3/28

Ciceros Strait, daybreak—Following a tip from Finley, I headed for the East Undines to look for the white dolphin. Somewhere in the Cross Rift, I found a pod bottlenosed dolphins, one of which was trapped below by a tiger shark. I dove down and drove away the bully, earning the undying gratitude of the dolphin, a rare albino. I decided to call her Lilly, after Dr. John C. Lilly, the visionary scientist/crackpot who began his strange career trying (unsuccessfully) to teach dolphins to speak English. And because she’s white. And because it’s almost Easter. And because Lilly Munster was my surrogate mother.

Lilly

Right away I decide to put Lilly to work as my chauffeur to the Wreck of the Flamingo to find that bottle of vinegar Jean Eric wants. It was really unfair to bring an untried (not to mention shark-traumatized) dolphin into this, as the wreck is swarming with great whites. It’s agonizing, because I can see the sparkle of something alluring far down below, but the sharks are in our way, and Jean Eric advises us to return at another time of day. When would that be? I thought sharks got even rowdier at night.

Just for kicks, I watch the sun set in Ciceros Strait.

Nevertheless, I return at sunset, this time with Pha. The great whites have cleared out, and in their place are the not-so-handsome but relatively harmless sandbar sharks. I easily retrieve the bottle (you can always tell a salvage item is part of your quest because it has a red gleam), then return to Nineball. Jean Eric is ecstatic that I found the bottle—he’d been asked for it by a friend who’s in a cooking competition, and this here bottle of vinegar that’ s been lying at the bottom of the sea for who knows how long is the ultimate vinegar that’s going to be his top secret cooking ingredient! I don’t make this stuff up, folks.

Anyway, for finding this condiment I get a sweet 5,000 P and a pair of sparkly swimtrunks. I also salvaged a flamethrower, but unfortunely I can’t use it—I’m told it’s an antique Chinese flamethrower from the Song Dynasty (ca. 10th-13th c.). Together, that brings my tally up to 263,822 P.

At the end of the day, the Fabulous Finley shows up to snark about my finding the albino dolphin, then challenges us to put on 3 more dolphin shows. “You must put on shows and keep people of my choosing entertained,” he says. Can you believe that guy?

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