The door creaks open as the orange and silver-maned mare pushes her way in. In her mouth is a small wicker basket with glasses of carrot juice neatly sealed.
"Morninb morninb! I'b hab a week's worf…"
She closes the door behind her and speaks clearly to you.
"A weeks worth, as requested! It wouldn't be difficult to deliver these daily you know, they would stay fresher!"
I'll shrug and shake my head slightly.
"With how easy it is to keep them, and how well you all seal them, they stay plenty fresh. I've yet had a jar you and yours have given me go stale."
I'll begin floating the jars out with magic, while replacing them with the bag of bits they cost.
"And besides, a young mare like yourself probably has quite a few more interesting things to do than run daily deliveries to an adventurer who's been long retired."
"Pbphb- Yea right, I'm swamped
with all the carrots need juicing."
Her eyes wander around your living room, anxious to ask something written all over her face.
I'll start floating the jars over to the storage area. It cost a mint getting it over here, but those new Equestrian Coldboxes really do help this stuff keep longer. Once they're sorted, I'll return to the living room.
"Now, what seems to be the problem? You look as if you've eaten something that's not agreed with you."
Lost in her thoughts, the pony jumps when you address her again.
"I've got this friend that I'm asking for, well friends, they're not- well they don't.. What's it like being ad-adventurer?"
I'll think for a moment, then sigh.
"It's… hard to say, if I'm to be honest. An adventure is a wild mix of good times, bad times, and soul-crushingly terrible times. Sometimes you have more fun than not, other times you end up starving for a week because someone else finished what you set out to do a month before you got there."
I'll wander over to a small picture I've put up on the wall. It's nothing fancy, but it was from a time I had friends to share adventures with.
"The short of it is that, for most adventurers, the decision to become one isn't the best one. After all, they only tell stories about the ponies who succeed, and not about the ones that didn't."
The anxious on her face sours with disappointment.
"Oh, I better get going then. My friends, they were out buying whatever weapons and food they could. I need to go wish them luck."
Carrot Juice hooks the basket she brought up with her snout, then closes the door as she leaves. From the window, she can be seen looking down your self-made road into the wilderness before she turns to head towards the city.
It's better she know what to expect. Adventures are only these great, amazing things after you're done with them, or if someone else is telling the story. But… well, some adventures are necessary, aren't they? If it weren't for the new crops of wild youths, monsters and the like would have stretched the army thin.
I'll stretch for a moment, then toss on my cloak. I'm due for a walk about town, aren't I? I can at least go see off the newbies.
Making sure to lock up on the way out, I'll head towards town.
The sun is in the sky, hot rays contrasted with a cool lightly salty breeze. Tiny chanterelle myconids liven up this quiet walk. Carrot Juice's wooden farm/factory is just outside the city's walls, or what used to be walls as basic houses are magically glued to the top and sides now. Lively as ever, the gentle hustle and bustle has this very Equestrian feel as small merchants politely crowd outside of established stores. In the city's center, a great fountain pouring purified water for residents to take at their leisure; and behind it is a raised board showing news from the borderlands.
Always a far cry from the walled fortress it was ten years ago, and even more-so than the poolside gathering of taverns it was to the province's first adventurers.
Carrot Juice, easy to see by her bonnet, is with a group of ill-equipped earth ponies. The look on her face not resembling that of a good farewell.
Well, that's always a good first step, leave town with a mare angry at you. That's how you either get married or ruin someone's life. I suppose I'll get closer to the group, see if I can't eavesdrop a bit. Try not to get too close, though. Don't want to make it obvious.
" -n't you listen to reason? Or rumors? If Bridge Pass really did get burnt up then there's no fort or ferry that'll stop this menace! Stay here! Train here!"
"Carrot c'mon, if we don't stop this then who will? At least seven adventuring groups disappeared going after this threat- "
"*At least seven and they all had enough money to buy potions!*"
Carrot Juice chokes up, killing the argument while one of the group tries to comfort her. A paper larger than others and painted in black and red towers at the board's top.
