/q/ - Quest


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"- but where did the Crystal Heart come from exactly? There are many who claim it to be divine in nature, a gift to crystal ponykind from the being popularly referred to as 'The Goddess'. But if this were truly the case, why is it that only such a tiny part of the empire is protected by it? Not all are fortunate enough to live within its area of influence."
- Excerpt from 'Brief History of the Crystal Empire, v3'

All of you have arrived in the village of Winterheim; a rather small village in the Northeastern part of the crystal empire. A small river runs down the hill the town was built on… but from what you can gather, this river will only increase in volume as summer rolls around and melts some of the ice higher up in the mountains surrounding it. For now however, it remains humble and small, providing the village little aside from a source of fresh water.

Like the river, Winterheim is humble and small. A former mining town until a few years ago, it has now shrunk considerably as the mines that supported it were abandoned years ago. Clear signs of battle can be seen all around you. Several buildings burned down… stains of blood on that wall… A shop sign lying discarded on the road reading 'Cassie's Shop', the lower part of the sign scorched by fire, making the lower part of the sign unreadable.

Well… the mayor is looking for ponies with battle and/or diplomatic experience. Some of the townsfolk seem to have gathered with her in the local inn for protection, in case another attack comes.


Make sure I look proper then enter the inn graciously.
Say the usual pleasantries and greetings to everypony, but look for the mayor.


Ah, the local inn.
Time for some refreshments and pleasant company.
Walk in and order a beer.


Never be it said we cowered in front of challange, or shyed away from acts of good.
To the inn, the mayor will need us!


The ponies in here seem somewhat distressed… an understandable reaction to what happened.
The mayor is talking to a stallion near the bar. You easily recognize her as the pony wearing more expensive clothing.

The barkeep swiftly hoofs you a mug of beer before moving on to the next customer. At least someone seems to be making profit out of this!

It's pretty crowded in here, seems like most of the town is seeking shelter.


Clear my throat and say in my sweetest and clearest voice.
"We seek the mayor."


Take my beer and overlook the tavern.
Many ponies inside? What kind?


Several ponies turn to look at you and point at a mare wearing nice clothing over at the bar. She's speaking to a stallion and looks somewhat tired.

The beer is quite foamy and looks pretty good.
You only see crystal ponies in here… oh wait no, there's a pegasus stallion standing over there as well. And a unicorn mare near the back! Even this far into the sticks, cultural enrichment cannot be stopped!


I'm going to sit back for a second and observe.


Off to the lady!
Cut in the middle of her speech!
"Might we introduce ourselves, our name is Sonnet Gloury, paladin and herald of Her love."
Look at the mayor for a second, as if expecting something.


You sit back and enjoy your mug of beer. Tastes like… cherry? How odd.

The mayor looks annoyed at you, but only for a second until she hears you're a paladin.
"Oh thank goodness, a paladin! You are a godsend, my dear! Please, we are in dire need of your help!"


Well, I do not wish to cause a scene.

Make myself noticable, but stand patiently until the mayor is ready to talk.


Seems like another crystal mare decided not to wait.


How improper.


"Of course, we shall see the land and conquer the threat, be it by iron, by magic or by word!
The Lover's embrace shall give you comfort!"


Very. The mayor doesn't seem to mind though. She seems quite happy even.

"Good, good! Now, our humble little town was attacked yesterday by a band of brutes. They killed several of our guards, stole equipment from some of our shops and burned down what they couldn't take. They even kidnapped some ponies!"


"Kindnapping? That doesn't sound so bad!"


Really now.
Go a bit closer to where the mayor is.


Well then.
Gently, innocently, and not intrusively cough to let my presence be known to her.
I want her to notice me first.


"They took my daughter!"
She takes a deep breath and slows down a little.
"Fletcher, Edelweiss, Cassie… I don't know how Winterheim could possibly survive without them. They're all craftsponies that help us stay afloat…"

She's too engrossed in talking to Sonnet to notice either of you.


Well I wouldn't want to interrupt them. So keep listening.


"This will not stand!
Fear not, we will seek these brutes and bring them towards the light!
Point us to them, and we shall bring vengance!"


I step in.
"Don't worry, miss mayor. I offer you my assurance that your daughter and your craftsponies will be returned here safely."
Grab her hoof.
"Or my name isn't Gotti."
Kiss her hoof.


Look at him.
"We see you are a fellow seeker of Her love!
Let's join forces!"


Turn to her.
"Oh yes, I am a seeker of Love. Might I ask your name as well?"


"We are Paladin of Her Might, Sonnet Glory."
Stand tall and proud, facing him.


I smile at that.
"If I may chip in, I am the follower of the Lover myself.
Before we get ahead of ourselves, I am Angelite, and I believe I might be able to help this cause as well."


"One of my ponies stealthily followed them."
She points at a pegasus in the crowd.
"They entered one of the old mines further up the hill. I'm… guessing that's where they might have a camp or something. Or at least, that's what I hope. I don't know what they're trying to achieve in there, those veins are completely depleted."

The mayor looks a little surprised.
"Thank… you?"


"Such a pleasure to make your acquaintance."

"And another lovely follower of Love? I must be truly blessed by Her to find myself here."

Act like it's the most normal thing in the world.
"Miss mayor, your daughter is as good as saved already!"


Smile at the compliment.
"It has been the silk carpet of fate that she created that brought us all here, for a purpose."


Nod strongly.
"We can use all the ponies we can get."
"It is but a dead end for them!
As the great strategists of our past tell us, book of Waxing, chapter first, there is no end like a dead end.
It's clear the meaning of this!"
Spout all that with a look of self-assurance on my face.
"Fellow Lovers, we should make our way! Time is of the essence!"


"Thank you… just… thank you so much. I… we don't have much to offer in the way of reward, but perhaps I can request a reward from our liege for your service to the Empire."


"Such talk comes later. First we must save those innocents! "


I shake my head.
"That will not be needed. I do not do this for such material rewards. I do it because it is our duty as ponies to help each other the best we can."


"They entered mineshaft A3. It's just uphill, about half an hour on hoof. Be careful, the road can be slippery when it's freezing like this…"

"That's very noble of you, but I cannot let you do this without some sort of reward."


"We do not do this for mundane pleasures."
Fellow Lovers, let's go!"

To the mines!


"The reward will be the happines that completing this task will give."

Off we go!


And off I go.
I'll be the rear guard.
So I can keep watch of those rears.


Rolling for Gottis opinion on
Angelite's butt '1d10'
Sonnets butt '1d10'

Roll #1 4 = 4 / Roll #2 9 = 9


The three of you leave the warmth and safety of the inn behind and head outside again. It is snowing ever so slightly and there is a soft breeze blowing through the street.
You exit the village and start walking uphill. Soon enough you start passing by some entrances.
A3! That's the one!
Like a gaping wound in the landscape, the entrance to the mine lies in front of you. You do not hear any noise or see any light coming from the inside, which doesn't really tell you anything.

Paladinbutt is best butt. Tightly packed in those clothes… Mmmm~


Reminds me of a yellow crystal pallibutt I once met on my travels.
Such a shy little pony…

Time to light a torch and throw it in to see how deep it goes '1d10'

Roll #1 5 = 5


"How dreary."


Step forth into the darkness, staring the black cloth itself right in the eyes.
Gaze the darkness away!

Roll #1 7 = 7


You enter the mine. It's less cold in here, as you are protected from the wind. You come across discarded pickaxes, lanterns, shovels and all kinds of old equipment as you follow the railroad deep into the belly of the world.

It's not very effective… luckily for you, Gotti lights a torch and banishes the cold darkness through the power of fire.


Witchcraft should be banned!
Deeper into the mines we go.

Roll #1 8 = 8


Spot for tracks or clues that could lead us to the kidnappers '1d10+2'

Roll #1 2 + 2 = 4


Follow, and mind my step.
"Shall I propose that we try persuation at first, should we encounter these ponies?"


"What do you mean?
Are we not going there to enlighten them about the world of the Lover?"


"If they give us the option, these types are usually not that open to diplomatic channels."


I smile.
"I can be very persuasive."

"We shall first disarm any volitale situations, should they arise. They will better listen to those words once pacified."


You wander the abandoned shaft, going deeper and deeper…
Eventually, you spot some light ahead. It is advisable to kill your own light if you intent on approaching stealthily.

It's hard to miss some of the fresh hoofprints in the dusty underground you find yourself in. Someone definitely came through here recently.


I smile back.
"I see. But be careful nonetheless."

"There are some tracks here…"
Follow them and extinguish my torch if necessary.


Stop them.
"We have arrived!"


"Of course."

"I see.
Let me try to talk with them then. I assure you, I will be as careful as possible, but be so dear and be ready should they not find negotiations as an acceptable option."

Walk towards the light!


"By all means.
Share Her Love.
I will assist you if need be!"


You turn a corner and come face to face with another long hallway, except this one is well-lit.
Just up ahead, a mare and a stallion sit by a fire. The mare is kicking back and snoring loudly while the stallion is poking the fire with a stick with a bored expression on his face.
He gasps as he spots you and quickly kicks the mare awake
"Wake the fuck up! Intruders! I'll warn the boss, you hold them off!"
And with that the stallion runs off deeper into the mines, leaving the confused mare behind.

"Hey what? Who the hell are you!? What are you doing on our turf!?"


Stand by Angelite's side.


Smile at her.
"Do not be alarmed. I came here to negotiate so everypony can be happy when this day ends. I wish you no harm, and if you will allow me, I would like to talk to your leader."
Smooth Talker

Roll #1 8 + 2 = 10


I go walk next to her.


She looks a little taken aback but relaxes somewhat as you reassure her.
"Y-Yeah you just stay over there and he'll be on his way!"

"Hey! Stop! Keep your distance!"
She draws her sword.


"Relax, I'll stay right here. See, nothing wrong."


"It is quite allright, Miss.
No need to be alarmed.
Oh, where are my manners, I do believe I should introduce ourselves first. These are my companions Gotti and Sonnet Glory, and I myself am Angelite."


"Charming to meet you, miss?…
Look towards the bandit mare.


She takes a few steps back anyway.
"I'm telling you to keep your distance!"

"Yeah, that's real nice but-"
You hear heavy hoofsteps coming from further in the cave. A pony covered in what seems like a impossibly heavy layer of armor is stomping your way. The mare perks up and runs over to said pony, standing besides it.
"Keep your distance, ok!? This thing is can fuck you up without pause!"


"I'll stay right here. Don't worry."


"Now, as I said to your associate, no need to be hostile. We are merely here to negotiate."


"You better!"

The mare frowns at you and glances at the 'pony' standing next to her.
"This right here is a golem, it's here to keep nosy little ponies like you away. Now stay put until the boss gets here!"


"I see.
Still, you used some words I'd prefer would not surface again during the coming conversations. I am quite sure you do understand. I am merely trying to keep this as civil as possible."


"Look, I am unarmed, my mace is safely sheated and at the first sight of trouble, of me setting even a single step forward, you could easily cut me down. There is really no danger for you. I'd be mad to try to get in your way."


"I'm just doing what I was told to, alright? Shut up! Shut up! Shut up!"
She's very twitchy.

The stallion from earlier returns, a few other ponies at his side. One of them, a crystal stallion, steps forward.
"Why are you here? Leave now, while we still let you. This operation is of no concern to any of you."


"I'm afraid we cannot leave. You seem like an intelligent stallion, so I am sure you can listen to reason. I am merely a diplomat, and I can assure you I am here to represent the benefit of everypony involved."
Smooth Talker

Roll #1 1 + 2 = 3


He glowers at all of you for a moment before turning around.
"Kill them. Especially that idiot mare."
In a flash, he disappears. Leaving the party facing down the group of ponies and golem on their own.
The mare spits on the ground and bites down on her sword again.
"Shoul'ev weft vhen you had de chance!"



The group of ponies standing in front of the party draw their weapons and take a collective step forward menacingly.
You are now facing 5 bandits (all crystal ponies) and a pony golem in the long mineshaft you are standing in.


After being conscripted by the mayor of Winterheim like the rest of the group, she sent you on your way as well, towards where the party went. A small climb uphill and a few near slip-ups later, you arrive at the correct mine entrance and advance inside. After a short walk, you notice light and noise coming from up ahead.


"It is you who should have left when you had the chance! Surrender or you'll taste my mace!"


"A regretful turn of events.
I implore you to reconsider. You do not want to do this. You could be so much more, so much better than simple ruffians!"
Good Word on them.
And look at the mare. She knows I'm right.

Roll #1 10 = 10


I wouldnt have taken this job if I do not need the money, the cost coming up here with guards and protection is tremendous but is worth it I think.

Anyway lets peep from the corner and see whats happening. What do I see?

Roll #1 1 = 1


"There's six of us and three of you! You're toast, zebra!"

They all share some uneasy glances with each other until finally the stallion who ran away earlier spits out the dagger he's wielding.
"She's right, how come we always get to do the dirty work? The boss always keeps his hooves clean while we get to shovel shit!"
Another stallion just shrugs.
"Well, isn't that how it works? He's the boss after all…"
The mare from earlier spits out her sword again as well.
"Doesn't mean we have to do all the work while he gets to laze off!"
"That's precious coming from you, miss nap-a-lot!"
"I've got vitamin deficiency, you insensitive fuck, I need lots of rest so I don't fall over and die!"
"Sounds like a load of crappy excuses to me."
"Guys! We're losing sight of the important thing here! Why should we be content with just following? We're better than that!"
"What, are you going to lead us instead?"
"… I could!"
"That's it, I'm done. Fuck all this."
"Yeah, I want to go back to Crystopolis where it's nice and warm."

You trip over a rock and fall facefirst into a mound of dirt. That's going to leave a nice aftertaste.


Ugghhh…. shake my head and look around. Search for the source of the noise and peek whats happening.

Roll #1 8 = 8


I nod, and stand aside.
"Yes, you should definitely think things over. About where you are now and where you want your lives to be in the next few years. Just spare some time for yourselves. And remember, crime never pays in the long run. I'm delighted that this could end without violence."


A group of ponies are arguing with each other up ahead.

They all seem to nod in agreement. At least they can agree on that part.
"I'm outta here. To hell with this."
"Hey, wait on me!"
The group idly walks past you, intent on leaving this place without causing any of you any more trouble.
… The golem pony remains in place though, standing perfectly still and ready to stop you from advancing any further.


Well now, lot's going on.
Be to the store for a minute.


Whelp, are they friendly? Do I recognize any of them?


Roll #1 3 = 3


They are all walking out, ignoring you completely as they pass by you.
Two crystal ponies and a zebra remain ahead, facing what looks like a extremely heavily armored pony.


I glance at it, then at the others.
"I'm afraid persuading that golem is not something I am capable of."


Approach them.
"So I take it you are the ponies who I will rendezvous with. Anything I should know before we go about whatever it is we need to do." I watch my hoof looking if its clean while I talk.


I also direct this question to those leaving.


I smile.
"Ah, yes, every bit of help is much appreciated. My name is Angelite, and these are Gotti and Sonnet Glory. I managed to convince some of the ponies here not to resort to violence and give up their lives as criminals, but we've yet to get to their boss. I shall try and do my best to negotiate with said leader as well, alas, we have a slight problem at hoof, as this golem-"
Point at the armory-pony.
"-seems to be in the way of our progress, and I'm afraid it cannot be reasoned with."


"We don't work here anymore!"
"Yeah that's right! Tell her!"
They just move on and take their leave.


"Then we shall let our steel talk!"
Draw my mace and Sentried Slam to the Golem.


I give an unconcerned look and put my hoof down.
"Criminals you say, as expected for them to live in such a place, a cave to be specific pfff."

"Alright be off with you people now, shoo shoo." I wave my hoof dismissively.

Stand back weighing my options.
"Oh dear."


You charge and slam into the steadfast monstrosity with fervor. While it doesn't move, you did manage to make a dent in it.
… Come to think of it, it already has some dents in it. Strange.
It gets ready to charge at you.


"They couldn't know any better, the poor lost souls."

"Stand fast, my associates, let us get rid of this golem so we can help the ponies we promised!"

Roll #1 2 = 2


No it won't.
Bash it with my mace '1d10'

Roll #1 3 = 3


"Eeehhh.. really? Why now.. uughhh." I stand back and pull something out of my hat and throw it at the golem.
Hopefully a bomb of some sort that is.
Hat trick.

Roll #1 2 + 2 = 4


Despite your best efforts to do something, the narrow hallway makes it hard to dodge out of the way as the golem barrels through you with surprising speed. That thing hits hard!

Angelite 2/5
Gotti 3/5
Helaine 4/5


Rub my snout.
"You are a worthy foe! I will enjoy this!"


