Amy, Flaming, Flow, Rus Tea, Blessings, Onion, Box and Renee
Observer, Shei, Pryce, River, Wireframe, Spitshine, Zjetya and Volkama/Deriva
>All at full H/W
Last time on HQ…https://desuarchive.org/mlp/thread/28519233/#28521286
The party split early in the morning, when demons are at their weakest. The group led by Observer, Pryce and Shei went north to search for the Crystal Workshop and investigate why someone was trying to lead Sugar there. The others investigated the gory remains of a fight in the previous night; a demon witness explained that it was the outcome of when a demon tried to hit on Vizsla, who is apparently now Count Imaal's lover; one of Vizsla's travelling companions obliterated the would-be suitor. Amy, Flaming and Flow led their group northeast, where the killers went, reasoning that they would know of Mudi's whereabouts. >>677655>>677657
After passing an inspection gate and getting directions from a starfish demon, you reached the Crystal Workshop, finding it locked, its occupants (if any) unresponsive to knocks on the front gate. The ancient stone walls were dripping with the strange green Witchbone Afterglow. Spitshine led you around the cobblestone plaza and sought out an unlabeled entrance on the side; after picking the lock, a pile of furniture, serving as a blockade, tumbled onto him.
Spitshine emerges from the pile with a mild whine, his hide only lightly bruised. "Some lock…"
This entry is old and a layer of scum rests on the floor. The end of the hall comes to a T-junction, and along the walls rest all kinds of trinkets and charms from a myriad of cultures; tools for exorcising demons and warding off evil spirits. There is no source of light near, so you cannot see far down either junction.>>677656>>677654https://youtu.be/MEYqUDhmiu8
You entered the Ivory Spindle; the hub of transport routes, shuttle lanes and elevators used as a nexus for many forms of transport and trade in Vitral. The doors had been blown off, the lights snuffed and all was covered in the rust of disrepair and abandonment. The air was stuffy and thick with the stink of mold and flesh. After navigating a bit, you crossed a doorway blocked by thick slimy strands. Your only light source was Blessings' glowing scimitar.
The faint sound makes an erratic series of toneless pulses, too faint to count; they seem both near and far; close yet indistinguishable. A sharp metallic creak vibrates through the walls.
From a path to the right, a lengthy appendage with countless claws drags itself along the ground. It's fat and covered in a clothlike skin with many pricks running up and down, but it grows skinny as it recedes into the black. It does not approach you, but merely taps its sharpened nails along the ground in a slow rhythm.
The arm is so fat that it blocks the path ahead.
Pryce's horn glows as he helps push off the furniture from Spitshine.
"Something must have been trying to get in if they piled all their furniture to block this."
"Come on, we found a way in."
Pryce says to the rest of the group back at the main door, shepherding everypony back together as they enter.
With light fading as they venture deeper, he attempts to light his horn to illuminate as much as he can so they aren't caught offguard.>Telekinesis [Fire] [1d10]
"Hopefully whoever lives here will be friendly, or at least give us a nice sanctuary given all this trinkets."
He comments as they pass over the collection of knickknacks on the wall. Reaching the junction, he looks down both ways.
"I vote we go down the left path."Roll #1 9 = 9
Amy bounces up to what seems to be the end of the appendage and extends her hoof for shaking. "Howdy! My name is Amy. What's yours?"
[1d10] to make contact!Roll #1 3 = 3
After pulling through the slimy strands, Flaming gags after making it to the other side, "BLEECH! Gross… what is all this stuff, some kind of demon plant?" She asks aloud as they move on ahead, but as the metal-scratching sound makes itself known, Flaming stops in her place and freezes, frozen in fear at the sight of the clothlike claw dragging its nails along the ground. "G-g-g-reat, now what?"
She stares at the waiting, tapping claw with great apprehension, approaching it steadily as she lowers her voice, "He-hello? Can you understand us? We're walking through here, is that gonna be a problem? H-huh?">>677660
As Amy dives for it, Shorthorns gasps, grabbing at her tail with her teeth, "Amy no! What if it grabs you?!"
You light a large, illuminating fire.
The air is fresh with the scent of wet moss, and the floors have grass growing between the stones. You pick up a faint magical aura from the architecture. The right path leads down a dead-end hallway with many locked doors, but all but the final one appear broken. The left path has a room with three pony-sized golems walking around. They have stone cylindrical bodies and domed heads, with metal joints and four glowing eyes on each cardinal point of the head. Beyond them is an open doorway.
"What should we do?" Zjetya asks. "Figure we're just following you for now.">>677661>>677662
A sore on the side of the arm pops when Amy approaches, and splashes her with a foul molten fluid. She loses four Hits, and will take continuing damage of 2 Hits for 3 turns.
Renee shovels some snow from outside onto the affected spot. [1d10+2]
"Get back!" Rus hisses. "Who knows how many more of them are in here?"
The arm trashes a bit, trying to flop onto Amy like an injured creature. [1d10+2]Roll #1 1 + 2 = 3
/ Roll #2 6 + 2 = 8
Flaming gasps as the arm leaps at Amy, "I knew it! I KNEW something bad was gonna happen…" she growls, her horns lighting up in blue embers to forcibly draw its attention away, "Don't you dare touch her, monstrous spawn! Quick, get her back, and move past it while I draw its attention!"
>Offering on the Mountain:Automatic; Recharge 2 after effect ends; A cursed blue fire encircles your head, drawing the ire of enemies, leaving them more likely to target you over allies who have not attacked yet. Allies who score critical successes attract more ire. This effect lasts 3 turns.
Observer looks around the building, opening his Fourth Eye in attempts to give him better vision in the darkness, looking both ways to find out a better route to take.
"We should attempt to find out where they store their documents. With enough blueprints I could learn how to craft similar machinery to the ones they make here."Roll #1 5 = 5
You discern that there may be items in the room with the unbroken lock, and give yourself a slight boost to night vision.
"Maybe they'll let us borrow some. It doesn't look like they like demons, they might be willing to aid us.">>677663
Pryce looks at the two options.
"Let's head left. These golems don't look too broken, so they might be new-ish. Whoever lives ere might have them set up as an extra guard, …hopefully from demons."
Pryce says, leading left.
"Why would it do that, silly?">>677663
"Eep!" Amy yelps as the liquid hurts her.
"Agh, that's disgusting!" she complains. "But, at least it didn't grab me," she adds, looking to Flaming with a smile.
Amy leaps away from it as it tries to flail onto her. [1d10]Roll #1 9 = 9
"It's TRYING TO right now! And it sprayed acid all over you, that's WAY worse! A-are you okay?!"
"Yeah… It kind of hurts… And it's really gross. But, I'm fine."
Amy grins and spreads her arms out. "Want a hug!?" she asks with a maniacal laugh.
"No need to borrow, I should be able to recreate them if I memorize them well enough. Any locks we come across, I may be able to open them." Observer says, looking towards a room with an unbroken lock.>>677667
Observer decides to look over the lock for ways to pick it open.
[1d10+2]Roll #1 10 + 2 = 12
"It LOOKS really gross.. blegh, I bet it'll stink up your coat too." her eyes open much wider, "N-no! Don't hug me until it's gone, I don't wanna get it on me!"
"Never hurts to ask, they might let us see all of them if we do."
"Are you sure you want to check that? There's probably a reason its still locked with every other one broken."
Pryce says with caution as Observer starts to diverge from the group.
The fat arm-like thing tries to claw its way over to you, but you hear a sickening crunch of ice from the corridor that the majority of its body lies in. One of its fingers slides off, filling the air with the putrid stink of decomposing flesh. Molten pus splashes toward you.
You dash from the reach of the arm as it preoccupies itself with Flaming. The spots burnt by the molten pus quickly grow numb as the skin is painlessly eaten away. Renee's attempt to heal it only spreads it to herself, and it eats away at her arm and chest.>Amy 1/6>Renee 0/6
Rus throws a weapon from her bag at the creature. [1d10+2] [1d3]
As the arm flails, an opening appears. Roll if you want to jump around it.>>677670
As you wander through the room, you hear a stone sliding into place, and you are showered with angry glass pieces from above, which slice all across your neck, back and shoulders. You shortly feel as though you have the onset of a flu.
"Figured that wouldn't be the last of the traps," River says. "Be a bit more careful."
Spitshine impatiently rushes into the dark ahead.
>Pryce 3/5, Sick>Sick: You feel stiff and just want to go to bed; you can no longer perform an Instant and Normal action in the same turn, only one or the other. Lasts until cured.>>677679
You deftly undo a lock without springing a poison dart trap rigged in the wall.
Inside, you see a ransacked bedroom that has little of value besides a red cape; it has a built-in necklace with an opal brooch.Roll #1 6 + 3 = 9
/ Roll #2 6 + 2 = 8
/ Roll #3 1 = 1
Flaming's ears wince at the sounds of the cracking of the ice, and looks down at the bottom of the fat arm, "I-it's breaking? Maybe it'll fall through!" She cries out as she draws its attention, trying to avoid the spraying acid of out the fallen finger as she tries to fight back a gag, "E-every move make it move, it's breaking the floor!"
[1d10] Dodging the on-coming acidRoll #1 6 = 6
See the replies to Amy and Flaming (first two in this post cycle)
"No worries, Pryce. I will turn away from danger if there is any." He says, disabling a trap before plucking open the lock.>>677684
Observer peers around the room, his eyes settling on the red cape. He scans the room for more possible traps before doing a complete scan on the red cape.
>Perception: Search for traps
[1d10+3]>Analyze: Red Cape
[1d10+1]Roll #1 4 + 3 = 7
/ Roll #2 5 + 1 = 6
"Okay, this is annoying," Amy barks angrily. "Go away!" she shouts at the arm thing.
Holy energy radiates from her body and envelope the arm.
>Wrath [1d10+3]Roll #1 3 + 3 = 6
"Be careful, and don't dawdle too long.">>677684
Pryce stops in place as he hears the stone slide. He looks up a moment before the glass showers upon him, turning back down to avoid any in his eyes just in time. He shakes the glass off and beats his wings to clean them, giving a pained inhale from all the lacerations.
"B-Better me than any of you at least…"
Pryce says, voice holding a little wheeze.
As Spitshine runs off, Pryce holds up a hoof.
"Ugh, th-that couldn't have been just glass. Let's hurry, a-and watch your step everypony."
As he marches forward his horn gives a weak light, trying to cleanse this illness.>Mantra of Purity [1d10]Roll #1 2 = 2
Flow shakes his head.
"What the heck, man?…"
He equips the Glove of the Cloudsmith and applies Ice to the Apostle Spinsaw.
[1d10]Roll #1 3 = 3
Shei-Sher enters the musty insides of the tower, grimacing at the groddy cobble floor. Shei-Sher has been lagging it behind the party as he takes a meticulous and enraptured inspection of the all artifacts that adorn the wall
>Appraise [1d10+1] if theres more information to give>Searching for something that may be useful and not cursed [1d10+1]Roll #1 6 + 1 = 7
/ Roll #2 4 + 1 = 5
Seems like that was the only one around here. The cape is stylish, but otherwise ordinary. Perhaps worth some money in a trade. >>677688
You fail to get out of the way, and the wave splashes all around your lower half. The affected areas quickly grow numb, but you can see the skin decomposing before your eyes. You lose 4 Hits and will lose 2 more per turn until healed. >>677694>>677700>>677688>>677700
The holy wave fries the arm, and with a loud crunch of breaking ice, it flies backward against the wall, clearing the path. It flails about desperately, and you see part of its other end tugged into the light. The other end is completely frozen solid, and you faintly see the corridor where it lay is coated with ice. The main arm crusts over with a vile yellow crystalline sap.
Renee splits off the part of her body which was splashed by the pus, reforming at about 1/3 her original size. She splashes snow onto the injured, healing them, but the newly-regenerated skin is raw with fresh, bright pain.>Amy 7/6>Flaming 8/7
"Looks like the trail to our witch," Blessings says grimly. "But assuredly, also whatever that arm was connected to."
The route which the arm blocked is open, but so is the ice-filled corridor. >>677700
The creature "dies" as you apply the charge, but you note its broken frozen end. It seems to be a weakness.>>677699
Your wooziness makes it hard to concentrate.
Ahead, you go down several twisting halls until you reach a narrow room that was once a kitchen, now ransacked. In the far right corner there is an upward staircase, but laying before it is a sophisticated clockwork creature in the shape of an owlbear, though its legs are thicker and more like that of a panther. It lays before the staircase, guarding it.
Spitshine is near the doorway to this room, feeling around the ground with a stick for traps. [1d10+1]>>677705
Whoever set up these anti-spirit wards seemed to have gone through an encyclopedia of superstitions, as there are no end of random objects, scrawlings and trinkets that have no use, but are merely believed to shake off demons. You spy a vine-and-origami headdresses from Circadia, which actually does make you less noticeable by Evil beings.
The others have gone ahead without you; roll navigation.Roll #1 7 + 1 = 8
Observer lifts the cape up with his telekinesis, moving it over to wear it himself. He looks at himself for a moment to feel the fabric the cape is made of before making his way back to rejoin Pryce, looking out for anymore traps.
>Perception: Continue searching traps
[1d10+3]Roll #1 8 + 3 = 11
Amy nods with silent purpose as she heads through the corridor she opened up.
Flaming wails at the acid's contact to her lower half, jumping and rolling along the ground as she tries to rub it off, "AAaah! Ow, ow, get it off, get it off, it burns!" she whines until Renee splashes her snow onto the afflicted areas, gasping for breath as she watches Amy's holy wrath destroy the monstrosity. She pants, and sighs, "T-thank you. That was close. What in the name of the spirits is this thing…"
She leads on towards the now accessible ice-path that the monster was blocking, looking over at the crusted body that leads within. "Y-you don't suppose this thing is part of something bigger, do you Blessings?" She asks, before sighing as she stares at the icy path.
"Well, if you ask me, I guess it makes sense that SOMEPONY doesn't want us going down this path… and whatever demons don't desire is worth checking into." She looks at Renee, "Everyone! Let's go down here, but stick close in case there's more of this thing." Her blue embers along her horns whiff out of existence, and she presses the march onwards.
>Voting ice path
Flow grunts in frustration as the Glove refuses to work. He stows it away and starts turning the crank on the Spinsaw to get it started.
"Dumb thing…never works…"
Once the Spinsaw is whizzing fast, he heads down the ice path.
Shei-Sher frowns initially at his findings. Kicking the wall and thinking "That was a fine waste of time. Complete amateurs these people."
Shei smirks at the sight of the headdress and plucks it off the wall gleefully. Taking off the half skull helm he props the headdress along his horns.
As Shei turns to continue following his party he is painted pale at finding he's been left behind "aaaaaahh" he meekly utters as he grows afraid like a child who lost their parent in a supermarket.
He ambles down the corridor looking both ways "uuh Pryce??" His echoes through the chamber "Y-You can have the helmet now."
After a few minutes spent dawdling in increasing fear and nervousness Shei soon indecisively chooses his path.>Navigation [1d10+1]Roll #1 2 + 1 = 3
Pryce stops as he sees Spitshine, catching his breath from this sickness.
"H-Have you always been this fast?"
He speaks through a wheeze.
He looks into the kitchen, letting Spitshine continue undisturbed. His eyes settle on the creature, looking much more intimidating as it blocks passage.
"Think it might let us pass?"
He asks the ones still with him.
Observer detects that there are certain spots in the grass that have been marked with green paint; stepping onto one of these spots will cause a bucket of animal blood to spill onto you. Spitshine retreats and whispers the same to Pryce and the others. Because you discern their locations, you can avoid them Automatically.
"Probably not if it were a true beast," Volkama says, "but perhaps this one could be distracted more easily? It is a mere machine, no thinker as we are.">>677721
As you follow the sounds of Pryce and Observer, you slip on some glass along the floor, and trip and cut your leg. You shortly gain the flulike symptoms that you see on Pryce as you catch up to them. You see the room that they do (see previous post).>Shei 5/7, Sick>Sick: You feel stiff and just want to go to bed; you can no longer perform an Instant and Normal action in the same turn, only one or the other. Lasts until cured.>>677713>>677715>>677718https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZNeIWyHBeD0
The temperature drops drastically as you lead your group down the hall. Blessings' glowing sword does little to light the way. The scents all vanish, aside from the sickly rotting scent of fruit and mold and vomit, with a flowery undertone that makes it a little sweet.
The metal creaks and churns grow louder, and you feel a grand shifting beneath your hooves, as if the Spindle itself were rocking with an irregular tempo, like a diseased heart. You reach a sprawling chamber that you cannot discern the dimensions of. It seemed to be the site of a great and recent battle. Splattered all along the floor is a massive bulging layer of pink and black flesh, sprawling out like a carpet. Immense chunks of it are frozen solid. Limbs resembling the arm you just fought lie all around the room; some lay dead and crystallized, while others weakly inch along the ground, twitching in apparent misery.
Amy notices that there's a texture along the ground resembling her merryflower root; the texture seems to grow deeper toward the center of the room.
"We just fought… a piece of it?" Onion asks with uncharacteristic worry.
The chamber is wide and the irregular heartbeat leaves you mildly disoriented. Roll to find the way through.
"We should walk more cautiously, I don't want to bring a flu back onto the ship when it's time to return." Observer says to Pryce and Shei, moving through the grass and avoiding the traps he spotted. As Observer moves past the traps, he keeps an eye out for more traps along the way.
>Perception: Trap seeking
[1d10+3]Roll #1 5 + 3 = 8
"Glass and blood? What kind of pony would set traps like these."
Pryce utters under his breath as Spitshine says his findings.
He steps into the kitchen, avoiding the spots and looking at the machine from a distance.
Pryce thinks, looking over some of the kitchen supplies. Looking back into the hallway behind it, Pryce starts to focus his magic. He stops for a moment, coughing a few times. Focusing again, he tries to use his magic to pull some of the loose utensils into the hall behind it, to sound as if someone has passed to gauge the machines reaction.>Hat Magic [1d10]>>677733
"I don't *cough* plan on it. Oberserver, could yo examine this machine from a distance? Maybe we can shut it off to get by it easily."Roll #1 5 = 5
Shei-Sher winces at the cut. as he gets up from the floor he begins to wobble and cough moderately then violently. "*cough* *cough!* *hack* *Wheeze* Ghastly!" His asthma has seened to activate as he wheezes with every breath. "How could I not be more careful."
Shei-Sher catches up with the party and hears the conversation.
"Right" Shei replies to Volkama's comment "Before we try anything I'd like to appraise i- *COUGH COUGH!* Mhm , first."
Shei-Sher dangles Pupil over the OwlBear machination.
Shei passes the half skull helm to Pryce "Pryce I've had my fill. Do you still want the helm?"Roll #1 3 + 1 = 4
"I suppose I could… Give me one moment."
[1d10+2]Roll #1 6 + 2 = 8
"Had your fill in wearing the helm?"
Pryce says, raising an eyebrow in Shei's handing it over. He takes it still in his telekinesis.
"Of course it was just a piece of it," Amy giggles. "What kind of silly thing would JUST be an arm?"
Amy tiptoes around the design as well as the arms. [1d10] to find a way through the roomRoll #1 1 = 1
Flaming shivers intensively as they approaching further down the icy hallway, her singed fur not doing much to keep her from the cold as they find their way through the shifting, creaking metal heart of the city. "W-w-why is it getting s-s-s-o cold…?"
As they enter the massive chamber, Flaming suppresses a loud gasp as she looks at the twisting, frozen pieces of pink/black flesh strewn all over the floor, eyes warily looking between those arms that yet live. "W-what is this monstrosity? It reminds me of when we were in Circadia." She sighs, looking to Onion, "W-we should be fine, these ones are slower the closer we get to the c-c-c-cold I think. Just avoid stepping close to them and we-we-we should be just fine." Shorthorns assures, stepping onto the disgusting material of the chamber, "Blessings, stay close, we need your light."
[1d10]Roll #1 9 = 9
Flow groans as the smell starts to get to him. He continues to crank the Spinsaw's blade as he tries navigating through the chamber, being careful not to step in any foreign liquids.
[1d10]Roll #1 1 = 1
There seems to be another trap on the staircase; setting hoof on the first five steps will cause some kind of alarm that will summon the golems and clockwork owlbear to attack. That will require a roll to avoid.
Pryce's distraction proves useful, as the owlbear automaton jolts up and stiffly walks across the room toward the back, head kept low as it investigates the area, leaving the staircase unguarded.
