Lunar SSS, Vol. 2 - To the Other Side of the Dream - Summary
To recap: Alex, a young boy from the village of Burg, together with Luna, his childhood friend, and Nall, a "flying cat" and also his childhood friend, encounter a magician named Nash who visits their hometown. Together with Nash, they meet the White Dragon and both Alex and Nash take his trial, which is the first step to becoming a Dragonmaster. Thereafter, they leave for the mainland from the coastal town of Saith on board a yacht captained by Jessica, a girl from Meribia. On the way there, they encounter Kyle, the "Pirate of Justice" who captains the Dragon Steamship Reguiss. During that encounter, a mechanical sea monster appears, with a woman riding on top who claims to be Xenobia, the leader of the Vile Tribe, who was exiled long ago by the Goddess Althena to the Frontier.
Chapter 3: The Power of Darkness
 Xenobia introduces herself as the leader of the exiled Vile Tribe. Alex at this time notices that her vessel has no mast (and, hence, no sails) and bears the appearance of a sea monster. Jessica and Nash are the only two who seem to immediately recognize who the Vile Tribe really are. Xenobia sees Nash.
Xenobia: Oh? A magician from the Magic Guild? This is turning out better than I thought. Perhaps you can be of use to me... hm hm hm...
Nash: What!? I... I... I'm still just a student. I... well... that is... I won't be of much you to you... I think...
Nall: What are you talking about? You told us you were at the top of the Elite class.
Nash: Eh, well, I can't use magic right now anyway. So I won't be of any use...
Luna: Nash, it's okay. You don't need to be afraid of her. If we all work together, then—
Nash: You don't know what kind of enemy we're up against! I learned about them from my classes. The Vile Tribe are the same ones who built the city of Vane 1000 years ago! That's who we're fighting!
At this time, Xenobia reveals that the name of her craft is the Leviathan, and it is protected against any form of attack or magic. Kyle steps up now, and tells the "old lady" that he's the keeper of the law on these seas, and he won't let her continue like this.
 Alex can clearly see that she's not human. Noticing this, he recalls an old bard's tale. Long, long ago, humans and the Vile Tribe were involved in a long, long war. The Vile Tribe was trying to gather up everything, and had the dark power necessary to turn this world into a frozen wasteland like the Blue Star. They attempted to rule the world. Althena, and the legendary Dragonmasters, fought against the Vile Tribe. And after destroying the Vile Tribe, they restored peace in the world. Alex was always scared of the Vile Tribe when he was just a kid. Now one of them is standing right before him.
 Kyle wastes no more time and says he's ready to attack—and so is Jessica. The others watch as Kyle rushes in to strike; he leaps and dives at her from the air, but is swept aside and knocked into the sea. Jessica runs to the edge of the ship to search the surface of the water for him.
Nash can't understand how Xenobia is able to use magic here, when none of the others can—and without chanting! So, this must mean that the Vile Tribe can use magic without the need for incantations...
 Alex is upset now at what just happened to Kyle (by now, he regards Kyle as a friend). He announces himself.
Alex: I won't forgive you Xenobia!
Xenobia: And just who are you?
Alex: I am Alex! Alex Noah of Burg!
Xenobia: Alex, is it? Hm, just like the Magic Emperor said...
Xenobia asks why does Alex fight; humans are mortal creatures, and they don't stand a chance. Alex says that it's because he has integrity, and the will to fight. Alex attacks, but is quickly driven back. Xenobia floats above the group and unleashes a fierce spell which knocks down Alex, Jessica, Nash, Luna, and Nall. The Leviathan opens up what appears to be a mouth, and begins to swallow their ship.
 Inside the Leviathan, both the Reguiss and Jessica's yacht were swallowed up. A roaring sound echoes around them. They also notice four jewels shining along the top of wherever they are—white, red, blue, and black in color. As Alex and his friends begin to pick themselves back up, they reflect on what just happened. Is this the same Vile Tribe of legend that tried to conquer the humans long ago? Who in the world is the Magic Emperor whom Xenobia mentioned? And how, Nash wonders, did the Vile Tribe construct such a gargantuan vessel?
Alex recalls the advice he received from Laike, back in the forest: Examine your surroundings before you act. He must do something to protect everyone else, to protect Luna, and so he begins looking around the inside of the Leviathan. Then, the ‘entrance' through which their ship was swallowed up begins to close. As the light dims, they see what looks like ropes, gears, and other machinery within the vessel.
