King of San Ilia, or Robo-Pope, is a character in Paradox.
At some point in the Paradox universe, there was an assassination attempt on him using a time bomb. He survived the bomb but lost half of his body in the explosion. He only survived thanks to the technology in the Ancient Temple Ruins, which augmented the missing parts of his body with Mecha technology. But the person responsible is unknown. The main suspect is Lazarus, but there isn't sufficient evidence to arrest him.
San Ilia Castle one
Luka first meets the King of San Ilia in the royal castle.
At first, one of the guards greets Luka and puts him on the waiting list for an audience with the King, but when he sees that he's Luka, he realises Ilias herself decided to baptise him. Bear in mind Ilias is supposed to be dead. The King had given special permission for Luka to see him, and the guard takes Luka to see him immediately.
The King introduces himself as Peter the 14th, the current rule of San Ilia. As Luka is greeting him, Ilias loses her patience, and asks if the King has any information on the White Rabbit, but the King answers that he has never heard of this 'White Rabbit'. But he does have some information concerning Luka's father, Marcellus. They had been investigating him as he was possibly related to the King's assassination attempt because Marcellus is connected to Lazarus.
While they did gather some information on him, they didn't learn anything Luka doesn't already know. He used to help people on his adventures in the wake of the Great Disaster, but he left several years ago on a journey and never returned.
Not only this, he has been seen entering the Underground Library, just below the very castle. That was over a year ago, but he did leave a book in the library, "Four Animists and their Sources". The book Luka sought in the original trilogy. The King would happily give it to Luka right now, but the Underground Library has been infested with monsters who possess books, due to the influence of chaos. No one goes down there anymore. But Luka and the party are prepared to get it themselves
When they party collect the book, they return to the Pope and ask if he needs anything. He replies that he does, but the Knight Commander intervenes, claiming it's too dangerous for a group of less than ten people. Typically, an entire platoon of soldiers would be assigned to it. She suggests that they should have Mithril equipment, at the very least to stand a chance. The Pope agrees, and would prefer them to have Mithril equipment as well, but he will still go with them if the party think they are prepared.
If they agree, the Pope tells them his plan. In a few days, the Pope will travel to the Ancient Temple Ruins to pray to Ilias. However, the temple is infested with extremely powerful monsters, so he needs an escort. His elite knights would accompany him, but they've gone to assist the war with Grangold, and are unavailable. And he can't pick up a group of mercenaries, as they are untrustworthy, and the ritual must remain a secret. So he wants Luka to instead. He trusts Luka, and he is strong enough to fight these monsters. So he wants Luka to escort him into the Ruins this time.
The Pope will make his preparations to leave, but he asks Luka to head to Luddite Village and wait for him there. In Luddite, there should be a priest who will show Luka the way to the Ruins. The Priest there is in reality, a spy for the Church, watching over the Anti-Makina faction.
Upon meeting the Priest, he guides them to the Ancient Temple Ruins, informing them about what it's like in there on the way.
Waiting at the entrance is the Pope, and allows the Priest to return to the village. He informs Luka that he can't help him fight, so he'll be relying on him to protect him, along with the other party members.
Sonya promises she will smash anyone who would harm his holiness, and he replies that shouldn't she smash her foster parent, Lazarus, too? Sonya is shocked he would say such a thing, but the Pope tells her he was only joking. He was blown up by her uncle's bomb, so he naturally holds a grudge. He isn't a saint after all. Sonya reminds him that he is the Pope, the holiest saint in the entire world, and this amuses the Pope. Sonya thinks she's going to hell after this, but the Pope tells her she won't.
Ancient Temple Ruins 1F
Upon entering the temple, the party is shocked to see the advanced technology within, and they realise that this is the reason why it had to remain a secret. Ilias finds it strange that such technologically advanced facility would be underground.
The Pope informs them that when the Church discovered this place, they could think of no way to safely make it known to the public. So they kept it a secret instead. They come by here occasionally to extract the various makina technology to analyse in the Church, and continue to examine it to this day. There were no records of who or what was here, but they did leave information behind regarding the technology. On purpose.
Ancient Temple Ruins 2F
Entering the second area of the Ruins, he informs the party that only a select few members of the Church know of these Ruins, and what truly lies within them. The people who know of it outside of the Church are only a few trusted professionals. Ilias is concerned why he would reveal it to Luka so easily then. They're practically strangers in the eyes of the Pope. He tells her that it wasn't by pure chance.
The Church has been watching them for a while now. The Church is aware they aren't part of the anti-makina faction, and Luka is the first person to be blessed by Ilias in decades. But the main reason is that they have all entered Tartarus, and come out alive. But he isn't aware of them travelling to a parallel world. Luka asks how he knows this, but he doesn't reveal much. The Church knows they entered and left the Tartarus, but they don't know what the party did in the Tartarus.