The others seize the opportunity, creeping forward as the owlbear moves away, taking care to avoid the traps.>>677737>>677738>Owlbear Automaton>HP: 297/390>Weak: None>Null: Elec>This automaton was the private project of the previous owner of the workshop, a wise pony beloved by the local community of workers. Technically unfinished, it was shipped out in haste to guard the Workshop's fearful occupants.>>677744>>677742>>677743
As you circle around the carnage and the wreckage of the mostly-collapsed chamber, Flaming notices a gateway not blocked by debris and devoid of monsters.
"Ah-a, linger on, thou art so fair…" a flamboyant deep voice taunts. Amy and Flow feel a creeping feeling slither down their backs. Ice has formed around their hooves in the shape of sharp needles, which jab into their limbs, just deep enough to prick the nerves in Amy's legs, and freeze bits of Flow's limbs. "I imprisoned your murderers; take your vengeance, O sweet Flower of the Pit…"
The heartbeat accelerates to a violent frenzy, and something metal shatters above. Debris and chains fall from above, and you see a great chunk of metal is falling from the ceiling, threatening to crush Amy and Flow!
Amy and Flow must roll to dodge, at a -2.
Rus Tea, Blessings and Onion fling their attacks at the falling metal, while Renee attacks the ice imprisoning Amy and Flow (if she gets an 8 or above, you roll at -1 instead)
[1d10+2] ReRoll #1 3 + 2 = 5
/ Roll #2 3 + 4 = 7
/ Roll #3 3 + 2 = 5
/ Roll #4 9 + 2 = 11
Flaming turns around in glee as she spots the gateway, "Blessings, shine your sword over here! I think I found something…"
As the voice calls out, she drops down into a battle-stance, horns out and legs poised to jump as she listens to it, "WHO ARE YOU!? Where are you?"
As the huge crash sounds above, Shorthorns looks up in shock at the huge chunk of metal falling, and runs at the frozen Amy/Flow, "No! Amy, Flow, move out of the way!" She cries out as she leaps up at the metal head on to bust it open on her head, "GRAAAAAH!"
[1d10+3]>All or NothingRoll #1 1 + 3 = 4
Observer turns to tend to Shei for a moment, working a bit of his magic before turning to avoid the traps.
"Stand still, Shei." Observer says, attempting to cure Shei of his sickness.
>Purgative Dose: Automatic Instant; Recharge 3; Your other action this turn will autocrit a target which is afflicted with a status condition, at the cost of removing that status condition.>Slap the sickness out of him
[1d10]Roll #1 8 = 8
/ Roll #2 1 = 1
"Who did I murder," Amy asks as she looks up and around as if she could find the voice. "I'm sorry, I've kind of killed a lot of ponies. But, I'm trying to make up for my mistakes. Can I do something to h-"
However, she cuts herself off as she sees the metal falling at her. She jumps out of the way. [1d10]Roll #1 9 = 9
>>677761>Phantasmagoria of Infallibility: Use whenever you critfail as a free action; Both rolls are DC 4; On success, the critfail's negative effects are negated but the roll still fails. You then "store" that critfail for later use. As an Instant action, you can use that stored critfail on an enemy. This critfail will not affect their rolls for that turn, but it will cause 1 critfail's worth of damage and negative effects to occur to them. You can store up to 3 critfails.
[1d10]Roll #1 5 = 5
Pryce mentally sighs in relief at how easy it was to clear the path, following slow with the others to the staircase. He pulls up his cloak over his mouth to keep his coughs and other sicknesses muffled.>>677761>>677737>>677755
"Zjetya, carry Spitshine. Volkama, carry your wife. Wireframe, carry Shei. Observer, I can lift you over. River, you can get over with your shoes. We can all avoid the triggered steps easily."
Once the ice starts freezing bits of Flow's limbs, he starts frantically looking around. He looks above as the chains and debris starts to fall on Amy and him.
"Oh you gotta be kiddin me!"
He grips tightly onto the Maitreya Tsurugi, and prepares to slash the giant piece of metal as it comes crashing down on him.>Effect: It is much easier to cut through the environment (walls, floors, nearby objects) with this sword.
[1d10+3]Roll #1 6 + 3 = 9
"Hm?" shei-sher looks at Observer revving up his magic to do something. For some reason he suddenly feels nervous.>>677765>>677755
Shei-Sher looks over to wireframe and back at Pryce "T-that wil be quite fine Pryce."
Shei-Sher coughs up a bit before taking a few step back before the stairs and performs a goatly prance up the five stairs.>Goatcraft: passive; Min -1 for all climbing and agility rolls, and can use anything as food, including non-food items
[1d10+2]Roll #1 2 + 2 = 4
In the wild frenzy of debris, splintering chunks of chain and metal fly all about, and embed themselves all along your neck, shoulders and chest, and a horridly jagged shard embeds itself into your forehead. You fall into your back, but in great pain, bleeding from many places. Oorzof's circlet is knocked off your head into the darkness.
A firm backhand across the cheek hurts like a bitch and doesn't heal Shei.>>677769>>677762
"I'd heard the purple one was a bit thick, but I wasn't aware it was so bad. I do hate to dim my poetry, though…" the voice taunts. "I'm telling it that YOU killed it, when it was really Vizsla and I. I'm blaming you wrongly. Need I draw you a picture of the reasoning?"
Amy is able to dive out of range, and the combined attacks are enough to break up the falling chunk of ceiling that it breaks apart around Flow, leaving him unharmed, albeit shattered with minor dust.
"Ah. You cut through it. I'm mildly impressed. Oooh, such a pity about the brave buffalo, though…" the voice says, and you notice Flaming's grave injuries.>>677771>>677773>>677763
The others float over the rigged stairs easily, but the weaker Wireframe has trouble lugging up Shei, and his hoof catches on the top of the very last stair. Homemade noisemakers clatter and send chilling metal rings through the air. You hear a tumultuous clattering of footsteps as the owlbear and golems rush toward you.
The others start to run upstairs. "Wireframe you wimp! Can't you transform into something strong for once?" Spitshine shouts.
"Shut it, asshole!" Wireframe spits. "We'll just blockade them when we get up there!"
"S-sorry Wireframe!" Shei-Sher wobbles out of her grip and in a impulse plants his hoof on the cobble wall beside the stairs to summon a crude gate of stone to block entry from the front of the stairs.>Dream of Alchemy+2 [1d10+2]Roll #1 2 + 2 = 4
Flow slams the tsurugi back into its sheath and stows it away. He notices Flaming and crouches down next to her.
"Maybe running full speed at a giant chunk of metal isn't the best course of action, Shorty."
He takes off his scarf and starts taking out shards of metal. Carefully. He lets Renee/Amy perform their medical magic on Flaming.
He uses the Inheritance to summon Vice and Trapper.
"Find her circlet, my good friends. Did we see where it went?">"Kinda sorta."
The two clones wander off in search of the circlet.
[1d10]Roll #1 8 = 8
/ Roll #2 8 = 8
"You can fight about it after we block them off! Just run!"
Pryce shouts back as they trade insults, letting everypony else run ahead first. He looks down at the stairs, if they were trapped then they're probably loose. His horn glows bright, flickering as he gets into a coughing fit as he tries to pull up the stairs to block the staircase, or at least make it harder to traverse for the machines.>Telekinesis [1d10]
He runs up the stairs after the others after his attempt.Roll #1 2 = 2
Observer attempts to run from the danger of the golems and owlbear. He uses his telekinesis to trip any of the golems or the owlbear if they get too close.
[1d10]Roll #1 10 = 10
/ Roll #2 2 = 2
As the huge mass of metals lams down into Flaming, breaking through her attack and sending her to the ground full of jagged shards and profuse bleeding, likely both external and internal, Flaming cries out in anguish, "AAAAAAAAGH!"
When the metal finishes collapsing, she can barely hear the voice above, struggling to maintain consciousness as she struggles to pick herself off of the fleshy, frozen floor, "A-gaagh… oww….. oww…. w-what are you… talking about…?" she winces, moving sluggishly with all the metal in her body as she feels her bloodied scalp. "M-my circlet!"
She looks out frantically in the darkness, limping as she tries to look for her treasure, "Wh-where did it go? Blessing! Your light!"
[1d10] To search for it in the darkness>>677786
As Flow crouches down besides her, she manages a very weak moo of a laugh as she rubs at her shards, "M-my head can take it… ow… I-I was trying to break it so it wouldn't land on you, but, heh… I-I guess you had yourselves covered. I-I'll be alright, truly,"
She sighs as she looks at Vice, "But, yes, I could use help, that circlet was a gift from Lady Hardspine, I CAN'T lose it…"Roll #1 9 = 9
"I don't like liars…" Amy grumbles. "But, for a lie, that's a kinda silly one. Can't you just attack us yourself? I mean, if you killed a thing, then doesn't that mean you're stronger than the thing anyway?"
Amy looks over and sees Flaming injured. Without saying anything, she walks over and feeds her a potion.
>Natural Remedy [1d10+3]
Amy thinks as she feeds the potion to Flaming then looks back up at the ceiling as if that's where the voice is coming from. "Are you the moody witch?"Roll #1 1 + 3 = 4
Merryflower root save: [1d3]Roll #1 3 = 3
V&T find the circlet after a little bit of digging, finding it caught beneath a defaced, broken statue dripping with crystallized pus. Pus clings to the circlet, and though it's putrid, it doesn't damage the circlet itself.>>677789>>677793>>677786
Renee and Flow hold Flaming still to keep her from squirming as Renee and Amy heal her, but Flaming's injuries are still rather grave. The damage is very deep, and the best they can do is to keep it from getting worse.
The voice sighs theatrically. "You just don't understand nuance or panache, do you? Preparing a meal is an art
, and no PROPER artiste sullies himself needlessly. Am I going flow enough for you?
"Mudi? Hmm-hmm-hmm. That little lambchop wishes she could be me. I just like to trail along in her shadow, spreading a few misfortunes here and there. For what is satisfaction but the overcoming of misfortune?"
The half-frozen, destroyed heart shudders wildly, and a great, misshapen limb resembling a crooked wasp's stinger juts up into the air, stabbing at the ceiling wildly. It weakly stops, and crumbles.
"Ugh… are you done?" the male voice asks the heart. "Dirty Tartarian caretakers… brutish to the end. I've pored over the 256 great temptations and I cannot fathom what could POSSIBLY tempt Mudi into wanting into Tartarus so badly. But, my curtain descends. Ta-ta next Scene…">>677787>>677785>>677788
You scatter various blocks and bits of rubble to block your path, but the pounding steps draw near!
>Wait for the result of this
"Light shines from heaven," Zjetya deeply intones, and a harsh wind blows down past you at the staircase, shaking it wildly.
[1d10+3]Roll #1 2 + 3 = 5
The wind current blows a few more chunks of rock and refuse at the staircase, adding to what you've already thrown down to set up a weak barricade.
"That should hold for now," Zjetya pants, as the barricade allows you a brief moment of respite. "Here, we should…"
A tingling, like an electric shock, descends upon you, and the others' expressions show they feel it too.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z9zipzqHWFs
Pryce's flame goes out.
"Magic is forbidden on this floor," a message in your mind reads. It is without a voice, but you know it to be true.
"All magic?" River asks fearfully. "Who's doing this? I don't consent to such limitations!"
"Anyone who'd set up a thing like this would probably keep a failsafe around for himself. C'mon, let's see if we can find it," Wireframe says.
The path ahead is a plain hallway, with thick grass growing all around you, making it hard to see the floor. It leads to a locked door.
"I'm sorry," Amy laughs. "I'm not smart enough for being fancy or cool. But, before you go, could you please do me a favor? I want to talk to Moody. Since you always follow her, you can tell me where she is, right?"
>Prayer of Enlightenment to learn Compassion>Mantra of Equality to convince the demon(?) [1d10] with a DC-3Roll #1 8 = 8
Observer looks around the hallway as well as checking the grass for traps, he attempts to check out the locked door too to see if he can get it opened.
>Engineering: Locked door
Roll #1 2 + 3 = 5 / Roll #2 5 + 2 = 7
"Whoa, wh-hat was that?"
Pryce questions in surprise after Zjetya conjures that torrent of wind.>>677805
He climbs up the rest of the stairs to rejoin the others, going a little slow to not leave him wheezing again.
As he's shocked, Pryce holds a hoof to the wall, holding on as he hacks after the electric surge, legs feeling weak.
Pryce is about to light his horn to give them vision again, but with what they've already seen, and being shut down, fear grows from the pit of his stomach and prevents him from testing it.
"Let's just get off this floor."
Pryce says through a sniffle, following the others down the hall.
"It just said this floor, once we move on we don't need to worry."
As they walk, he tries to keep an eye out from any sign of this voice, or if there's some device there to shut down their magic.>Perception [1d10]Roll #1 5 = 5
Flaming struggles against Flow and Renee's grasp as Amy and Renee apply their cures, but still winces heavily in pain as she struggles to cope with the searing pain of the shrapnel.
She growls to herself, "Ow…. ow… R-renee, isn't there MORE you can do? It still hurts…" she angrily turns up at the voice as it continues to haunt them, "You sure do like to talk a lot… so if you're not either of the witches, WHO are you then…? What is this thing you're tormenting and accusing us of having killed?" She asks the voice before it mentions its curtain descending, she shouts, "Don't you leave! W-we're not done here!" She struggles to stand, leaning heavily on Renee and looking at Rus Tea for support.>>677807
"T-this must be the thing that was traveling with Vizsla and killed those ponies last night… but I don't know what it could be. C-can you keep it talking, it has to be coming from somewhere."
She whines silently, "A-and can I have another potion, please? I-I think I'm a liiiittle more hurt than usual… ow…"
The goo duo bring the circlet back to Flaming, and wipe some of the disgusting pus off before they set it in front of her.
Flow shoots an annoyed look at his scarf when he's done with Flaming, as it now has small traces of blood on it.
"Ah whatever. Hardly liked this thing anyways…"
He wraps it around his neck and revs up the Spinsaw, looking at the half-frozen heart.
"Right, time to see what this thing can do."
He goes for two quick swipes with the Spinsaw.
Before he does, Vice reaches into Flow's coat to see if any bounties have been completed, or if any of them are glowing.Roll #1 7 + 3 = 10
/ Roll #2 7 + 3 = 10
Shei-Sher thinks to himself "That will be annoying, but I will try to respect my position as a guest."
Shei-Sher runs up the stairs, as he is the lowest at the steps. Wheezing and coughing to at least follow after Observer and the same pattern his runs to avoid traps.
Roll #1 8 = 8
[1d2]Roll #1 1 = 1
/ Roll #2 1 = 1
As the circlet is returned, pus cleanly wiped off, she lowers her head as she struggles to stand, "Thank you Sir Flow… sorry about your scarf but I think the blood gives it, um, character?"
Vice looks at Flow, then back to Flaming.>"Granted, it is your blood, Miss Shorthorns. I'm sure he appreciates the few splashes of red on it, though. He does like red, after all!"
He nervously laughs.
Flaming blushes hard, "M-maybe mention it's somepony else's blood if they ask though… s-say you got it from a vicious foe who didn't go down easy, that will sound more impressive."
"Now, you're ruining my exit! I do not linger longer on the stage than is proper for my role!"
"Nopony's twistin' your arm to stick around, ya fancy-talkin' slickster," Onion points out.
"You're just mangling the Equish language now! I should've done my lines in Neighsco…" the voice says. "Seek Mudi in the Ash Ward of the Forge Vimana. But I warn you: she is hardly in the mood… or mental state… for interviewing new henchmen.
"Ah, yes, your quaint convention of names. What name shall I take for myself in this incarnation? Mmm… Kaliyau. I have enjoyed that story, so that shall suffice.
"NOW I'm leaving!" the voice says finally.>>677810
The heart shudders, causing the room to quake. Several severed, dying appendages break off to try to swing at you.
[1d10+1] [1d10+1] [1d10+1]
One wanted poster glows: it shows a silhouette of a tall humanoid figure with a horse head. The artist depicts him as wearing a sexy flamenco dancer's gown, but a note at the bottom says that details are scarce. When the demon says he is Kaliyau, the name appears on the glowing poster.>>677810>>677808>>677814
"What, can't you control the wind with a song lyric?" Zjetya shoots back at Pryce with a challenging tone.
Observer unlocks the door while the others keep an eye out for surprises. Seeing none, you forge on.
The next room you enter is a thin hallway, so thin that you must proceed in single file. There is no wall on the right side, only a mirror that reflects the room despite the lack of a light source. The far wall is also a mirror, reflecting Observer, who is at the front of the line.
Spitshine, who is at the back, shuts the door behind you.
"I would very much like to prod the brain of the architect," Volkama says.
"Obviously it's a puzzle!" Spitshine says. "What, too hard for you?"
"What do we do?" River asks, genuinely stumped.Roll #1 10 + 1 = 11
/ Roll #2 1 + 1 = 2
/ Roll #3 10 + 1 = 11
"Ash Vimana of the Forge Ward, got it," Amy says with a nod as if she actually got that right. "Thank you, Kaliyau. Giving ominous information and your name? That's TOTALLY a better exit anyway. I definitely think you're cooler than if you left the first time."
"I'll… have to look up that name later, though," she adds with a laugh. "Byeeeeeeee."
Amy waves in every direction, hoping that will help.
She looks at everyone else. >>677827>>677817
"Well, it sounds like this thing was a guard of Tartarus or something," Amy says, pointing to the limbs everywhere. "So, I don't really care about it. We got what we came for. Let's go."
Amy begins to hop out the way she came. Along the way, she tosses Flaming another potion. [1d10+3]Roll #1 9 + 3 = 12
Flow keeps the Spinsaw's onslaught going, giving the heart another two violent sawings as he grits his teeth.
Vice blinks.>"Ah…so he didn't have a name beforehand…">>677830
I'd be glad to, let me just cut this heart up first!"
He yells over the Spinsaw's loud volume.Roll #1 6 + 3 = 9
/ Roll #2 1 + 3 = 4
As Kaliyau makes his exit, she growls and shouts up at the cieling of the chamber, "We'll find you, you know! You can't run from us, demon!"
As Flow's buzz-saw slices at the heart above, Flaming quivers and tries to keep her grounds at the quaking of the frozen flesh beneath her, and looks on in shock as some of the appendages strike out at Flow. She growls, spitting up blood to the side as she charges the 1st one, "Let's see if I can pay you back!"
[1d10+3] All or Nothing>>677830
As Amy gives her another potion, she sighs as she drinks it up, "Thank you again. But, wait, before we go: I saw another gate in the darkness! Maybe it goes through, 'Ash' if I remember the map correctly should be the opposite side of where we came in. If we go out the way we came, we'll have to go aaaaall the way around, but if this leads straight through, we'll get to Ash in no time!"Roll #1 4 + 3 = 7
Shei says after Volkama's comment "I would like to ask how many years bad luck would incur from breaking one."
"I could astral project to observe the area from another point of view but that would anger our host. I could also shine my aura to reveal anything that is hidden from us but the light reflecting from so many directions may blind us." Upon further contemplation Shei says "There is a possibility that this is but a one-way window however. Everyone close your eyes for a moment or squint at least."
Shei-Sher lets his aura fill the room with ambient light to reveal anything hidden and particularly if the mirrors are one-way windows.
>PHASE AURA: Your body sheds light in a small radius of 5 meters, in a color you choose when you learn this skill. All creatures in this range cannot turn invisible or become hidden, creatures already hidden or invisible are made clear, and incorporeal beings and lingering magical effects and wards manifest a visible shape.
[1d10+1]Roll #1 9 + 1 = 10
Observer looks about the room carefully, observing anything out of place or off with the mirrors. He stands there, solving the puzzle in his head before continuing on.
>Engineering: Looking for hints
Roll #1 3 + 3 = 6 / Roll #2 8 + 2 = 10
"Give me a day or two with the scroll and *coughcugh* I w-will, ugh."
Pryce tries to counter back at the challenge, before the coughing fit breaks the wind form his sails, and lungs.
As they enter the thin hallway, Pryce looks around in the odd structure, trying to stand strong with the mirrors starting to make his queasiness worse.
"Maybe we have to show only one pony in the mirror. Get the biggest in front, so they block everypony else."
"…Who's the biggest here?"
