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○ Edition #3 - Menphina, 5th Sun ○

○ Editor-In-Chief: Deidra Rose ○

Got a story or hot tip? Send it to editor@thecrystalchronicle.com or contact anyone from our staff! Freelance article submissions welcome, though we can’t guarantee publication.

May as Well Dine in Doma!

By Jereck Falarenth, Pictures By I'Shio Tavi

Many people think of raw fish when they think of Doman cuisine. While that is partially true, there is also plenty of grilling and steaming going on in Doman kitchens. Despite fish usually taking the center stage, there are a good amount of meat items on the menu, too.

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“Soul of the Dragon”, owned and operated by Soul of the Sword, is a new Doman restaurant concept located in the Mist. This is one of those restaurants that assures you of its authenticity based on the menu variation, décor and traditional service one may come to expect from Doman culture. From an expansive menu, Doman garb worn by staff, to removing your shoes when sitting at the table, this is the real deal!

Service staff is knowledgeable and confident in their menu as well as drink pairing for each menu item. From starters such as Shark Fin Soup, Sugarcane Dodo Skewers to something more traditional like Edamame, they seem to have something for everyone. Some of their appetizers are even offered in half portions for those joining for a quick bite at the unique bar. And don’t forget the Sake!

Even with how great the appetizers can be, their selection of entrees is something to write home about. The mastermind behind the menu is Ajisai Ito, who has an obvious passion for cooking. Learning what she knows from her aunt, she now can bring these unique dishes to you! The Hayashi Rice was fantastic containing tender beef, button mushrooms with a red wine demi-glaze. They have many options with a great balance between meat, fish and veggies that can appeal to most. (( http://soulofthesword.shivtr.com/forum_threads/2616533 ))

The mastermind behind the menu is Ajisai Ito, who has an obvious passion for cooking. Learning what she knows from her Aunt, she now can bring these unique dishes to you!

The dining room is very open which makes it nice that people having conversations are not trying to talk over each other. This shows that there are trying to create an experience for their guests, not just “bringing in the gil”. The food menu design is clean and easily read to help you make a solid choice. I was a bit disappointed to not see a drink menu, but our server definitely led me in the right direction with her recommendations.

This is for sure a great place to bring a date, group of friends or even just relax and be entertained by the great bar staff we observed on their trial night. Whether or not they will be able to take larger groups is yet to be determined but I am positive there will be more exciting information coming out this next week when they open their doors to the public.

All of this said, I am excited to go back with some friends to try the Behemoth Tonkatsu (how can that not be great?!). Staff and management of the “Soul of the Dragon”, you’re doing everything right!

(Located in the 5th ward of the Mist on plot number 32)
(Business Hours: Th. 9pm - 11pm EST)

Nymeia's Aid: Introduction

By Astri Berry

What a lovely day it is! I say this as I sit at a warm-wooded desk, light filtering through the windows of a temporary home. It truly occurs to me that not every one of the Eorzeans out there can be as lucky as I am. Though many that know me personally know that it is my mission in life, and that of my family, to assist in doing the work of Nymeia in bettering the fates of those who could need it. It has not been long since I have taken up the mantle of Oracle of Nymeia's Adytum, an organization that helps to give strength to those who need it, a home to those without, and skill to be useful in the future through our Triumvirate program; the Adytum strives ever to walk in the light of the Crystal and to provide succor to all of Eorzea.

As such I, Astri Berry, have cooperated with the editors of this fine newspaper to bring you a kind of advice column. It is my proud duty to introduce Nymeia's Aid to those readers who

have dedicated their time to reading The Crystal Chronicle. If there is even one person out there that I might help, one reader that could be benefitted from receiving my advice and assistance, then it is my duty to give aid. Whether you have need of advice on relationships, scholarly pursuits, history and general lore (for I have read many a book!), or simply just need a friend, I hope to be here for each and every one of you and answer all of your questions in turn.

Kindly send in all of your questions by word of mouth or through a friendly moogle and I will endeavour to answer each one as they come in. I hope to be able to help many of you in the coming moons! May Nymeia guide the steps of those who read this.

