Ptilopsis: Deep, Dark Dream

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Operator Record
Deep, Dark Dream
Ptilopsis icon.png

A late friend, an odd Originium device, an uncanny muttering. All these mysteries buried in the depths of her soul, buried by her.

Unlock conditions

  • Raise Ptilopsis to Elite 2 Level 1.
  • Have at least 50% Trust with Ptilopsis.
Living Room
RI Corridor
RI Infirmary
RI Room
A mechanical voice and an impassive expression conceal Ptilopsis's unfathomable secrets.
<Background black>
??? All of this information is consistent with our hypothesis.
With these data on hand, Rhine Lab's newest results now directly correlate with the ancient Sarkaz legend. I don't think this is an accident.
And if our hypothesis is verified, it will revolutionize everything we know about Originium.
People think that Originium is a source of energy, a calamity; They think it can be used as a weapon, with only narrow applications outside of that. But the truth may be something far greater.
If Originium really "stores information," just think about what that implies. From Originium, we will be able to read the story of this world, spanning hundreds or thousands of years, maybe even more...
Does this really not pique your curiosity?
Joyce I've read all your previous reports already, and agree with your conjecture.
But how can I help you?
??? You're on board then? That's great news... Thank you so much.
My plan is a bold one...
<Background 1>
Diary June 18th, clear skies
I fell asleep in the cafeteria today. Gummy was worried about me.
Dr. Silence reminded me that my "narcolepsy" has gotten worse this month.
There are more details in my physical examination report.
The conclusion of the physical: "Fatigue caused by long-term sleep quality issues."
Dr. Silence said that this was caused by the chip in my brain – Device #9.
I am aware of these things. I know my own problems much better than those who worry about me, but I still must accept their concern.
Dr. Silence has advised me to get more rest, which is a measure that I agree with. But what should I do while resting?
[Ptilopsis and Rangers are playing chess.]
Rangers ......
Ptilopsis Please continue deploying your pieces.
Rangers Ah, there's no need for that.
This round... is my loss.
Noir Corne Hoo, now that's a rare sight. When's the last time you threw in the towel?
Rangers I must say... it was a rather long time ago.
Ptilopsis According to the records dating from three hours ago, the current score is one to two.
In accordance with the best-of-three format, your two wins still makes you the victor of today's match, Rangers.
Noir Corne ......
Rangers ......
Noir Corne Gwahaha...
Rangers Ahaha... I suppose that's your way of letting this old man keep some of his dignity.
Ptilopsis No towel visible. Unable to interpret the underlying meaning of this statement.
Rangers Girl, you asked me to teach you how to play chess, and I taught you for twenty minutes.
We played just three games after that. And in the span of those three games, I'm already convinced I can't win anymore.
That's what it means to throw in the towel.
Ptilopsis Understood. Logging of idiom confirmed.
Noir Corne By the way, Ptilopsis, why'd you suddenly decide to pick up chess? You don't have much free time, right?
Hasn't it been pretty busy in Medical lately?
Ptilopsis Dr. Silence's recommendation. Acquire more hobbies to distract myself.
Rangers So you chose chess?
Noir Corne And is this really the first time you've played one of these games? You learned way too fast.
Welp, I was thinking I'd want to play a round or two with you, but let's scrap that idea.
Ptilopsis Yes, this is my first contact with board games of this type.
Previously, I learned to play different kinds of card and board games from other operators.
Most game sessions were very short in duration.
Noir Corne I can already guess what happened. They probably all got trounced by the little lady here...
Ptilopsis (Nods)
Rangers I'm not surprised though. Medical is full of bright operators, very accomplished in healing Arts. Chess is probably nothing compared to that stuff.
If you want more of a challenge, why not try the Doctor? That one's pretty well-versed in all kinds of chess variants. Mighty skilled to boot.
Noir Corne You'll be waiting around for a long time then... The Doctor would split into three pieces to work that much harder, if it was possible.
Rangers Ah, a blunder on my part.
Ptilopsis Rangers, will we be concluding today's chess session?
Rangers What time is it?
Noir Corne Lemme see... Where's my watch?