You hear a faint frustrated snarl from Kaliyau as his voice fades away.>>677831>>677833>>677830>Flaming 8/5
An ominous dark feeling descends upon Flow; though he carves up quite a bit of this slab of the broken heart and in the process destroys many arms that protrude from it, the feeling only grows worse. The nearby arms dissolve into mush, and so does Flow. He loses his material from for a moment, then reforms as a severe dark wind blows through him.
The heart remains still as the saw clatters to the ground and stops spinning. The heartbeat of the chamber is replaced with a distant, sharp cry; a mournful one. It comes from the heart, though sounds countless infinite distances away.>>677835>>677836
"That would be me," Volkama says, puffing his chest out against Pryce's. "Don't you sneeze on me."
Observer notices something odd in the mirror on the right wall; though it reflects everyone perfectly, he sees that River has a key sticking out of her hair, but only in the reflection. The real River has no such key stuck in her mane. She is currently near the back, just ahead of Spitshine.>>677834
The mirrors are no such thing, but you and Pryce now notice the key in the mirror-River's hair, as described above. "How long have I had that there?" River asks with mild surprise, taking the moment to inspect her body in the mirror. Her expression quickly turns to sad disgust.
Observer attempts to pluck the key from River's hair, looking for the door to put the key into. "These rooms seem to be set up more as tests than security measures."
Roll #1 2 + 3 = 5
After exerting his aura Shei-Sher sits down feeling particularly fatigued "Oh.. guuh mrp. I *wheeze* need to sit down. I feel so queezy"
As Kaliyau snarls at Amy, she lets loose a small chuckle. "I don't think he liked your suggestion very much…"
As the dark acid washes over Flow, temporarily suspending his material form, she gasps, and cries out in shock as she sees her friend melt before her eyes, "FLOW! No, no, no, this can't be…"
As he reforms, but the winds howl around him, Flaming pauses in her grief, but feels chills not only from her friend but of the sharp, distant cry of the heart, and the creature it belongs to, around them as she huddles down in one spot, "W-what just happened? What is it doing? Is it… crying?" She asks aloud, before turning back to Flow, "Flow, a-are you okay? You just.. melted!"
Pryce takes a step back as Volkama chest-bumps him, walking into whoever is behind him.
"Wasn't planning on *cough* it."
Pryce says, quickly covering his mouth with his robe at the cough.
Pryce turns his head as the key becomes visible in River's mane.
"Okay, correction. River, you go upfront."
After the suggestion, Pryce checks in the mirror to see if there's anything else that only shows in the mirror on any of the group.>Perception [1d10]Roll #1 5 = 5
Flow stumbles backwards as the dark wind blows right through him.
He falls on the floor, and starts revving up his Spinsaw to go in fro another round until both his clones stop him.>>"Oi oi! No more o' that, sonny!">"Yes Sir Flow, you've already caused enough harm to it, and yourself."
Flow retaliates, and pushes them off.
"Just…get a weapon, damnit! It's a demon. We kill demons. Plain and simple."
He revs up the Spinsaw and goes in for another round.
The duo both sigh in defeat. Vice hoists Schlangenschwert on his shoulder, and Trapper takes the tsurugi and parrying dagger. The two of them keep their distance.>>677841
"Nothing major, Shorty, just got the wind knocked outta me!">"He's pushing himself to exterminate this thing…I fear he might just dissolve again."Roll #1 3 + 3 = 6
/ Roll #2 3 + 3 = 6
[1d2]Roll #1 2 = 2
/ Roll #2 2 = 2
Flaming lets out a brief sigh as her goo knight companion confirms he's okay upon his reform, "T-that's good. I was afraid, when you just MELTED like that I thought… w-well you should still have Renee look at you!"
As his buzzsaw cuts away at the heart, she looks at Vice, frowning, "It's weird but, this… monster, I think it's crying. Like it's hurt. Which, makes sense, a-and I don't know WHY it even matters, it hurt US first, but… it sounds a little sad."
The goo duo both nod, and interrupt Flow's attacks with their own.
Vice parries the spinsaw, and Trapper hooks the spinsaw with his parrying dagger.
>"Sir Flow, leave it.">>"I'll a've t' agree lad. The bloody thing ain't got a reason t' die jus yet."
Amy frowns when the heart makes its sound, tearing up a bit. She waits for Flow to finish his episode.>>677843
"Why do you kill things?" Amy asks in a somber, but curious voice.>>677841
"Suggestion?" Amy cocks her head. "I was COMPLIMENTING him! Or… her? I mean, I don't want to assume. I should read that story first."
A look of realization crosses her face. "Or… get someone to read it to me…"
>>677843>>"Aye lass. This thing pro'ly jus wanted us t' leave."
Trapper's accent seems much different than usual.>>677847>"There's no reason to be concerned, Miss Thest, Flow's just…being a bit unreasonable, that's all."
[First response was ment for Flaming]
"That's not an excuse," Amy responds in a similarly somber tone.
Flow grunts as he struggles against his clones.
"This thing was attacking us, why shouldn't we kill it?!"
Being at the front, you cannot reach River, but the others pass the key to you. You can't feel it, but as you look at it in the mirror, you know you hold it in your hooves.
As you look at yourself in the smaller mirror at the end of the hall, you get the feeling you're missing one component. The reflection is a jumbled mess of the ponies standing behind you: there's no door. There is a door at the other end, but that would just lead you back the way you came, even with this mirror key. But if the door was here in front of you…>>677842>>677840
There are no other things visible in the mirror that aren't present in the real world, but you have the same idea as Observer: a mirror key is useless if there's no door to use it on. But there's a door at the other end of the hall, where you came in. The mirror key wouldn't have an effect on the real door, though. But if there were a door in front of Observer…>>677840>>677842
River turns to you and passes you some sweet-smelling red leaves from her pocket. "This will ease your symptoms," she says glumly. >>677843>>677845>>677847
Renee and Rus Tea intervene as well to try to keep Flow from attacking the heart further, but Rus is nearly blown away by Flow's power while Renee stands strong. "WHAT are you doing!?" Renee demands. "There are plenty of other demons about, but can we pick a fight with this one when it's strong as sin, even in shambles as it is?"
The room grows quiet. The others soldier on, fleeing the palpable tension.
They go down the path that Flaming saw earlier, and they eventually see light peeking through rubble. It's a tight squeeze, but you climb over the bits and pieces of broken equipment and piles of destroyed architecture, and reach the outside.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D-_-XLUCzyc
>All are healed for 1 Wound as Renee heals everyone
The Forge Vimana is oddly cheerier now that it is morning, instead of evening. The streets, though riddled with trash and refuse, are fairly peaceful, and there seem to be fewer violent outbursts than usual. An odd sense of optimism radiates from the demons.
"I envy their capacity to smile in such conditions," Rus Tea grumbles. Blessings wears a similar frown.
Flaming huffs, "Well it could also sound like a suggestion if you listen really close to your compliment. But, point is, I think that creature doesn't like it when things aren't going exactly his way. I hate that."
She blushes, "S-same here. I'm not even sure I know what 'story' Kaliyau is.">>677848
As Trapper's tone sets off something odd, Shorthorns leans over, "Should we, you know… stop him?">>677851
"Because it is not attacking us anymore, I think it may just let us leave. That creature said it tricked it into thinking we 'killed' it somehow, whatever that could mean… I think it's just defending itself. We are technically in its territory.">>677851>>677850
Flaming blushes, "But, this creature could also be suffering… and commonly it is the duty of a warrior to end the suffering of a beast if they can."
Observer looks at the reflection of the key, thinking of how to solve this puzzle. He then sticks it into the reflection of the door, seeing if that will unlock anything.
Shei-Sher takes the leaves from river's hoof "Thank you." and eats them.>>677852
Shei suffers a bit of a coughing fit and then calls over to Observer "Observer, I think I figured it out. The mirror on your end reflects the door."
meant to reply to you with this >>677855
Pryce says, keeping his mouth covered as River hands him the leaves. He pops them in his mouth, chewing as he thinks.>>677852>>677851>>677840
"I think I know what to do. Everyone, pair up as I said earlier for flying over the stairs. We need to move out of the way so the door can be reflected."
(pairs here >>677765
"Observer, I'll leave you on the ground so you can reach the lock."
He says, flapping his wings to hover up a bit.
Flow reluctantly lets go of the crank and stows away the spinsaw. He hurriedly leaves the scene, but not before spitting on the ground next to the path.
He takes a moment to collect himself after seeing the demons and their cheery attitudes. He's reminded of that scarecrow from earlier, and looks down at the ground.>>"Aye lad, ah feel it tay. They're positive, in light of all this. Ah don't think they're oll bad, eh?">>677853
"No need, lass. Th' hothead's all cooled doon now."
He follows Flow through the passage.
>"I think it'd be best if we leave the beast alone, Miss Shorty. Lest Flow's temper heaten up, and he does something rash."
"I'm intrigued to see what the next room has for us."
Flaming pushes on ahead, leaving the heart and the frozen chamber behind as she winks her eyes at the sudden sunlight peeking through the rubble, warming her fur as she hastily digs and crawls over the broken rubble to make it through to see the light of day in the Forge Vimana.
She takes in a deep whiff, free of the stink (for the most part) that was in the chamber, though the trash and refuse quickly sullies her good mood, "AAaagh… uhh… s-still better than in there." She looks around at the happy-go-lucky demons pacing the streets, looking up at Rus-Tea as she begins to move ahead past the remains of the hole. "I wonder what they're so happy about… what is this district used for again? It's called the 'Forge' Vimana if I recall, so I assume it makes weapons of war?">>677858
She sighs in relief, "V-very well then… I hope its suffering does not last forever. I wasn't sure what the right decision was to make but, so long as it no longer tries to kill us, we'll leave the monst-… beast, be."
She looks at Flow, and whispers down to Trapper, "Do you REALLY think Flow will be okay?">>677853
meant this for >>677847
"This is a pretty welcome change from all the fights."
"Yeah…" Amy sighs. "I wish I could do more…">>677852
As they exit back into the Forge Vimana, Amy gets in Rus Tea's face and gives her a hug.
"Smiling is easy! You just need to think of a funny joke!"
She begins to giggle hysterically as if she's finished telling a joke.
Trapper whispers back.
"Aye lass. Sure e' might a've a few…temper issues, but Flow can 'andle 'imself."
"Y'kno, I 'ad t' switch accents t' calm the lad doon."
A collective "Ohhh" passes through the hallway. Seeing their reflections blocking the reflection of the door in the smaller mirror, the group take to the air so as to allow the door to be reflected without them blocking it. The mirror key causes the mirror on the far wall to open like a door, allowing you to pass into the next room.
"Coulda done that myself if I got a bit to think about it," Spitshine says. Volkama makes a similar hushed complaint.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FqWixE_2_CE
The next room is thankfully more spacious than earlier; it is a rustic, elaborate dining area that has been ransacked recently. There seems to be not a trace of food left, but you see a great many broken old tools laying around. There is a curious golden-bound book laying on a nearby counter. At the far end of the room, there is a fat-bellied automaton blocking off a doorway. This automaton is not nearly made to the same quality as the one downstairs; this one is made out of random trash and junk, and its two hands are fused to a pair of unwieldy double-sided hammers. Amateur work at best. Many tiny notes lay about the room.
There are two doors on either side of the automaton, but they only lead to a bedroom and an empty closet.>>677860>>677858>>677862
Flow and only Flow notes that there are other contracts glowing now. Rus affectionately returns the hug and forces a smile, but Blessings' mood is only soured by the demons' mirth.
"We stick together," Blessings says. "A demon's happiness is our tragedy. There is nothing uplifting about this city."
Onion mutters nervously to himself, then steps forward. "I'mma float an idea for ya Blessings. Why don't we do as the Mariposans do?"
"You're calling these demons citizens?
They are less than the least of us," Blessings counters.
"I dunno… That don't explain all that I heard in the bar. Too many talkin' bout their homes… how different their 'homes' looked when they 'took them back'. Somethin' just don't add up to me. Not that I'm a mathy dog to begin with," Onion says. "Plus, a little recon could point us right to Mudi, get us some details on what kinda firepower she got."
Blessings frowns, but has a defeated expression. "Do as you like."
"You know, I kind of do too. It's really a GROSS monster, but… I don't know, I just kinda felt bad for it. But maybe if we beat that fancy story whoever it was, we can help it somehow.">>677863
Flaming winces, "I've, kind of noticed… guess you don't get to be as fine a warrior as Flow without a few issues with one's temper. Reminds me of my own clan."
"You can change those?!">>677864
As Blessing's comment, she nods her head, sticking close to Rus Tea and Amy in particular until Onion speaks up against Blessings.
She nods her head, "I agree with Blessings: whatever their stories are, however it is they came to 'take back' these homes, these demons are dangerous and still capable of tremendous evil. We shouldn't let our guard down around them…" she looks up at Blessings, "Although, some have proved more agreeable than others… that creature mentioned the Ash Wards, it could not hurt to obtain some information before-hoof on this." She trots ahead to the streets paved with garbage, shouting, "Besides, so long as we have that medal of Flow's and Amy's, they know not to mess with us!"
[1d10] Looking for some bundle of information on the Ash Wards among the streetsRoll #1 3 = 3
Shei-Sher starts to feel better from eating the leaves. He enters the room, expressing dismay for the scene.
Shei-Sher's first reaction is to appraise the automaton at the other side of the room>appraise [1d10]Roll #1 5 = 5
Pryce steps into the next room, lowering his robe as his throat feels a bit better from the herbs. He looks over the scattered tools and other junk lying about, staring at the large machine.
"…Is this a cooking puzzle?"
Pryce questions out loud, stepping over to the book and flipping it open.
"Everypony else, check those notes. We might need to piece at lot of stuff together."
Observer inspects the notes about the room first, leading himself over to the golden-bound book. He flips it open, inspecting it page by page. Observer can't help but admire the puzzles it took to get here, even if the next doorway is blocked by a garbage golem.
>Perception: Reading through notes and book
Roll #1 7 + 3 = 10
Flow's eyes widen, and he looks out into the crowd of demons, all wandering about. He constantly takes glances down at the new contracts that are highlighted, and he stays paralyzed for a few seconds, eyes wide and mouth shut.>"Sir Flow, what's the matter"
The goo shakes his head, and looks at Vice.
"N-nothing, just remembering something."
He follows the others, and constantly scans the crowd.>>677865
"Aye. Th' poor lad as 'ardly 'ad a moment of peace. Always fightin with 'im. Believe me, I've seen it firsthand." he laughs.
"Aye lass, I can change it. This'un is similar t' his father. Cept' maybe not as pr'nounced as mine."
"I wouldn't mind talking to the locals more too," Amy interjects. "I-if someone will watch me…" she adds quickly and timidly.
Amy looks to Blessings with a thoughtful expression. Suddenly, her face lights up. "Hey! Blessings! I got a joke for you!" she starts giggling.
"So, there's this colt, okay? And, there's this filly he really likes, but he's so scared to talk to her because all the colts like her. So, there's this party coming up, and the colt decides, this is the perfect time to ask the filly on a date! But, it turns out all the colts are asking her out to the same party."
"But, the colt is determined. He won't back down so easy! He waits in the long line of colts all asking her out. And, they all get rejected. So, the colt is getting more and more scared the longer the line goes. If all of them get rejected, what chance does he have? But, he keeps waiting in line. Finally, it's his turn! He asks her to the party. And, she says yes! But, he has to buy her a nice dress to the party."
"So, the colt goes to the store to buy her a dress. But, there's a really long line at the dress store today. So, the little colt waits in line for hooooours to buy her this dress. He doesn't mind, it's for the filly he likes! Finally, he gets to the end of the line and he buys the dress."
"So, he gets her the dress, and she likes it. He's so happy. But, now she says she won't go to the party unless she gets there in the fancy carriage he can get. So, he goes to rent a carriage on the day of the party. But, everyone decided that they want to rent a carriage for the party. So, he's waiting in line for HOURS for this carriage. Luckily, he saw this coming. He went there in the morning. By the time he gets the carriage, it's almost time for the party. So, he goes to pick the filly up, and they go to the party together."
"But, it's a big party. Everyone's getting there at the same time, and everyone can't fit in the door at once. So, they have to wait in a looooong line just to get into the party. But, the colt doesn't mind. He's with the filly he likes. Finally, they make it through the line and they're at the party."
"The filly decides that she wants some punch. So, the colt goes to get her some punch."
Suddenly, Amy is distracted by something in the sky and starts staring at the clouds.
"It sucks…" Amy sighs. "I want to help, but I don't know how…"
"His papa has a really funny accent. What is that, I don't recognize it.">>677870
As Amy begins her long joke in the attempt to get Blessings to crack a smile, she listens in, but as the joke goes on and on, Flaming quickly begins to lose as much interest as Amy is distracted part way through. She nudges Amy's side with her head
"This isn't a joke, it's a story. And when does it get funny, Amy?"
>>677866>The King of Trash>HP: 180/230>A hastily-made guard forged from the remnants of a proposed document for a more efficient worker in the Forge Vimana's working-class and slave districts. The one was made by the daughter of the Crystal Workshop's previous owner, who was well-loved around the Forge Vimana for her contributions to her father's work, which eased their daily toiling in the blasted heat of the forges.>Weak: Dark>Repel: Light>>677867>>677868
As the book flips open, a tired old stallion's voice speaks to you in Neighsco, which Pryce cannot understand.
>["Ah, sir. I trust you slept well? I do not know what is keeping the servants, but I assure you they shall be here anon bearing a fresh pot of tea. What shall I read for you this morning?"]
It's coming from the book.>>677870
Blessings approaches you, waving her hoof a bit frantically. "W-well, what happened? You can't just stop there!">>677869
A flash of red. A gray body. Is that? No, it's someone else. Between the overlapping voices, you find a faintly familiar laugh… but it's just some overlapping demon guffaws. But there's a smell. A familiar waft of alcohol…
"Who are you looking for?" Renee asks, concerned.>>677865
You see many groups of small demons looking into shop windows, hanging around one another, getting into minor fights at times. A tall palefaced paper doll riding on a camel, which you have never seen before, appears to be leading one group down this street, giving them a tour.
"Oh, there's no punch line," Amy says, waving a dismissive hoof, casually.
Then, after giving them both a moment to get it, she busts out laughing, rolling on the ground unable to control herself.
"Galloway Isle, lass. T's a bit south a' ere'. E' traveled all th' wae t' Obscurus, where e' met is' one true love. I'm sure ye can fig're out th' rest, lass," he finishes with a sly grin.
Blessings stands there with a disappointed frown. Well, she tries to look disappointed, but her lips soon press together and she succumbs to an annoyed laugh. "You're a demon in many ways, you tricky hussy," she says, letting herself have a full hearted laugh.
My grammar is bad on the King of Trash description. For clarity, the Crystal Workshop's previous owner is the father, and he's the one who's well-loved. The maker of the King of Trash is the daughter.
"What?! What do you mean there's no punch…. line…"
Flaming's eyes shrink to little dots, and she holds her muzzle with her hooves to keep the snickers in, "FPffffff… n-no punch… line, heheheehehe!" she stomps a hoof, "I-I get it! Punch-line! Like, the line for the drink wasn't there, but hehehe you also meant there wasn't an ending to the joke!" She smiles, "R-right?" She asks nervously, unsure if she interpreted it correctly. Pony humor can be so weird.
"YES!" Amy says, through her laughter, grabbing Flaming and pulling her down to the ground with her. She continues to roll back and forth with Flaming trapped in a vice-like hug as Amy giggles uncontrollably.
As she's pulled down, Flaming kicks her hooves and shouts, "YES! I got it! I got the joke, hahahaha!" She squeezes against Amy and tries to wiggle through, still giggling, "Hehehe, o-okay, Amy, it was funny, y-you can let me go now."
"Fiiiine," Amy huffs, through her giggles. She lets Flaming go and gets up.
Tonight is the conclusion of Shei-Sher's detour so as not to slow down the main thread. Post sheets and reply.
"I'll let you tug on them all you want when you get back! I have both my wings!" Laciela protests. "Ichimonji's got her hooves full right now, unfortunately. They think they have found the sheep responsible for some of the weird occurrences and demon appearances around Zha, so Ichimonji's on the team to take him out as proof of Ecclesia's innocence in the matter."
Little Journey doesn't notice you yet.
