Vanilla: Originium Slugs and Hops

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Operator Record
Originium Slugs and Hops
Vanilla icon.png

Man's relationship with nature is always full of issues, but down at the root, it's all people issues.

Unlock conditions

  • Raise Vanilla to Elite 1 Level 55.
  • Have at least 50% Trust with Vanilla.
Characters
Male Kuranta B icon.png
Angry Villager
Male Kuranta A icon.png
Honest Villager
Female Kuranta icon.png
Little Girl
Reserve Operator - Sniper icon.png
Operator Chard
Male Old Kuranta A icon.png
Village Headman
Blank icon.svg
Spectating Villager
Backgrounds
Desert
1
Village
2
RI Corridor
3
Village Outskirts
4
Forest
5
Cave
6
RI Room
7
Vanilla is sent to take care of an Originium slug attack. She thought her knowledge of the slugs would help her handle this case with ease, but theory and practice are two different animals.
<Background 1>
7:40 A.M. \ Cloudy
Outside a Kazimierz village
Operator Chard By the way, Vanilla, there's something I've been meaning to ask you.
What do you usually feed Kuro?
Vanilla Kuro's not a picky eater. He's usually happy to eat whatever veggies or meat I give him.
Operator Chard If you keep feeding them, do they grow up?
Vanilla Of course. When I first got Kuro, he was only as big as my palm, and now he's—Hm, why don't you come take a look yourself, Chard? He's really cute!
Operator Chard I heard that when Provence and Skyfire were out on a mission in Siesta, they came across a huge Originium slugas big as a small mountain.
Apparently it ate some kind of rock called... obsidian to grow that big.
Vanilla It's true that Originium slugs' body sizes can vary greatly depending on the environment they live in, but a small mountain?
Operator Chard If you fed Kuro some obsidian, maybe he'll grow that big too? It'd be really cool to take to the battlefield riding on him, don't you think?
Vanilla Chard—Don't ever do that.
Operator Chard (Uhh... Vanilla's glaring at me!)
Oh, looks like we're here.
[The car stops in a village and Vanilla and Chard prepared themselves...]
<Background 2>
[...before entering the village.]
Vanilla Let's see. The map's direction checks out. The village's name... Rockvile. Yeah, this is the place.
Operator Chard What's going on? This looks like a normal village to me. Forget about mutant Originium slugs. I haven't seen so much as a single slug on our way here.
Though I guess most Columbian monster movies start out like this?
Vanilla (Movie... Is that the kind of pictures that move in the screens?)
That's true... but Originium slugs are very common creatures, and we haven't even seen one on the way here. Doesn't that seem kind of strange?
Operator Chard What should we do now? Take a stroll around? Or wait for our contact to come get us?
Hold on... Is it just me or I smell something really nice?
Vanilla This seems familiar... This fragrance...
Operator Chard Hops!
Now I remember! The mission handbook says this village's main product is beer.
We're allowed to bring back some souvenirs, right? Dr. Kal'tsit won't mind, will she?
Vanilla Um, Chard, please focus on the mission at hand.
Before our departure, Instructor Dobermann reiterated several times that this is a very important mission.
<Flashback starts here>
<Background 3>
Dobermann Take a look at these reports.
[Vanilla reads the report.]
Vanilla My goodness... Originium slugs attacks are leaving villagers heavily wounded and their farms destroyed?
Dobermann Some of the wounded have been transferred to Rhodes Island from a nearby hospital. They are all from the same village, and all of them were injured in an Originium slug attack.
Aside from patching the wounded up, the villagers also wanted us to take care of the Originium slug problem for them.
The hospital was worried that they'd be infected and sent them here. Thankfully, they're only hurt. None of them are infected.
Vanilla But... unless they are under the control of Casters, wild Originium slugs don't normally attack humans, much less charge into human settlements.
There must be a reason for something like this to happen.
Dobermann According to the villagers, it was an extraordinarily huge mutant Originium slug that attacked their village.
Vanilla A mutant?!
Dobermann We don't know anything more concrete than that., but we mustn't sit by idly when the villagers there are seeking our help, with no one else to turn to.
That's why I would like you to investigate this for us. Of course, you'll have other operators assisting you, but I'm leaving you in charge of all the decision-making during this mission.