[WHIRLWIND MURDERER BACK FROM HADES: INCOMING NEWS FROM SURVIVORS PAINTS REVENGE TO "WHITHERING WHISPER'S" BLOODY REINCARNATION]
Withering Whispers? Withering Whispers… Now, where did I hear that before? Surely not one of mine, was he? No, can't be, otherwise I'd be getting an earful, no doubt.
What's the group over there made of, anyway? I can't imagine the group has a healer among them, if Carrot is so worried.
'Whisper' sounds familiar, but this sounds like a Pegasus' or Earth Pony's name which is far different than the Whisper you put 10ft under.
There are five earth ponies, not including Carrot Juice. All of them are wearing several layers of cloth with the largest stallion wearing a heavy rope-net too. There is a shield, two spears, and three clubs between them all- not including whatever kitchen utensils and bedding is strapped on. Were you not listening in, they'd look like a camping party. Carrot Juice tries to plead in between dry sobs, but her words against theirs turn into a strange smattering of mumbles and jumbles.
Underneath the big sign are smaller news snippets plastered over each other. Chronomancer reincarnating this dead menace, another adventuring party finds what's left of the unicorn to get his news. Various militias and adventuring groups' after-action reports. And the newest addition to these is the first official report a scout did as his fort burned, something about celestial orbs and cosmic fires taking out swathes of combatants.
By the princesses, am I glad I retired. This shit just looks exhausting.
But… well, old ponies meddle, I guess. So I can meddle here.
I'll wander up to the assembled group.
"Should I be worried that this little weekend camping group is making my juice deliverymare cry in the street?"
The group turns to you, slightly surprised but not enough for the largest to speak up.
"Bein' sorry th' ol stallion, we's- "
just saying our goodbyes to Carrot Juice here, sir. Sorry to cause you trouble."
"T-tell them! Tell them what you told me! They can't go- tell them!
I'll lazily eye over the group.
"Oh, it's no trouble to me
, I'm not her parent. But, as someone who's had his fair share of adventures, I just thought I'd find it fit to warn you that, if you all leave as you are now, I doubt even a one of you'd come back. At least, in one piece."
I'll stroke my beard a moment.
"And that's if you run away at the first sign of a single bandit, much less this, hrm, this 'withering willows' or whatever his name is. I mean, five of you and not one healer or even an apprentice mage! Not a thought to party balance in the slightest."
Squint a bit.
"Don't tell me you've found some old artifact or something that's inflating your confidence? Knew an adventurer like that, once. He lost the thing and completely crumpled, right then and there. Couldn't fight his way out of a cabbage patch."
There's a mare and four stallions in this group, with the scrawniest speaking out more for her pride than the party's well being.
"Maybe, but this is our turf. I've camped out this way a lot of times and even fought off some wolves!"
"Look sir, this isn't just a glory hound. That menace is going after friend and foe alike from some of the news runners, so even if we meet bandits they'll want our help as much as Paladin Leaf Dancer would."
Something hooved, winged, and light touches ground behind you.
I'll roll my eyes.
"Camping and adventuring are different. In an adventure, the things you run across want
to kill you. And as for that silliness,"
I'll point at the one who said it wasn't a glory hound mission.
"That's just puffed up story nonsense. You run up on world-ending threats and bandits will still
try and pilfer everything you own because they're bandits
. It's the life they chose."
My ear will flick to the new arrival, but I won't turn around just yet.
The winged thing behind you mutters under her breath
"(Heh, ain't that the truth.)"
Doubt is finally beginning to spread over the earthies' faces.
"So, who'r ya t'be lecturin' us in th'way?"
"Someone who managed to live long enough to retire from the line of work you're trying to get into."
I'll stand a bit straighter.
"The name, though less well-known these days, is Astra Aurum. And I've been living here for years already, if you'd paid attention."