 It's now completely dark. They hear a grunt, and what sounds like someone climbing back on deck and calling out. Shortly thereafter, Jessica lets out a short chant and light begins to fill the void. Nall, Luna, Nash, and Alex are all there and seem to be fine—a moment later, Kyle shows up, having climbed on deck.
Now they need to find a way to escape. Since there's no wind inside the Leviathan, Kyle points out that the yacht's sails won't be any good. So they'll need to board the Reguiss. He sets up a plank to bridge the two (since both were swallowed up by the machine), and, after a little argument between Jess and Kyle on who's going last, they begin to cross.
 But things can't go entirely as planned, and Xenobia shows up to ruin the fun. (Notice that now, magic is working once again.) She's under orders from the Magic Emperor not to let the Leviathan be damaged, so she'll need to eliminate the problem.
Nash and Jessica spring into action. As Xenobia fires a flame spell at them, Jessica casts a protection spell over the party, and Nash unleashes a lightning bolt in return to snuff out the flame and attack Xenobia. The witch, surprised, fades out—Jessica likewise is surprised at Nash's level of magic power. Regardless, they continue on board the Reguiss. Jessica also notices that Kyle is trying to hide a wound that he received from Xenobia's prior attack. She casts another heal spell on Kyle.
 On board the Reguiss, the others notice a very odd setup: masts, but with smoke spilling from the top, levers, valves, and much of the mechanics of the ship made out of iron. Kyle directs Alex and Nash on which levers to pull and other matters of operation. Alex asks if there is any other crew on board—that's a negative, says Kyle. This ship is set up so that someone can run it all solo. That's the genius of the great inventor Myght, who designed the vessel.
After some further direction, oars unfold from both sides of the ship, and the Reguiss heads straight towards the mouth of the Leviathan, whose door is still closing. The opening is just barely enough for the Reguiss to squeeze through—but a little too tight: one of the masts of the ship snaps off in the door as it closes right behind them. But, they're out, and it's clear as day outside. Before long a shadow is cast over them, and they notice the Leviathan is in pursuit. Kyle anticipates one hell of a pirates' battle.
 Jessica is reminded of how Kyle used to be when she sees him excited like this. Kyle pushes the Reguiss into higher gear and they speed away. The Leviathan fades away in the distance. Everyone on board is relieved and has a moment to rest. But not too long; in short order, The Leviathan reappears and begins to gain on them. Alex holds onto Luna's hand to comfort her—her hand is cold. Nash asks if Kyle can speed up, but Kyle warns that the steam engine will explode if he pushes it any harder. Another Kyle-Jess argument starts up over the broken mast as the reason they can't push the ship any faster. Nash asks then if attacking is an option; which it isn't. Apparently, Kyle explains, they used up most of their resources when they escaped.
 Nash tries another tactic. He creates a ball of lightning, much bigger than the one he unleashed on the army ants back in the forest, and fires it at the Leviathan. But, while impressive, it's absorbed by the four "jewels" in the front of the giant vessel, and appears to have no effect. Alex, though, remembers that while magic didn't have any effect outside the Leviathan, it did work from inside; so he comes up with a strategy and asks everyone, Nash included, to listen in.
 The Leviathan continues to approach, and by now is close enough to where Xenobia, still riding on top, is visible to Alex and the others. She gives a "resistance is futile" line and tells them that they can't oppose the Magic Emperor. The Leviathan then opens up its giant mouth, and kicks up a giant wave towards the Reguiss. At this point they can see Jessica's yacht still inside the Leviathan. Alex signals Kyle to start the plan, and Kyle steers the ship into position in front of the Leviathan. Nash then fires another lightning ball right into the mouth of the Leviathan. The ball flies deep into the Leviathan and seems to have no effect at first... but before long, the wave breaks, sparks fly, and the giant vessel explodes before sinking beneath the water.
 Everyone is happy with the victory. More or less...
Jess: My yacht...
Kyle: Hehe, your ship didn't really do us any good, did it?
Jess: Kyle! That yacht was very important to me! How can you—
Kyle: (smile fades) I know... I was just as concerned about your ship. But, saving our lives was more important, and that yacht very well saved us.
Jess: You're just saying that to calm me down
Kyle: What? I... well...
Alex: I'm very sorry about your yacht, Jessica...
Jess: Yeah, it's ok. Don't worry about it.