Keep it at distance with my walking stick.

Roll #1 2 = 2


Slam '1d10'

Roll #1 6 = 6


I fix myself up as I look at the zebra.
"Why does he have to agitate it Ugghh."
Magic bolt.

Roll #1 3 = 3


"I'm afraid we had no other choice!"


Walking sticks are very elegant and fancy and can even serve as a decent weapon in some cases. Against a golem however, it does not fare too well.
The golem smashes into you again, sending you sprawling over the ground. You are helpless.

In retaliation, you hit the golem with a strong slam of your own from behind. It stumbles for a moment before righting itself again.

You try to launch your magic bolt at it but miss. Luckily for you, it's distracted by Gotti's strike so it doesn't charge for you.

Angelite HELPLESS: 4 wounds
Gotti 3/5
Helaine 4/5


Another bash with my mace. '1d10'

Roll #1 8 = 8


"Oh dear…"
Stand up!

Roll #1 5 = 5


"Gaaahh! Get away at us you lousy piece of machine!" I stuff my hoof on my hat and throw something at the golems head.
Lets hope its a grenade.

Hat trick.

Roll #1 6 + 2 = 8


You bring down your heavy steel mace onto the heavily armored golem, creating the biggest dent into it yet! Oh right, maces are designed to counter armor! No wonder that was so effective!

You can't quite muster the strength to get back up!

You pull out a very old-timey grenade out of the hat. The fuse is already even lit on fire! You quickly lob the gunpowder charge at the golem and it erupts in a rather small explosion, dealing some damage to it.

Some small rocks and gravel fall from the ceiling of the cavern and bounces off the golem pony with loud clangs. Hmmm…


Perhaps I can bury the golem under dirt.
Buck the walls '1d10'

Roll #1 8 = 8


I shan't lay on the ground while they do all the work!

Roll #1 3 = 3


Run up to angelite and teleport her to safety!

Roll #1 1 = 1


Holy be Her Most Pure Teats!
We are in dismay!
Quick, Heal Angelite!

Roll #1 3 + 2 = 5


You buck the walls and cause more gravel to fall down from the ceiling. A large rock comes loose as well and falls down onto the golem's head, tearing off a part of it.
That caused some pain.

Hey, you dispatched 5 ponies already, that's a nice contribution, isn't it? You decide to just rest for a while longer.

You run up to the helpless Angelite and try your teleportation spell… '1d10'

Roll #1 5 = 5


And manage to teleport both yours and Angelite's legs into the dirt ground. You are both stuck as a duck.

It's not very effective.


Whhaaa? What?
"That incompetent mentor of mine!" I grit my teeth and try to pull off my legs off the ground.

Roll #1 10 = 10


Time for plan B!
And in B, I mean
"By her Smothering Hooves, Be Embraced!"
Empower weapons, strike against the golem!
Stand in front of the helpless Helaine and Angelite!

Roll #1 10 + 3 = 13


"Oh gracious… I am sorry for this…"
Okay, this is as ungraceful as it gets, get to my hooves now.

Roll #1 7 = 7


And a true troubadour knows when to stand back and let the ladies handle this.


The dirt is pretty loose and you easily free yourself from it with little to no effort.

You fill your armored hooves with the fury of a thousand suns and launch yourself at the damaged golem, crushing the hulking mechanism with untold power in a matter of seconds.

The golem has been destroyed.

You free yourself with some struggling and get back to your hooves.


Who else is left?
Now, cure the wounds on my friends, the worst one off!

Roll #1 9 + 2 = 11


Pffff show off. I frown a bit.
…. and a potential rival for my shows!!
"Greaaatt, at least you cleaned up that mess you made." I spout.

Dust myself off and kick the golem.
"Dumb machine."


"I am in awe of your fighting prowess, miss Sonnet. Perhaps we could spar together sometime?"


Dust myself off.
"I apologize for my earlier performance. I am afraid I'm not very good at combat."

"Please, there is no reason to be upset."


"We did the one right thing."
Nod slowly.
"When these bandits will have shared in Her Love!"


You are alone for now. Angelite convinced the other bandits to leave.

Yeah, stupid magiteck!


"Let's try to track their leader."
Look for the leader stallions tracks '1d10+2'

Roll #1 4 + 2 = 6


"Now, we shall find the victims of this kindnapping!"


Hmmmpphh.. I will be a better magician one day.

I just raise my head up and put my hat on.
"Now that thing is down, perhaps we can now move on."


"Forward, to victory!"


"Excuse me miss, we have not been introduced yet. My name is Gotti, traveler from far to the South. What's your name?"


I nod.
"Why yes, we should.
And again, I only as that I try to negotiate once more before we resort to violence… maybe that so called 'boss' will be more accepting this time."


Lots of tracks in this hallway, hard tell which are who's. You also seem to recall him disappearing in a flash, not walking away.
There's only one way to go though. Deeper into the mines. At least it's lit up this time! There's no random junk lying around either.

Finally, you spot two doors opposite of each other up ahead, one to the left, the other to the right. The cave continues on beyond them.


Can I discover any clues about the right way from the doors or immediate environment? '1d10+2'

Roll #1 4 + 2 = 6


"Can you tell us which way is right, Mr. Gotti?"


"Yes lets."

Walk by next to him pull out my hat and grab my card to give him but dont look at him.
"I am the marveous Helaine, remember that Gotti the trouble rouser."


I should clarify, the cave continues on straight ahead. The doors are closed and you don't know what's behind them.


I let the matter be taken into their own hands.


"I dare say, I think it is this way."
Go look in the left door.

"Trouble rouser? Have I wronged you in some way?'


Stare at my companions, tapping on the door with one of my armored hooves.
"Should we?"


"We should try and knock first."


"Yes, knocking we meant!"


"Lets just say that fight earlier can be handled more professionally but it doesnt matter now does it?" I continue to follow him.

"Is it locked?" I call to them.


It's a pretty shitty lock though. You could easily break through it.


Buck through it '1d10'

Roll #1 6 = 6


"We shall then!"
Knock on the right door!

"I do not know yet."


Well then..

Roll #1 1 + 2 = 3


You turn around and deliver a solid buck against the door, smashing the lock and opening the door rather forcibly.
Beyond it lies a small room filled with sacks, bottles and barrels.

Nothing but silence for a moment before you hear the voice of a unknown stallion answer.
"… Yes?"

Pat pat.
Huh, what a strange door… oh wait no, that's Gotti's butt.


I just huff.

"Well we shall know now."


Butts are not for knocking!
Look into the room, anything that jumps to my eyes?

Roll #1 3 = 3


Give Sonnet a costanza look.

Look through the barrels and sacks.
Anything interesting? '1d10+2'
Cigars maybe?

Roll #1 8 + 2 = 10


Shake my head and move on the lead, taking a guarding position.


"Bottles?!" I exclaimed and check them out.
Are they wine? If so how old?

Roll #1 10 = 10


"Hello, sir, may I come in?"


Nope, just boring old sacks and barrels. Nothing shiny or anything.

This appears to be a food larder! The sacks and barrels contain a variety of fresh food like crystal berries, bread, carrots, pastries and so on. There's also bottles of expensive wine and small kegs filled with beer and milk, but no cigars. Those do not belong in a food larder after all.

Oh this is some fine, expensive wine right here. Look at those years! This is fantastic stuff!

"What? I would love to, but I can't exactly open up the door you have the key to while I'm chained to a wall."


Gulp at that and run towards the voice!
"Sir! We are here to save you!"


"Oh my Oh my!" I pocket two of them and put one inside my bag and put one magically in my hat.

ALright lets go outside and meet the others and leave Gotti.

"Is there someone trapped inside?" I look at Sonnet.


"Oh, you are a prisoner!
Do not worry, we shall free you!"


"Much obliged."
A different voice speaks up, this one coming from a mare.
"Who are you?"

You bag two bottles of wine.


"Paladins of Her Loving Embrace, here to save you!"
Can I undo the bonds?

Roll #1 6 = 6


"We are here to help. My name is Angelite. We were sent here to free any ponies captured and handle the criminals."


I hope no one minds if I bring some of this with me.
After all, food is such a terrible thing to waste


Hard to do so when there's a locked door separating you from them.
You manage to smash the lock though. As you open the door, you see a larger room beyond it. Several tables are set up with various tools lying on top of them. This looks like some kind of workshop.
You also see an older crystal stallion chained to the wall with one of his legs, limiting his movement considerably. Aside from that, you see a younger unicorn mare with… a golem leg also chained to a wall. She's a bit shorter than average and appears to be a bit frail.

The stallion grins.
"That's good to hear, I knew Jubilee would send someone!"

It sure is. You grab some of the stuff in here and stow it away in your bags.


"We are hired here to save you guys from trouble."

I look at their locks, can I produce a key from my hat?
Hat trick.

Roll #1 3 + 2 = 5


I try to smash their locks loose. '1d10'

Roll #1 6 = 6


That's rather hard. They seem enchanted with some kind of spell that prevents them from being simply broken and the lock itself is rather complicated.
The mare speaks up as she sees you struggle.
"We've tried breaking these chains, but there's just no way."

No matter how hard you try, it just doesn't seem possible with brute force unless you break the spell.


"Be careful, thank you."

"Yes, you shall be fine from now. I assure you, we will free you as soon as we can."


Shatter the mare's lock!

Roll #1 8 = 8


"Do you by any chance know who has the key to these infernal locks?"


I frown.
"A magic based lock lets see."
Can I identify the spell? What is it? Do I know anyway to dispell it?


Roll #1 9 = 9


Impossible, comrade.

The mare speaks up again.
"Probably the guy in charge. They call him Knuth. We've been kept in here and forced to work ever since they kidnapped us, so I don't know where he hangs out."
The stallion nods.
"Yes, he must have the keys lying around somewhere."

There definitely is a way to break spells such as these, yes. You lack the skills to do so, however.

"Good, good… My name is Fletcher."


Shatter the wall around the lock!

Roll #1 8 = 8


"Knut? Who is he? Do you know where he is now?" I look at her.


Also lets look around a bit if a key is lying around.

Roll #1 7 = 7


"I do ask for your patience. Maybe the one called Knuth has the keys, and we will have to find and convince him to hoof them over first."


A wise idea, you smash the rock to which the chain is firmly attached. Gravel and small rocks fall from the ceiling all around you. … Though a few more of these hits and the chain might come loose!
The stallion puts a hoof on your shoulder.
"Whoa now, be careful young one."

She gives you a deadpan look.

No key.
"If it was lying around here, we'd have found it by now."

He nods.
"Thank you, stranger. We only wish to return to our homes."


Grin in satisfaction.

"We have a way!
What about this spell?"


"We'll find this Khut"


"Please, do consider that this will not undo their bonds entirely. I advise that we find the key and who has it instead."

Smile at him.
"No need to be strangers, feel free to call me Angelite. And we'll get you home, as promised."


"We agree!
The culprit will not escape Her Embrace!"


"It only seems to prevent the chain and lock to be smashed with brute force. If you could get rid of it, you wouldn't even need a key. Otherwise, getting that key seems like the only safe way to set us free. I'm sorry."

The mare looks at the three of you.
"Watch yourselves, one of my golems is roaming around here somewhere. I can't stop it without direct access so… be careful. It's very valuable."


"Alright then, have it your own way." I huff at the prisoner.

"Should we go now or should we stick around. Perhaps ther are mor e of them here."


Stare down at the walls behind the mare.
How much would it take to free them?


The stallion speaks up.
"Oh definitely, there are more prisoners around here somewhere, but we don't know where. We don't even know why they took us here. These mines haven't been used in over a decade."

Another good hit could be enough. But… it does hold some danger.


"We should go right now."

I wince.
"I do apologize, but I believe that golem was hijacked by the leader of this group, and has been used against us… we had no other way of bypassing it than forcefully deactivating it. I am terribly sorry."


Eh, nevermind.
"We shall share in Her Love with the golem, do not fear!"

So, is there a way to go or not?


"Yes lets. I cant stand being underground surrounded by dirt." I huff.

"Why is that? Isnt mines considered to be profitable?" I look at the stallion.
"Also, do you know who these captors are? What are they?"


File: 1381344278464.png (7.59 KB, 424x389, LAYOUT CAVE.png) ImgOps Google

She bites her lower lip hard enough to draw some blood.
"Those… assholes…"
She sighs and shakes her head.
"How bad is it?"

Yes. The cave continues on outside the door.

"For a long time these mines provided wealth for the town of Winterheim… until profits started to drop and our quotas became harder and harder to meet. They closed one by one due to the lack of resources. I do not understand "


Woops, posted too soon by accident

The stallion nods
"For a long time these mines provided wealth for the town of Winterheim… until profits started to drop and our quotas became harder and harder to meet. They closed one by one due to the lack of resources. I do not understand what they are hoping to achieve here, nor do I know who they are."


"Pretty bad… I am sorry. I am not sure if it is recoverable."


I'll go further down the cave to recon.


"I see, so not only is it a cave but a barren one. Now lets get out of here before they come back here."

errr… I waited as he do that.


She stomps her two front hooves and snorts angrily… which doesn't really seem all that intimidating because of her smaller frame.
The older stallion offers her an apologetic smile.
"I'm sorry Cassie."

You advance further into the cave on your own until you reach a larger, open cave with stalagmites and tites in it. There are torches all around, lighting up the place and you hear noise coming from up ahead.
… The sound of pickaxes chipping away at rock.


"I am truly sorry, but I am sure that somepony as skilled as you can craft another such marvel if you succeded in doing so the first time."


I just look at the golem as we wait for Gotti.
"It was a stubborn one if you ask me but its not a bad work."


Can I sneakily take a look where that comes from? '1d10'

Roll #1 8 = 8


She grinds her teeth.
"I used to have several, but all of them save for one were destroyed in that attack. Last I saw, my workshop in town was on fire while we were being dragged off, which means I probably lost all my materials, including my precious golem core crystals. Without those, I can't do a damned thing."

Yes. Near the end of the cave you see a bunch of chained ponies picking away at the rock. They are being watched over by several ponies, including the stallion you saw earlier that teleported away.


"Well you cant do a damn thing if you dont do anything." I look at the mare prisoner(whats her name?
"Then what are you going to do about it?" I look at her in the eye.


I'mma go get the others and tell them.


I give her a look.

"I am certain that it can be salvaged. If not, I am sure we can figure a way to solve that problem once we are out of this mess."


The stallion referred to her as Cassie.
"I'm chained to a wall, I can't do anything right now except inflicting beatings on these bandits in my imagination."

You return to the workshop.

"Right. At least you don't have to worry about being attacked by my golem anymore."


"I found the teleporting leader. He's further down the tunnel."


"Bah. Let's get you to shut the golem down instead."
Shatter the wall again, free them.

Roll #1 3 = 3


I smile at her.
"What if you can do that in reality? Perhaps a kick or two to the shin would be very…. liberating, dont you think?"

I nod at Gotti.
"So what Cassie, want to liberate more ponies?"


"I'm sorry… we shall make this right, I promise you."

"Let us not waste any more time then, and get these ponies out of these shackles."


"Yes lets." I pull out my small crossbow and load it with a bolt.


More rocks fall down from the ceiling, one of them hitting you on the head. Ow!

She points at her golem leg.
"I'm not exactly a vicious fighter."

"Well you made it this far already, that's good."

The stallion nods in agreement.
"We are very grateful for your efforts."


OOkay, nevermind.
"Too risky."


I pat her in the head.
"Dont worry, if we capture the guy who is behind this operation I'll let you give him or her a lesson or two."


"That's fine. Just go get that key and we'll be free."

She scrunches as you pat her.


Go back to the place with the guy and pickaxes.




"So how many?" I follow Gotti from behind.


"A bunch of them. Nothing I can't handle."


Stare at him.
"It'd not be too wise…"


"Maybe they are reasonable, just like the ones from before!"


You head deeper into the caves, leaving Fletcher and Cassie behind in the workshop. Eventually you arrive in a much bigger and rougher cave filled with stalagmites and tites and dripping with water. Torches light up the path cleared by ponies all the way up to the back of the cave, where five chained up ponies are busy picking away at a wall. Four guards have formed a circle around them as they keep a close eye on them. Meanwhile, the stallion from earlier is looking through some papers stacked on a small wooden table.


"We shall move ahead and try to make them see Her Love!"


"I could distract them if you ask me while you guys do…. something?"


"Let me try talking first. It might work again."

Walk up and clear my throat.
"Dear ponies, please do not be alarmed. I am Angelite, a diplomat and negotiator sent here by the major, and we strive to resolve this conflict in a way that no harm befalls anypony involved. I would like you to hear me out."
Smooth Talker.

Roll #1 4 + 2 = 6


The guards turn around, startled by your appearance.
"What the…?"

