Minimalist: In the Endless Summer

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Operator Record
In the Endless Summer
Minimalist icon.png

"After all, throwing professionals for a loop with the problems they have is just what newcomers do, right, Stitch?"

Unlock conditions

  • Raise Minimalist to Elite 2 Level 1.
  • Have at least 50% Trust with Minimalist.
Female Zeruertzan icon.png
Admiring Durin
Male Zeruertzan A icon.png
Astonished Durin
Male Tiacauh B icon.png
Furious Archosauria
Male Zeruertzan A icon.png
Leisurely Durin
Male Zeruertzan B icon.png
Pragmatic Durin
Male Zeruertzan B icon.png
Tipsy Durin
RI Corridor
Sargon House
Acahualla Village A
Acahualla Waterfall
RI Bridge
Minimalist sees a photo of the new Durin settlement while receiving treatment on Rhodes Island. He promptly decides to go back in order to correct his people's 'incorrigible' aesthetic sensibilities.
<Background 1>
Minimalist Deculture. After seeing this photo, I've decided to return to Acahualla.
Deculture Silvermint Huh? But it was so difficult getting to Rhodes Island, and I want to explore some more—
Minimalist But you're the one who gave me this photo of the Acahualla Durin settlement!
Deculture Silvermint It wasn't me, it was Master Edge. He wanted to share their 'novel architectural style' with you, so he threw it in...
[Minimalist crumples up the photo.]
Minimalist He's calling it a 'novel architectural style'? Those idiots actually want to imitate those crude Tiacauh huts? Can you even call this a style?
Just look at the Great Aquapit. It's so stifling, but at least it's solid, neat, and has a sense of rhythm immediately recognizable as Catch's work.
Or Rhodes Island's dormitories. Their appearance viscerally disgusts me, but at least they've separated the areas by function, and you can tell they considered traffic flow when designing the space.
But these 'houses'...? Those crooked pillars, dilapidated roofs, that grotesque fencing... I refuse to even call them buildings, they're just an unaesthetic, organically constructed safety hazard waiting to collapse!
Deculture Silvermint Stitch, calm down...
Minimalist How can I possibly calm down when my people are living in something so hideous?!
As a design representative, I'll come up with a design that will convince them to willingly demolish those inexplicably slipshod dwellings!
I'll go submit a request to go back—
Deculture Silvermint Wait, Stitch, just hold on a minute––
Minimalist What now?
Deculture Silvermint You can go back if you want, but... It's going to be a real challenge to convince everyone to rebuild the settlement in a different style.
The Archosauria-esque designs were agreed upon by popular vote, and the turnout rate was pretty high, too.
Personally, it's a bit too simple for my tastes, but in the end... It's the first time everyone's been on the surface, so it's not surprising such a different style would leave a deep impression on us Durins.
Based on what I know of the public opinion, it'll be difficult for you to win everyone over before this new wave of enthusiasm passes.
Minimalist If that blasted Catch's 'Great Aquapit' could get such high approval, then surely my designs stand a chance too? I'm used to their complaints; I quarreled with them often enough while we were repairing the dome.
*sigh* Anyway, I suppose I'll just have to try my best to convince everyone.
Deculture Silvermint Even if you could, our energy supply has dwindled a lot since our Zeruertza days, and the development of construction machinery has also taken a strange detour...
It's a little tough to explain, but basically we won't have enough resources to carry it out.
Minimalist Yes, yes, my idiot countrymen are stubborn and don't even have the resources for production, so rebuilding the settlement will be quite the endeavor.
Deculture Silvermint I'm glad you understand—
Minimalist Regardless, I want to go back! I can't bear the thought that the artisans who made Zeruertza could possibly come with such abominations!
I'm going to submit an application for, so you just wait for me here!
[Minimalist runs off.]
Deculture Silvermint When Master Edge handed me that photo with such a wicked smile on his face, he didn't tell me Stitch would blow his top like this...
[Pozëmka approaches Deculture.]
Pozëmka Deculture? I didn't know you were coming to Rhodes Island.
Deculture Silvermint Avdotya! Perfect timing, go convince Stitch to stay!