 Luna wonders if they're still safe from the Leviathan and Xenobia, but is comforted by Alex. Kyle compliments Alex's pirate tactics. Nall says he helped too—Kyle sarcastically asks if he did with his little claws. Anyhow, Alex explains the reasoning behind his tactics: he knew that attacks from the front did no good, on account of the jewels, but if they set off an explosion from inside then it might do the trick. Jessica's yacht had enough armaments on it to where Nash's lightning attack could set off an explosion. Kyle says that with tactics like that, Alex would be cut out to be a pirate captain—after all, Mel was once a pirate, too. Jessica says they should start fixing up the ship, and she gets to work. Nash only complains that they should hurry up and finish delivering him to the mainland, since he was the reason they won the battle against the Leviathan.
 There's little time to rest. Before long, a black flame burns above the deck and Xenobia appears again! Jessica casts a protection spell, but her magic is no good. Xenobia unleashes a flame burst across the deck, and stands ready to kill them all when a voice interjects:
???: Now is not the time.
Xenobia: Ma… Magic Emperor!?
 Yes, the Magic Emperor appears in full armor. Nash is shocked—even in the Magic Guild, only those in the utmost magical abilities are able to teleport on their own. This must mean the Magic Emperor is incredibly powerful.
Xenobia: Please forgive me, Magic Emperor...
Magic Emperor: That was a terrible defeat, Xenobia
Xenobia: It's... it's all my fault, Magic Emperor! If you wish to punish me...
Magic Emperor: The loss of the Leviathan will suffice to teach you this lesson, Xenobia. Over time, humans have grown much more powerful...
The Magic Emperor urges them to leave. But before they go, Alex steps up. He still hasn't forgotten about the people of Saith, and the rumors of the sea monster.
Alex: Magic Emperor! Wait!
Magic Emperor: ......
Alex: All the people on those ships you sank. What happened to them? Answer me!
Nash: Alex, what are you doing?! Just let him leave!
Magic Emperor: What is your name?
Alex: Alex! Alex Noah of Burg!
Magic Emperor: Burg, hm? I've heard of that village...
Alex: What do you mean?
Magic Emperor: Hm hm hm.... Alex, if you are powerful enough, you shall soon understand everything: about me, about the Vile Tribe, about power, and about the ways of this world. However...
The Magic Emperor waves his hand, and Luna drops to the deck like a marionette whose strings have been cut. The Leviathan fades. The Magic Emperor and Xenobia teleport away. And the Reguiss is the only thing left on the waters. Alex runs to Luna's side. "I couldn't do anything... I failed you, Luna" says Alex.
 A while later, the ship is sailing on calm waters. Luna is awake by now, but still feels uneasy. Nall asks her to play with him, but she declines. Nall goes off and asks Alex and Jessica the same; both of them decline as well. Nall can't understand why everyone is so upset if the Magic Emperor and Xenobia are both gone now. Jessica explains that they all still lost, and wouldn't be there had the Magic Emperor and Xenobia not decided to leave—everyone is still concerned about their incredible power.
 Nash suggests that their down spirits might also be on account of their hunger. They haven't eaten in a while, and so Luna offers to help Jessica prepare a meal. Both of them leave. Kyle, meanwhile, warns the others of the dangers of Jessica's food, saying it's more awful than anyone could ever realize.
 A brief while later, Kyle, Alex, and the others are on deck "recovering" from the meal. Kyle becomes curious about what Alex is after, which brings up a conversation about the Dragonmaster. Kyle asks if the Dragonmaster's power is greater than even the Magic Emperor, which Alex confirms: the Dragonmaster is the strongest warrior, and commands the power of the Four Dragons. So, Kyle says that he will become the Dragonmaster himself—he can't be weak, lest he be unable to protect that which is most important to him.
 Alex recalls a dream, where he heard someone ask him: "So, will you be the one to protect this girl?" He turns back to Kyle, and nods in agreement—that one cannot afford to be weak.
Kyle still likes the sound of "Dragonmaster Kyle". He proposes a contest between all Dragonmaster contenders; Alex says that may be a good idea, considering that now him, Kyle, and Nash all wish to be Dragonmaster.
Kyle: I should tell you... Of the three remaining dragons, the Blue Dragon lives in this sea.
Kyle: Heh heh heh, are you surprised?
Alex: Yeah. But, how do you know?
Kyle: I'm the Pirate of Justice, Kyle. This sea is like my backyard. If anyone knows about it, then it's me.
Kyle says he'll show Alex sometime later. For now, Alex's goal will be to research the location of the other dragons in Vane. Kyle isn't worried, since he's confident that he will be the next Dragonmaster, but he wishes Alex the best of luck nonetheless.
 Anyway, they have perhaps four or five more days until they reach Meribia. In the meantime, Jessica plans on preparing half the meals—that means they'll have to endure hell six more times. Eating her cooking is going to be more difficult than facing the Magic Emperor, warns Kyle. Regardless, everyone on board seems to be enjoying the cruise. Except Nash, who's seasick.
