/q/ - Quest


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406201[Last 50 Posts]

You're in your clan's hall. It's a large structure made of aged oak, just like all of the large ubuildings in your clan's ancient home. But Unlike most of the other buildings in your clan's village, this one possess a solid wood roof, and it sits on a wooden floor. It has been here, it is said, for centuries – only the clan's lorekeeper knows for certain when it was built. The unicorns or pegasi who come to visit might say that It's musty and smells of ponies who have spent too much time in the fields and not enough in the river, but it is covered with the trophies and regalia of your clan's history. It's a proud history, or so the elders say.

This is where the youngest of the clan's ponies spend their days learning from their elders while their parents work, train, or rule over the clan. You are surrounded by your fellow fillies and colts, waiting for today's first lesson.

Thistleberry is one of the oldest of the clan's elders, and she spends much of her time talking to you, the clan's young nobles. She lays down in the center of the room and smiles softly, turning the soft wrinkles of her face into a rolling landscape of green crevices. She waits for the gaggle of young ponies around her to settle down before she starts to speak.

"Ponies like to tell stories. Well, all creatures like to tell stories, but Ponies especially. This is a story we tell, and it is the most important one you can remember.

It is said that, long ago, after the parched earth cried out in thirst, and after the sky provided it with water, and after the plants and animals grew forth from the earth, there existed three gods: Silver Moon, Light Chaser, and Heart Petal.

Silver Moon, of course, ruled the stars and moon. Light Chaser was lord of the sun and sky. And Heart Petal was caretaker of the earth and soil.

As the Unicorns tell the story…"

A few of the older fillies and colts boo and hiss at the word "Unicorn," but Thistleberry quiets them down.

"…they say that Silver Moon decided one day to make children who would be her equals in grace and majesty, and so she created the unicorns. The other two gods grew jealous of the Graceful One's perfect children, and so they each crafted the Pegasi and Earth Ponies as pale imitations of the Unicorn race.

"The Pegasi tell aother story, of course," she laughs. "They say that Light Chaser crafted the Pegasi out of a piece of the firmament and a ray of sunlight, and that the other gods each attempted to copy the Golden One's craft, only to fail.

"But Earth Ponies tell the best story. They say that Heart Petal made all of the ponies out of her love for all living things, and that while she gifted the Unicorns and the Pegasi to her friends to be their faithful children, she made Earth Ponies to be the caretakers of the soil and of the natural world."


"Your clan is an ancient one, my little ponies. We know of all the pony gods: Heart Petal, Silver Moon, and Sun Chaser, of course. But also Rain Flash, who guides our warriors, and Brawn, who gives us strength. And Golden Heart who helps us craft and trade, and Springsong who guides us in the wilds. And we know of Nightstar, who guides us into the next world. We even know about the other gods like Boulder who lives in the forest and Erumal who plays tricks on the mean.

"But can you tell me which of those gods is our most beloved – the one who watches over us and protects us the most?"

You know she's looking for an answer. You can see all the little ponies wracking their brains for the answer… it's just on the tip of your tongue. What is it?




"Brawn! Brawn! Because our clan is strong!… Hehe, it even almost rhymes!"


"Its Brawn, Brawn is the best god there is!" I say excitedly.
and then quietly "Well, golden heart is okay too.."


I stick my tongue out at you both and make a farting noise with my mouth.




I'll look between them.
"Likely it would be Heart Petal, though Springsong and Boulder deserve mention as well."
I'll mutter to myself.
"Though Nightstar shepherds us after our end. Or forestalls it."


Thistleberry smiles and laughs. "No, Cauthon, it's not Erumal. The Laughing One is a friend to all those who need help against the powerful, but he is not our protector."

"Good, Restful Loam – the Earth Mother is beloved by all of the Earth Ponies, but she is not our patroness, and nor is the Traveler or the Great Bear."

"That's right, Ziza and Striker. Brawn is our protector. He gives us the strength to pull the plow and to swing the hammer. And he even gives our warriors strength when they need to fight. He is the child of the Earth Mother and the Stormbringer, born when Rain Flash declared his strength with a thunderbolt that crashed into the living soil. He has his mother's devotion and his father's great spirit."

She waits for the other ponies to settle before continuing.

"After Heart Petal created the Earth Ponies, we all learned a specific task from the gods. Tell me, what did we do first: Learn to fight from Rain Flash, learn to craft from Golden Heart, or did we learn to grow great fruit trees from Brawn?"




"To grow. Having that gave us something to protect, and to craft with."


I return the gesture.
"What are you? Afraid of strength? Afraid of fighting?!"

"Can't we learn to fight from Brawn too?… He keeps us strong!"


I frown "We're growers right? We grow first, craft second, fight last?"


I cross my eyes at you and lay my fold my ears down sideways.


I'll nod slightly.
"Being able to produce what we craft, and then learning how to defend it."


I smile at you "Hey this isn't so hard."


I return that gesture too!


I wave my hoof in the air.
"Elder! Elder! Ziza is making faces at me!"


Thistleberry smiles at your discussion, but she waits for you all to calm down before continuing.

"Striker and Loam are right, we learned to grow great big trees first. And, Ziza, Brawn may give us strength to fight when we need it, but he is first a lover of work, not fighting. I am happy that you remembered who showed us a skill first, though."

"First we learned to grow our trees, and then Golden Heart showed us how to carve and gild and hammer, and then finally Rain Flash taught us how to defend what we grow and make."

"Children, if you don't stop arguing then I'll have to take away your pie at tonight's dinner. Now you don't want that, do you?"

She continues.

"After we learned to grow and craft and fight, the Ponies fought a great war against their many enemies, who were jealous of our skill and wealth. Who did the Unicorn King Valorous have us fight? Was it the Griffins, high on their mountains? Was it the Diamond Dogs who live in the caves and underneath the ground? Or was it the Dragons and their kin?"


"Diamond dogs!"


I'll think for a minute.
All three sound like ones we would have fought, but…
"The diamond dogs?"


"Fiiine… he started it though!"

I tap a hoof to my chin and think.
"Ooh! Ooh! Was it all of them? At the same time? Because we're so strong?"


"It was Diamond dogs, they tried to take us as slaves, and we crushed them with hammers right?!"


"No, I'm afraid even we aren't that strong, Ziza. No clan can fight everyone and win. This is an important lesson you need to learn if you want to someday serve on the Ring."

"That's right, children. It was the Diamond Dogs, our most hated enemies. They tried to kidnap us and force us to work in their mines, but Brawn gave us his unending will and the strength to resist them."

She rests here eyes for a moment before continuing.

"One day, after the war, King Valorous sent us another clan of Earth Ponies – the Stickpickers. They had lost much in the war, and they were to merge with our clan, which was still strong. Did we adopt them as equals and family, or did we make them into thralls to serve beneath us?"

There's an important note here to be made about how thralldom would work – Thralls aren't exactly chattel slaves. They're more like medieval serfs. They have certain rights, and killing them would be seen as barbaric by the other clans. Thralldom is also not passed on through generations – someone born to a thrall mother or father is a full member of the clan he's born into. Most Earth Pony clans don't take thralls, but a few do.


"We sold them to the gryphons!"


"Well, there were earth ponies too, so they're equals!"


I'll just give him a look.
"We treated them as equals."


"Well… those who survived the war must have been strong! So we adopted them as equals, right?"


"I know that."


"Cauthon! That's horrible! I want you to wash your mouth out as soon as we're done with your lessons!"

"Yes, we adopted them into the Earthen Hoof clan, and we became stronger because of it."

With a bit of effort, Thistleberry rises to her hooves.

"You must remember our history to know how to lead us, my children. One day you may sit on the Ring and make the decisions that matter for our clan. The days are getting harder, and you must be ready for the challenges ahead of us all."

She shakes the dust off of her flanks and nudges a few of the younger foals off of the floor.

"Now run along and go play outside. You can worry about all of that later."

Y'all can continue to RP here for a bit, but we'll probably be jumping ahead about fifteen/twenty years soon.


And out I go, after nodding to Thistleberry.
Good ol' sunshine.


I leave.


"Alright!" I run outside and start a game of tag. Because I'm fast and strong and such!


I get up and stretch, then-

I run out after Gilded!
"Hey Gilded! We should train together so we can both be strong in the future!"
I also tag her.


"YEA! That sounds awesome. We'll be just as strong as Brawn was!" I try to tag you back. '1d10'

Roll #1 10 = 10


"YEAH! We'll be so strong that nobody can beat us!"
I try to chase her and tag her back!

Roll #1 8 = 8


You're all outside now. The clan's hall dominates the village, rising above all of the other buildings, but there are a few other large buildings – namely your temples dedicated to Brawn and Heart Petal. The clan's village houses maybe seven-hundred ponies. More live in houses flung around the clan's lands, or "tulla." Your clan is large and strong, though not the largest or strongest or wealthiest.

You tag Ziza and send him tumbling to the ground. Your own strength is pretty surprising, given how it's packed into the body of a little filly.

Knocked firmly onto your rump, you try to desperately tag Striker before she can get away. Despite your youthful athleticism, she's much too fast for you, and you're left with your hooves flailing in the air.


Well, we've got healers, right? They're always up to something interesting…


"Heeey! I'm gonna get you!"
I chase after her and try to tag her back!

Roll #1 6 = 6


Ready to move on.

I run over and tag you.

Roll #1 10 = 10


I can't get out of the way of that, can I? '1d10'

Roll #1 10 = 10


I laugh while I'm running "Come on don't slow down yet! " '1d10'

Roll #1 8 = 8


Looks like I can. And do.
"I wasn't playing, Cauthon."


"Nng! I'm noooot!"
I keep chasing after her!

Roll #1 2 = 2



Roll #1 18 = 18


"Yes you were!"

I tag you.

Roll #1 1 = 1



Roll #1 8 = 8


[1d20] Rolling for tag performance

Roll #1 16 = 16


I'll roll my eyes.
And head to the Heart Petal temple. There are healers there, right? Right.


The points I put into it means there should be a +2, right? Is 10 pass or fail here?


"Too slow Cauthon! That's what you get for being a prankster!"
I blow a raspberry at him.

"Aha! Tag! You're it!"
I run away.


Yes, you'd get +2. But a 10 is equivalent to a 5 (a 9 would also be equivalent to a 5), so it's not a crit success. I'd probably play it like you turned it into either a normal failure or a marginal failure or something.


"I'll show you when I'm clan chief! AHAHAHAHAHAHAH!"
I shake my hoof menacingly in the air then run off somewhere.


Ha, this game is great. Keep chasing you.
Ready to time skip


Yeah, I'm ready as well


It is many seasons later, and much has changed since your carefree days as foals.

As the seasons have gone by, famine and blizzards have wreaked havoc upon the Pony homeland. And as the food shortage has gotten worse, the rule of the Unicorns and demands of the Pegasi have gotten all the more despotic. The old balance – the Unicorns use their magic to help the tribes, the Pegasi control the weather and protect the Ponies, and the Earth Ponies grow the food – has fallen apart.

Many Earth Pony clans have decided to leave the homeland, traveling south into the pass through the Crystal Mountains. The first arrived several years ago, but more arrive every season. Your clan was one that decided to leave the homeland, uproot its history and its whole life, and travel the many miles south.

"Pony Pass," as they've named it, was your clan's destination, and it is everything the stories led you to believe: A green, fertile valley stretching for miles and miles in all directions, nestled between the peaks of the Crystal Mountains. There are stories, true, of Griffins, Diamond Dogs, and Dragons carrying off whole villages in the night, but your clan leaders have decided that the risk is worth it.

The Earthen Hoof clan has found land suitable for your new tulla and has begun to settle it, clearing the land and making it ready for a new village and farming. You stand now in a makeshift clan hall. The clan's chief, Thornshaker, has called you here personally, though you do not know why. He should be here in any minute.


I'll scratch my cheek while waiting. And look over the others.
It's been some time since we've all been together…


I wait patiently.


I wave at you, you don't come by often enough.


I'll just nod back.


How far we've come…
I walk over.

I give an acknowledging nod to her.


"I wouldn't move if I were you. ust wait for it."
I giggle.


>Just wait for it.


I do the accepted hoof motion for brawn = strong.
"This isn't something to be giggling about, but he should be around soon."


Thornshaker walks into the room. A large stallion, a devotee of Brawn, he wears the yoke that shows his status as a priest of your clan's patron deity. Except for a golden rope that hangs just above the yoke, nothing denotes him as the Earthen Hoof chieftain except his obvious age and experience.

"Striker, Loam… Ziza… Cauthon." He seems a little unsure of the last two and lets out a small sigh before each.

"I'll be blunt. We need to replace the members of the ring who were lost in the trek to this place or who chose to retire when we got here. That means we need new leaders, and the consensus among the remaining Ring members – that's, uh, just me and Thistleberry, by the way – is that it's time for the young to step up and start making some of the decisions. We're in a new land, and new ideas and voices will be needed.

"Thistleberry recommended the lot of you. She has followed you closely in your chosen work, and she thinks you all have something to offer us here on the Ring. Yes, even Cauthon.

"If you accept, we'll need your input immediately on the right rituals to perform and the crops we'll be growing. And we'll need someone to start exploring the area around our tulla. The gods only know what's out there.

"So do you accept? The clan needs you."


I'll nod.
"If I'm needed, why would I refuse?"


I look up into the air.
"Okay. Sounds fun."


"Of course I'll accept. It would be my pleasure to lead our great clan to strength and glory!"


"Of course, this must be what Brawn was making me strong for. I'll gladly accept."


"Good, glad to hear it."

He sits down at his seat at the Ring's table. It's an immense oak table, one of the few pieces of the clan's old village that was brought to Pony Pass. Long enough to seat six or seven members of the Ring, it dominates the tiny clan hall.

"The first order of business is to perform the rituals for the coming year. We were fortunate to arrive just at the beginning of spring. We should be able to plant and harvest as normal. But I fear our clan magic hasn't held up in the move here. So we won't be able to make all of the necessary rituals – you'll have to just choose one.

"Just as a refresher course in case any of you don't remember your lessons: We can perform the sacred rituals that will help our crops grow, others that will help our fruit orchard or make our mares more fertile, protect us in war or from disease, or help us in trade and crafting.

"Once we accumulate some more magic, maybe we can use that on more than one thing. But for right now you'll need to just pick one ritual. We'll perform it immediately. We don't have much time before planting season has to begin, anyways.

He leans back in his chair and chews on a bit of hay that he pulls out of his robe.

"I would recommend performing the crop ritual, of course. It will protect the crops from disease or lack of rain. It might help out the harvest, too.

"We could also use protection against disease or against our enemies. We don't need any more children than we'll get naturally. Just more mouths to feed when we're at our weakest.

"But it's up to all of you. Thistleberry is ill right now, so she'll abstain. And I'll only vote if we need to break a tie."


"All of them sound important."


"We need to perform a ritual for our crops. A strong clan needs strong harvests!"


I'll nod at that.
"But we should first be able to support ourselves before worrying about things beyond our control. The crop ritual will help fill our stores, and keep us fed once we start doing other rituals, such as the one against disease, or enemies."
I'll gesture slightly to Ziza and Striker.
"The ones who've seen us safely here should be able to protect us, at least until we get our hooves under us."


I grin "You've got nothing to worry about with us on your side. Enemies fear our hammer still"
I pause for emphasis. "The crop ritual is the one we need."


"But fruit is sweeter than grain."


I'll shake my head.
"You can't make bread from fruit. And cakes are only topped with it, not made from it."


I frown "But grain is more filling and helps build muscles, we need a good foundation."


I laugh and throw a hoof over her shoulder.
"Together our enemies will quake as they see us approaching!"

I frown.
"A clan cannot survive on fruit alone!"


"You can't make bread, but you can make wine."

"We've got plenty of grass around."


I'll shake my head.
"Wine comes from grapes, not things like apples or pears. And vineyards are a lot of work for a fledgeling community. Grain and corn will provide for most every basic need, along with carrots and a few other vegetables and herbs. Fruit is a commodity. A luxury."


"The followers of Erumal know how to make wine from all things. Even rocks!"


"Then make it from rocks, and leave the fields to more sensible planters."


Thornshaker nods his head.

"Yes, the crop ritual would be best. I'll inform the priestesses and we'll get started immediately."

"In the meantime, you should all decide what you're going to do while the clan plants and gets ready for the coming year. You could go exploring. That's very necessary right now, since we know so little about the surrounding area. Even our tulla is mostly unexplored.

"You could also direct some of the workers to build some buildings around the village. We need houses, but we also need real temples. Brawn will not bless us if his temple is a mere tent.

"Or you could just hold court and see if anyone has any issues they need sorted out.

"You could also go raiding, I suppose, but the clan needs all available hooves for the planting season. Nopony can be spared, and we go raiding now, we might endanger our whole livelihood here."


"Yes. Yes a temple would be good. Let's build for Brawn."


I'll nod.
"The ones we can spare can get to work building Brawn's shrine. We can add onto later, as the community grows."
I'll turn to the others.
"And I'd like to look around. We'd need to plot out where things are going to go."


I look puzzled "Well, maybe the fruit will still grown enough to make wine, wine isn't worth much without bread is it?"
I just grin at you. "So what do you say we round up some ponies and build a proper temple to Brawn? We won't need everyone for that will we?"


I return the grin.
"Yes! A great idea! We should begin working on the temple immediately!"


"Good thinking, we should get a blue-print of the land so we know where the best spot to put up our temple is, and chart out space for the houses."


You all round up some ponies who are free (a few warriors and some craftsponies) and get started building Brawn's new temple, placed right next to where the permanent Clan Hall will one day stand.

Everyone roll.



Roll #1 5 = 5



Roll #1 9 = 9



Roll #1 13 = 13



Roll #1 11 = 11


After regaling one of the workers with stories about the dead, he decides to sneak off and work in the fields for the rest of the day. The whole building enterprise is hampered by his absence.

A small trick you try to play on the foreman doesn't go over so well when it turns out he's allergic to sneezing powder. He's quite mad at you for the rest of the afternoon.

Still, it's pretty funny to hear him curse at you while unable to breathe out of his nostrils.

You make a pretty good effort, all considered. As the only dedicated craftspony on the ring, the builders listen to you closely, but you're distracted by the others' screw-ups.