The stallion looks up from his papers and frowns.
"You're not dead. Why are you not dead, you stupid mare? This means you have killed my other ponies and the golem sent after you."


"Correction, we hurt nopony. They have seen the error of their ways and heard the whispers of the Lover. They gave up crime, and so shall you, to unlock the fastest possible path to happiness and prosperity."
The Good Word on the guards.

Roll #1 1 = 1


The stallion just facehoofs.
"Just kill them. I have enough headaches already and don't need this moron adding to it."
All four of the guards charge at you while the stallion moves over to the prisoners, who have stopped working to watch all of this unfold.
He stomps on a part of the chain and casts a lightening spell, shocking all the prisoners and making them scream in pain as the current is carried by the chains.


Oh dear….

I step up and smile.
Okay think.. think…
"About happiness and prosperity, I think I can provide that!!"
Pull out a

Oh okay!
A walking bomb and let it walk towards them.

Roll #1 5 + 2 = 7


"Stop right there you heatens!"
Empower weapons!
'1d10+3' Smash them!

Roll #1 1 + 3 = 4


"I see. You leave us no choice."

Stand back.
"May the Lover have Mercy on you."

Roll #1 8 = 8


Time to taste the mace! '1d10'

Roll #1 10 = 10


You pull out a bomb(?) and lob it over to the group of guards. It explodes, sending one of them hurling through the air and crashing into the ground, wounded.

A guard dodges your attack and jabs you in the gut with a dagger, cutting deep. You fall over in pain, helpless.

You and the other members of your group know that the Goddess does not approve of practices like this. She's on your side to be sure! +1 to all rolls next turn.

You absolutely demolish one of the guards with your heavy mace, sending him reeling while bleeding heavily.

Sonnet glory: Helpless / 4 wounds


'1d10+1', get up!

Roll #1 6 + 1 = 7


Wait, I critfailed, so that's just a 6.


Haha, slam the stallion '1d10'

Roll #1 5 = 5


"You get one last chance! Flee while you can! The Lover will surely forgive you if you atone for your sins!"
Smooth Talker? At least I can stall them, if nothing else.

Roll #1 9 + 3 = 12


Haha! Put on my hat shoot my crossbow bolt to one of the guards.
Wait where is the leader?

Roll #1 9 = 9


You shakily get back up. That smarts…

That's a 6.
You slam into him as he staggers around dazedly. Crushing him to death.

The wounded guard that was hit by the explosion scrambles to his hooves and runs off. Probably more out of cowardice than anything.

You hit one of the two remaining guards with a bolt, making him yell in agony.
The leader is watching over the prisoners.


But I'm a zebra?


Time to make neuter them!
Shatter their daggers!

Roll #1 9 = 9


Yes, but you had Inspire!


The Mace is ace '1d10'

Roll #1 5 = 5


Teleport next to the leader
and pull out shackles from my hat to tie him up.

Roll #1 4 = 4 / Roll #2 10 = 10


"You can only lose from violence, one way or another. Surrender now, and we will be merciful and forgive you."

Roll #1 7 = 7


You wreck the daggers from the guard that stabbed you earlier
"What the-!? No fair!"

You swing your mace but miss by a long shot.

A good effort, but Teleport is not instant. You can't make two actions in one turn. Invalid action.

The guards don't seem to care at this point, but you inspire your group once again.
+1 to rolls next turn.

Two guards remain. One wounded, the other unarmed.


Stare him down.
"Stay put!"
Jump onto the next with my still active empowered weapons!
And the bonus from critting!

Roll #1 9 + 4 = 13


Time for guard slamming '1d10+1'

Roll #1 3 + 1 = 4


Ah damn.
Pull out a rope from my hat and start to tie up the guards that are already down

Roll #1 7 = 7


Walk over to the wounded one.
"I implore you to surrender."
Smooth Talker.

Roll #1 10 + 2 = 12


You crash through the wounded guard, violently killing him with extreme holy power. He's dead before he hit the ground.

The unarmed guard punches you as you try to slam into him.
"Fuck off!"

You tie up the corpses of the two dead guards. That'll teach them! Hah!

He's dead as fuck.
The last one, who is unarmed, just widens his eyes at you and makes a run for it.


Hit him back with my hoof '1d10'

Roll #1 6 = 6


He's gone. Ran away.


Stand down.
"By Her Love, repent!"


I frown with a sigh.
"Was that really neccesary?"


All the guards are either dead or have fled.
The stallion just shakes his head and sighs.
"Why do you insist on being such a bother? This is none of your business."


"We did try to disarm them. But then Her will overtook us."
"Everything is the Lover's business, heaten!"


Gah!! Step back, I didnt notice.

I point a big hoof at him.
"Because you are an asshole and a slaver, and a slaver of your own kind nonetheless. How despicable!"


Sadly shake my head.

"You should have thought of that, before enslaving ponies."


"The Lover… pfah."
He clearly doesn't think highly of her.

"A slaver? How typical, I am nothing of the sorts you little fools. I would have let these ponies go as soon as we got what we came here for. Unfortunately, I'm starting to believe it is not here. Not anymore, at least. "


"A criminal, nevertheless."


Pull out some manacles from my hat.
"Now now, dont deny it. We can all see the evidence. Just come with us quietly and all will be well."


Squint my eyes at her.
"You just witnessed Her power through us.
Don't deny."


He frowns.
"No, not at all. We conscripted these ponies for the greater good. But blind fools such as yourself wouldn't know anything about this."

He looks at the prisoners behind him, all of them still working hard.
"I think it is time for me to leave. I have wasted enough time here."
He takes out a silver key from a pocket and drops it in front of him.
"Free them, so that you may feel good about yourself and carry on with your life, thinking so highly of yourself while blindly worshiping your wicked goddess."


"Her power is as wicked as you are for trying to ruin our operations."


"You might think you can get away with this even if you flee, but I assure you that you will not. Fate will catch up to you eventually."


"What are you looking for here?"


"If fate catches up with me, then so be it. My death will change nothing in the end."

He looks you over suspiciously.
"Why would I tell you, servants of the depraver?"


"Why not?"


"Enlighten us then."


"Because knowledge should not be shared with those who oppose you."

He places his hoof on the key.
"You will let me pass freely."


"Pass you by? Why would we?" I raise an eyebrow.
"We could just beat you up and take it off your hoof you know."


"How about I buy you a beer and we talk about it?"


"You may have defeated my guards, but I am far stronger than they are. You will likely die and it will cost me energy I cannot waste on trivialities such as this. Let me pass and you can free these prisoners, reclaim their goods and leave this place unharmed."

He glowers at you.
"I think not."


"More of a wine pony then?"


"The freedom of those ponies is more important than capturing you. We accept the terms."


"Yes. You no doubt have stumbled upon my stash and stolen it already. Now I am in a hurry to move on, so enough of this endless talk."

He takes his hoof off of the key and teleports past you, trotting out of the cavern you're in.
The prisoners carefully turn to look at all of you.


"In that case I'll leave you be. Do you have any cigars by the way. We could trade."


Pick up the key and free the chained ponies.
"I am truly sorry for the inconvinience."


"We should not have let him go."


He ignores you and simply moves on until disappearing from sight

You unlock all the chains on the ponies, who seem ecstatic about this.
"Oh no, thank you!"
"Finally, these blasted collars are gone!"
"Did the mayor send you?"


"We'll have another shot. Ponies like that can't help but do stupid things again and again."


"The mayor sent us, yes. You are all free to go."
Take the key, I still need it to free the others.
"Are there any more of you aside Miss Cassie and Mr. Fletcher?"

"He will be a wanted pony. He will be caught eventually."


"Yes, she did. She's very concerned for you."
Look stoic beyond, towards the distance.


"Thank goodness!"
"No, this is all. Are they okay? We haven't seen them since they took us here…"

One of the mares giggles
"I bet she was!"


"We will escort you back. Stay close."


"They are mostly fine, but are locked up in a different chamber. I shall get to freeing them at once, if you'll excuse me."

Let's head back to where they were, and free them as well.


I will escort those fine ladies as well.


"We will, we will!"
"Thank you, strangers, I was getting worried there."

You head back to the workshop and free Fletcher and Cassie with the key.
"Hah, you succeeded. Good job."
"Yes indeed, well done. Are the others unharmed?"


"If you refer to the ponies who kidnapped you, no they are not."


"They seem to be doing fine, but I'm afraid the guards suffered some casualities."


That's Fletcher talking to Angelite about the other prisoners.
Anyway, you and the prisoners head back to the workshop as well. Everyone seems happy about being rescued like this. Who wouldn't be, after all?

Cassie shrugs and starts rounding up some tools lying around.
"Good riddance."
Fletcher nods at this.
"So be it. Now… I believe there ought to be stolen supplies lying around here somewhere."


Ask the names of the mares I saved.


Oh yeah.
Shine in happiness at a job well done.
"We should make haste back to town."


I nod.
"Across here, behind another door, yes."


Well there is Cassie, but you know her already.
Aside from that, there's only two other mares. Edelweiss, who you know to be the mayor's daughter, and Sunny Haze. You realize they probably took more stallions because they tend to be physically stronger.

Fletcher nods and walks out of the workshop.
"Indeed we should."

"We will transport it back come tomorrow then. We'll need carts to tow it out of here again."


"I suppose you want to leave this dreary place for now."


Cassie finishes packing and walks out of the workshop as well.
"Yes. Where is my golem? I'll try and see if I can salvage something from it."


Blush a bit.
Point towards the entrance.


She walks off into that direction. Moments later you hear a cry of frustration.


Whistle nonchalantly and start trotting past her.


Catch up to her.
"I guess that's a no?"


"Miss Edelweiss, we'll make sure you're home soon, safe and sound"


You trot past her, rescued prisoners in tow, and head outside.

She fumbles a bit with the insides before getting up with a sigh.
"Core is fried, everything jammed up and got smashed to pieces. It's beyond repair."

The crystal mare with the pearly white coat cocks her head.
"How do you know my name? From my mother?"


"Is everypony here?"


"Yes, she sent us to make sure you and the others are returned home"


They all nod.
"We're complete!"
"What's your name, hero?"

"Of course she did… she must have been worried sick about us."


"I am truly sorry. There is still hope that your workshop is intact."


"We are Sonnet Glory of Her Love, and my companions…"
Wave a hoof towards the others, waiting for them to introduce themselves.


She lets out a wry snort.
"Last I saw it was completely ablaze. So I doubt it."
She gets up and kicks the destroyed golem with a soft grunt, then walks out of the cave.


Frown, then head back to the rest.


Fletcher looks at the both you.
"It is cold out, we should be moving."


I nod.
"Yes, let us leave."


Gather my bearings and start marching at a good peace, leading the way.


Time to move.


You head back downhill, careful not to slip on any icy surfaces. Before soon, you reach town again.
Edelweiss runs the last part of the trip and quickly heads inside the inn. Fletcher finds his workshop to be somewhat damaged by the fire, but still mostly intact. Cassie picks up a discarded and charred sign from the road reading 'Cassie's Shop' and looks at the pile of burned rubble in front of her with a grim expression on her face.


I go stand next to Cassie.


Walk over to her.
"I might have an offer for you…"


That will not do.
Approach her.
"We will fix this."


She raises a brow and looks at the three of you.
"Look, I'm not looking for a pity talk. Bad luck for me, that's all there is to it. No way in hell I'm staying in Winterheim… I moved here from Equestria because I wanted something fresh and new and look what it got me."


"I wanted to give you a proposal, not a pity talk."


"There is much your abilities can do in other places."


She eyes you for a moment.
"… What kind of a proposal?"

"Exactly. I'll just move to a bigger town where it's safer and start over or something. Craftsponies can always find work if you put your back into it."


"I have connections and wealth in the crystal capital. I do believe that with a recommendation from me, your talent would warrant you a place to work at there."


"… Crystopolis?"
She turns to face you.
"You have my attention."


"Why yes, Crystopolis. I am from there, you see, and me and my family could help you get work there. My only condition is that you use your knowledge for the good of ponykind and to help as many as you can.2


"What do you mean with that? I can't just do everything for free, I need to eat as well as buy supplies to build stuff out of."


"Oh, why of course. You would get a payment and such, live a normal life. The condition is for the recommendation I would give to you, so you might find a job with ease."


"I build what my customers order me to. Be it a golem specifically designed to water flowers, a replacement limb for amputees or a unique sword for a mercenary… that's just my job. But I am honest about it. I always deliver quality work and pour my heart and soul into every piece I make."


"I see… You could cut back on the weapons and still profit, couldn't you?"
Good Word!

Roll #1 6 = 6


"Well… yes. Yes I could. After all, golemcrafting is my specialty, not weaponsmithing."


I smile.
"Grand! I shall write you a recommendation letter first thing tomorrow! Until then, let us rest."


Go back into the inn.
Where's that mayor?


"Right. And hey… thanks. For doing this."

You head back to the inn, everyone seems relieved and happy that the kidnapped ponies were all returned safely.
The mayor mare is busy talking to her daughter near the bar, she seems much more shinier than before.


I smile.
"Don't worry about it."


She walks over to the rubble which used to be her workshop and starts poking around, looking for anything salvageable.
Fletcher is assessing the damage done to his own workshop while the rest of the crystal ponies are presumably at the inn.


Oh I don't want to disturb them now.
Get another beer first.


To the inn I head myself, then.


The barkeep grins at you and hoofs you a mug of beer.
"On the house, buddy."

It's even more crowded than before! But the atmosphere is much more relaxed and happy as well. These ponies are relieved that everything worked out somewhat okay.
Some of them turn to smile at you.


Time to find the mayor!


She's speaking to her daughter near the bar, both are looking shiny as fuck.


Smile back at them, and take a seat somewhere.


You sit down at the bar, next to Gotti and a stallion smoking a pipe.
"Good show, stranger… good show. Ponies here are calling you heroes now."


This is kind of a joyful sight.
It's my first time helping someone for real…
Go to the bar counter with a smile, sitting near Angelite.


"Oh, we are no heroes. We just did what was right."


He inhales deeply, then blows a few rings of smoke in the air above him.
"Yes you did, stranger. It makes a pony like me wonder what you will do next… the mayor will no doubt invite you to settle here in Winterheim. You could live a fairly comfortable life here if you wished to do so. Everypony likes and knows of you already."


"We shall move on instead, and make good deeds be the norm all across the Empire!
For this is our duty. Nay, our priviledge!"


I smile.
"As good as that sounds, I must carry on."


"Hm. I see. A most honorable of mindsets."
He chuckles.
"The empire is a big place though, where will you go first? The capital? Brilliance? Fillygree? Ponestadt? Or something more to the east like Crystalport, Sunstone or Oreborg? Plenty of choice to be had."

"Well then… if you happen to pass by Brilliance… I highly recommend you find and meet with a pony called Desert Gold."


Perk up.
"Do elaborate."


"Well, to call her a pony may be offensive, I do not know."
He smirks.
"She's one of those Saddle-Arabian types, you see."


"Ah, I see.
And do you think she might need help of some sort too, or guide us to those who do?"


Start mumbling to myself.


Are the mayor and her daughter still talking?


"No. Miss Gold is a geologist who works for the city of Brilliance. She is a busy mare, so getting her attention may not be easy. Tell her of what happened here in Winterheim. This was no ordinary bandit raid, after all."

He chuckles.
"Brilliance certainly is a prosperous mining site, yes."

They are. You'll just have to butt in from the looks of it.


I nod.
"And that leader of them, he escaped. He will have to pay."


Next session I'll butt them in


The stallion gets up from his seat.
"Knuth is just a single cog in the machine, nothing more. Don't be too focused on them."
He bows his head slightly.
"Goodbye stranger. Safe travels to you."
He turns around and leaves.



I look at him a bit warily as he leaves.


The party remains inside the inn of Winterheim, surrounded by the townsfolk who appear to be far less distressed now that the kidnapped ponies have been returned to the village. Some remain nervous about the possibility of a repeat attack, but overall the atmosphere is much better than before. All of this thanks to the efforts of the party, for which the town is very grateful.
The mayor is near the bar, speaking to her daughter Edelweiss still.
The anonymous stallion has taken his leave.
Fletcher has joined the crowd inside the inn.
Cassie is nowhere in sight.


Join Fletcher.
"I suspect you have measured the damage to your workshop?"


He gives you a pleased nod.
"Yes. And fortunately, it is rather limited. I will need to clean things up before I can get to work again, but that shouldn't prove to be too difficult. Shame Cassie can't say the same thing…"


Go and stick next to Angelite.

"Will Cassie be okay? That automaton of hers got really trashed around."



I smile.
"I already took steps to resolve her problem."