Vanilla But, Instructor Dobermann, are you sure you want me to take on a mission that has to do with Originium slugs?
Dobermann Listen, Vanilla. This isn't a test. This is a serious problem that needs your knowledge and skills to solve. This is not the time to push your luck.
I trust that you will take care of this, Operator Vanilla.
Vanilla Y-Yes!
<Flashback ends here>
<Background 2>
Vanilla (I never thought I'd get to take on a whole mission myself like Liskarm and Franka.)
(If Instructor Dobermann's willing to put her trust in me, then I can't let her down!)
(If I don't finish this mission, I'll definitely get my pay docked. Kuro and I will starve!)
That's why you need to treat this mission seriously, Chard. Don't get distracted until the mission is done!
Operator Chard R-Right...
(Why is she so serious all of a sudden?!)
[A middle-aged male Kuranta approaches Vanilla and Chard.]
??? Excuse me, but are you two the Rhodes Island employees?
Vanilla Hello! You must be...
Village Headman I am the chief of the village. I am the one who reached out to Rhodes Island.
*Sigh*... Finally...
Operator Chard Huh? Are we too late? But it doesn't look like anything happened around here—
Village Headman Come with me...
[The village chief takes Vanilla and Chard together with him.]
<Background 4>
Vanilla My goodness!
[Vanilla, Chard, and the village headman watched at the damaged hop farm.]
Operator Chard You mean... this whole plantation was destroyed by Originium slugs?
Village Headman It was about a month ago. One night, the villagers heard someone call for help from the plantation.
Everyone hurried over, only to find the nighttime guard lying on the ground, badly injured and on his last legs. The plantation was just as you see it now.
It took three whole days for him to come to.
From what he told us, that night, he heard noises out in the fields. He thought it was thieves and went closer to check it out, only to find about a dozen Originium slugs.
Operator Chard Hold on. Did he really make out how many slugs there were in such a dense forest at night?
Village Headman According to him, the smallest of them was as tall as a person, while the largest was about the size of a small house.
Operator Chard Phew... Now that's really straight out of a monster movie.
Is it possible that his eyes were playing tricks on him, and they were some other kind of wild beast?
Vanilla It's true that these bites are far bigger than what you'd expect from an Originium slug.
Operator Chard Vanilla... Have you seen slugs this big?
Vanilla (Shakes head)
Village Headman Right, no one believed him at first. A few of our young'uns then formed a search team and went to the hills behind the village to investigate.
We looked all over, and we finally got a clear view of it. It was really a giant Originium slug... The search team got ambushed too, and quite a few of them got seriously hurt.
We stopped going outside the village after that, but the slugs kept coming nonetheless. The villagers often find themselves attacked, too.
We tried asking the cities for help, but none of the nobles cared about a little village like ours. It wasn't until we took our wounded to Rhodes Island that we found out about this company.
*Sigh*... Thanks for your help.
Vanilla Don't worry, sir, we'll do all we can to solve this problem.
If I may ask, did the village have any run-ins with Originium slugs before this?
Village Headman Well, they'd pay us a visit once in a while, but usually it's just a couple of them chewing on the hops in the fields, and they'd run the moment they spotted us.
We never saw any slugs that big, much less ones that would attack humans.
Vanilla So there's always been Originium slugs in this area, then...
Village Headman The woods outside the village are pretty uneven terrain. Not even I know exactly what's going on in there.
Vanilla Aside from that, have you noticed anything out of the ordinary in the village lately?
Village Headman What do you mean?
Vanilla Like, have there been any strange visitors? Or a sudden change in climate? Please try to remember. All of this is very important.
Village Headman If I have to say, the only brewery in the village went out of business three months ago. Some of the men were attacked by the slugs when they were delivering hops to other towns.
Operator Chard Any ideas?
Vanilla (Shakes head)
Excuse me, sir, but could you take us to the other places where there have been sightings of Originium slugs?
Village Headman Alright. Come with me.
Operator Chard Huh? What are those folks doing over there?
<Background 2>
Operator Chard Why are there so many dead slugs on the ground?
Vanilla ......!
Village Headman Stop what you're doing!
[A Kuranta villager was knocked down by another...]
Little Girl Dad—
[...as the girl rushes to his side.]
Angry Villager Chief, perfect timing. We found the culprit behind all this.