"It seems he hasn't told you what happened to him, neh?" Little Journey explains. "The fact that he's been able to communicate with anyone at all has been nothing short of astounding. You see, after the Rapture, he attempted to return to his Domain in the Beyond to fully regain his powers before pursuing the cowardly Devas. But, the Deva Enjoma anticipated this, and laid a trap there for Buiwong. Enjoma cut a hole in reality with the Blade, and shoved Buiwong partway through before closing the hole, effectively cutting him in half.
"But that is no way to kill a god. Buiwong's essence was split billions of ways across the endless expanse of Subspace, neither existing fully in our world or in another. He has only recently regained his capacity to communicate with anyone, but he has been guiding many ever since."
The black scrawl remains unbroken.
"Really?! That's great," Flaming gives a small sigh of relief through the conch, shaking her head. "We had to leave Zha quickly due to an angel attack, as I am sure she's heard. We think we have found the source of it and… uh, given some 'interesting' help, we should be able to stop it from ever happening again in the future."
She huffs, "Laciela, listen, this next part is extremely important. Your wing… I am sorry to be asking this of you, I understand it must be sort of embarrassing but, have you ever had anything bad happen to it in the past? Maybe before Ecclesia found you?"
She looks at Little Journey again, very eager to speak to a young buffalo like her, but waits for the conch call to finish up before she jumps into it.
"Yeah, we heard all about the Bodhidharma's appearance from the refugees. When you see the angels, tell 'em to kill the demons this time.
"I did get injured pretty badly once. Mariposa held out a really long time against the demons, but after a Marquis-ranked demon used a really, really, REALLY horrible chemical attack on the ponies living in the Comfy and Forge Vimanas, everyone else began to panic. There were riots and factions forming straightaway, and I knew from what mom and dad told me about the stuff happening in the courts and markets, this whole demon invasion was the last straw for ponies who had been looking for a reason to overthrow the crown.
"Demons were pouring into the city, and riots and battles were just getting worse, so me and Yareakh decided to run with some of the aristocrats' kids. We got pretty far before we were caught in a small, narrow canyon by some rebels who wanted to take us hostage. But, there was a demon up above who saw the fighting and decided to join the fun. He knocked down a rockslide onto all of us. This one guy, I saw his head come off and it got squished all over his friend…
"Uh…" Laciela pauses as if trying to remember. "Yeah we all got banged up real badly there. My wing was caught underneath a rock, but together, me and Yareakh were able to lift the rock and get it out, but it was still torn and bleeding pretty badly, until Doctor Galton and Sir Gegenschein saved us."
"Oh, if you only knew the circumstances… you won't believe this, but they actually managed to form a TRUCE with the demons in this city! It's an uneasy truce but, they're not killing each other. Crazy, right? Oh! And, there are at least a few Mariposans still here. Not all of them are well but, some of them are even fighting back like Evil's Judgement."
Afterwards, she listens to Laciela's story of when Mariposas was attacked and the ensuing rebellion. As the story turns gruesome, Flaming puts a hoof over her chest.
"And, after this rock crushed your wing, did it remain that badly damaged until Doctor Galton saved you? What did she do to fix you up after they all found you and brought you to Ecclesia's base? I'm… I'm a little worried to give you the details but, we have reason to believe a witch here in the city might have some kind of, 'copy' of your wing. I know that doesn't make a lot of sense but it's the honest truth!"
Laciela doesn't respond for a while after you mention the truce and the few surviving Mariposans. "Oh… okay. Thanks for keeping an eye on them. A lot of days… I start to wonder if there was more me and Yarry coulda done. Like, if we had appeased the Song more, or if we'd brought more people to the Grave Marriages… anyway."https://youtu.be/_sS5FEdqyTc
"Flaming," Laciela says with a high level of familiarity and friendliness limited to the closest of friends. Something in it makes you feel quite calm and trusting. "We should lay this to rest. Whatever she has, it's what you said yourself: A copy. Just a copy. It's not worth worrying about. If she thinks she's got a little souvenir of me, I'll just kick her ass before she can brag about it as if she had beaten the grrrrrreat Laciela!" she laughs, tone gradually returning to normal.
"No need to thank me, Laciela… I know what it's like to wonder how your people are doing. I actually found one of my own clan here as well." She frowns, "I… I don't know if I can answer that. There's always more we WANT to do, but, that's not the same as more you CAN do. But, there's no use going over it now. The past is the past, princess, it's what you do now that matters."
As the familiar and friendly tone sets over her, Flaming's body quivers as she feels Laciela's comforting voice, like a sister's calm her state of being and she slumps to the ground. "Oh… I-I mean, I understand that, if you say it is…" she grits her teeth, "N-no, wait, Laciela please, it's important! This witch might be an ally, not an enemy, but we can't make that call unless we know the whole truth. You DO know something, don't you?" She asks accusingly, "Please, I'm sorry about saying you had spiders in your hair, I'll explain that later too but please believe me when I say I want to HELP Mariposa."
[1d10] An attempt to convinceRoll #1 5 = 5
The sensation stops. "Look, I don't know any more than you! Yareakh's here too, and she saw that my wing was hurt, but not severed! And if my friends weren't busy with all the tinker-monkey work the Laity's making them do, I'd get them to testify too! I really don't remember getting my wing cut off! How much longer are we gonna fixate on this?
She grunts with annoyance. "Although I really don't know why a witch would go to the trouble of replicating JUST my wing, if that's really a replica. Is she making a whole me? Can you just go and ask her where she got it?"
Shei-Sher breaks from his work on the Gigginox to reply to Little Journey
"I think I've met a piece of Buiwong. Sitting at the root of some vast wyrm that claimed to be the claw of God. Thank you, that paints a more sincere picture of Buiwong. For one reason or another I couldn't help but picturing him lounging on a straw chair by a beach shore in his new plane. It's remarkable that you'd know so much of the going abouts in the beyond. Praytell, what is your place in all these matters?"
"You really don't know then?" Flaming asks, shuffling her hooves somewhat guilty along the ground. "I'm sorry to push it, Princess, I… I just wanted to be sure. I don't really know if I can just ASK her that, I'm not even sure if we can trust her entirely. I think there must be some way to find out though. I hate to ask, but can I ask your sister if she knows anything…?"
"I think she just wants you for your magic though. All i've seen of your wing is a single feather. She uses it to write words and then, whatever word she writes, happens to whatever it is she is writing ON. It's incredible."
"I am from the Clan Sinking-Rain, first calf of the great warrior Pillar-Breaker. Sadly, during a territorial fight with the Clan Climbing-Fire, who were under Buiwong's leadership, I was beaten and captured to be a war slave. Just like when I had been captured in years past by Sleeping-Stone and Living-Wind, my father expected me to escape by myself.
"Yet, while those clans treated me and other slaves so poorly, shaming us for our weakness in battle, Climbing-Fire was a whole different world. I was regarded as an equal, and made to work no more than I could bear. Though the Highland's various racial tribes, the deer, buffalo and dogs, always quarreled in the outside tribes, Buiwong's leadership unified all the racial groups in a harmony they'd never seen. He would reclaim our lands, restore glory and our old charging fields, and end the ponies' subjugation of our people! He had been wronged just as we had! Why would I want to leave?
"So when the Rapture happened, I abandoned the weak Sinking-Rain Clan, but Climbing-Fire did not feel the need to 'accept' me. As far as they cared, I was already their brother. Those of us who remained faithful to him, he guided us every day, defending us against the demons as we marched northwest, to where he was gathering many other followers of his. Many of my tribe are now safely living in a small country called Amlapura, southeast of here many weeks' journey. But unfortunately many had lost faith and fallen away on the journey here.">>681699
"Huh, trust her? So you've been talking with her for a while now? YAREAKH, C'MERE!"
You hear Yareakh and Laciela bicker on the line for a while, then some shuffling sounds, presumably as the two sisters squish their heads together so they can both hear and talk.
"Hi, Flaming. You're consorting with witches now and you're eating her poop stew? That's really gross, you know," Yareakh says scoldingly. "But this magic, anyway… that's weird. None of Laciela's powers have anything to do with writing, and she's barely literate to boot!"
"Yeah, a lot, actually. It's all very important, the moment Ichimonji is free to speak you MUST tell her to contact me. It involves a plan for stopping the demons from destroying everything, a real possible solution too."
As the two sisters bicker back and forth on the line, Shorty pulls her head back a bit as Yareakh comes on. She pulls her head back to the conch and shouts, "WHAT?! I am NOT eating witch poop stew, you take that back right now!" She shouts angrily.
After she calms down, she states, "Oh, well, that's understandable. I can barely read or write either, though I have a good excuse. Hmmm… so she might just be borrowing her power then from the wing's 'data' I think I heard it called. If I brought back a piece of it, could you two tell what it is?"
Shei-Sher harbors admonishing feelings for the buffalo's tale. He feels compelled to speak his feelings truly on the matter but he thinks that might be very good of his demi-god image. And though Shei knew there would be nothing good to come out of such a conversation, he can't help himself.
"Haha now that was the cause to originally make me so contemptuous of Buiwong. Aye, our stories of opposite worlds. I come from an upbringing of slavery as-well. Quite lush in comparison beside the menagerie of horrors that come with serving an occultist, but in contrast I was ostracized by every caste in my community. Slaves and Griffon alike -my unique place in society was considered unacceptable but Crowley ensured I would live. I think it is fortunate Hearthome became rubble before your people could reclaim their land. It would be a stain on Accorsian history for a philistine God and legion of equal rapport to conquer a nation-state of high civility. I apologize for being so forthright on this Day of Slavery. I joined with Buiwong because it was convenient in saving my people, even if they never treated me like one of their own and still to certain extent, I felt it was my higher purpose to lead the Goats and they so desperately needed a Shepherd."
"However that was tangential to my question. How do you know so much? Who are you to Buiwong? Not to sound rude."
"Hmmmmm, don't like it so much when someone's spreading rumors about you, do you?" Laciela smugly says.
"Wasn't that just a misunderstanding on our part and not a rumor that Flaming spread?" Yareakh asked.
"Oh, I'm sure that's what she'd love to claim, but now we're even.">>681701
"Be super careful if you try to bring it back," Yareakh says. "Anything a witch tinkers around with could melt the bedrock. It'd be especially dangerous now. There's some kind of sickness going around Zha, but it seems like it's only affecting people who know some kind of healing abilities or magic, so we have to quarantine them and all the refugees we've let in recently. If the wing did something awful, it could be much worse than normal.">>681702
"It was? Oh, my mistake. I get excited when I'm talking about him. Like Vortigern and the Dragon, he has appointed me to the team he has constructed to replace River Spring, Tantra, Shining Light and Septum Axis. He is aware of all their whereabouts, and has worn off his presence on them. Thus, he can see and feel through the as though they were his spider. Fear not, for Sardonyx is with him again at long last. It was because of how raggedly I had worn myself in defending Climbing-Fire during our exodus, even though I am not related to them by blood. You mentioned that he seemed uncaring of you at times? Well, perhaps it is like what I heard you mention earlier, how eastern wizards toy cruelly with those whom they like. Truly, there must be some good reason why he has not spoken to you yet, but I have faith your time is near. He has rewarded me greatly, so just think how much more he shall reward you!"
Shei-Sher wears a very squimish expression accompanied by a nervous smile at the comment.
>so just think how much more he shall reward you!"
"That frightens me. I pray to whoever hears that Buiwong doesn't play by the customs of eastern wizards. I have met Tantra only just recently. Chummy pony, but a bit too loud for me to hold company with. RiverSpring on the other hoof, I wish she would give Buiwong another chance and join my cause. I am still testing the waters with her, but she is prone to recoiling at the mention. I think a reunion between her and Shining Light would be heartwarming. Precisely what River needs after so much hardship. I can't say I am acquainted with either Septum Axis or Sardonyx. Perhaps my memory fails me. Is there any method of swift contact I might have you? Little Journey, Vortigern -er Dragon? My kingdom come's soon and with it a journey to Buiwong. I imagine this is something you might aid me in."
Flaming growls in retort, "I was NOT spreading rumors, you only thought I was! I don't spread silly gossip around like some silly ponies do."
As Yareakh comes to her defense, she nods her head, "THANK YOU Yareakh. It's good to know someone knows what's really going on.">>681703
"The sickness is mostly affecting the healers…? I don't remember any illness being this bad and we didn't leave but a few days ago. Tell them to try as hard as they can to find the cause, if it's anything to do with the cloud that came from here, we'll find it."
"As to the wing… if it is dangerous, I will keep it away then, but someone should analyze it. Can Galton look at it back in town?"
She looks over at the dragon, the pegasi, and the buffalo especially with impatience, "Listen, again: I need you to go get Ichimonji as soon as you can, I need to tell her about what the witch told us personally, it's too important."
[I mean buffalo]
"You know what, Flaming? Ichimonji's not your personal surrogate mama. We'll pass along the message, but you gotta be patient," Laciela says.
"We'll tell Doctor Galton," Yareakh says. "She and the other Choir members here in Zha have their hooves full because of the huge influx of refugees we've been getting. It's complicated, but for a number of reasons, the Choir thinks that the demons are trying to get as many refugees into Zha as possible. For what, nopony knows, but it can't be good. If you can get the wing though, she'll totally look at it."
The savage-looking Vortigern is staring holes through your head.>>681704
"If that kingdom is what Buiwong told you to do, best of luck. But if he has remained silent on the matter yet, I would not follow through on it if I were you. I know he is going to play his hoof soon. Don't you think it's strange that so much of Accorsia has headed from the southeastern corner of Huoli, all the way to the northwest? Ecclesia, my tribe, Accorsian angels, all of us… It is because Buiwong has been nudging us this way. He can only control so much, but like a harpist at her instrument, all he requires is to lay the very corner of his hoof upon the string to send causal vibrations all throughout. We are here for a purpose."
"I see your friend has a Caller Conch. To reach me, the whisper-wind is 'The Bridge of Threads is strumming.'"
Flaming gasps, "W-what?! I… I know that! I just, I'm in Ecclesia now, and she's my leader so, it's important that I tell her stuff, you know? It involves making a deal with the witch so I can't exactly just tell it to anypony!" She says, clearly telling it to somepony.
To Yareakh, she says, "They're TRYING to fill it with refugees…? That's weird. Try your best to keep everything under control, I don't know if all demons would know what is being planned but, if there is some demon that knows what the purpose of sending them all to Zha is, I can find it here."
"I think that's everything at the moment. Just, get back to me quickly before…" She pauses as she sees Vortigern staring holes at her, the buffalo feeling quite nervous as she looks on at the pegasus. "W-what? Do I have something on my face?" She asks, before narrowing her gaze, "I'm not the only one who looks goofy here you know."
Shei-Sher's eyebrows raise and his face brightens by the sudden revelation.
"That's why! That is why Shining Light, Gegenschein, and Galton are within the ranks of Ecclessia! Well that certainly explains a lot. I do think my people deserve their own kingdom, but I suppose I will post-pone my aspirations for my curiosities. Whatever Buiwong is concocting I do hope it's not as spectacular as shattering the sky above."
Shei-Sher walks a few paces away from the three and the Gigginox "Spare a moment. I have been meaning to introduce you to someone Little Journey. Please refrain from mentioning word of Buiwong.">>681707>>681705
Shei-Sher ambles over to where Flaming had been speaking into her conch. "Flaming Shorthorns? Are you finished? It's time I introduce you." Shei-Sher leads her back to the three surrounding Shei's Gigginox.
"Little Journey, Vortigen, Dragon I would like to introduce you to Flaming Shorthorns. Flaming Shorthorns" with a hoof Shei gestures to each. "meet Journey, Vortigen, and Dragon."
"Well, don't think that the rest of the Congregation and Laity don't have questions about why she seems like your favorite, so soon after you joined us," Laciela says. "I'm just saying this for your own good. Some folks who have been here for months and months barely get any recognition from the Choir."
"We don't know who's ordering it, but this is too big of a happening to disregard as coincidence," Yareakh says. "The Choir thinks it's signaling that there are demon warlords who are managing to accomplish the impossible by unifying and organizing demons rather than just letting 'em run free."
"A DEAL with a witch!? Okay, you DEFINITELY want to tell Galton instead of Ichimonji… she's the only one who'd probably listen," Laciela says. "She's a little more friendly with the occult than Ichimonji; Ichimonji would break your snout for suggesting an alliance with practitioners of dark arts."
"Such a task shall seem trivial to the wonders he desires to perform, and yet those wonders will be for the good of all - angel, demon, mortal… even Deva.">>681708>>681709
"Excuse me, my name is pronounced, _____
protests, clearly enjoying the confusion called by the empty sound of his 'name.'
Vortigern silently stares at both of you, her mane a ragged, unkempt mess. Her face is marked with lines, suggesting she's probably around a mother's age, and her feathers are all out of place and unclean.
Flaming flattens her ears a bit, "Oh… I… w-well, I haven't really met the rest of the choir yet. Ichimonji is the reason I'm IN Ecclessia, who else would I report to?"
"All the same, I… I'm not sure if I feel like telling that to Galton," she says, remembering what she's been told about Galton's 'odd' sway over the princesses and how it might tie into Buiwong's schemes. "Ichimonji can yell at me all she likes, I'm used to it.">>681711>>681710
As Shei stumbles back over to Flaming, she looks at him with surprise as she drags him back to the giggionx. She looks at the pet, petting it lightly with a hoof before looking at the others.
"Oh… well, that is an odd name for a dragon but, well met Pronounced!" She bows her head low, "I-it is truly an honor to be in your presence. As it is for any buffalo to meet a dragon. Y-your scales look very hard and tough, if I might add." She turns to look at Vortigern, still fluffing up her ears and looking at her with confusion as she stares, and says, "Hi there," before turning to Little Journey last. She smiles widely at him, "And h-hello! You don't know how happy I am to see another of us here!" She shouts, before ramming her head into his roughly in a traditional buffalo hello
[1d10] slamming my head on hisRoll #1 6 = 6
"Do not mind the dragon. He is merely a tease. and I suspect Vortigen's stare is the most of a conversation you with her. However I imagine you and Little Journey have much to talk about."
Shei-Sher smiles seeing Flaming butt her head with Little Journey. Know this is an amicable greeting. Now able to focused Shei-Sher returns to freeing his Gigginox. He works double diligently his preparations. Afraid if he can't remove Mudi's curse he will have go seeking out her feather. Laying scrolls and adapting symbols from his books. He tries for a spell more precise. Shei-Sher takes his finished charm and wraps a piece of wool over it. With the thing he has made Shei slowly but firmly rubs off the ink letters written on his Gigginox.
[1d10+1] SpellBreakerRoll #1 3 + 1 = 4
"A bunch of ponies can say that Ichimonji's the reason they're in Ecclesia. Just don't go thinking that you'll get special treatment, especially when she's pretty busy trying to stop whoever's bringing demons into Zha right now," Yareakh says. "Anyway, we have to go. Bye!">>681712>>681713
"Don't get mad if she doesn't speak," _____
says, gesturing at Vortigern. "Her voice is on loan to another."
Little Journey returns the head-smash to Flaming, leaving her legs shaky. "Likewise! Have you kept up your prayers to Buiwong?" he asks cheerfully.
The writing smudges away for a moment, but the black scrawl re-configures itself, reading "VIOLENT"
The gigginox's tail slaps Shei across the garden against the wall of a nearby shed. He loses 3 Hits.
Flaming takes that to heart, wondering if she has been asking too much of Ichimonji during her short time in the organization. "R-right… bye. Good luck.">>681713>>681714
"The dragon…? You mean Pronounced? He is a bit odd, but…" she takes a second look at the flying dragon, her eyes squinting as she takes a closer look at his form. "I… I'm sorry, I was so excited to see a dragon I might not have noticed but, is he made of… paper? Is he not a REAL dragon?" She huffs, almost sounding a little defeated.
She asks _____
"Oh! I'm sorry. Mudi didn't steal it from you, did she?">>681714
As her head is smashed upon quite enthusiastically by her fellow buffalo, Flaming quivers with excitement, about ready to bounce in joy at the familiar sensation. As he asks the fatal question though, she immediately stops, looking at him as one would look at a dead body. "WHAT!? I-is that supposed to be some kind of joke because, I didn't think it was funny, Little Journey.">>681713
After hearing Buiwong mentioned, she pulls at Shei's fur and asks, "What CLAN is he from?"
"Ba-a-h!" Shei bleats as Mudi's curse retaliates. "Curses. I was certain that would do it."
