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/q/ - Quest

ADVENTURE!
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File: 1543373855118.jpeg (152.35 KB, 1280x692, zKDE6Ilw.jpeg)

 No.705176[Last 50 Posts]

Post your sheets!

 No.705177

File: 1543374085900.png (53.89 KB, 400x535, FANMADE_Applejack_Sit_Vect….png)

>>705176
https://pastebin.com/FQ49rcHe
Present and accounted for

 No.705178

File: 1543374773609.gif (1.5 MB, 322x275, wadamelon.gif)


 No.705179

File: 1543375154350.png (131.47 KB, 616x595, I did this in 10 mins kill….PNG)


 No.705180


 No.705181

Is this good?

 No.705182

>>705177
forgot my name

 No.705183


 No.705184

File: 1543375670294.jpg (796.07 KB, 1600x1075, example 1.jpg)

>>705183
>>705177
>>705178
>>705179
>>705180

The crisp breeze, warmed by the morning sun, chases away the fatigue that this long ride across the sea has built up. You ride aboard the Generous Fates, a trader ship bound for the small island nation of Albion. You are travelling to Albion because of a recent job opportunity – and an opportunity of a lifetime at that. Some weeks ago, you received an invitation from a wizard named Philemon.

You'd heard the stories about his prowess as a mage. He is highly accomplished in many disciplines including alchemy, divination, elemancy, even the conjuring and taming of spirits; many rumors also surround his abilities, some which claim that he can even grant wishes or bring back the dead – even his most skeptical detractors put some stock into these stories. His reputation for generosity and his great prowess as a mage means that this opportunity could grant you just about anything you could dream of. You were well aware of this beforehand, so when he wrote you and asked you to come to his estate in Albion for a job, you took the opportunity.

The Generous Fates finally reaches the shores of Albion, coming in to dock at a small port town, one with a thoroughly rustic and antique feel, populated by old buildings that have stood the test of time. The town is surrounded by grassy hills, and beyond that, tall mountains fill up the landscape, dotted with wide swaths of deep green pine trees.

When the captain calls for all travelers to disembark, many guards wearing the Albion crest of arms on their armor approach the ship. They accost those disembarking the ship, demanding to see their passports before they can enter the town. You and the other sailors are forced to show your passports in order to enter the town, but once the guards see that you are who you claim to be, you are let go without any real trouble (apart from their being rather rude).

You spend a little time in the town getting your bearings; Philemon inclued instructions in his letter, giving you directions to his estate, which is on a high hill just northeast of this port town that you've arrived at. Thus, one by one, you take an old dirt path out of the town, and follow it in the direction of the estate.

It soon occurs to you that you're all walking along the same road. You recognize one another from your boat ride, but you never got a chance to introduce yourselves to one another. Now seems to be a good enough time; you're clearly all bound for the same direction at least.

>If you and another player decide OOC that you knew each other prior to this, that's cool too.


Begin.

 No.705185

Hey I don't think I ever introduced myself properly, the name's Jesse

 No.705186

I give a little wave to kilroy from behind the group

 No.705187

>>705186
What brings ya to this place? Cause frankly noone is gonna sit on that boat for no reason

 No.705188

>>705186
>>705184
During the boat ride all Little Sword had done was stare at his coin purse, totally dejected and cursing now and then beneath quiet breathes.

He now follows the dirt path up, having only eaten loafs of bread for the past 3 days the hollow hunger pangs in his stomach reduce him to a bad mood.

>>705185
>>705186
Little Sword just looks in your guys direction, kinda stink-ishly. Not having the energy to endure a conversation but just enough to be annoyed by one taking place.

 No.705189

>>705184
Pippali and Sirocco are seated seated rather close by each other, being rather close friends already. The large zebra looks a little worse for wear, and seems to be trying to keep his bearings straight for most of the boat ride. He's pretty much the first person off the boat, taking a few minutes to try and get his balance back. Once he's recovered, he'll offer a bit of a wave to the other two.

>>705187
>>705185
"Ah, hello. Sorry I didn't introduce myself on the boat. Are you here for the wizard?"

 No.705190

>>705189
"Uh yeah, it's a little more complicated than that though" He seems to pause and stares off for the first part of the question then moves on.

 No.705191

>>705189 I am here, a bit curious. How about yourself?

 No.705192

>>705190
>>705191
"Much the same. My companion and I came to meet him, since we've been told he can grant powerful gifts."

 No.705193

>>705184
Sirocco is doing her best to make sure her pal doesn't throw up on the deck by offering him encouraging words and gentle shoulder rubs as they pull into the port. She hops off soon after him, and moves alongside him, sometimes hopping off the ground to flit in the air a bit.

>>705187
>>705186
"Pleasure to meet you two, I'm Sirocco. Me and my friend here are actually here for the same reason."

 No.705194

>>705192 I nod my head and pull a piece of wood from my pocket and fiddle with it in my talons.

 No.705195

>>705191
"I didn't see you get off, what are ya doin' here?"

 No.705196

>>705194
>>705195
>>705193
"And I'm Pippali."

 No.705197

>>705195 "I go from place to place, I don't think I need much reason for traveling is all." I mumble.

 No.705198

>>705195
"Perhaps you should look a bit closer next time, then, friend. He was on the boat all the way here."