"You'd have to ask her, but her shop was burned to a crisp along with her equipment. That leaves her with… essentially nothing. She's not the quitter type of pony though, so I'm sure she'll recover."

"Ah, see? She will be fine."


"Do you know where she is right now?"


"I am hoping the lives of everypony can return to normal."


"Last I saw, she was poking around the rubble that used to be her workshop for anything salvageable."

"Oh I wouldn't worry too much about that… we always endure and move on. You have done us all a great service though, for which all of us are thankful. I'm sure you will be properly awarded too."


I pat his back smiling.
"Thanks pal, I'll go and see if I can do something to help her out."
Go to Cassie's (burnt) workshop.


"Knowing that this settlement and it's inhabitants are safe and can return to their lives is all the reward I need."


Well, that's a big ol' pile of burnt rubble alright. Cassie is poking around the wreckage, occasionally floating items out of the ashes with her telekinesis and inspecting them, before either discarding them again or stowing them away in a bag.

"That's very kind of you, but a pony still needs to eat, no? Evening's starting to fall as we speak, after all."


Approach her slowly.
"They've done a number on you huh, those bastards." I give her a sad smile


"Oh, you shan't worry about my finances."


She turns to look at you.
"Yes, as is evident by this smoldering pile of wood. There's nothing left for me here, no reason to stay. Your friend already gave me an offer to work in Crystopolis somewhere, so I'd like to recover whatever I can before I leave."

"If you say so, lass… but really, you ought to talk to the mayor about these kind of things. I'm sure she'd like a word… if you can pry her away from her daughter."
He chuckles.


"I see, so it seems you will be sticking with us for awhile huh? Who knows maybe there are far more opportunities out there in Crystopolis than here."
I go around and help her out salvaging whatever parts that are salvageable. Anything I find?

Roll #1 5 = 5


"You are quite right, not to mention it would be rude not to speak to her in person."
Stand up.
"If you'll excuse me."


"Will I? I don't know, depends if you're going that way or not."
Just charred items and ashes, nothing really useful.

"Don't let me stop you."


I stand up on two legs and pound my chest with my hoof.
"I really dont know about the others but I am a travelling bard. I go wherever there is someone to entertain! If someone is unhappy I will be there to make them smile."
"And well of course I also need more bits and gold since pay is really not that secure outside of Equestria." I smile.


Nod at him politely, then head over to the mayor.


"Well moving around is hard when you have a shop to tend to and so much equipment to carry."
She looks around and snorts bitterly.
"Not exactly an issue for me anymore though, is it?"

She doesn't even notice you approach, being too busy talking to her daughter.
"- I can't believe it! Why in the Goddesses name would they try to start up the mines again? That's a crazy task!"
"Well… I don't know either, but it seemed like they were looking for something important. Maybe that was their only goal?"


Listen in.
Not out of eavesdropping.
Just for patient waiting.


Edelweiss has noticed you waiting.
"No Edelweiss, what could possibly so important that- What? Something wrong?"
"Uh, I think somepony wants to speak with you, mom."
The mayor turns around and notices you.
"Oh! I'm sorry, I was just so engrossed with talking to my daughter I almost forgot!"
She takes your hoof and shakes it.
"I owe you an enormous debt, hero… we all do. Come tomorrow, I will gather what we can spare and give you your reward. You fully deserve it! Please, feel free to spend the night here in the inn for free."


I sit next to her and give her a saddened look.
"Hey, as long as you are standing on all four hooves there is still hope. There are far worse scenario's that a pony can be and those who keep their head up are able to get throug with it."
I then offer a hoof.
"Say why dont we go to the Inn so we can join the others and grab a drink or two. If not I can help you sort the rubble and look for anything that is salvageable.'


I smile, and return the hoof gesture.
"I appreciate the offer for the accomodation, but I personally must refuse the reward. Wealth was of no concern for me when I volunteered for this task."


And I'm here now.


"Yes, I could have lost a leg. Oh wait."
She glances at her golem leg.
"Nevermind that thought. Look, I appreciate that you want to help me but… I'll be fine. I just need to gather what I can and move on. I can't hold my drink anyway."

She looks taken aback.
"But… you helped us! We are honorbound to reward you for that!"

Angelite is talking to the mayor, Helaine is talking to Cassie outside.


I'll walk over to the mayor.


"Your gratefulness is reward enough."


I pat her back.
"Alright, I believe in you. You stay out there Cassie, if you need anything just come by to the Inn." I smile and leave her as I make my way back to the Inn. Whats happening there?


>"You stay 'safe' out there Cassie.


She looks confused.
"And you… are you refusing the reward as well?"

"I don't even know what to say to that."
Edelweiss butts in.
"You will stay at the inn tonight though, will you?"

Ponies are starting to leave back for their homes as night is falling. Angelite and Gotti are conversing with the mayor.


I nod.
"Yes, I will. I don't want to seem too rude, and I admit I must rest out the troubles of today."


"What kind of reward?"


Approach them.

I look at her weirded out.
"H.. hey, but didnt we do this for gold? I.. I mean helping out is good and all but we got to eat sometimes after all."


She smiles.
"Good. Thank you again, miss Angelite. For rescuing me."
She hesitates for a moment before continuing.
"Will you hunt down that guy? Knuth?"

The mayor nods.
"I wanted to gather the necessary funds for your reward tomorrow. We can't offer you much aside from a sum of money and free stay at the inn, I'm afraid."


"That's most generous of you."


"Yay! More spending money." I smile at the Mayor before turning serious.
"Do you think they will come back to this town to get revenge?"


"Oh, I was speaking for myself. I will not stop you if you wish to get paid."

"I intend to, yes. I will do everything within my reach to see him brought before justice."


"Please, you have done our village a great service. We can't thank you enough for that."

"I don't know, there's always that danger out here. We're far away from the capital and quite isolated… then, it's not like our village has much to offer either. I still don't understand why they came here in the first place."

"Good. He deserves it. That bastard…"


"I'd love to know more about this village. Perhaps over dinner?"


"Well they are assholes of the highest calibre. Reminds me of those who lives outside of Equestrian soil but no matter. At least it is safe now."
I then fly a little and close my arms/hooves.
"You got to request for more guards, in these times one can never be too safe, you know what I mean?"


Outside of the inn, on the snowy road to the village of Winterheim, two travelers move. Are they both here by chance? Or is there more to it? Do they know each other? Traveled with each other? Or are they two stranger arriving at the same time?

Whatever their reasonings may be, they can see the village closing in now. And they both see clear signs of battle. Charred rubble where buildings once stood, bloodstains on the streets and snow… no bodies though. It seems the battle is long over.
Night is falling quickly and ponies are retreating back into their homes. One unicorn pony with a strange leg appears to be searching for something in a destroyed building. Up ahead, they see what must be an inn. There are a few shops as well, but all of them are closed and some of them have been damaged by what must have been fire.

What will these two souls do?

"Dinner? Well… why not? Things have calmed down by now enough to relax again."

The mayor nods.
"Yes, that I will. The capital will hear of this post-haste. They'll surely send some extra guards to secure the town in response."


"How wonderful!"
How late is it?


I try to sneak past the pony.

Roll #1 3 = 3


I'll call out to the pony searching the wreckage. "Hey, do you need any help?!"


It must be close to 8 PM now.
"The food will be on me, of course."

You're not exactly being sneaky there.
Then, it appears the mare is utterly uninterested in you and continues to focus her attention on looking through the rubble.

She doesn't even look up.
"No thanks, I'm fine."


I'll pass the strange mare and go into town. can I tell what happened?

Roll #1 2 = 2


"Of course."


"What happened here?"


Obviously, this is the work of a dragon. The signs of fire all point to that conclusion. Crystal ponies are walking gems, aren't they? So it's natural that a dragon would swoop in for dinner!

"Well then, shall I arrange a table?"

She glances over at you for a moment before continuing her search.
"Bandit raid is what happened, stranger. They burned down my shop right here."


"Filthy beasts."
Can I see anyone aside from the mare?

Roll #1 5 = 5


"By all means, I'll follow you"


"Thank you sir that is good."I smile.

Now lets look at the mood of the Inn? How was it? Perhaps I can a thing or two to make it alive?


Frown deeply "Is there anything I do to help? Which way did they go?"
start helping her clean up '1d10'

Roll #1 9 = 9


Two ponies are exiting the inn right now. They must be headed to their homes.

Edelweiss gets the hint and moves on to a different spot as her mother walks over to the innkeep and asks for a table for the two of you.
You are assigned to a table in the corner of the inn, near the fireplace.
"I recommend trying the crystal corn with berrysauce. It's very good."

The mayor is a mare!
Many ponies have left the inn for their own homes, so the commotion has died down considerably. It's nice and warm in here though, and there's still several ponies drinking.

"Nope. A bunch of other guys already swooped in and solved the issue. The bandits captured me as well, so now that I'm rescued I get to pick up whatever I can salvage from my ruined workshop."
You try and scavenge whatever intact tools and items you can find and hoof them to her.
"I think that's about all I'll be able to save from this pile of junk. All of the valuable things were destroyed in the fire anyway."
She hovers the bag of items onto her back and grunts. … You notice that this pony isn't exactly strong looking. She's somewhat thinner and shorter than the average pony. Aside from that, she isn't wearing armor on that weird looking leg… it's a golem leg!


Look concerned "Oh I see.. Are you going to be alright?"


"Excuse me, you two! Where is the dragon that attacked this place?"


"I'll be sure to try it. Is there any wine you could recommend?"


…does this mean me?


I approach the group of ponies.
"So how is life in this place hmm?" I raise an eyebrow.


I have no idea.


"Instead of revenge, you should concentrate on the life you got back and the joys you can have once again. It is healthier for the soul and mind."


"Well one of them offered me work in the capital, so that's where I'm going. Start from scratch… again."
She starts walking over to the inn.

The two ponies look at each other for a moment, then back at you.
"… Dragon? What dragon?"
"Bandits attack this place, not a dragon!"

"A Prench Chardonnay maybe? Or are you more of a red wine stallion? I have to admit, good wine isn't easy to come by out here, but they're not too bad."

The ponies at the bar, Edelweiss included, turn to you.
"Life out here? Harsh sometimes. Mostly peaceful though, or at least before those bandits came. Winters can be a real bother too at times."

You're not exiting the inn, are you?

Edelweiss moved on to another group of ponies while her mother is sitting at a table with Gotti.


"Oh. Bandits, really? In this peaceful nation?"


Well, I might as well try to enjoy myself as well and join a group of ponies.


I shrug with a smile.
"Well I suppose I cant challenge any of you guys and gals to a friendly game of cards I suppose. Well if you want to get the time passing by a bit and do some bets." I then reveal a set of cards from my hat.
Magical entertainment

Roll #1 8 + 2 = 10


I will head over to the inn as well. "Good luck out there."


"They never really bothered us before now. Not since the mines closed anyway, we're too poor and insignificant to attract any real attention nowadays. It's already been taken care of though, a group of ponies swooped in and gave them a good whatfor! That'll teach them to prey on us!"
The mare nods in agreement.
"Yeah, they're real heroes! They saved me from being enslaved!"

You walk back over to Edelweiss, who is talking with a bunch of other ponies including Helaine.

"Heeeeeyyy, I like your style!"
"Oh wow, look at that!"
"Where did those even come from? Do you keep cards under your hat?"
Edelweiss chuckles.
"I guess some cards to pass the time couldn't hurt."

"Thanks, I'll need it."
You both enter the inn.
Inside you see a group of ponies looking amazed at a pegasus with a pack of cards near the bar, a crystal mare and zebra stallion sharing a table somewhere in the back and various other crystal ponies enjoying the company of other ponies and alcohol.
The unicorn mare looks around for a moment, before heading over to a crystal mare.


"A group of heroes? Really? Do they travel?"


I give them a sly grin before taking a seat and handling the cards to them.
"Perhaps a game of Poker might be in effect. Those who lose gets to take a shot of the strongest drink what do you ponies say?"
Also any of them stallions playing on the table?


"I was hoping to try a local wine if the Empire has those"


Observe the show for now.


Approach slowly. Lets see what this crystal mare is up too.


"A zebra? I thought they were all demon possessed rabble."


"Well they're sure not from around here! There's even one of them zebra folks with them!"
The mare nods again.
"Yeah, they must be adventurers or something, you don't get skills like those without having traveled a fair bit."

Two mares, three stallions. Not counting Angelite, who is observing from a distance.
"Heck yeah!"
"Sounds like a fun time to me."

"Of course!"
The barkeep comes over.
"Mayor. Sir. What would the two of you like to order?"

Cassie approaches you with a bag strapped to her back.
"Found some more stuff worth taking. Nothing too spectacular though. I'll have to start from scratch."

She's standing at the bar, watching another group of ponies get excited about playing cards. The unicorn mare seems to know her.


"No, Cassie, you will have a name for you, which I will make sure for you. That is something that nopony can take away from you."


Slide next to the group keeping an eye on the unicorn and crystal ponies. "What are we playing, what are the stakes?"


"Crystal corn with berrysauce and a salad as sidedish with lots of coleslaw. And do you have any local wines?"


Hands out the cards and lets play.
Lets see how my luck fare's!

Roll #1 7 = 7


"Well this one sure isn't! Go see for yourself, he's in the inn with the others!"

She shakes her head defiantly.
"No matter how good my reputation is, I can't create anything without the tools and resources."

"Yeah, that. No money, just drinking when you lose."

"Sure do, lad. For you, I'll get out my finest."
"I'll have what he's having."
He takes off again.
"So… what brings a zebra all the way up North anyway? Winterheim doesn't get many tourists these days, as you can imagine."



"If you say so."
I go into the inn.


Smirk, its hard to resist a good game, I'll order a tall drink and look to the crystal mare.
"All right deal me in."


"Curiosity, I've been hearing stories of an Empire filled with shining ponies up North while travelling through Equestria. I wanted to know if they were true. And I'm not disappointed"



Roll #1 3, 10, 10, 4, 3 = 30


"If it worries you that much, I can lend you some of my money before you make the journey there, altough that is where my family lives and could support you more."


You, Edelweiss and a stallion get quite lucky with your cards. The other three ponies get outmatched very quickly and drunk even quicker.

Inside you see a bunch of crystal ponies playing cards, some of them are clearly drunk.
The zebra that was mentioned is sitting at a table near the fireplace with a crystal mare.
And finally, that unicorn pony with the strange leg is speaking to a crystal mare.

You order a mug of ale and join the table.
"Another stranger? Busy days…"
"Come on Edelweiss, deal those cards already!"
"Alright alright, calm down Sunny."
You are dealt a pair of cards.

"Are we mere stories to the zebrafolk down south? That's surprising to hear actually. Zebras aren't all that common up here but… I've met a few before."

"No, I wont accept any money either. You've done me a service-… no two services already. If you ever need my skills to craft something, I'll be your mare."


'1d10+2' lets take a look at my luck.

Roll #1 9 + 2 = 11


Carefully observe the zebra from across the inn. I can't be sure he isn't secretly a demon.

Roll #1 2 = 2




"Call me Gallant." I'll say with a calm poker face.


"I'll make sure to seek you out should I ever need your expertise."




"It's still quite a story.
Shining ponies living in crystal houses.
And lots of zebras are prone to…enhancing the truth, so it's hard to take those stories seriously.



He looks pretty shady to you. Anything with stripes like those just spells trouble. Who knows what kind of foul zebra magic he practices when nobody is looking?

"Good then. I'm leaving for Crystopolis tomorrow."

After a [1d10]/10 dinner with the mayor, you ask the innkeep for a room. He gives you a key and directs you to a vacant one. It's… humble, but homely nonetheless. This town isn't exactly wealthy, after all.

Roll #1 9, 2, 8, 8, 4 = 31 / Roll #2 7 = 7


Can I still faff a bit?


One of the mares and two of the stallions have good cards as well, but through careful bluffing and a large portion of luck, you manage to dominate most of the game, leaving the rest of the group drunk off their asses.


"I'll visit you as soon as I am there as well.
Good night."

Well, let's retreat to that room they provided and sleep.


"Are they? Well I suppose even ponies have tendencies to do so, so it's not exactly surprising. Some of the more gullible folk used to believe that zebras capture ponies and eat them. Absolutely ridiculous."

Your room is just as humble and simple. Just a bed, a small table and two chairs, a closet, a bowl with some water and a small chest are in here. The view is very nice though.


Wash my face and hooves, get undressed from my fancy clothes, and sit down at the window just to gaze out.
Maybe I'll paint this scenery from memory once I have my supplies for it.


I blacked out after a long, long night of drinking, didn't I?


I clear my throat.
"How ridiculous."