You get into a strength contest with some of the workers, showing them how many tree trunks you can carry. You're able to beat all of them, but this doesn't help the building effort much.

One of the workers runs up to all of you. It's Pots, one of the younger craftsponies you roped into helping.

"We found something when we were digging for the foundation! I think it's a spear." He presents to you a bronze spearhead, gilded along the edges.

"What do you think it's from?"


"Gryphons, probably. Or from one of the settlements here before us."
I'll look at it a little closer.
"Most likely ceremonial."


"Its awfully pretty for a tool of war, maybe its from the settlement before us. Something their leader would have.. might mean that we have a good supply of metal nearby we should have someone check that out."


"It's obviously of dragon origin. We should show it off in the clan hall to visitors."


"A weaker clan, obviously!"
I let out a laugh.
"It's far too pretty to be used in war. Such a waste."

"Ah, good thinking Striker!"


"Dragons would probably use something bigger."
I'll look at the pony who brought it.
"There might be more in that area. Dig carefully."


"Dragons can shapeshift. Everypony knows that."


"Yes sir!"

The other ponies soon bring you a full set of bronze armor. Looks like it was made for a pony. It could also fit a Griffin, though. You're not sure.

Everypony does, indeed, know that.


"Ziza, Striker? Any ideas of what to do with this? It could be a boon, but it could also just be an old set of armor that was left on the ground."


"Yes, yes we really should show this off the ponies that visit the clan. We will become famous and known as the 'ponies that dig up armor' tribe."


I think for a moment "Well, we could copy the design, try to combine it with our own knowledge of armor crafting. Its nice to have other ideas. I still think we should scout for a mine nearby."


"Hm… We should see how it holds up to being attacked, because this may be what our enemies are still using!"


"We should go exploring now that the temple is built."
I look at it.


"I prefer Striker's idea, so that when we do manage to start finding metal, we'll be able to not only copy, but improve the design."
"Or we could finish it, since I doubt Brawn would look kindly on a half-built temple."


"Brawn is the hard-working god, so he knows the value of rest. We should rest and explore now, lest we anger him by overworking ourselves."


It's a well-made suit of armor, but you know how to build much sturdier sets of iron plate.

The ornamentation, however, could be copied. It is quite beautiful.


"Very well. But this had best not be another of your shenanigans."


Potts speaks up.

"So, uh, what should we do with the armor?"


"Put it on display as a curiosity for now, I suppose."


"Display it in the clan hall. It is too flimsy to wear and obviously has no magic."
I wander of and hope the others follow me.


"Display it for now. We'll figure out what to do with it later."


"Display it, its very nice to look at. We can copy the ornamentation of it onto our iron sets, including a nice yoke or hammer of course."
"I don't know, leaving something unfinished doesn't feel right, we'll get a fresh start on it in the morning at least?"


"Of course."


Potts takes the suit of armor and hangs it up behind the Ring's table in the Clan Hall.

It looks good. Everypony who passes by says it makes the clan look strong. Which is good, because they also say that the unfinished temple to Brawn makes the Earthen Hooves look lazy.

We're going to pause here.


Thanks for running.


File: 1367372872948.png (147.94 KB, 972x1524, 250597__UNOPT__safe_armor_helm…, IO Google TinEye)

It has been several weeks since the Earthen Hoof Clan's Ring made an abortive attempt at constructing a new temple to Brawn and happened upon a set of bronze armor. While the ancient armor has undoubtedly raised everypony's spirits after being placed in the clan's makeshift hall, construction on the new temple is still slow, and probably won't be completed until the end of the season.

Planting seems to be going well. The wheat, barley, and oat fields have most everypony's attention for now, but the clan's farmers are also starting to plant the sapling apple and pear trees they brought from the north. Within a few years you should have a burgeoning crop of fruit.

Right now you are all in the clan hall. Chief Thornshaker has called a meeting of the ring to discuss plans for the remainder of the spring season.

"We need to explore the area. We know almost nothing about what is around us. We don't even have a very good idea of what other pony clans are nearby. We only know that our old allies, the Mud Turtles, are several miles to the east. We've also heard that our enemies the Tree Shakers arrived here about a year before we did. They should be somewhere to the northwest, but the reports we've gotten from wanderers and traders aren't clear."

"Because of that, I've brought in Coiled Garden to help you out in the wilds if you decide to explore. We picked her up as we were moving down here, and since she's lived most of her life out in the woods, she should know how to get around."


"Thank you Chief. And thank you all for taking me in. I promise not to let you down."

Offer a child's salute.


I'll nod to Garden.
"We should likely make certain that the paths between us and our allies are safe. Or at least more safe than untamed wilds. Once we have something for trade, we'll want to be able to transport it properly."


"I can promise you safe paths, but roads will be hard. Boulder will show us the animal paths we can follow to travel around on hoof really fast, but big spaces to take big things like carts will be harder to find and make."


"Well, roads will likely be in a straight line between the two places. Barring any heavy forests or rivers we would need to build bridges over."


"We should explore our tula to see if the dragons have left us any more gifts and find places bandits might take nest."

I give you a wary look.


"There aren't any real 'roads.' This isn't the north – it's still a wilderness. There's just the big trail leading south through the pass and a few smaller trails that have been cut through the woods by the few clans that have lived here longer.


"Which is why we'd have to make them."
"I'm not so enthusiastic about hunting bandits, but finding where they might hole up is probably a good idea. Preventative medicine."


"You are very talky for a filly."


"Boulder can lead us to the homes of some of the bears that lived here. We can look for them to get rid of bandits, and you can make roads pass by them so people can stay there if it gets cold or rainy."

Was that to me?


That had best have been for Garden.
"If we rely too often on the gods to look out for us, instead of taking care of our own problems, they may grow tired of us."


"Better to have Erumal make the bandits fight themselves, I think."


"Boulder helps us find what we need, but we still have to survive on our own. Boulder will guide us to rivers and food, but we still have to be careful not to fall in or eat the poisonous ones. He'll help us find the bear homes, but he'll make us choose what to do when we get there."

"Sorry, but I like being outside in the woods, finding plants and ponies. I get excited just thinking about all the things Boulder put out there."


Thornshaker speaks again. "You could also try to speed up construction on the temple and around the village, but what we really need right now is more knowledge of what is around us."

"To the south is the river we've been drawing water from, and to the north is the forest. If you head too far to the east you start to run into the foothills of the eastern Crystal Mountains. The west is largely more open plains."


I'll nod slightly.
"I suppose that's true."


"We should explore our tula first. There is no point knowing what the mare across the street looks like if you don't know the shape of your own cutiemaark."


"I'll go wherever you think is best. This is your town, you get to choose."


"I'll concede the point there. And having an idea of the layout of the tula will give us some ideas for any future construction plans."


"Yes, good point."

"I'm afraid that at the moment we don't have any warriors to spare. They're all on the fringes of the settlement. We'll need to recruit and train more in the summer. So if you go, you'll be on your own."


"We go!"
Rolling to explore.

Roll #1 3 = 3


And I suppose I'll wander about the Tula myself. '1d20'

Roll #1 9 = 9


"Let's see what Boulder put here!"


Roll #1 7 = 7



You all set out from the nascent Earth Hoof settlement, venturing north towards the part of the forest that is on your tulla. You follow Cauthon the trickster for a while before realizing that he was just leading you in a great loop back towards the village, but eventually you all get your bearings and find yourselves in the woods.

The woods here near your village are slightly sparser than they are back home in the north. A few short oaks make give the area shade, but it's mostly scrub brush around here. Compared to the towering pines of the north, this is pretty unimpressive.

You have found a cave. By cave standards, it looks pretty nice and doesn't smell too bad, but you can't really tell from the outside. Bandits could easily hide out in there, if they wanted.


I look around inside.

Roll #1 4 = 4



Roll #1 1 = 1



Roll #1 4 + 2 = 6


"Look for poop!"

"Bears will poop outside their caves to make sure other bears know who the owner is. If there isn't any, the cave might be empty."

Look for poop.


Roll #1 10 = 10


I'll poke my head inside the cave, but just to take a look. '1d20'

Roll #1 4 = 4


"We should poop in the caves to let the bandits know that these holes belong to us!"


You don't find any poop, nor tracks or any real evidence of an inhabitant.

You're overcome by a powerful stench as you enter the cave – something that makes you gag and almost wretch up your breakfast. It's the small of something rotting, you're sure.

Nonetheless, you press on, knowing that where there's rotting garbage, there's likely to be discarded bits of gold, silver, personal documents, and the like.

What you find is not a treasure trove of abandoned goods, however. You instead find yourself ensnared in a web – a literal web, several feet tall. And above you looms eight glowing red eyes!

You try to quickly leap out of the way, but this only causes the web to stick to your hooves and coat further.

You are helpless.

You can dimly see Cauthon struggling to free himself from a sticky situation.


Get free!

Roll #1 6 = 6


"What's going ah!"

Hit it with the a rock from the sling!


Roll #1 15 = 15


Oh. A spider. How horrid. And I've nothing to use as any form of weapon. Wait. Rocks. There are rocks everywhere. Pick one up and throw it at the spider. '1d20-2'

Roll #1 12 - 2 = 10


You only entangle yourself further, making it quite difficult to move. The enormous spider is getting closer…

Remember: -1 point to attack since you only spent one point on the proficiency.
Your shot dings the giant spider in the top of its head and stuns it momentarily. It moves back a few steps and looks at you before chittering somehow.

You throw a rock at the spider. It knocks him in a leg, but doesn't seem to hurt him any.

The spider is a few moments away from Cauthon. You can't be sure what it plans on doing to the poor trickster, but it can't be good.


I don't want to do a funeral today, Nightstar.
Pick up another rock, and hurl it. '1d20-2'

Roll #1 13 - 2 = 11


"Go away!"

Another rock.


Roll #1 5 - 1 = 4


Get away get away get away!

Roll #1 4 = 4


The rock strikes the spider in the body and makes it pause for a second. It chitters at you again, clearly telling you to back off because it has some business it would like to attend to.

Your shot misses wildly, colliding with a stalactite hanging from above the web. There are a lot of them in here. Must be a limestone cave, experience tells you.

Your struggle is in vain. As you struggle against the sticky strands you only make them tighter.


"You horrid spider, let that idiot free from your webs! I don't want to have to explain to the town that one of their ring is dead."
And toss another rock. '1d20-2'

Roll #1 7 - 2 = 5


I try to disguise myself as a rotting corpse.

Roll #1 18 + 1 = 19


"Don't eat him!"

Fling another rock at it.


Doesn't Child of Gaia counter the proficiency loss?

Roll #1 10 - 1 = 9


Your rock misses. The spider mostly ignores your plea.

You let your tongue loll out and let your eyes cross horribly. A bit of skill with holding your breath and some control of your heartbeat completes the illusion.

The spider looks at you, curious for a moment, before turning its attention to your companions. It leaps off of its web and starts to move down the cave towards the exit where your friends are standing.

Oh right good point. Well it shouldn't have mattered up until now, anyways

Perhaps startled by the quick-moving spider, your shot clatters into the limestone ground.


While it is distracted I try to pull myself free.

Roll #1 1 = 1


This counts as combat, right?

Roll #1 19 + 2 = 21


Oh. Bother. Fly, rock! Straight and true! '1d20-2'

Roll #1 18 - 2 = 16


"Please help!"

Summon a swarm of insects to fight the big arachnid.


Is it plus 2 now that we moved to d20?

Roll #1 5 + 1 = 6



Knowing what a sucker webs are for a bit of reverse psychology, you stop struggling so hard and dislocate your shoulders, convincing the silken spidery strands to let you go. What a clever ruse! You are no longer helpless.

Your rock nails the spider directly in the head. He falls to the ground, stunned and helpless for the moment.

Oh no, the bonuses were always formulated on the basis of d20. The only big change is that a standard CM is worth +4 now.

A cloud of bees hears your plea for help, but as they see the great spider (or, as they put it in their native tongue, "bzzbzzbzzdangerpheromonebzzbzz," roughly translated to "horrible thing"), they immediately fly away, terrified.


No time to let it get up, more rocks! '1d20-2'

Roll #1 12 - 2 = 10


I start clubbing it's head.

Roll #1 15 - 1 = 14


"Wait! Wait, I need help, please!"

"But Boulder wouldn't need help. He'd roar and attack. That's what Boulder would do, so I will too."

Nature Elemental:Stone, to be as touch as him.


CM + CoG, correct?

Roll #1 17 + 5 = 22


Your rocks strike true, but they hit some sort of armored carapace along the spider's back. Who put that there? Probably Ctretat, the spider demon of chaos, you're sure.

Let's give you +2 or something for that last extrication, shall we? So 16.
And club away you do! Rearing back and winding up with your club, you give the spider a truly wicked wallop to the back of the skull (if spiders had skulls, which they don't).

Badly brained, the spider looks quite hurt.

That's right.
You feel your body harden and calcify. Your bones become granite. Your skin becomes also granite.

+2 to physical attack rolls while in this form. So a total of +3.

The spider tries to stand up and scurry away.

Roll #1 14 = 14


No scurrying for you! One more rock! '1d20-2'

Roll #1 17 - 2 = 15


I try to break one of its legs with my club.

Roll #1 13 = 13


"You won't hurt my new friends!"


Was the CM bonus only at the start, or for the duration?

Roll #1 5 + 3 = 8


The spider gets up, leaping onto the cave ceiling!

Your rock knocks him in the abdomen. You doubt it hurt him much, but he seems to wince.

As he leaps up you give him a good whack in the leg, but it comes nowhere close to breaking the exoskeleton. Ctretat makes these spider abominations strong.

The CM bonus will be at the start, yes.
You attempt to buck the spider hard with your new stoney appendages, but your weight is off and you only succeed in striking the cave wall. The spider manages to spit a bit of web at you with his spinneret. It's sticky, but it doesn't impede your movement much. Still, it's pretty gross.


"Don't hurt them!"

Tackle it.


Roll #1 1 + 3 = 4


Jump up and hit him!

Roll #1 6 - 1 = 5


Coming onto the scene I conjure a hammer [element fire] "Looks like that things needs to be squashed."

Roll #1 3 + 2 = 5


>and +2 cm instead of +4

Roll #1 19 + 4 = 23


You attempt to jump into the air and grab the enormous arachnid, but the spider nimbly dodges you. You are sent tumbling back to the earth and you crash into the cave wall. Even with your new granite body, that hurts pretty bad, and you're knocked senseless, but you're still on your hooves.

You have two more turns remaining of your transformation.

The Spider is much too quick for you as you awkwardly swing your club in the cave's confines. He easily dodges your attack before spitting some web on you. Ew.

Arriving late to the party, you quickly gather that the party is in danger, and you spring into action. Your fire hammer burns into existence in your hooves, glowing bright orange and red, like a molten slab of iron.

+3 to attacks with it.


Keep attacking!

Roll #1 8 - 1 = 7


More rocks. '1d20-2'

Roll #1 5 - 2 = 3


And arriving shortly after Gilded did on the scene, I swing my mighty hammer at it too!

Roll #1 7 + 5 = 12


"Itetete. Hope I didn't chip an ear."

Go back for another attack.


Roll #1 19 + 3 = 22


attack the spider. "You'll be alright, now."

Roll #1 13 + 2 = 15


As you lunge at the spider, he spits another spurt of web at you, staggering you momentarily.

You throw some more rocks, but they all miss terribly. One ricochets off a nearby wall and strikes you in the flank. Ouch!

That +3 is for Andy, munckin-kun
Galloping into battle, your hammer strikes the spider right in the armored carapace. Even a stallion as strong as you has difficulty penetrating such strong chitin. The spider returns your ineffective blow with a spurt of sticky silk.

You jump into the air and bash the spider in the abdomen with a strong buck from your rear legs. Down he tumbles onto the ground, helpless.

You deliver a stunning coup de grace to the wounded spider's head. It is smashed into gooey spidery bits instantly by your fire hammer. The tainted beast is dead.

Aside from a bit of spider silk on everyone, you are all unwounded.



Roll #1 1 - 1 = 0


I'll rub that sore spot.
"Well, better late than never. Aren't you two a little young to start scampering off to see who's on top when there's work to be done?"


"Calm yourself, the beast is dead."


"Thank you for the help! That spider was too scary."


I blush "No, it wasn't like that, I was just lost, these woods are confusing. "
my cheeks burning as bright as my hammer I continue "Besides, you're not that much older than me!"


I look around the cave for anything valuable or interesting.

Roll #1 15 = 15


"The point still stands."
I'll shrug.
"But you were probably slowed down by Ziza. You always were faster, when you played tag with him."


Annoying carapace.

"It wasn't like that at all!"

"She was not."
I frown.
"And I can prove it!"
I walk over to her.
"Would you like to race, Gilded?"


You can see the light from outside flickering off of the cave walls. The caves clearly go a bit deeper than the small cavern in which you fought the spider.

Lighting a torch, you see that there is a smaller cavern branching off to your right. You go down the tunnel and see a small treasure trove – collected belongings from the spider's many victims over the years.


"Save it until we're in sight of the tula. No sense you both getting lost in the woods."
"See anything back there, Cauthon?"


I start gathering it.


File: 1367382122493.gif (933.84 KB, 445x400, Scootaloo_jumping.gif, IO Google TinEye)

"I wanna race! I wanna race!"

Says the filly that is a jumping statue at the moment.


Guess he did find something interesting. Let's see what it is.


There's a great deal of gold and silver here. Enough that you can't carry it all by yourself, but certainly not so much that you couldn't all take it back.

There is also some weapons and armor.


Anything that would look good on me or that I know how to use?

Roll #1 1 = 1


"I can take you on any time," I say confidently "but do you really want to run around this cave?"



Roll #1 3 + 2 = 5


"Treasure? That's definitely more important than a race…"
I walk over there and survey it. Anything of interest to me?

I let out a boastful laugh.
"And I can take you on any time! But there's treasure to be had my friend! So let's settle the matter when we get back."

Roll #1 5 = 5


A weapon would have helped me here. Any that I might be able to use? '1d20'

Roll #1 1 = 1


"Shiny! What's in there?"


Roll #1 11 = 11


Help look for treasure. also dismiss my hammer since we aren't fighting for a whle '1d20'

Roll #1 7 = 7


You find a beautiful red silken shirt with inlaid gold threads. It seems like it would fit you.