Some time later, the subject of the ship's power source arises. Kyle decides to explain how the inventor Myght constructed it. The Reguiss is a steamship, and moves with steam, gears, and pistons—no wind, and no magic. Nash doubts this, saying that it's impossible for a ship this large to move without magic. So, Kyle shows them to the engine room, where a large fire produces the steam which powers the ship. Nash still isn't convinced; he claims the fire can't sustain itself that long without magic. Finally, Kyle opens up the engine itself—something is inside! About 20-30 small, round "bugs" are burning within the fire. Kyle explains that these are Burning Bugs, found in the volcano south of the Nanza Barrier. With air alone, they can burn for up to six months.
Kyle 1, Nash 0. Nash leaves in a huff.
 On the morning of the fifth day since they escaped from the Magic Emperor, they come into full view of Meribia. Everyone stands on deck, wondering what awaits them in the city—except Nash, who is arrogant as usual. Before them lies the Katarina Zone, much different from the rural mountains of Caldor Island.
Kyle stops them from pulling into port. He's still a pirate, and a wanted fugitive, so he can't sail clear into town. They'll have to row in independently of him. But other than that, Meribia lies before them, the same place where Dyne first set out on his adventures on the mainland.
Chapter 4: World of Aspiration
 Meribia is a port town, situated on a cape in the bay between the two largest continents. It's a bustling metropolis with vendors selling goods, and fish, from across the world. Transport ships as large as three masts were setting off from the port at Meribia to nearby islands. There were many ships lined up to go between there and nearby Caldor Island—where Alex and the others lived—Rhodart Island, and Rigan Island. Ships also were bound for further-away places such as Bacuda Island and Corenos Island, and the continents to the east and west.
 By now, they're close enough to Meribia to see the different parts of town clearly. Jessica explains about the market and other sections. She points out a large mansion, which is the home of Commodore Mel.
There is no one who doesn't know the story of Commodore Mel de Alkirk, the Governor of Meribia. Mel was once a pirate who could silence even a crying child. He joined with Dragonmaster Dyne as one of the legendary Four Heroes, and fought alongside him. According to bard legends, Mel could wield a giant three-armed halberd the size of a man like a windmill, destroying any sort of monster. It was in those times that he earned the name Hell Mel [Editor's Note: the literal name is "Blood-soaked Mel", translated as Hell Mel in the Playstation English version, and Deadly Mel in the Sega CD English version]. Mel married a daughter of nobility, even though he was himself a pirate. And, because Mel was a beastman, and his wife a human, the marriage also ushered in an era of respect and cooperation between humans and beastmen in Meribia. Mel would also buy flowers just for her, and would sing beneath her balcony.
 Onto other subjects, Nall asks Jessica where in Meribia she lives. Jessica is surprised, then, hesitating, answers by waving her hand in a circle towards one side of the city: "eh... around that area..."
Before they're about to depart the Reguiss to enter the city itself, there's still some conversation about what happened before on the high seas. Alex is very grateful to the rest of the ‘crew' for helping defeat the Vile Tribe ship, while the others thank him in turn—except Nash, who says their victory was all on account of him.
Now, they can't pull into port directly, since, as mentioned before, Kyle is still a pirate and riding on a pirate ship. So the crew, minus Kyle, pack up their belongings and set out in a boat for the port. When they reach the city, they split ways: Jessica says she's headed back home, Nash says he'll be at Black Rose Street, and the three folks from Burg plan on doing a little sightseeing. Nall is looking forward to eating some fish.
 Nash intends, thereafter, on returning to Vane to check the locations of the other dragons. He asks Alex what he means to do after Meribia, and Alex says he wants to go to Vane as well to see the Magic Library and research where the other dragons may be himself. Nash strongly dislikes this—Alex isn't on the same level as him, and Vane is a city for the elite—but after some persuasion from Jessica's end, and pointing out that it was teamwork between all of them that helped them through the showdown with the Vile Tribe, Nash backs down. Jessica, after she leaves Meribia, needs to return to the Shrine to Althena.
Jessica splits. Nash says that he'll guide them to Vane later that day. It's morning now, so they agree to meet at noon that day. Nash tells them they'll rendezvous at Black Rose Street. Black Rose Street is like a window on Vane; it's where all the cool magicians hang out, and Nash is well-known and respected there. Anyhow, after they meet up at noon, they'll prepare to depart for the city of Vane. Nash splits and disappears in the crowd.