File: 1381609473785.jpg (362.85 KB, 600x398, btop-crop.jpg) ImgOps Exif Google

You sit down naked at the window staring at the outside. The north really is something else… there's nothing that can quite match those majestic mountains towering along the horizon. It may be a harsh and cold place, but its beauty is unmatched. Night is falling quickly, the sun casting its last rays off of the snow covering the mountains.

Let's say you did. Then, the drinks were free, so who is to blame you? As it turns out, the room is free too. Someone must have carried you here and laid you to rest after you collapsed.

"Don't worry, most ponies know better than to think such thoughts. Us crystal ponies are by no means racist towards other equines."


Rest my head on my hooves and just stare at the landscape dreamily.


Start rubbing my head and wake up…
I bet the lover is looking down on me.
Time to make amend.
Morning prayer!

Roll #1 3 = 3



Morning prayer! Oh… hey it's not morning yet! You just blacked out for a few hours! There's still hours left ahead of you before morning!


"I've noticed Crystal Ponies are very welcoming and generous towards guests. Could you tell me a bit more about the Empire?é



Roll #1 7 = 7


Let's head downstairs and see what's going on downstairs.


"Well… we have ties all the way back to the first ponies walking these lands. When the three pony tribes migrated to the south in the great Exodus we stayed up here and endured the cold. Eventually, our numbers grew big enough to form an empire of our own, much like Equestria. That said, our culture is the oldest of all and we take pride in our heritage."

You idly gaze out at the landscape for a while longer. As you are about to turn to head to bed, you catch something moving far into the distance through the air. … It's definitely big, whatever it may be.

There's only a few people left down here. You notice Gotti sitting at a table talking to a mare.


Squint a bit…
Can I make out what it is?
My empire for a set of binoculars!

Roll #1 5 = 5


Is she anypony I remember from yesterday?

Roll #1 9 = 9


"Fascinating. But when did crystal ponies wtart living in crystals?"


No, it's simply too far away. It's… coat or whatever seems to be white though. Before soon it disappears behind a mountain. How odd.

One of the mares and a stallion you rescued are sitting at the bar. They both look quite drunk.

"You'll only see those crystal buildings in the capital, I'm afraid. It's tradition dating all the way back to when it was first founded. It has something to do with magic I believe… but you'll need to find someone more knowledgeable on the subject of magic to give you the details on it. It looks magnificent though, that much I can tell you."


Maybe I'm seeing things.
I should rest.


"I look forward to seeing it sometime. You've been there before?"


That bed sure looks mighty inviting…

"Of course! That was back when I was barely an adult however. I think everypony should see Crystopolis at some point in their lifetimes. It's a sight you'll never forget. Edelweiss would love to go there as well, but the roads are far too dangerous for a long mare to travel. She'll just have to be patient."


Is it snuggly and comfy?

Roll #1 1 = 1


Stroll over there and sit beside her.
"How are you holding up?"


"This Sonnet and Angelite are going to Crystopolis soon as well, I think. Maybe we could provide some protection for her?"
Order moar wine.


Not at all. It's just a bunch of straw! Itchy as hell, slightly damp and very uncomfortable to sleep in.

They both look at you.
"Heyyyyy! 's our hero!"
"Come on, drink with us!"
The mare hoofs you a half filled mug of beer.
"Come on Sunny, give 'er more than that!"
The stallion scoots over and pours part of his own beer into your mug.

She perks up.
"They are? You would… do that for us? We can provide payment, of course."


Look sourly at the beer…
I've drank all night…
Oh well, what's one more mug gonna do to me?

Roll #1 8 - 2 = 6


Stand up, shake myself and…
I'll just sleep on the chair.


"We are going there anyway. It would be a small favor for your hospitality."


You're a big mare, you can take some more alcohol, no problem at all.
"Sssssooo… you gonna stay here in Winterheim now? We could use strong ponies like you."
"Yeah, that'd keep those bandits away for sure!"

Well it's uncomfortable as fuck. You probably wont have a good night's sleep tonight.

"Oh my… she'll be ecstatic to hear about this! Thank you! Don't you worry, she may be young but I've raised her well. Maybe one day she'll be elected as mayor of Winterheim herself."


I can try!
So sleep now.

Roll #1 3 = 3


"It must have been hard to raise her…"


"Sadly, our mission is too big.
We have sworn an oath, to protect all those within the empire.
Stopping in one place would be against it."


Continue playing until someone goes stonedrunk and fall!

Roll #1 9 = 9


rolling for sleep quality. '1d10'

Roll #1 10 = 10


Yeah… Those muscles are going to ache badly tomorrow.
We'll skip there when everyone else is ready.

"Being a mayor was easier than that, yes. But she's a good mare and I'm proud of how she's turning out. That's why I can't even express how grateful I am to all of you for bringing her back safely. If something were to happen to her… I'm not sure I'd survive."

"Well crap."
"I told you, Sunny… she's one of them paladins. They don't sit around! They go out there and do stuff!"

See >>493579
The newcomer absolutely dominated the table. They're all drunk right now, some of them went back to their homes while some others are talking to Sonnet at the bar. The crystal stallion who won the game has gone to bed as well.

You enjoy a nice, well-deserved slumber and dream of happier times. Your first action in the morning will receive a +1 bonus because of how shiny you are right now.


How…. nice.


Whelp thats fast I have hopes to play with them even longer but it looks like these guys doesnt get out more.
Now I wonder who that newcomer is.
Anyway go upstairs and see if I can find my quarters to get a shower then sleep.



Roll #1 1 = 1


Hmm, nice and refreshed.


Well sorry princess, but not all ponies are as rich as mommy and daddy.

We will skip to morning when everyone is ready.

There is no shower, just a bowl of cold water. Your 'bed' is made out of straw. Very itchy and slightly damp, making it a horrible place to sleep on. As such, you have an awful night with little to no rest.


"Forget about that now. Try to relax. It was a stressfull day but it's over now.é
Moar wine


"But indeed, it should be your own inner brilliance that keeps you safe, not your reliance on paladins!
For whenever you are in troubles, we will come."


I didn't want a bed lain with silk, just a… well, bed.


She's getting quite drunk and is loosening up considerably.
"Yes, yes, you're right. I have all I could ever ask for right here, good food, good drink, a nice fire and… pleasant company."
She smiles.

"I'll drink to that."
The stallion raises his mug.
"To paladins!"
"May they… uh… fight well and not die?"

At least it was free.


It's the thought that counts!


Okay, last drink before bed.

Roll #1 2 - 2 = 0


"The sentiment is the same. I must say I quite enjoy this town. I guess I have you to thank for that."


Exactly, you

You empty your mug and… fall off your chair and black out. The ground will be a fine bed, you slept on it today already!

"Winterheim isn't as nice as it used to be but… we get by. As long as there's zebras like you around saving ponies, all will be well."


Now let's see the sleep quality.

Roll #1 9 - 1 = 8


"With a mayor like you, I'm sure everything will turn out allright."


I what?


Ugghhh… what a shitty Inn.
Wash my face, get myself ready and try to be a bit more cheerful even though I am still groggy.

Roll #1 8 = 8


The innkeep moves you to your room for the second time that night and lays you to rest in your bed. Your night is sufficiently comfortable. You may experience a mild headache in the morning, but nothing too serious.

She blushes a bit.
"That's very kind of you to say. I just do my best to make our lives comfortable out here in this frozen land."

Woops. You're a polite lady, you don't complain.*

This town is poor, so naturally things aren't too comfortable.
Morning will be here when all are ready to skip.


"It's very different from my country. The nights must get pretty cold here sometimes.


This never happened in my old sorority!
Well, I can rest until morning comes.


"Oh yes… some nights, no matter how much logs you put on the fire, you stay cold. It's dreadful."


"In my country we're not used to much cold.


"It must be very cold for you then at night… Even colder because of how far away you are from home."


"You cannot imagine."


She subtly leans a bit more forward
"Perhaps… you would like me to help you keep warm?"


Nuzzle her.
"I feel warmer already~"


We can imagine the rest?
Let's go to the next day?


I think the others would like to.
Roll to see how things went.



Roll #1 9, 4, 10, 8, 4 = 35


Pretty well, it seems. You've gotten her quite drunk and gave her a good dicking, falling asleep with her in your embrace in her bed.

Morning comes.
The blazing Sun rises.
Life starts anew.
All of you wake up in your respective rooms. Some wake in the company of a lovely mare, others sitting uncomfortably on a wooden chair.
The shops have opened again and slowly but surely, the village comes back to life. Mares are chattering, stallions are working and children are playing. All is well again in Winterheim.


Time for a morning streching to get rid of any aches.

Roll #1 5 = 5


She was not too shabby.
Time to get up.


I yawn.
"What a morning."
Anyway are the others here in the Inn? Perhaps I should wait for them downstairs.


Okay, this time I'm sure it's morning.
Morning hymn to the Lover!

Roll #1 7 = 7


Yeah no. It's not really working out so well. Your muscles are aching pretty badly.

Mayor Glorious Jubilee wakes as well as you get up.
"Getting up so early?~"

To your knowledge, they are. The innkeep is serving breakfast downstairs. An assortment of pastries and other baked good are available.

What a good little paladin you are, paying respects to your goddess like that, as you were taught back in the academy.


Time to head downstairs!
Are my companions here already?


Wave to all three of them to sit next to me.

A good broth might be better. If not vegetable, a few chicken parts and some bread?


What an awful way to start a fresh day…
Make myself look presentable, dress up, and go downstairs.

"Good morning."


Ah shit…
"Hey there~. Did you sleep well?"


Go sit there.
"We are pleased to see you are still here."


You see… Helaine coming downstairs as well. Cassie is sitting on her own, munching on a piece of cake in a corner. She must have spent the night in the inn as well, with her home gone.

The ponies of the north are not carnivorous, unfortunately. Salads are available, however.

"Hmmm… yes. Tonight was a very hot night for once."
She chuckles.


"It would have been rude to reject such a generous offer of accomodations."


I nod at them.
"Morning, if you two would gladly eat with me I would like to have a proposition?"


"One of the perks of spreading Her Love, for sure.
Do you have plans for the following days?"
"A proposition?"


Perk my ears.
"Go on, I am intruiged."

"Not at the moment's notice, no."


Get up and get dressed.
"I must say I learned quite a few new things about Crystal culture."


Eat my salad.
"So where are you two going? If all of us are going in the same direction it might be a better idea of all of us stick together you know what I am saying? Travelling alone now is very dangerous specially with these bandits going around. Slavery and suffering, something I dont want to play with you know."


I smile.
"A very astute remark, miss. I personally would not oppose the idea."


"And I'm all the more informed about zebra culture~"
She gets up as well.
"But… I should go collect the reward for you and your friends. I'm sure they are eager to receive it. … I'll also need to inform my daughter that she will be leaving home for a little while."


"Don't let me stop you"

And then I go for breakfast.



"Sounds good."




Nod at him.
"Good morning."


I then try to swallow a mouthful of salad.
"Sho datsh good. *gulp*, its decided then since all of us has this 'synergy', we could make a good team. Well add some good costumes and some comics along the way then we can make a travelling band ahahaha!!"
"Well except you Angel… hmmm you really need a new dress. Something to please and distract the crowd so I can do magic more effectivly."

"Hello there and good morning." I nod to him.


I clear my throat.
"Whatever is it that you find wrong with my clothing? I assure you it is quality work and as enjoyable to wear as it is to look at."


"What is the current plan, ladies?"


"To bring justice to our land."


"We decided it would be wise to make a group, if you will, and continue traveling together."


"Well that as Sonnet has said and also to find safety in it." I sigh.
"And also to find a better Inn, or a home to call too now that you ask me."

"Well it needs to be more jaunty and frilly. The male's eye does not gaze on something they do not see you know." I wink/


"A most wise plan, I would be a fool to not take this opportunity. I also would like to tell you that the daughter of the mayor, Edelweiss would like to go to Crystopolis. I offered her our protection on the way"

"I'm sure Crystopolis will have all kinds of fancy inns."


I raise my head and nose.
"Thankfully, I need no such parlor tricks. I am a diplomat, and not a show-window."

"Oh? I do not mean to pry, but to what end does she want to travel there?"


"She would love to visit it."


"I see. She is more than welcome to join us in that case."


"Awww… come on. A little bit of cut here and there and you can solve things more 'diplomatically' speaking."

"She is coming with us?" I look at Gotti.


"You say you're a diplomat? Who do you work for, if I may be so bold?"



"I have the proper training, expertise and experience to handle any diplomatic problem without such ways, thank you."

"I work for my family, and for the Lover, of course."


"That sounds very viable, what can she offer on the table? Can she fend for herself? A good fighter? Entertain the crowd?" I wink.

"You're no fun. Hmnmph" I pout.


"She's coming with us as a traveler, she's paying us to protect her, not to fight bandits herself!"

"You come from a family of diplomats?"


I nod.
"Why yes, I do."

"I apologize if I cannot please you in that regard, but I assure you that you will not find my skills lacking."


"How fascinating. You must have let so many influential ponies."


"Ah, if she's paying then we are here to protect her."
I then put a hoof
"I put my trust in you Gotti." I nod.

I munch on the salad.
"Well you did put some of those bandits away. That is good, very good if you ask me."


Take her hoof into my hoof for a second.
"You're very welcome miss Helaine."
Let it go again


"On the contrary, I find it unfortunate that some of them did not concede, and died in their effort to attack us. I feel like their deaths could have been avoidable."

"I find this way of life quite exciting, yes."


I snicker at the dramatics
"Very good, I'll do my share of protecting Ms. Edelweis when the time comes."

"Well thats their problem not ours. If they are too stubborn then let them, you see how they met their faith. Too bad really but that is how they want it to end and cant be reasoned."
I then glower a little.
"Better them than those slaves if you ask me."


"Either way, let us hope that next time things will not have to end in violence."


I then drink some water before speaking.
"I agree, it will be better to all parties. Perhaps its also a plus if everyone goes away with a smile after a confrontation, though I got to say that rarely happens but it is not bad to hope after all."


"That's the point of diplomacy, to reach a conclusion everypony can agree to."


The mayor, flanked by her daughter who is carrying a bag, enters the inn. Looking around before spotting the group and walking over.
"Heroes, I have gone around the village and collected your reward in cash money. Though it doesn't even begin to do justice as a reward for your deeds, I hope it will help you on your further travels nonetheless. Winterheim is forever in your debt, don't you forget that."


"Why, thank you very much. Drinks are on me!"


I nod at her.
"I stick to my earlier statement. I cannot accept the money, I'm afraid."


"Nice." I grin.
I then look at Edelweis


She procures a bag of gold and sets it down on the table.
Gotti's wealth level was raised to 3.
Helaine's wealth level was raised to 4.
Sonnet's wealth level remains at 4, but is close to reaching 5.
Angelite decides to not accept any reward and remains at 5.

She smiles at you.
"Yes, that is very honorable of you. This simply means your friends will receive more. Now… Gotti offered to take my daughter along with you, as you will be travelling to Crystopolis next, correct?"


"That is correct, yes."


I count the money before stuffing it inside my hat.
"Thank you and yes all four of us decided to stick together as we travel so it means Edelweis will be in good hoof."


Edelweiss grins while her mother nods.
"Please do take good care of her, she… I couldn't bear seeing her get hurt. She's not a good fighter-"
"Mother, please."
The mayor frowns.
"You aren't fit for battle, Edelweiss. Don't be difficult about this."


"Being ready for battle is nothing but a state of mind and five years of strenous training."


"Then you might find it calming that I like to avoid confrontations myself, and will do everything within my reach to let us avoid any fights."


"Oh dont worry Mayor we will take care of her." I wink.


"Which my daughter hasn't. Her talents lie in administration, not battle."
Edelweiss scrunches.

"Good… that's a relief if there ever was one. Now… which road will you follow to get there? The Amber Road is not too far from here, which snakes its way through all major towns in the western part of the empire. Or… you could go through the Nether instead."
Clarification: the Nether is a network of connected old mineshafts deep underground.


What's happening?


I gulp and shudder.
"U.. underground? Will it be safe there?"


"We aim to protect and share Her Love with as many ponies as possible.
Going through the Nether would prevent us from doing so."


It's morning. The party is sitting downstairs in the inn eating breakfast and talking to the mayor after having received their rewards.


I'll head downstairs.


"The Amber Road, most likely."


"I like the sound of that Amber Road."


"Well… they are a lot safer ever since all diamond dog packs were banished from the realm when too many ponies started disappearing down there. If they are caught trespassing… they usually receive the death penalty. Harsh treatment, but it keeps them away and the Nether much safer."