Turning slightly, I'll look at who joined in on this little party.
Your name doesn't phase any of the group here, except for Carrot Juice who's known the few tales you weaved in between deliveries. The pony behind your left, however, is staring at you in awe. Mouth agape and crystal pointed lance sliding off her silver-coated shoulder. From her reaction does this group of earth ponies change their demeanor and quietly rethink their plans.
"I thought you died."
"Oh? I'm not that
old just yet."
I'll turn to face them a bit more, being roughly perpendicular to the group and new arrival.
"And who might you be then, miss? Don't believe I've seen you about town before this."
"Silver Lane! Of the southern province I mean! Ohh you're the reason I took up sky lancing! I can't believe it! You probably don't remember but I watched you take down a wendigo over Bridgeton!"
The silver and white-haired pony's lance hits the ground with a loud clang as her eyes grow wide as saucers. Carrot Juice and her friends have taken to whispering to each other and looking at their weapons while this fanpony gushes.
"…A-and I used that air spin your marefriend did to dodge those skeleton bombs! Oh man! I need to find my group!"
"Is that so?"
I'll not correct her about the marefriend business. She was more enamored with the leader of the group, after all. Floating her lance back up off the ground, I'll return it to her.
"Now, what's a lancer like yourself doing down here? I don't suppose this is related to the rumors of the fort going down, or the other dangerous things I've seen on the message board over there?"
"Not at all! Just touching down here to get some choice meals before heading out to take that Whirlwind down a notch."
She grabs the lance and puffs out her chest.
"Remember my name, Astra Aurum! I'll make you proud!"
Her stance shifts into a vertical takeoff, and in a puff of kicked up dust, is gone. Carrot Juice waves goodbye while following her stern looking friends out the way you came.
In the back of your head, the name Star Whisper is making rounds. His method of devastation is pretty similar to what the fort's report read; and not to mention that because of the lack of location, only word from a chronomancer does anyone have a clue to his origin. Then again there were plenty of corrupt casters and fury fiends from here to the north that curdled your names in blood..
I'll scratch my beard a bit. Was I ever that high energy when I was a younger pony? No, I couldn't have been. The Wendigo had gotten me rather miffed, though…
I'll clack my hooves together.
"Ah, she forgot to get her food."
Wait a minute… Didn't one of those reports mention a chronomancer raising the dead? More of a necromancer's line of work, but if the menace was never dead to begin with, and only frozen in time… Oh bother. I never did burn the body, either.
Well, if he was in fact put in stasis instead of killed, he can't have gotten too much stronger, right? The current crop should be able to take him down. Always seems like some new up-and-comer is fighting worse things than we did.
But… if it really is him, then I suppose I have a responsibility to make sure he stays dead this time.
I'll have to wait until I get a more definite report on it. It'll give me time to prepare.
Several days pass in silence of remembering old times, relearning old spells, keeping an eye and ear out for any news within the city.
One brisk morning the sun rises a shade redder than usual with one singular smokestack coming from the east. Before thoughts can complete themselves, there is another knock at the door.
It's a bit early for the weekly delivery… Let's see who it is.
>>689447Opening the door reveals pitch black night, burning houses, and a lone unicorn stallion standing away from you with his head lowered. Slowly he lifts his head and turns to look.
"I'VE. FOUND. YOOOUUUU
"Hey! You okay?"
With a blink, the portal scenery disappears and the Silvery white adventurer is standing alone on your porch.
I'll blink a few times.
"Yes, just… a late evening last night."
If that spell was what I think it was, then I'm running out of time. And so is this town. I might have to leave some safeguards so the place doesn't get attacked while I'm out.
"So, to what do I owe the pleasure, miss Lane?"
The mare pouts
"I know my well rested stallions, that was a nightmare projection just now wasn't it? I came to say that this Whirlwind loser was about a day away from here so you should come watch us in action, but where are you off to in a hurry?"