Sirocco offers a little nod to the two, and flutters her wings a bit as she turns to look back up the path.

"Well, if we're all here for the same reason, should we get a move on?"

 No.705199

>>705196
"Howdy, I saw you seated next to Sirocco. You guys friends or somethin'?"

 No.705200

>>705198
"With that sun hangin' where it is I agree with ya'. How long of a trek are we talkin'?"

 No.705201

>>705189
>>705185
>>705186
>>705188
>>705193
https://youtu.be/dv95sMMEZnM

After a short walk up the hill, you come within sight of a rather beautiful yet modest manor perched at the top. A two-story, Victorian style house, it is surrounded with a thick and well-kept garden, full of flowers and the odd stone statues and water features. The estate is made from solid red brick, which is coated with flowering vines. At first glance, it certainly doesn't strike you as the type of place a wizard would occupy.

A maid is in the front garden, sprinkling birdseed out into the grass, occasionally laughing at the colorful birds that come down to peck at it. When she sees you approaching the old iron gates which surround the garden, she pulls out a set of papers from a pocket in her dress and checks them. She then trots out to the gate and greets you with a slight curtsey. "Good morning, everyone, you're just in time. Please, go right on in through the front; Master Philemon will be waiting for you in the lounge, first door on the left."

 No.705202

>>705199
"Indeed. We've been traveling together for a couple years, now."

>>705198
"Oh! I suppose so, yes."
>>705200
"Can't be too terribly long, I imagine."

 No.705203

>>705199
>>705200
Sirocco beams at the pegasus. "Oh, for sure! We've been traveling together for quite some time now. As for the trek… well, the instructions say it's not too far off, so I don't think you'll need to worry about that sun for too much longer."

 No.705204

>>705201
"Well now this place is quite fancy" he looks up and stares at it for a solid 15 seconds completely silent

 No.705205

>>705201 I nod my head and do a little run walk inside the manor.

 No.705206

>>705201
"Ah. Shorter than I'd expected, actually." the zebra says, looking around the estate for a little while to get a feel for it.

"I'd expected a wizard to, I don't know… live in a tower. That's what I'd always heard, at least. This is really fancy, though."

 No.705207

>>705201
Little Sword follows through past the gate, stumbling on a stone as he is caught admiring the garden and estate. A humble piece of upscale living perched upon the a mountain. Gives him some nostalgia for wealthy lords in their summer house out in the green field acres some miles past his home.

Little Sword zones out, before he's prodded by the maid to follow with. He can't stop staring at her butt the entire time he follows.

 No.705208

>>705205
"Tell me if ya'see anything as for me I'm gonna poke around the outside" He folds out his wings and takes flight.

 No.705209

>>705208 I attempt to ask what you meant but move on as you take flight and continue to move through the manner a bit lost.

 No.705210

>>705201
The pale blue pegasus gives the manse a curious once-over, enjoying the simple charm of the place, before turning her attention to the maid. She offers a similar curtsy in return. "Thank you, miss. The help is appreciated."

>>705206
>>705208
"Honestly, I've not seen a wizard's home yet, so I didn't know what to expect. Also, Jesse, come down here and get inside! I doubt our employer's going to be very happy if you're late to the party."
Then, with a springy trot, she follows Blueblood inside.

 No.705211

>>705209
"Come now, just inside and to the left, like she said." Siro tugs and Blue, and shows him the way to a door he walked right past.

 No.705212

>>705210
"I'm not seein' anything anyway, I'll be down in just a minute" He gently lands and walks inside

 No.705213

>>705212 I slide a bit across the floor when you tug on me, I, in the end, decide to follow you.

 No.705214

>>705213
"You know we should do a bit o' snoopin'. I doubt he'll tell us his shady business" With that he wanders away to kitchen door

 No.705215

>>705204
>>705205
>>705206
>>705207
>>705210
The manor is a wee bit cramped on the inside, as there is a plethora of high-quality furniture dotting the walls, to say nothing of the other decorations. House crests, swords, staves and shields are mounted upon the walls, while mannequins pose in various places, some wearing fancy armor, while others wear wizard's robes and the like. There are various magic apparati and grimoires on display, and you occasionally see brightly-colored lizards walking across the floors as if they owned the place. Maids follow the lizards, periodically feeding them treats.

You are directed to the lounge, a small and cozy room full of soft chairs surrounding a low table. At the head of the room, you see a pony in a dark petticoat, which has a mosaic of golden inscriptions decorating it, chewing the end of a pipe as he reads a newspaper. He's tan, with a black, short mane which is combed in a business-like manner, and a mustache.

"Ah, welcome, welcome, and thank you for being punctual. I am Philemon. Do sit and get comfortable, no need for formality, you are here for a job after all. Marigold?"

A maid appears, holding a tray of biscuits and tea, which she sets on the table before you.

 No.705216

>>705214 "Doesn't he have workers around here, that we can expect to be working in here?" I ask.

 No.705218

>>705215
Wait, not a petticoat, ignore that

 No.705219

>>705217 I am still unsure about the snooping but I nonetheless follow you.

 No.705220

>>705215
Correction, he's just wearing a generic Victorian gentleman's coat, I can't think of the term for it. It's dark and gold and all that stuff I said.