Ptilopsis 4:35 in the afternoon. There are three hours until Rangers's scheduled duty. In other words, there are still three hours left until work.
Rangers It's fine, we have plenty of time. Let's have another match then.
Ptilopsis However, one can infer that Rangers may have additional work arrangements today.
Rangers Oh?
Ptilopsis Based on the data provided by the Catastrophe Messenger and the Originium particulate matter detection data from the past ten days, one can determine that Rhodes Island may move ahead of schedule today to avoid a potential Catastrophe.
At that time, it may be necessary to mobilize defenders in advance.
Rangers I've heard the news, same as you, but the Doctor should still be talking things over with the others––
[An alarm blares as an announcement is heard over the PA.]
Broadcast Attention, all Rhodes Island personnel. Attention, all Rhodes Island personnel.
In two hours' time, Rhodes Island will conduct evasive maneuvers to avoid a Catastrophe.
Requesting all personnel inside the ship prepare for the maneuver in advance, in accordance with the staff manual.
Rangers Hahaha, guess you were right. That settles it for today's game of chess, then. This old man's got work to do.
Noir Corne You amaze me sometimes, Ptilopsis. Just how do you do it...?
Ptilopsis ?
Noir Corne Don't worry about it, just mumbling to myself. It'd be too rude to ask anyway.
<Background 2>
Diary June 22nd, clear skies
I went to see Mayer today to carry out some checks on the operation of Device #9 that I cannot carry out myself.
Mayer brought up a troubling possibility. I've thought about it before, and have my own expectations.
In other words, Device #9 has placed an enormous burden on my brain, and while this strain has not increased, my ability to withstand its impact cannot continue at its current level indefinitely.
Della was a genius. Her accomplishments –– even if flawed –– must be protected.
Device #9 does have a negative impact on me, and there's also the possibility of it malfunctioning. But had it not stabilized my prior brain disorders, I would not have had the opportunity to express these assessments.
Furthermore, Della's invention also brought me many functional improvements. Some of these were expected even before the experiment, while others exceeded expectations.
I can see the flow of Originium particles in the human body, and upon this, my understanding and control of medical Originium Arts have strengthened astoundingly.
At the time, Della believed that not only was this due to a significant increase in the computational capacity of my brain, but also because of that, I was able to unlock a portion of Originium's functionality as an information pathway.
That is what Device #9 is.
Of course, it can have other uses... It can be used as a weapon. It can save people, and it can also bring destruction. Just like Originium itself, except more intuitive to use.
This is not the outcome that Della wanted.
[Mayer is checking on Ptilopsis' Device #9; an Originium-based chipset embedded on her brain.]
Mayer Gimme a sec... Let's take a look...
The voltage is stable, and there's nothing wrong with the receiver...
I don't see any problems. Device #9 is working just fine.
Ptilopsis Are there any changes in the part that sends requests to read data?
Mayer Hrmm....
Unfortunately, nope.
Are you absolutely positive that Device #9 can output data?
Ptilopsis That was the designer's original purpose for this device.
Mayer But even after all this time, I still haven't gotten any meaningful data out of it.
And be honest with me here. You've gotta feel pretty uncomfortable with a chip inside your head, right?
Even the transmission of electronic signals will affect your body to some extent, right? I try to be real careful when remote-controlling my equipment.
Ptilopsis So far, there have been no side effects that influence physiological indicators.
Mayer Miss Dellareed really was something else... This project didn't even have the Engineering's blessing. It really is a transcendent invention.
I'm really curious about how this thing was made! Would you happen to have any kind of reference materials? Diagrams, spare parts, anything?
Ptilopsis Negative. There are no backups for Device #9.
Mayer Ahh, what a shame.
But... Joyce...
All machines are bound to have a service life.
Device #9's design is way too complicated, and I don't just mean the chip itself.
It's connected to your cerebellum and interacts with a large number of neurons in your brain.
A single point of failure in any part of the entire system will have catastrophic consequences.
I don't know what you and Miss Dellareed were thinking, but... even for Rhine Lab, this is seriously dangerous.
Ptilopsis ...Biological structures...
Mayer I know what you're trying to say.
