Time to get a new side story done, but since it's a short and easy one, let's check out Cape Cold first.

Snowswept Town

Cape Cold is a small fishing village on the northern end of the eastern continent. There's not much to do here, but we can still check things out and maybe find some neat stuff along the way.

Also, I have to say I love having Scrutinize now.

The item itself is nothing special, just a concoction ingredient, but he's part of a neat family dynamic.

Same deal with this girl, as we'll find out when we meet her "grandparents".

Sometimes people are just nice. This isn't much of a dark past, but at least this fellow has a place where he feels he belongs.

This is the mother of that boy outside, and there's an interesting dynamic between the father's simple life and the mother wishing to return to the city, but the age aspect is distracting me a bit.

A decent helm upgrade, but we can't buy it and the steal chance is low.

Oh dear, so sorry. I was lost in thought.

The grandmother of the adopted girl.

I buy a cheap grape mainly for the dialogue.

And the husband of the city woman. Overall an interesting family dynamic with no easy answers which we'll never see the resolution of.

And this guy's deal is--

Oh yeah, certain path actions will anger citizens if they fail. This applies to Throné's Steal, Osvald's Scrutinize, Ochette's Provoke, and Agnea's Allure, all day actions carried over from OT1. Weirdly, none of the night path actions have such a penalty, so we can and will Coerce and Mug people with no consequence.

We've seen both local families now, and in fact are almost done with our daytime excursions.

All we have to do is Scrutinize the man who saved Osvald and we'll be done with day actions.

Turns out I missed four 50% coin flips in a row and now I'm locked from path actions. This happens when you fail five path actions in a city. Luckily, there's a fix.

The price depends on the town. 1500 is cheap, but not insignificant money for this stage of the game.

Of course, you can just save scum to avoid all this, and I'll just be doing that in the future.

We heard Roque mention steam engines before, so we may have run-ins with some in the future.

Snowswept Town (Night)

Now the fun can truly begin.

I mean, if you have nothing better to do, it can't hurt I guess.

I've never missed having a mama or papa once!

A nice family evening. They may not be blood-related, but they still love each other as deeply as any family could, and they're all happy together in this small village.

So naturally I beat them up and take their meager possessions.

This guy has a Buckler, which is a step up from the starting shields. Hell, turns out Osvald doesn't even have a shield equipped, so this suits him great.

This guy only shows up at night, so Temenos can't take it easy just because Osvald can do most of the info-gathering now.

This is probably the father of the dancer, since he too hates the cold. But that family seems to live at the inn, so who knows. He could just as easily be the father of the girl. Or maybe he just really admires the retired scholar.

Regardless, I'm not going to argue, as he leads to a really nice polearm upgrade. This is overkill for this stage of the game.

That's not all, as he's easy to mug and thus we can get over 10k worth of leaves just from this one guy. You do not want to neglect night path actions in this game!

This soldier is tier-4 strength, so it takes a couple of tries to even Coerce him. Luckily he's vulnerable to light magic.

I'm guessing he's the attendant of that other rich guy, since he's right in front of the inn where the city woman is at.

On the bright side, Osvald now gets a free turn at the start of battle when using Mug. Of course, I've nearly looted everything of value here already, but still.

The family struggles with their own issues, but they're still a loyal and loving family, willing to stick together through the good and the bad.

And trust me, right now they're dealing with the bad.

Also, major missed opportunity here for the city woman to be weak to fire instead of ice. Her biggest thing is she hates the cold, so she should be weak to ice magic!

It doesn't matter though, we've got her prized heirloom and Temenos looks rather fetching with it. This will be nice until we get an upgrade in a few hours and then leave it in the gear bag to gather dust for the rest of the game.

Also, all that terrorizing the locals has helped Osvald gain his second skill. I'm probably not going to use Elemental Barrage in battles for awhile because I'm worried it'd break things too easily, but I'm definitely going to abuse it with Mug to make breaking foes and uncovering weaknesses much easier.

More importantly, this unlocks Evasive Maneuvers, so less encounters to deal with!

Oh, right, this is a Side Story update. Let's do that before the village decides to throw us out.

Snowswept Town

We were told it wasn't due yet! We let our guard down! We need our midwife!

I have to go find her! No, no... I can't leave my wife's side! Ahhh! Somebody help!

This is as simple as it sounds. We simply need to bring this guy a midwife. He says she's at Flamechurch, and indeed we have met a midwife there.

I don't know how long in-game a trek from Cape Cold to Flamechurch and back would take, probably several days, so I hope the wife doesn't mind waiting that long! I'm sure she'll be fine.

Fortunately fast travel exists.

You are responsible for the lives of both mother and child.

Nothing new here, but here she is as a refresher.

Though we can rob her blind now.

I generally forget to use these companions anyway, so I'm fine ditching the historian for the midwife.

Right, let's finish this up.

Well, it looks like I'm just in time. How fares your wife?
I-it's you! Please, you have to help my wife and child!

She's the sweetest little girl you'll ever lay eyes on, and she's resting comfortably with my wife. All thanks to the midwife, of course.

She's the one upon whom you should be heaping your praise.

Of course, we never see this wife and child, and the new father seems content to prefer standing at the front of the town to spending time with them. But hey, we got paid, so a job well done.

Well, the least we could do is help this man relax.

We did good today!

Next time, we'll head to New Delsta and do "good" things there too!