Shei kneels on the ground beside his Gigginox. He puts a hoof on the side of his head and leans over his pet. Wearing an annoyed expression when Little Journey mentions Buiwong to Flaming.>>681715
Before she might blow up at Little Journey's response Shei swiftly interjects "Flaming, is Mudi in the cabin? What was she last doing?
"Climbing Fire, same as you Shorthorns." Shei-Sher responds with acute annoyance.
Flaming huffs, "She was getting a visit from her sister, Vizsla is here as well and I think she wants to help us again. Amy was trying to talk to both of them," she frowns, "I don't know if she's still mad at you though. Sorry. You probably won't get thrown up on again though.">>681717
"I guess that explains why he thinks highly of Buiwong but, NOT after the Firmament broke! Are you sure he isn't some Stone idiot who's been hiding under a rock?!"
>>681718>You probably won't get thrown up on again though."
"That is fantastic to hear because I have new garments now and I prefer it's original color" Shei says ever more vexed.>>681718
"Why the grievance for immigration. What of the colorful culture we are to be enriched with?" Shei says sarcastically with poor humor.
"She lent her voice to Buiwong," _____
says. "My name vanished many years ago. I deserve to be at the top of the dragon families of Ornifex, so I challenged the elder family to ritual dual known as Prokolot. Yet, the cowardly new rulers refused to honor this rite. When I cast the first blow at the patriarch anyway, I was punished. I was unnamed.
"So when I heard that a bitter little mother of three from one of the tribes of unwashed savages in the Ornifex mountains had become a serial killer against the ruling elite of Ornifex… and even broke the scales of a dragon's neck, I thought I'd join her. If they wouldn't listen to a duel, they'd listen to a warhammer.">>681715
"So you have fallen away. I empathize with your loss, but do not sympathize with it," Little Journey says. You recognize that his coat is much much thicker than yours. That is a common trait among the Sinking-Rain buffalo, who have to endure much ritual rainfall summoning dances as well as swim in their territories. "Know that Buiwong has taken good care of the faithful members Tribe, guiding them to a land called Amlapura, where they are safe."
members of our Tribe*
"What did I say about saying his name, what did I say what did I say." Shei-Sher iterates to himself as he buries his face in his Gigginox's torso
"I noticed," she says, pulling at the disguise he put on. "This is a dress. Why are you wearing a dress?" She smiles, "Did Novelus make it look fuuuuuun?" She teases.>>681720
"That… that's incredible. Buffalo have duels all the time too but, losing one's name? What an odd practice the dragons are known for." She says, looking up at him with grandeur. She turns towards Vortigen, "So you're both from Ornifex like Zjetya? I've thought of going there, just to see more dragons. You're a mama? Why did you become a… a serial killer?">>681720
"The faithful…?!" Flaming looks at his coat, recognizing the familiar Sinking-Rain thickness but too fraught with anger to ask Shei why he said he was from Climbing Fire. She moves in on him, "The only reason we need a new home in the FIRST place is because of that… that… that traitorous, ugly, stupid jerk! H-he MADE the demons come down and destroy our home, what do you mean he's still leading us?" She asks.
"Climbing Fire served him faithfully once, but after what happened I'll be thrown in the Sleeping Dragon before I see another of my clan worshiping him. If you even ARE of my clan."
"It's a shame you can't see things the way the faithful do. Our people's service to Buiwong was never without purpose, and these greater trials are nothing more but the breath of the Sleeping Dragon coming awake to harden us and burn through our weakness. Buiwong had been wrongfully imprisoned by the Devas, just as our people were wrongfully imprisoned and relegated to a small portion of land by the ponies. Just as the ponies did to the Changelings and Dragons, whom they drove from Accorsia. Buiwong will one day restore our lands to the fullest. Wouldn't you rather stampede on a massive, empty grass plain, instead of dodging about in the cramped forests and valleys that we've had to endure for so long? Can't you see what he has to offer?">>681723
Vortigern pats the side of _____
's head, and ______
begins to explain.
Hailing from the Osi tribe of Ornifex, Vortigern was next in line for ascension to Clan Mother. In Ornifex, a casting of lots is performed every five years among the native tribes to determine who among the tribes' children shall be taken across Yongning-si as servants for the Dragon Knights, never to be seen again by the outside world. Vortigern, in an attempt to spare her tribe's young mothers the horror of surrendering a child, rigged the lots so that she drew all three lots for her tribe. However, she vastly overestimated her ability to endure the unbearable weight of loss, and was driven to a bloody madness. She is now reviled by the ruling elite of Ornifex as a mass murderer and terrorist, who has also committed the unforgivable sin of murdering a dragon.
"For your information! A seasoned professional in the ways of fashion said it looked nice on me. And I am going make amendments to it in place of a unisex garb.">>681723
"So you are fine with a serial killer but worshiping a god that wanted to return home is where you cross the line? Have you taken into consideration there are members of your clan that haven't lost faith as you have?"
Shei-Sher takes his face out from his pet's side
"You murdered a dragon!" he is genuinely impressed "You have my applause" He brings up his hooves to clap briefly.
She says with a stomp of her hoof. "Yeah, I KNEW THAT! I-I know buffalo getting a raw deal was the whole reason we signed on with him in the first place, we had that in common, but don't you see where that's gotten us?! Our homes… they're gone! We're WORSE now than we ever were with Accorsia's ponies. Demons probably have flattened the Sleeping Dragon, rendered our forests to cincders… so, now we're doing all we can to stop the demons, or at least I am, and what is Buiwong doing? NOTHING."
"Ho-how can you say he still has followers? Do you even know where our clan is, because I sure don't.">>681724
"T-they take children from ponies as servants? I didn't know. Are you saying she sacrificed her own family so others wouldn't have to endure that?" She frowns, "Well… what happened to her children after that? Are they okay?">>681725
She chuckles non-stop, "Oh, it looks VERY nice. You're pretty as Dania ever was. Are you thinking of asking out Pryce or Flow? I think you can date more than one pony at a time so Amy won't get mad.">>681725
She growls as he takes Journey's side, "A single pony's actions can't compare to what BUIWONG has done to the world. And if there are any who still follow him, I'll smack them up until they think straight."
"Don't congratulate us!" _____
says. "We snuffed out the life of a minor one at best. We have neither reason nor urge to celebrate until we have toppled the patriarch and his kin."
"That's what we'll discover along the cloudy path to the top," _____
"They are very near, hiding in a country called Amlapura. Like your Ecclesia, like the Accorsian angels… and like you, Buiwong nudged and guided them to the northwest, all in according with his greater design."
Little Journey winces as you point out some legitimate grievances and fears. "If a parent does everything for a calf, will the calf learn to do anything for himself?" he asks. "Perhaps a religious discussion wasn't the best topic for an introduction. May I take you out on a run? Oh! What day is it? Did the Hearts and Horns Dance already pass us?"
"You will have time for that later," _____
says. "But you dawdle too much here. All of that we will have time to think on later, after Mudi, Vizsla and Lord Buiwong establish a country of peace soon enough."
Lamp, Journey, Vortigern and
start to lead the both of you back to the cottage.
shei-Sher face contorts wildly in disgust "Eughk! Don't even insinuate such a thing! That is repulsive Flaming!"
"We are in agreement. I am merely suggesting that it isn't outrageous to presume that members of your tribe remain faithful. Especially since Buiwong did succeed in wreaking havoc upon Hearthome during his leave."
>Vice and trapper
"Hell yeah, let's do this!" the dino demon says, turning around. His smoky body doesn't have shoulders to begin with though, so this might be a tricky operation.
Mocha holds up a rag silently, the same kind she tried to throw at the capra demon.
>Flow and Observer
Neither Vortigern nor the dragon are able to wrestle Tunguska the bunyip into submission. Tunguska chortles, then laughs, and finally starts giggling uncontrollably, much to the embarrassment of Vortigern and to the consternation of the dragon.
"Bastard… a guy like you always has a weakness. I'll find it, alright… and if not, you'll get one." _____ snarls.
>Flaming, Amy, Pryce
The dog seems genuinely confused. "Hmm? Oh. I'm guessing you're foreigners, aren't you? You're all probably from a place where slaves are treated like shit. That's not the case around here. Even before the demons came around, being a slave was a highly-sought gig if you could find a rich master. Food, a clean bed, sometimes even a stipend for your labor. Nowadays, becoming a slave to a strong demon is the only way a weak person can guarantee their survival, with how violent and barren the rest of the world is. We are quite literally saving lives by doing this. But, if you want to kill these ponies by condemning them to die out in the wastes, you can try to stop us."
"Can we not have this conversation when the whole street is on fire?" one thug asks.
"Oh! I totally forgot!" the leader says. "Right, we should be off. So, buh-bye."
"Well, I just had a question," the thug (a stout red donkey) whose friend you allegedly ate, says. "Uhh… there's no easy way to ask this: How did he taste?"
Volkama approaches. "Shei, can you dare explain why you decided to smoke a sample of one of the world's most dangerous and addictive biochemical weapons, potentially affecting us with addiction as well?"
River then disappears down a dark corridor.
"Oh no, we're coming with you."
Pryce interjects to the pack leader's farewell.
"We need to talk to Splitz, and you're not stopping us.">>685686>"Yea Shei. You saw what that stuff did to all those ponies, it's fake happiness! If you needed to cheer up you could have just asked me to do some tricks for ya."
Kid Pryce says, starting out sternly and ending with a concerned tone that almost sounds like he wants Shei to ask for a trick.
But as River forms a dark corridor, KP turns and quickly runs through after her.
Shei-Sher feels the shame hang over him like a corpse. He is far too depressed from his encounter with Miracle to respond with nervous laughter.
"I.. It was the only way to counteract her mind-controlling capabilities.." he realizes that's not very specific "Er.. you see -I.." Volkama should notice the apparent youth and loss of vigor in Shei-Sher's stature, now shorter and more nubile, he appears to be about twelve years old. Shei-Sher takes out the core from his bag thinking it might better explain what he was doing. "I was fighting an angel. I'm so sorry, i-if that death of me, I would not of been here to stop the Joy from spreading." He hangs his head low.
Shei-Sher notices River had left via her god given teleport. He grimaces, thinking she left without him to fantasia. He can only hope he brings him some medication as well.
"I need to clean the bathroom." Shei-Sher stows away the orb and gets to acquiring cleaning materials from the closet "Er.. friend?" Shei addresses KP "Care to, lend a hoof?"
>Also, reposting this from the 4chan thread
Pryce 9/5 (9/5)
Flaming 8/6 (8/7)
Amy 7/5 (7/5)
Flow 11/5 (11/5)
Observer 7/6 (7/6)
Shei 8/4 (8/5)
>Please check if these are accurate and correct me if I'm wronghttps://desuarchive.org/mlp/thread/30004579/#30006032
Last time on HQ…
Amy, Flaming, Pryce, Busta and LJ tracked down a squad of the Banana Splitz gang, while the squad was hunting down mortals to take as slaves amid the chaos in the Cozy Vimana. The squad refused to take Amy to their leader, as they were too busy.
After losing his battle with Miracle, Shei lost even more of his Data: The leftover essence of Gabby, which he had inherited from the Archetypal Data Pillars in the Everfree forest. He lost his ability to use her seal, as well as her power of controlling her sealed targets. Not only that, but he was now fated to die in about 24 hours from JOY withdrawal, unless he could get the addiction antidote and undergo rehabilitation.
Not to mention whatever might come of the pitch-black arrow he obtained from the Claw of God.
Observer and Flow journeyed north with Vortigern and the dragon, before they were stopped by a bunyip in their way who wanted to arm-wrestle them.
Mocha, Trapper and Vice were stopped by a demon who wanted a shoulder rub. Only, because the demon was a snake made of smoke, he had no shoulders.
>>685688>i-if that death of me
i-if that had been the death of me
KP quickly rambles out as he runs after her.
Trapper clasps his hooves together.>>"Now mate, just be warned, this might be so good, that you fookin knock out, alright?"
He winks at Mocha right before he starts massaging the demon's non-existent shoulders.
Flow huffs, and rolls his arm around.
"Alright alright, I'll show you what for! I'm just not at full power!"
He goes another round with the bunyip.
[1d10+2]Roll #1 1 + 2 = 3
Observer shrinks down back to his normal size, however his form has yet to shift back to his very feminine looking pony body. He hovers there as he ponders for a moment.
As he thinks, he continues to scan the bunyip in silence.
>Analyze: Seek weaknesses
[1d10+1]Roll #1 7 + 1 = 8
As the dog gives them the run-around on the slaves, Flaming growls, "You know, we've MET your slaves before. I would hardly call you saving lives based on what we saw back in Circadia."
She looks up at Pryce, and nods in agreement, "Yeah, we're not going anywhere without talking to Splitz. Now, are you going to point us in the right direction or not?"
>[1d10] Rolling a pre-emptive perception roll to search in case they tell us to find him on our ownRoll #1 8 = 8
Shei-Sher's frown deepens as he finds KP has left him with Volkama
"Well," Amy says conversationally in response to the question. "It's kinda hard to say. I don't remember exactly who you're talking about. Diamond Dogs taste kinda bad. Too tough too. Most other things taste like chicken. Except griffons, for some reason."
Amy rubs her chin in thought, contemplating why that would be. "I guess their meat is more liony and less birdy. Cats taste gross. There's nothing good about cats."
[1d10]Roll #1 4 = 4
Flaming freezes up, looking at Amy wearily.
"You don't know what… buffalo taste like, do you?"
"Sorry, but we've got business to attend to. If you want to hang out with us and come back once we're done, that's fine. Just give us a holler if you see anyone who needs help," the dog says as his soldiers fan out.
Flaming sees that the street you're on continues south for a long way. Past the boundary of the fires, the buildings look to have been flattened all at once, and mountains of debris choke all the streets which connect to this one, effectively making it a chokepoint. >>685688
"Fighting an angel!?" Volkama exclaims. He snatches your bag and peers inside. "But, where? I see no angels here, just this…" he looks again at Miracle's core. "Oh. That must be it, then. But… why? And how? And how did you lose against a goddamn ball?"
"Does that even matter?" Zjetya asks. "The big question is, why the hell were you doing that by yourSELF!?"
"I'm baaack!" you hear Onion say from the entrance.
The arrow vibrates subtly in your grasp.>>685696
"More liony… less birdy," the thug repeats. You notice that he is writing down your description on a sheet of parchment. As he speaks you see that he has big, wolf-sized canines, despite being a donkey. "Now, did you eat him raw, cooked, stir fried? What do you recommend as far as spices and meal prep go?">>685687https://youtu.be/MRbO6HV9-6U
As you head down the dark corridor with River, you notice that she is crying silently.
Shortly, the corridor leads you to the outskirts of Fantasia, where a soft cool rain falls. The city is in much better state than you last saw it in. Many fairy tale creatures, mostly animals, stand as guards upon the fortified ramparts. In the streets, you see refugees and fairies going about their business. They look a little lean, but unharmed. It's almost a semblance of normal, pre-demon life.
River leads you to the alchemist laboratory where Orcus produced the JOY using the Crud. She stops at the doors and sighs nervously. The elegant renaissance-style building has been given a new coat of paint, and repaired. The magitech factory which it was connected to has been mostly torn down.>>685692>>685693
Flow is unable to move Tunguska's arm. Tunguska yawns and props himself up with the other hand. "Well, what a shame, neither strong in the head nor in the arms. Posh. Oh well. You ought to just go back the way you came; you will not pass me today."
Observer realizes that the bunyip, despite his size, is not stronger than four individuals pooling all their strength together as one.
The dragon spreads out his neck-frills, tripling his size. "This is a meaningless waste of time! I am an envoy of the gods! You must let me pass at least!"
Tunguska looks around. "What gods? Only me around here."
"Bastard…!" the dragon growls.>>685697
Mocha rolls her eyes. Trapper massages the demon to the best of his ability, but the demon doesn't seem too impressed. "Okaaay, I guess you can pass but don't quit your day job."
The demon dissipates his smoke, and lets you pass. As you continue along the road, a thick red mist clouds the way forward. There are many corpses underfoot, both mortal and demon. You cannot see much of what is ahead of you, as the mist is quite thick. "I don't know if we should go this way…" Mocha wonders aloud.
"You know…" Amy puts her hoof to her chin pensively. "I don't think I do. Buffalo kind of keep to themselves so I haven't really interacted with them much."
Then, she smiles. "If you want, I could find out," she says, followed by a playful nip at Flaming's face.>>685699
"It was usually a spur of the moment thing, so usually raw. But, cooked is always-" she stops herself.
"Woah woah woah!" she waves her hooves frantically. "No! I'm not suggesting you eat anyone! It's definitely NOT a road you want to go down. Trust me."
"Are you… having demon troubles?" she asks awkwardly as if she's asking about an STD.
"And we have business too. So how about you tell us where Splitz is and we can leave it at that?"
Pryce states again.
"Surely you don't have anything to worry about, and neither would Splitz. We're only five against a gang leader, he can only gain from anything that might happen."
Pryce says, trying to coerce the dog into giving up the information.>Coerce [1d10]>>685699
KP after River as he tries to catch up, but slows as he notices the crying. He walks behind her, a little unsure of how to help cheer her up when she was drugged with something that forces happiness.
He looks around at the sights, part of him wanting to stare in awe and taking in the fantastic sights to his child eyes, but there's a pony that needs help and that's more important!
He steps up beside River as she stops at the door, raising a hoof of comfort as high as he can reach to her shoulder (his reach only going up to the upper leg).>"I'm here for you, if you need anything or any help."
He says to River, giving a light smile through the rain.Roll #1 3 = 3
Flaming smiles awkwardly as Amy admits to not knowing the taste of buffalo, but as the pony nips at her face the calf gives a loud yelp and darts back behind Pryce, taking behind his wing for cover as she scatters. "N-nope! I don't want you to find out, nuh-uh. You can have Pryce instead, alright?">>685699
As the dog and his soldiers fan out, Flaming groans. "We don't have time to 'help' him, we're just here to talk down Splitz. We have to find him before things get even crazier."
She takes a look through the burning city streets, towards the flattened buildings and mountain of debris towards the chokepoint. She stares at it.
"You know… if I was invading this city fighting an army much larger than mine, I'd base ourselves behind a choke point to take away the advantage of numbers. Let's check out that way, everyone. Follow me!" Flaming shouts as she leads the way
"It's far more difficult than playing ball you dense coot!" shei-Sher grabs his head as a headache pangs and sends painful shivers down his entire frame "Sorry -I'm not feeling well."
Shei-Sher has grabbed a bucket, soap and some sponges from the nearby supply closet and gets to scrubbing the condensated Joy off the surfaces of the bathroom. As he does so he answers Zjetya "Because, this was my dance to do with Miracle. When I was in the birdcage, I tapped into the deepest catacombs of her mind, we were engaged in thrilling and deadly conversation! When she passed away she had the good grace to pass along her hindbrain so we might reach a conclusion. In there is the other half of my philosophy. If I could take it from her I could reverse the transformation of ponies to angels and demons, I have no doubt about it. But I lost, and I've lost so much. Abandon any ideas you are entertaining Volkama she is far more powerful than the sum of our company's powers. I only held a chance in hell because of my abilities to assert control over minds. But she has confiscated that from me in exchange for my life."
Pryce looks back at Flaming as she uses him as a shield.
"Nopony is eating anypony today, alright?"
Pryce says to both of them like they're children.
Shei-Sher notices the Arrow's vibration and appraises it with his own eye.>so now that I have withdrawal I got -1s to all actions right?
He doesn't pay any mind to Onion's arrival.Roll #1 5 = 5
Flaming points out at Amy, "She started it, she said she wanted to try a bite outta me!" She holds up the wing, "I bet these are tastier anyhow, right?"
Amy laughs. "Hmm. I wonder if Alicorns taste better.">>685704
"I was just playing!" Amy whines childishly.
"Are you TELLING on me!?" Amy squeaks, offended. "I thought you were better than that!"
Flow puffs his cheeks out and points at Tunguska.
"Just you wait, we'll find a way across soon enough!"
Both Vice and Trapper warily eye the place around them.>>"Aye lass, we oughta be leavin ere.">"Quite. The amount of corpses around here are certainly not easing my worry…this gas might be toxic and we wouldn't know it."
"I don't care who started it, I'm ending it."
Pryce pulls his wing out of Flaming's hoof.
"I only have two, so nopony will get a chance to find out.">>685707
"This isn't the time for play!"
"He never stated that we may try all at once." Observer says to the others. He turns his attention back to the bunyip, prepared to arm wrestle again. "We will attempt once more, together."