 No.705221

>>705215
Being a curious sort, Sirocco's first instinct when she sees one of the lizards is to go and give it a gentle pat as it slithers by.

Now, as she enter the room, she takes Philemon's advice, and finds the nicest chair she can find, and offers to share the spot with Pippali.
"Indeed, Sir, we're here for… well, whatever job you contacted us about. What exactly did you have in mind?"

 No.705222

>>705216
"Well we work for him don't we? I think we got full right to look around" He opens the kitchen door

 No.705223

>>705222 My curiosity stirred I peak beyond the door.

 No.705224

>>705222
You see a few maids and butlers preparing food and cleaning up in the kitchen, chit-chatting away. A few give you some odd looks as you peek in. "I think you may be lost," one of them says. "Philemon's in the lounge."

 No.705225

>> "Ahh, thank you." I say as I retract my head blushing from embarrasment.

 No.705226

>>705224
"Thank you but I ain't interested in Philemon right now. Somethin' ain't right here" He surveys the kitchen

 No.705227

oops

 No.705228

>>705215
Pippali gives the lizard a rather curious look himself, eventually turning to look over the armor and robes on the mannequins. He'll eventually take a seat by Sirocco and ask "So, what exactly is the job?"

 No.705229

>>705215
"Hoy great wizard. I don't want to be rude but I've been eating nothing but bread for the past 3 days. I feel like I'm starving to death. You have an leafy greens and vegetables?" Little Sword takes his seat.

 No.705230

He finds nothing and returns to Philemon taking the seat closest to the wizard. He gives him a good looking at while he reclines in his seat

 No.705231

>>705215 I am come in late, and sit in on the side.

 No.705232

>>705221
The lizard you pat seems to enjoy the gesture.

>>705229
>>705228
>>705225
>>705221
>>705226
Upon Little Sword's request, Marigold returns to the kitchen and brings back some greens and fruit for you all to snack on.

"Yes, let's get to business," Philemon says, folding his newspaper.

"I need you to discreetly deliver a package to the Full Bloom estate, which is on the other side of Albion, across what is approximately a two month journey by hoof; Albion is not a large country, you see.

"Upon successful delivery of the package, I will reward you with a sum of gold - 10,000 Bits, to be precise. If gold is not what you are after, I can offer you a variety of magical objects from my collection, of roughly equivalent value. Or, if you find nothing among them that strikes your interest, I am even willing to put my magical prowess as your disposal for a series of spells to satisfy whatever requests you may have. I do retain the right to veto any magical request that I find distasteful, of course.

"I have a few things to explain about the journey; logistics that you'll need to know, you see. But before I do, do you accept this job? If not, you are free to leave now."

 No.705233

>>705232
"I'm already here n got nothin' to do, I'm in"

 No.705234

>>705232 "I am used to traveling already, so I don't why not."

 No.705235

>>705232
"Oh, that sounds easy enough. Should… should we talk reward now, or later?" he asks, looking to the others curiously, before looking to Philemon again.

 No.705236

>>705232
"I'd be delighted to deliver this package for you, though, would you mind if I were to ask why you need five bodies to do this? Wouldn't just one suffice, if it's just a quiet delivery? I, by no means, am not trying to pry too much, I'm simply curious."

 No.705237

>>705235 "Didn't he say it was 10,000 bits?"

 No.705238

>>705232
"Thank you" He says quickly, Little Sword immediately begins eating, the food restoring his focus and sanity.

>10,000 Bits, to be precise.

Little Sword stops the snacking and looks up with an apple stuck in his mouth. He waits fr the wizard to finish before he says.

"That's a full year's salary. For a dilvery mission, the details of such that you aren't spilling before we say we accept the terms. Just how dangerous is this quest Maester Philemon?"

 No.705239

>>705237
"Well, he mentioned some alternatives, too. I don't care much for gold, but hashing out all the details right now might take a while."

 No.705240

>>705239 I nod my head in understanding and rest my head on my shoulder.

 No.705241

>>705236
"A compromise between subtlety and security. A lone courier is likely to be overwhelmed by monsters, but a well-guarded merchant caravan is also a juicy target for thieves. The contents are of a… personal matter and won't be of a profit, but a bandit won't know that until they've already robbed their mark."

>>705236
>>705235
>>705233
>>705234
"Good, good.

"Albion is divided into four provinces, each under the leadership of a Sage, who more or less rules as a king over their province. There's the Sage of the Sands, whose land we are in now, the Sage of the Marsh, the Sage of Storms, and the Sage of the Hearth; the Full Bloom estate is in the last Sage's land.

"Of course, the four Sages couldn't agree on the time of day if you showed them a clock, much less how to cooperatively run a country. The Sages are a jealous and petty lot; crossing between their provinces by the main roads is almost impossible these days due to sanctions that they have all passed just to spite one another, mostly in inter-province travel.

"Only licensed merchant guilds have any hope of getting past the checkpoints that divide each territory in a timely manner. And even then, they're likely to be attacked by the bandit clans and monsters that run amok in the wilderness between the provinces. Civilians get delayed by weeks or even months; foreigners like you would have to wait weeks just to hear back from the customs agents, and even then, you may just get denied.