You find a sword only partly dulled by time and the cave's damp. Its hilt is gilded, worked to resemble wings. Even a non-warrior like you can tell that this is a well-balanced sword.

You find an iron shield, long and oddly shaped. While not gilded or obviously magical in any way, it is beautifully painted in blue and purple in a startling geometric pattern. You have heard that this type of shield is used by strange folks who live far to the south.

You find a necklace of bear teeth, scrimshawed to show scenes from the legends about Boulder. This is a beloved symbol of your god, taken from bears who die of old age in the care of priests of the bear god.

Your hammer melts away into the aether. You find a rather short hammer that is clearly well-made. Its head is shaped like that of a ram.

You all gather up the remainder of the treasure, most of which is in foreign coins and small trinkets.


I clean the spider silk off me and put it on. After that I go back to the village with as much as I can carry.


Unfortunate that it seems pegasus-themed. Still, it'll do until I get something more fitting. Belting it on, I'll turn to the others.
"Well, that was exciting. What say we get this back to the tula?"


"This is the greatest treasure I could ever find. I'll never leave it."

"When we leave, let's mark the route we take. It's a big cave, you could use it to hide things or to stay away from the cold."


Hmm… interesting.
I'll take it!

"Good idea! We can use it perhaps even for ambushes in the future!"


A hammer is good, I can always use another one.
"Good thinking."


You all take the treasure back to the village. The traders estimate its value at about 50 bushels worth of apples. A great haul for the village, everyone knows.

It is now late in the season. The planting is finishing up, and the Ring has finished its immediate business. The temple to Brawn is receiving its finishing touches. Its high roof and small steeple rises above everything else in the village. Clusters of small houses now dot the village, though much of the population is still housed in shacks and tents. The town hall remains just a large house. Hopefully it will be expanded in the coming seasons.

You can explore the village if you like or attend to other business. Try speeding up construction on something, go off exploring on your own, try making something, whatever you can think of. We'll probably pause soonish, depending.


I ask the priest of Brawn what blessing we will be given for our temple.


I'll go and find a good spot for a medical tent. Later I could even oversee a hospital being built there…

Roll #1 2 = 2


take a look around the village, do we have a nice crafting section set up?


I want to ask the priest why the town worships Brawn? I've only known Boulder and his blessings.


Perhaps I should go to Gilded and challenge her to a race.
In fact, I do that!
"Gilded! Do you wanna have that race I mentioned earlier?"


There are a few full priests of Brawn in the village, of course, but the one in charge of the temple is Silver Plow. He's clearly a little uneasy about having a trickster in the temple, but he welcomes you nonetheless.

"We know the rituals to ask Brawn for a blessing to help our stallions work harder in the fields. They will be able to plow more land next year. We also know the rituals to ask the Strong One for greater strength for our warriors.

"We can't constantly perform both rituals, of course, unless we make the temple even bigger. So for now we can perform a continuous ritual for strength in battle and perform a sacrifice for greater strength in the fields when harvest and planting come. Or we could do it the other way around."

Right now there's just a few houses where some of the village's old mares and midwives live. They tend to know more about medicine than most others, and sick or injured ponies get taken to them.

You set up your tent over near their houses, but pretty soon old Firewheel, one of the oldest mares in the village but far from the quietest, approaches you.

"Get your house of death away from my home, you cretin! It's an ill omen to have a place like that next to a pony's house. Next thing you know, Nightstar will come and take us all to our next lives!"

You tag along with Cauthon. Silver Plow speaks to you.

"We worship Brawn because he taught our ancestors how to plow the soil and tend to the trees, and our ancestors always loved him more than any of the gods. He is our protector.

"He gives strength to those who need it – the strength to till the earth or swing the craftsman's hammer or use the sword to defend your home."

There's a makeshift forge near the center of the village, but no elaborate smithy yet. The craftsponies – the goldsmiths, potters, artists and the like – have set up on the southeast side of the village, but they do not yet have much in the way of permanent dwellings yet.

Bluebird is usually considered the leader of the craftsponies. He's an ironsmith by trade, and you've worked with him before. Indeed, he taught you a great deal about ironworking.


"What blessings have other gods given us access too?"


I'll look hurt.
"I didn't… I mean…"
My head will droop.
And I'll wrap everything up, and find a nice, deserted spot of the tula well-away from homes and shrine.
"Wasn't going to be a funeral home, anyway… it was supposed to be a place of new life, and healing the sick or injured."
Grumbling mostly to myself, how long does it take me to set up my tent? '1d20'

Roll #1 18 = 18


"The strength to till the Earth and to swing the sword. Brawn is pretty cool. But the temple is still being built. Can I help?"


Roll #1 19 = 19


Not bad. Hopefully we'll have something better up by winter.
"Well, sure where are we racing too?" I grin at you


"How about… to the temple?"
I return her grin and make a line in the ground as a starting line.


stand behind the line "Just don't fall too far behind." I wink at you, and get into a proper stance


I get into a similar stance.
"Alright… 3… 2… 1… GO!"
And then we're off!

Roll #1 19 = 19


beat him to the temple!

Roll #1 19 = 19


"Much of our knowledge of the gods' rituals was lost in our move to this place. We know how to ask Heart Petal for fertility, but that is all. We will need to sacrifice to learn the gods' mysteries or ask other clans to give us those secrets."

You quickly find a nice secluded space on the north side of the village, far away from anypony's house, but still close to the clan hall and the temple. You have your space set up almost immediately. All your tools and scrolls and books are here now.

You help the workers put the finishing touches on the temple's roof. When a worker slips and falls on the roof, you haul him back up single-hoofedly. Everyone is impressed with your strength, and Silver Plow offers a short prayer to Boulder and Brawn in thanks.

Now all that is left is some carpentry inside. The temple will certainly be ready by the start of Summer.

Huffing and puffing in your mad dash to the temple, you both reach it in record time (the previous record being set by little Ginger Snaps, age four, sometime last week). The small crowd that watches the two of you cheers at your great display of physical strength.


"Better get to work then."
I leave and find a place to sleep.


"Seems… seems neither of us is better than the other!"
I let out a boisterous laugh.


I laugh and pat you on the back "Brawn has bless us both with incredible speed. Lets go in and see the state of his temple."


File: 1367386924449.jpg (45.14 KB, 368x360, sad-apple-bloom-2_thumb.jpg, IO exif Google TinEye)

I'm kinda hungry. Who has the best soup here?

"I wanted to race too."


Well, I don't expect to get many visitors here. Not until I can train a doctor or two. And gather remedies from the town midwives and wise ladies. And, of course, earn some of their trust.
Though, perhaps I should go to the smith. Get this dull old sword sharpened a bit. I think I'll do that.


I blink "Well, why didn't speak up about it?"


"Of course!"
I follow her in.

"Ah, would you like to race after we finish observing the temple?"


"I was helping them on the roof, but I'm hungry now. Know any place that has soup?"


…Do I know any places with hearty and healthy soup?

Roll #1 16 = 16


You go down to the forge area and ask Bluebird to sharpen your new weapon.

"This is a fine blade," he says. "It looks old, though. Clearly earth pony work, but it was made for a pegasus knight. Do you see the markings here?"

He points at a star and horseshoe engraved into the bottom of the blade.

"That's the symbol for the Star Prancer clan. They're renowned weaponsmiths. I've heard that they traveled to the pass a few years ago, but I'm not sure what happened to them."

He sharpens the blade and returns it to you.

There's really no such thing as a restaurant in a pony village, of course (there's really no such thing as a "city" for that matter), but the clan hall always has servants making something at this time of day. But for soup, your best bet would be to try the warriors. They always like a good vegetable stew, and they make sure that their servants keep it coming.

The warriors don't have a great hall yet, but they do have an elaborate set of tents on the west end of the village.


roll to check out brawn's temple, what is the inside like, anything need doing?



Roll #1 7 = 7


"Can we go together? I'm still new here and I don't want to get lost. Plus, you can tell me about where you grew up."


Right, right!
"If you're looking for some hearty soup, the warriors by the west end of the village have a very tasty soup."


"Thank you. We found it in a cave with a rather large spider. It might have taken one of them before they could bring the sword to bear."
After thanking the smith, I'll start heading back to my tent before blinking a few times.
"Ah. I could have just asked the dead there, couldn't I?"
Shake my head.
"Ah well. Let the dead stay at peace."
Now, let's see… what else can I check on that won't get me driven away because of my patron? The Brawn temple. Let's see how that's finishing up.


"Well, we're all pretty new here, as you can see this village isn't even completely set up yet."


"oh yeah. But can you take me to the other warriors still. I usually only eat what plants I can find, so when I get to a new town, I always go for some soup and some juice."


"Well… erm, that… would be the other warriors? Do you want me to introduce you to them or something?"


"Please, pretty please!"


The temple itself is mostly complete. All that needs doing now is carpentry and skilled crafting to turn it from a simple building into a temple worthy of the clan's most beloved god. Brawnite temples are never ornate, but they still require some good carving and a few treasures here and there.

From the outside, the temple is a wooden building with a low-sloping roof. A single tall steeple stretches about twenty feet into the air over the roof. Once finally completed, the exterior will feature many beautiful carvings in rolling geometric patterns favored by Brawnites. A bell for the steeple will hopefully one day be cast or purchased, but it isn't strictly necessary.

The inside is very similar to the outside. Large wooden planks that will soon feature more elaborate carving line the walls. A simple altar stands at the center of the temple on a raised dais. The rest of the temple is bare, but the carpenters have created a system by which a great deal of light can be let in through shutters in the roof, which can then be closed during the winter or in the rain.

It doesn't look any different to you. Silver Plow welcomes you to the temple.

"I think you're our only priest of Nightstar, right Loam? Maybe in a few seasons the ring can set up a shrine to the Night Watcher."


Oh and let's try to wrap this up pre



Let's try to wr


what the fuck

Let's try to wrap this up quickly


"Erm… okay then."
I lead him over to the warriors and attempt to introduce him.

Roll #1 16 = 16


Talk to the carpenters, ask if they have everything they need.
"I'll catch up with you Ziza." I say as you go "Going to check on the carpenters, they've got a beautiful start here, nearly complete as it is."



"Priest is a bit strong of a word, but Nightstar is my patron. Likely the only shrine will be in my tent, unless I can convince the others to allow one being added on here."
I'll shrug.
"Though that will, of course, likely be after the shrines to Heart Petal, Boulder, Golden Heart, Springsong, and possibly a small one to Erumal to please Cauthon and keep him in line."
I'll shake my head.
"Regardless, as part of the Ring, I need to make certain you, the builders, and everyone else has what they need."


You introduce Coiled Garden to the small cadre of warriors your clan keeps. Not counting the other nobles who serve on the ring or perform other tasks, the Earthen Hoofs have eight dedicated warriors who guard the clan. In a raid, of course, the stallions will turn out to fight, but only the warriors and nobles are really trained in combat.

The captain of the warriors is Rock Jumper. He's a big, strong stallion who you knew growing up.

They're not in need of anything. The nearby forest has everything they need. Still, they would like you to discuss with the rest of the Ring making a logging camp and clearing more forest this summer.

"We are fine for now. The temple is coming along nicely, and by the start of the summer we should be done. I can then perform the rituals that our ancestors have performed since… well forever, I guess."


I'll nod.
After a moment, I'll continue.
"You… wouldn't happen to know a way that I could get on Firewheel's good side, do you? I'd like to learn the remedies and poultices that the midwives and wisemares have at their disposal, since at some point I would like to build a place where we can take our sick or injured to be healed."


"Oh, she's just a bit crabby. Bring her something sweet and she'll think the world of you."


"You're huge! That means you must have huge food! Take me to your soup, please!"


"I'll certainly propose it for you." I reply cheerfully beofre going on my way.

Go find blue bird "Hello there my old teacher, do the craftsponies need anything? Maybe some help with a more permanent dwelling "
or we can hold off until next time


"Well I'll just… leave you be… to your soup."
I sort of awkwardly excuse myself and leave.
Preferably someplace far away from him.


"I'll make a note of that. Thank you."
And then I'll head back to my tent and read books I've read a thousand times once more.


"Aren't you a bit small for the warrior's tent?"

"But, if you're a friend of the Ring, you are welcome here."

A servant comes and ladles you out a big bowl of vegetable soup.

"Gilded, it's good to see you! Yes, we do need some more permanent workshops. When the Ring gets the time and resources, we'd very much appreciate it."

okay, we're pausing. Thanks for playing, everyone.

We'll tentatively schedule for Friday, okay?


Works for me.
Thanks for running!


The Earthen Hoof clan has sown its crops, planted its saplings, and started to build its settlement into a permanent village, just in time for the start of the summer season.

For Earth Ponies, summer is a time of relative leisure. The intense bustle of the planting season fades into a long string of weeks spent on more diverse activities. Summer is traditionally the season of trade and barter, of exploration and foraging, and (of course) of raiding.

You have all gathered in the clan hall. After weeks of work spent on it, the hall is now a more impressive structure – a long house across from the temple dedicated to Brawn, decorated with intricate wood carvings and with its shingled roof painted a dull orange made from clay. The inside is covered in the simple tapestries brought from the homeland, the ancient clan treasures, and the bronze armor found beneath the temple's foundations. The armor is mounted just above the long table where the Ring sits, showing everyone how fortunate and favored your clan is by the spirits.

The treasure you recovered from the spider is displayed around the hall: silver bowls and chalices, foreign gold coins, new gems woven into your clan's tapestries. It's an impressive sight, the clan is sure.

Chief Thornshaker has called a meeting of the Ring to both make plans for the start of the season and to address petitions brought by the rest of the clan. Three of your kinsponies stand before the Ring, waiting for your attention: Bluebird, the craftspony forepony; Rockhoof, a clan warrior; and Brightly, one of the clan farmers. Bluebird is patiently waiting for the Ring to speak to him, but Brightly seems obviously agitated. He avoids looking at Rockhoof, who only smiles smugly.

"First we should talk about the requests of the rest of the clan. Brightly and Bluebird both have things they'd like to speak with us about," says Thornshaker.


"Let us speak with Brightly, first."


For Andy:
Talent: A hammer: +4 to conjure weapon


Element Fire (points spent: 2: bonus: 0)

Element Lightning (points spent: 1 : bonus: -1)

fervor (points spent: 3 : bonus 0)

conjure weapon (points spent: 3 bonus 0)
Weapon type: hammer: great weapon proficiency: [points spent:1 bonus: -1]


"Bluebird makes things for himself and makes time to speak with us. Let the timesmith speak first."


"These are your friends, so I'll let you guys pick."


I nod "let them speak then."


I'll shoot a glance at Cauthon.
"Why wouldn't we let the one who grows our food have the first voice of the session?"


"Because the growing season has passed."


"That doesn't mean we should discount their importance like a one would a tool that isn't in use."


"Crafters are important too. Why do you hate the craftponies so much? What did they ever do to you?"


"We have plenty of time for them both. But it seems Brightly is more eager to speak. "


"You presume quite a bit, Cauthon."
"That there is."


I tap my hoof impatiently at this.


I huff.
"Why are you so insistent on disregarding our growers?"


"I can see into your dreams when you sleep. I know your secrets."

"He is? Well why didn't you say so?"

"Brightly, my dear friend, speak! Tell us what troubles you."


"There is no need to disregard anyone. Stop this fighting"


I'll just grumble slightly under my breath, and listen to Brightly's concern.


Let's just get between the arguers and try to keep things from escalating.

"Do you know what soup I had in my dream three days ago? It was yummy, but I couldn't remember if it was the soup the big warrioris have, or the one the old lady makes."


Thornshaker sighs and shakes his head before he points at Brightly. The farmer speaks up immediately.

"Just a few days ago, I went outside my house to find this pony," he points at Rockhoof, "on my land, trampling on my vegetable garden and tearing up my scarecrow! I asked him why he did this, and he said that he needed my land for 'training!'" He practically whines the word "training" in a ridiculous voice.

"He destroyed my crops and my property. He owes me at least two bushels worth of compensation! More! But he refuses to pay! He just says that the warriors have the right to use land they need, and that I should move farther from the village if I don't like it."

Rockhoof continues to smirk and sit quietly.

You all know that Rockhoof is right. Warriors do have the right to use land they need, but it's very irregular for one to just take it without first talking to the Ring. Unusual, but not necessarily unlawful.

Thornshaker whispers to all of you, "This is a shaky issue. The farmers are already upset that the warriors didn't have to help plant like everypony else when we moved here…"


"But, isn't there a lot of room everywhere? Why did he pick the farmer's scarecrow to play against?"


"It was not soup, but a stew."

"I propose a compromise. The warrior can train in Brightly's garden, but from now on his name will be Lettucehoof."


"Rockhoof should have asked the Ring first, so that Brightly would have had the time to transplant his crops to another location."
I'll look to the others.
"The land may be up for use, but the destruction of property, and more importantly crops, is an offense to Brightly."
"Possibly for no other reason than that it was there."
"I had a different sort of compromise in mind. Until Rockhoof pays back Brightly for the destruction of property, he will work for him, repairing anything that needs repairing, planting anything that needs planting, and helping harvest if his debt is not paid by then."
I'll look at Rockhoof.
"It is shameful for a warrior to turn against the hoof that feeds him."


Rockhoof speaks up.

"I needed a target for sword practice, and his scarecrow was nearby. We don't have enough warriors, and we don't have room to train in the village, so I did the next best thing: Use this crop-picker's yard. It was for the good of the clan!"

"I shouldn't have to pay for his stupid property! The ring hasn't treated the warriors right – we don't have the stuff we need to protect the clan, and we don't have enough warriors, either. You all favor the farmers too much. We might be a farming clan, but that doesn't mean you can ignore us warriors!"

Rockhoof looks aghast for a moment before speaking.

"If that's the sort of punishment the Ring wants to give, we warriors will bear yet another burden. For the clan." The smug stallion holds his head high. Brightly rolls his eyes.

"I can't feed my family with a stupid name!" says the farmer.


I shake my head "brawn would find it offensive, to trample on another pony's work. " I look to rock hoof "what do you have to say on the matter?"


"Well why don't we build you and your friends a place to train and hold trails for new warriors? You and your warrior friends can even help build it."


