Blazing Buffaloes (09/04/2014)

An absolutely titillataruing morning to you, straight from Konana of Windurst's Tarutaru Times!
How've your adventures been treating you?

I know, I know, I'm a bit more sprightaruly than usual, but that's neither here nor there.

We're in trouble-wouble and I need everyone's help!

It's those darned fluffball moogle-woogles!
With all those notches in your beltaru, you've surely stumbled across their Buffalo Bonanza Ranch.

You know, the one where they keep all the buffaloes they catch-watch up north?
They usually rentaru them out for all manner of festivals, rodeos, and what-have-you, and recently they've been expanding to other animals. On the surface, they seem to be expanding and all looks hunky-dory, but if they were any more in the red-wed I'd need to call a white mage to wipe up the mess.

Isn't that positively scandalous-wandalous?

So we decided to send-wend in some of our top reporters to do an undercover investigation. With the Blazing Buffaloes eventaru set to get started in a few short winks, I feel it's the perfect time to expose the operation for the shame it is!

If that doesn't whetaru your appetite for the truth, I don't know what will!

Gentle Ox was a freelance writer who was ordinarily on the beat in Bastok, but this summer was dispatched to the Tarutaru Times. Instead of wishing him luck and happiness before his departure, all of his colleagues wrung their hands, softly whispering, "our condolences." Gentle Ox had no idea why he was chosen for this most vexing of assignments.

When he reported for duty, he was provided with a desk and chair of standard Tarutaru size.
Although the taut wooden bars imprinted themselves in his ample bottom, he never once complained and got down to writing his articles.

Ox was always the first one to arrive at the office. It was the start of another ordinary work day until he noticed a chill cup of milk sitting on his desk. Glancing to the left of the coaster, he spied a note which read, "Thanks for all the good work you've done." Without giving it a second thought, he gulped the beverage down. Although it was autumn, the sun was blazing that day and the chilled beverage was a welcome surprise.

Suddenly, Ox felt a strange sensation shoot through his body.
His large frame began shrinking and morphing, bones cracking and skin compressing...and in the blink of an eye, he was transformed into a chigoe.

"Wh...who would do this!?" He said, frantically hopping about on top of his desk in his tiny new form.

"You sure make-wake a fine chigoe, Ox."
"Ch... Chief?!"
Peering at him from the top of Ox's chair was Naiko-Paneiko, the Editor-in-chief of the Magic Paradise Weekly. "That milk-wilk you drank was 'miracle milk'," he said.
"Miracle... what?"
"Its effects will last-wast for one day."
"O-one day!? You mean I'm gonna look like this all day!?"
"I did this for a reason-weason. There's a little task which I require of you."
"You can't be serious?"
"Now, now, you're the one who happily slurp-wurped down the milk."
"B-but I didn't--!"
"It's only appropriate that one who received a gift pay in kind."
"You weren't thanking me for what I'd done...but what you were going to make me do!?"

Gentle Ox finally understood why his colleagues offered their condolences before he left.

"I wantaru you to go over to the Buffalo Bonanza Ranch and see if anything fishy-wishy is going on."

The moogles run the Buffalo Bonanza Ranch, where they have their hand in caring for both buffalo and all manner of other beasts. To hear Vana'diel's housewives tell it, business isn't going so hot despite their rapid expansion.

"And you want me to conduct an in-depth interview by perching myself on a buffalo's behind while getting swatted at!?"
"Oh, stop being so melodramataruic. The moogles won't even notice you--the perfectaru cover!"

Though we was a tad flustered, Gentle Ox, ever the earnest one, accepted the prepayment and set out for the Buffalo Bonanza Ranch.

--Who would have thought that being a chigoe meant you had to burrow yourself deep in buffalo hair?

Ox, nestling himself within the back of a relatively agreeable specimen, thought about life often twisted and turned more than the back alleys behind the metalworks. The hairs blocked out the sky, like a brown follicle canopy.