"Biological structures, in essence, are sets of reasonably-working precise machines." Right?
Seems like something those powdered wigs in Engineering would say.
But you've gotta face up to a very real problem.
If one day, Device #9 starts to malfunction, or just stops working altogether, what are you gonna do?
Ptilopsis ......
Mayer I haven't seen the whole report, but Silence said something about Device #9 being necessary to keep you alive.
Ptilopsis Regular physical examination is necessary.
Mayer This isn't something that physical exams are gonna solve. It's a matter of life or death for you!
Ptilopsis Acknowledged.
Mayer Maybe I shouldn't be the one saying this but... you should really...
You really aren't going to ask Rhodes Island for help?
Why don't you go see Closure? She's the most extraordinary engineer I've met in all my years.
Ptilopsis Thank you for your concern, Mayer.
This question will be revisited pending future considerations.
[Ptilopsis leaves.]
Mayer Sigh...
<Background black>
Another deep dream.
In the dream, Joyce stands in a patch of dense fog, with a soft whispering in her ear.
She cannot understand what is being whispered. It is in a language she has never heard before.
It is almost inaudible, seemingly coming from a very distant place.
She wanders through the fog and continues to dream.
Light seems to filter in from a distance, piercing the fog and illuminating the surroundings.
She sees a large Originium crystal that gives off a peculiar glow.
<Background 3>
[Dr. Silence walks to Ptilopsis' side.]
Silence Hm...
So far, all your key physiological indicators are normal.
But the quality of your sleep is still poor. Are you still having those dreams through the whole night?
Ptilopsis Yes.
Silence That's not a good sign. You've been in this state for too long.
Ptilopsis The physiological indicators are not abnormal.
Silence Current physiological indicators can never be used to rule out problems, and you should be well aware of that. If you are unable to rest, it will become life-threatening, in the long run.
Maybe we should consult Dr. Kal'tsit.
I'm sure she knows some way of relieving your mental burden.
Ptilopsis Rejected. Device #9 is a confidential Rhine Lab experimental project.
Silence They might not even care about that project anymore.
Miss Dellareed's team has long been disbanded.
You might be... No, you are the only legacy of the Device #9 project.
Ptilopsis Dr. Silence, do you believe in that saying?
Silence To which saying are you referring?
Ptilopsis "Originium stores the story of this world, spanning hundreds or thousands of years, maybe even more."
Silence *Sigh*...
When I was with Rhine Lab, I didn't actually understand Miss Dellareed's project...
I can't answer that question. It's outside the scope of my expertise.
But the feedback data I've gotten from the monitor suggests your dreams are a side effect of Device #9.
It might be reconstructing fragments of information you received when awake, and then playing them back repeatedly during your sleep.
This "playback" is one of the side effects of Device #9, in the same vein as the strong logical thinking it has brought you.
Device #9 forces your brain to stay in a continuously stimulated state, which is also the source of your poor sleep quality as well as your "narcolepsy."
As you know, Miss Dellareed's project was also full of holes. Most of the fundamental stipulations were built upon conjectures, and lacked evidentiary support.
The basic principles of the experiment lacked solid ground, but they still had Miss Dellareed carry out that experiment. That's why you became what you are now.
Internally at Rhine Lab, the experiment was considered a failure, and that led you to...
Ptilopsis Objection. Erroneous account of events.
Della is not responsible for the lack of critical information in passing down that judgment.
Silence I wasn't accusing Dellareed of...
Della? Is that what you called her?
Ptilopsis Yes.
Silence ......
I know that Miss Dellareed was your friend.
Her death... had nothing to do with you. I don't have any right to blame her, but that tragedy was brought about by her obsession with her research.
I've seen... far too many tragedies like that in Rhine Lab.
Well, if it really is because of Miss Dellareed, I'm willing to have a chat with you. I'm sure Mayer would too.
But I wouldn't fixate too much on that saying.
And don't always bottle things up either.
Staying in a prolonged state of mental agitation won't do any favors for your health.
Right now, you are my assistant, as well as my friend. And as a friend...
I hope that you can live a better life.
Ptilopsis I understand.