"His 'stupid property' is what fills your belly and keeps your swordhoof strong. If you cannot respect that, then you will be incapable of protecting it."
I'll let out a small snort.
"And if our warriors behave like colts fresh from their dam's apron strings, then they should be treated as such."
"That was our next project anyway, wasn't it? Aside from the crafter's shops? Though now I'm beginning to think we should put priority on the crafters instead."


"Well, warriors do have the right to use whatever land they may need, because a strong warrior population means a strong clan!"

"…But as Gilded says, Brawn finds it an offense to trample one who works the earth's work. And to be a strong clan, we need hearty to feed our warriors with…"

"You don't have what you need to protect the clan? What?!"
I stomp my hoof on the ground angrily.


"Crafters have houses don't they?"


File: 1368589663811.gif (909.1 KB, 271x372, Applebloom chef hat.gif, IO Google TinEye)

"STEW! Of course! But whose was it?"

"Don't you have axes? Couldn't you have attacked the trees then, so we could have wood for the temples and you and the rest of the warriors would have had some practice chopping things?"

"The crafters can make things so the warriors can break them, right?"


"True, but crafters' wives tend to look down on the mess, if I hear it right."
"A few things, yes. Including a fenced-in sparring area, perhaps."


"Warriors shouldn't have to build. That's not their job."
I frown "we favored the farmers because as a new settlement we needed food. I think the warrior's time is come. We must build them a proper barracks to train at, this preventing more issues like this."


"Be that as it may, Rockhoof should have voiced his concerns to us, instead of causing damage to Brightly's property."


"Your stew, of course."

"I thought mares enjoys making things."

"How would non warriors know what a warrior wants in a building? The warriors should build so it will be perfect."


"I wouldn't know, since my experience with mares is rather… antagonistic, considering who I am. However, I'm fairly certain they don't enjoy messes, judging by my mother."


"That's right! We don't have enough warriors or swords or shields or or or…. uh…"

"Oh right, we don't have enough space to train, either. Yeah."

"I'm not going to go wander out into the woods so we can just train! That's a long way off."

Bluebird speaks up.
"And, uh, we craftsponies aren't going to make things just for the meath- uh, warriors, to break."

Rockhoof speaks. "Yeah, a training area could work. But we still need more warriors. And stuff."

Rockhoof seems to wince at the mention of physical labor.


"Well the crafters need things as well. But I am sure blue bird can tell us more in that in a moment "
I smile "well of course there is much joy in creating things, the forge is a wonderful place to be, and seeing a completed piece on use.. well its a very unique pleasure."

"But seeing something used wrongly or destroyed can be sad."


Wince? Wonder why.
"Warrior Rockhoof, as Earth ponies our labors make us stronger, and Brawn rewards such strength. You should find joy in the simple swinging of a hammer, as well as that of an axe or sword."
I'll look to the others.
"So, opinions on how this should be resolved?"


"Oh! You find all the ponies that want to be warriors and have them build your training area! You can say it's the first test for being a warrior!"
I smile proudly at my idea.


"The warriors want their house, but they have to have the craftspony make it, who don't want the warrior-ponies to break 'em."

"How about this: the fighting-ponies go and bring the stuff that the craftspony need to build? That way, when the fighters break things, it was the warrior's things anyway cause they went to get the stuff to make it?"


"That's unacceptable!"
I stomp my hoof on the ground again.
"We need to begin construction on a training hall immediately! And a forge to construct new weaponry and shields… Have everypony in town help! The warriors can bring raw materials back to keep their strength up, and the whole clan can be involved in the construction!"
I hop up on the highest thing near me and look out, trying to find a space for a training hall.

Roll #1 8 = 8


Well, what sort of response was I expecting sharing the ring with two meatheads.
Shaking my head, I'll sigh.


I sigh "for the issue at hoof, how about if rockhoof helped brightly relocate his farm?"


"That was similar to the compromise I suggested. I'll back it."


"But what's stopping him from going to the new farm and wrecking that one too?"


"Hey, yeah…. that could work…"

Rockhoof nods in acceptance. He's not the warrior leader (that would be Rock Jumper, his brother), but if it's acceptable to one of the more hard-headed warriors, your plan will probably be acceptable to the others.

Ziza, you dash outside and see a hill on the south side of the village. It overlooks the river to the south and would make both a good training space and a good watchtower. But you've heard that some of the craftsponies and farmers want to put a mill there some day, or perhaps a temple to Heart Petal. Using it for a warrior camp might upset them, though perhaps less so than taking Brightly's land.

Brightly taps his hoof. "And what about my compensation? I need those two bushels of goods? Are the warriors going to give it to me?"

"Why should I move? I like my land. It's near to the village."


"Hey, what about my idea?"


"Rockhoof doesn't want to pay you, and I don't think any of us are strong enough to change his mind. What if you took two bushels worth of spoils from the first raid?"


"He'll have a fenced-in sparring area. He won't need to go anywhere else."
I'll square a look at Rockhoof.
"And if he does decide to 'appropriate' Brightly's new farm, then perhaps there's more to this than just boredom on his part."
"You likely aren't going to get them from Rockhoof. I'm afraid you may have to settle this with Rock Jumper."
I'll shake my head a little sadly.
"I'm sorry."


"Well, what if everyone chose to help? What about the other stuff that has to be done? And what if no one helped, that would be bad too. And if the craftsponies didn't want to help, that would be bad too."

"If the warrior ponies want a house, they should help make it. It's only fair, right?"


I'll have to plan this with my fri- clanmates to find a suitable place.
I return.
"We need to find a suitable plot of land. This is important!"

"We can use your idea too! Everypony in the village ought to help! They can… they can do the heavy lifting during the construction!"


"The warrior ponies can break tree to make the roof and walls."

I tap my hoof on the table.

"Do we know the blessings of any warrior gods? We could make the warrior building a temple to get a blessing."


"Everyone who can be spared, I suppose. As for the site, well… There's probably a spot or two out there. We'll need to officially survey one."
"There is the chapel of Brawn. First thing we made here, more or less. I think that fits the bill."


"I meant a god more dedicated to fighting. His name is right on the tip of my tongue."


Thornshaker speaks up.

"No, we lost a lot of knowledge of the ancient rites when we journeyed here. We would need to discover some of the rituals again, or trade for the knowledge. He don't know any of the right rituals for Rain Flash or even Nightstar or Urox."


"All we need is a blessing from Brawn! For strength!"


>What if you took two bushels worth of spoils from the first raid?"
Brightly seems to grumble a bit at this.
"How long from now would that be? But I suppose I could wait. It would need to be at least three bushels then, though!"


"Yes. We will have to rely on Brawn's strength until then."
I'll turn to Rockhoof and Brightly.
"After their barracks is complete, perhaps Rock Jumper will take your side and make Rockhoof rebuild a few of your possessions, Brightly. I'm sorry I cannot do more."


I nod " to be strong we need a place to train"


"Then we dedicate the training area to whoever would like it the most and start making sacrifices."



I think for a moment "alright, that sounds agreeable."


"Sounds fair enough."
"Then we're all agreed?"




"That's reasonable."

"Yes… once we build the training hall, we should make it so all ponies can train! To give us a strong populace to back our strong warriors!"
I let out a boisterous laugh.


"Seems fair to me. Everyone seems happy with it."


I join in with a hearty laugh of my own. "Yes, we will be the strongest clan. Just let then try to trample us. "


I'll stomp a hoof on the wooden(?) table, signalling silence.
"Then we're agreed, and the matter is settled. Brightly will receive three bushels worth of goods from the first raid, and Rockhoof shall have his training supplies. A proper location will be surveyed soon."


Thornshaker nods.

"The warriors will give Brightly three bushels of goods after the next raid, and the clan will build a training hall for the warriors as soon as we can. The warriors will help build the hall, too."

Brightly looks reasonably satisfied, and Rockhoof seems very pleased with himself. You've probably avoided the worst of any sort of conflict within the clan.

Bluebird, the craftspony, speaks after Thornshaker signals for him to go ahead.

"Well now that we've talked about building more things, I think my concern is even more of an issue. We craftsponies need material and tools – forges, anvils, cloth and the like. And we can't get all of it ourselves from wandering traders or foraging.

"We need the clan to send a trading party out to a nearby clan as soon as we can. Hopefully they will have some of the things we need.

"We know that our friends the Mud Turtles are a ways to the east, but that's far into the foothills and might be dangerous. We also know that some of the clans around here are pretty well-established and might be able to trade.

"There are the Wheat Manes to the south, way across the river. The rumors we've heard say that they've got a large apple orchard, so they're probably pretty well-off. And then there are the Blue Leafs to the north. We've heard different things about them. They might be unfriendly or they might not, but they were one of the first clans to come here, so they probably have something to trade. The Firewhistles are to the east. They probably have some of the things we really need like iron and forges, but we've heard they're unfriendly and warlike. And taking us that way would put our traders near to the Tree Shakers, who have always hated us. But it might be worth it."

"You should consider sending out a trading party before the season is over. Or perhaps you could go yourselves as envoys."


I tap my hoof once hard "aye"


"As I'm not really needed yet, as none have fallen ill or require my talents, I can be our representative. The others are still needed here."
I'll consider a moment.
"I would suggest heading to either the Wheat Manes or Blue Leaves. Once we're on more equal hoofing with the Firewhistles, we can think about sending an envoy there."
I'll look to the others.
"Does that sound reasonable?"


"Oh, we can use this as a chance to map out more of the land. We can send some warriors to the places we don't go to so we can have better maps and find out where Boulder put things and find out where the other ponies are."


I'll shake my head slightly.
"We don't want to spread ourselves too thin, especially since we are still a small town. Sending out too many ponies will slow down everything else that needs doing here. But, once our town has grown, perhaps we can send out more ponies."


"That's reasonable. But take me along too. I'm good at being by myself and away from towns."


"Let's visit the Blue Leafs."


"No we won't need to send the warriors. " I stand and conjure a lightening hammer. '1d20+1' "I will go and protect you myself "

Roll #1 14 + 1 = 15


"And I'll join as well. The warriors need to focus on protecting our land for now."


I shake my head.
"But that would leave the ring underponed. Should Ziza, Cauthon, and Striker stay, there will be a good three votes on what must be done."
I'll smile slightly at Garden.
"And while I appreciate the offer, young one, I can't possibly accept. Even if we knew the roads, we don't about bandits or the like."


A fire-wreathed red-hot hammer appears in your hooves. It's pretty impressive. Thornshaker's clearly a little nervous about it being in the wooden clan hall amidst all the ancient tapestries, though.


"How long of a trip will it be?"


"I'm not that little. Plus, I've fought a giant spider with y'all. I can take care of myself and anypony with me. Besides, you could always use an extra pair of eyes on the road."


"I'm not certain. If it goes well, then it shouldn't be more than a hooffull of days. At least the trading part."
I'll shrug.
"As for travel time, well… geography was never my strongest subject."


Pfft, there is nothing to fear from it as long as its in my hooves. I grin at him.


"Maybe a few days of traveling to get to any of the nearby clans. It will take a little longer if you bring trade goods."


"Speaking of which, we're not going to get any anvils for free. What would we be bringing to offer, as well as a small gift, so that they might be more hospitable?"


"You are young. That means we can marry you off to another clan to secure an alliance."

I nudge Coiled Garden with a hoof.


I'll just give Cauthon a deadpan stare.
"Were there any possibility of any female of any race taking you, Cauthon, we'd offer you up instead. Though, that might be taken as an insult."


"Perhaps some of the treasure you recovered from that spider's cave?" Bluebird says.

"Marriages are never a bad idea," says Thornshaker, "but I'm not so sure these clans would want to ally with such a new clan."

"Nor would they want to take in the ponies we find out in the woods."


"We wouldn't tell them where we found her, of course."

"Relax, my friend, it was a joke."


"That might be good. I will leave it to your discretion to choose what you'd think might fetch a good price…"
I'll frown slightly for a moment.
"However, you might want to send somepony who's a good haggler. I doubt I would get us any deals…"
"Like when you left a half-dozen spiders in my notebooks when we were children?"


"Trading the treasure sounds good. the less we say the more other clans will wonder about how us, the new foals on the block, came to have such things in great enough numbers to give away."

"That wasn't a joke. That was me letting six spiders into your notebooks when we were foals."


"But I don't wanna get marri… Wait, what does an earth pony look for in a wife?"


I nod "that would work. "
"The ring can spare me for that long. We will find a location for the training ground before we leave and the clan can get started on it while we go to trade "


"Bah. Pranks and jokes are all the same to you, anyway."
I'll huff slightly.
"You won't need to worry about that for a few summers yet. And the matrons of the town will set you right on that regard. Though, I personally prefer those who are simply themselves, instead of what they think their partner would like."
"Then it seems we're going as a group."


I frown "maybe you shoukd stay back until you are older."


"Femaleness, among other things."

I gasp.
"Now that is just insulting. Pranks and jokes are two very different things, but I cannot say more to the uninitiated."


"Fine. The priests and builders like it when I help them, and I'll practice with the warriors so you can't say I don't know how to protect myself. Next time, I'm going the next time you go out, promise?"


"That sounds like a plan."

"Bah, they're all the same useless nonsense. I'd rather lift."


"If you get as strong as you say you will, then I promise."
"Then I'll never hear of the distinction. First bit of good news today."


Thornshaker speaks. "If you all want to go on this trade mission, it seems like a fine idea to me. I can oversee the survey of the area for a new training site and make sure the village is defended. If anything comes up, I'm sure that I and Thistleberry can handle it."

"Whatever you decide, I'll tell the traders to start packing up some goods for trade. They'll want to send a representative, I'm sure."

We're going to pause here. If you want to continue to RP, go for it.


I nod. "Once you carry our clan's strength you're welcome to come."


"Thank you. That would be most appreciated, and I'll leave the decision to your experience."


"Remember to eat your vegetables and brush your teeth."

Thanks for running.
"Of course they will."


"Perfect. " I smile and feel the warmth coming off my hammer. "A trader would be nice to have along."


"You bet I will. Even Boulder will be proud of me. Watch how many hoof lifts I can do. And this is just the start."


Roll #1 14 = 14


I'll just chuckle slightly, though it'll probably sound more like a rasp than a laugh.
"Just don't forget to exercise your mind as well. Your brain is a muscle, too."


"Sounds like a plan!"
I let out another laugh.

I smile and laugh at her enthusiasm.
"Good! You're strong for your age! I can already tell you're going to grow into a fine warrior!"


"Yup. The Priests of Brawn have been teaching me when they have a chance. How about you give me some lessons too?"

"Thanks. You're pretty strong yourself."


"I can't teach you much, as the knowledge I have is for a healer, not a warrior."


"Not too bad, but can you do it with one hoof?"


"I'll try."


"Well, how did you learn to be such a good healer?"

Roll #1 19 = 19


"Time, and the right teachers."
I'll smile a little.
"But then again, I learned from rather… unconventional teachers."


"Keep up your training and you'll be able to just pick up anyone you fancy and carry them away. " I laugh a bit. " maybe I can show you how to swing a hammer."


I whistle slightly impressed "you've got real potential kid."


"That's impressive. What about with your face or tail?"


"Let me know who they were an I can ask them then if they can show."

"How long did you guys train for to be so big and powerful?"


I'll shake my head.
"They were in our previous home, far to the cold north. They've all passed on by now…"


"Oh. I'm sorry."


"It's alright. Most of them were dead already."
I'll wave a hoof dismissively.
"And they wouldn't want me to spend time mourning when I could be using that to heal others. Or study."


"Throu hard work, on training grounds and at the forge. " I say and then go off to prepare fr the trip


"Ages. Since we were very young."
I grin at Gilded.
"Those were the days…"


"What can you tell me about where you grew up?"


"Far to the north, and it got colder every day. I'm sure Ziza will fill your head with stories of our clan's previous, and aspiring heroes, but don't let him talk too long. We've a trip to prepare for."
And with that, I'll start to leave.


File: 1369099883473.png (128.9 KB, 1280x886, 298139__UNOPT__safe_oc_riding_…, IO Google TinEye)

The ring has decided on embarking of a trade mission, and the lot of you are tagging along to oversee those efforts. A trade caravan offers a good opportunity to scout the wilderness and get to know the clans around you, though it also offers a tempting target to roving bands of monsters and bandits.

The clan's craftsponies have put together three wagons of goods to take with you to the Blue Leafs. A few bushels of dried fruit from your clan's stores, as well as much of the treasure you liberated from the spider's lair. They hope you will bring back iron, anvils, tools, and other goods that will help your crafters, farmers, and warriors in the coming year.

Chief Thornshaker surveys the wagons in the town square. "There is much of our clan's wealth going on this caravan. You must be careful. If we were to lose the goods to bandits or monsters or a poor trade, the coming year would be very tough on us.

"And we only have eight warriors in the clan. We'll need most of them to stay here, but if you like, we can send more to help you."

He gestures at another pony nearby. "I'm sending Cold Fortune here with you. She's one of our best magic-users. I offered her a position on the ring back before we arrived in this country, but she only decided to join now." He chuckles a little and says, "I think your victory over the spider in the woods convinced her that we might just survive out here."

Bluebird, the leader of the craftsponies, also speaks. "I'd like to send Juniper with you, if you like. She's our best law-talker, and she'd be a good pony to have in a negotiation," he says. "She knows all we know about the surrounding clans."

You all knew Juniper growing up. She's a smart mare, and she's been angling for a position on the ring for some time. If she harbors any resentment towards you over your appointments to the clan's leadership, she doesn't show it on her face. She just smiles and bows at all of you.

"If it pleases all of you, I will be happy to help negotiate for the clan."


I'll walk out from behind the chief and join the group, sizing each of them up.


"I think I would make a better negotiator. you should get rid of her and give us another guard."


"Bah, the warriors can stay here! Me and Gilded can defend the caravan from whatever threat dares approach us!"



"If that's what you want," Juniper says.

Thornshaker nods and says, "It is good that you think you can handle this on your own, but if things turn sour I would certainly prefer to not lose the caravan."

"The choice is up to all of you."


I frown "Wait now, Juniper knows all about the clan we're going to see. Besides that, we can trust her. We've known her since we were foals: Let's take her along. And Cold Fortune will be a nice edition to the defense. Thankyou."