"I see. Well the Amber road is well-traveled by trade caravans. Be careful though, this doesn't make it necessarily safer. You'll also be more exposed to the weather, so please take care not to get caught in a horrible blizzard…"

That zebra you saw yesterday is talking to the same mare as before. Their surrounded by a few other ponies though.
The unicorn mare with the strange leg is sitting at a table on her own.


"I'm sure we can handle the travel. It will not be my first time going to the crystal capital."


"I.. I see, so no bandits, marauders and huge toll fee's and such. That is good to hear." I smile.

"So do we travel above… or below."


"I advise that we travel above."


I nod.
"I.. I would like to see the sun above us if you ask me." I grin.


Edelweiss pipes up.
"It isn't? Have you been there before? I've never seen it!"


"Why yes, it is quite a nice sensation."

"I was born and raised there."


She clops her hooves together in excitement.
"That's so great! I can't wait till we get there!"


"I am sure you will find the city pleasant."


"It really is a nice city."


"I havent been there, is it a safe one? Is it a jolly one?"


I let out a refined chuckle.
"The safest and jolliest of cities, I assure you."


"When do we leave!? I just want to get out of this town as soon as possible!"
The mayor frowns slightly at hearing that and speaks up.
"What will you do once you get there? I'd like to see my daughter back some day, of course."
She chuckles and glances at Gotti.


"As soon as we have stocked up on supplies."


I'll go downstairs and get breakfast.


"I will visit some ponies, I think. Then we shall see where the path of the Lover takes us."


"Come to think of it, I'd also like to see that town once we travel. Well travel above ground that is."


That zebra you saw yesterday is talking to the same mare as before. Their surrounded by a few other ponies though.
The unicorn mare with the strange leg is sitting at a table on her own.
Breakfast consists of various pastries and baked goods, as well as salads consisting of both vegetables and fruits.

"Oh I just can't wait! I'm ready already! I'll… wait for you outside, alright?"
She trots off and leaves for the outside.

"Hm, very well then. Now, I need to get to work and organize the village after what happened the last few days. Good travels to you, heroes. I'm sure we'll meet again some day."
She turns and leaves the inn.


I'll grab a few food items and walk over to the large group.
"Excuse me, are you travelers?"


"Now, if you will excuse us."
Stand up and head outside.
Must look for a general store.




"Good day."

I turn to the newcomer.
"Ah, good day. Yes, we do plan to travel to the crystal capital."


"Oh! Excellent! May I come along?"


Turn to face himher?
"We are a paladin of Her Love."


"Well as long as you can handle yourself that is." I smiled at him smugly.
"And you may need a new dress… same as Angelite… " I mutter


Why don't you find out~
"We are?"

"I, ah, am not much of a fighter, but I can help heal wounds."


Sonnet Glory of the Capital."


"Ah if that is the case then you are welcome. My name's Helaine." I offer my hoof.


"Oh. Are you a noble?"

I shake it and smile.
"Pleased to meet you, miss."


"Of course you may. The more the merrier, or so the saying goes."

Give her a look, but don't say anything.


"We are a Paladin.
At one with Her Love. Thus, do not talk for ourselves alone."


I then point a hoof at Edelweis
"Oh also, we got to protect that little pony from anyone since she is a VIP of our group, plus we Gotti promised to the mayor to keep her daughter safe, so you know the drill. Two eyes open and all."

Look at her.


"Nothing at all."



"Ah alright."


"I believe some introductions are in order.
My name is Angelite. May I inquire about your name, mister…?"


"I'm Realgar. A healer."


"Magnificent. I admire all who mend the wounds of others, be it physical or mental."


"Thank you, miss."


"If you do not mind me prying, what brings you here?"


"Oh, you know, headed to the capitol for safety. Dangerous world these days."


"Sadly, it is. You needn't worry now. I am glad you decided to join us."


I smile back.


The party, with the exception of Angelite, has accepted their rewards from the mayor for aiding the town and saving her daughter from the clutches of a group of bandits. They find themselves alone in the inn, having finished breakfast already. Edelweiss has informed them that she will be waiting on them outside. The mayor has taken her leave as well.


Stand up and look serious at the others.
"It is time we moved. The day won't be young forever!"


"I agree. If you would be as kind as to take lead."


Oh yes I can.
Off to the entrance!


I stretch.
"Yes yes, it appears to be like that."

Follow her outside


Would it be rude to follow these ponies? Perhaps they could sue the help.





You leave the inn without paying for your meal, which is fine because it was free anyway!
It's a relatively clear day outside. Only a few clouds up in the sky and a slight breeze blowing through the small street. Things are certainly busier than yesterday. Several of the shops have opened up again, including Fletcher's workshop.
Edelweiss is standing near the edge of the village looking over a map.
Cassie seems to have acquired a small cart to transport her last belongings in and is in the process of hooking herself up to it.

You remember playing cards against one of them last evening, the pegasus mare seen here >>494520


Meet up with Edelweiss.
"Marking the best path?"


I'll catch up to you.
"So, where are you heading to next?"


"Good morning. We are headed towards the the Crystal Capital."

Walk over to Cassie.
"Will you travel with us, if you do not mind me asking?"


Look around a bit while sticking with my friends, Is Cassie fine?

"eh?" I look at him.


"Ah, the capital? A lovely place really. "
at your second comment I pause
"Are you looking for more companions? Your group seems quite large already."
"Good day, I believe you were playing cards last night? I am Gallant Striker."


"There is a certain safety in numbers, and some additional company is always appreciated."


"Another traveler headed for the capital?
We are Sonnet Glory, of Her Love.
You are welcome to join us. All of us."


She nods but doesn't look up from her map.
"Yes… the Amber road is south of here, so we'll need to walk through the wilderness for the first part of the trip. From there we'll encounter a fork in the road, one way leading to Brilliance, the other to Ponestadt. Crystopolis lies south of both these towns. We'll need to decide which path to take."

"That depends, are you going through the Nether? It'd be safer to travel together in that case. And before you leave… I think I'll need that letter of recommendation from you."

Being able to carry her bags in a cart certainly helps. It's a lot less weight on her shoulders.


I smile and shake his hand
"Helaine, and looks like we did play one time. How are you? And yes my and my friends are going to the capital."



"Which one goes through the most villages?"


"Why not take the Amber Road?"
Is it possible that I wrote it off-screen?


I nod at Sonnet's speech with mild approval.
"Well, If its your safety you fear, then I shall accompany you at least to the capital."
"I am doing well. The light has followed me on this journey so far."


"Perhaps we should go through Brilliance."


"Our safety?
Don't worry for that none. You are traveling with a paladin of Her Love now!"


"Light? What do you mean?" I look at him confused.

"We are taking the Amber road right? Not the underground one." I scrunched


I smile.
"I am sure I can safely talk in the name of the group that we are thankful then. I personally am not much of a combatant. My name is Angelite. A pleasure to meet you."


"Quite right, yes, the Amber Road was our choice."


Mine too.
Amber Road.


"They are the same. The Amber road connects towns with other towns and is used as a trade route. You wont find villages like Winterheim hooked up to it. I guess the only difference there is is that Brilliance is a very large town while Ponestadt is smaller. Still a lot bigger than Winterheim though!"
She snickers a bit.

Sure, you can just give it to her then.
"Well it's colder and more exposed to the weather, for one. And more dangerous alone in my opinion."

"I heard it's a very wealthy city, with lots of gem mines and stuff!"


"I guess we should make way for Brilliance then.
The bigger, the more helpful we can be!"


Give her the letter with a smile then.
"You need not travel alone. You are more than welcome to join our entourage."


Approach CassieCassie is the blacksmith with the destroyed golem right?
"So will you come with us?"


"The pleasure is mine I'm certain Angelite."
"Should be safe enough to go by there."
"The light is what blesses my path, allows me to see clearly, both where my hooves walk and where my weapon lands."


"Welcome to the team, Mister Gallant."


I frown a bit at first before giving him a sultry smile.
"Ah I see, so the light shows the way huh? Lets hope that light wont get in the way and blind you as you strike."
"Anyway you are much welcome."


"Alright then! We'll need to take the southwest path in that case."
She rolls up her map and puts it in her bag.
"Ready for adventure when you are!"

She looks over at the rest of the party for a moment.
"… Sure. Why not?"

"I will, it's colder than the Nether, but at least I wont be on my own this way. To be fair, those mineshafts kind of creep me out anyway."

"Sure it will be, what could possibly go wrong right? With a group this big, we'll be able to handle anything!"


Look back towards my companions.
Are they ready?


"Grand! Why make the journey on your own if you could do it with friends?"


I shiver a bit.
"Good decision Cassie, you can stick with us as much as you like."


I'll make sure my equipment is ready.


Just smile at that. "You remind me of an old friend of mine.."
"Thank you."
I nod to her "Ready when the rest of you are then."


Edelweiss is bursting with anticipation and Cassie is all hooked up to her cart and ready.

She cracks a small smile.
"Heh, yeah."

"Crystopolis is not next door, so I guess you're stuck with me for a while. Don't worry, I don't snore."

You're as ready as you'll ever be. Your reward is nicely secured in your bags, far away from any grabby hooves.


Hehe, got your reward right here.


"Now, we can continue conversing on the road. The capital is a long way ahead."


I giggle a bit
"Really? Well at least my presence will be a little reminder of home, you know." I shrug.

"Eehh.. an uncouth thing if you ask me." I snort.


Put me on autopilot
Ready to go!


"Right, let's get this caravan moving."
Cassie pulls her cart ahead and gets moving out of the village.
Edelweiss prances after her.


"Is it? Maybe it is. I'm not an expert on that sort of stuff."


"Reminders of home can be hard ones Miss, but I appreciate the gesture in any case."


Follow the caravan.


Follow, and stick to somewhere around the middle. It's the safest place to be for a diplomat such as I.


I lean next to Cassie and give her a serious stare.
"If you want a decent stallion, it is a 'no no' to snore next to them if you want them to stick with you. Well unless if you are gunning for a diamond dog that is."

"Haha, alright lets go then shall we?"

Follow the caravan.


The party gets moving in a group, leaving the village of Winterheim behind them and following the small dirt path south. As the village disappears from sight behind the pine trees, things get very quiet. The only thing to be heard are the hooftsteps from the party in the snow and the occasional creaking from one of Cassie's cart's wheels. This far up north, the snow covers just about everything. Even the road is hard to see and follow at times.


Keep walking.
"There is a certain serenity and beauty to this landscape, is there not?"


Bullshit, I bet my attuned zebra senses can easily see where the road is.

"Too cold for my tastes. I wish I was back in that warm inn again."

Roll #1 8 + 2 = 10


"I assure you that the capital will have more than enough warm places to visit and stay at, Mister Gotti."


Perhaps hum a tune to remove the monotomous feel.

"I could sing too if you guys like."

Roll #1 6 + 2 = 8



Roll #1 3 = 3


I smile at the snow "Nice weather."


"A diamond dog?"
She looks disgusted at the very idea.
"They're not even allowed in the Empire. They weren't even all that welcome back in Equestria."

Oh yeah, you got this. The road is easy too follow, you just need to pay attention to the rocks marking it! And that pony lying on the ground covered under a light layer of snow just off the road!

Edelweiss smiles at the tune.
"Oh, you're a bard? That's so great!"


"I certainly hope s-"

"Wait, there's somepony laying there!"
Grab my weapon and check it out '1d10+2'

Roll #1 6 + 2 = 8


I stop and perk up.


"Trust me, they are really uncouth creatures, never satisfied at anything nor will throw a bone at you even if you've done your best. You dont want to get into their business." I frown a bit.


"Why yes I am, I am sort of a bard extraordanaire but not yet fully pledge. Adequate is the right word I might say but I am a good singer and a talented magician, already proven my works from several cities to which I am proud off." I smile before looking at the road.

"H… hey. thats someone isnt it?" I look at the pony lying on the ground and approach it.


A crystal pony mare, obviously been dead for hours. She's wearing fur armor and carrying some saddlebags. Her eyes are closed.

"You're right, I don't."


I frown.
"Can you tell what happened to this unfortunate soul?"


I look a bit sad "Does she have something on her? A name? A way to tell her family?"
'1d10' check her for these things.

Roll #1 9 = 9


Does she have any wounds? What is inside her Saddlebag?

Roll #1 10 = 10


"Poor girl."
Since everyone else has checked already, I'll wait.


Aside from her armor, she's wearing a pendant with a crystal attached to it. You figure it must be some kind of magical catalyst, indicating that this mare was a magic user of sorts.
Inside her saddlebags, you find a bottle of beer, a dagger, a piece of charcoal, a small gem fragment and a folded up piece of paper with some writing on it.

See above.
She has some light bruises and minor wounds on her body, but nothing seemingly lethal. Judging by her pupils, you can tell that this mare died to some sort of poison.


Are there any tracks in the snow or just hers? '1d10+2'

Roll #1 4 + 2 = 6


I snort a bit and nod at Gallant.
"I've seen this kind of eyes before. Something has poisoned her, dont take anything from her food or drinks."

I then look at the others.
"She died of poisoning of some sort."


"Is there anything that suggest who she was or where she was headed?"


Just hers. The snow covered them slightly as well. You can only assume that this mare was attempting to reach Winterheim before she died. You've only been on the road for little over an hour, so she got quite close.
Edelweiss looks a little sad too at the sight.
"That poor pony…"

Cassie unhooks herself from her cart and walks over.
"Poison? Damn, sure wish I had a medical golem right now. Maybe I could have determined what kind of poison."


check the paper.


"Not much, but she is a magician. She has a catalyst. She also loves her booze."

"Yes that could really help if you ask me. Should we turn back and carry her? I mean that is the right thing to do as of now."


I'll try to cover that corpse with some cloth or my jacket if there's nothing else.
Might scare the less experienced ponies among us.


It's a letter written with ink that must have been directed at this mare. It reads:


I've told you time and time again to be patient about this matter. We can't afford any mistakes here or we're fucked, understood? Now, I'm going to head over to Brilliance to get some better equipment to deal with this little problem of ours, so you're going to have to hold the fort down in Pinewood cove. If you can't find your way back there, don't worry, I've drawn a simple map on the backside of this letter. Make sure nopony leaves or enters that place. Kill them if need be, I don't give a damn.
And for God's sake, be patient for once. You'll just get your ass killed if you head in deeper on your own.
- S.

"Carry her where? Winterheim is over an hour away? Brilliance is still real far off as well."


"I see."

"If nothing else, she should be buried."


I cough a bit and check the back "This note indicates that she was headed to Pinewood cove, and that a contact of hers was in headed to Brilliance."


File: 1381949565123.png (15.77 KB, 639x504, map_crystalquest.png) ImgOps Google

Edelweiss nods in agreement.
"Yes, she deserves that much. Nopony deserves to lie out here in the open."

There's a crudely drawn map on the backside.


I scratch my head.
"It is the proper form, we cant leave her body to rot on the side of the street you know." I frown.
"If not we can bury her here but I really dont like the idea of leaving her here. I mean… you know." I scrucnh.

"Pine wood cove?" I look at Edelwies and Cassie if they've heard of it.


"This map looks accurate enough to follow if you want, but the note makes it sound like a bandit's hide out."
Show you the note and the map. "There is a map."


"Ah! There it is."

"She has a map?"


"Yes, it's the least we can do."
Find a nice spot of road and start digging '1d10'

Roll #1 9 = 9


Nod sadly.


"I can offer a prayer if you like. I don't see anything indicating her religion, so perhaps one of my own will suffice?"


"Alright, its decided then." I frown.
"I just hope we know her name."

"Does the note say anything about her? Does she have a name?"


Cassie just shrugs.
"Lots of caves around here in all these mountains."
Edelweiss scratches her head with a hoof.
"Uh… I think that cave used to be used to bury miners in whom couldn't afford a grave. It's near the lake south of here."

Edelweiss walks over.
"More bandits? Is there a name for this pony?"

You start digging a hole in the middle of a clearing, just off the road and out of reach of any tree roots. The ground is hard, but your willpower is harder. Before soon, you have a sufficiently large grave to lay the mare to rest in.


"Just a single letter: E."


show him the note.


"A prayer is a good idea, Mister Gallant."

"I do not think she was one of the bandits we encountered."


"A respectful prayer is all the dead ask."

"I suppose that will have to do."
Carve an E An unknown soul. May she rest in peace in the nearby tree.


"At least that is something."

"After this we might be on our way."
I then I look at the others.
"Unless they took interest of the letter, I say we stick to the plan so we dont get bogged down by the weather."


"E? Well that's not much help."
She scrunches.

"I hope not… what if they are planning another attack?"


"Then they need to be stopped. Hopefully diplomatically."


Take a deep breath and nod.
"May the light forgive your past sins, and accept your soul into the next stage of your life. Rest well Miss E."