"There is a single exception to this: The Pilgrim's Way, a road that connects all four provinces, and that has historically been kept free of legal obstructions out of respect for religious tradition. It goes through the wilderness, connects to a few major towns, but is mostly an out-of-the-way affair. By posing as pilgrims, you can circumvent the legal squabbles between the Sages and get to your destination in a timely manner.

"However, you'll also have to participate in the pilgrimage. There are several stops along the Pilgrim's Way called Stations. Each Station is believed to be the site of a miracle conducted long ago. In order to keep up the ruse that you are pilgrims, you must visit the Stations and collect a Proof from each one. That way if you are accosted by any of the Sages' guards during the journey, you can show that you are indeed doing the pilgrimage properly. Pilgrims get several legal protections, you see, and no guard is going to risk punishment over some pilgrim.

"As a show of my faith in your abilities, I have taken the liberty of procuring several licenses for you. If you are still in for the job, you have to do is sign your name on the licenses to become official pilgrims.

He hands out small rectangular bundles to each of you. They open up like passports, but only have a few sections inside, made of high-quality paper. The first page is empty apart from six squares, lined up in two rows of three columns. Below that is a spot for your signature. The other sheets have lines, presumably to act as a journal.

>>705238
"If you stay alert for monsters and bandits and know how to survive in the wilderness, only moderately. Though, foolhardiness can go a long way for making something a dangerous endeavor."

 No.705242

>>705241
"So we pose as pilgrims to deliver a thing to someone and you pay us 10,000 bits. I'm guessin' we won't have a map and I got a feelin' we're gonna kill a lot of things. When do we leave?" He says this with a smirk and fire in his eyes

 No.705243

>>705241 I nod my head and grab a passport to sign.

 No.705244

>>705241
Sirocco tilts the booklet side to side, looking the whole thing over with a close eye. It was a neat little thing, and she enjoyed its design. After reaching a satisfactory amount of looking-over, she looks for a nearby writing utensil to scribble her name down in the license.

"Should be hardly any different from the rest of my travels, considering I'm already on a pilgrimage of sorts. See the world, bring back whatever knowledge I can, and this seems to be an excellent learning opportunity. Such a road seems like it'd be well traveled by others, either posing as pilgrims like us, or by sneaks looking to follow the path and dodge the guards. Think we'll see either?"

 No.705245

>>705239
>but hashing out all the details right now might take a while."
"Oh that's mighty fine of you" Little sword rights on a piece of paper and hands it to you, "by the way you mind signing this contract, don't bother reading it we can hash out the details later."

The note reads 'the signature here indicates the zebra of name is contractually obligated to be Little Sword's farm mull and personal fool for the rest of his life."

 No.705246

>>705241
He signs the small sheet of paper somewhat recklessly

 No.705247

>>705241
Little Sword mulls it over for a bit "hmm Yeah. I'll do it. I'll do it if they do it is my exception."

 No.705248

File: 1543381432581.png (178.42 KB, 528x741, Pippali.png)

>>705241
Pippali looks the booklet and licenses over and hums a little, before nodding a little.
"Well… that seems easy enough if you've got all the pilgrim papers sorted out for us, already." He says, looking for a pen to sign the license.

>>705245
The zebra gives Little Sword a confused look, and says "Uh… hash out the reward, not the details of the job itself."

 No.705249

>>705245
Siro gently shoos the paper Little Sword is trying to pass away from her good friend.
"No need to be petty. We're all adults here."

 No.705250

>>705248
"Right, fine, sorry. I haven't eaten well in days I'm a little testy."

>>705249
"I just don't want to be traveling with retards. Is all I ask. Not going to die for a retard, not going to rely on a retard. Really, you should appreciate the service I'm providing here. Most are too shy to probe their crew at first meet."

 No.705251

>>705249
>>705248
>>705247
So we're in agreement, we'll do your job

 No.705252

>>705242
>>705243
>>705244
>>705246
>>705247
Once you've signed your licenses, Philemon nods, puffing away at his pipe. "Good, good. I'll write ahead to the customs office that oversees pilgrimages. Foreigners who wish to be pilgrims require local sponsorship, you see. Keep these licenses with you at all times; you'll use them to collect the Proofs, and ward off any guards who might try to shake you down.

"In any case, you are all set to leave. Here."

Philemon walks over to an opaque dresser nearby, and unlocks it with a spell, revealing a small traveling backpack, about the size of a housecat. He retrieves the bag and places it on the table. "This is the package. It should go without saying, but do not open it. I will know if you do.

"In any case, your next step will be to reach the first Station. It's located in the Dogeared Hills, which are northwest of here. You can either head there directly from my estate, or retrace your steps to the town and buy supplies if you need them, then head north out of the town along the path. At a certain point, you will find a signpost which will direct you to the Pilgrim's Way. However, don't expect to find too many markers to give you directions. Pilgrims are expected to carry their own weight, of course.

"That's all from me, unless you have questions. Oh, a final note: if you are ever stumped during your quest, send me a note."

He hands you a case containing a pack of paper sheets, a quill pen, an inkwell and vials of ink, and a smaller case which contains a green bit of charcoal.

"Write your message on the note and rub the charcoal on it once you're done. The note will ignite in fire and come straight to me. I will write back at my earliest convenience."

 No.705253

>>705251
"Seems so."