"It was a joke, my dear. I make those from time to time."


I slap your back and laugh a bit awkwardly "See, you remember Cauthon right? Always the trickster."
"Careful next time" I whisper to you


"Well you certainly don't lack for confidence. Are you always this peppy?"


I slap you back harder and wince a little.
"It's not my fault she has no sense of humor. Now that I think about it, if she is such a good negotiator why didn't she try negotiating with me?"


>I slap your back


"Well… I suppose we can allow those two along."

"Confidence? I don't need confidence when I know that I have the superior strength to whoever tries to challenge us!"


"Yeah? That's what's gotten the Ring this far?"


"Probably because you're one of the ring now. the position commands a lot of respect." I smile, unflinching at your slap.
"Well, Cold Fortunes, its nice to have you on the team."
"Indeed, Brawn as gifted you with great strength to defend our lands." I flex a bit "And me too!"


I enthusiastically nod and laugh.

I join her in the flex and let out another boisterous laugh.


"Well, those weapons we're bringing to trade for one thing."
I join you rolling for laugh quality '1d20'

Roll #1 10 = 10


"Yeah. Gotta say I'm curious 'bout how you do things."

I take a step back from the machismo.


It's a loud, rolling belly laugh. Your mirth is obvious to everyone, including several species of insect and trees in the area.

Juniper speaks up. "It would be good to leave before midday. It will be several days of travel before we reach the Blue Leafs' lands."


I pull my travel bag out of a tree.
"I'm ready if everyone else is."


"Packed and ready to go. Who's leading this convoy?"


"Yea, I've been ready all morning."
I nod "Lets go then."
"Leading, well we all are leaders" I look to Ziza "You want to take point?"


"I've been ready all morning!"
I shoulder all my gear.



You all begin to trudge steadily northwards, past the farmland that surrounds your clan's village, past the treeline that marks the edge of Earthen Hoof territory, into the woods claimed by no pony clan you know of.

The wagon train travels for a little more than a day in the woods, following a path that would not be obvious to you unless somepony pointed it out – a thin area of the forest free of larger trees and bushes, with the barest hint of ruts left by wagons and carts before you.

"Ponies have lived in this pass for a long time," Juniper says, "but most of the clans in this valley have only arrived in the last few years. There are some, though, like the Blue Leafs, who have been here for decades. If we can get on their good side, I think it will help us-"

Juniper stops talking as one of the stallions pulling the carts stops and holds up a hoof.

Everyone roll.



Roll #1 4 = 4



Roll #1 6 = 6



Roll #1 5 = 5



Roll #1 12 = 12



Roll #1 5 = 5



Roll #1 19 = 19


None of you hear anything. Must've just been a bird.

You're pretty sure you can see one of the bushes up ahead rustle ominously.


I shrug and look at the others.


I shake my head.



I put a hoof in the air and signal for everyone to stop, and ready their weapons.
"I think there's something int he bushes…"

I whack him on the back of the head.


Everypony in the caravan tenses up. The ponies pulling the wagons unhitch themselves and grab their clubs. Juniper draws a small dagger from her belt.


I draw my club.


'1d20+4' conjure a hammer

Roll #1 14 + 4 = 18


I peer up ahead.


I try to peer up ahead and see if I can see anything behind the bush.

Roll #1 15 = 15


Your hammer appears in your hooves. It's a really good hammer. +1 to rolls with it.

There are lots of trees, as well as the bush everypony is now staring at. It looks like a mulberry bush.

You jump up as high as you can in an effort to see over and around the bush. You can make out a fuzzy red tail shaking slightly.


"Hold still."
I jump onto Ziza's back and try to see what is hiding in the bushes.

Roll #1 9 = 9


A fuzzy red tail?…
I try to stealthily approach it to get a better vie-

"Ack! Hey! Get off!"
I grumble and set him down without making too much noise.

Roll #1 11 = 11


You can't make out much, just a bit of red and white flashing periodically out from behind the shrubbery.

You put him down, but the struggle between the two of you is more than a little loud.


I watch them cornering the bush.


I pat and ruffle his mane like a dog, then go and sneak over to the bush.

Roll #1 18 = 18


I'll walk up over to the group cornering the bush.


I sit down and scratch one of my ears with a rear hoof.


In an effort belying your strength and size, you carefully tip-hoof over to the bush and peak around it.

Behind the bush is a fox, covering its eyes with its paws and lying motionless on the ground, save for its twitching tail.




Is it… scared?
I scratch my head, confused. What do I even do with a scared fox?…


I wave a hoof and look at them curiously.


And on that note I back away a small bit and wave Gilded over.
"It's… It's a scared fox."


I blink "Well, then its no problem, just let it go, unless you want to keep it."



Roll #1 3 = 3


The fox continues to hide against the ground, seemingly oblivious to your presence.


Look back at the rest of the party, raising an eyebrow.


try to pick it up by the scruff of its neck. '1d20'

Roll #1 9 = 9


I walk over and look at whatever it is they are looking at.


"Is… they don't train foxes as watch animals, do they? Is that even a thing that can be done? Can we train it as a watch animal?"
I scratch my head in further confusion.

I stand by to try and catch it if she loses her grip on it.

Roll #1 8 = 8


It clearly doesn't want to be picked up and tries to scurry away

Roll #1 17 - 5 = 12


"A fox! Catch it for Erumal!"
I try to catch it.

Roll #1 20 = 20


It gets out of your grasp and begins to limp away, its hind leg obviously injured.

Ziza tries to grab it.


Roll #1 9 - 5 = 4


"I don't know"


Before Ziza can grab the fox, Cauthon shoves him out of the way and pounces. The fox begins to run as fast as it can in the other direction, only for Cauthon to somehow appear behind a tree ahead of it and trap it in a sack.


I whistle, impressed.


I tie the sack shut and hold it up to my face.
"Don't worry you little fuzzball. We'll have a healer fix you leg then let you go."
I look at the group and the guards.
"Are any of you healers?"


"Wha- Where'd you even get that bag from?"
I blink in further confusion.
So very confused…


"Thank you."

"What do you mean?"


The wagon ponies hitch themselves to their charges once more. They're ready to go.

"I'm a healer, yes," Juniper says.


Roll #1 10 + 2 = 12


Juniper reaches into the bag to touch the fox. Miraculously, the fox does not bite her, and soon its leg is largely healed.


"You- bu- I don't even know…"
I plop down on the ground and scratch my head again, putting a hoof down and idly scratching out points representing events and mumbling as I try to recall.
"Okay, so… I found the fox, then Gildy tried to catch it, then I tried to catch it… then Cauthon shoved me out of the way and somehow appeared on the other side… with a bag he didn't have before… yeah!"
I stand back up.
"Where did you get that empty bag from? And how'd you even get over there so fast?"


"Fancy touch. Where'd you learn that?"

"He coulda took it off a cart."


I carefully take the fox out of the bag and pet its head a few times.
"Off you go, fox. Tell Erumal I said thanks."
I wink at it.

"I have no idea what you are talking about."

"I could of."


"From the priestesses of Golden Heart. In the old country, our allies the Mud Turtles had a shrine dedicated to the goddess of crafts and trade. I studied there for a while."

It walks a few steps from you and seems to give a little bow before running off into the woods.

You feel the wind blow through the woods, and you could swear you hear a bleaty giggle on it. It also smells like pretty dresses. You're pretty sure Erumal is pleased.

"I think we should press on," Juniper says.


"Then let's press on!"
I trot off ahead with a spring in my step.



I turn and continue down the path.


You all continue walking north, following the meandering path through the woods.

Juniper continues speaking about her plans for trade with the Blue Leafs.

"They're a powerful clan, from what we've heard. They're well-established. They have a large orchard, temples to many gods, and they trade their fruit all over the pass. Most importantly, though, we've heard that they have access to iron somewhere on their lands. And that's what we need in order to recruit more warriors, build tools, and grow."

Everyone roll.



Roll #1 1 = 1



Roll #1 3 = 3


"Sounds like you have a plan. What'dya think they'll want from us?"


Roll #1 4 = 4



Roll #1 9, 4, 2, 16 = 31


An arrow strikes you right in the flank. You yowl in pain and collapse on the ground, helpless.

"I think that our-

"Watch out!"

Juniper dives to the ground as arrows whiz past your heads.

The three wagon ponies are taken by surprise as arrows strike their carts. The one in the rear of the caravan takes an arrow to the leg and falls down, helpless. The others begin to unhitch themselves and prepare for battle.


To the east, a grouup of ponies runs out of the thickest part of the woods, armed and ready for blood. Their leader appears at the head of their mob.

"Well, look what we have out here! A nice fat group of traders.

"Surrender or die!"


I squirm in pain and try to stand back up!

Roll #1 20 = 20


Magic Bolt!

Roll #1 12 = 12



Roll #1 3 - 2 = 1


You pull the arrow from your flank with your teeth. You rise to your hooves and draw your hammer and shield.

These ponies aren't going to take your clan's stuff! Not without a fight! +2 to your next roll.

>12+4 = 16
A bolt of living ice stretches forth from your hoof and strikes one of the bandits in the chest. He writhes around in pain but stays on his hooves.

You feel a cold chill run up your spine. Perhaps you shouldn't have invoked the name of Nightstar like that. -2 to your next roll.

"Well if you won't surrender, I guess it's death you want!" shouts the bandit leader. He and his bandits charge into your midst.

There are five bandits and their leader. Juniper and the teamster ponies have circled their wagons and are attempting to revive the downed puller.


I smash one of their heads with my club.

Roll #1 20 - 3 = 17


I charge at them, shouting and bring my hammer down on one of them!

Roll #1 17 + 4 = 21


Imma hit that guy with my stick.

Roll #1 15 - 1 = 14


>14+4 = 18

Charging at the pony you struck with your magic ice bolt, you rear back and hit him in the head with your staff, wielding it like a particularly long and heavy bat.

He falls to the ground, out cold.

"Brrawwwwwwwwwwwn strooooooooooonnnnnnnng!" you shout as your giant warhammer connects with one of the bandits, striking him in the gut with a brutal blow. He keels over with an "oof" and and "ugh," unconscious on the ground.

You lure the bandit leader towards you before leaping over his head and bonking him as hard as you can. You hear a sickening crack as your club connects with the back of his skull. He's down on the ground, helpless.

There are three bandits left standing. Each is much more cautious now, but they are still determined to teach you punks a lesson.


Oh and everyone gets +1 to attacks this turn


I give a Terrifying roar after I strike the bandit.

Roll #1 15 + 1 = 16


I bonk another bandit.

Roll #1 8 + 1 = 9


Let's hit another one!

Roll #1 14 + 1 = 15


The bandits have formed a tight circle to defend against you, but you're having none of it. You charge in and start swinging again, breaking up their circle and delivering a wicked blow to one of their number.

You try to leap out from cover and bean a bandit in the skull again, but the bandit didn't live this long in the wilderness to be ambushed by some goat-worshiping hipster. As you lunge at him, he sidesteps you and punches you in the gut.

>15+4 = 19
As the pony Ziza attacked is still reeling from your large comrade's onslaught, you follow up the attack with another blow to the face. He's out on the ground, helpless.

The two remaining bandits try to run away.

Roll #1 6, 6 = 12


Attack a bandit, in the name of brawn!

Roll #1 19 + 1 = 20


Magic bolt one of them. Maybe it'll freeze him.

Roll #1 6 = 6


I yell at one of them to come back and face retribution!

Roll #1 1 = 1


I buck him in the head.

Roll #1 5 - 1 = 4


You easily overtake one of the fleeing bandits, knocking him to the ground and pummeling him with your hammer. He's soon unconscious.

Your bolt of ice whizzes by the remaining bandit helplessly.

You're struck by a sudden coughing fit and have to sit down for a minute. The bandit actually starts to run faster.

You successfully catch up to the fleeing bandit, only to trip and fall on a rock.

The bandit flees into the woods, and you cannot tell where he went from here. But you can no longer hear hime gallop.

Five bandits, including the bandit leader, lay unconscious on the forest floor. All of your compatriots are okay, including the teamster pony who was struck by an arrow. Juniper has healed his wound.

"Wow," says Juniper, "that was quite the show."


I take a bow.
"Thank you, thank you."


"Bah… stupid… bandit… runs too fast…"
I take a few more deep breaths to try and stop the coughing fit.


"Yeah, it was bound to happen in woods like these."


You feel a little better after one of the teamsters gives you some water.

"My son has asthma, too," he says.


"I don't have asthma!"


Roll #1 18 = 18


"Well, I told you we were strong didn't I?" I grin and check the bandits for loot "you got some rope?"


You're right. You don't have asthma.


"Then what was all that?"


"A coughing fit… the air's full of something or something!"
I stomp my hoof on the ground, annoyed.


We're probably going to pause here for the night. We'll pick up soonish.

You're all awarded a skill point to spend. Spend it however you like. And if you have any questions regarding skill points, please feel free to ask.


I'll put it into Bluff.


I'll spend mine on Weapon Proficiency: Shield.


File: 1369790063927.png (467.63 KB, 1000x898, 1368159690126.png, IO Google TinEye)

Venturing north on a trade mission to the Blue Leafs, a wealthy clan that has been in the pass for generations, your party stumbled into a bandit ambush (and also had a brief escapade with an injured fox). You defeated the bandits without incident, and five of them lay unconscious around you. However, a sixth bandit escaped deeper into the forest.

Juniper, the trader from your clan appointed as a negotiator for the mission, speaks up.

"We've got to decide what to do with these bandits. If we leave them here, they might harass us later."

You all also have one skillpoint to spend. Please tell me how you're going to spend it (or if you're just going to save it) in your first post.


I'll drop the point into heal. That'll put me at a +1, I think.
"Well, we could just kill them, but perhaps if we wake them up one at a time, they might listen to reason."


I'll put another point into Shield Proficiency then.
Which should bring me up to a +1 when I use it offensively now, yeah?
"We take them prisoner for now. If when they wake up they don't see reason, we kill them."


"We could shave them."
I'll spend it on Bluff.


I'll put the point into sling, bringing it up to 0 modifier.

Wake up from sleeping in the cart.
"Sometimes when I got lost, I met rangers and guards ponies that were looking for bandits because they had a reward for finding them. Maybe there is a reward for finding these?"


"If there is a reward for them, we could use that for buying supplies. The one that got away might bring friends on the way back, though. So we should be quick about it."


I'll put it into my weapon proficiency.

"I don't think it would look good for us to show up as a trade caravan hauling prisoners."


"Or it could show that we are capable of defending ourselves, and would be worth trading with. Additionally, it might earn us the gratitude of the hold we trade with."


"If there is a reward then we should be careful not to shave their cutemarks off."


"Maybe, if they're bugging both ends of the route."

"Now that's just wrong."


"Are you going to make a pony fur coat with it? Do you get so cold you need to borrow another ponies' coat?"


"He probably just thinks shaving them naked would be funny."
I'll walk around the unconscious bandits.
"We should probably tie them up before they awaken."


"Shave? Why in Brawn's name would we shave them?!"
I give him a confused and queer look.

I nod and grab some rope.

Roll #1 4 = 4


…I can never remember that.

Roll #1 3 = 3


I'd like to save the skill point for now.
"Wake one up and find out where their camp is, we can go clear them all out and we'll be local heroes!" I say confidently.


"What's wrong is banditry."

"What one Erumaly does with another pony's fur is his own sacred business, and also incredibly private."
I lean over and whisper in your ear.
"I'm going to leave it where it falls, but don't tell anypony."

"To mark them as bandits and teach them a lesson. We could brand them, I guess, if you are the sort of barbarian that does that sort of thing."


Correct. +1 to Heal now.

Talked about this on steam. Putting the point into dual-wielding is probably better. Is that okay final answer?

Bluff's at -1 now.

Staff's at +0 now.

Sling's at +0 now.

"Fortunately for them, I'm pretty sure they don't do that anywhere south of the Coldspire Forest back home," Juniper giggles.

"This is a Blue Leaf road, I think. It's possible that the Blue Leafs will reward us for bringing these bandits back to them.

"Or they could say that we were all trespassing on their territory. But probably they'd like it."


"I don't know what you follow, but when is shaving a punishment for robbery?"


"Then we might as well take them with us."
I'll see if I can't do a better job on those knots than Ziza. '1d20'
"They should be lucky a shave is all they get."

Roll #1 1 = 1


"Give rewards or shave cutiemarks?"
I start looking for a razor sharp enough to shave them with.

"In about a minute if I can find a razor."


"I suppose, but it doesn't really seem to teach anything."


"If this is their road, they should hire more police ponies. It's going to be annoying if we mark the time in how many bandits we meet."

"Can I play with the rope too?"


Roll #1 14 = 14


Responded on steam.

"Why are you so obsessed with shaving them? Does it… turn you on or something?"
I slowly back away from him.


"Not unless it turns you on."
I give you a sly grin.
"Of course it doesn't. I have decided that they must be shaved, so I will keep trying until I have done it or we all decide to move on."


And hey here's a roll for razor finding.

Roll #1 10 = 10


"Anyone ever tell you you're an odd one?"


As you start to tie up the lead bandit, he wakes up and headbutts you in the snout! Fortunately, the headbutt takes its toll on him, and he stays on the ground, dazed.

You quickly tie off a good knot on the bandit leader's hooves while he's dazed from his assault on Loam's face. You then tie up the rest of the bandits, as well.

"Police? You mean like guards? No clan could afford to send warriors out into the forest to guard a trade route that's hardly ever used! Maybe a whole tribe could organize something like that, but not a single clan. Not even a wealthy one like the Blue Leafs.


"Every day."


"Often enough."


"Uh, should we load the bandits into the carts, or are we leaving them here, or what?" asks the lead teamster pony.


"Load 'em up, roll 'em out."


"Load them up!"


I'll rub my nose slightly, and see if it's bleeding.
"Load them and let's move. Less chance for the escaped bandit to come back."


Your nose is bleeding a bit, but it soon stops when you stuff some cloth up there.

The teamsters nod and put the bandits onto the carts. The caravan starts moving north once more.

Everyone roll.



Roll #1 10 = 10



Roll #1 1 = 1



Roll #1 1 = 1



Roll #1 11 = 11



Roll #1 7 = 7



The journey north is a quiet one – much quieter than your previous days in the forest. The woods are immense, and while the trees are smaller and younger than those of your homeland, the forest is no less impressive.