"Same place, actually. Because your 'Whirlwind loser' is the same Star Whisper I dealt with, once upon a time. And he's been looking for me."
I'll turn around and head back inside, gesturing her to follow.
"I've just about finished packing, but I've a few wards left to set around town in case he manages to get past or around us. He was a nasty piece of work when he was alive before, and I can't imagine his attitude has improved since."
She perks up and closes the door behind her, setting the lance from last time against it pointing down.
"Really? I've never heard of that one before, when did your group take him on? Was he why Autumn Winds didn't come back?"
Question after question this one
"Star Whisper was an old, deranged monster when we fought him. He relished taking groups of ponies and breaking their spirits with his magic, and took a perverse joy in proving himself better than other wizards in personal duels."
I'll tug at my beard a moment.
"If it weren't for Autumn, all of us would have been dead. And she paid a heavy price for it. Almost died, herself. I… couldn't save her wings. Or leg."
I'll pause a moment.
"So, yes, I suppose you could say he's why she didn't come back."
Silver Lane's face tenses up and her ears fold back
"I'm glad she's still alive somewhere, but this guy coming back is like a bad insult. How long will your wards take to set?"
"They should be in place by the time we leave this afternoon. They're not complicated, but there will be a few of them."
Your house guest busies herself wandering around your house as wards and defenses are set up. Interior and exterior spells in place, the pegasus gently whispers something back into her lance before picking it up again.
"Right, that should be the last one for the house. Just need to drop a few more around the edges of town, and we should be good to go."
There is a distinct silent walk back into the city. Close to the farm clearing, chantelle myconids are fighting against just-as-small morel myconids. The pegasus spears a few and puts them in one of her few packs before catching up.
Carrot Juice is out today, dunking a bushel of carrots into water and them smashing them on a block.
"Carrot, good day. Work going well?"
"Morning! Sorry, the pegasus asked me where you lived. Did you finish that week's worth?"
She eagerly smashes another carrot without looking at it, orange veggie parts fly in every direction. Her face is easy to read, again something to do with her adventurer friends.
"It's no trouble. It's nice having another pony interested in my old stories. As for the juice, I've not quite finished them off, but I hope to."
I'll let her smash another bushel.
"So, I take it that your friends haven't quite calmed themselves down, then?"
Carrot parts fly
"It's like they were possessed by those weapons or something!"
More carrot parts fly
"First sign of danger and they want to die!"
She splashes the water instead of dunking carrots, wet, startled, but musing in her own thoughts.
I'll gently put a hoof on her shoulder.
"They're young. Young, and… if you'll forgive me, stupid. They've spent their entire lives in this town and honestly believe the stories happened exactly like how the bards tell them. You know better, but getting them to understand is an expensive lesson you don't want them to take."
My expression will harden a little.
"Are they still in town?"
The silver and orange pony stares at her reflection.
"They were when I came home, please, I'll promise I won't charge you for anymore deliveries. Don't let them die."
I'll wave that off.
"If I didn't want to pay for my juice, I'd make it myself."
Smiling slightly, I'll continue.
"I will do my best to convince them to be less foolish. Assuming I can catch them before they exceed my expectations of how foolish they can actually be."
I'll begin to turn, but stop.
"They should be near the town center, correct?"
"Yea, there's a fruit shop we share breakfast at after our deliveries. That was a while ago so maybe on the road already. Thank you."
The pony takes her hooves out of the water and hugs you, then sheepishly lets go and tries to dry them off.
Silver Lane, politely quiet this whole time speaks up.
"I'll be at the gates, looking for those bumpkins. My group will be waiting for you sir!"
"I'll be seeing you there, then."
And, with that, I'll Teleport down to down. Lived here long enough I should have a good mental map of the place.