((All submissions for questions can be sent to: nymeiasaidcolumn@gmail.com))

Wandering Thoughts: Legacy of the Allagan Empire

By Henriette Arouet

If there’s one thing that defines me, it’s curiosity. I like to see what’s behind the hill, even if it’s just another hill. While I was fighting the chimera for the first time, a tiny part of my brain was asking ‘How can this even exist?’ Research and investigations were of no avail.

The Raimdelle Codex was of no help either: ‘A nightmarish combination of lion, goat, and dragon, the fell chimera has three heads, a pair of mighty wings, and a cruelly barbed tail. Its origins have been furiously debated, with some insisting the creature a cruel jest of the gods, while others believe it the twisted creation of forbidden sorcery.’

I was a true wanderer back then. I felt the pull Oschon’s Wind keenly and travelled across Eorzea a few time. I’ve seen a Hydra, Lamias and a few mirror knights, and the same question kept tugging at me.

Recently new Allagan ruins have been discovered. Far above the clouds, the floating Allagan wonder: Azys Lla, a monument to men’s folly.

The Allagan civilisation reached at it’s peak during the Third Astral Era, about five thousand years ago. The historical record are sketchy at best. Often one fact cited as absolutely true is refuted later in the same book! One thing stand out for sure: Their history is one of war and conquest.

Ishgardians know full well the power of the first brood of Midgardsormr. In Meracydia, the Allagans had to contend with both Bahamut and Tiamat. Ancient texts refer to Bahamut as the fiercest of Midgardsormr’s first brood. They also had to fight the Ianner and their primal. It’s no wonder they released so many monsters onto the world.

It was only natural for them to attempt to create better weapons. The lesser synthetic lifeforms, such as the chimera and the mirror knights are the result of their early efforts. What those monsters lacks in intelligence they make up for it in ferocity. Their later creation where much more advanced. For instance the Shabti, had built-in safety measures that would kill the monster rather than letting it being tempered by a primal.

There’s also the Iksalion, many of my adventurer colleagues hypothesize that it could be a distant ancestor to the beast tribe of the Ixali. The Iksalion and the Ixalis certainly have a similar appearance. The Iksalions are noted to have a genetic instability. They could have mutated over the centuries into the beings we now call Ixalis. It’s also possible that the Ixalis ancestral race fell into the Allagan’s hands and were experimented upon. I searched, but I couldn't find conclusive proof either way.

Primals needs two things: prayers to summon, aether to sustain. It is believed that Aether was more abundant during the third era. Where today primal needs offering of crystal to maintain their physical body, back then, the land itself was enough to feed them. Crystals were easily obtainable, boosting the power of the primals to a level that is unknown today. There is no lack of of prayers when an entire continent is suffering the ignominies of war.

The Allagans started to research better ways to deal with primals and started on a course that would bring about the Fourth Umbral Era and destroyed their civilisation.

Their hubris destroyed them, left us a legacy of monsters, and a Dalamud which masqueraded as a moon. It brooded there in our sky, full of of malice. Although millenia separate the events leading to the fall of the Dreadful Moon and the destruction of the Allagan Empire, the root cause is still the same: ambition, greed, hubris, war.

The road leading to the release of Bahamut and the Seventh Umbral Era is closely linked to the Allagan Empire, but it deserves an article of it’s own. Please look forward to it.

Be fearless,
Have no regrets,
And listen to the wind.

Mathias Rederra Wins Grindstone's St. Valentione's Day Massacre

By Talman Chryses

A different sort of celebration of St. Valentione's Day took place at this week's Grindstone. 84 contestants entered the tournament, breaking previous records. Contestants also bid for the right to fight members of the organization team, raising 20 million gil to fund future prize pools. The day saw the typically wide array of weaponry, though unarmed fighting styles and fist weapons were especially well represented. Due to the unusual numbers, the tournament was split into five initial divisions with one group competing in the Wash itself, leading to some interest tactics and mishaps. Both of the last Grindstone's finalists were eliminated early on, with the final match taking place between two members of the Noble Rogues, who had climbed the ranks independently in the Wash and Arbor divisions.