Flaming squeals back at Amy, "My survival instincts kicked in, I didn't have a choice! What do you care, aren't you to old to get in trouble?">>685710
Flaming grumps as he pulls the wing away. "She STILL started it."
Flow twists his head around.
"Oh yeah, you're right."
He gets his arm ready once more
The two clones try looking through the mist for another route.
V: [1d10]Roll #1 7 = 7
/ Roll #2 4 = 4
"Aren't YOU too old to be telling on ponies!?" Amy shoots the blame back at Flaming.
"Just stay out here, and do not come inside. I will be back in a minute." River says. She enters the laboratory.>>685700
"Huh? Demon trouble? No, our demons are pretty cooperative if you're stronger than them. Oh, you mean these!" he points at his big canines. "Nah, I'm not a demon. I went to a fleshweaver and had him give me these teeth. Now I can eat whoever I want. I'd been thinking about joining this circle of cannibals I'd heard about who live near Nibbuta, and then you showed up! What good timing, right?"
"He's promised to eat us when we die," another thug chimes in, "You know, so that a demon can't have us.">>685703
"Wait a moment… you lost your ability to control minds?" Volkama asks. "Well, I fail to see the problem there. I'm sure she'll hold it there for safekeeping." He picks up the core and rolls it around a little. "And the fact that nothing is happening to me right now shows that she doesn't seem able to use it on me from inside there. The problem is solved! Bwahahaha. Now we can be friends again! All is right with the world.">>685705>You have not entered withdrawal yet, so no. In 12 hours you will suffer withdrawal's penalties
Remarkably, you have an easier time appraising it with your naked eye than with Pupil. It seems that Pupil has some kind of aversion to it.>Vae Victis>Effect: Upon a successful hit, the target's DC to Hit next turn becomes 0, such that even a critfail succeeds against them.
A voice comes from within Vae Victis, a withered and weak one. "You cannot get something for nothing…">Listen further?
The dragon pauses and then bonks his own head against a tree. "Are you goddamned serious!?"
Vortigern laughs silently, the closest thing the two of you have seen to a happy expression.
Tunguska tenses up, realizing his trick has been found out. "Ahh-ha! Well then. Now I'll actually have to put some effort in.
"Shut up!" the dragon snarls. He and Vortigern stand next to the two of you. "Alright. On three. One, two…!"
[1d10+2] the dragon>>685701>>685702>>685708
"Well, if you're trying to hit up the slave auction, I'm afraid it won't happen until tomorrow, once we're out of here," the dog says. "But Splitz'll tell you where it'll take place. Right now he's by the southeast corner of the lake south of here. But be careful. A powerful wind is going to come from the west once all the search-and-rescue teams are back at the ship. And nothing is going to survive what it brings. You know, to cover our tracks."
You run down the path that Flaming spotted, free of the smoke and fire of the earlier stretch of the road. Soon, even LJ and Busta are breathing heavily, exhausted and panting due to the nasty stink of smoke. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L9zQFOJsijw
After about another hour of climbing over broken buildings, piles of trash and many, many corpses, you reach a wide area, where the clumped-together houses finally end. up ahead, you see the northern shore of the smaller, southern lake of the Cozy Vimana. Hundreds of thugs are gathered, many of them unwashed, injured and gritty-looking. They're overseeing the collection of slaves, gathering them in tents, marking them, and treating their injuries. You cannot tell how many slaves, thugs or demons are there, but there are at least 200 around here by your estimation.
"What an efficient operation!" LJ exclaims.
You notice a broken window on the second floor of a nearby poorhouse. The building has been slumped over, across the other nearby houses, which are all tightly packed around one another. It looks like a good way of circumventing the gas. Mocha starts climbing up herself, effortlessly with her eight legs.Roll #1 8 + 4 = 12
/ Roll #2 8 + 2 = 10
Flow makes sure not to get his goo on anyone else as he clasps his hoof on Tunguska's hand, and uses his strength to push.
Vice starts climbing as best as he can, with Trapper right behind him.
V: [1d10]>>"Oi love, I know it's still early…but…can I please ride you, lass? I can't bleedin climb for shite!">"Quit coming up with excuses and climb!"Roll #1 3 + 2 = 5
/ Roll #2 1 = 1
/ Roll #3 1 = 1
Amy looks at the thug with concern. "If you're going to eat someone who's already dead, then I guess it's okay… But, it can get… addictive. I wouldn't do it myself, even if I didn't kill them. I know I wouldn't be able to control myself. So, I think you should do it sparingly. Otherwise, you'll be tempted to kill people to eat them. And, that's just wrong, obviously.">>685717
As Amy trots along, she looks at the slave. "Good," she says with a nod. "We're on the right track. He's gotta be close now!"
Her snout becomes dog-like again, and she begins to sniff out Splitz. [1d10] to find him!Roll #1 10 = 10
>>685716>"No can do. I said I'm here for you, and that means at all times until I see you better."
KP practically recites like a code of honor, following right behind River into the laboratory.>>685712>>685715
Pryce sighs as the two bicker back and forth.>>685717
Pryce stops as they finally gain sight of the masses under Splitz, body feeling strained from trekking across the city again two days in a row. He looks over the numbers, only seeing them as obstacles now that are blocking them from Splitz and from leaving.
He shoots LJ a dirty look as he exclaims and compliments the sight, before he starts to march down to find Splitz.
"Come on, he should be easy to spot.">Navigate through the crowd [1d10]Roll #1 8 = 8
"I'm only fourteen," Flaming shoots back, perhaps the first time she's been in favor of mentioning how 'young' she is.>>685717
The thick smoke building up causes Flaming to hack a little as she pushes through, but she does not let it bother her too much. The rising smoke of the Sleeping Dragon in her journeys into it were just as harsh.
After coming through the broken buildings and many corpses, looking at them sadly as she does so, and looks up ahead at the lake of Cozy Vimana. She looks on at all of the slaves being treated by the thugs, and gives a small glare at Little Journey.
"Don't let them fool you too much, we've seen their operation before. It's nothing like the Climbing Fire's slaves, we treat ours like new clan mates, not commodities. Let's go check closer." She moves on towards the camp, shouting at any thugs nearby, "Hey! Can you tell us where to find Splitz?"
[1d10] For convincing demandsRoll #1 10 = 10
Shei-Sher is flumoxed and yet filled with irritation at Volkama's derisive display. He would share the sentimental attachment he had toward his seal and spell but it would likely only incur more ridicule "Yes.. fuuunny…" His voice cracks with bridled anger. "Please be careful with that Volkama. The secrets contained within will leap gorges in mending the errors of our world."
Shortly after Shei-Sher returns to his scrubbing he finds a voice speaking to him. His is certain where it is from and sighs. He wouldn't want to ignore a debt to be paid. "I know.." Shei-Sher laments.
"I'm sorry," Amy says as her ears go down in response to the sigh.>>685721
"Well-" she begins to say, but stops herself, not wanting to agitate Pryce further.
She cocks her head. "Your clan had slaves?" Amy asks conversationally, without a hint of disapproval in her voice.
Observer attempts to join in with the arm wrestling, seeing if his normal voidling form has the strength to help.
[1d10]Roll #1 4 = 4
The thugs and their guard demons grow tense as you approach, stepping forward to keep you from interacting with the slaves. But then, through each of your methods, you are directed southeast around the perimeter of the lakeshore. There, you see a collection of ships, but they have magitech engines and technology on their undersides, as well as large sets of wheels for ground travel.
In the center of the ship-cluster, you see Banana Splitz's red-and-mahogany ship. Strangely, it isn't guarded. There's nobody on board as far as you can tell, at least not outside.>>685718
Trapper and Vice end up slipping, and in a humorous sequence of falls, manage to hit their heads on every bit of debris possible on the way down, much to Mocha's horror. >Trapper and Vice 0/0>>685720
KP notices that much of the lab's inner workings have been appropriated from their use under Orcus, and now seem to be producing a wide variety of potions. It looks quite a lot like depictions of witches' and wizards' labs from fairy tales, only not nearly as gritty or dark.
Eventually, River reaches a room in the back, and in a drawer, she finds a set of blue vials. KP recognizes this room. It's the room in which Pryce, River and Shei figured out how to derive an addiction antidote from JOY itself. River takes a cluster of ten vials. "They won't need so much anymore. And I don't know for sure if Shei has extra doses. He probably does."
She conjures another dark corridor. "Are you ready to return? Going through these too often may give you nausea.">>685724>>685718
Between the four of you, you manage to move Tunguska's arm down about halfway toward the ground. But, before you can get any further, he lazily moves his arm back up, tossing you all backward. "Ha! Ha! Ha!" he laughs slowly. "Ahhh, still undefeated after so long. Oh, that old dragon couldn't stop me even now."
Tunguska picks up the hollow tree trunk and blows into it. Each of you return your souls to your bodies. He scoots off to the side. "That's the furthest a group of mortals has pushed me. You've earned this for sure. But tell me at least where you're going!">>685722
Volkama smiles. "Oh yes, I will have lots of fun with them. And you will not. Ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha."https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iC6deOAReoM
As you work, a vague idea nibbles at the back of your mind, and the upper center of your vision feels black. Your ears fill with the low churn of deep water. Against your will, you are made to imagine the face of each person in your party, including the NPCs. Then, you see images of Buiwong, Ba'drel, Cer'reg, Crowley, your mother Shei-perd, Hexapod Chorazin, Vizsla, Mudi… everyone whose face and name you know. Finally, you see Amy's face.
"You have three days," the withered voice intones, like an old person with sunken jowls. "For you begged power of God without offering a sacrifice upon the Noble Tabernacle. In three days, this debt shall be collected, unless you pay before then."
For an instant, you feel dozens of smaller arrows sprout from the shaft of Vae Victis, stabbing all throughout your arm like a ball of spikes. But then, the sensation fades, and you realize it was just a hallucination.
Flaming nods, "Uh-huh! Our clan was the strongest of ALL the clans, and sometimes we'd butt heads with them. And sometimes, not all of them would get away from the battle. So we'd take them in as slaves for them to make themselves useful, or to trade back to their original clans."
She scowls, "But we treated slaves right. We never gave them something we couldn't do ourselves, and lots of them even wanted to stay and become Climbing Fire themselves rather than be returned."
"Sounds like making friends to me."
"We are seeking ruins that I wish to research, however the others seem to be more after treasure." Observer says as he shifts back to his feminine pony form.
Flaming nods, "Right. Sometimes with doing a little more work that you don't exactly want to do but there's a reason slaves stuck around."
She stares at Little Journey a little bit, then leans in quiet, "Like, you notice how Little Journey's coat is a LOT thicker than mine is? Natural Climbing Fire buffalo like me don't have that because it'd be way too hot for our plains, but he's originally of the Sinking Rain, who need those coats for the frequent rainfalls. He was totally a slave who took a liking to the better tribe.">>685725
As they're directed through the camp, Flaming makes sure to take a look at all of the slaves they've collected, eying their condition as they're taken in by the Splitz gang. She finally recognizes the tall-tell sign of the tread-bearing ships she saw back in Circadia, and goes running up to the red one, "There it is!" She shouts in jubilation as she begins to scamper up the ramp on board, looking around the sailor-less ship. "Huh, why isn't anyone on it?"
She looks for a door to take her below deck, "Come one, everyone, he has to be on this ship somewhere."
[1d10] Searching for SplitzRoll #1 6 = 6
Pryce pays no mind to the thugs and demons, keeping his eyes focused out for Splitz. As the ship comes into view, Pryce spreads his wings to fly out and land on its deck.
"Splitz! Come up if you're down there, we have some talking to do!"
He shouts down into the ship, assuming he's down there.>>685725
KP looks over the vials and new decor with fascination, wondering what each may do. He follows away from them after River once she pulls out her cures.
He looks over to the corridor, then up to River.>"Sorta…Before we go anywhere, are you alright?"
He asks with concern.>" I saw you crying, and you didn't look like you wanted to come in here."
Amy giggles a little bit. "I feel like I know a secret now! I like learning about cultures!"
She snickers, "Yeah, and I think it musta helped too. I think those Sinking Rain wethoofs are like their coats: big and soft. But did you see Little Journey smash his way through that magma dog earlier? And I never heard any one swear like him either. I thought he was kind of a big jerk at first, partly for being a fake Climbing Fire and partly for worshiping Buiwong," she practically spits out the name, "But he's nicer than I thought."
Shei-Sher pauses for a moment as he scrubs, utterly soberly "I am in such deep shit."
"I want to bargain." He quickly whispers "I will give you all the demons of Huoli, returned in a month's time to Tartarus. Should I fail, I give you mine and the lives of every goat saved by my hoof. They are rightfully mine by love under law."
Shei-Sher appears to be staring at the floor from Volkama's perspective. Without turning back to him, he asks "Volkama, seeing how we are friends again. Would you mind killing every single spider on this ship. In return I'll cook your favorite meal tonight, and I promise a special surprise to be revealed at later notice that you will find absolutely delectable."
"If he worships Buiwong, doesn't that kinda make him MORE like a Climbing Fire?" Amy contemplates.
Flaming growls, turning into a snap, "Not anymore! After what that bug did to the world I don't respect any Climbing Fire who still thinks he's worthy of worship. We lost our home because that idiotic old god broke the Firmament without even a plan as to what to do when all the demons came rolling through!"
Flow huffs as he keels over, his arm having fell off from straining it.
"I'm here on a hunt, and coincidentally, paired up with these guys."
>>685733>I forgot a month is 20 days
change that to "in 30 days time"
Busta pauses when you start to go below-deck. "I'll stick around up here, and if someone starts coming toward the ship, I'll give a shout! It could be Count Imaal's assassins in disguise."
Like with the deck, the first below-deck floor (B1F, for short) is deserted. Most of the rooms are locked, but the ones that aren't locked are full of paperwork, ledgers, lists of checks, scrolls, etc. As you get to the end of the hall, you find a very ornate door installed. It must lead to Splitz's room. But, it is locked. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lsoLYWTzqSY
If you choose to look through the keyhole, you see Splitz fast asleep in a rocking chair, without his chitinous armor. There is a red filly asleep on his stomach, and on the bed next to the chair, there is a green mare, also asleep.>>685730
"I'll say my piece on the ship," River grunts. "Shei needs to hear it.">>685733
The voice from Vae Victis pauses. "I am sorry. Since when were you under the impression you could negotiate with Our God, AFTER the deal? You probably should have hammered out these details with Him when you asked for power."
"I said we CAN be friends again. Not that we are. At some point, perhaps, but now, no. Besides, your last 'surprise' was that you are a bag bitch for chemical weapons. I am not interested in seeing another surprise, and I am not your exterminator. But, I could be," Volkama says defiantly, before walking off. You notice Zjetya, Onion and Box giving you odd glares.>>685730>>685733
KP and River return to the ship. River grabs Shei and sets him outside the bathroom, then enters by herself and locks the door.>>685737>>685728
"Very good!" Tunguska says. "I remember the days of my hunts. A time long ago, I'm afraid. Good hunting. May the Treibheanna's winds be at your back."
Tunguska picks up the cart and sets you on the other side of the river, and after saying goodbye, you are off.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U3zle1ZfxQc
After many more hours of travel north made rapid by the Rumblers, the special bounty poster of Voir Dire, which Hope gave to Flow, begins to glow orange, indicating a dangerous bounty. But, a small transparent arrow alights over the poster, pointing north-northeast.
"Do these usually do that?" the dragon asks with wonder. They don't.
Soon, you reach the boundary of a great, deep evergreen forest. The terrain is steep and rocky, and the Rumblers are reluctant to continue. The arrow is now pointing due northeast. Vortigern looks to the two of you expectantly.
Amy looks through the keyhole and sees the filly. She knows what she is looking at. "Disgusting…" she mutters to herself.
She knocks on the door loudly. "Sundae!" she shouts. "We need to talk!"
[1d10] to wake him upRoll #1 3 = 3
Pryce peers through the keyhole, astonished that Splitz can sleep so peacefully while he raids a fallen city for more slaves and peons. He takes a step back from the door, horn glowing as he tries to bust open the lock on the door to enter.>Telekinesis: Break Lock [1d10]
"Splitz, wake up!">>685739>"Ok."
KP says, nodding as he follows River back through the corridor.>>685739
KP steps out of the corridor, wobbling a little bit.>"Whoa, you weren't kidding when you said it can make you queezie."
As River pulls Shei aside, KP goes to follow but stops as the door is shut and locked. He looks up with a pout and feeling insulted, knocking on the door.>"Heeey, what's the deal?"
He huffs.Roll #1 2 = 2
Observer peers about, keeping an eye out for intriguing details in the area. "This bounty you're after… Do you suppose he resides in the ruins we seek?" She asks Flow.
Shei-Sher whispers angrily at the arrow "I am Shei-Sher, Child of Sabuul, Shepherd sent from Sh'harel, Spider of Bui-Wong, and the only personal student of The Great Beast Aliester Crow-ley! I know exactly where I lie! And what my conditions are to bargain! You will tell your Master my name and my proposal or he shall only have my soul in Tartarus throttling you for all eternity!"
Shei-Sher puts away the sponge and runs over to Volkama, he whisper in his ear. "Do this for me and I will hand over to you the opportunity to use my godmother's spell for control over me for an entire 30 days. The cause will be completely justified among our company and you will even have a chance to appear heroic when doing so."Roll #1 4 = 4
Flaming peers through the keyhole, but before her eyes see anything her nostrils flare, the buffalo quickly backing away from the door as she snorts, "Ugh! I smell… yeck. Yeah, he's doing something GROSS in there, my nose can smell it."
Seeing as how Amy and Pryce are already knocking on the door, Flaming smiles, and tries to add her voice to the pack. She takes a deep breath
"SPLIIIIITZ! WAKE! UP!!!!!!!"
[1d10] VolumeRoll #1 10 = 10
[1d10+3]Roll #1 10 + 3 = 13
>>685744>Flaming peers through the keyhole, but before her eyes see anything her nostrils flare…..
requesting this line be ignored, just keep the line after of her shouting
"Alrighty then, looks like we have a challenge on our hands…">>685742
"One can only hope!"
He hops off of the cart
"O, dear God…" the old voice says. "Boys, we've got another one."
The voice ends.
Volkama laughs for a few good minutes. "Nothing could ever tempt me to sink to your level of weakness that I would need or even want your wretched power. How can it even compete with mine? Besides. It's no longer yours to offer, isn't it? It belongs to the angel now.">>685741>>685743
River exits the bathroom after about ten minutes. "Nothing, not anymore. My addiction has been cured. Shall we have lunch?">>685741>>685740>>685744
You hear some confused grunts and a few crashing sounds. "Ow…" the filly says.
"You okay, Sundae?" Splitz asks.
"Not really? Can you just go see who's there?"
Splitz unlocks the door and peeks at you, with the mare and the filly peering at you from behind his leg. The filly looks to be maybe seven years old at most, while the mare, like Splitz, is in her forty's or so. "I'm sorry, but the auction won't be until tomorrow. You can see yourselves out, now."
Splitz doesn't seem to recognize you.>>685747>>685745
The Rumblers refuse to continue. So, the dragon curls around them and the cart for a few moments. Then, an igloo of paper forms around them. It takes on a green shade, blending in partially with the foliage. The rumblers settle down and relax. "They shall be safe here for now," the dragon explains. "Now, onward."
As you proceed, the ground is rough and uneven, though the earth that you walk on is smooth. In places, parts of the ground rise up in long, thin cords, like a vein rising up beneath the skin of your arm. There are protrusions like this on the trees and on the plants as well. As you pass by a very large tree with the width of a lighthouse, you see one of these protrusions on the tree start to move. It rises up, and its head splits into flaps, becoming a cobra-like shape. It steadily observes you, unnerving Vortigern and the dragon.
Flow squints and checks the bounty to see where Voir Dire is. He pauses his walking as the cobra-branch appears, and takes a good look at it.
"Whatdya see, Observer? Any info on that thing? My eyes ain't as good as they used to be."
After Flaming shouts down the door, she looks pleased as punch with herself as she hear's the crashing sound, but her ears raise up at the sounds of what appears to be a young voice.
When the door opens, she is surprised to see the mare and filly among them, staring back and forth between them: she didn't remember if Spitshine had mentioned having a sister. As Splitz initially seems to dismiss them, she grumbles, pushing towards the front of the door. She gives the filly a little wave of her hoof, then turns to Splitz.