 No.705254

>>705250
"And you best quit talkin' like that. You outta show a little bit of respect" He gives the unicorn a really stern look

 No.705255


 No.705256

>>705252 "I am thankful for all these conveniences sir."

 No.705257

>>705252
Siro tilts her head as she gazes at the pack. "Anything fragile inside? Or… better question: What should we *not* do to this package? I don't want to accidentally jostle it and break anything, or get it damp and ruin it."

>>705250
"And you, please, show some decorum, or at least some basic courtesy. We're all together on this, after all."

 No.705258

>>705257
"You got a point, I don't wanna end up half dead just to realize the thing's broken"

 No.705259

>>705254
"HaHa! I think we'll find our respect on the road." Little Sword signs his licenses and passport, relieved his real name isn't on the license, instead his moniker Little Sword.

"Alright well.." Little Sword stands up from the couch "I'm dirt poor. See you all at the start of Pilgrim's road. Look forward to traveling and such and such."

Little Sword takes off out of the house and makes way to pilgrims road where he will wait for the rest of the party to convene.

 No.705260

>>705259
He stands up and leaves. Once getting outside the mansion he unveils his wings and flies into the air

 No.705261

>>705257
"Right, we're all together on this. Is that a death sentence or a relief. Time will tell. I'm taking my leave now."

 No.705262

I follow along with the others at a slower pace, twiddling junk in my hands.

 No.705263

>>705260
Little Sword squints at the sky, seeing you take off into the air with sudden velocity. "…show off.."

Little Sword walks down the hill

 No.705264

>>705262
"Hey you! I'm gonna need another flyer to scout the areas we venture! You wanna help?" He yells from the air

 No.705265

>>705250
"Haven't eaten? I'm sure I've got some food stashed away, if you need it." he offers

>>705252
"Huh. Magic paper, then? That's really cool." he says, stroking his chin a little as he looks it over. "I'm sure we can find our own way well enough- Sirocco here is fantastic at figuring out the best way to go and all of that."

 No.705266

>>705264 I go to fly up to you. "I believe I can do that for the group"

 No.705267

>>705265
"The wizard just fed me. Save it for when we make camp."

 No.705268

>>705266
"If you don't tell ya to watch my back then you should search the left I'll take the right. Tell me if you got a problem"

 No.705269

>>705267
>>705266
>>705265
"Alright we got a two month walk ahead of us, I say we get movin' and set up camp by nightfall" He gestures toward the path

 No.705270

>>705268 I nod my head and go on watch.

 No.705271

>>705267
The zebra shrugs a little, and chuckles "Some ponies eat a lot, but I'll save it for later."

>>705269
"Sounds like a plan. I hope everyone's got some good camping supplies."

 No.705272

>>705265
"W-Well, I have been on the road for a long while, so it's only natural.
>>705269
"And that sounds fine, just be sure to pace yourself. Take it nice and slow while we can, yeah?"

 No.705273

>>705256
"But of course; I'll be thankful for your honest work. Happy travels, but do be on the lookout for danger."

>>705257
"Worry not; I have placed a few protective wards upon the contents inside. The backpack is just one of a few buffers put in place to defend the actual package itself. You won't break it with sudden moves, impacts or falls, but you should exercise caution around fire or liquids."

He laughs grimly. "Oh, and just because it's warded, don't try to use it as a shield or a cudgel in battle. I had one previous courier try that, and, well… the point is that I've had to hire your group now."

>>705265
>>705266
>>705259
>>705264
>>705257
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zthWI1ni_0g
With all of that done, you depart from Philemon's estate, heading northwest in search of the road leading to the Dogeared Hills, and the Pilgrim's way. The vast countryside sprawls before you with tall, forest-wrapped hills, as if the earth itself was pulling upward to meet the sky. You recall hearing during your ride that Albion was a highly magical country, and that raw magic power even springs up to the surface in pools at certain places. Whether this is true or not, something in the air is invigorating, making your steps light as you travel.

Eventually, after reaching a dirt road heading north, you approach the base of a hill, which creates a fork in the road. There's a signpost at the fork, half-hidden by thick grasses and some trees. However, you can make out that the Pilgrim's Way is on the left, while the right path leads to another town.

You see that the left path leads up into some hills, with the view obscured by dense foliage. Now seems like a good time for some perception and navigation rolls to help you travel.

 No.705274

>>705270
He looks over at the griffon and gestures to the air

 No.705275

>>How do I do this, do I just say I want to roll for perception, sorry for the ooc.

 No.705276

>>705275
Yeah, whenever you're making a roll, it helps to keep track by saying what you want the roll to be for. For example,

[1d10] So-and-so tries to scout out the area

Roll #1 4 = 4

 No.705277

>>705273
"So… no fire, no water. We'll keep it somewhere safe, then." he remarks, deciding to avoid asking what happened to the last group.


While they're on the road, Pippali tries his best to keep aware of their surroundings.
>Perception: [1d10+1]

Roll #1 5 + 1 = 6

 No.705278

>>705277
"Well we got a lotta time so, who are ya? What's your story?"

 No.705279

>>705274 {1d10} I attempt to scout ahead

>>Like that?

 No.705280

>>705273
[1d10+2] The pretty pega peers ahead!

"Off to a fine start. Let's just try to head down the left path for now, and try to stick to the path so you don't lose your way." Sirocco keeps closest to Pippali, since she knows him the best.