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(Credit: Aysa Farland)

Mathias Renderra defeats Fahron Elikha - Though this final match was between two members of the same Free Company, neither held back in this intense fight. The Hyuran Renderra, competing in his second Grindstone, had just defeated the ferocious Kukuri Teteri and the stoic Raik Samil for the right to face the Wash champion. The Miqo'te Fahron Elikha told the Chronicle this was her first time the finals. "I'm just a merchant girl with a desire to protect her friends, nothing special. If you ever need clothing come visit Fahron's Fabulous Finery inside of the Jade Hora in the Mist!"

Rederra was unarmed, Elikha fought with bow and daggers. The fight began with Rederra closing the gap between them instantly. Elikha switched to using her bow as a hand-to-hand weapon. There followed a series of rapid strikes and misses, Mathias taking a nasty strike to the chest with the and Fahron's characteristic mask being cracked with the force of a punch. Fahron switched to her daggers, which had served her well against the sword-wielding machinist Owen Winters at the Wash. However, Renderra was able to keep her at a distance until he could deliver a kick to head that knocked Elikha out cold.

Renderra seemed concerned for his comrade, but was still ecstatic about becoming the Grindstone champion. He made the following comment to the press, graciously ceding some of the glory: "Come to the Grindstone. Also go to Fahron's Fantastic Finery." The Chronicle learned that the store mentioned is located at the Noble Rogues' Jade Hora, which in turn is to be found in the Mist, Ward 1, Plot 54.

Jun'to Nharuya defeats Judge Jredthys - Perhaps the most heavily anticipated celebrity match, the sword-wielding Jun'to Nharuya successfully bid to fight the imposing Grindstone overseer Judge Jredthys, who stood nearly twice as tall as the Miqo'te. Nharuya needed to get creative to penetrate the Judge's heavy armor, as the man stood like an immovable rock, throwing his opponent to the ground with ease whenever he attempt to approach. Judge was eventually knocked to the ground himself, only to rise again. However, Nharuya himself remained unphased and appeared to be enjoying himself immensely throughout the fight. In the middle of being lifted off the ground yet again, he finally managed to get a powerful hit on one of Judge's slightly less armored joints, causing the man to drop him and surprisingly, yield the fight. Nharuya had the following comment to make: "WOO! FUCKIN' YEH! Tha' was 'mazin'!"

Hannah Castille defeats Warren Castille - The two Grindstone organizers Warren and Hannah Castille found themselves facing each other in a doubly unusual match up. Not only are the two siblings, but Hannah was trained by Warren with sword and shield. Both demonstrated their prowess with this fighting style and in fact, the student turned out to have surpassed the master, disabling him with a painful shield blow to the knee. In the end, there were no hard feelings. Warren was heard to say, "Why'd I teach you so good. Who let me do that?"

John Waterstrike defeats Zethie Aldis - The mild-mannered Grindstone healer John Waterstrike found himself in an incredibly long stalemate battle with the challenger Zethie Aldis. Having set aside his healing magics for a pair of daggers, Waterstrike was hurt several times, only to finally kick his axe-wielding opponent to the ground. After his victory, Waterstrike was heard to already be offering Aldis healing, perhaps out of habit. Waterstrike: "I prefer not to fight but to ease the suffering of others but...I wish to be stronger when there is a time that healing may not be enough."

St. Valentione's Day Round-up

By Talman Chryses, Pictures By I'Shio Tavi

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Amorousness Arrives in Eorzea

The St. Valentione's Day season is upon us, and the excitement has spread even to the Crystal Chronicle's offices in Revenant's Toll. To do our part, this week we'll be your guide to some of the upcoming festivities.

Festival Hubs

As usual, House Valentione of Ishgard has embarked on its mission to the other main cities of Eorzea. Festival decorations and attendants can be found spreading the love at Limsa Lominsa's Aftcastle and Ul'dah's Gold Court. Lisette de Valentione herself can be found leading the Gridania contingent at Mih Khetto's Amphitheatre. Housing districts in the Mist, the Goblet and Lavender Beds have also been decorated.

House Valentione aims to inspire the courage in lonely hearts to confess their feelings to the object of their love, taking as their inspiration the Ishgardian Saint Valentione, who famously risked everything for the sake of love. The message seems to be well received, as the festival hubs are already proving extremely popular. Throngs of interested Eorzeans are flocking to Mih Khetto's Amphitheatre especially, for festival merchandise and instruction in advanced kiss-blowing. A variety of other Valentione's events open to the public are also being prepared for the coming week.