 Now it's time for Alex, Luna, and Nall to explore around town. The Free City of Meribia is nothing like Burg and the countryside of Caldor Isle. There's an incredible amount of people, all of them in crowds and pushing around. There were mages and priests of Althena in their robes, among the mix of townsfolk in regular clothes. There were also many beastmen and half-beastmen—perhaps this is due to Mel de Alkirk, the governor, being a beastman himself. Since Mel traveled with Dragonmaster Dyne as one of the Four Heroes, Alex hopes that he'll somehow get the chance to meet Mel himself.
Besides the people, there were the incredible shops in Meribia. Alex traveled to Saith twice a year, but the shops there were nothing compared to here. Meribia had everything: items, medicines, weapons, armor, books, art... It started getting to be too much to handle, and the three of them had to sit down to rest for a little bit. By chance, they see a poster with Kyle's face on it—but he looks a lot meaner in the poster than he seemed in person. Below his picture it reads:
The Pirate Kyle. Wanted for kidnapping women and plundering goods. We shall protect the city from enemies of peace like the Pirate Kyle! Be on the lookout for the Pirate Kyle on the streets at night! If you have any information regarding the Pirate Kyle, contact the Meribian Navy at once.
- Mel de Alkirk"
 Nall, Alex, and Luna can scarcely believe it. Kyle wasn't like that—a man behind them speaks up in agreement. "That's just Mel being an overbearing parent." The three of them turn around and see a grinning man, short and chubby like a raccoon. He introduces himself as Dross.
Dross: Ooh, your cat talks? He must fetch a high price as a pet—er, well, we were talking about Kyle weren't we? Yeah, so he's a Pirate, but he only steals from the rich. And nobility. He never killed anyone. You know Mel was a pirate too.
By now they realized that Dross was a man who really liked to talk, but he kept jumping from one subject to the next. Mel was a pirate, Alex already knew. After his adventures, when he settled back in Meribia, he married the daughter of the noble family that governed Meribia at that time. As expected, there was a lot of opposition since it was a marriage between a pirate and a noble lady, a beastman and a human, but their love surpassed all of that.
Before long, Mel and his wife had a baby girl. Mel was overjoyed, and declared a month of festivities. But their happiness didn't last. Soon after their daughter was born, Mel's wife fell terribly ill and passed away. Mel never remarried after that, but raised his daughter on his own. She is now sixteen years old. He dotes on her incredibly, and recently sent her to become a priestess at the famous Shrine to Althena.
 Anyway, Alex interrupts him at Nall's insistence. He thanks Dross for the information, but says that they must get going: they have a friend to meet at Black Rose Street at noon, and they need to hurry.
Dross: Wait! I have one thing I need to discuss... I'm a money-changer, see. Have you changed your money yet?
Alex: Changed... money? What do you mean?
Dross: To buy anything in Meribia, you need a different kind of money than what you have. Here, let me show you....
Dross pulls out a coin with Mel's face on one side, and the shape of a dragon on the reverse.
Dross: Without these, you can't even buy so much as fruit from here to Vane to the Nanza Barrier!
Nall: But... we bought some fried fish in the port
Dross: Eh, what?! Oh, well... that's because the port is a special area. They take all kinds of money because it's for people who just arrived in Meribia. Inside of the rest of Meribia, you'll need these.
Dross guides them to his shop as Alex thanks him.
Dross: Now the going rate is 1 silver for 0.89 coppers. But because you're such good people, I'll give you a special one-to-one exchange!
Alex: Really? Thank you!
Alex gives him all the silver from his pouch and changes his money: 72 silver. Dross gives him 72 copper coins in return. Dross wishes them all a good day and they leave to go to Black Rose Street.
 Black Rose Street is nothing like the rest of Meribia. The brick buildings crowded together contrast sharply with the open-air verandas and seaside balconies of the rest of the city. Shady-looking characters in magicians' robes shuffle about the dark, crooked corridors, between shops selling all sorts of suspicious-looking magic items, charms, fortune-telling... The eerie atmosphere of this place gives Alex and the others the creeps. They suppose they took a wrong turn somewhere, and they should have gone down some other alley, not this knockturn one.
But, no need to fear, for soon Hagrid bounds down the road and—er, wrong book. My mistake.
Alex recalls that Nash said that Black Rose Street is like a part of Vane. If that's the case, then is the entire city of Vane like this? Speaking of Nash, where is he? They begin to ask around, but no one seems to have heard of him (so much for being well-known). They finally find a hiring agency—one that contracts out work from the Magic Guild, so they decide to ask the person there if he knows about Nash. The man working behind the counter doesn't recall him, but they start describing Nash's appearance—including his hair.