On your fourth day of travel, the forest suddenly stops on an escarpment, and below you the landscape opens up onto a rolling plain. Seemingly every acre that stretches before you is covered in wheat or oats, and far off in the distance you can see both the Blue Leaf village and their famous orchard, two green jewels on the horizon.

Your caravan follows one of the thin dirt roads that cuts through the farmlands, passing by numerous small outposts and farmhouses. The ponies you see stop to gawk at you, but they do not greet you with anything but a wave.

The Earthen Hoof caravan soon encounters a patrol of Blue Leaf warriors, however, galloping up the road to you. They hold up their hooves and shout for you to stop.

"These are the lands of the Blue Leaf clan. Why do you come here?" asks one of the warriors.

She, like the others, is dressed in a shirt of iron scales and wears an iron helmet that covers most of her face. These sorts of helmets were typically worn by Earth Pony auxiliaries in Pegasus armies back in the homeland, but the Blue Leaf helmets are more ornate than the utilitarian garb of the Earth Pony soldiers.


"We come for peaceful trade. And to drop off bandits for bounties, if they've any on them."


"To trade and deliver captured bandits to justice."


"What they said."


"To trade!"



The warriors look over your caravan and see the bandits bound and gagged in the back.

"Trade is good. Captured bandits are better. Keep traveling on this road, and you will reach the village by midday.

"The clan will be pleased, I am sure."

She's awfully understated.


"I should have asked if she knew a good stew vendor. Now I might never find out."


"Thank you."
And if we're moving again, I'll just keep pace.
"I'm sure there will be plenty in their town."


"it was a pleasure to meet you."
I give a deep bow then continue on my way.


"Hey, if things go well we might even get a feast."


"If they did, what would you like to eat? What's your favorite food?"


"…you know, I never really thought about it. How often do we really get to sit down and eat a real meal nowadays?"


"There are plenty of fields full of grass, grain, and vegetables back home."


"Yeah…but barely any time to cook up something anymore."


"There will be time, once our hold has grown. Even unicorn cities aren't built in a day."


You reach the village by mid-day, just as the warriors said. The village sits on the shore of a small lake fed by a creek running from the east, and both the lake and their large orchard blow blue-green in the noonday sunlight. The village itself is green for another reason: most of the buildings in the village are made of earth, and from their roofs spring grasses and wildflowers. Only a few buildings are made of more permanent materials: two large temples and the clan hall, all in the center of town.

Surrounding the village is a thick wooden palisade guarded by a few warriors. They open the wall's gate for you, and you find yourself in the Blue Leaf village, a thick maze of earthen mounds and living plants through which many ponies mill about. None rush to great you, but many silently watch you for a while.

Soon a small party of well-dressed ponies emerges from the clan hall, flanked by warriors in the same sort of armor you saw before.

A small dark-brown mare dressed in an elaborate gilded blue robe greets you with a raised hoof.

"I am Notch, the chief of the Blue Leaf Clan. Welcome, strangers. I understand that you are here to trade, and that you bring gifts. But first there must be introductions. From where do you come?"


I'll wait until one of the other, less gaunt-looking ponies speak. If no one else does, I'll have to do it…


"We come from the Earthen Hoof clan."
I give an exaggerated bow.
"And my name is Cauthon."


I'll keep quiet. A kid shouldn't introduce her clan.


"We come from the Earthen Hoof clan, and we come bearing trade!"
I let out a boisterous laugh.
"And I am Ziza the Strong."


"I am Restful Loam, of the Earthen Hoof clan. We come bearing trade, and a hoof-full of bandits that thought our caravan weak enough to take."


"I'm Coiled Garden, recently inducted to the Earthen Hoof clan too. Are these your bandits and do they have a reward out for them?"


"Excellent, Earthen Hoofs. You are welcome here."

"Come into our clan hall, and we will talk."

"Yes, there is a group of bandits living in the forest to the south that has been harassing trade caravans.

"As for a reward… we did not offer any, no. But if you deliver them to us, perhaps we can return the favor somehow."

Warriors grab the bandits from your carts and lead them away. Notch and her entourage head into the clan hall and beckon you all to follow.

Juniper speaks up.

"If you need me to negotiate for you, just ask. I'm sure diplomacy is your purview, but if you need me to negotiate a good price with their crafters and traders for the things we need, I'm at your disposal."


I'll nod in thanks to Notch.
And to Juniper.
"That would likely be best, Juniper. Thank you."


"I think you are the most qualified at negotiating the finer details."


"We'll resort to you if our awe inspiring strength doesn't negotiate for us!"
I strike a triumphant pose.


I'll just shake my head a little.
"Ziza, words will do us more good here than muscle. Let's just leave this to Juniper's capable hooves."


"I dunno, I never heard of a trade agreement being flexed its way into ratification."


"Well then there's a first for everything!"


"Yeah, tell me how well that works out for ya, big guy."


"Can we go visit the rest of the town then?"

"What would you trade? Squash for oats? Squash tastes funny, but oats are okay."


"if it's a mare in charge of the trading he could woo her to get good deals. That is a valid tactic."


The interior of the clan hall is impressive but not overly ornate. While it is taller and larger than most of the other buildings in the village, the hall still clings to the earth like most of the clan's architecture.

Tapestries and various trophies line the walls. Carvings of famous deeds and legends are engraved into the rafters below the low-set roof.

Notch sits at the head of the Blue Leaf ring's table: A long and ancient piece of wood that looks like it was taken from some immense tree – far larger than any tree you've seen in the Pass. It must have been brought from the north. Six ponies, including Notch, sit behind it, all looking as dour as their chieftain. All except for one bouncy yellow stallion who fidgets in his seat uncomfortably.

"Your clan must be new in this land, Earthen Hoofs," says Notch. "We have been here a long time, but be warned that this is a dangerous place, even for us. You must learn to survive on your own, or the Pass will take everything you have and leave you with nothing.

"We are pleased that you brought those bandits to us. Tonight we can feast your arrival. But, first, tell us what you need from us. Food? Aid in war?"


"Yeah, about as valid as fine print."


"We have to pay our respects to the town's Circle, then after that, we should be able to look around."
I'll bow slightly.
"I believe we came mostly for supplies. Though I'm sure the others will have other suggestions."


I'll nod my head at this, but stay quiet.


"We have been sent here to seek a trade agreement. Failing that, we are here for iron."

"If it works it works, the problem is it might work both ways. Then again, an alliance is never a problem, even if it is brought about by a forced marriage."


"You sound like you speak from experience. How many girls are you on the run from, huh?"

"A trade route would be nice."


"Can you two not do this in front of the Ring? Please?"


"This is not the place for that sort of question. I thought you were more mature than that."
I give you a disproving frown.


Roll my eyes and hoofwave them on.


"We would be willing to discuss a trade route, perhaps. But it is a bit early to be establishing such formal ties with such a new clan. Perhaps it w-"

Notch stops talking when a large commotion erupts outside. One of the warriors bursts into the clan hall.

"Chief Notch! The bandits! They've escaped! One of them had a knife and cut his bonds while we weren't looking. He knocked out the warrior guarding him and took him and a few craftsponies hostage. The bandits are holed up in the smithy with their captives!

"They planned this!" he shouts, pointing his hoof at all of you.

Notch looks aghast at you.


"That's preposterous."
I'll turn to Ziza.
"Didn't any of you search them for weapons while tying them up?"


"I.. I just tied them up."


"Nope. In fact, I'm going to solve this."
I disguise myself as their clan leader.

Roll #1 16 + 1 = 17


"You couldn't have known, and you tied them up well. It's just someone should have been checking for less obvious weapons."
I'll look back to Notch.
"If you'll give us a chance to rectify this error, we could make this right."


I look at them, aghast.
"What? What?! How dare you accuse us of that! We had no intentions of betraying you! We merely came to trade, just as we said!"


"We got 'em once, we can do it again."



"Well they are in the smithy now…what do you have in there that they might try and steal?"


You scuff up your face with dirt and put a scowl on your face. It's all in the attitude, really.

You look almost exactly like the bandit leader. It's pretty remarkable.

"You must have given him the knife!" yells the warrior.

"Silence, Dustmane. You have no proof of that," says Notch.

"I doubt you planned any sort of betrayal, Earthen Hoof clan. But nonetheless, you brought these bandits into our midst."

"If you believe that you can free our hostages and defeat the bandits, then I am willing to give you the chance.

"But if you fail, we won't be rendering aid to your clan any time soon."

Juniper glances up from searching for her dagger.

"It's more likely that they'll try to bargain their way out of the village: Threaten to kill the hostages if the Blue Leafs don't let them go."


>clan leader


"And for that, we apologize."
I'll look at Cauthon and Ziza.
"How do you propose we go about this? Pretend to go along with their demands, and then once the hostages are free we kill the bandits where they stand?"


oh, whoops

Uh, you find a dark blue rug and place it around your neck like a robe. You adopt a dour expression and apply some mud to your coat to make it darker.

You look almost exactly like Notch. A tad beefier, but no one would really notice.


"Alright, here's the plan. You exchange me for the hostages and let them leave town. Once they get out of town I take care of them."


"That's… remarkable," say Notch and Juniper in unison.


"Thank you, thank you."
I give a few theatrical bows.
"Now lets hurry this up before the wrong ponies get hurt."


"Huh. I could actually get behind this."


"Why not try to lead them into an ambush? They'd probably think we aren't around to fight them again, and then we surprise them?"


"That… actually sounds like a reasonable plan."
I give him a blank and surprised look.


I'll nod.
"For once, Cauthon, you've had a good idea."


"The ambush will be once they're out of the town, and away from any innocent bystanders. Then we will fall on them like a boulder on a newt."


"I've got that covered too, but backup never hurts."


"Well, just don't get stabbed too early. I can heal, but I can't raise the dead."


"You sure?"


"Why would they kill a hostage they could ransom back later?"

"Of course I'm not sure."


"Because I've grown up with you and I've felt like stabbing you on more than one occasion. So try not to be… you?"


I gesture at my myself with my hoof while clearing my throat.


"Looks are only half the act, Cauthon."


I roll my eyes.


"Less than half, if you ask me. Maybe about thirty percent?"


I'll shrug.
"I'm a doctor, not an actor."


I look very irritated "Why aren't we just going in and fighting them? We can take em', it will barely even be a challenge."


"But, what about the other ponies? They might get scared and hurt themselves, or get hurt by the bandits before we can get to save them."


"Because they have hostages. And as I've said, I can't raise the dead."


"Hostages and property damage that we would be responsible for."

"If they ask why you are giving them your clan chief try to think on your hooves."


"If you get our kinsponies killed, I don't think we need to tell you that we'll be very unhappy," says Notch.

If you're ready, you can all step out to the smithy. Notch will stay back here in the clan hall in order to let Cauthon do his thing, if he chooses.


"Oh is that what we brought him for? I thought he was the barber."


"Only a weakling hurt's themselves in fear, and weaklings can't put much force behind their attack so its nothing to worry about." I assure you giving you a pat on the head. "And you're no weakling so you won't have to worry about it."
"Fine, but I don't like this sneaky plan, Cauthon can't conjure a weapon, and will be helpless if found out."


"Which is why we assist once he's away from the hostages. That's all."
I'm pretty much ready.


"Shut up and lead me out. A few of the guards need to lead me out to so that the exchange can be made."


"Fine, fine. Just try to keep your razor sheathed until you get out of the village, huh?"


"Thanks, but everyone trusts Cauthon to get the hostages out in a jiff, right? Once, they're out, we can pound 'em just how you like."


Notch assigns a few guards who flank you closely.

"If you have any instructions for us, now is the time, uh, Chief," one of them says to you.


I squint my eyes a bit "Don't you worry about it kid, just.. uh.." I look around for a ball or something '1d20' "find something to play with while we take of it."
"Go flush em' out for me okay?" I give Cauthon a slap on the back for good luck

Roll #1 13 = 13


"I'm not that little. You can't bribe me with a ball."
All the while, keep looking at the ball.
"I can fight too. We'll all beat them up and then we'll get a feast and everyone will be happy."


"I'm not sure if that was an innuendo or if you somehow mistook my club for a razor."

"Hoof me over to them in exchange for the prisoners. Tell them the clan is tired of me being their chief and that this is the easiest way to get rid of me."

I wince.


"Are you ready?"

Are you all ready?


I'm ready, though I don't quite know what I'm to be doing while I wait for Cauthon to either succeed or fail.
I really hope I don't have to use this sword…



I toss you my club.


I scratch my head.
"I guess if the little pony wants to fight, we let her. The only way to become strong is through struggle after all!"



Resist the ball and ready for action.


"What? Bribe?" I put a hoof to my face look surprised "Coiled, please. I just thought you'd be bored of all this grown up talk already. Here catch!" I toss the ball to you gently.


"I guess we'll just have to find out."

Ready. I'll just sit there and try to look tough I guess.


"She can stick close to me, then. I don't plan to be in the thick of it, but if it happens, well… better than being caught by myself."


I smirk "I'm always ready."
good to go


"I'll protect you, I promise."


I'll just pat her head a little.
"Well, let's hope it doesn't come to that."


"What a cute couple."


The guards lead you all out to the smithy. A ring of warriors stands in front of it, swords and shields drawn, ready to storm the building at any moment. A large crowd has gathered to watch.

"Bandits, we've brought you a new hostage!" yells the lead warrior.

After a moment, you hear a voice call out from inside. "Wot?! We don't need no new hostage!"

"We've brought you our chief. We don't want her anymore, but she's worth a lot more than those ponies in there. If you take her, we'll let you leave our lands unharmed. Just give her back when you're done."

A bandit head pokes out from the inside of the smithy. He stares at "Notch" for a moment…

Roll #1 16 - 5 = 11


"Yes, the walking corpse and a child. Obviously a match made in heaven."
I'll roll my eyes.
And there it goes…


"Alright, deal," he says. "Bring her here."

He beckons Cauthon to come into the smithy. A few other villager faces appear at the smithy's door. Looks like they'll push them out if you come in.


I shake my head "Coiled, I think you're prefect for a very important mission. Guard the stuff in case the bandits sneak up on it, we need that stuff to trade, its very important.."


I go inside.


stare down those bandits.


"Don't we already have ponies doing that? And I can fight too, I've fought Giant Spiders before, Bandits are nothing."


"But that's why I want you to do it, because you're so strong! Those other ponies need you coiled."


They push the other hostages out of the smithy. They run into the crowd and rejoin their crying loved ones.

It's all very touching.

He catches a glimpse of your glare as he pulls Cauthon inside. He sticks his tongue out at you.

The inside of the Smithy is almost totally dark. The fire is out and the windows are shut. But you can see that all of the bandits are here, including their leader. He smacks you in the back of the head as you come inside.

"NO TRICKS!" he says.

"Colts, let's prepare to move. Get your things. Grab some weapons. Anythin' will do."


"Is now really the time for this, Striker?"


I just nod my head. While temporarily blinded by the darkness I lightly bump into each of the bandits.


I fidget in anticipation as I wait for the strike.
"So when are we going to attack?!"


"I don't know. It's Cauthon's show for now."


I scrape my hoof against the ground "Soon I hope, I know which one I'll be going after first"


"Fine by me."


They're bumped into.

"Alright, here's the plan. We leave, we take this mare with us, and then when we're at the forest we'll leave her and run. Any questions?"

The bandits shake their heads.

"Okay, let's go."

You're led out of the smithy. The warriors and crowd eye the bandits carefully and part, allowing them to move out of the town square and out of the village.

It's a few hours of walking from here to the forest from here. The warriors (and presumably our party?) follow the bandits.

Continue from here, or does anyone have something they'd like to try?


This is Cauthon's plan. I'm just waiting for some kind of signal.


I let them get to the forest, or at least far enough away from the town so that we cannot be seen very well, before starting my plan.


You're at the very edge of the forest. There's a small hut nearby constructed of earth that looks like it's used by the clan's gatherers and warriors on patrols. There are various trees.


Roll #1 15 = 15



"Alright, let's go!" says the leader of the bandits.

"Wait," says one of the others, "If we take her with us, we could ransom her back! Or at least have a slave or something, right?"

"You idiot, Dirteye! What would we need a slave for?"

"I don't know, for laundry and stuff. I'm tired of scrubbing blankets and your dirty armor."

The bandits are bickering right now.


Y'all are free to do whatever you want now, by the way, of course.


I'll draw my shiny Star Prancer sword. Hope I don't really have to use it, since I sure as hell don't know how.


"I don't think they want me back. I was cursed by a Trickster, you see, and the curse spreads by touch."
I make no attempt to disguise the pitch of my voice.


Just tense up as I wait for any signal to go in.


I just… I wait back I guess.
Or try to, at least.

Roll #1 6 = 6


It's pretty hard to hold yourself back. You feel the call of battle.


They fall silent.

"What? What are you talking about, you stupid mare?"


Can I see where they went?

Roll #1 7 = 7


You can hear them behind that hut over there, you think.


"Be at peace, Ziza. They'll feel your weapon soon enough."


"The curse can only be broken by making a pilgrimage to mount Sapphire in the proper amount of time. If you don't get there in time, it's permanent."
I sit down and spread my front legs wide so they can see what the "curse" is.

Roll #1 5 - 1 = 4


"What are you on ab- ewwwwwww it's a stallion!" cries one of the bandits.

"We've been tricked! Run!" Yells the bandit leader. The bandits begin to gallop into the forest.

But first he tries to kick Cauthon in the dick.

Roll #1 10 = 10


Grab his leg and break it.

Roll #1 8 = 8


I guess that's our cue.
And we'll descend on them.
"Here we go! And no prisoners this time!"


It is -2 for non-proficient weapons, right? Or is it -4?

Roll #1 10 - 2 = 8


Join in and aim for one of the Bandit's legs.


Roll #1 17 = 17


Run in there and HAMMER SOME FOOLS

Roll #1 13 + 2 = 15


"If you say so…"

Ice bolt the nutbuster.

Roll #1 7 = 7


Cauthon and the Bandit leader are locked in a wrestling match over his dick when Cauthon takes a bad shot to the testicles. He crumples over and doesn't post for the rest of the session ;_;

-2, RAW

You swing your pegasus sword high and charge at one of the bandits… only to trip over a root and stumble a bit. The bandit throws a rock at you in retaliation and keeps running.