He waited until nightfall to make his move. The buffaloes began to wamble slowly toward the barn, beckoned by the clanging of the moogles' bells. Ox's buffalo entered the barn just as the sky turned dark. The Fauna Feeders came and cared for the buffaloes, feeding and grooming them as they chatted with one another.
It was only a matter of time before they began to talk about the ranch.

Their musings began with the mundane-whether they could sell staples other than buffalo milk, whether prices should be raised, and other standard business fare.

No wonder they're all so worried about sales. After all...

Ox was so focused on listening to their conversation that he didn't notice that the buffalo he was on was getting brushed. Before he could react, he found himself choking as a wave of water flushed him off the buffalo's back. Something hard slammed into him and he felt the water carry him away...


"See? I was rightaru to send in a strong Galka like yourself."
Ox, his whole body now covered in bandages, could only frown at the Editor-in-chief's words.
"Are you mad!? My bones were about to shatter and my skin feels like it was raked over jagged ice! Not to mention the enormous embarrassment at the end..."

The Fauna Feeders' brushing forced Ox out of the buffalo's hair and flung him to the floor like a pebble kicked down the road. As he lay there unconscious, he morphed back into his original form. The moogles treated his wounds and bandaged him up before they politely asked him to leave.

"I honestly-wonestly didn't think you'd make it after seeing you in all of those red bandages-which I can only hope were their natural color."
"I'd better get a raise after all this."
"I'll...think-wink about it," the Editor-in-chief said uneasily.
"Their secret is in this sash," said the Galka as he held the end of the red bandage between his fingers.
"It's probably leftover material from something they're working on."
"Hmm...a red sash... I think this deserves further-wurther investigation," said Naiko-Paneiko.

"Who would've thoughtaru that harmless chigoes would cause their milk-wilk production to plummet?"
"Yes, they go through an awful lot of trouble to get rid of them when they bring them from the north."
But they can't catch them all, especially ones that are burrowed deep into the buffalo's hair.

Yes, are they indeed harmless? Chigoe bites stress the poor buffaloes, hampering their milk production. It therefore stands to reason that they are the direct cause of the Buffalo Bonanza Ranch's economic misfortune, and why the moogles hunted and pecked at every last strand of hair in their search for those pesky insects.
"Surely you understand why a chigoe was the worst form I could possibly have taken."
"I had no idea... I owe you an apology-wology."
"Well, it could have been worse. The important part is that I made a discovery."
"The moogles have come up with a new plan. They said the time for mimicking is nigh!"
"They've chosen to take cues from how others treat their livestock; figure out what makes them tick. The best ways to make them content, which buttons not to push...
"Wait, are you saying-waying...?"
"Ranches are all the rage across the wide, open seas, so they're going over there to pick up a few pointers. I'm sure we'll see the results of their overseas spying soon!"

Bruised and battered though he was, Ox did succeed in picking up a small scoop.

Story: Miyabi Hasegawa
Illustration: Mitsuhiro Arita

Event Schedule

Blazing Buffaloes will come a-chargin' on Wednesday, September 10 at 8:00 PM (PDT) , and mosey off into the night on Wednesday, September 24 at 11:00 PM.

How to Participate

During the event, herds of wild buffalo will be released into the areas listed below. Observe their patterns of behavior and skillfully lead them to the moogles stationed in the vicinity, where rich rewards await you! For detailed instructions, simply speak to the moogles at the following locations:

West Ronafaure (I-6) / East Ronfaure (G-6)/ North Gustaberg (L-8) / South Gustaberg (L-8) / West Sarutabaruta (J-8) / East Sarutabaruta (G-11)

Receiving Rewards

A moogle will reward you with a bovine brand card for every buffalo you wrangle in. These cards are exchangable for any of the following items:
Miracle Milk / Drover's Mantle / Red Sash / Drover's Belt / Dash Sash / Aldebaran Horn

* The red sash and dash sash items available in the 2005 Blazing Buffaloes event have been added to this year's spoils.


- While participating in Blazing Buffaloes, adventurers will be unable to attack or be attacked by monsters.
- This restriction will wear off upon logging out or changing areas.