"We're not here for the auction, Splitz. We're here to ask you to leave this city alone." She turns her head, "Don't you remember us?"
Observer peers back at the cobra-like being, scanning it while minimizing it slightly.
[1d10+1]Roll #1 5 + 1 = 6
KP tilts his head at the sudden turn.>"You sure?"
He eyes her over, giving her an examining glare. It only lasts for a few seconds before he hops back up into a smile.>"Sure, I could use a snack about now."
He says happily, taking up the offer.>>685748
"We're not here to talk about the auction. The demon lords in this place are out for your head and if you don't leave now you won't be around to have
Pryce warns in a stern tone, ignoring the filly and mare.
"Yeah, sorry, we've been sent to tell you to stop taking slaves and to let go the ones you've taken from this city. I don't really wanna hear about whatever justification you have. It doesn't matter what either of us wants. We're trying to save your life. Cause, if you don't do what we ask, someone else is gonna kill you."
>Prayer of Enlightenment for Compassion>Mantra of Equality to get him to listen to reason [1d10+2] with a DC-3Roll #1 7 + 2 = 9
Shei-Sher feels the walls closing in on him, the stress wraps over his mind and feels as though it will collapse as it shrinks upon him, but it only shrinks and shrinks reminding him of the position he is in. Shei-Sher slaps his face with a hoof, not meaning to fly off the handle like that but this stress and agitation from withdrawal is killing him. LITERALLY!
Shei-Sher relaxes off his tippy toes and tells Volkama soberly "I have my notes and you have seen me use it well enough times to grab the concept, but If that is how you feel, so may it be.">>685748>>685739>Didn't see River's interaction with Shei
Shei-Sher stands beside the Bathroom exit and speaks with River "Excuse me RiverSpring, an apology and explanation is in order. " Shei-Sher takes Miracle's orb out from his bag and presents it "This is an Angel's core, the short version is I had projected myself into it to learn something that could revert ponies who transformed into either angel or demon back to their natural state. I burned a saucer of JOY in an effort to counteract the angel's mind controlling capabilities. However my efforts were in vane, I was overwhelmed, and a partition of my data had been confiscated." Shei-Sher gestures to his body, explaining his reversion into youth. "The Joy contained within the bathroom was completely under control, no one was meant to be hurt by this, except for me. I am truly, utterly sorry." Shei iterates the apology slowly, and with all due sincerity. "I promise I only had the interests of the group at heart. So may I please have the antidote before I perish?"
In a moment after Shei-Sher's interaction with River Shei-Sher ambles over to Kid Pryce.
"Excuse me, you seem to know me. Would you care to speak with me outside for a moment."
KP looks from Shei to the kitchen and back.>"But lunch…"
Is his answer.
"Hmm? Oh, oh, don't tell me!" Splitz pauses, tapping his head. "Yes, you're the ones from Circadia. You're a both bit more sober than the last time I saw you," he says to Pryce and Amy, in reference to the former's bloodmoon madness and Amy's partial demon transformation. "So, someone's after me. Wow, tell me something I don't know." Splitz reaches into a nearby chest and draws out a peculiar onyx padlock, like one from a dungeon. "So, who is it this time? A rival? A freedom fighter? A leader, perhaps? C'mon, I deserve to know. Otherwise my daughter here might be in danger, right?">>685751>>685749
Observer notes that this creature is not a distinct monster, but rather a part of a deep network of a nameless, sleeping being that lives inside this whole area. This cobra can be likened to a nerve, or perhaps more accurately, a finger. The cobra circles around your group slowly, sticking out a tongue much like a real snake. Then, it lays back down on the tree, apparently uninterested in you.>>685754>>685752
"And HOW do you know ANY of that?" River says to Shei. Her voice is completely calm and even. Happy, even. "And why would you bring an angel onboard this ship if it's not dead? Why would you try to face it alone? So, first, you keep a sample of the world's most deadly biochemical weapon right under my nose, which I had been forced to brew after spending my ENTIRE LIFE trying to heal people. Second, you don't tell us that you kept it despite seeing firsthand all the evil that it's wrought and the horrible ways in which the afflicted die. Third, you decide it would be a good idea to SMOKE it, by yourself, in the bathroom, where it could have easily spread to any of us the moment the door opened? Are you sure you haven't been possessed by Orcus? And you have the gall to even stand in front of me right now and admit to all of it.
Her voice starts to warble. "Well, it doesn't matter much now. I don't have the patience or mental and emotional fortitude required to stage an intervention for someone as unhinged as you have demonstrated yourself to be. In other words, you can fucking walk to Fantasia if you want an antidote. Goodbye, Shei. You are already dead."
"Please?" Shei-Sher asks with a look of desperation.
KP rolls his head back in thought.>"I don't knooow…"
His head drops back down to look at Shei.>"Why don't you come with, you look like you need to eat anyways."
Shei-Sher gets the message "I understand"
and follows Kid Pryce to the dinning table
Last time on HQ (for these two)…https://arch.b4k.co/mlp/thread/30311730/#30313266
Amy and Flaming decided they needed to get stronger quick before going into Tartarus with Mudi. Volkama suggested they try the Smoldering Grove, a tournament house that offered prizes for fighters who did well enough in the arenas. To this end they entered a 2v2 match with a pair of yokai. The condition for winning was that they had to force the other team to use their strongest move, and that they could not kill them.
—>Amy just now obtained Homing Magic from PoE
Zjetya and Volkama go over to 10-C. "Good luck, you two!" Volkama adds.
The battle arena is a fairly clean, square stone room, well lit, with barrels of weapons and magic runes in every corner. Up above, the roof is made of a transparent material, allowing demon onlookers to observe the battles.
Your opponents are a pair of youkai. They appear to be foreigners, chatting in a strange tongue. The first is a large black bear with a freakishly big set of eyes, wearing a loose robe, with a long scroll in his hand. The second is a cyclops tengu with a bag full of souvenirs over his shoulder and some traditional Mariposan garb. He's got a stick with a lantern on the end as well.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZPsU-ZMC6SA
As a loud bell clangs, the two greet you in their foreign language and bow. Then, they spring into action.
The panda starts to chant. [1d10+1: 9 + 1 = 10] Mind Reader vs Amy
The tengu sparks up his lantern's fire. [1d10+1: 10 + 1 = 11] Homing Missiles: Fire
Amy's color drains toward her face as her tattoos glow. She opens her mouth wide and balls of white energy come out.
[1d10+1] for Homing MissileRoll #1 2 + 1 = 3
As Amy and Flaming head into their personal arena for their match, she stares down at the two odd youkai, ears flattening in bewilderment at their appearance. "What a weird looking pair… the bear could almost pass for normal but what's with the nose and the eye on the other?"
As they bow, Flaming quickly bows her own head as well, not wanting to be outdone for etiquette, and springs into action as she charges at the bear. "Haaaaaaaaa!">Charge: Passive; At the beginning of combat declare a charge against one enemy. You get a +2 bonus on that target at the cost of increasing critical failure range by 1
[1d10+2] She moves to slam her fore-hooves with a regular attackRoll #1 10 + 2 = 12
The feeling of buzzing in your brain disrupts your concentration. The panda's eyes widen shortly thereafter, and exclaims in surprise in his foreign tongue.
Shadows start to gather in the panda's claws. [1d10+1] A Word in Your Ear>>686837
But, you quickly knock over the panda. He rolls back up and shoves you off, just as the tengu floats overhead with his lantern.
[1d10+1] Fire Homing Missiles vs FlamingRoll #1 6 + 1 = 7
/ Roll #2 4 + 1 = 5
/ Roll #3 2 + 1 = 3
/ Roll #4 7 + 1 = 8
Flaming grunts as her hooves connect with the pand and knock him over, rebounding as she moves around to the side to flank him. "Amy! I got the big one, you take long-nose!" She shouts as she bounces up onto the panda's back and tries throw him down to the ground
[1d10+2] Regular attackRoll #1 2 + 2 = 4
Amy gives the Panda an insulted look. "Hey!" she shouts. "My head isn't THAT messed up! If you can't appreciate it, get out!"
She grunts as she uses her rarely used mental muscles to force him out. [1d10]Roll #1 3 = 3
The panda rolls to the side, throwing you off his back, right into one of the tengu's fireballs, after which you land on your side near the wall.>Flaming 3/7
The tengu flings another orb your way. [1d10+1]>>686840
As the shadow spreads from the panda's claws to your head, Ego takes control, thrashing and gnashing as she attempts to stave off his influence.>You have another (final) chance at fighting off the panda's spellRoll #1 1 + 1 = 2
Amy laughs through her struggle. "I don't think you want to do that."
[1d10] to regain control of her mindRoll #1 7 = 7
Flaming grunts as she's tossed by the Panda to the far wall, wincing as she feels the fire-ball's sting shortly after, "Graah!"
She shakes off the pain, and tries to stand. "Good, they gave me a strong one. Usually I'm told NOT to go near bears but I'll make an exception this time."
[1d10] Standing upRoll #1 2 = 2
Focusing together with Ego, you bite straight through the shadows surrounding your head, breaking them off and severing the panda's attempt at control. Seeing this, he changes tactics and attempts to slice you with his claws.
You manage to buck the tengu's fireball back at him and land a hit, but the effort burns you again and disrupts your chances of getting up.
The tengu charges another spell with his lantern…
[1d10+2] Energy Orb vs Amy and FlamingRoll #1 2 + 1 = 3
/ Roll #2 1 + 2 = 3
Flaming gasps as the on-coming fireball from the tengu, and quickly bucks her hooves back at it to send it flying back, "No THANKS, you keep it!"
[1d10] As she's given a moment to breath, she looks at the charging fire-spell and tries to move out of the wayRoll #1 10 = 10
"Ha! Take that!" Amy gloats. "But, if you want me to be a demon, I'll play along."
>Mystic Animal Totem
Amy changes her form into that of a white wolf. She howls and a portal appears.
>Animal Mastery to summon a Nail Beast [1d10+2]Roll #1 9 + 2 = 11
You get back up.>>686847>>686846
Amy summons a nail beast, interrupting the panda's charge as he leaps back from the newly-formed creature.
Some cracks in the tengu's lantern begin to glow, and his charged spell erupts and burns both him and the panda. The two are still in the fight however.
The panda begins to chant, and clouds of light surround him and the tengu. [1d10+2] Healing bonds
The tengu tosses aside the broken lantern and conjures fire in his palms. [1d10+2] Storm BoltRoll #1 8 + 2 = 10
/ Roll #2 7 + 2 = 9
While the crack breaks in the lantern and the spell incinerates both of them, Flaming smiles and takes the moment to re-bound back to her feat as Amy shapeshifts into that of a wolf. "Alright, while they're distracted…" she says to herself as she focuses a prayer and her horns glow white…>Prayer for Salvation: Automatic; Recharge 2; The target's next recovery from Helplessness will be an Automatic Instant action, and the target will get +1 to all future attempts to get up until the end of combat.>Aiming on myself
>>686848>>686849>turn 2 of 4 of wolfness
"The panda heals. Get him first," Amy says, analyzing the situation in an uncharacteristic calmness.
The nail beast shoots at the panda. >Passive; The Nail Beast’s attacks succeed on DC4+ and hits twice per attack.
Amy tosses a potion to Flaming. [1d10+3]Roll #1 8 = 8
/ Roll #2 2 + 3 = 5
Merryflower Root, plz. [1d3]Roll #1 2 = 2
You bolster yourself just before the tengu's fireball hits and singes you.>Flaming 5/6
But instead of dissipating, these flames encircle you and start to turn greenish purple. [1d10+2] Polymorph>>686850
The panda takes the blow head-on, but appears to be on his last legs now. Shadows gather around your head again… [1d10+1] A Word in Your Ear
You decide to toss away the potion at the last second. Probably for the best.Roll #1 8 + 2 = 10
/ Roll #2 4 + 1 = 5
"Okay, that's enough of that!" Amy says as her tatoos light up again.
>Homing Missiles charging [1d10+1]
>Nail Beast nails the panda [1d10]Roll #1 2 + 1 = 3
/ Roll #2 6 = 6
As the flaming fireball slams into her, Flaming winces and dives out of the way as her horns stop glowing, racing along the edge of the arena as she moves to target the Panda once more as the nail beast shoots at it. "Alright, I'm going for it!" She notices the flames glowing greenish purple, and attempts to move past it as she slams back into the Panda with her fore-hooves, "Hit me with all the flames you want, won't slow me down!"
[1d10+2] Physical Attack
[1d10+2] Mantra of Recovery: Recharge 2 after effect ends; Instant; Cannot be used at full Hits; On use, select an enemy. Every turn, you drain two Hits from that target. This effect ends when you go helpless, or after 3 turns pass, whichever comes first.>Both on the PandaRoll #1 9 + 2 = 11
/ Roll #2 7 + 2 = 9
The panda tries to tank both of the hits, but in doing so, gets knocked back against the doorway with a dull thud, bleeding slightly from his injuries. As he crawls back up, he puts up the palms of his paws, creating a sign of surrender. He then bows to you.
[1d10+3] Prayer of Healing
The green-purple flames engulf Flaming, leaving her transformed into a small rabbit with horns and buffalo fluff on her head.
The tengu, seeing that his companion has surrendered, meekly backs away for a moment, but pauses with resolve, and charges up a final attack of his own. [1d10+3] Earthen GraspRoll #1 9 + 3 = 12
/ Roll #2 3 + 3 = 6
Amy grins as she sees the Panda surrender, despite yet another failed attack. "I CAN do this!" she says loudly as her fades back to pony form.
>Homing Missiles once more with gusto! [1d10+1]
>Nail Beast nails the tengu [1d10]Roll #1 5 + 1 = 6
/ Roll #2 3 = 3
With the Panda shoved off back to the edge of the arena, Flaming huffs and looks at the bear before he surrenders, bowing to them. Flaming smiles, bowing herself, "You put up a great fight, sir."
However, as the green flames circle around her and transform her into a jackalo (jack rabbit + buffalo), Flaming lets out a small wail as she's transformed. "AAAAAAAAAAH!"
When she looks down at herself, her small, rabbit like eyes open wide with shock, and she looks down at herself as she sees the form she's become. "W-wha… what?! WHAT!" She shouts in a high-pitched voice as she stares bloody murder at the tengu, charging at him with her paws swiping at his long nose. "CHANGE ME BACK CHANGE ME BACK CHANGE ME BAACK!""
>Effect: Activating Wild Hunt no longer gives a free Automatic action, but instead knocks back all nearby enemies and applies a debuff of -1 to all their rolls for 5 turns (or until debuff is broken). The debuff does not stack and wears off if this relic is removed.
[1d10+2] Physical attackRoll #1 5 + 2 = 7
Amy does a double take. It takes her a moment to register that the rabbit is Flaming. She begins having a giggle fit.
"But you're soooooo cuuuuuute!" Amy says, looking at Flaming with big, adoring eyes. "Can I pet you?"
Flaming stares up at the large, imposing white wolf that Amy has taken, and stomps her rabbit-foot on the tile of the arena multiple times in quick succession. "No you can not! I am not some dumb cute little bunny, I am a WARRIOR! This is the worst!"
Amy is unable to contain her giggles and they come out in a single large adoring squee at Flaming tapping her foot. "I can't help it!" she says as she rubs Flaming behind the ears.
Amy charges a single orb. At least it has gusto.
The tengu floats around the nail beast's attack, but Flaming's attack pins him against the wall. As vines burst up from the floor of the arena, they merely bop the nail beast a few times on the head.>Nail Beast 3/4
You hear a wooden whistling sound, and a ghostly mare with a royal scribe look about her floats into the room through the doors that the yokai entered through. "By my readings, those were your strongest attacks, no?" She then repeats the question in the language the yokai spoke.
The yokai nod, and so does the ghost. She says another sentence in that language, then the two yokai bow to you and exit. "Well, those two wouldn't have had much a chance anyway. Here you go," she says, and floats over a set of three golden tokens with her magic. "You've earned these. You can redeem them at the altar that's down the hall, to the right, third room on the left."
"Oooooh," Amy says with fascination as the ghost floats into the ring. Amy pokes the ghost repeatedly curiously as the ghost speaks with the yokai, though her hoof likely just goes right through.
When the ghost turns to talk to her, she suddenly stands upright and stiff as if she's a solider standing at attention. "Oh. We won!? Aaaawesome!" she says with a hoof pump. "Thank you."
She takes the coins and bounces happily out of the arena to turn the coins in. >>686868
"That wasn't so bad," Amy says to the (possibly) still rabbit Flaming.
Flaming lets out a few huffs as she lets up on her adorable assault on the tengu, stopping only once she hears the whistle blowing. The rabbit stops and turns towards the ghostly looking mare as she descends. "We… we won?"
Flaming relaxes, letting out a huff, "We won!" She looks over at the three golden tokens, her mouth forming an 'oooh' sound as she watches them float over. "Thank you!" She does not give the Tengu the same bow of honor she offered the bear, and then turns up at Amy as she feels her ears getting rubbed>>686870
Flaming's whiskers twitch, and she shivers at Amy petting her. "You can never. EVER. Tell Pryce or anyone else." She crosses her arms, making a very pouty face. "Why didn't YOU turn into a stupid bunny, you like cute stuff… HEY!"
Before she bounces out of the arena with Amy (literally bouncing) she shouts at the Tengu, "How long is this supposed to last for?!"
Amy giggles as she picks Flaming up and embraces her lightly. "Your secret is safe with me."
She then proceeds to put Flaming on her head.
Flaming grunts as she's lightly hugged, still looking rather grumpy for a rabbit as she wiggles in Amy's grasp. "T-thanks. Why a BUNNY, couldn't it have at least been something cool like, a lizard or something?"
She sits down on top of Amy's head, settling down and scratching at her head as she sees her horns. "Huh. At least I got to keep THOSE, that's good. Don't know how much of a buffalo I would be without my horns." She looks down at Amy from atop her head, "Can't wait to see what they have here, the other arena in the first Vimana we landed in had really neat stuff."
"They had stuff?" Amy asks, genuinely surprised.
The tengu shrugs and says something that sounds like a half-assed apology, though you cannot understand his words.>>686874>>686876
As you hop along, Volkama and Zjetya shortly come out of their room. Volkama's rats sit on his shoulder, clutching the three tokens. "Hardly much of a challenge, that."
"If I had to guess, I'd suspect that most of the strongest demons in the city-state have already vacated the premises and are out fighting or looting in the city proper," Zjetya says. "Probably, only those who don't care or are too weak to survive out there are gonna be around here."
"Easier for us then!" Volkama declares.
As you wander the fiercely-decorated stone halls, it strikes you that most of the building's occupants aren't combatants, but rather those who have come here seeking shelter or medical attention. There's evidence that Mocha has been here already, as you see that many of them are wearing clothing similar to the kind that she was wearing and passing around around the Windhill, as well as eating the kind of pastries and dried fruits you remember seeing in the cabin.
The token altar is a large circular room with a dozen grisly-looking altars set up in a circle, taking the shape of a guardian beast, a kind of dragon with eagle-like features, holding a scale in its taloned hands. As you approach one altar, you see a small inscription at the bottom of the altar, listing what you may get for offering tokens.
[Obviously the below is not what the altar literally
says, this is just the short version for clarity]>3 tokens - a magical trinket; unlikely to have much effect in combat unless used very creatively>9 tokens - a magical relic with a minor effect (note that you can only equip 1 relic; switching them takes 2 rounds of combat)>15 tokens - a magical item, relic or weapon with a significant effect>Note that although you cannot specify what you want the reward to exactly be, you can request it to have a particular nature, theme or focus, ie diplomacy, defence, conjuration of items, wilderness survival, etc.
"Hmmmm," Amy grumbles, a little disappointed. "We need more tokens. I at least want a relic. But, I also don't want to hog all the tokens."
"Wanna go again?" Amy asks as she looks up at Flaming on her head.
Shorthorns nods, "Yeah, even had some stuff I recognize from Climbing Fire! I don't know how they got their demon mitts on it but I thought that was cool to see at least.">>686886
Flaming leers at the tengu and gives a few stomps of her rabbit-like feet, turning around without another word and leaving him. "Whatever. As long as it's not permanent.">>686886
As they meet up with Volkama and Zjetya again outside of their room, Flaming gasps and ducks behind Amy's mane to get some cover to avoid being seen, but nonetheless voices out her comments, "Uh, yeah, ours were no big deal either. I just got… shrunk, temporarily but, otherwise we're just fine. Glad that was so easy!"
