WARNING! CAUTION! AVISO!
This post contains spoilers for both Professor Layton games. Of course, if you’re the type who actually cares about having Layton games spoiled you are almost assuredly playing them for the wrong reason. And if you played the games without guessing the spoiled bits on your own you’re probably not smart enough to solve the puzzles and come by them legitimately. You have been warned. (And possibly insulted.)
This lovable scamp is Flora. She’s one of the key plot elements in Professor Layton and the Curious Village. One thing leads to another and, at the end of the game, Flora leaves her Curious Village behind to travel the world with the professor. In fact, it’s strongly implied that the entire setting of the game was designed as a puzzle box to determine whether or not Layton was worthy to be her caretaker, a task to which he rose admirably.
Now, Flora doesn’t get a lot of characterization in Curious Village outside of being adorable and possibly made of porcelain. It was interesting to speculate how she might change over the course of the inevitable subsequent Layton games. This wasn’t the reason I purchased Professor Layton and the Diabolical Box, of course, but I figured it’d be a nice bonus. But when I fired up the game Flora was nowhere to be seen.
Of course I knew Flora was still in the game; her face is used as one of the save slot icons. (Peanut said she picked the third slot because it was pink and also a girl. I picked the first slot because it had a top hat.) This indeed turned out to be the case, and Flora popped up in the first chapter of the game to tag along with Layton and Luke, exactly as I hoped she would. When asked why she was following them, she replied “I just didn’t want to be all alone again.”
So: Layton, Luke and Flora reunited. Happy ending, right?
Well, no. No, because this is the most disturbing thing ever. What I want to know is, where the hell was Flora between the end of Curious Village and the point in Diabolical Box where it’s clear she’s following the professor? Why wasn’t she with them during the outset of the second game? Did he just dump her off on the side of the road somewhere? Perhaps she got separated from them after wandering off in a mall or amusement park. Neither case paints a very reassuring picture of Layton-as-caretaker.
“Professor! I just saw a hooded man club Flora over the head and drag her off into that dark alley!”
“Hmm… yes, that certainly seems to be the case. That reminds me of a puzzle…”
(Please note: both Layton games are still awesome and you’re not supposed to think this hard about their charming but completely ridiculous storylines. Now stack these cups, rearrange these matchsticks and don’t worry your pretty little head about what may or may not be happening to Flora while she’s offscreen.)