Roll #1 8 + 2 = 10

 No.705281

>>705273
Kilroy has been looking at his sword for some time now. Whispering things to himself.

He is engrossed in a conversation with the spirit that inhabits his family sword
"What do you think of our companions."
>"Far too early to tell son."
"Last couple errands we were sent turned bad. Dumb starry eyed mercs, a dime a dozen and honestly these guys are putting off the same signs."
>"You're a WortCaster Dammit! Be it royal fools or village idiots, a WortCaster doesn't shulk'n whine over their recruits. He makes them in men."
"Yeah, alright I know what you're saying" Little Sword sighs.

Little Sword points his sword leftward to the path obscured by dense foilage.
"Do you sense anything?"
>Talent: YOU'RE'A WORTCASTER!!: Automatic, Instant, Once Per Combat; A wizened ancestor of Numbra Wortcaster posseses his family sword. Ask your sword for advice and the DM will impart a clue, secret knowledge, or a full Appraisal of the opponent's stats. If the DM can't think of anything give an autocrit to the next successful roll in battle. Can be used outside of combat for general advice with a cooldown of 3 turns.

 No.705282

>>705279
It has to be either square brackets [] or single quotation marks.
[1d10]
'1d10'
Like so

Roll #1 7 = 7 / Roll #2 6 = 6

 No.705283

>>705278
"heheh I keep forgetting to actually talk to you mercs. Ponies call me Little Sword and that's the monicker I'm sticking with. Nine months ago my parents kicked me out of home because they thought I was a useless piece of shit. And that's about it. Why are YOU here?

 No.705284

>>705282
[1d10] Roll for perception on scouting ahead

Roll #1 1 = 1

 No.705285

>>705281
"You got one pretty fine weapon right there. And as for me that's a different story" he shifts his gaze from the sword to the road ahead with that last comment

 No.705286

>>705278
"I'm Pipalli. I'm from the zebralands, which is a good ways from here. I'm traveling in search of a better weapon, or an improvement on the one I've already got- I intend to slay a monster."

 No.705287

>>705281
Take note for newfriends, that my skill is automatic which is why I do not need to roll

 No.705288

>>705286
"I've killed my fair share of monsters, not all of em non pony"

 No.705289

>>705285
"Its -uh- just for looking. No touch."

 No.705290

>>705289
"You never touch another man's weapon, usually ends up with someone dead" He looks to the unicorn with a soft expression

 No.705291

>>705286
>>705288
"I'd like to own some land some day, a couple farms. Be a lord and such build my name on this sword I have. The bounty from this quest is going to amount an excelent start for my capital. Though honestly, I've been thinking about maybe asking the wizard for one of his maiden's hoof in marriage after we finish our quest."

 No.705292

>>705278
"Like I told the wizard, I'm on a pilgrimage of my own. I was sent out about five years ago now to go out and accumulate knowledge of the outside world before returning. After I bring back all that, I'm not quite sure what I'll do. Perhaps just continue my travels." Siro flits around her friend, sometimes landing on his back to rest as he trots along. She rolls her eyes at… whatever Little Sword is doing, and just adjusts the needles in her bun a tad.

 No.705293

>>705291
"Well we got one might fine reward and two months to think of our choice. Just don't make the wrong one now, son"

 No.705294

>>705290
"Very wise of you to say." Little Sword sheathes his sword "Maybe this quest won't be the death of me after all."

 No.705295

>>705288
"That's what I've done, mostly. I haven't found the weapon I sought yet, but Sirocco's been kind enough to offer her help."

>>705291
"That definitely is something to ask for, I suppose."

 No.705296

>>705292
"It's always good to fight alongside someone, but there's one thing you should know. Never stop your travels until you know for sure it's what you should do" He tips his hat to the Pegasus

 No.705297

>>705293
"Those maids are beautiful, courteous, probably lived their lives on fine manners. And they prepare food pleasant to senses. Any one of them would make a good wife. It's more than that though, I would also be securing a connection to the wizard. Such a valuable source of knowledge and wealth as a relative would be quite the boon."

 No.705298

>>705297
"Tough decisions are a game, and you gotta know what pieces to move"

 No.705299

>>705281
You get a certain odd feeling about the future; it's the kind of nagging obligation that someone gets when someone does them a favor without having been asked for it, that kind of instinct toward reciprocity that all social creatures have, which can always be a source of easy manipulation.

>>705277
>>705280
>>705284
>>705285
You keep a sharp eye out on your hike, with Sirocco and Pippali dilligently pointing out spots where you might slip or fall, or where tree branches and rocks look loose. With this careful guidance, you make an easy headway through the hill, and are accompanied by a soft and varied assortment of sounds: The swirling of the breeze through the trees, the birds chirping out their songs, the crunch of branches and stones at your hooves, and so on. The road elevates along with the hills, leading you up along the side of one of the mountains you saw when you first disembarked from the Generous Fates

Suddenly, your ears pick up on a high-pitched whistling, coming from just behind you.

[1d5]
1. Jesse Blackbriar
2. Little Sword
3. Pippali
4. Soft Talon
5. Sirocco

Roll #1 3 = 3

 No.705300

>>705295
"Please, don't mention it. I should be the one thanking you for dragging me along!" She chuffs in amusement, touching down right beside him and fussing with his mane as she does.