5 hits

You beat the Leader's head with your loaded sling. He yowls in pain and tries to stab you with Juniper's dagger, but you're far too lithe for that nonsense, and you just bean him again.

You easily catch up to the bandit you threw that rock at your nerdy friend. You bring the hammer down on his right flank, and he's sent tumbling to the ground. He quickly springs to his hooves and draws his sword, ready for a fight.

Your crackling bolt of ice freezes the air, only to bend back towards you and give you a bit of freezer burn on your hoof. It stings a bit.

5 hits


Oh, counting the bandit leader in combat with Cauthon, etc., there are five bandits either fighting you or trying to run.


Conjure a lightening hammer. I think its a plus +1 for that, since -1 for lightening, +2 for CM?

Roll #1 3 + 1 = 4



Roll #1 4 + 2 = 6


Can't let them get away. Try and engage one of the fleeing bandits. '1d20-2'

Roll #1 9 - 2 = 7


Bean him with another rock.
CoG is active here, right?

Roll #1 8 = 8


Shake my hoof off and give him a good whack instead.

Roll #1 4 = 4


The hammer fizzles in your hooves and just leaves you with a terrible feeling of numbness.
3 hits

You rear back to deliver a killing blow, but the Bandit lunges forward and strikes you in your delicious meaty ribs.

4 hits

Yeah, it's active, of course.


Your rock goes wild and sails out of control. It strikes a nearby tree harmlessly.

The Bandit Leader draws his sword and strikes you in the rear hooves with it, slicing you open badly.

3 hits


"I won't let you escape."

Try to hit them again.


Roll #1 20 = 20


Well I guess I'll have to beat them up with my hooves. Kick a bandit in the face.

Roll #1 6 = 6



And for the second, since I know that first one didn't land, I'll disengage and go heal Fortunes. '1d20+1'

Roll #1 7 + 1 = 8


Get him to back off!

Roll #1 2 = 2


You flail around with your staff trying to force him to retreat, but you only succeed in leaving several openings for him to stab you. He jabs you in the side, and you fall to the ground, helpless.

2 wounds

You deliver a terrific whack to his head, and he's out cold. His breathing seems a bit shallow, but he's still alive.

You gallop after Ziza's target and try to deliver a flying kick to his face. Unfortunately you miss wildly and fly straight into an enormous oak tree. You feel a little woozy.

2 hits

You pray to Nightstar to heal your friend, but all you feel is a foreboding silence.


Fire hasn't failed me yet, summon a fire hammer.

Roll #1 16 + 2 = 18


Then I shall make that silence break. Heal Fortunes. '1d20+1'

Roll #1 10 + 1 = 11


"I-I could use some help here!"
Try and get up!

Roll #1 9 = 9


Attack the ones going after Fortune.


Roll #1 13 = 13


No, wait
Terrify them!

Roll #1 15 = 15



we'll pick it up when/if I feel like it


I crack the downed bandit's head with my club.

Roll #1 13 - 1 = 12


When we last left our heroes, you were all fighting the escaped bandits.

Currently, the bandit leader is knocked out cold, while Ziza is attacking another bandit. The rest are busy fleeing into the woods.

Your flaming hammer erupts forth from the aether and lands in your hooves. +2 to attacks with it.

Your aid momentarily dulls Fortunes' pain, but does little to heal her wounds.

You struggle to rise to your hooves, but you immediately collapse back to the ground.

You fling a stone at one of the fleeing bandits, striking him weakly in the buttocks.

Your main stands on end, your nostrils flare, your muscles ripple, and you let out a tremendous whinny. The group of bandits before you scream in terror as they turn to see your fearsome visage. The one you are fighting falls to the ground, stricken with terror, while two others trip and fall as they attempt to flee.

You deliver a whack to the back of the leader's head. He is most certainly unconscious now.


I can heal! That's what I've trained for my entire life, why I went to Nightstar to learn! '1d20+1'

Roll #1 7 + 1 = 8


I kick him in the dick.

Roll #1 15 = 15


One more time, lash out with the sling and rock.

Roll #1 5 = 5


Let's try that again…

Roll #1 20 = 20


Chase down one of the ones attempting to run and BEAT HIS ASS DOWN.

Roll #1 19 + 2 = 21



He is very much kicked in the dick now. Were he conscioius, he would probably cry out in pain.

Nightstar doesn't answer your pleas for help. He's an enigmatic god, you know.

You prepare to unleash hell from your sling, but one of the bandits turns around and tosses a hatchet at you. You're able to dodge the worst of the blow, but it cuts you badly in the flank.

4 hits.

You leap to your hooves and channel a freezing ray from your hooves, freezing one of the fleeing bandits solid. Stuck in a solid block of ice, he won't be going anywhere.

You kick the terrified bandit in front of you and send him sprawling, and then you find one of the bandits who ran from you and whack him solidly in the head. His skull collapses in on itself, and he is very much dead.

One bandit has fled deeper into the woods, but he is now frozen solid by Cold Fortunes. The bandit leader is unconscious, another bandit is helpless and terrified of Ziza, another is attempting to scramble to his hooves, and the last is dead.


Fine. If it'll make Nightstar happy, I'll just murder the everliving fuck out of that last bandit. Maybe then I'll be able to heal! '1d20-2'

Roll #1 1 - 2 = -1


"Well it's about bloody time! That all of 'em?"


I club the one getting to his hooves.

Roll #1 16 - 1 = 15


Strike with the sling again.


Roll #1 17 = 17


I go fetch the one frozen solid and bring him back.


You both run over and bean him in the back of the head. He's out cold.

One, two, three, four, five……

Yep, that's all of them.

You run forward behind Cauthon, ready to murder the last bloodthirsty killer, only to trip on a root and hit your head.

Good thing none of the Blue Leafs were watching. That would have been most embarrassing for the Earthen Hoof Clan.

The Blue Leaf warriors gallop up behind you. Their leader speaks.

"Well, it looks like you got them. Good work! The clan leaders will be pleased."

You easily lift the frozen bandit, though hauling a solid block of ice is a bit uncomfortable. The Blue Leaf warriors all applaud your strength.

"Come with us," says the lead warrior. She's the same mare you met when you first got to the Blue Leaf lands. "The ring will want to order a feast in your honor, I'm sure."

"I'm Brighteyes, by the way," she says.


"Sounds like you've impressed her, Ziza."
I make some kissing noises as I walk with them and clean off my disguise.


I'll put away my sword.
"Bloody stupid useless chunk of metal…"
Sighing, I'll fall into step behind the others, and keep talking to myself.
"Though, I suppose it's the one using it that matters most…"


"Feast, feast!"
I shout as I jump around.

"You okay? I did promise to protect you. You aren't hurt are you?"


Roll my eyes.
"Yeah, sure. Take what you can get, big guy."


I'll give her a small, unenthusiastic smile.
"Yes, you kept your word. Good job."


I grin and let out a laugh.
"Ziza the Strong, if I haven't already introduced myself!"
I dump the ice down by the rest of the bandits.

I just shake my head at his comment.


"You're alive and not bruised anywhere uncomfortable. rejoice, because we are about to be feasted."

I make the noises even louder and pantomime hugging somepony before stopping and scratching an ear with my hoof.


The Blue Leaf warriors gather up the surviving bandits. A small detachment of warriors leads the bandits out further into the woods. Knowing earth pony custom, you doubt the bandits will return.

As you return to the Blue Leaf village, Notch and the Blue Leaf Ring great you.

"Thank you, Earthen Hoofs. You rescued our kinsponies and brought the bandits to justice. Tonight we will celebrate your bravery and skill, as well as our good fortune in finding you. I hope that our two clans will forge new bonds of friendship over the coming years."

In the center of the village, the Blue Leafs construct a large bonfire, and many tables and blankets are brought out for the coming feast. You can smell the baking of pies and fresh bread, as well as dishes of vegetables, wildflowers, nuts, and honey. The feast is enormous compared to the relatively meager meals the Earthen Hoof village has prepared over the past few months.

You all have seats of honor next to the Clan Ring. In celebration of his ingenious plan to free the hostages, Cauthon is given a traditional wreath of wheat and barley to wear around his neck.

Everyone at the feast agreed that the Blue Leafs and the Earthen Hoofs would be good friends in the future, and that the prospects for trade were good. Tomorrow, Juniper will negotiate for what the clan needs, but she is confident, she says, that they will give you what you want.

You're free to roleplay a bit if you like, talk to the Blue Leafs or each other or even explore around the village. I might be a bit slow, but I'll be willing to go for a while if you like.


I will accept their gracious hospitality. And focus mostly on my food. I doubt many of the Blue Leaf clansponies would much appreciate someone like myself to bother them while they eat.


I enjoy myself and act civilly.


I'll focus on the food for now.


A feast?
A feast!
It is only proper to partake. So I partake!
I laugh heartily and eat heartily! Eat enough for ten ponies!


Are there any kids to play with?


You all feast on the prepared food. Wine flows and there is much merriment.

There are many smaller fillies and colts running around the outskirts of the feast. A small group of slightly older children about your age, on the cusp of adulthood, are eating at their own table nearby.


Let's go meet some of the older kids and introduce ourselves as one of the Earthen Hoofs.


"Hey," says one of the young stallions. A few of the others greet you with half-hearted hoof waves or a simple mane-flip.

"Lame party, huh? I guess you're with the ponies from out of town. I'm Sunwalker. Who are you?"

Sunwalker seems to be the leader of the bunch, but all of them seem pretty disaffected and bored, not really looking at you or him.


I look around as I enjoy the feast.
Do I see anyone of interest?


Well, I suppose I could mingle… I'll excuse myself from the table, and walk around a bit. Maybe get a little closer to the bonfire.


I look around. Are there any Tricksters here?


A lot of ponies are lying on the ground, passed out from too much drink and too much food.

You see the Blue Leaf warriors at the other end of your table. You also see Brighteyes there. She's making googly eyes at you…

…or maybe she's having a stroke. You can't really tell from this distance. You've had a lot to drink, too.

There are a lot of ponies lying near the fire. Though it's early summer, the night air is still chilly, and the bonfire feels nice and warm.

You can see the light casting shadows onto the two temples in the center of town. One is clearly a temple to Heartpetal – hence the engravings of hearts, flowers, mares in various stages of pregnancy, and earth pony families.

The other seems to be a temple to Light Chaser, the Pegasus goddess of the sun. There is a large sun carved above the temple's doorway, and huge windows would let a great deal of light into the temple during the day.

Seated to your right, a few seats down, is the same yellow stallion you saw earlier on the Blue Leaf ring. Judging from his attempts to place a fake spider on the mane of one of the other ring members, you'd guess that he could be another trickster.


Spin about in place, and go:
"I'm Coiled Garden, recently inducted member of the Earthen Hoof clan."

"You think this is a lame party? What do you do for fun then?"


I can't be drunk! I can outdrink ten ponies!
I approach Brighteyes.
Rolling for drunkness.

Roll #1 1 = 1


"Oh, yeah, totally lame. It's a stupid clan party, you know how it goes," he casually flips his mane.

"If we want to have fun, we tend to go out behind the warriors' lodge and drink their wine," he whispers.

You are stone cold sober.


I strike up a conversation with that ring member to distract them from the yellow stallion's attempts.

Roll #1 7 = 7


Aww yeah.
I march on over to that mare then.
"So, you're Brighteyes?"


I'll nod towards the temples. I may not be their follower, but I can respect their patrons.
I suppose I'll wander a bit around, taking care not to step on anyone, but not leaving the light of the fire. There certainly are a lot of them.


You waggle your hooves in front of the older stallion and try to get his attention, but he somehow sees through your ploy and whips around to stare at the yellow stallion.

The trickster, however, has quickly hidden the fake spider behind his back, and puts on an entirely blank expression.

"Dammit, Hillclimber, what were you trying to do?!" shouts the old timer.

"Nothing, Sparkles, I promise," says Hillclimber.

The old stallion grumbles something and goes back to his drink. "…not to call me that…. right in the gullet…"

Hillclimber leans back in his seat and gives you a wink.

You have some difficulty navigating the maze of bodies around the feast, and you stumble across several poor ponies on your way to Brighteyes. A few ponies shout at you to stop stepping on them and dragging your tail in their soup, but you ignore them, the weaklings.

"Sho, yooooooooooo're…. Bright (hic) eyeshh, huh?" you ask.

She giggles at you.

"Yeah, that's right. And you're very drunk, Ziza."


That there are. Roll.


Oh bother. '1d20'
My apologies to any I step on.

Roll #1 17 = 17


I give an exaggerated yawn and wink back at him before standing up and leaving the tables for a dark spot away from the fire.


"I'm not drunk! I can outdrink ten ponies! Twenty even!"
So… this mare. How does she look?

Roll #1 13 = 13


You just manage to avoid stepping on a mare who is evidently reading in front of the fire.

A quick glance at her book tells you that it seems to be a copy of the Black Tome, one of the most holy books in the Nighstarite discipline.

"Shi'm not DRUNK!" you shout. A few ponies around you laugh heartily.

She's a pretty attractive mare, save for a few scars that mar the light blue coat on her flanks and legs. Muscled and toned, a little larger than most of the other mares you know. She's about your age, you think. At least that's what you remember thinking before you got completely wasted on pear wine.

You find a space to sit on a blanket a few yards back from most of the other ponies. Hillclimber trots over to meet you a minute later, carrying two cups in his mouth.

The traditional Trickster greeting is mutual pranks


Let's see if I can disguise myself as him before he gets here.

Roll #1 14 + 1 = 15


I'll blink a few times.
"Well, that's certainly unexpected, finding somepony who reads of Nightstar."


"You know… you're really pretty Brighteyes."
I let out another laugh and take another swig of booze.


'1d20' rolling for how drunk I've been getting

Roll #1 17 = 17


Before he arrives, you pull out some yellow paint from your makeup kit and smear it on your face. A few carefully-placed hairpins and a constant smirk complete the illusion.

He does a double-take as soon as he sees you before almost doubling over with laughter.

"I can see why the bandits believed you were Notch! Here, try this. It's my grandmother's special recipe."

He passes over one of the cups.

"I'm a follower of the Dark Watcher" she says in a dull monotone. She looks you up and down, paying attention to your clothing.

"Are you one of his priests, too?" she asks, excitedly. Well, her monotone warbles a bit.

"Yoooo know (hic)… yoooor rrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrreallllly pretty, Brighteyeshhh."

She giggles again before taking a drink of booze, herself.


You're just tipsy enough to be enjoying yourself.



Roll #1 1 = 1


I'll nod.
"And the only one in our clan. How about yourself?"
I'll take a seat next to her.


"I can't wait."
I take the cup and drink it all in one gulp.


Is.. is the party spinning? You hit the ground with a thud, completely drunk off your ass.

You can roll to wake up, but I'd like to start finishing this stuff up, so this is a good stopping point for you, don't you think?

"Mm. Likewise. I studied with the Firewhistle Clan a few years ago. They're devoted to Nighstar, you know, and when they came into this valley, they established the only shrine to him outside of the old country."

Ohgodsittastessohorriblegetitoutgetit- wait…

It's water.

Hillclimber giggles. "See, you'd be expecting a prank, and so the only real prank is to not pull one!" He laughs at his own joke for a while.


"Ha, what a party!" I say joyfully.


"The Firewhistle clan?"
I'll make a small mental note of that.
"How lucky of you. I had to go about it mostly on my own. You'd be surprised at how talkative a graveyard can be."


Eh, I'll just roll to wake up and it can be assumed that the rest of the night just ends in drunken shenanigans.

Roll #1 17 = 17


I laugh too.
"I almost tried to take your drink instead. How about we take some food and drink and talk shop? I think I'm the only trickster in my clan and it would be good to talk to another goat follower."


You wake up a few minutes later with Brighteyes standing over you.

"C'mon, lightweight, I'll take you back to the Warriors' Hall."

"The ancestors will speak if you are willing to listen to them. When times are tough, the Ring often has me speak to our ancestors for advice."

The two of you talk until the break of dawn.

The feast lasts all night. In the morning, the clan gradually shuffles into their homes before shutting the door and napping until late in the afternoon. It's not until a few days later that Juniper gets around to actually negotiating the trades, but within the week you all have the materials your clan needs.

We'll pick up from there on Tuesday, probably. If you want your character to do something while you're in the Blue Leaf village, just talk to me and we can work something out so you can have a chance to finish it before y'all get back to the Earthen Hoofs.



File: 1372037576104.jpg (55.02 KB, 524x800, 1331452629127.jpg, IO exif Google TinEye)

Your trip to the Blue Leaf clan has gone well, despite (or perhaps because of) the bandits' escape and the resulting hostage situation. The Earthen Hoof clan has gained a new ally, you have all met some new friends, and Juniper has negotiated a good trade deal for the clan.

You have spent the last few days in the Blue Leaf village, but it is now time to leave. Juniper and the cartponies are waiting outside the village's pallisade, prepared to haul all of the clan's new tools and iron back to your home.

The Blue Leaf clan's ring is also here, waiting to wish you a formal goodbye.

The day is young and the morning sun shines down on the green and flowered roofs of the Blue Leaf village. The sky is clear and you should be able to make it back to the Earthen Hoof clan territory in a few days travel.

There is still time for you to finish any business you have with the Blue Leafs, if you like.


Where's that mare from last night?


I'll bid my farewells to that other Nightstar follower.


I think I have gotten everything I need from Hillclimber. I'll wish him farewell then I'll be ready to go.


Say goodbye to the other kids that were there.


I'll say my goodbyes and hurry on to the cart, it will be nice to get home.


Brighteyes is standing with the ring. She waves at you.

You say goodbye to Sunflower.

"Travel safely, Loam. Take this with you."

It's a shiny obsidian disc shined to almost a mirror polish – a frequent talisman among earth ponies but especially amongst Nightstar devotees.

You exchange farewell japes and kick-me signs before you find the cart ready to leave.

The cart is ready to go. You can see all of the tools Juniper traded for. They look like they're of good quality.

You say goodbye to some of the other colts and fillies.


I'll take it graciously.
"Thank you, Sunflower. I shall guard it well. I hope we can speak again in the future."
I'll smile a little sadly.
"I do wish I'd brought something I could give to you in return, though."