"Oh, you must mean Nash Lumach of the Magic Guild! Yes, I know him... But, he left early this morning for Vane! He seemed to be in an awful hurry, too."
 Dejected and confused, the three of them head back to the main part of town and have a seat at the ‘Sea and Seagull Inn' for some lunch while they assess their options. The woman who owns the inn is very friendly and inviting, and they eat a great deal. When it comes time for the bill, Alex hands over the amount on the check.
Woman: What in the world are these?
Alex: Huh? But, we changed our money...
Woman: Changed your... Who in the world told you to do that?
Alex: Dross, the money-changer
Woman: Dross!? Not again! You poor dears, hold on—Jessica! Could you come down please?
 A door in the ceiling opens up, and Jessica descends the flight of stairs to the lower floor. Everyone is surprised, and happy, to see each other once again. Jessica takes them up to the second floor of the inn so they can talk amongst themselves. Alex first explains why they're still in Meribia: Nash left for Vane early, probably to check the library for the locations of the other dragons before Alex can.
Jessica also hears from the about what happened with Dross, and is infuriated. She calms down; she inherited her quick temper from her father. Nall can't see the similarity between the innkeepers and Jessica, so Jessica explains that the innkeepers Tabia and Brant have been friends of hers since she was very little. Her real father is... elsewhere. But that's beside the point.
Jessica says that she'll be able to give them some more money. No need to worry, either: she can take care of the bill with the innkeepers, and Dross works for Kyle anyway. So she can get the money back from Kyle at some other point, instead of Alex having to pay her back. So, they'll return to her place first for some money, and then depart the city for Meribia!
It sounds like a plan. Only, they'll have to go back to her house via the underground passages beneath the city—the Meribian Sewers.
 The Meribian Sewers are an extensive network spanning underneath the city. The passages are very narrow and mazelike, and Alex gets the feeling that, if they get lost, they might never find a way back to the surface.
 After a little walk, they arrive at Jessica's residence via a secret entrance in a courtyard fountain. Jessica found this entrance when she was playing in the courtyard when she was much younger. Jessica leads them towards the house, but warns them to stay quiet and not attract attention. Suddenly, two guards show up, but Jessica moves everyone to hide before the guards manage to see them. Alex and Nall remark that it's almost as if they're entering the place as thieves—which prompts Luna to ask if this is really Jessica's house. Jess laughs it off and they continue.
The house itself is grand. It looks like a noble's mansion. Alex and Luna have never seen anything like it before. When Jessica points out her room, they see the balcony. Luna is impressed; she remarks that it looks like the balcony where Mel would've given flowers to the daughter of nobility that he loved. Jessica nervously laughs.
 Still acting like they're thieves sneaking into the place, Jessica leads the group up a tree and onto the balcony that leads into her room (or what she claims is her room). She asks them to make themselves at home—they're friends now, after all. However, she needs to take care of something real quick, and so she asks them to stay in the room until she gets back. If someone else saw them, it might cause all sorts of complications she'd rather avoid.
When Jessica leaves, naturally, Alex and Nall can't help but look around. Nall finds that Jessica's room is connected to several other rooms, including a large formal dining hall, and a walk-in wardrobe. Alex and Luna follow after Nall (since the room is connected, they haven't really "left" Jessica's room yet). When they get to the wardrobe, Nall suggests that Luna try on some of the clothes. But, in his excitement, he gets caught up in one of the garments, and before long... crash! Clothes fly about and fall off the racks. Luna and Alex try to put them back up, when...
"What was that sound?!"
 The door flies open. An old man with white hair enters the room, and sees the three of them amid the dresses on the floor. The old man is incredibly intimidating. Alex tries to stay calm. The old man glares at them.
Alex: Um, well, he... hello...
Man: Who are you kids!?
Alex: Um, well, it's not what it seems. We...
Man: Guards!! Guards!! What are you doing? Capture these kids!!
Man: Stop these thieves!
Alex: No, there's been some sort of misunderstanding...
Man: There is nothing to misunderstand! You have snuck into the mansion of Master Mel himself!
Luna: Excuse me, sir, what did you say just now?
Man: Hmph! Don't tell me you weren't aware that this is the mansion of Mel de Alkirk, the Governor of Meribia!
 Alex, Luna, and Nall were sent to a small cell with whitewashed walls and no windows. They try to figure out what went wrong. Maybe Jessica really is a thief: she had a yacht that she could've stolen from the Meribian navy, she's friends with Kyle the Pirate, and they had to sneak into this mansion all quiet-like. After a little wait, the same man who found them in the wardrobe returns, smiling. He tells them that Master Mel would like to meet with them, frees them, and guides them to Mel's room.