Quietly shifting the air and atmosphere with your destination, what normally passes as an explosive teleportation goes quietly. You leave Carrot Juice with smells of the city square and end up in front of [The Berry Mixer]. This is an open store built under an overhang with tables and counters moving as needed. None of Carrot's friends are here.
Knocking, I'll enter.
"Pardon me, I'm looking for a small gaggle of idiots. Have you seen them?"
An elderly mare looks over to you from her side of the counter
"Wearing loads of scarves and carrying around sticks and shovels? Ye they were here, left about five minutes ago."
"That was them, I'm afraid. I don't suppose you know in which direction?"
The mare shakes her head.
"Didn't follow after they pay. Good bunch o' kids, hope they take the south road campin' as north an east are getting dangerous."
"You and I both. Thank you."
Which is closer, the north end of town or the east one?
The east end, as the north end extends well towards several harbors. Due to this it also has more complex walls to defend incoming ships. The eastern edge of town is pretty self-defended as it is one of the two points of access that adventurers and caravans enter when coming into the city.
Well, they couldn't have cleared the whole town in five minutes… I should still be able to get there ahead of them. Teleporting again.
You're on the east end of town, startling some ponies and alerting a group of adventurers further down the road. The gate on this end is old looking and you can spot Carrot's friends still coming this way. They are uneasy, but determination is painted on their faced.
I'll make my way towards them. It's been a few years, but I can still walk in an intimidating manner, especially if the wind decides to cooperate and billow my cloak properly. If not, well, I'll just look like a grumpy old wizard.
Once I'm within good shouting range (about 50 feet or so), I'll start correcting their course.
"So, where do you lot think you're going?"
With magic burning off your horn, and a manufactured breeze picking up, you set the right kind of image. The largest of these earthies rolls his eyes as they continue on their trek. Others' eyes are on you and scanning for who is being spoken to, all while this impudent bunch doesn't slow down.
The smallest of them shouts back
"We're lending our weapons to this fight! You can't stop us, you can't stop me!"
"Oh but I could. It would be hilariously easy."
"But, if you really wanted to 'lend us your weapons', as you put it, I'd see them put to better use here, in case Star Whisper gets past us. The town needs ponies who can organize and help with an evacuation in the worst case scenario."
Impertinence leaps from this mare, but a hoof around her face slows this growing argument. The biggest pony's not looking at you, he's glancing between you and other figures to the left and right. A nudge from him and the rest of this group begins to see that you're no alone to what you believe.
Before anymore words can carry through the air, a great light shines behind you and illuminates the world then closely followed by the crackle of magical explosions.
He can't be here this early! Spin to face the source of the noise. Prep Homing Magic. '1d10+1'Roll #1 7 + 1 = 8
There is a great illuminating dome that towers into the sky. The adventurers behind you along the road sides aren't phased by what happened, but Carrot's friends definitely are.
Three orbs surround you as Silver Lane lands off the road.
"Found you! Some containment mages trapped a bridge several miles out. Whisper's there but I don't know how long he'll be around. HEY LOSERS! IF YOU'RE SURPRISED BY THAT THEN YOU WON'T LAST OUT HERE!"
"Not for long if memory serves me right."
Taking a moment to steady myself, I'll turn back to face the young group.
"Listen, I know it's painful to realize, but this is well beyond what you're capable of dealing with right now. That barrier isn't going to hold for very long. Probably less than a day, at best. What I need you all to do is stay here
, and if Whisper gets past us I need you to round up everyone you can, and take them to my house, up there on the hill. The wards I've set will take the whole place, and everyone in it, away from here. I'd set it up like that because, in my youth I was enamored with the idea of a mobile hideout."
The scrawny mare fights as she's taken back to the city square, this group at least quietly respects your decision.
Silver Lane leads you down the road, talking about her group 4-pony group. She's a lancer with a catalyst-tip. Another pegasus who uses some large enchanted crossbow, an earthie who carries around armor and spikes, and a mage. From how she speaks it seems their careers weren't always of high adventure, and that the mage is a newcomer. A mile out from the dome's floor three ponies fitting Silver's description emerge from the left.