Head back to the carts and check if the napping spot I used on the way here is still available.


"Don't worry about it. You're our guests, after all. Be well."

She smiles and gives you a little hug.

You'll need to clear away some of the hammers and anvils, but there's room for you to lie down.


I'll return it.
"Be safe, Sunflower."


"The others might not be too happy if I move the stuff around. Guess I gotta hoof it too."


"Are all of your ready for the fun fun fun trip home?"
I cackle.


I stand by the cart and give Coiled a little pat on the head. "Ready for the long walk home?" I whisper "It won't hurt the equipment to be moved a little if you want to sleep ."


"The one's pulling the carts have enough to worry without adding me to it. It would be mean of me if I did."

"I'm ready! Any bandits that show up will get a walloping."


"Oh yes. Fun."
I'll roll my eyes a little.
I'll smile a little at that.
"I'm sure they will, Garden."
And I'm pretty much ready to go.


"It will be fun if we run into more bandits." I smile.


"For you, perhaps, but I'm the one who has to patch you all up when you get hurt."


I wave back at her.
"Well, it looks like my frie- companions wish to get an early start on our journey home, so I guess this is goodbye. It was a pleasure meeting you!"
I let out a joyful laugh.


I ruffle your mane.
"What a responsible little filly."

"Oh you'll enjoy it I'm sure."


She laughs, too.

"Have a good journey, Ziza! Maybe we'll meet again soon."

If everyone's ready we can leave.


"I'd like that."
I smile at her.



Smile at this.
"Time to go home!"


Ready whenever you are.





You all depart the Blue Leaf village and head back south, towards the forest and home. It is not quite noon before you reach the tree line, and you make good time through the forest path.

Everyone roll, please.



Roll #1 4 = 4



Roll #1 10 = 10



Roll #1 18 = 18



Roll #1 11 = 11



Roll #1 6 = 6


You all notice that the light filters through the trees in a particularly pleasing manner here. Juniper suggests you set up camp here for the night, as it is starting to get dark.

You notice, hidden behind a rock as you walk, a lovely ceramic bowl, patterned with a distinct geometric pattern of triangles and hexagons, painted intricately so as to suggest several pony figures.


"Hey look, I found something out here. Did someone drop it when we came this way?"


I'll think a moment.
"No, I don't believe so. Perhaps the gods have decided to reward you for being a good pony, Garden."


"Not I."

"This place is rather nice."
I wander off the road and start grazing.


There are some tasty edible shrubs nearby.


"Why would any of us be carrying a uselessly decorative bowl like that?"


I look at the bowl, does it seem familiar at all?

Roll #1 7 = 7


"You really think so?"
Let's pick it up carefully. Let's see if there is a safe place to put it in the carts.

"We were going to trade, right? Someone might have liked it and offered us something for it."


"Well, to trade, most likely. It looks fairly valuable, just at a glance. It's pretty, at least."


You can't tell who made it, but it definitely doesn't look like something that the Earthen Hooves would have made. The style is all wrong. Your clan's potters prefer much more curvilinear and organic patterns.

It does look pretty valuable.

You could easily wrap it up and place it near the front of the smallest cart, away from all of the tools and anvils and metal ore.

Juniper and the rest set up the camp and get a fire going.


I start chowing down.



Let's put it away and go find some sticks for the fire.


I'll help Garden gather firewood. '1d20'

Roll #1 5 = 5


"Better be careful that fire could attract attention." I smile and keep look out. "Don't worry thou, nothing with get past me."

Roll #1 1 = 1



Roll #1 8 = 8


I help go fetch wood for the fire.
Gonna bring back an entire goddamn TREE.

Roll #1 2 = 2


Gosh… you're getting sleepy….

You find some twigs from that bush Cauthon is chowing down on. The cartponies begin burning it.

Those leaves are pretty tasty. You feel full enough that you could nod off if you weren't careful.

Not feeling satisfied with Loam's puny efforts, you uproot the whole bush and throw it on the fire.

Everyone besides Cauthon and Striker please roll again.



Roll #1 13 = 13


I honestly missed the link. Sorry

Roll #1 8 = 8


I go lie down next to the fire.


"Was that really necessary, Ziza?"

Roll #1 14 = 14




"Uh… it made the fire bigger, didn't it?"

Roll #1 18 = 18


"Yes, but if the fire gets too big, we might not be able to control it. Last thing we want to do is start a forest fire."


"Yeah, its nice and bright now.." I start to yawn but cut myself off halfway.


"A forest fire would certainly show those flutter ponies who is boss around here."


"Don't get any ideas, Cauthon. And besides, Flutterponies aren't real. They're just storybook things. Like Draconequis.


"Oh yeah, who's afraid of the big, bad merchant caravan?"


"Flutter Ponies? I've never met them. What are they like?"


I laugh at bit "Yeah, who needs a puny cart anyway. We can carry all of that ourselves."


"Hey, whoa whoa whoa. Don't put words in my mouth, especially when we have a guy with us who apparently has 'the strong' for a name."


"They all say that until they wake up with a flutter arrow in their throat."

"Horrible little forest dwellers in the shape of ponies. They kill lumberjacks and hunters that try to use their land and use evil magic to curse little colts and fillies."


oh, shit – I thought you just didn't feel like playing. I should have asked to make sure. My fault.

You begin to feel sluggish and sleepy. You lie down just to take the edge off.

You both breathe in a big whiff of the bush before noticing that it seems to make your mind buzz and go numb. There's something wrong with these leaves and twigs!

Before you can tell the others, though, you begin to hear what sound like two thunderous hooves marching through the forest. Suddenly, with an enormous crash as it swings its club to clear the brush out of the way, you hear and see a huge minotaur – half bull, half thing – roar and charge through the thicket.

"OOOS BEEN MESSIN WIT ME FUNNY BUSH?" he growls. His nostrils flare and he begins to growl at all of you.

Striker – you are extra-sluggish as a result of plant smoke. You roll at -4 to start (you can roll to recover from the effects at any time).

Ziza and Loam – neither of you are affected.

Everyone else – you roll at -2, but may roll to negate the effects.


"I'm sorry, we didn't know it was your bush. What… is it, actually? Your funny bush?"



He's quite obviously very pissed.


"Wai-what in the name of-"

Shake it off. Am I seeing things?

Roll #1 11 - 2 = 9


Hide behind Cauthon after that sudden entrance.
"Is that a Flutter Pony? He seems awfully big."
Rub my eyes to make sure I'm not sleepy.


Roll #1 11 - 2 = 9


"We hadn't intended to use all of your bush, honest! But… since it's already going, why don't you join us for dinner? And enjoy your funny bush?"


I blink a little "Ugh.. your bush smells bad." '1d20' summon a regular hammer.

Roll #1 6 = 6


You feel very mellow. Everything's just so bright and cheery. Maybe you should just lay back for a bit.

He screams again at the top of his lungs. "WHERE'S MY BOWL?"

You're going to need to roll for diplomacy of this sort.


"And what made that YOUR bush?!"


I shake my head.

I hide behind the cart and try to clear my mind.

Roll #1 8 - 2 = 6


"What did your bowl look like?"
Is it that bowl we picked up? Oh geez.
"But please, calm down…" '1d20'

Roll #1 13 = 13


Well that didn't work. I try to disguise myself as whatever god the minotaurs worship.

Roll #1 1 - 1 = 0


It was merely a ruse!

Roll #1 5 - 2 = 3


"Oh man…could you pleas just stop…stop all the shouting?"


I think my cutiemark lets me try again?

Roll #1 3 - 2 = 1


Stay close to Loam.
Try to clear the haziness from my eyes again.

Roll #1 10 = 10


Your hammer just fizzles before it goes up in a haze of smoke.


He raises his axe. If you want to resolve this in a nonviolent fashion, you'll all need to do it quickly.

You don't feel any clearer-headed. Also you feel a little gassy.

Not knowing of any minotaur gods, you dress yourself as BULLROARER OF THE THUNDERING REAR, a being of your own making. This involves a lot of rude noises and two skillfully-placed "horns" in your mane.


He seems receptive of your pleas for calm until he sees Cauthon.

"'e's MOCKIN' MAH PA!"

That's it. In his rage, he swings his mighty club at the nearest tree, splintering it instantly, before setting his eyes on all of you.

It's no good. Everything's still bleary and your every muscle is sluggish.


"WAIT, please! I think we found your bowl on the road! If we give it to you, will you forgive my very rude friend?"

Roll #1 19 = 19


Try to clear my head again.

Roll #1 18 - 2 = 16


This isn't doing me any favors. Can I clear up yet?

Roll #1 9 - 2 = 7


"We even wrapped it up Mister, so please stop being so loud."


"What is wrong with this stuff.." '1d20-4' try to regain my senses
"Look.. we didn't know it was yours.. you can have your fancy bowl back okay?"

Roll #1 6 - 4 = 2


I grumble as he smashes the tree.
"Bah! I can do that easy! You don't scare me!"


The minotaur takes a deep breath before roaring, "NOOOO–"
his eyes begin to dilate and he starts to grin.

"Yeah… okay. That'd be alright, I guess. You still killed the bush, though!"

Quickly realizing your error, you remove the twigs and stop farting. The minotaur seems to mellow out a bit at this.

Neither of you are able to shake the lingering effects, but it occurs to you that this isn't so bad, all considering.

"Yeah… so you did." He takes the bowl and unwraps it before giving it a little kiss.

"'twas a gift from me ma," he says.

He looks over at the tree he smashed.

"Oh, hell, did I do that? I'm so sorry."

The minotaur sits down by the fire and seems to drift off.


"I'm sorry about your bush."
And I'll plop down next to the wagon.
Oh sweet merciful Nightstar, that could have ended so much worse. He could have wrecked our supplies…


I pat the ground and motion for him to sit where the smoke is blowing.
"You can still enjoy the bush."


I scratch my head in confusion.
What the hell just happened?

Roll #1 5 = 5


Fetch his bowl from the cart and offer it to him.


Yeah…I guess. I do feel like this is the first thing that's gone right on this stupid trip.

Roll #1 9 - 2 = 7


If he's being nice, let's approach the fire, but keep our distance.


He's not moving a lot and seems to just be chuckling to himself.

Your head begins to clear a bit.

His own sharp eyes managed to grab it from the cart already. He's now wearing it like a hat.

You're not entirely sure, but it looks like the minotaur isn't likely to try to eat you right now.

He grins and nods at you. "Thank you, little pony. And there are always more bushes! Hahahaha!"

Juniper and the cartponies are huddling wide-eyed near the carts.

"M-maybe we should go before he comes around," says Juniper.


"You're right, Juniper. But we're taking one of those bushes if we can. Or at least a few cuttings. I want to grow a few so I can use them in the hospital I'm making. If it can do this to an enraged minotaur, just imagine what it can do for a pony who is in terrible pain."


"He seems like a fun fellow now. We should stay."


"So, gather more sticks again?"


"Not quite, Garden. I need living pieces of the bush, plus some dirt for it to stay healthy in during the trip back."


"That is also a very good idea. We could smoke the pegasi out of their clouds with these bushes."


I blink a bit confused.. "Uhh okay.."

I nod to juniper "Yeah, I don't like this funny smoke, lets get going.. The stars sure are pretty.."


I slowly nod.
"Maybe we should…"


"It's for medicinal use only, Cauthon. If I find you running off with any of it, I'll have the rest of the Ring on you for theft."


"Okay. Dirt is no problem, and my apron has plenty of places to put in saplings we find."

"Maybe this was a gift from Boulder? We were strong and protected ourselves and the others from the bandits, and now he's rewarding us!"

Hum a tune while collecting the plants.


"Not if I get my own cuttings you won't."


I roll my eyes "But its been used up. Lets just move on."


I go looking for more of the bushes.

Roll #1 6 = 6


Oh, well that's nice.

"How fast you gonna go through them?"


"There are other bushes. We only need three or four sprouts."
I'll scout for more of those "funny bushes" as well. '1d20'

Roll #1 14 = 14


"I'll help."

Roll #1 13 = 13


"I could sell them."


You pull some stems and seeds from near the fire.

You both find enough for your purposes.

"Shhh. Let's go before he realizes you took more!" Juniper says.


"I don't know why you want them.. I feel weak, and feeling weak is the worst possible thing."


I wait for them to cool before putting them in my saddle bags.
"Let's go."


"If you're not strong enough to keep walking, then just lie down in the back of the wagons."


Nod and head towards the carts.

"I found a good napping spot if you're interested."


"Finally." I whisper.
"Ha, I'm a Striker, I don't need such things." I walk along side the wagon subtly leaning on it once in a while


"I'm sure you could."


"Or. Or. Here me out. Whenever traders or whatever come to visit us we leave them alone in a room, and funnel a bit of the smoke from these bushes into it. After a few minutes we get rid of the smoke and let our traders or whoever talk to them."


"That's unethical. And not something we want to be known for."


I scrunch up.
"You can't possibly feel weak! You're one of the strongest ponies I know next to me!"

Do i notice her leaning?

Roll #1 11 = 11


Tell me when y'all are ready to get back home.


She seems a little off-kilter, but that's probably because the path is uneven.


"Where do you come up with these ideas?"


I'm ready.
"It's Cauthon. The more outlandish the idea, the more likely it is he'll think of it."


"Well they wouldn't know we were doing it of course."

"They are given to me by the cloven hoof of the goat himself."


"Stories have a way of spreading. Especially about something as odd as that would be."


"Do we any room to plant these, or will we have to ask one of the farmers if we can borrow his field?"


"Of course! I'm still plenty strong." I smile staring a bit longer than usual "You have a very strong scrunchy muscle" I say giving you a little poke.


The minotaur defeated, you all arrive back in Earthen Hoof territory in a few days. The village seems to have grown in the weeks since you left – a few more houses dot the farms around the village, and construction on the new hall for the warriors has come along well.

When you arrive in the village, Chief Thornshaker greets you all.

"Welcome home!" he says. "I see your mission was successful. I hope the Blue Leafs treated you well."


"I plan on planting them near my home, and near the site of the hospital. That way, the supply would be close to where I can study it, and close to where it is needed. And it won't be wiped out in one unlucky chance."
"Exceedingly. Though helping them with a bandit problem fostered that attitude. You can actually thank Cauthon for that."



"Then we would get ponies who come to our village just to see it and smell the strange smoke. They could buy things from our craftsponies with whatever trade goods they bring. We could call those ponies…"
I tap my chin with my hoof a few times.
"I know. We could call them tourists."


Nod my head with a smile.


"That's even more ridiculous than finding Flutterponies, Cauthon. Tourists. Ha."


"It was indeed, we defeated a bunch of bandits, earning their respect with ease. "


"They became much more friendly after I dressed up like their clan leader. We even met a minotaur."

"No genius is appreciated in his home clan."


I chuckle.
"I am the strongest pony in all the lands after all."
I smile back at her.

I let out a boisterous laugh.
"Ha! They treated us like kings! We took care of a bandit problem from them and earned their utmost respect and loyalty!"


"Well I suppose we technically did do that…"


"They even had a festival for us."



"Good, good," he says. "We need allies.

"We have another issue for you all to address, however. Please, follow me into the clan hall."

He heads into the hall and beckons you to follow.


I put an arm over you shoulder and join your laughter. "Like rice pudding they were."
"Of course we did, or did you forget when you were drinking during that big dinner?"


I'll nod.
"Juniper, could you see that the plants get stored safely? I'll set to planting them once we've attended to clan business."


I calm down and follow him.


I follow.


I follow him.


I'll hoof over what I have too.

"Wait for me."


"They threw a festival for us! Did you already forget?"

I throw my own leg over her shoulder and laugh.
"Ha! Exactly!"

I follow.



You enter the Clan Hall and small pile of apples – blue apples – arranged on the Ring's table.

"We found these apples in the forest. The colts who found them said that they don't know what trees they come from – they were windfalls, but no apple trees were nearby.

"I ate one, and so did some of the colts, and it's a pretty sour and tangy fruit. We could try planting them, or we could just give them over to the bakers. They might keep well, though, and we could trading them later."


"Can we plant a hoof-full of them, and then have the others prepared? It's best not to put all our apples in one basket, as it were."


>and small
and see a small pile


I pick one up examining the color. "Sour and Tangy.. These are a gift from Brawn. We should plant them near his temple." I declare.


"Yeah, I agree. Plus the bakers would need time to experiment with them, wouldn't they?"


"I wonder what the bread would taste like?"

"Yeah, it would be bad if they turned out to be really delicious in bread, but we had eaten them all and had none left."


"Er… why don't we just plant them now? So we have more in the future to trade and cook with?"

I perk up.
"Gilded is right! They are a gift from Brawn and we should most definitely plant them near his temple!"
I let out a laugh and grab her with a leg and give her a hug.


"Plant them."


I Laugh and return your a hug. "YES, I'm glad someone else can recognize a gift when he sees it. We could personally plant the first one! "


"Well, they could be bad. What if they hurt the soil or strangle our other saplings?"


"Then we plant them somewhere away from the other plants, as a trial. If they prove harmful, we simply burn them out without risking the other crops."


"But brawn's gifts wouldn't be bad.." I frown. "you can plant them in a clay pot at first if you're worried about it that seriously." I think for a bit "What do the farmers think?"


"Plant them in the middle of town where nothing else is growing."


"Some want them planted, but others think they're a trick sent by evil spirits."


I frown.
"If a gift from Brawn does such a thing… then that just means we need stronger crops!"


"Which is why we should be cautious. Plant a few of them a little ways away from the main town, and away from the other crops. See how they grow. If they prove harmful to the land, then we remove them."


I shake my head "This apple is real, not a trick. We're planting at least half of them."


"So, except for Cauthon's suggestion of planting them in the middle of town, you all seem to want to plant them somewhere outside of the current orchard, yes?"


"Ridiculous. Spirits would have more prudent ways to take us out."



"Yup. We want to keep everyone safe, so we should keep them far away if they turn out to be bad."


"Yes. As a safety precaution. If they prove to be safe, we can start mixing them into the general population, so to speak."


I nod.


"Fine then. We'll plant most of them and send the rest to the bakers."

Pausing here. Thanks for playing, everyone. We'll pick it up again soon.


It was fun once we stopped rolling the dice.

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