3/20

Back to Valka Castle again to fulfill a treasure request from a bizarrely-coifed fella named Franklin Fischer (Gaston Gray, Franklin Fischer—apparently Stan Lee gets to name all the treasure seekers). This time I’ve got my real-life 6-year-old son along to prod me if I fall asleep again. Finding it, we receive payment and an item called the “monster.” Think how cool I’ll look strutting around Nineball Island with pet monster on a leash!

Afterwards we return with Matilde to see how the sea turtle eggs are coming along. But there’s a snag: the last time we were in the turtle spawning grounds, Matlide put her photo equipment on the sea bed without telling us. When we ask her why, she gives a lame excuse about wanting to have it where she needed it. This is like throwing your wallet into the Humboldt Current because you don’t trust the banks, but whatever it takes, lady. We search around for Matilde’s camera, and of course the sharks turn up to help—and I promised my son there would be no sharks! As if that wasn’t enough, Matilde next confesses that she kept her batteries and lenses in another bag, and there’re sharks sitting on these too. I almost call off the mission, but my son finds the equipment easily enough and we go ashore to watch a cutscene about turtles running the gauntlet to the sea. I helpfully point out to my son that when he was born, the maternity ward was full of hungry tigers and he had to crawl past them on his hands and knees to the elevator before we took him home. He doesn’t buy it, nor is he amused.

Back at Nineball, this time it’s we who get to dole out the lectures: we scold a thoroughly humiliated Matilde about leaving plastic bags on the ocean floor where nearsighted turtles could mistake them for delicious jellyfish. She gives us 13,000 P in hush-money and  something called a “flat tank” before jet-skiing off with her tail between her legs.

The “flat tank” turns out to be a turtle-shell-shaped tank, and as for the ‘monster’, it’s a ridiculous-looking scaly green wetsuit complete with horns! My son makes me put on the costume and swim around the private reef, much to his amusement.

We round out the day running Pha through his training paces.

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