Since the Pope has revealed so many of his secrets to Luka, he would like Luka to reveal some of his, but he doesn't have to right now.
Ancient Temple Ruins 3F
On the lowest floor, Luka is beginning to have his doubts that the Pope merely came all the way down here to pray. The Pope reveals that this is true. The ritual is a mere ruse to deceive outside members. The Pope has something much more important to do. He brings up Lazarus, and how he was involved in the attempt to assassinate the Pope, but Lazarus has been taking care of Sonya recently.
The public thinks that the Pope came out of that explosion with only a few minor injuries, but in reality, he nearly died. And he would have if he hadn't been brought to the Ruins. The technology within the lab is much further ahead than the outside world, so his life was saved using it. But the consequence is, he now has a dependent body. The Pope must come here once a year and be treated by the machinery, or he will die.
Luka understands that coming all the way down here would be costly, but Lazarus isn't the reason for his current condition. Pope admits that may be true, but he can't forgive whoever it was who tried to kill him. The reason he can't isn't because they tried to kill him, but because they used a time bomb. Not only could the Pope have been killed, but also many innocent people. Not only that, they used a timed bomb. If the Pope's daily routine changed even slightly, the attempt would have utterly failed and caused unnecessary damage. If they had used a pressure-activated bomb, it would have been a smaller explosion, and would have ensured the Pope would be there when the explosion occurred.
The fact that the Pope knows this much about how best to assassinate someone shocks both Luka and Sonya. The Pope realises he may have said too much, and apologises.
Luka and the Pope reach the end of the temple, and Luka notices a large capsule filled with liquid, but it contains what looks like a girl. The Pope tells Luka that the church calls her "Sleeping Beauty" and that even the churches most sophisticated equipment couldn't activate her. Promestein is amazed that she's an entirely mechanical organism and that no biological parts were used in her creation whatsoever.
The Pope mentions that she shouldn't be a concern, and starts repairing his body. Luka asks if he will be okay restoring his own body alone with such advanced technology, but the Pope replies it should be fine. Ilias mentions that despite him surviving the explosion, it should not have been possible. It brought him to the brink of death, and not even the most advanced medicines in the world should be able to heal him from that. The Pope tells them that he lost more than half of his body in the bombing. Out of shock, Luka accidentally puts his hand on the Sleeping Beauty's operation panel and unintentionally wakes up Brynhildr.
The Pope is amazed that Luka managed to wake her up only by touching the panel when not even the Pope's research team could after all this time.
She leaves her capsule and stands up. She says that she shouldn't have woken up as she is supposed only to wake up when the"world ends". Brynhildr thinks that Luka and the party are going to destroy the world, so she initiates combat mode, where they discover she has both Holy and Dark powers fused into her body. The Pope realises that she is going to attack them and prepares to assist them. Sonya reminds him that he can't fight. But the Pope initiates battle mode and transforms into Robo-Pope.
After the fight, Luka explains to Brynhildr that they don't want to destroy the world, they want to save it. Brynhildr tells them that she was created to save the world, but isn't sure who created her. She only refers to them as Master. Brynhildr becomes distressed because she doesn't know where Master is, but Luka suggests that she come with them, which she agrees to as her Master isn't with her anymore. Promestein then tries to remove her main memory unit, but Sonya confiscates her screwdriver.
The Pope is still surprised that Luka managed to wake her up, but Sonya is also surprised by the Pope's body. He reminds her that he lost over half of his body in the explosion. Anyone would have died from that, but the technology in the Ruins saved his life. In exchange for a part machine body. Hence why it must remain a secret.
San Ilia Castle two
Upon returning to the Castle, Luka explains what they did in the Tartarus and everything else they know. He believes Luka and asks if he can accompany them to help save the world, and joins the party automatically.
Luka is concerned if this will work. The King of San Ilia is leaving San Ilia to help a group of adventurers. He explains that it shouldn't be a problem, as he had planned for this particular situation. He requests the Knight Commander to fetch the 'stand in', who turns out to be an exact copy of the Pope. The robot part is concealed, and as long as people remain more than one metre away, it shouldn't be noticeable.
The Pope being replaced with a robot saddens Ilias.
He informs the party that there is a research lab within the castle, which they have permission to enter now.
Before the Pope can leave, the Knight Commander informs him of the Haunted Manor. The second suppression team sent there hasn't come back. Since they were some of their best soldiers, the Pope is worried by this. He asks Luka if they could go there themselves, and investigate it. Apparently, it's a home of many zombies, ghosts, and a mysterious necromancer.