>>705296
"You're right. That's why I said I'm not quite sure. Haven't made up my mind and all, considering that my return's still a few years off."

 No.705301

>>705295
A bad feeling jolts into the back of your mind at the sound of the whistling. Something's about to happen, but you don't know what, but your survival instinct shouts at you to move!

 No.705302

>>705299
He turns on the spot and faces the whistling

 No.705303

>>705299 I curse in my head from what I can perceive as danger.

 No.705304

>>705300
>>705299
>>705301
Pippali is about to ruffle the mare's mane in response, before freezing up at the odd feeling. Trusting on his racial instincts, the zebra tries to zig-zag dodge out of the way!
>Dodge I guess? [1d10]

Roll #1 3 = 3

 No.705305

Right, if this goes wrong I want Little sword and the Zebra to my right and left, the rest of you stick together

 No.705307

>>705302
>>705303
>>705304
>>705305
>>705300
>>705306
Pippali is nailed in the back of the head by a flurry of spiky seed pods and rocks, which end up digging into his hair and the skin on the back of his neck, giving him quite the headache and a ringing in his ear.
>Pippali loses 3 Hits

After this, the rest of you turn to see a group of rather ugly monsters standing on some of the rocks of the cliff face to your right and behind you: about three feet tall, they are like a hybrid of goblins and beetles, with big buglike heads, and chitin over their bipedal bodies. They carry crude weapons, mostly clubs with rocks poking through them, and slings made of cloth, loaded with seed pods and rocks. They chatter away, grunting and snarling, beating their chests while hopping around in place. There are six of them in this group.

For a brief explanation of combat, read on.
Combat starts with the DM posting the enemy's actions and their rolls for the turn. The players then post their actions and rolls in response. The DM then responds and resolves all the consequences from the rolls in that post, and then posts the enemy's actions and rolls.
Generally, failing a roll results in damage to your character based on how severe the failure is. Succeeding your attacks deals damage to the enemies, with more damage being dealt based on how good your roll is.
Also, you can only take one normal action and one instant action per turn. Instant actions are tagged as such in the rules document, while everything else would be considered a normal action.
For the sake of time, try to post your skill's description when you use it so I can reference it when writing the post. Just copy paste from the rules document.

In this scenario, the monsters aren't attacking this turn. This won't be the norm, but now is your chance to act anyway.

 No.705308

>>705304
Little Sword turns around and holds onto the hilt of his sword which sits in his sheath.
He assumes a combative stance.

>STANCES: Passive; Switching stance is an Instant Automatic action.

>Stance of the Tiger: You cannot benefit from weapon tags, but gain +1 to all normal attacks

>SHARPEN: Once per combat, give one ally (or self) +1 to their weapon for the duration of the battle

[1d10] on self

Roll #1 7 = 7

 No.705309

>>705308
Succeeds (since this was your action last turn, you can make a normal action and instant one for the first turn of combat).

 No.705310

>>705307
Jesse draws his weapon and fires
[1d10]

Roll #1 6 = 6

 No.705311

>>705307 I draw my own weapon and fire
[1d10]

Roll #1 4 = 4

 No.705312

>>705307
Little Sword picks the largest monster of the group and side steps into close-quarters. And inch before touch it's body, Little Sword uses his range to fight inside the creature's defenses.

In one motion Little Sword unsheathes his sword with digging slice through the monster's torso.
[1d10+2]

Roll #1 9 + 2 = 11

 No.705313

>>705312
>>705307
Oh yeah
>Also, exiting Tiger Stance now. Switching to being Stanceless

 No.705314

>>705307
Pippali shouts a little as he's beaned across the back of his head by a bunch of fruit, before whirling around and springing into action with his weighted guantlet!
>Dynamic Duo: Swirling Sirocco
>Slam: [1d10] (DC-1 due to Single Weapon, crits on 9+)

Roll #1 1 = 1

 No.705315

>>705307
Sirocco is going to first choose Pippali as her target for dynamic Duo, and then use supersonic to dash right into the center of the group, looking to knock down as many of the creatures as possible. [1d10]

>Supersonic; once per combat, ranged; You dash in a massive burst of speed to ram into any target and deal damage. On DC8 the shockwave from your sonicboom renders all nearby foes helpless. More powerful foes are immune to this effect.


>Dynamic Duo: At the start of combat, pick one ally. When that ally successfully hits an enemy, your next attack at the same enemy becomes Instant.


Roll #1 5 = 5

 No.705316

>>705314
>>705312
>>705311
>>705310
One of the monsters hooks its club under Pippali's leg, throwing him off-balance, while another leaps in from the side and thwacks him on the back of the head with his own spiked club, knocking him for a loop. Just as the monsters get this victory, Little Sword steps in and handily slays the first one with a powerful slash. The others don't seem perturbed by this loss, and in fact hoot and laugh at the death.

>Pippali loses 5 Hits and 1 wound, helpless


Soft Talon and Blackbriar pepper the goblins with attacks, but only score a few hits on one of them before the monsters retaliate back with a hail of lobbed rocks and seed pods, which mostly hit Soft Talon.

>Soft Talon loses 2 Hits


Sirocco tries to bowl the monsters over, but the trees and rocks leave her with little room to build up speed, and they interrupt her by hitting her with their clubs.