 When they arrive at Mel's chambers, Alex recalls the legend behind Mel.
Mel de Alkirk. Once one of the Four Heroes who fought to protect the Goddess Althena. Long ago, he ruled over the seas around Meribia as a pirate boss. One day, quite by chance, on one of the ships he attacked was none other than Dyne on his legendary adventure. From then on, Mel's fortunes changed. Alex knew the rest of the story: he went on a great adventure with Dyne, Ghaleon, and Lemia. And, he later overcame the boundaries of race and class to marry the woman he loved. The hero of legends, talked about in bard's tales everywhere, was now standing before him.
Mel glares at them. "I am Mel de Alkirk, governer of Meribia!"
Mel demands to know what they were doing, and accuses them of wanting to disturb the peace. Luna and Alex gather up their courage to protest when... Mel bursts out laughing. He already knows about them, and was just having a little bit of fun—he admires Alex's courage in standing up to him, however.
Anyway, Mel goes on to thank them for their courage. When his own, innocent, helpless daughter was attacked by the Vile Tribe on the high seas, Alex was the one who saved her.
Alex: Saved your daughter...? Are you sure you don't have us mistaken for someone else?
Mel: No need to be so humble! I've already been told everything. You have saved my daughter from danger. And for that, you have my gratitude.
Alex: Wha... what? Are you sure you're not mistaken!?
Mel: You're Alex, right? And the girl there is Luna. And the little one over there is Nall, right?
Nall: What do you mean little, old man!?
 The version of events that Mel describes doesn't quite sound like what really happened—particularly the part about a "helpless" girl. Mel continues and says that his daughter would also like to offer her gratitude. He calls her in. "Jessica! Jessica! Come here!"
The curtains on one end of the room draw back, and Jessica herself steps forward. "Yes, father."
Jessica is now wearing the formal attire of a noble. She's using the most polite speech possible, and speaking in very soft and subdued tones. In all, she looks, acts, and speaks, completely different from when they first met.
Alex: You're... Master Mel's own daughter...
Jessica: Oh my, I must have forgotten to mention that fact. Oh ho ho!
 Mel interrupts for a moment. He's heard that Alex means to go to Vane to research more on the Dragons. Since he's headed there, Mel asks him to meet with Ghaleon and Lemia, and explain to them in further detail about their encounter with the Vile Tribe and the Magic Emperor. In the meantime, Mel will take his warships and patrol the seas—although, since it's a matter of magic, it would be better to have the Magic Guild's assistance.
Mel: I have a bad feeling about all of this. It's been fifteen years since Dyne died. Ever since then, the Goddess Althena has remained in her tower and hasn't shown herself to us. And, there have been reports that magic power in general has been weakening. On top of that, the Vile Tribe and the Magic Emperor have...
Jessica politely interrupts, and suggests that Alex and the others must be tired. So, she offers to take them to her room to rest. Mel agrees, and tells them to rest for the night; tomorrow, he'll take them to Vane aboard one of his ships.
Jessica guides Alex, Luna, and Nall to her room. On the way, the guards, maids, and other people throughout the mansion bow their heads in respect as she passes. Jessica responds with a bow and a smile. Alex and the others are still wondering what the deal is.
Nall: Why is she acting so weird? Did she eat something funny?
Alex: That couldn't be it. But she is acting strange.
Luna: Perhaps Jessica has a twin sister, and that's who this really is?
Alex: I see... Let me ask. Hey, Jessica?
Jessica: Yes, what is it, Alex?
Alex: Um... well. Are you... really Jessica?
Jessica: Yes, I am. Why do you ask such a thing?
Alex: Oh, well, see I was thinking that maybe Jessica had a twin sister. And so...
Jessica: Oh ho ho. You're quite funny, Alex. Now then, we've finally arrived.
 Once they enter, Jessica drops the act and starts speaking normally again. She explains to the others that she usually puts the ladylike act on whenever she's in the mansion. Anyway, she goes ahead and tells Alex the version of the story she told to Mel: "The yacht was attacked by the Vile Tribe. Alex came by on a boat and saved her. And, the boat that she came on to return to Meribia was damaged in the battle, and eventually started to sink. But, it sank when they were close to the port of Meribia, and so they took a boat the rest of the way in. Because they didn't have time to retrieve their things from the sinking ship, they don't have any supplies or money to continue onto Vane."