<Background fades out and in>
Pozëmka I don't think you need to worry about that. The road back to Acahualla is long, and Stitch isn't like his old self. I'm sure he'll calm down on his own.
Besides, he hasn't returned to Acahualla ever since he came aboard. Maybe he just misses everyone so much he jumped on the first excuse go back.
Deculture Silvermint But you know how Stitch is...
Pozëmka If you're so worried, how about I accompany you back to Acahualla?
<Background 2>
Pozëmka Deculture, I brought some food for you two.
Deculture Silvermint Thanks.
Pozëmka Where's Stitch?
Deculture Silvermint Inside, working on his designs.
Avdotya, he isn't doing what you said he would. He's been glued to his drawings every step of the way, with no intention of giving up on what he's calling 'New Zeruertza'—
[Minimalist comes outside.]
Minimalist I can hear you, you know.
Deculture Silvermint Ahahaha...
Pozëmka Stitch...
Minimalist We should eat quickly so we can get back to our journey ASAP.
I don't care what you two think, but I've had enough of this shabby place. I won't elaborate on how awful the design is, just that all the dust and dirt give me a headache worse than a hangover.
Pozëmka I'm alright with picking up the pace, but you've been in such a rush ever since we set off—with both the traveling and the drawing. As if... you're being chased by something.
Minimalist Don't worry about it, Avdotya. I'm more than fine. I really can't stay in this room any longer, so I'll get a move on first.
Deculture Silvermint What about your food—
Minimalist I'll eat it on the go.
Pozëmka If something's happened, you ought to tell us. Don't be like Gavial when they first came to Zeruertza.
Minimalist I know!
Minimalist seems extremely impatient, but his gaze is evasive.
Pozëmka Stitch.
Minimalist What now?!
Pozëmka Look at me.
Minimalist ...
Fine, I'll talk, I'll talk.
Actually, I got this a few days before we set off.
[Minimalist hands out a sheet of paper.]
Pozëmka Your medical report?
How could this be—your Cell-Originium Assimilation rate is so high?!
Minimalist No no no, finish reading it first. Or at least Gavial's notes at the bottom.
Pozëmka 'Due to the Originium Zone's interference... fluctuation in instrument readings... this report is hereby invalidated... there is nothing abnormal about Operator Minimalist's condition, and the patient is still relatively stable...'
Is this true?
Minimalist We were both shocked when we first saw the results, but everything was fine when we reran the tests.
She also said that if the numbers were really that bad, I wouldn't be standing here like this.
But it was a wake-up call for me. While the report itself is wrong...
*sigh* Anyway, that's pretty much what happened.
Pozëmka Stitch, you can't just skim over it like that—
Minimalist Come to think of it, they never even showed me any of the design drafts before building those inexplicable... things on their own!
Combined with the fact that they're short on resources already, we really need to pick up the pace!
I'm heading out first!
[Minimalist leaves.]
<Background 3>
Croque Diamondface Welcome back, Stitch!
Edge Eartheart Welcome, welcome. Gavial has stopped by so many times, while I'd almost given you up for dead, you rascal.
Minimalist So it was you who sent the photo?
Edge Eartheart Pretty much. I happened to drink a little more than usual that day, so I had Deculture pass that photo along. I knew you'd come back after seeing it, haha.
Minimalist ...I must admit that these, hmph, 'houses,' are more... visually striking in person.
Edge Eartheart Right? I flipped through 'Stranger Things,' and decided to do as the surface dwellers do and name this style, 'Jungle Wildism'...
Minimalist Jungle... Wild... ism...
Edge Eartheart I have a knack for names, don't I?
Minimalist ...Let me just ask this first, did Master or Catch ever come back? What did they have to say about your 'Jungle Wildism'?
Edge Eartheart They haven't, Catch has only sent a few letters.
Minimalist (Whispering) Hmph, I guess there's only me around here to fix things.
Minimalist takes a deep breath.
Edge Eartheart Uh, Stitch?
Minimalist Old! Man! Edge!
[Minimalist runs up to the houses.]
Edge Eartheart Owww, Croque, if you could just help move me over there? I need to sit for a bit; my waist has been aching up recently—
Minimalist Stop right there!