Looks like I'll be filling the role of healer, then.
"Hello. Seems I'll be bothering you all today, cleaning up an old mess of mine that seems to have come back."
Ironheart, a stallion of iron and spikes, laughs
"Don't worry about it! There's money in it somewhere for us! Any words of advice before we face death?"
"He didn't take well to having a fort dropped on him, but I don't think we've the luxury of having one on-hoof this time."
I'll think for a moment.
"I suppose… expect just about anything? He was an anti-group specialist, after all. And I doubt he's changed focus. If you catch him off-guard, make sure it isn't just a feint before diving in."
"Anti-group? Eh Comet, rough up some more inure spells before we go 'in!"
Are you ready for this?
I'll be sure to bolster everyone beforehand (auto-success on getting up from helpless). After that, we're pretty much as ready as we will be.
Entering the dome isn't difficult, finding this party-killing monster is what's difficult. Normally someone who hit these traps would've been blasting every direction and cratering the ground to get out. In here, well lit and quiet, there's no movement save for your breathing.
"Well. I suppose he just enjoys not having anyone else getting in the way. Keep on your hooves. He's probably near the middle."
Eyes open, ears swiveling.
It's eerily quiet in here, but halfway towards the dome's middle is when Comet cries out in pain.
"He's not moved from the bridge! My head! I tried to astrally project but he's trapped it! I'll catch up, he's not going anywhere from there!"
Ironheart stays with the unicorn mare while Silver Lane smirks, punches something under her armor and disappears in a flash of light and exploding magic.
And they immediately split up. It's a trap. An obvious, horrible trap.
I'll tell the bowpegasus to keep us covered, and hurry off after Lane, towards the center of the bubble.
The colors of the world invert for a split second before there's an explosion from where this bridge is. Water, rocks, leaves, and animal parts rain down as something smoking and burnt teleports behind you
"That fucker broke my lance!"
Target Mark takes to the sky and points you further down the road.
"I hope you prepared spares, then. You'll probably burn through most of them."
And I'll Haste us. '1d10+1'Roll #1 6 + 1 = 7
The world slows down, your body becomes heavy, and minute details from the gloss over the trees to small sparkles in the air pop dangerously into focus. This odd magical clarity gives you (+1 Turn Action) time to think and act with extra to spare!
"Don't worry about it! Get this guy!
Keep going forward until I get a visual on Whisper. Don't know how many actions I'll have left once I spot him, though.
You have (2 turns) left to act before Haste runs out.
Rounding a bend in the road and you see a thin, crazy-eyed unicorn looking in your direction from across the bridge. His movements are hauntingly the same, even in enhanced slow-motion this is a nightmarish sight in day time.
"I'LL SEE YOU BURIED THIS TIME!!
"Not if I bury you again first!"
and then Penitence (reduce target tier by 1/2 on crit) '1d10+1'Roll #1 4 + 1 = 5
/ Roll #2 6 + 1 = 7
"PRIDE BEFORE THE FALL!
The pony's eyes gloss over as your speed slows back down to normal standards. For his own thoughts he rushes you, lights his horn with a starry fire and launches one massive fireball at you! This great dust-spectacled midnight fireball hurls towards you with all the fury of an old crotchety stallion. The smell of seared dirt and ozone reaches your nose before this thing does!
Magic Bolt, Ice enchanted. '1d10+1'
If I hit it right, it'll disrupt the fireball before impact.Roll #1 8 + 1 = 9
Your ice crystal explodes inside the fireball, it's kinetic force driving the power back at the unicorn. He inhales and spreads celestial dust all around him, covering his in this strange thick smoke as a thick arrow flies through the air and sticks to the smoke's exterior!