Sorry for worrying you, Dr. Silence.
Re-registering relationship status with Dr. Silence––
Silence If you're in a good enough mood to be cracking jokes, I probably don't have anything to worry about.
Having that said, I'll be heading out to do some field work with Dr. Kal'tsit next week. I'm not comfortable leaving you alone in your current state.
In other words, if you encounter any abnormalities of any kind on the way back, you must be sure to let me know.
Ptilopsis Thank you, Dr. Silence.
Silence Oh right, if it's not too much trouble, I'm going to ask you to take this medicine back to Ifrit.
I might run a bit late tonight.
Ptilopsis No problem, Dr. Silence.
<Background 4>
Ifrit I'm bored! When is Silence getting here?
Mayer She's real busy today, so I came in her place.
Ifrit Boo... I thought I wouldn't have to do my homework if Silence wasn't coming around.
Mayer You lazy bum. You'd better watch yourself or Silence will make you sit down with the Doctor 'til you finish all your homework.
Ifrit Naw, you ain't fooling me with that. The Doctor's even busier than Silence. Swung by the office a couple times, and nobody was there.
Mayer That is true...
[Someone knocks the door, exciting Ifrit...]
Ifrit Oh, it's Silence!
[...but as the one knocking opens and enters, it turns out to be Ptilopsis.]
Ptilopsis Negative.
Ifrit It's Joyce!
Mayer Is Silence working overtime again?
Ptilopsis Yes.
This is Ifrit's medicine.
Ifrit Yuck... It's the bitter kind again...
Mayer Go set it over there. I'll put it away later.
Ptilopsis This is a snack for Ifrit.
Ifrit Woohoo! You're the best, Joyce!
Mayer Hold up! No snacks 'til you're done with your homework!
Ifrit Fine, fine, I'm doing it!
I got 70 points on my test today too!
Ptilopsis Hard work begets success. Please keep it up.
Mayer You only got a 70, and I didn't even bust out any hard questions. Better step up your game, Ifrit.
Ifrit Whatever...
Oh, by the way...
Why are you in such a good mood today, Joyce?
Ptilopsis Some positive developments occurred. But not to the extent of necessitating a display of mood swings.
Mayer ???
Wait a sec, Ifrit, how'd you know that Joyce was in a good mood?
Ifrit Huh? Isn't it obvious? When she's happy, her eyebrows go up a little bit, her forehead is more relaxed, and the corners of her mouth change too.
Mayer How'd you figure that out?
Ifrit It's just something you get used to!
[fades out and in]
Diary June 23rd, cloudy
Dr. Silence told me that I am her friend. I am very thankful to her.
Dr. Silence is a good person, but because of that, I don't want to make her life harder.
She already carries too many burdens.
Such as Ifrit's "Diαbolic Crisis." And the other problems she and Saria have to face.
But... if my fate is already sealed...
I hope Dr. Silence and Ifrit will have happy endings.
My problems are very different from theirs, but they probably all stem from Rhine Lab's experiments.
There are a lot of people like us at Rhine Lab.
Outsiders think Columbian scientific research involves a lot of human experimentation.
But that statement needs an addendum to be accurate. Many researchers are far too eager to carry out these experiments on themselves.
...and only a tiny number of them have happy endings.
<Background black>
A dream––
Joyce's dream is full of hallucinations and whispers, an illusory world full of things she does not understand.
She treks through these lengthy dreams day after day, and even if she doesn't understand them, these scenes have already become commonplace.
However, during this brief moment, she suddenly realizes that the dreamscape is becoming clearer.
The wending whispers by her ear turn to recognizable words and sentences.
The mist obscuring her vision is slowly dissipating as well.
She stands atop a lofty mountain, and gazes down at everything before her.
In front of her, a magnificent city collapses into a dazzling display of metallic dust. Towering steel structures melt like clay.
In front of her, the shadow of a terrible colossus floats in the clouds above, the writhing darkness blotting out the sun and enveloping all.
In front of her, anguished screams and desperate cries waft up from the city.
Behind her, the Originium crystal shines with a peculiar glow.
It shines.
It shines.
It shines.