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The Sweetheart's Festival

One promising event will be the opening of the Sweetheart's Festival in the Lavender Bed's Amethyst Shallows. The event is being hosted by the Thaliak's Embrace restaurant, located in Ward 8 of the Lavender Beds. The event is designed to appeal to couples, both young and old, and promises a wide range of attractions, such as tests of strength and dexterity, raffles and booths selling snacks, flowers...and kisses! There will also be a stage featuring performances from Khendish Monsaran (who stunned audiences at the Cloudtop Vista last week) and Etani'a Sedi.

The Chronicle was able to speak with the organizers of the event, the Thaliak's Embrace proprietors Alexius and Kokomo Edmont. The Embrace often runs seasonal events, and our readers may be familiar with their previous offerings for the Moonfire Faire and All Saint's Wake. These events proved popular beyond expectations and crowds have been growing ever since. The Edmonts remain confident that their team, which includes security, will have everything in hand. Alexius Edmont had words of praise for his loyal and dedicated staff, who are involved throughout the planning process, saying "It takes a lot of the pressure off, knowing that a group of people is reliable like that. We can go to them if we need something done, and that's what we look for in employees."

Regarding their successful events in the past, Kokomo Edmont had the following message for the public: "We're just a group of people after all, who are doing something we love. It's the community that has made us this popular and it's to them that we owe the biggest thank you. In the simplest terms, we just wish to thank them all."

((Sweetheart's Festival: Friday Feb. 10th, beginning 5PM PST, 8PM EST)) For more details, turn to this page.

Valentione's Day Masquerade Ball

The day after the Sweetheart's Festival, the Adventure League of Eorzea (TALE) will be hosting a grand Masquerade Ball at their premises at the Goblet, Ward 1, Plot 5. The event is completely catered for by the Adventure League and food and beverages will be free. Live music will be provided by Adventure League members and couples can have their fortunes told by the itinerant fortune teller Madame Rose, whose insight has won her fame in Eorzea.

The Chronicle spoke with Aveline Blue, Doyenne of the Adventure League and organizer of the event. She says that preparations are well underway for the ball, and the League has been mobilized to collect food and ingredients, decorations and furnishings, and fresh cherry blossoms to decorate the ballroom. Blue will be brewing a "special" Valentione's punch for the occasion herself.

Guests should have no trouble spotting the venue, which is currently decked out in full Chocobo regalia in recognition of the current year and the Company's mascot. The downstairs ballroom itself is quite spacious and sports a bar and an adjoining room with a hot tub. Guests are welcome to use the hot tub, though Miss Blue would like to emphasise that bathing suits are not optional. For couples seeking a spot of fresh air and privacy, the estate grounds also has a secluded nook. Guests will have to explore to find it!

Blue expects the event to be well attended. "The last party we had was around Starlight and we had to run all over getting extra chairs!" The Adventure League has a tradition of seasonal events, which they are just recently returning to. The Valentione's Ball will be their event for Spring.

The Adventure League is a free company of adventurers devoted to making the world a better place, with the motto "Your friends against doom". In this case, Miss Blue says "we are here to save people from the doom specifically of being alone on St. Valentione's eve."

((Masquerade Ball: Saturday, Feb. 11th, 5-9pm PST, 8pm-12am EST)) Guests should remember to come with masks at the ready! For more information turn to this page.

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Further Events

The Chronicle has also received news of a Valentione's event hosted at Blue Sky Ventures' tavern, the Cloudtop Vista, entitled "Mad Love". The event features live performances and raffles. (Feb. 8th, 10pm EST)) For more information, turn to this page.

The new Doman restaurant at the Mist "Soul of the Dragon" will be opening its doors for the Valentione's season. See above for our review.

Astrologian Tura Asteros will be providing seasonal card readings for patrons at the Apkallu Falls in Old Gridania on several occasions. ((9:30-11:30pm EST Thurs Feb. 9 and 4-6pm EST Sun Feb 12)) Turn to this page for more information.

Happy Valentione's Day from The Crystal Chronicle!

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