Cassie walks back over to her cart and hooks herself up again.
"So we're taking a detour then?"

Edelweiss puts the mare's saddlebag in the grave with her and whispers a prayer of her own.


"Possibly. I would not like if anypony else got hurt if we had a chance to prevent that from happening."


"At least his can be taken as a warning, that something big was going down and there may be bandits working nearby."


"Alright then, but don't expect me to be of much help in a fight… if it even comes to that."

"Yes… We should cover her."
She starts to move over dirt, rocks and gravel on top of the mare, slowly covering her in her grave.


"Of course. You can steer clear of any fight or danger we might try to handle."


I just stare on as they do their job.
"I recommend we stick to the plan and continue on after we bury her. We have no time to stand idly here, not with the weather and the uncertainty of this road has been made clear."


help finish covering her.


"Well, let's get a move on then. Find this 'cave' that was mentioned."
Edelweiss finishes covering the mare and walks back over the road as well.


I nod.
"Well said."

"Let us hope they will be reasonable."


I look at Edelweis.
"Cave?! No no no, we go and follow the road until we hit another town thats the plan right?"



"I doubt they will be reasonable, since the note indicated intruders should be killed. "


Shake my head.
"We simply cannot allow this threat to persist."


"I agree."


"But… what if they attack Winterheim again?"

The group gets moving again, intent on meeting the Amber road down south. The mood has dampened a little after the last encounter, but the journey continues. Another hour passes as the party finally comes across the Amber road. A paced road marked with rocks marking the sides, covered in only a thin layer of snow.
Up ahead, you see a lake and a fork in the road.


Nod "As long as we are not putting those unable to fight at risk, I agree with going to the cave."


A paved road rather.


I put a hoof on my head and snicker a bit.
"Oh my, just one thing leads to another. You see this is not we have talked about. We stick together to the road and thats it. We are not here to go and rouse any trouble you see, specially not if we got someone like her involved." I point at Edelweis.

"As Gallant Striker has said, who-ever, or 'whatever' poisoned her will not be reasonable. I dont like this idea of us going snooping around someone's business, its not our fight."

"Who shall, didnt we drive those slavers off?"


"Well yes, but that doesn't stop them from trying again!"


"This is something we must do for the greater good, Miss Helaine. If you do not want to be part of it, feel free to stay safe with those who do not wish to or cannot help."


"Not your fight."
Stand up and embrace my gauntlets.
"It is our duty to protect and serve.
And if none of you will help because of the dangers, we will not hold it against you.
But fear not, for Her Love will see you!"


"I simply do not wish to put anyone in danger. Perhaps we should escort the others to Brilliance and return to this cove once they are safe?"


"The track might grow cold."


"We dont know! Besides this is not what the agreement has been said. The agreemend is that we stick to the road and thats it, not hunting bandits or such." I scrunched.

"Greater good my ass, we are here to stick to the road and you and the others go and try to be heroes again. I've no plan to travel from the fringes of Equestria and suddenly die here because of recklessness."

I just grit my teeth seeing this fanaticism in front of me.
"I hope her love can save you once you are choking on a… Bah." I just raise a hoof in dismissal.

"There, see. That is a better idea you know."


Raise a brow at her outburst, but say nothing.


"It is too big of a derail. I advise that those who cannot help in the matter stay a bit behind."

"As I said, Miss Helaine, you are not forced to join us in this endeavor."


"Are you okay?"


"Oh, the map said something about Lakeside Lodge! I think that's a traveler's cabin! If you're that worried, we could rest there and wait for you all to return."


"So the plan is to camp here I take it while you and the others go off?" I stare at her.

I just stare at him scrunching but say nothing.


I smile
"That would put my heart at ease if you would."


I sigh.
"That sounds reasonable, we dont want to stick longer here specially with the snow and all."


"I do not wish to endanger you, Miss Helaine.
And that Lodge will be suitable for your rest, I am sure."


She looks over to the lake, scanning the horizon.
"… There! I see it!"


"Ah yes there it is." I wipe my brow.
"Lets go there for a rest or two so we can decide better."

"Yes it will be, but I still do not approve of this action of ours." I frown.


"I understand, but I do not wish to do this out of selfish reasons."


The group moves towards the lake and before soon reaches the lodge. It's rather small, but cozy enough.
Cassie unhooks herself from her cart.
"There's lots of these alongside the roads up north. They're not as comfortable as inns and often not in use, but it sure as heck beats sleeping outside."
Edelweiss opens up the door of the lodge and heads inside. There's a lovely view on the lake from here, a fireplace, some bedrolls, a few cupboards and a table with some chairs.


"It is much better than being out in the open, yes."
Stay outside a bit and look at the scenery…. it was a mistake not to bring my art supplies.


Look for signs of recent travelers. '1d10+2'
Be right back

Roll #1 6 + 2 = 8


I relax on one side and lay down my gear.
"Yes this is more like it."

"So what is the plan? Who shall go and who shall not?"
I then look at the lake then back.
"It is most likely decided that I Edelweis wont go with this."


Edelweiss starts a fire and puts some logs on.
"Well, nopony seems to be using it right now, so I think we're pretty safe here."
It certainly was. The lake is partially frozen over and provides a nice contrast to all the mountains and trees surrounding it. That water must be painfully cold.

Nobody must have been here today at least. Aside from that, it's hard to judge just how long ago someone was here.


I wasn't planning a swim… and I could always paint from memory!

"I certainly seems so, not to mention that the scenery is astounding as well."

"Anypony who volunteers is welcome. I for one will go for sure."


"It is Our duty to shed light on this."


Cassie plops down near the fire.
"Sorry, I'm no fighter. Not anymore."
Edelweiss shakes her head as well.
"I'd love to help but… I'd probably just get in your way."


"So that makes two to two."
I crossed my hoof.
"I will come with you if Gotti and Gallant Striker sits this down but if both of them volunteer to accompany you two then I will stay here and guard Cassie and Edelweis. Agreed?"


"Sounds reasonable, yes."


So what shall it be? Who is going, who is staying?


I am going.


"I am staying." I nod




I'm going.


Edelweiss smiles at you.
"Well, we'll have the fire to keep us company and we're sheltered from the weather and wildlife. I think we'll be able to relax while they're gone."

Meanwhile, Cassie takes out an iron sword from her bags and lies it down next to her.
"If not, I'll still have my magic and this sword to defend myself."

Party of three. Gallant will probably come along as well.
Looking on the map, Pinewood cove is a little more south from here. At the foot of one of those mountains.


Indeed, I will go to the cove.


"this won't take long."
Time to go there '1d10'

Roll #1 9 = 9


Follow the zebra.
"Once again I should remind you all, avoid violence as long as possible, and let me do the negotiations."


I nod slowly. "Of course miss Angelite."


You lead the party outside and head south. After a bit of looking and poking around, you pinpoint the entrance of the cave about fifteen minutes from the lodge. You briefly wonder why the now dead mare didn't just go to the lodge herself instead of going to Winterheim, but dismiss the thought quickly.

There's a small camp next to the entrance of the cave. Seems completely deserted. The campfire is long gone.


I scrunched as I furrow my brows.
"They are fools to go. This is not part of the plan you know."
Take out some bread and cheese from my hat to eat.
"Dont worry I can protect myself and you two to an extent. I am a bit of survivor you know." I smiled with confidence.


Any clues near the camp?
Say, how many ponies were here?

Roll #1 1 = 1


'1d10' look for clues.

Roll #1 2 = 2


Look for any sort of sign of ponies around '1d10+2'

Roll #1 7 + 2 = 9


Edelweiss shakes her head.
"I'm glad they're investigating it. Can't be too careful after what happened to us before."
Cassie yawns and rests her head on the floor.
"If it prevents other workshops burning down like mine, it's good they're going in there, yeah."

You slip on a bit of ice on the ground and fall face-first into a pile of snow in a very unladylike manner.

You're too distracted by Angelite's very ungraceful fall right now.

None are outside. You can't spot any recent tracks either.


I'll look inside then. '1d10+2'
If I'm not too distracted by Angelite

Roll #1 7 + 2 = 9


"Oh please allow me to help you." Offer Angelite a hoof up.


"Hmmmphh.." I scrunched then look out of the window to survey the area.

"If they dont show their asses here by morning, I will go out and look for them. I would advise you two bolt and run back to Winterhelm if the worse came to worse got it?"

Roll #1 8 = 8


Keep watch outside.

"Are you hurt, Angelite?"

Roll #1 3 = 3



I rub my muzzle, then accept the hoof.
"I apologize for that, it is quite slippery here and I was not paying attention…"


"It could happen to anypony." I assure you.


"Oh, but I was taught never to lose my poise, you see…"
Shake my head.
"Let us concentrate on more important matters at hoof."


The entrance is rather dark, but further ahead you see faint light coming from deeper into the cave.

The valley you are in is very peaceful and quiet. The lake is very pretty too, reflecting the rays of the sun almost reaching its highest point.
"Got it!"

Dead silence.


I nod to my two lovely lady friends and say softly.
"There's something in here."


"Something or someponies?"


I'll try to walk inside the entrance.


"I can't see. I'll go a bit closer."
Take a look silently '1d10+2'

Roll #1 8 + 2 = 10


"Don't lower your guard!"


Raise my hoof to my mouth.


Stay behind him.


A very cavernous area, typical for caves!
There's icicles of all sizes on the ceiling, better not make those fall down.

You head in deeper…
Step by step…
The passage narrows as you advance…
Well it's a torch on the wall. Nothing more. Further ahead, you see another torch. No sign of life other than that… yet.


I follow as well.
"Anything in sight?"


"Seems like somepony's been here recently."
Go further inside the cave.


keep moving inside, quietly. Can I see anything moving in here? '1d10'

Roll #1 7 = 7


One cant be too careful specially near an incident of death like that . I keep watch on the house from the window.
"Say how far are we from the capital?" I look at them.


You follow the shaft deeper into the mountain. You seem to be going downwards slowly as well.
Eventually, the cave grows bigger again, and you find yourself standing on a overpass.
Below you, there's a bunch of stuff.
Several benches lined up in rows in front of what looks like an altar. Behind the altar stands a… shrine? You're not sure what kind of shrine. It's shaped like a black bell. There's blood on the altar though and a few bones as well. You see a robed pony sitting on a chair near a table located in the corner of this 'room'. He or she is hunched over some kind of old tome, too busy reading to even notice you standing on the overpass.

You can either jump down into the room, or continue along the overpass and find a different way down.

"Pretty far. We still have to pass by Brilliance first! The Amber route connects all the major towns to each other, you see. It's useful to transport gems and whatnot on!"


"This is the perfect place to jump into that pony's neck" I whisper.


"I think we should find a way down before announcing our presence!"


"That is not very diplomatic at all."


"We can talk to him after that." I offer.


I gulp and nods keeping an eye out.


"That is still not very diplomatic. It might seem that we are pressuring him into answering."


"He's got blood on that latar over there. I don't think he'll be open to negotiation. He might try to put a spell on us if we let him speak."


"How is Brilliance btw? Is it a good place?" I smile


"…he might. He might not. We cannot judge from first glance."


"So you want to wait and see if he puts a spell on us???"


"If it is that concerning to you, I can volunteer to try and speak. Should he try and use magic on me, you can intervene to prevent harm."


"Okay, wait."
I put plug my ear with some wax and then nod to Angelite.


Cassie lifts up her head to look at you.
"I passed through Brilliance a few years back, it seemed like a nice city to me."
Edelweiss nods.
"It's one of the richest and most prosperous cities in the north. There's massive gem mines providing tons of gems every day! From what I hear, it's not as big as the capital, but they still have their own terraforming crystal that can change the weather!"


Nod back.
Now… to find a way down.
Jumping down wouldn't be very ladylike, so continue along the overpass to find a way down.


My eyes glitter a bit.
"Terraforming? Change the weather you say?" I look at Edelweis.
"Say can they change the weather in desert or dry environment? How about underground?"


You advance on the overpass until it eventually, ends, leading into another cave that pierces deeper into the mountain. However, there is a wooden construct here that can be used to walk down to the ground level.

"Yup! The capital has the crystal heart which does all kinds of stuff aside from changing the climate! Brilliance just has a powerful crystal enchanted with weather altering spells. I hear it makes the climate almost as temperate as Equestria! … I don't know about underground areas though."


Walk down then!
And approach the pony, but still keep a fair distance.


You walk up to the pony, but he is still hunched over his old tome, carefully reading it.


I'm observing from above.


"Well that is something I'd like to see. I mean if it really works… I mean I can bring one to my homeland and help." I smile sadly.
"And get some profit out of it of course."


Clear my throat.
"Excuse me for bothering you, good sir, and I apologize for interrupting your work, but I'd like to take some of your time. I am Angelite, a diplomat from the Crystal Capital. Would you be so kind as to introduce yourself and explain what this cave operation is about?"
Smooth Talker

Roll #1 7 + 2 = 9


Follow after Angelite.


"They're extremely expensive though, only a few towns in the North can afford one! Brilliance is one of those few, thanks to how successful its mines are."

He perks up and turns around, looking you over. He's an older crystal stallion, his mane starting to show streaks of grey.
"You, heretic, are intruding on these sacred grounds blessed by Grogar Himself. You do not belong here and should leave at once before we unleash the undead on you."


"There is no need to do such a thing. Harming other ponies is not the way one should live by. Do you not agree?"
Good Word.

Roll #1 1 = 1


I close my arms together.
"Hmmm…. thats a hurdle. But learning this information is very very valuable. I mean if someone from the badlands or even south of macintosh hills are able to learn about this new magic then.. then perhaps they can grow crops in a more bountiful way. No more raiding or exploiting the little folks you know what I mean." I Scrucnhed.


He snarls at you.
"Little fool! Your impudence shall cost you dearly!"
He powers up a spell.
"Your blood will flow freely upon the altar during tonight's sermon. You shall make for a fine sacrifice to Grogar!"
The room goes completely dark, even the candles and torched seem to lose a lot of their light.
You hear some kind of… rattling sound coming from all around you.
Everyone roll.


rolling '1d10'

Roll #1 10 = 10


Oh dear

Roll #1 10 = 10



Roll #1 1 = 1


She shrugs.
"I guess. To my knowledge the alicorns haven't showed any interest in them though."

You're seemingly safe on top of the overpass. From up here, you see several pony skeletons clawing their way out of the ground, fueled with black magic.

You too see the skeletons even in this unnatural darkness surrounding you. One of them brandishes a sword and charges at you, but you easily dodge it. The skeleton's momentum causes it to fall and break back to pieces… then immediately assembles itself again and rises back to its hooves.

A boney arrow strikes you very painfully into your shoulder. You have no idea what's going on and you're helpless.


'1d10' get back up.

Roll #1 1 = 1


Seems like I'm going to have to jump sword first '1d10' right on the old pony.

Roll #1 5 = 5


This is quite a situation…
Keep the skeletons at bay with my walking stick.
"I am afraid this did not work out how I thought it would!"

Roll #1 7 = 7


The arrow has lodged itself quite deeply, making it hurt like hell.
While you're writhing in pain, another arrow strikes you in the leg. You're still helpless and even more hurt now.

You jump down but the pony manages to dodge you at the last moment. He hisses at you and conjures an ethereal dagger.
"More bodies to sacrifice, the altar will be drenched tonight. This pleases Grogar!"

You swipe at one of the skeletons with your cane, making it stumble slightly.

Gallant: Helpless / 3 wounds


I laugh before scrucnhing.
"Why am I not surprised? They dont show any interest outside of their borders, all those so called alicorns care about is their nobility, their students and whats not. They care little about the suffering of others."
"Caring little about the suffering of others, heh… that is one thing they might have unintentionally taught me" I smile as I looked outside the window to survey the area.

Roll #1 6 = 6


'1d10' try to get up, remove the arrows.
"By the light.."

Roll #1 3 = 3


"You underestimate us, heathen!"
Time for the Slam '1d10'

Roll #1 9 = 9


Heal Gallant!

Roll #1 4 + 2 = 6


Keep them off of me and Gotti.
"I am afraid the negotiations have gone sour, but do not let that keep us down!"
Inspire my companions

Roll #1 7 = 7


"You don't sound like you're a big fan of your princesses…"

Cassie shrugs at this.
"Can't say I'm too hot on them either. I don't dislike them or anything, but I don't particularly care for their governing either."

Nothing catches your eye. Everything seems peaceful.

It pains you too much. You're bleeding… you're muscles are protesting too much to stand up!

You quickly charge in before the old pony has a chance to continue, slamming into him at full force. He gets thrown backwards by the impact and his dagger disappears into thin air.
"I will relish on making you squeal like a piglet while I cut you up!"

