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HappyHawlucha.

The Slither's Motivations(SPOILERS)

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So from what I understand; the motivations of the Slithers involved basically moving in the shadows and using their influences to make moves against the Church of Seiros and Children of the Goddess to wipe them out. I liked that Volkhard's plan was to implant the Crest of Flames into one of Ionius' kids to give them the power to eventually challenge the church; and indirectly make Edelgard the Champion of the Slithers; I guess that he made the experiences traumatic enough for Edelgard where she would have a strong hatered for the Crest system after her experiences. A couple of questions regarding the motivations of the Slithers at other points in the story though:

- Why did they require Flayn's blood particularly? I guess that out of the 3 available Children of the Goddess Flayn was the most accessible/vulnerable to kidnap and I guess her blood was just used to give people the Major Crest of Cethleann.

- What exactly was Cornelia's goal being a Slither? I feel like given Cornelia's ranking during the war phase she had a significant amount of strength that she could very easily turn on the Church; but she defends Arianrhod alongside the Faerghus army during Crimson Flower; who are allied with the Church.

- What does Arundel hope to achieve in the War Phase of Blue Lions? I guess her just sitting back and watching as his champion(Edelgard) clashes with the Church? 

- Is there a reason why the Slithers didn't just nuke Garreg Mach with the Javelins of Light? That would obliterate the remaining Children of the Goddess right?(since Rhea is injured by one).

A lot of stuff regarding the Slithers is very deeply entrenched in the story and I really wanna find out more about them and if they are that bad as villains.

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I only played the GD route so far, but from what I know it seems that Flayn was the most accessible child of the goddess and they wanted her blood for their Crest experiments, not for any more specific reason.

It's also said that Garreg Mach is magically protected so that the javelins of light can't hit there. Once they tried and the javelin was redirected to Ailell instead, which is why Ailell is so fiery in the present. As Rhea says, "The Holy Tomb is not only the location of the progenitor god's eternal slumber, but also a sacred vessel for a power that repels evil. Supposedly, the progenitor god built the Holy Tomb herself to protect her children from the evil light."

Edited by Lightchao42

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49 minutes ago, HappyHawlucha. said:

- What exactly was Cornelia's goal being a Slither? I feel like given Cornelia's ranking during the war phase she had a significant amount of strength that she could very easily turn on the Church; but she defends Arianrhod alongside the Faerghus army during Crimson Flower; who are allied with the Church.

Pretty sure she just wanted power. Nothing more. The only reason why she defends Arianrhod is because Edelgard is attacking HER. The slithers didn't know that Edelgard would attack this place and it was a attack directly targeted to kill Cornelia. As she learned about the attack she know it was targeted toward her and because of that she used the troops of the kingdom to defend herself.

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41 minutes ago, HappyHawlucha. said:

- Why did they require Flayn's blood particularly? I guess that out of the 3 available Children of the Goddess Flayn was the most accessible/vulnerable to kidnap and I guess her blood was just used to give people the Major Crest of Cethleann.

- What exactly was Cornelia's goal being a Slither? I feel like given Cornelia's ranking during the war phase she had a significant amount of strength that she could very easily turn on the Church; but she defends Arianrhod alongside the Faerghus army during Crimson Flower; who are allied with the Church.

On Flayn, I think it's just that she's easier tbh, Indech is a 200 IQ giant f-ing turtle and Macuil is a very angry winged dragon, meanwhile Seteth and Rhea seem kind of difficult to get. As to why, it's never explained, but in one of her supports (I think with Byleth?) she says they wanted her blood because she's special, and when she says she's special she means her being a saint. So I guess they wanted the blood to distribute free Cethleann crests.

On Cornelia, I feel like it's implied she's a replacement like the other 3? If that's the case, she's just there to undermine the Kingdom using a respected position, from BL we know that her plan was to overthrow the Kingdom from the inside once the war starts. Not sure why the hell she doesn't do it on CF, the only guess I have is that CF Edelgard being "softer" doesn't give her the order to do the whole execute prince thing. Or maybe in that route it just doesn't work out because plot? tbh I feel like it would've been a stronger story if it happened regardless and we had to fight mad Dimitri instead of his "kind of stable but with hobo hair" version.
As to why she fights, it's because Edelgard wasn't supposed to attack Arianrhod, but she does and so Cornelia has to defend herself (she knows the attack is not really on the city, but on her personally and on TWSITD).

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51 minutes ago, HappyHawlucha. said:

- What exactly was Cornelia's goal being a Slither? I feel like given Cornelia's ranking during the war phase she had a significant amount of strength that she could very easily turn on the Church; but she defends Arianrhod alongside the Faerghus army during Crimson Flower; who are allied with the Church.

I think the big difference is the presence of Rhea within the kingdom during the Black Eagle route. Perhaps her and the knights being in the capitol made it impossible for Cornelia to pull her coup. In the other routes they aren't in the kingdom and Cornelia has no problem reducing Dimitri to a crazy hobo. Its also possible Rodrigue kinda forced her to stay loyal. Hubert theorizes his forces might have seized Arianrhod. 