As they wander up to the alter, Flaming looks around at the many refugees here, smiling as she recognizes Mocha's delicious foods. "Woah. She sure has been busy…" When she looks up at the menu, she taps at her chin,>>686886>>686888
"If we could both get 15, that should REALLY let us get some power that we'll need to take on Tartarus. I'd say lets go on for another one!" She hops enthusiastically.
"Hmm…" Zjetya looks around at the refugees. "Well, this might seem a little lame to a big, brave bunny warrior like yourself, but why don't we see if any of them out there have tokens they're willing to trade for? Could be quicker and easier than just fighting.">>686888>>686886
"Very well, I'm enjoying myself. Much better than being ordered around by Shei in that ship, the little junkie," Volkama says, petting his rats protectively. Flaming catches the rats having a giggle at her expense.
The four of you hop back to the main reception hall and express your desire to fight again to the overseer-demon. "Hee-ho! Go down to 15-D now. It's a simpler match in this room. Knock your opponent to their knees three times and you win."
You head down to 15-D and enter a stone, flame-lit dungeon room much like the one you were in for your previous match. On the other end enter an armored centipede and a small green goblin clothed in ritzy red garb on its back. The centipede is as big as an SUV, and about its length as well.
The ghostly mare peeks her head in. "Have fun, and begin!"
The centipede just sort of stands there menacingly.>Protect on Goblin, Auto Instant>Guardian [1d10+2]
Meanwhile, the goblin points his fingertips at you, and they crackle with dark magic. >Transfix vs Amy [1d10+3]Roll #1 10 + 2 = 12
/ Roll #2 7 + 3 = 10
Flaming's long, bunny ears fall down as she's teased by Zjetya, grumbling, "Grrrrm…. PLEASE don't tell anyone else on the ship. Or I'll throw you off of it." She looks at the rats laughing at her next and shouts, "And I'm STILL bigger than you punks so watch it!"
She looks around at the refugees, and nods. "I see…. that's actually not a bad idea. Let's ask around after our next match.">>686891
After healing and thankfully returning to her restore Buffalo form, practically skipping in joy at being back to normal, Flaming goes into the arena and looks on at the huge, armored centipeed and the goblin on its back. "We have to knock THAT thing down to its knees…?! Alright… here it goes!"
[1d10+5] >Charge + All or Nothing
Aimed at the centipede to try and knock it over, "Let's go Amy!"Roll #1 3 + 5 = 8
"What would we trade them for their tokens though?" Amy asks Zjetya before going to the next match.
"That's a big bug…" Amy says, intimidated as she looks up at the scary creature. "That's also a lot of knees." She smiles.
Her tattoos flash as her entire body blasts at both of her opponents.
>Wrath [1d10+3]Roll #1 5 + 3 = 8
"That just makes it easier, right? We only need to make it go to one set of knees!"
The centipede stands resilient against your attacks, and lazily throws itself against Flaming's head with a charge of its own. [1d10+4] Slam
The goblin cowers from Amy's flame, allowing the centipede to take the brunt of the attacks. Blue and purple lightning jump from his fingertips, paralyzing Amy and causing her to stumble over, helpless.
>Amy 0/4 (1/3 knockdowns)
Cackling cruelly, the goblin then turns his wicked gaze on Flaming, as swirls of sickly red energy engulf his other hand. [1d10+3] LifestreamRoll #1 6 + 4 = 10
/ Roll #2 1 + 3 = 4
"Okay, that's not fair!" Amy objects angrily as she struggles to her feet. [1d10]Roll #1 6 = 6
Flaming grunts as her head slams into it but to no avail, gasping out a bit, "Woah, this thing is STRONG. Going to need to put a little more muscle into it…"
As sickly red energy gathers in the palm of the goblin, Flaming counters with focusing on her own white energy, praying for her ability to withstand his attacks as she stands her ground>Prayer of Salvation on myself
Chortling and snorting, the goblin kicks at the air with wild glee and mirth at your anger.
You get back up.>>686901
Your white energy blocks the goblin's dark magic and even sets off a reverse reaction, causing it to backfire awfully on the goblin. Snorting in rage, he twirls his fingers and tries to disable your protective field with a storm of black lightning.
The centipede pushes you back with his headbutt, and tries to squish you against the wall next. [1d10+4]>Flaming 3/7Roll #1 5 + 2 = 7
/ Roll #2 9 + 4 = 13
Flaming smirks as the white magic of her prayers counter set the goblin's dark magic, ready to slam into him next before she's caught off guard by the centipede that slams her away.
Before she is squished against the wall, she looks up at the incoming centipede's head, "You want to bash heads? Be my guest!" and slams her head into it
[1d10+2] Mantra of Recovery on the centipede
[1d10+5] All or Nothing headbuttRoll #1 7 + 2 = 9
/ Roll #2 3 + 5 = 8
"You won't be laughing long…" She mutters angrily.
>[1d10+1] to Homing MissilesRoll #1 5 + 1 = 6
You charge one missile.>>686904
The goblin's magic destroys your bolstering white magic, but as he's busy with that, you set another spell on the centipede, healing you just before he can squish you against the wall.
>Flaming 2/6 (went helpless from the hit but healed by Mantra)>Flaming at 1/3 knockdowns>>686904>>686905
The centipede slumps down with a loud snort, apparently quite exhausted and not quite ready to bother with all this battling.>Centipede at 1/3 knockdowns
The goblin looks up in a panic, realizing his situation. He slings more black lightning at Flaming to keep her away from him.
[1d10+2] DeathblowRoll #1 1 + 2 = 3
Amy smiles. "Take this!" she shouts as her magic missile and and another wrath are launched from her body.
>[1d10+1] to launch the magic missile at the goblin>[1d10+3] for wrath to bothRoll #1 1 + 1 = 2
/ Roll #2 5 + 3 = 8
[1d10] First rolling for Huge to see if I go helplessRoll #1 5 = 5
Flaming grunts as she's pounded back into the wall, the healing magic of her horns healing her somewhat as she shakes off the injury, looking at the centipede with a smirk as she sees it has fallen down as well. "H-hehe…. see? Told ya. Don't butt horns with a Climbing Fire." She turns to look at the goblin, dodging his lightning as she runs towards him with her horns thrusted out. "That's one down…!"
[1d10+3] All or NothingRoll #1 3 + 3 = 6
The goblin launches a counter-spell, shredding through your missile with a pillar of lighting to shock you.>Amy 2/4
Your wrath singes both combatants, but the centipede doesn't seem to care all that much as it rears back up, the goblin furious and red in the face.>>686912
You knock the smug goblin off his high centipede, causing him to dangle over the side with one foot still caught in the saddle. The centipede swings its weight around, trying to smash at you.
>Goblin 1/3 knockdownsRoll #1 8 + 4 = 12
"You can't knock me down that easily!" Amy says with a grin.
She whips out a potion and drinks it. [1d10+3]Roll #1 7 + 3 = 10
As the Centipede's tail threatens to smash into her once again, Flaming bucks off of the saddle from where she hit the goblin rider, and tries to counter slam into the tail with her head once more
[1d10+5] All or Nothing on centipedeRoll #1 10 + 5 = 15
You heal yourself to 7/5>>686916
You clash several times with the big monster, and although it ultimately knocks you back onto your ass and leaves you with a splitting headache, you see that parts of its armor are beginning to break off.
>Flaming 0/5>Flaming at 2/3 knockdowns
Meanwhile, the goblin regains his senses and climbs back aboard his mount, seething, yet grinning all the same. He tries his sickly red magic on Amy this time.
[1d10+3] LifestreamRoll #1 8 + 3 = 11
>>686918>>686918>Prayer for Salvation activates
Flaming grunts each time her head classes with the mighty tail of the centipede, "Grrr… you're… a tough one, aren't you!" She shouts before her skull finally gives in, screaming as she's knocked tot he other side of the arena on her ass as she shakes her head free of the pain, a small white glow around her body lifting her up and giving her quickened resolve.
She stares up at the Goblin as he charges something meant for Amy, leaping up back towards the centipede and running along its length as she tries to knock him off balance before he fires it
[1d10+3] All or NothingRoll #1 10 + 3 = 13
Amy sees Flaming go down a second time and becomes concerned. "Time to kick it up a notch!" she says, starting to enjoy herself.
>Mystic Animal Totem
She barks at them with white flames. >[1d10+4] for WrathRoll #1 3 + 4 = 7
You get back up again.>>686923
You cook your foes with white flames, but feel your strength leaving you as the goblin's red magic envelops your body. The goblin noticeably grows taller as he drains energy.
The centipede stands around, as if it's lost its train of thought. [Protect, automatic]
Meanwhile, the goblin launches a wave of dark energy at Flaming. [1d10+2] Word of PowerRoll #1 2 + 2 = 4
As Flaming stands up, she bends her knees and shakes off her head. "That's two… I only get one more chance." She looks up and sees the goblin firing down at her, and then shouts to Amy, "AMY! We have to team up! Put everything you have into the centipede, and THEN the goblin! We'll take them out 2 on 1 each!" He horns begin to glow a vibrant, striking white
Commandment of Harmony: Once per combat; Automatic; For 3 turns, you and all allies may ignore all Recharge periods, and the DC for all rolls is reduced by 2.
Amy does not falter and merely barks again.
>Wrath [1d10+4]Roll #1 3 + 4 = 7
Amy's white flames protect her from attack, forcing the goblin to steer his centipede around the ring to chase after Flaming again with a shrill, cruel cackle.
[1d10+4] ShatterRoll #1 6 + 3 = 9
/ Roll #2 5 + 4 = 9
"GO DOWN!" she shouts angrily at them, each word creating another wave of flaming holy power.
>Wrath [1d10+4]Roll #1 10 + 4 = 14
[1d10] Rolling HugeRoll #1 2 = 2
Flaming cries out as she charges for the Centipede as well, bringing the full force of her horns upon it in a final charge with all her strength
[1d10+5] DC -2 All or Nothing on the CentipedeRoll #1 9 + 5 = 14
The centipede settles down again, apparently growing quite tired of this hullabaloo. >Centipede 2/3 knockdowns
However, in a display of braznness, the goblin leaps off the back of his mount and blasts Flaming with a full net of black lightning, knocking her to the ground for a third time. He lets up his onslaught, and as he does, another ghostly mare floats through the wall and picks up Flaming. The mare passes through the wall and sets down Flaming on a flat bench to the right of the doorway leading to the arena. "Well, you tried. If your partner can pull it through, then you'll still get the tokens."https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AVBeTMCKJ5c
Unable to attack Amy directly, the goblin puts his hands together and tries to punch his way through the white fire, covering himself with a dark blue aura.
[1d10+2] SpellbreakerRoll #1 5 + 2 = 7
Amy turns back to see Flaming taken off the arena. She grunts angrily. "Don't worry, Flaming. I got this!"
"I WILL NOT BE BEATEN!" she shrieks, her holy flames washing over the enemy like a tide of pain.
>[1d10+5] for Wrath>extra +1 for Crystal Emotions (I remembered!)Roll #1 9 + 5 = 14
Flaming cries out as the goblin slams into her with a fist full of black lightning, the buffalo crying out as she's electrocuted and sent down to her knees once again, letting herself be picked up by the ghost.
As she comes too on the bench, she looks into the arena, "I lost….? I LOST?!" She growls angerly, slamming her head down into the bench in a headbutt before she calls out over to Amy
"Take them down Amy, I know you can do it! Win!"
The goblin's rapid punches clear the white flames, leaving you unprotected. But, your next blast knocks back both the goblin and the centipede against the far doorway. Although the goblin climbs back aboard his mount, he appears to be on his last legs. The centipede charges forward, unabated by the flames.>Goblin 2/3 knockdowns
"Well, don't get so worked up over it. I saw that your friend still had a lot in her, so I think she's got this."Roll #1 1 + 4 = 5
Flaming growls as she sticks her head down. "I HATE to lose. And we really need these coins, too. But, I think you might be right. Look at her GO out there, I could feel the heat she's putting out from outside the stadium if I left."
>>686940>turn 1 of new wolf
As Amy's energy and wolf form fade, she is empowered by Flaming's Commandment. She roars as her body flickers. She grows a little bit as her color gets a little darker. As it her body rests in a pale grey, her tattoos begin to glow a deep black.
She huffs slowly as she exerts herself to keep up with her opponents. "I CAN'T lose here!" she huffs.
She barks at them loudly again, not letting up at them.
>Wrath again! [1d10+4]Roll #1 8 + 4 = 12
"Whatcha need the coins for so badly, if I can ask?">>686944
You push back the worm again. Unable to attack you directly, it rampages about the room, thrashing wildly and attempting to knock over everything in sight in an attempt to get at you.
>roll instant dodge, DC 8 to avoid the mess of debris which the centipede is tossing around the room
[1d10+2]Roll #1 9 + 2 = 11
Flaming watches the fight intensely as the centipede begins kicking up the entire arena trying to take down Wolf Amy, looking up at the ghost mare as she answers, "We lost a fight yesterday that nearly cost us our lives, and where we're going next, it's going to be even more dangerous… I was hoping to use these fights to help my friend get a little more confident, but also heard thought it could make us stronger in general. Those relics sound like they'll do the trick."
"JUST. SIT. DOWN!" Amy shouts as she continues her assault.
>Wrath [1d10+4]Roll #1 10 + 4 = 14
Amy focuses her assault all around her as well to push away any debris falling toward her. [1d10] to "dodge"Roll #1 7 = 7
"If that's the case, you may want to try that beard thing that came in recently… supposedly it was shaved off the face of a saint. I guess that could help but you'd look a little silly in it.">>686947>>686948
"Grrrrgh…! Oh, come on, play fair!" the goblin shouts as Amy prepares the final blast. The explosion knocks him and his mount up through the viewing-hole in the arena's ceiling, until they fall down and land somewhere well outside the area. The ghostly mare floats back inside and gives Amy three tokens. "Good job. You guys are really crushing it for a pair of mortal weenies. You and those other two that came with you, for that matter."
As Amy manages to shoot out a final wave of a bark that sends both of their opponents up and out through hole of the arena, Flaming looks on in shock, smiling widely as she skips and hops out of her bench area towards the wolf-ified pony. "YESS! You did it! I knew you could Amy, way to go!" She shouts in glee as she runs up and bonks her head into Amy's leg congratulatory.
She turns and looks at the ghostly mare and raises her brow, "Wait… what? 'Beard thing'? What 'beard thing', you mean some kind of prize for the tokens?"
Amy huffs and puffs heavily as she reverts and shrinks back to pony form. Once her body is back to normal, she doubles over onto her knees and throws up some black goop.
Once she is done throwing up, she wipes her mouth and lets out a victorious shout to the sky. She then hobbles out of the arena, completely fatigued.
Amy curiously pokes at the ghost's chest as she talks to her. "Thanks!" she suddenly perks up and stops poking the ghost. "But, I'm a girl," she adds as if she's correcting something the ghost said.>>686947
"That was a good fight!" Amy says with a very fatigued laugh, giving Flaming a half-hearted headbutt to Flaming's head.
Amy backs off as she sees Amy hock up some bile, and cringes. "Ewwww… Amy, are you alright? You must have been exhausted after shouting that much!" She bows her head, "I'm sorry I wasn't much help at the end, but, it looks like my last bit of magic helped in the end. You were incredible out there, my throat would be sore after something like that."
She looks at their three new coins. "A few more and we should be able to get something good, but before we do another fight, I'm thinking we should take Zjetya's advice and ask if anyone isn't gonna use theirs anymore."
*Flaming backs off
"Yeah, it's a very strange artifact we've gotten recently in a raid on a few temples out in Nibbuta. Supposedly, it came from the face of a saint. You two sound like foreigners, based on your accents. But, in a lot of religions, the body parts and bones of saints are highly revered, because they can perform miracles."
You pick up Zjetya's and Volkama's voices over the din of chatter and combat. As you look down the hall, you see them talking with Evil's Judgment, and an orange goo pony in a blue gi. You recognize him as Sir Estuary, whom you met in Fantasia Palace, as a traveling companion of Mister Friendly and Freischutz.
"I totally couldn't have done that without your power, Flaming," Amy says as she pats Flaming on the back. "Shortyhorns," she adds after a moment.
"I'm fine," Amy says with a laugh and a wave of her hoof. "That's, wasn't a fatigue barf. That was a negative barf."
She laughs and points at the black goop on the ground that came from her mouth. "You think that's a normal color?"
She sighs. Or just breaths heavily from fatigue. "Yeah, we should probably get some coins faster somehow. That was rough."
Flaming blushes and smiles a bit as she's pat on the back, looking at Amy with a welling of pride as she congratulates her. "Thanks… but this was totally your victory, Amy. You should be proud." She snickers, "Still having trouble saying my nick name? You remember I said I don't mind either, right?"
As you explain what the barf was, Flaming glares, "ANY kind of barf is bad Amy," she looks at the bile, and cringes, "ESPECIALLY black barf, that's definitely not a normal color… wait, were you eating a lot of black food?"
"What? No!" Amy says, waving her hooves.
"Have I not explained it before?" Amy cocks her head. "I mean, I threw it all up on Shei that one time the other day. It's… well I'm not really sure. I mean, it's my negativity. Through my meditation, I learned how to literally force my emotions out of me. I use them for my attacks. It… really doesn't feel good coming out, though."
"I'll be honest, though…" Amy says, looking back at the black goo on the ground. "I'm not sure how exactly I made it able to turn into a like actually physical thing…"
Flaming winces, "Oh… yeah, I DO remember that but, I just thought you were sick at the time. You WERE kind of going through a lot and, throwing on Shei I thought was just your body's way of coping." She looks and turns at the black goop, her eyebrows raising. "So, what you're saying then is, that, that barf is literally your emotions? Your bad ones like anger and stuff?" She goes over to inspect the goop, dare not touching it.
"That's really weird… how about AFTER it comes out, do you feel better? You'd have to be right?" As you comment on not knowing how you did it, she asks, "Did Ego do it?"
"Yeah, I usually feel a lot better after."
"But, If Ego has something to do with it, I don't think she does it on purpose. I mean, I learned how to do that specifically to control myself back when I didn't understand I had a demon in me. So… it kind of ruins her fun."
Amy shrugs. "You can go ahead and touch it," she says as she pokes at it. "It's gross, but it also disappears pretty fast. Since it's… you know… not supposed to be real."
As she pokes at it, the substance appears to start evaporating. As it evaporates off her hoof, some brown residue is left behind. Amy jumps and wipes her hoof on the ground quickly. "Ew ew ew. Okay maybe some of that WAS me being tired," she laughs.
Flaming looks up in surprise as you admit it's safe to touch, and, not wanting to appear cowardly, dares to do so, only giving it a light prod of her hoof as it begins evaporating. As it evaporates entirely, she jumps back from the brown residue, laughing at Amy as she scrapes her hoof on the ground. "Pfffffhahahah! I THOUGHT it was gonna be gross underneath!"
She chuckles as she makes sure she didn't get anymore on her own hoof, "I guess I'll wait to touch it next time. So, that's how you got rid of all your negative emotions back when you were having to control yourself? I guess I never saw you THAT angry before Shei made you that angry, you never got mad at me or anyone before that since I met you. You sure it's safe just getting them out like that? I usually just stomp stuff if I'm mad."
Amy laughs. "Of COURSE it's not safe! Have you MET me? I'm insane!"
"I got pretty angry at that Orcus demon sheep guy," Amy contemplates. "I got all wolfy and I couldn't control myself. I remember I threw it up so much I used it like a laser out of my mouth when I turned back into a pony. When I have enough of it and I have enough power going, I can make it a a really strong weapon. But, that's usually when I can't control myself. Which is also when I REALLY need to do it."
Flaming smiles, "Oh, right. Heh… I guess I almost forgot who I was talking too. That makes more sense then."
As she flashes back to the Orcus fight, she opens her eyes wider, "OH! So that was the same thing only, focused into a form of attack? So it doesn't HAVE to be barf. Huh…" she rubs at her chin. "So, it's really not too different from when you let all your rage into an attack… well, I understand the need to get it out of you. And if you could put it into something useful, might as well. Still," she winces at the barf, "That way is kind of gross still, though. I think you should try banging your head into something next time and see if that does it."
"Hehe, well my head isn't as hard as yours," Amy says, rubbing Flaming's head.