Thankfully for him, your healing spell removes the arrows and closes the wounds. He now has the strength to stand up again.

You've got this in the bag, these skeletons aren't as tough as living ponies! Just stand together and you can overcome this small obstacle!

Gallant 5/3

+1 to all party rolls next turn.


Punish the heaten for his crimes!
Empower weapons, smash him!

Roll #1 7 + 4 = 11


Keep the skeletons at bay still!

Roll #1 6 = 6


Nod to Sonnet and
'1d10+2' use my sword to cut down down this loud mouth.

Roll #1 1 + 2 = 3


"Time for the Crazy Gazelle."
My patented move.
Jump up and down fast while battering him with my mace from all sides '1d10'

Roll #1 4 = 4


Continue my watch as Iook outside the window. I wonder what those fools have got themselves into.

"I've grown up outside of Equestria's borders. I really am not accustomed to… all this peace. Out there you will not only contend with your neighbors, but you also have to contend with petty thieves, warlords, bandits, thugs, not to mention dragons and the bad weather. To be honest, this place is more peaceful than where I come from."


You charge your armored hooves with religious fury and smash the old necromancer's gut while he's down.
He starts coughing up blood and gurgles as he chokes on it.

With a few ladylike strokes of your cane, you manage to keep them from harming you.

This is it. Finally your time has come to show this evil pony your righteous fury. You charge in and… another arrow hits you in the leg. You fall and tumble to the ground, in great pain again.

Before you can charge in, a skeleton jumps in the way and takes the hit for its master.

Cassie gets up.
"Don't let all this peaceful scenery lull you into a false sense of security. The North can be a real harsh place."

Gallant: Helpless / 3 wounds




'1d10+3', heal

Roll #1 7 + 3 = 10


I look at Cassie.
"What do you mean by that? Well I know that there are those bandits going around capturing ponies but it is not that bad considering the south beyond the borders are patrolled by dragons, wyverns and foul creatures who prey on anything that are vulnerable."


"Oh there's dragons up here too. You see crystal ponies-"
She nods at Edelweiss.
"-like their gems just as much as dragons do. Add that to the fact that they're very shiny looking themselves most of the time and… you've got yourself a tasty looking target for a dragon."
Edelweiss appears a bit embarrassed and looks away.



I look at Edelweis.
"Well come to think of it. a crystal pony's appearance is enough to entice a dragon to either keep them as part of their hoard or well.. as you say perhaps a tasty meal." I gulp.


Roll #1 2 = 2


Unobservant as shit.

Edelweiss nods.
"Dragons are one of our biggest natural enemies. Just like diamond dogs and changelings-"
Cassie perks up, interrupting Edelweiss' speech and fixing the window with a stare.
"… I just saw something outside."
She points a hoof.
"A shadow just moved into that bush. Somepony is out there."


I lower my head and peek outside the window
"Are you sure? I am looking outside for quite a while and didnt see anything."

Roll #1 5 = 5


She gets up with an annoyed expression and floats up her sword to her side.
"Of course I'm sure, a shadow moved right there from behind that tree into that bush. This better not be bandits again…"
You don't see anything out of the ordinary. You're looking out of the south window, which looks out over the lake and its surroundings. There's plenty of trees and bushes surrounding the lake, which would make for decent cover.
Edelweiss gets up and looks out as well.
"I-I don't see anything!"


I smart my eyes and stand up.
"You two, stay inside. I'll go and look outside a bit. Got that?"

I began to ready my weapons and stand on the door.
"In case something came inside, just shout and I will come."


"Alright… my telekinesis still packs a pretty solid punch, so when you're in trouble, just shout and I'll try to help."
Cassie lays low on the floor, sword and horn at the ready to deter any intruders.
Edelweiss just backs into a corner.


With that I ready my crossbow and began to step outside to have a look. Anything that caught my eye?

Roll #1 1 = 1


You open the door and step outside. Everything seems normal out here…
You advance and circle around the lodge to the bushes where Cassie saw movement. After a bit of searching and walking around in said bushes, you still find nothing. That is, until you are seized in a tight grip from behind by someone and a dagger gets held to your throat as he disarms your crossbow and lets it fall to the snowy ground with a soft thud.
"Make one sound and you're dead, understood?"


I gulp and keep quiet.
I look a bit around, what is it?


It's hard to see seeing how you are locked in a tight grip and he is right behind you.
"Your valuables please."
He fumbles around a bit, grabs your dagger and tosses it away from you as well.


"I have nothing of value. Only my weapons and a cloak as you can see." I grit my teeth.
"Who are you and what do you want? Are there more of you around?"


"You're a traveler, you must have some coin on you."
He ignores your questions, obviously not interested in enlightening you.
"With a nice hat like that, you must have some- ARGH!"
He releases you and you fall over in the snow. You hear him cursing and limping away behind you as Cassie speaks up from somewhere.
"You alright, Helaine? I sliced his leg! Hey, you get back here!"
You hear the clashing of steel behind you… better get up quickly.


Stand up and look around.Who is that? Whats happening here?

Roll #1 1 = 1


That was Cassie speaking up.
You try to get back to your hooves but slip on the slippery frozen snow and get a mouthful of it.
You continue to hear the sound of fighting, but can't see it with your face buried into the snow!


Ah I got no time for this!
Stand up and see the commotion!

Roll #1 6 = 6


You finally get up and spit out the snow from your mouth.
Cassie is using her telekinesis to fight off your earlier assailant. A stallion wearing some type of leathery armor. The armor is black as the night with the exception of the underside and the chest, which are white. His face is concealed behind a black mask and a hood pulled over his head as well. You see he is bleeding at his leg, a trail of blood leading to him on top of the snowy ground.


No time for playing around! Fire a magic bolt at his wound!

Roll #1 1 = 1


You miss spectacularly. Your bolt scorches a large rock behind the two instead.
Looks like Cassie is managing to get the upper hand though. Her telekinesis seems decently powerful in combat!
Suddenly, Cassie freezes up completely and falls over without so much as making a sound. The stallion quickly gets back onto his hooves and looks around in a panicked manner.
"What the heck?"


"Cassie!" I charge against the stallion with my hat unfold, I then try to grab something inside to throw it against the damn thief!
Hopefully a mallet or something heavy.
Hat trick

Roll #1 9 + 2 = 11


You run over, grab a mallet from your magical hat of wonders and fling it at the thief, hitting him in the face.
He lets out a cry of pain and falls over, nursing his muzzle.

As you try to approach Cassie, an arrow strikes right in front of you into the ground, forcing you to stop.
"Hail, traveler."
A pony, more specifically a unicorn, jumps down from a nearby tree and lands between you and the stallion who is still down on the ground. Judging by her voice and body shape, this unicorn is a mare. She's wearing the exact same outfit as the stallion and has a drawn bow floating besides her, pointing at you.
"Do not worry for your friend. She is paralyzed, but only for a short time."


I stop next to Cassie but still ready to pounce.
"What do you two want?! Speak quickly!"


Cassie's eyes are wide open. She still seems aware of her surroundings, just unable to move at all.
"I saw my associate in a tight spot and had to step in so she or you wouldn't end him."
She briefly glances back at him, then back at you.
"He is still inexperienced, which is why your friend managed to get the drop on him. I was shadowing him without he himself knowing so, to ensure he would not perish."


I grit my teeth.
"So you two are friends? No matter, you are here to steal from us anyway."
I put a hoof on Cassie's back and I try to teleport both of us back inside the cabin..

Roll #1 9 = 9


"He is my protege-"
Before the mare can continue, you and Cassie safely teleport back into the lodge.
Edelweiss gasps in surprise as you suddenly appear.
"W-What happened!?"


"Thieves! Pack up and get ready! We are barricading oursleves here! Take care of Cassie for me!"
Go to the door and block it whatever heavy thing I can find.

Roll #1 1 = 1


The door opens outwards and there's really nothing suitable to block it with.
"Thieves? Oh no! What's wrong with Cassie!?"


Oh no no no!
"She's been poisoned by a paralyzed dart! There are thieves outside so get behind me!"
I then stick next to both Cassie and Edelweis with my crossbow and catalyst at the ready if the assailants sprang up on the door. With that I try to catch my breath.
One more moment before I can teleport all three of us out of here.

Roll #1 1 = 1


You are hyperventilating too much! Those two wretched rogues are no doubt ready to charge in here and cut your throats and there's nothing you can do to stop it!
Edelweiss cowers behind you.
Cassie is starting to stir slightly.


Try to focus get myself to focus!
"Stick next to me!

Roll #1 5 = 5


You can't! You just can't! You're shaking with anticipation!
"I-I am!"


Shit not now! Not now!
Put down my crossbow and slap myself! Calm down! Calm down!

Roll #1 2 = 2


It's not helping at all!
"Where… where are they? Are you sure they're coming after us."
Cassie starts to stir some more and can finally blink her eyes again.


Try to hold myself back from crying.
"I… I dont know!! Just shut up and be quiet you…"
I look at Cassie.
"C.. Cassie? You're alive! Thank goodness." I pat her head.

Get my shit together!

Roll #1 4 = 4


You tear up a little.
Edelweiss stands up and peeks out of one of the windows.
"I… I don't see anypony out there…"

Cassie blinks slowly as you pat her head, but seems unable to stand up.
"Can't… move… muscles…"




We'll start where we left off >>494800
For Helaine that's >>496667

And for Sonnet:
Once again, Gallant feels a magical energy course through his veins, allowing him to get back up.

Gallant Striker 5/4


"Foul beast. Taste the mace!"
Attack with my long thick mace.



Roll #1 5 = 5


"You are all doing a grand job, my fellow associates! Keep at it!"

Roll #1 5 = 5


Good! Great! Time to keep going! Shatter the necromancer's magic catalyst!

Roll #1 10 + 1 = 11


Try to peek from the window and see if they are still out there.

Roll #1 8 = 8


You swing your big, throbbing mace around in a wide arc, but the skeleton dodges by jumping back slightly.

Your inspiring words are drowned in the sounds of battle. Nobody hears you, princess!

What a grand idea! You smash the copper bell hanging from a pendant around his neck with your hooves, destroying it. All the skeletons fall apart onto the ground with the sound of bones clattering about.
"Damn you meddling kids!"

You look around, checking the spot where they were standing earlier but… you don't see them. The bloodstained snow is gone too… even the tracks in the snow are gone!


Pin him down with my monstrous maces.
"Give up at once and we will have mercy!"

Roll #1 8 + 3 = 11


I meant gauntlets.


Why thank you, I am not a princess.
I am merely a noble.

"Why yes, I am sure that now we could negotiate more politely, mister?"
Smooth Talker.

Roll #1 3 + 2 = 5


"Damn you, creature. I'll maceslap you into submission."
Maceslap him '1d10'

Roll #1 5 = 5


"Never! Grogar will destroy you all!"

He spits at you.
"You will make for a lovely corpse, little worm!"

You can't quite get a hit on him with Sonnet pinning him down.


Look at the others.
"Looks like they've left but we must barricade ourselves inside if we dont want any more intruder coming."


Step back, and clear any spittle on me with a frown.
"Very well then, sir.
This is your last chance to change your mind."


Turn him around and tie him up.

Roll #1 1 = 1


I will aid Sonnet to keep him restrained '1d10'

Roll #1 9 = 9


"There is two of them you know." I look at Cassie and Edelweis as I make my way to find something to block the doorway.

Roll #1 10 = 10


Cassie weakly gets back to her hooves, muttering quietly to herself.
"Filthy… poison using…"

Edelweiss supports her and nods at you.
"Y-Yes, we'll just hide and wait here…"

"My associates will annihilate you! You are finished!"

Helaine is not with the party.
He snarls and headbutts you. Hard. You fall backwards with a very bloodied nose.

Luckily Gotti is quick on the ball and restrains him again.
"Unhand me at once, fool!"


Stand up and rub my head.

Roll #1 9 - 1 = 8


"Nay, you shall pay for your crimes, evil shaman!"

Raise my mace to bludgeon him.


Frown and look away.
"I'm afraid… he is not in the rigth mind to cooperate or subdue himself… do what you must."


You get back up. Small drips of blood fall from your nose onto the rocky ground.

He struggles in your grip.
"Send me to the afterlife then! Do it if you've got the balls for it!"


"This is what we do with evil shamans where I come from!"
Smash him '1d10'

Roll #1 3 = 3



Stand near the necromancer.
"That would be the coward's way out. For both of us."
Is he tied down?

Then, put a hoof on Gotti's back, to tell him to stop.


I look up.
"Spare him? I don't understand that."


You smash him, wounding him gravely but not outright killing him.

You can just tie him down as an automatic action, yes. Let's say you do so.


You move a wardrobe in front of the doorway, blocking access to the inside.


"It's not the way of this land. Not Her way."
Good. And gag him too.


"But he is evil. He will hurt many ponies. Or he may teach others his evil ways."


"We apprehend him. And make sure to show him the True Way."


Gagged and bound.


"She is right. Without a catalyst and in the prison, he will have no way to hurt others."


"What True Way?"


"…in prison? For how long?"
I look really confused.


Now, what's the room around us like?
Anything I notice?
"The Way of Love and Compassion amongst ponies!"

Roll #1 1 = 1


"He is evil. He will turn Love and Compassion to evil. In zebra lands, we kill those before they can spread that evil."


"That will seal them from here." I smile

"With them not being here, I think it is better to barricade here than to run out in the open. If things get to the worse, I can teleport you three out of here and back into the woods. We then make our way back to town if that happen so you two can stay safe. Got it?"


"Not here in the Crystal Empire!"
Stand tall and proud.
"He will be given a second occasion."


Just a few benches lined up in several rows in front of an altar and a table with some blood and bones on it. Also your nose really hurts.

They both nod.


"In these lands, however, we try to avoid killing others if there is a way."


"……this is really weird. But I'll respect the crystal pony ways."
Give the necromancer a mean look but put my mace away.


"Alright we stay put until the other arrives. Cassie please rest for now, we dont know if that poison will have an after effect."
I then look outside to take guard.
"Well… if the others arrive that is."

Roll #1 1 = 1


"Thank you."


I promise I will teach you of The Way."


What does the party want to do? Inspect this room further? Or advance further into the cave by getting back on the overpass?

Can't see shit, captain. Nobody is out there.
Cassie sits back onto her haunches and looks down.


"I am a guest in this country. I wish to see the crystal pony way of things. Even if it is a weird for me."

Look around '1d10+2'

Roll #1 4 + 2 = 6


Right, I've inspected his room.
Just destroy whatever looks like a satanic summoning altar or something.

Roll #1 7 = 7


This seems like some kind of a cultist sermon room. There's a few old tomes lying around, as well as a lot of bones…

It's a black bell stained with blood. Your armored hooves smash it to pieces without much trouble, but some kind of force lashes out at you as you do so, throwing you against a wall.
The necromancer starts struggling furiously.


"Sit still, evil shaman."
Is this evil force visible?


Stand up and…
Look for this invisible power, I guess?
"Hold him down!"

Roll #1 7 = 7


"Are you all right?"


"Some dark force is present! No time to worry about us!"


No. It was likely a reaction to the physical force applied to whatever holy altar you just smashed. Like hitting gunpowder with a hammer.


Shake myself off and look at the necromancer.
Is he still unrestful?


"I see."

Maybe I can spot some clues the others missed.

Roll #1 7 = 7


Well I have everything I want.
I'm not going to touch evil books of evil shamans no sirree.
Bad Juju


Yes, he seems quite angry at you.

Just a bunch of books lying around. Aside from that, a lot of bones and blood, which is always nice! The cave goes deeper however.


"Cassie, are you alright?"


Squint my eyes at him in a hard stare.

Roll #1 10 = 10


"We shall head further down in the caves, see if there is anything else down there that might be a threat to passerbies."
What are the book titles?


She nods a little.
"Yeah yeah, just… tired. That's all."

He stops struggling, looking almost a bit scared.

'Darkest darkness', 'The thieving Magpies', 'Spirits from beyond', 'Grogar's bell', 'Summoning for dummies'.


"Now. We should move on."


Those don't sound like good reads at all.

"I whole-heartedly agree."


Head back onto the overpass and advance deeper? What about the necromancer? Leave him?


Take him with us as a prisoner.
Advance deeper.


I'll take that necro on my back '1d10'

Roll #1 1 = 1


It's not wise to just leave him here.


I nod to her and keep watch outside.

Roll #1 8 = 8


He subtly kicks you in the zebra balls and you collapse in pain.

All is safe in the zone.

For now.



>huge zebra balls.


Whatever you say, big boy~


If everything is quiet perhaps it is safe to look outside the windows for now.
Is Cassie already able to move?


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