Main Walkthrough

Early in Star Ocean The Second Story R you'll have the opportunity to recruit a young man named Ashton Anchors. Entirely luckless, Ashton more or less forces his way into the party, as they're somewhat responsible for his, er, bind. This puts you on a side quest to help Ashton solve his personal problems.

This guide will help you exorcise Ashton in Star Ocean The Second Story R. It's one of the longer side quests in the game, though you can get it done pretty early on.

Step 1: Recruit Ashton

Before we get to the side quest we might as well go over recruiting Ashton. Your first step is to complete the events in Marze, up to and including the battles in the Forest of Symbols. After that you'll be headed east to the port town of Harley.

In Harley you'll see two men right by the entrance. Speak to them to learn about a two-headed dragon that is causing trouble in the Salva Mines. You'll need to access The Dragon's Lair in the Salva Mines to deal with the problem, during which time you'll catch sight of Ashton, who is also trying to deal with the dragon. This guide will take you through The Dragon's Lair, though if you want to fasttrack the trip:
  • Enter the mines
  • Head to the central area with the Unique Spot
  • Travel northwest to find The Dragon's Lair
  • Head north until you find a large, open area that branches out in multiple directions
  • Go southwest until you find a Save Point
  • Head south to the end of the cavern
Past the Save Point you'll find Ashton fighting the dragon, which then promptly latches itself to his back. He demands the team take responsibility for this, and if you agree - or if you fail to escape Ashton after turning him down - he'll join the party. Note that this prevents you from recruiting Opera or Ernest for the remainder of the playthrough.

Step 2: Marze

Ashton needs a method for exorcising the dragons, and his best bet is a place of learning. Head to Marze and check out the Elder's Home, north of the western entrance. In the bedroom on the right side of the house you'll find two bookshelves. Inspect the lower bookshelf - note that you can't do this during a Private Action - and you'll find a book called 'On Exorcism'. It reveals a method for parting invasive creatures from human bodies.

Step 3: Krosse Castle

Your next destination is the Mountain Palace, north of Krosse, but you need permission to enter first. Head to Krosse Castle, chat with the receptionist to get an audience with the king, then speak to the king. He'll grant you access to the Mountain Palace, as well as a purse of 3,000 FOL.

(I don't think you need to check the Mountain Palace before doing this step, but if the king doesn't respond to the request, then try entering the Mountain Palace and speaking to the guard first.)

Step 4: Mountain Palace

Once you're inside the Mountain Palace you'll need to take a particular westbound path to reach your destination. This guide will lead you through the Mountain Palace - though, again, if you want a quick summary:
  • Head northwest from the entrance
  • Travel directly north at the next junction
  • Take a quick right, then head north again
  • Save at the next Save Point
  • Battle the Nightmare in the next room to the north
Defeating the Nightmare will allow you to claim the Silver Chalice, a vital component in the exorcism.

Step 5: Lasgus Mountains

Next up is the Lasgus Mountains, a rocky location to the southwest of Krosse City. This is a relatively short dungeon, though you may want some help getting to the top. If not, take the northwestern path from the entrance, then take a left to climb to the top of the mountain. Just beyond a Save Point you'll find a huge bird's nest, and approaching it will put you in a battle with Zinae, the master of the mountain range.

Defeating Zinae will earn you the King's Tears. You're almost done.

Step 6: The Dragon's Lair

The final step in this quest is returning to the chamber in The Dragon's Lair where you first recruited Ashton. You can either walk all the way back, through the Salva Mines, or just Fast Travel to The Deep Lair point. (I recommend Fast Travelling). You'll trigger a cut scene when you reenter the chamber, and Ashton, somewhat unsurprisingly, will remain as he is. Everyone's bond with the luckless swordsman deepens, and your journey continues.