You could've just written a proper letter if you wanted me to return—no, we can talk about that later, first we have to settle this 'Jungle Wildism' issue!
[Minimalist hits on the wooden houses.]
Minimalist Just look at these shabby houses wobbling on stilts behind you!
I can understand why you'd elevate the structures to deal with the humidity, but the stilts aren't even straight! They're bent! The foundations are all wrong!
I can already hear them screaming whenever you climb up and down!
And that barely boarded-up window up there? I can't tell if you're trying to keep the sunlight out or invite the rain in.
[Minimalist inspects the inside of a house.]
Minimalist And these tattered rags, broken shelves, smashed stones—even the Great Aquapit was nicer than this, and I'm talking post-explosion! This is just a pile of lousy logs!
Furious Archosauria You itching for a beating?! That's my house, boy!
Minimalist ...Huh?
(Muttering) If the local homes are already as problematic as this, the Durin settlement is bound to be even worse...
The situation is exactly as Minimalist expects.
After all, this is the first time the Durin have built on the surface. Their frantic way of thinking matches well with their Tiacauh guides, resulting in a cacophony of what they presume to be 'design,' rousing Minimalist's ire.
But after a brief tour of the settlement, Minimalist concedes that the Durin are indeed lacking the resources to demolish these whimsical structures and start over from scratch.
<Background 4>
He puts away the 'New Zeruertza' design drafts he came up with on the way, and instead goes door-to-door dispensing advice.
He makes the most pragmatic proposals, that while easiest to ignore are also the most important. Afterward, he oversees the renovation efforts by the unorganized Durin, spending entire days outside.
As for the purely whimsical designs with no actual practical issues, Minimalist spares no mercy in his critique, but chooses to turn a blind eye—
This behavior is simply unfathomable to his old acquaintances from Zeruertza.
Time slips away among the wood, stone, and tools. The vacation is about to end.
<Background 5>
Edge Eartheart Our settlement has changed so much just by having you here, Stitch.
Minimalist Hmph.
I suppose they're worthy of the term 'buildings' now, but they're still an eyesore. I wish I could see Catch's face when he comes back to all this.
Edge Eartheart Haha.
Minimalist By the way. I seem to recall you wanting me to build something by a nearby lake?
Edge Eartheart Yes, but you only have a few more days before you return to Rhodes Island. Wouldn't it be too much to handle that now?
Minimalist But what if after I leave, someone else just so happens to get inspired to build something crazy there instead...?
Edge Eartheart Then you can tear it down and replace it with whatever you want, no one would object.
Minimalist ...Can I really do that?
Edge Eartheart Why not? No one lives there anyway.
Minimalist I mean...
Forget it. Call over the others and let's get to it.
<Background 4>
[A lake can be heard.]
<Background 6>
Edge Eartheart We're here. This is the lake.
Minimalist This place...
Pozëmka It reminds me a little of... Zeruertza's 'Great Aquapit.' There's even a natural beach.
Croque Diamondface I think this is where Acahualla's Durin will develop our entertainment industry in the future, but unfortunately, we have nothing here for now.
Everyone was busy building their homes first, then repairing them, and then all the recent renovations...
Deculture Silvermint But the main reason no one's started work in this area is that the terrain causes the water level to fluctuate. The facilities would be unusable when it's too low, but they'd flood when it's too high.
Edge Eartheart I'm not forcing you to do this, Stitch. You're exhausted, so like I said, any future landscaping efforts can wait till next time.
Minimalist Forget next time, I'll do it now.
Leisurely Durin Oh, if it isn't Stitch? Thanks a lot for helping me renovate my house the other day.
Minimalist It was nothing much... Are you guys building a sandcastle?
Leisurely Durin Sure are.
[Another Durin angrily gets up.]
Tipsy Durin No you're not, I'm building it while you just sit there.
Minimalist Can you really build one here? I hear the water level fluctuates enough to create waves.
Leisurely Durin Then I guess we'll see if luck's on our side.
If it is, the sandcastle will be able to stand tall for a good while. If not, the water might just rise the moment you come up with the perfect design—
[A wave hits the sandcastle.]