Spectating Villager No wonder we couldn't catch them. All of the Originium slugs have been hiding here with this family.
Horrible. How could someone keep these monsters inside their home?
Vanilla Did all of you kill these Originium slugs?
Angry Villager Chief, we all saw it. You have to make sure this guy's dealt with properly.
[The knocked down villager rises up.]
Honest Villager *cough* *cough*...
You killed all my Originium slugs. What more do you want?
Angry Villager What more do we want?!
Do you know how many people were hurt because your slugs bit them? They might even get infected! Let's not even mention our crops! You can't stay here anymore! We won't allow it! Your whole family's got to go!
People like you should die in the wilderness!
Spectating Villager Yeah! To hell with all of you! Leave Rockvile right now!
Honest Villager That wasn't my slugs...
Angry Villager No? Then why don't you explain why you were keeping these monsters?!
Honest Villager Why should I tell you?! It's not my slugs' fault that your brewery went under!
Angry Villager Skurwysyny—[note 1]
[The two villagers entered a fight with each other, until...]
Village Headman Stop!
Explain this. What's with the slugs?
Honest Villager They're for brewing...
Angry Villager Huh?
Honest Villager It's something that I discovered by accident. When Originium slugs eat hops, they secrete a special liquid, and it makes beer taste much better.
I told the others about it before. I wanted to promote this kind of brewing, but everyone said I was nuts...
Operator Chard Well, that's something. I didn't know you could do that. Now I gotta try it.
Vanilla I think I heard the traveling caravans mention something like that when I was back home.
Angry Villager Hey, who the hell are you two? Stay out of this!
Village Headman They are Oripathy experts I invited to help us solve this problem. Mind your manners.
Operator Chard Hey, dude, chill out a little. Think about it. These Originium slugs are tiny. How are they supposed to bite anyone? It'd take years for them to chew up a huge plantation like that.
Besides, didn't your search team find mutant Originium slugs outside the village? There's no reason to slaughter your neighbor's pets.
Angry Villager *Spit*—Say whatever you want, but I never saw any of those giant slugs they kept talking about, and all the people on the search team are in the hospital right now.
Who knows if these Oripathy-infested bugs knew some weird kind of Arts? If he's keeping these filthy things in his house, he's got to be up to no good!
Vanilla Originium slugs can't get Oripathy!
Angry Villager —?
Vanilla We only call them Originium slugs because their outer shells contain Originium. They don't have any crystals inside their bodies.
They've been studied by many, many biologists out there, and even though no one knows why, no one has ever found an Originium slug that's been infected with Oripathy naturally.
And it's nearly impossible to come down with Oripathy from an Originium slug bite.
Please don't frame an innocent man with baseless accusations like that.
Angry Villager Why should I believe—
Vanilla Sir, please give us a little time. We'll get to the bottom of this. But before we do, could you please not make things so hard on this man?
Village Headman O-Of course...
Vanilla Please let us go outside the village to investigate. My guess is that the Originium slugs who wrecked the fields didn't stay in the village.
Village Headman Yes, of course, but I'm afraid you might find the woods and hills outside a little difficult to traverse with just the two of you.
Angry Villager Alright, I'll go with them. Let me see for myself those mutant slugs they're talking about.
Vanilla Alright, that sounds good. Time is tight, so let's get going.
<Background 4>
[Vanilla, Chard, and the enraged villager from before are in the middle of a nearby forest.]
Operator Chard Ugh. The forest is too dense. I can't see anything.
Angry Villager Hmph, and here I was wondering how amazing you two would be with how cocksure you were.
Better drop the tough act and go home.
Operator Chard Look! Behind you!
Angry Villager Eek!
[The villager looked back, but...]
Angry Villager There's nothing there...?
[...much to Chard's joy, who whistles in response.]
Operator Chard Hah, look at you. You say all that, but you're actually scared shitless, hoping we don't run into any of the slugs.
Angry Villager You—
Vanilla Quiet down, please. Now is not the time for a fight.
Humans may be afraid of Originium slugs, but they're really scared of humans too. They don't usually go anywhere near human settlements.
Even if they run into humans by chance, they usually run away on their own. So they shouldn't be that close to the village. We just left the village, so it's not a surprise that we haven't found any yet.
[Vanilla and Chard discusses the Originium slug matter.]
