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-get Rika caught up and probably clear level 10 or so in Passageway using death abilities on Meta Slugs, otherwise Juza has quite a bit of risk -post-Zio / pre-Spaceport is a great time to grind since you have three powerful characters so they split the exp less - as a bonus, endgame Hahn, Gryz and Demi benefit from any grinding done from here on out... so take Rune into Nurvus and whip out Gigra repeatedly, rest for free somewhere, repeat until everyone’s 25ish or whatever you like.
The side quests will take a load off the grinding. In my current game, I just got through the sandworm quest, and Rika is level 12 with everyone else. Get the best equipment you can buy in Aeido first. The best place to get money, and maybe even some extra levels is in the later half of the Wreckage dungeon near Nalya. You want lots of battles with either 4 Warren286's, or any battle you can get with a Tracer(usually ~500 meseta per battle, 3 Tracers will produce 800). There's also a Ceramic Armor in a chest, which is typically what you're building up money for in the first place, to equip 4/5 of your characters with one.
As for the 2nd bit, the fissure side quest with the slug boss will most likely net 2 or 3 levels, and is available before you can leave Motavia. You're probably level 18 or 19 average at that point, so you'll jump to between 20 and 22.
You can sell the other equipment. It's why I bother picking up Moon Dews in the first place, 2500 Meseta a piece. Sol Dews are way greater, and Star Dews should hopefully keep you from needing those. Remember to buy them in the 2nd item shop in Meese(which opens up after Garuberk, as does Reshel's armor shop, which sells expensive Laconian gear) just before entering the final dungeon.
Speaking of Seth, I had no idea you could take him anywhere other than through the area where you find him. For example, go do a side quest or guild mission. I have no idea how useful he is, but it's nice to be able to get some use out of him.
Our kitty has left to be with the Lord. RIP Rascal, March 12, 2016. We miss you dearly...