Right, I'll use this time to prepare for him to pop up again. Homing Magic '1d10+1'Roll #1 10 + 1 = 11
The smoke slowly envelops him and his side of the river, then his silhouette is illuminated and disappears in that thick fog. As you finish making 5 ice crystals, the atmosphere fills out behind you
"Time spells have limits, worm!
"I'm sure that chronomancer you murdered would have appreciated that lesson before meeting you."
Spin, firing all five ice missiles. '5d10'
Then, launch an energy orb (lightning) '1d10+1'Roll #1 3, 9, 4, 5, 4 = 25
/ Roll #2 4 + 1 = 5
Unburdened by time he quickly dodges three ice spires, takes one in his side and another scratching his face! Then fires directly into your Lightning Orb!
The electrical explosion carries you both away from each other! Soreness and an undying energy flood your body as somewhere far away the other unicorn is laughing.
I'll Heal '1d10+1' myself. Hopefully he's more concerned with lording it over me than he is with killing these other adventurers.Roll #1 9 + 1 = 10
The sluggish feeling in your body disappears, and you're back at full health.
Another bolt flies into the strange moving smoke and gets stuck on its exterior. From it leaps the Unicorn once more! His horn lights up and from it a beam resembling the sky strikes through the air!
The pegasus arbalist disappears before it can touch him, then the beam tears down and through the treetops shortening the forest!
"PARANOID AND WEAK!"
"No, just knowing you couldn't resist revealing yourself."
Shining Beam, full blast of electricity. '1d10+3'Roll #1 5 + 3 = 8
You hit him with nearly everything possible, electricity pouring through and reflecting off the crazed unicorn as he tries to his you with something shining yet black at its core!
Before he can reach you, another bright flash of light comes from the right and Ironheart sends the unicorn flying into the air. A bolt from the sky followed by Silver Lane's piercing lance from the sky hit nothing as the Unicorn disappears once more!
Stop firing for the moment. No sense maintaining the beam if there's no target.
"Is everyone still in one piece?"
Homing magic should be off cooldown, so I'll fire that up again. '1d10+1'Roll #1 10 + 1 = 11
"Comet's trying to undo whatever followed Target Mark through that teleport- GET SOME SPACE! We're still good though!
Five ice crystals form around, with a slight chill up your spine. Then quickly and without warning, the ground beneath you explodes. You bounce off the dome's edge as nothing has any weight to it.
"PARANOID AND WEAK!
"I can't move!"
"There's stuff everywhere! Shooting won't be easy!"
What spellery is this? For the time being, though, I need to provide support against that damage.
Healing bonds '1d1+1' while I scan for where that bastard might have popped off to.Roll #1 1 + 1 = 2
You expend yourself, tapping the magical strength within and quickly channel 3 orbs of healing to hone in on random spots. Each explodes in a red mist that slows down Star Whisper until he and the anti-gravity both end. Everybody topples to the ground in various degrees of *THUD*
"Right where I need you! Because this was only going to end one way!"
The unicorn's horn splits, tearing reality into space close to him!
Yeah, well, he needs to chill. Fire off all five of the prepared ice missiles at him '5d10' and take what cover I can.
"You don't want to get hit by that! Dodge if you can!"Roll #1 6, 5, 5, 9, 2 = 27
He launches orbs of his own just as yours connect. The first explodes with no issue, but each subsequent crystal that hits brings his exploding celestial fires closer and closer until he scream in pain!
"My eyes! AGH MY EYES! YOU WORMS WILL DIE WITH ME!"
His body cracks from the horn with unnatural light emanating out. Then after this, a great orb forms from him and blows out, the atmosphere thickens and everyone not nailed down is thrown back!
Luckily I bolstered everyone before the fight. They'll be getting up if they haven't already been knocked out.
A pity I can't respond immediately.
"You'll die alone, same as last time, you ghoul!"
A moment to catch your breath weakens this headache to a sharp momentary pain. The group is back on their hooves, save for some hits sustained after getting thrown like ragdolls. Ironheart and Comet emerge from the forest ground, Silver Lane lands on the road while Target Mark's head pops up fallen trees.