Operator Chard So what do you think of this whole thing?
Vanilla Normally, when a swarm of wild slugs suddenly becomes aggressive, the most likely reason is that their habitat has gone through a sudden, drastic change.
When that happens, you just have to guide them properly. That's usually all that it takes to calm the aggressive slugs down.
But to figure out what exactly happened here, we have to first find where the Originium slugs lived in the forest.
Operator Chard This is a huge forest, though. How are we supposed to look?
Vanilla Hm... Let's see.
If the slugs are regularly attacking the village, that has to mean their area of activity has gotten very large. If we look carefully, we should be able to find...
[A nearby bush rustles.]
Vanilla Look, there it is! Chard, look!
Operator Chard What's this...? Wild hops?
Vanilla Yeah! Look, and it's pretty spread out. I don't think it grew here naturally.
According to the village chief, the Originium slugs here probably love eating hops, and when they don't digest the seeds, they get spread all over.
Operator Chard So you're saying that wherever we find hops, they've been there?
Vanilla I can't say for certain, but it's very likely!
Operator Chard Amazing, Vanilla!
Vanilla H-Hey... no big deal.
Angry Villager ......
<Background fades out and in>
[After a while of following the Originium slugs' trail...]
Angry Villager We've been following the girl for ages. Where's the mutant slugs you've been talking about?
Operator Chard Look over there.
Angry Villager Hah, save it. You're not fooling me twice—
Operator Chard (Pulls bowstring)
Angry Villager Even if you—Eek!!!
Vanilla Hold on, Chard!
It's not hostile.
Operator Chard (Stares)
Vanilla It's noticed us...
[The Originium slug turned around.]
Vanilla Look, it's leaving.
Operator Chard Phew... Scared me to death. I wasn't sure I could take that slug down with how big it is.
Angry Villager Hey... Why did you let it go?
Operator Chard It didn't attack us. There's no reason to provoke it.
Angry Villager You've got to be kidding me!
If you don't kill it now, it might come back to ruin our crops and attack our people!
Vanilla That's not the mutant Originium slugs we're looking for...
It noticed us just now, but it didn't attack us. That means its habits are no different from regular Originium slugs. It won't come close to humans.
Angry Villager It could just be—
Vanilla I promise you. We'll do our best to solve the problem the village is saving, but can't we spare the innocent?
Angry Villager Hmph... You'd better keep your word.
[Vanilla talks with Chard.]
Vanilla Thanks, Chard.
Operator Chard No problem. I trust your judgment.
So doesn't that mean we've found the slugs? That just goes to show what an expert in Originium slugs you are.
Vanilla You're exaggerating. I just know a thing or two about them, is all.
I used to run into critters like these a lot back in Vouivre. I've always thought of them as nothing different from other animals. They're all cute little things.
Instructor Dobermann always tells me that I hesitate too much when facing Originium slugs in battle, and I know that's not a good thing...
But when we're not in a fight, I want to save as many of them as possible, if that's okay. I mean, they're innocent lives...
Operator Chard Hey, cheer up a little. I think you're right.
I never had a pet Originium slugs, but I had other pets when I was a kid. I know how it feels.
And actually, if we get the chance, I kind of want to meet your little Kuro sometime, hahaha.
Vanilla R-Really...? We'd love that!
Operator Chard Hey, is there a cave over there...?
Angry Villager This place... If I remember correctly...
<Background 6>
Operator Chard Dear God...
Vanilla ......
Angry Villager This... This...
The three of them walk up to the cave's entrance.
Half of the cave is colored dark yellow with the Originium waste strewn inside, while the waste itself is densely covered with eggs.
Further inside the cave, red glows can be seen pulsating rhythmically in the shadows like a breathing pattern, enough for the three to just barely make out their terrifyingly large silhouettes.
Angry Villager Help... help me—
Operator Chard Shut up! Don't move. If you startle them, it's all over!
Vanilla... What do we do?
Vanilla ......
Operator Chard Vanilla...?
Vanilla Let's get out of here for the time being...
<Background 5>
Operator Chard I know different countries have different standards when it comes to Originium waste disposal, but this... This looks illegal just about everywhere.
Vanilla Excuse me, sir? You said you worked at the brewery before, right?
Angry Villager Right...
Vanilla Did you know all the Originium waste was dumped in the mountains after the factory shut down?
