools might very well count as a service t' the realm!
Aye, ye've done well, lad, an' the Faces o' Mercy won't soon forget it.
Ye can keep all that ye found in the Darkhold, less the magitek dowsing rod, o'coruse. Now scurry off back t' yer Admiral. Chances are, she's worried sick.
How'd I know ye was sharin' sheets with the 'Cudas? Simple. That slippery scrag Hasthwab sent ye. Oh, but tell him not t' worry - his secret's safe with me. Heh heh heh!


(Maelstrom Command)
Guincum: Back so soon? I trust you found a way into the Darkhold? Tell me, what did you discover?
What is this talk of a primal!? Absurd!
Yes, legend says these demigods worshipped by the beast tribes feed on the aetheric energy trapped within crystals, and yes, if the Garleans were to have discovered a way to summon the creatures, it is only logical to assume that they would require an absurd amount of manifested aether - an amount found only in areas like Mor Dhona, the Thousand Maws of Toto-Rak, and the Dzemael Darkhold….
But even if it were all true, why do it?
The Garleans' loathing for the beast tribes and their deities is well known. They've repatedly attempted genocide, for heaven's sake!
Yet even if this proves to be a mere falsehood conceived by the Faces of Mercy, the Admiral and her advisors must be informed. In the meantime, our investigation of the Darkhold msut continue. It troubles me that this Quiliane so easily saw through a disuise that has served us for nigh on five summers, but from what I gathered from your story, she needs our help as much as we need hers. For the moment, we shall refrain from severing our ties with her organization, but we must take extra care not to reveal anythign that may be used against us.
Congratulations on another assignment completed, recruit. Here are the Storm Seals you were promised.

Category: Quests


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