 

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4 minutes ago, timon said:

On Flayn, I think it's just that she's easier tbh, Indech is a 200 IQ giant f-ing turtle and Macuil is a very angry winged dragon, meanwhile Seteth and Rhea seem kind of difficult to get. As to why, it's never explained, but in one of her supports (I think with Byleth?) she says they wanted her blood because she's special, and when she says she's special she means her being a saint. So I guess they wanted the blood to distribute free Cethleann crests. 

On Cornelia, I feel like it's implied she's a replacement like the other 3? If that's the case, she's just there to undermine the Kingdom using a respected position, from BL we know that her plan was to overthrow the Kingdom from the inside once the war starts. Not sure why the hell she doesn't do it on CF, the only guess I have is that CF Edelgard being "softer" doesn't give her the order to do the whole execute prince thing. Or maybe in that route it just doesn't work out because plot? tbh I feel like it would've been a stronger story if it happened regardless and we had to fight mad Dimitri instead of his "kind of stable but with hobo hair" version.
As to why she fights, it's because Edelgard wasn't supposed to attack Arianrhod, but she does and so Cornelia has to defend herself (she knows the attack is not really on the city, but on her personally and on TWSITD). 

How would she replace Dimitri and overthrow the kingdom of Dimitri has Rhea on his side? She can't claim Dimitri for murder if the pope is protecting him. Rhea is a higher authority than Cornelia there is no way for her to get ride of Dimitri if Rhea is on his side and with him in Fhirdiad. There was absolutelly no way for Cornelia to overthrow the kingdom in this situation.

Edited by Hauke

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Flayn is easy to explain, as others have done. With the other saints being impossible to capture, whether due to being too smart (Seteth/Rhea) or too dangerous (Indech/Macuil) to approach, what sounds easier? Trying to subdue actual monsters or two of the strongest beings around, one of which we definitively know can shift into a massive dragon and both occupying high-ranking positions, making their absence for any length of time too noticeable, or trying to capture a (seemingly) quite naive child who can be manipulated a lot easier by a (masked) trusted face? Which one places your underground evil organization at less risk, both materially and in terms of your cover?

For Cornelia, I'd say its a combination of the presence of Rhea and the Knights in the capitol along with what I interpret as shifting Slithers priorities in the route as a whole. While it is not explicitly stated, it feels like the Empires is far less reliant on Agarthan tech and tactics, and it shows. In the other routes, the Empire has almost completed its conquest of Fodlan by the time the timeskip ends, while in Crimson Flower, other than a few locations in Western Faerghus and whatever the pro-Imperial Houses in the Alliance are up to, the Empire has made negligible progress after 5 years of war. An interpretation of this could be that during the purges undertaken by Hubert against noble houses that would oppose El's ideology, the first strikes against the slither bois were launched. Realizing that their supposed puppet was no longer under full control, it would make sense that they would change their plans regarding Fodlan's conquest. Both the Empire and the Agarthans need each other to defeat their mutual foes, but they are always circling each other, waiting for the other to blink. Hubert's paralouge, where the surviving slither mages/scientists were extorted for their equipment after the Black Eagles put down their prototypes could exemplify the skirmishes you would see in the Shadow War; short fights where on the surface seem to be allies assisting each other, but in reality are trying to undermine one another.

Back on topic to Cornelia and why she helps the kingdom in this route instead of flipping, despite obviously being a Agarthan plant. The self-reliance showed by El and the Empire show to Agartha that she can not be as easily controlled as anticipated. Thus, in order to slow her down, they do not enact their plan to have Cornelia turn on the Kingdom and rather have her bolster it's forces. Going so far as to give her access to a few Titanus magi-tech mechs; weapons I'd imagine they do not want Rhea to hear about, as she would most certainly know what they are and where they are from, highlighting the Agarthan's desperation to inhibit El. When Cornelia was killed during the invasion of Arianhod, which as we all know was the actual primary objective of the attack; everything else was secondary, this represented a major escalation of the war. To deny the resources/location/connections provided by Arianhod, along with some petty vengeance for killing one of their top members and to remind those in the know (El, Hubert, Byleth) that Agartha still has the technological edge, Thales went ahead and nuked the fortress. 

The ultimate problem with the Agarthans is that they play such a critical role in the background and the main stage in some routes, but they are hardly explained anywhere, and ultimately come off as "evil for the sake of evil" villains we all know and revile. We see their methods, but we never really know why they do a lot of what they do, and what little information we gather comes from biased parties. This forces us to do a lot of reading between the lines, which is like trying to assemble a 5000 piece puzzle without a picture of what we are looking at. This piece of rambling was just my attempt to try and assemble a small corner of this puzzle, so take it with a grain of salt.

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