The lake, which had been calm this whole time, suddenly rises into a wave, battering this early iteration of the sandcastle until it loses its shape.
[More waves appear.]
Soon, after several more waves crash onto the beach, there is no trace of it left.
Tipsy Durin Why'd you have to jinx it?! And why couldn't you have been right about the good option?!
Leisurely Durin Isn't this a good thing though?
Back when we still had the Great Aquapit, we had all the time in the world to daydream about what kind of sandcastles we wanted to build, and even got into tinkering with an Arts Unit to teach a lesson to anyone with the nerve to disturb us.
The Arts Unit worked so well that we ended up procrastinating on the sandcastles because we had the luxury of time to think of even better designs. More time than we knew what to do with.
Croque Diamondface I guess that does make sense...
Tipsy Durin Sense? This guy's been over the moons from getting a week of free mead, so of course he's actually thinking logically for once!
Deculture Silvermint Mead?
Leisurely Durin I'm ashamed to say that we made a bet this morning on whether the water would rise today, and if a sandcastle could be built... pffft.
Tipsy Durin How dare you laugh! You picking a fight?!
[The tispy Durin tackles the other and both fall into the lake. After getting out, they keep hitting each other.]
The two Durin duke it out on the soaked shore.
Edge Eartheart See, Stitch? This is what the lake is like. I can't figure out what to possibly build here, and your vacation is almost over. Just relax and we can discuss this next time.
Minimalist But I've already come up with an idea.
Pozëmka Really? What do you want to build here?
Minimalist New Zeruertza.
Croque Diamondface Stitch, did you drink before coming here?
Minimalist Of course not. We can't solve our resource issue right away, but I can at least correct the aesthetic taste of our dumb friends here.
Deculture Silvermint Oh, you meant a scale model of your New Zeruertza.
Edge Eartheart You don't have much time left, and what are you even going to build it out of? I can go help you gather materials and craftsmen, if you like...
Minimalist No need for that. I'll just build it with sand like they did earlier.
Edge Eartheart Were you napping when those two idiots were fighting?
Minimalist This is a great place for a sandcastle, even with the water and waves.
You keep saying I don't have much time left, Master Edge. So isn't something that won't require a lot of effort just perfect?
Edge Eartheart Even if you know it'll soon be washed away by the waves?
Minimalist Yes.
Edge Eartheart ...Stitch, did you mature? Maybe some kind of life-changing experience? You almost seem like a different person now.
Pozëmka Let him do it, Master Edge.
Edge Eartheart Avdotya?
Pozëmka Nothing happened to him, but the way he thinks has indeed changed of late.
Edge Eartheart Really?
Pozëmka Really.
Edge Eartheart ...Stitch, I'll believe you this time, for Avdotya's sake. But be sure to keep your word.
Minimalist Of course.
Oh, also. Can you tell the others to stay away from the lake while I'm building?
Edge Eartheart Hmm, that'll depend on how they vote. I can't stop them if everyone wants to come and see.
<Background 4>
The Durins vote to not go near the lake for the time being.
Nonetheless, the curious Durins can't help but wonder if Minimalist's sandcastle will be washed away by the fickle waves.
The intensity of their interest is especially evident from Croque's betting business.
A few even try to sneak over to the lake to check out the situation, only to be obstructed by similarly minded people in front of the blockade. Croque takes the initiative to maintain order, keeping them out.
......>br/>Finally, Minimalist arrives at the blockade the day before he is to leave for Rhodes Island—two huge dark circles under his eyes—and tells the people crowding outside that the sandcastle is finished.
[The lake can be heard.]
<Background 6>
People stop and gawk at the exquisite and concise construction of 'New Zeruertza.'
The City Forum and streets are reminiscent of the old underground Zeruertza, while the roadside buildings sport a clearly personal style quite different to the old designs: simple, smooth, and clean.
The buildings are not a carbon copy of any particular style, and even include a fair number of Acahuallan design elements, making them fit for a real jungle.
The bad-tempered architect standing before them has built an ideal city of sand by the lake.
Astonished Durin I can't believe the New Zeruertza Minimalist kept talking about was actually this stunning.