A quick peeks shows that the enemy's eyes are as stars bursting through his skull, half of this thing's body is cracked or gone.
"THEN COME AT ME! ALL OF YOU!"
As if we'd be so foolish.
But, I'm ending this now. I am going to encase him in so much ice it would take throwing him into the sun itself to thaw him out.
Shining Ice Beam. '1d10+3'
I'm going to keep this up as long as I can, until either he's dead or explodes.Roll #1 9 + 3 = 12
The unicorn's horn lights up to ignite another Energy Orb on himself, detonating early from your Shining Ice Beam and encasing him in ice and celestial fire! You set layer upon layer of ice to contain this pony until what's left is a great crystal that matches a starry night. Yet it's not finished, as even through a foot of ice he is manipulating and drawing in power from all directions. His silhouette emerges as that of the Sun God's before disappearing! First there is the ethereal push, then ice begins to crack!
"Everyone, stand back! If he bursts out, the debris will be dangerous!"
Grit my teeth and maintain the beam. '1d10+3'Roll #1 9 + 3 = 12
The celestial iceberg explodes, returning and breaking your beam's focus as what's left behind is a reminder frozen in time. In the midst of where this old unicorn stood, a great shining stone. Along cold surface of this strange statue are twinkling stars, celestial bodies, galactic waves. His celestial fires and your unending ice have created something timeless.
I'll collapse onto my side.
"By the Princesses, I hope that's the last I ever see of this bastard."
But did he really die? I can't relax until I know for sure.
Try and get my hooves back under me. If he decides to pop out of nowhere, I don't want to be on the ground.
The brilliant light in the middle is vaguely pony-shaped, but aside from that there's no pressure coming or going from the epicenter. Being incased in his own fire likely cooked him through.
Once we get back to town, I'll have to send a missive to the capitol, to get them to make sure he's properly dead or sealed.
Breath a sigh of relief.
"Alright, sound off, who's still here and how's the damage?"
Silver Lane lands next to you, burnt with her cooked mane jutting behind.
"Got a few good scars out of this, but we'll live. Oh I want to explode, we just stood hoof to hoof against your old foe! THINK OF THE LEGEND!! WHOOO!"
"I'm thinking more of the cleanup. And the fact I don't have to relocate my house."
Chuckle a bit.
"But try to leave me out of this story, if you can? My time in the spotlight is long over."
"Yea that retired life looked like a boon from here! Hahah, you know that someone will include you in this story even if we don't. Right? Anyway, we're gonna stay around to see if someone'll pay for this. You're welcome to sit and tell us stories if you want! That house ain't going nowhere."
It's around afternoon as the dome disintegrates and several more groups of adventurers come wandering in.
"Well, what did you want to hear about? If you've been following me since the Wendigo, you probably know most of them."
I should probably make sure no one touches it. Last thing we need is for all our work to get undone because of one touchy chronomancer.
If nothing else, I can hire one of these groups to act as guards until the experts from Canterlot make it out here.
[Last 50 Posts]
Hearing stories not just about your successes, but about the preparations in between-adventures made this group's day. With several other groups stationed nearby, guarding this self-made tomb wasn't difficult. A small processing unit from the Provincial capital teleported in, haphazardly touched the materials to everyone's horror, and concluded that there were no life signs coming from Star Whisper here. The trip home, like any trip this far from the border, is quiet. Peaceful, glowing myconids standing as tall as your leg dot the wilderness. The day after is a sore affair made easier with magic, seeing that Carrot Juice's friends have time to wisen up upon listening in on Silver Lane's heroic deeds against the "Whispering Star," informing lumber yards and cleanup employment of damage done, and undoing all the wards with a clear mind.
After this things were quiet again, and a week later a familiar bonnet-wearing pony knocks politely on your door.