Completing ‘A Pirate’s Life for Me’ with Theodred moved the war gauge still further towards Aarbyville and unlocked a couple of new quests. The one that looked like it would contribute to the story in the most interesting way was called ‘The Betrayal’, and offered a monarch, spy, or physician the chance to break with the pirates in favour of the Guild.
I chose Orlando as my hero, and got to work on the first objective. A group of pirates had captured the Tredonian royal advisor, Admiral Horus Mandrake, and asked Orlando to take him into custody while they dealt with the rescue party that had been sent to search for him in Aarbyville.
I noticed that the Blacksail was leading the kidnappers, and seemed to speak on behalf of Aarbyville, so I’m not really sure what the internal political situation is over there right now. Has Captain Darktide forgiven her daughter’s accomplice for what I assumed was some kind of treasonous power grab, when he and Misty stole the peace tokens and kidnapped Dacian Landgraab? Who knows.
Orlando was meant to put his prisoner in the stocks, but mine have been broken since I deleted that guard, so he just stood around while I cheated to skip that step.
In the Admiral’s pocket, one of the royal guards found a note offering a substantial reward in exchange for his release.
While the Orlando was considering what to do, he had some daily responsibilities to complete. Kienna’s husband, Master Builder Marcos, came to him to ask for a noble title, and the Emperor agreed to make him a ‘Archmarquis’. I wish petitions like this were more connected to what’s actually going on the kingdom, but in this case I was able to use Grim’s mod to change Marcos’ title for real.
Orlando also spent some time getting to know his foreign ambassadors. He can’t neglect the other territories just because Aarbyville and Tredony are at war. He got on especially well with Master Chef Jaclyn of Gastrobury, who shares his eloquent trait. Her other two are ‘whale ate my parents’ and ‘industrious’; interesting that she has a legendary trait instead of a fatal flaw.
He also checked in with the shipwrecked sailor from the first Pirates and Nobles quest.
The next day, he accepted Mandrake’s terms and ‘released him from the stocks’ (i.e. I ctrl+clicked to skip that stage).
The two sims traveled to Tredony together to muster reinforcements. I don’t think I’ve seen that armour before, not in those colours anyway.
With his ambush prepared, Orlando invited the Blacksail to return to Arcadia.
It took a little while for the pirate to arrive, but Orlando wasn’t at a loss for things to do. His parrot had collected all the pieces of the Dragon Marked Treasure Map, which directed him to search for treasure ‘under an ancient tower’.
First I thought of the wizard’s tower.
When it wasn’t there, I tried the barracks.
Realising I might be looking for some ancient ruins rather than a still standing tower, I sent Orlando to the forest clearing, but had no luck there either.
The lighthouse? Nope.
In the end I gave up and googled the answer. The treasure site turned out to be by the Pit of Judgement. I’d totally forgotten about the ruins there.
Orlando found the dragon’s treasure – some ancient powder, bones, dragon teeth, and Frostfang, that sword that temporarily turns its bearer into a ghost.
The sword had fantastic stats (Power 9, Weight 2), but I sold it because I’m perfectly happy with Orlando’s Angel’s Talon; if I change my mind, Bethany can always forge a legendary quality one. I think I’ll wait until I’ve ended the war to look into what I can do with all the crafting ingredients my heroes have accumulated.
The Blacksail and his men arrived back in the kingdom, unaware that the combined Arcadian and Tredonian forces were lying in wait for him in the Judgement Area.
The game checked with me that I definitely wanted to betray Aarbyville.
I chose ‘Yes!’ and Orlando demanded the pirate hand over his sword and valuables.
Again, decent enough stats on the sword (Power 9, Weight 5), but my spy already has a legendary quality one of these.
The Admiral and his men made short work of the Aarbyvillians.
Before heading back to Tredony with the good news, he thanked Orlando and paid him his reward of 5000 gold.
The new alliance between Arcadia and the Guild Consortium really shook things up. In the next quest, ‘Under Seige’, the pirates sought their revenge by summoning a mighty armada to lay waste to the interfering nation. I could use either a knight or spy for this one, but since I’d taken Wyllas out quite recently I opted for Ishmael. Obviously he has personal ties to the pirates, but his duty to Arcadia has to come first.
The town crier was the first to tell Ishmael about the ‘massive fleet from Aarbyville just over the horizon, closing in on Arcadia quickly’.
He headed straight to the beach to help Royal Guard Regulus beat back the first wave of the attack.
But it looked like Ishmael wasn’t the only one with conflicting feelings about the pirates.
Make your mind up, Regulus.
The Emperor congratulated Ishmael on his victory at the beach, but warned him that the pirates he and Regulus had fought there were just the disorganized vanguard, and that the main attack was yet to come.
Arcadia needed a larger army to stand any chance, so Ishmael set about convincing some peasants to join him.
When I was given the choice where to station the new recruits, I had Ishmael send two to the town square and two to the front gates, hoping not to have to deal with the stupid camera issues at the beach any more than absolutely necessary.
Now there was nothing left to do but wait for the next attack, which was fine because Ishmael had daily responsibilities to complete. Thanks to all my treasure hunting, Ishmael actually had some ancient powder in his inventory, so for once I didn’t fail the one that requires him to consume an ethereal elixir and pickpocket a pirate.
The next wave of Aarbyvillian invaders arrived at the front gates, where I’d sent Ishmael to support his recruits. The pirates fought dirty, but so did Ishmael, spitting in his opponent’s face to blind him to the whirling take-down coming his way.
Hey, Nyrexis, how about some help with the war effort? Isn’t your other form a fire-breathing dragon?
Ishmael, now solid again, celebrated his victories back at home with his grandmother over bowls of hot pigeon soup. Whoops, looks like I forgot to change a couple of wallpaper sections there.
Their supper was interrupted by a very injured Regulus and an Aarbyvillian soldier he had captured. Nice work, Regulus, although I’m still not convinced your heart is in this war.
The prisoner just laughed at Ishmael’s threats and chinchilla attacks, but was terrified of whatever was in this box.
He eventually revealed that a group of pirates had been sent to make their way into the heart of Arcadia through some secret sea caves. Ishmael ventured into the cave in the center of town to fend off the sneak attack, before heading to the beach to meet with the final wave of the invasion.
There, he defeated their prized fighter Gage the Shiv in single combat, and gave the command to fire a powerful cannon at their largest ship, scattering the pirate fleet.