Jessica's apparently quite the storyteller. Perhaps she should consider becoming a bard instead of a priestess?
Anyway, Alex wonders why Jessica didn't just tell them from the beginning that she was Mel de Alkirk's daughter. Jessica says that so many people treat her differently when they find that out, so she generally keeps that fact hidden; Alex, though (not to mention Luna, Nall, and even Kyle) are great friends, and so now she doesn't mind so much that they all know her little secret.
 Jessica suggests that they rest up for the night; they'll leave for Vane the next morning. Jessica wishes she could go with them, since she has a close friend in Vane, but she can't take any more time off from her duties as a novice priestess. Alex asks about her friend; Jessica says it's Mia Ausa—the daughter of one of the Four Heroes, Lemia Ausa, and the next Leader of the Guild. (Jessica then jokes that Alex might be interested in her; Luna should be careful.)
 To get to Vane, they must first head south from Meribia by boat for two days. Then, it's another day by carriage along the road. And then, they will travel for half a day with a merchant caravan. From the caravan's destination, it's another half-day through the mountains on foot. They'll then stay at a village for the night, and leave the next morning to continue their journey.
Before they left, Jessica explained to them the last step to get to Vane. Since Vane is a floating city in the air, the only way to get there is by one of several transmission platforms on the ground. The closest one to Meribia is the one in the mountains that takes over four days to reach.
When they near the mountaintop transmission platform, they finally see Vane for themselves. Not just a floating city, it looks like an entire floating island , circling slowly about the Goddess Tower and its mountain.
 The transmission platform is a series of stones arranged in a circle, with another large, flat stone on the ground. An incantation is carved into it in a circular pattern. Jessica taught them the incantation necessary to activate it. Before Alex is able to step onto the platform, however, it activates itself. The platform lights up and a girl appears. She descends to the ground and apologizes for startling them. Alex introduces the group of them, and says that they've come from Burg to visit the city of Vane. Before the girl has a chance to introduce herself, the platform activates a second time and a boy, dressed in the familiar robes of the Magic Guild, appears.
 Nash... is back. And in as good a mood as can be expected.
Nash: How in the world did you get here?
Alex: It's thanks to Jessica
Nash: Jessica? What does she have to do with this?
Alex: That's beside the point. You broke your promise to take us to...
Nash: Wait just a minute!
Nash diverts his attention back to the girl who transported in before him.
Nash: Now is not the time to be arguing. Lady Mia, Ghaleon is worried. Why don't you return to Vane with me?
Mia: But, but I...
Nash continues to insist. When Alex tries to intervene, Nash gets angry, telling Alex that this is none of his concern. He explains that the person before them is none other than Mia Ausa, the sole daughter of the Leader of the Magic Guild of Vane, Lemia Ausa, and that they should show respect—and not get involved.
 Nash returns his attention to Mia, and asks once again for her to return with him. She refuses. Nash insists that she return a second time, for the sake of both Lemia and Ghaleon. Mia refuses once more, and then states, clearly...
"I intend to seek out the Dragons and take their trials. And then, once I have become a Dragonmaster, I can return to Vane. That is why you must let me leave, Nash. There is no longer any time to spare..."
TO BE CONTINUED...
 Kei Shigema speaks again. He first apologizes for releasing the novel a little later than expected.
Anyway, this time Shigema addresses how he changed the way the characters are introduced in the story. Since the format of a novel is so different from a game, it wasn't possible to introduce the characters in the same way. However, there were some elements within the Lunar universe he tried his best not to depart too far from.
First, was the music. Shigema mentions how he's kept the soundtrack of the Lunar games in mind when writing the novel. The music behind Lunar, composed by Noriyuki Iwadare, is very fitting for the Lunar world. When writing the first novel, he had Luna's main theme in mind; similarly, for the climax and final scenes of the novelization, he'll have Iwadare's music in mind then, too. The same goes for the Lunar 2 novelization (whenever that'll be).
Second, were the characters' voices. For instance, whenever he wrote Kyle's dialogue, including the occasional "Heh heh heh" lines, he had Kyle's voice actor (Tomokazu Seki) in mind. However, Shigema can't quite put his finger on if he keeps the voices from the Saturn or Mega CD (US: Sega CD) versions in mind for some of the characters.
Look forward to the third volume. Shigema signs off (dated April 18, 1997).
At the end of the book, there's a preview by Akari Funato, the illustrator of the novelization (and the same one who created the best volumes of the Lunar manga series).
A full translation of the bonus section is available here: Lunar: Silver Star Story, Vol. 2 - Bonus Section by Akari Funato.