Angry Villager It wasn't me... I didn't do this...
No... It was the boss who made us do this. I didn't know this was going to happen—
Hey, what are you two spacing out there for? Hurry up and kill the slugs!
Vanilla How come...?
Angry Villager What?
Vanilla How come you're making that sound like the natural thing to do?!
They lived here, and it was you who ruined their home. In the end, you even want to kill them because of your mistakes?
Operator Chard Vanilla, calm down...
Angry Villager Come on... They're just slugs—
Vanilla Just Originium slugs...?
You're the ones who turned them into mutants, and now you're saying you want to kill them without batting an eye.
When you don't understand the truth, your instinct is to lay the blame on those around you, condemning them to death.
Is it so easy for you to judge whether a life has value?!
Operator Chard Vanilla, snap out of it!
If Chard didn't stop her, Vanilla would not have noticed how tightly she was gripping her halberd.
Vanilla Sorry...
Operator Chard We'll talk sense into this guy later. What do we do now?
Vanilla There's... nothing we can do.
<Background 2>
Vanilla I'm sorry. We came too late. We weren't able to... save your Originium slugs...
Honest Villager Don't say that. You cleared my name, and for that I'm thankful.
Vanilla The man earlier wanted us to tell you that he's sorry for what he's done. He said he won't give you any more trouble.
Operator Chard *Sigh*, and here I really wanted a sip of your secret brew.
Honest Villager Hahaha, looks like that's not going to happen.
I'm just glad we got the misunderstanding cleared up... but even though this is behind us, everyone here is probably traumatized by Originium slugs, and I don't want to give anyone any more trouble.
But I'm sure someone out there has discovered this same brewing technique. Maybe you'll come across a special slug beer someday. Make sure you try some when you do.
Operator Chard Hah, I gotta keep that in mind.
Little Girl Ma'am, are there really mutant slugs outside?
Vanilla Don't you worry. They've gone somewhere else. The Originium slugs won't attack the village anymore.
Little Girl Really? I was so scared when everyone said there were monsters outside...
Vanilla You don't need to be so scared... Actually, they're really scared too.
They aren't monsters. They're just like us. They are just living things trying their hardest to survive in this world.
Little Girl Mm... Oh yeah, you should take this.
Vanilla Is that...?!
Little Girl When those men charged inside, I hid one of the slugs on me... but I only had the time to save one of them.
I guess I can't keep it. Could you take care of it?
Vanilla I'll look after him, yes!
Thank you...
<Flashback starts here>
<Background 6>
Operator Chard The explosives are ready to go. All that's left is setting them off, and there's more than enough in there to blow the entire cave.
But... Vanilla, are you sure there's no other way?
Vanilla It's obvious that these are the slugs that attacked the village...
They've lived in an Originium-dense environment like this for so long that their bodies have mutated. Not only have they grown dramatically, they've gotten very aggressive.
We don't know the exact cause, but we don't have the time to get to the bottom of it.
If we just leave them be, they will destroy all the villages nearby sooner or later... We have to do this.
Operator Chard Hey, you okay?
Vanilla Chard, give me the trigger.
Operator Chard You don't have to—Alright...
Vanilla Sorry...
[Vanilla hesitantly detonated the explosives, causing the cavern to collapse and taking the mutated Originium slugs along with it.]
<Flashback ends here>
<Background 7>
Vanilla Yep... Incubator, food, water... Everything's the same as Kuro.
This is your new home. Welcome home!
Franka Whoa, another one? Not bad, Vanilla. You find yourself a new pet every time you go out on a field mission... Did Dr. Kal'tsit really give you permission to keep so many pets?
Vanilla Of course. Just like Kuro and Tiny, he's registered.
Franka This place is starting to feel like an Originium slug museum... What's the new guy called?
Vanilla He looks a tad bit rounder than Kuro. Okay, you'll be Puffball! Kuro, Tiny, be sure to get along with Puffball. Don't pick on him!
[Vanilla starts to sob.]
Franka Vanilla? Why are you crying...?
Vanilla Huh? Am I?
I... I'm fine... *Sobs*... Franka... I... I didn't run away this time... I did it...
*Sobs*... Waaaaaaaaaahhhh!!!

Notes

  1. "Son of a b***h" in Polish