Admiring Durin I think we should promote this design style to the Archosauria and Phidia!
Pragmatic Durin So Stitch actually managed to build a model out of sand...! But you can't stay lucky forever, and once the water comes in, there'll be nothing left. What a pity.
[A strong wind appears and stirs up the lake. A wave then hits the shore.]
A strong breeze causes a wave to rise from the lake, crashing onto the shore.
Stitch's city of sand does not budge.
Edge Eartheart Stitch, are you secretly an Originium Arts expert?
Minimalist Hmph, I've always been simply an architect.
[Another wave emerges.]
Another wave surges with even greater force, this time submerging a corner of the city.
To everyone's surprise, the receding water reveal most of the buildings still intact, save for a tiny house in the corner.
The keen-eyed Edge realizes with a glance that while the first floor of the house has been completely washed away, the second floor is still attached to the ground.
Edge Eartheart Hoh, I see what you're up to—
[More waves emerge.]
The lake eventually turns fierce, and the waves, each higher and foamier than the last, batter New Zeruertza incessantly.
A sympathetic cry erupts from the crowd. Stitch's luck has finally run out, and so has the lake's favor.
Edge glances at Stitch, and sees the boy also biting his lip, but with a cocky expression.
Edge Eartheart Be frank with me. How many times did you remake this?
Minimalist The lake has been pretty nice to me, but... probably three or four times.
By the time the lake is once again still, Minimalist's sandcastle is bereft of most of its sand, but still stands on the shore.
Everyone can now clearly make out a dense steel framework inside it, its silver-white bars shining brightly under the sun.
The crowd first marvels in amazement, then applauds, and finally bursts into a laughter devoid of any malice.
In their eyes, the bad-tempered architect has finally grown a sense of humor and performed a grand magic trick for everyone to see.
Minimalist says nothing. Slightly reserved, he looks away, rubbing his nose.
Edge Eartheart Haha! This is the first time I've seen you so smug with yourself, you rascal!
Croque Diamondface Honestly, I really want to start making that design a reality right away, Stitch.
Deculture Silvermint It seems like our resource shortage has become the most pressing issue then.
Minimalist Then my work here...
(Yawns) done.
Pozëmka But... why a sandcastle?
Minimalist Like I said, this place is great for building sandcastles. It just so happens that they're in need of landscaping, so I merely seized the opportunity.

What you see now is a sandcastle, but once the water comes and goes, there's still a steel framework to look at that won't be easily washed away. Isn't it perfect?
Also, remember that medical report?

Pozëmka The one that was wrong?
Minimalist It put me on alert. When I read it, I realized for the first time that my time is limited. While it's wrong today, who knows when it will become reality?
Pozëmka ...Like the sand.
Minimalist So I had to return as soon as I could.
Regardless of my position as an architect, Zeruertza's design representative, or just someone with a slightly better sense of aesthetics than the rest of our people, I'm responsible for the kind of place we'll all live in.
And this way, even if something happens to me, my scale model of New Zeruertza will still be standing tall, waiting for everyone to begin building the real thing.
Pozëmka Just for that? You wouldn't have insisted on building a sandcastle with a steel frame instead of simply using ordinary materials, just to make that point.
Minimalist About that...
A purely aesthetic issue, as I mentioned in a chat with the Doctor on Rhodes Island the other day—
<Flashback starts here>
<Background 7>
Minimalist Doctor?
Yes, I'm waiting for Closure.
...She's doing maintenance work on the landship's core structure, so I should head back for today?
Tch, and after I finally figured out how this place was likely designed.
Minimalist You want my thoughts? As a newcomer, I'm not familiar with Rhodes Island's core structure, so what could I even tell you?
If you insist... I propose swapping in more corrosion-proof materials next time you do maintenance.
Because when all's said and done, it's not you or me that will be left behind. It's this landship's skeleton. That's what's going to endure. That's what will stand for us.
<Flashback ends here>
<Background 6>
Minimalist (Muttering) ...Tch, that was so embarrassing. How on Terra did I even manage to say it with a straight face?
Well, Avdotya. You can ask the Doctor when we're back on Rhodes Island.
I'm going to get some proper shuteye first.