>Sirocco loses 1 Hit


>In the future, if your attack only affects one of the enemies, specify which one you want to hit.


The monsters regroup and charge at your party, bellowing and swinging their clubs with wild glee and bloodlust.

>Beetle Monster A dead

>Beetle Monster B attacks Little Sword [1d10]
>Beetle Monster C attacks Sirocco [1d10]
>Beetle Monster D attacks Blackbriar [1d10]
>Beetle Monster E attacks Pippali [1d10]
>Beetle Monster F attacks Soft Talon [1d10]

Roll #1 3 = 3 / Roll #2 9 = 9 / Roll #3 6 = 6 / Roll #4 4 = 4 / Roll #5 2 = 2

 No.705317

>>705316
>Reflex Shot: recharge 1, requires ranged weapon; Deals double damage as well as suffers double counterattack damage.

 No.705318

>>705316
Jesse uses his trained talent on Beetle Monster E

Jesse takes a turn to focus on an enemy, then deals 1d4+5 damage to them the turn after that. Recharge 3. Effect is canceled and put on cooldown if Jesse is knocked helpless before it triggers.

[1d4+5]

Roll #1 4 + 5 = 9

 No.705319

>>705316
The zebra hisses a little as he's thwacked across the head again, stumbling across the ground. If possible, he'll pick himself up
>[1d10] recover

Roll #1 4 = 4

 No.705320

>>705316
My sword is tagged dual and great, therefore much assrape shall be incurred.

In Little Sword's next motion he flourishes his sword stabbing a monster behind him, his next swing slashes a monster beside him, in two steps he slashes the other two ending his flowing motion of sword dancing.

>Dual Cleaveing all 5 of the monsters

[1d10+1]
[1d10+1]

Roll #1 8 + 1 = 9 / Roll #2 10 + 1 = 11

 No.705321

>>705316
>Reflex Shot: recharge 1, requires ranged weapon; Deals double damage as well as suffers double counterattack damage.

[1d10]

Roll #1 7 = 7

 No.705322

>>705316
Sirocco will face the monster that's attempting to whack her, and attempt to counterattack with a solid hit to the creature's head.

>Punch Creature C [1d10]


Roll #1 7 = 7

 No.705323

>>705318
>>705319
>>705320
>>705321
>>705322
Sirocco and Soft Talon are quick to act, felling the monsters charging at them with a quick barrage of retaliatory strikes and shots. Little Sword slices and dices two of the remaining monsters, and just as the last one tries to creep up on him from behind, Blackbriar blasts it with his six-shooter, killing it before it can sneak-attack Little Sword.

With that, you've defeated the pack of weird goblin-like creatures. A quick look over them shows they have little of value upon them - no gold, nor useful weapons. Still, you survived with relative ease in what was the first of likely many battles to come.

>paused

 No.705324

>>705323 I fall backwards after the battle, hitting the hard ground. "Ouch" is my only response.

 No.705325

>>705323
He slowly walks over to the bodies and stares at them, his right hoof shakes violently

 No.705765

Post sheets

 No.705766


 No.705767


 No.705768


 No.705769


 No.705770

>Pippali 5/4
>Soft Talon 3/5
>Sirocco 4/5

Last time on The Pilgrim's Way…

The party set off on their journey across Albion to deliver a package, addressed to the Full Bloom estate, on behalf of the great wizard, Philemon. To do this expediently amid Albion's political turmoils and trouble with bandits, the party followed Philemon's advice and looked for a highway called the Pilgrim's Way, a trail through the wilderness which connects the four provinces of Albion.

Along their trek, they were attacked by squat, ugly-looking monsters, looking like a hybrid between beetles and goblins. They dispatched the monsters without much trouble, and were able to continue their journey, the last we saw them.

>>705766
>>705767
>>705768
>>705769
With the monsters slain, you're given a moment to breathe and survey your surroundings. The trail is leading up a rocky cliffside, not too high or narrow just yet. Thick trees surround you to the left and right, filling the air with the scent of pine. The sun is just beyond its zenith, indicating it's a little past noon.

>Make navigation rolls when ready to move on

 No.705771

>>705770
"That wasn't so bad. Would not want to be caught along with six of those buggers though." Little sheaths his sword and gets back on the trail.

[1d10] navigation

Roll #1 9 = 9

 No.705772

>>705770
Pippali hope up fromn his back and shakes himself off, before offering a bit of a nod in agreement with Little Sword.

>>705771
"At least we know how they act now, I suppose."
>Navigation [1d10]

Roll #1 7 = 7

 No.705773

>>705770
He stands over the bodies completely silent and his gun falls to the dirt

 No.705774

>>705770
Sirocco quickly moves to help Pippali up after she finishes decking the creature in the face. She gently brushes him off, and checks him over for any serious injuries, before giving him a gentle pat on the back. "Goodness, Pip, you had me worried for a second. Glad to see that everyone's okay, though! We should probably get a move on before any more of these nasties show their mugs."

[1d10+2] navigation

Roll #1 7 + 2 = 9

 No.705776


 No.705777

>>705770
"I guess we should get going" he says in a grave voice and picks up his gun
[1d10] navigation

Roll #1 8 = 8

 No.705778

>Reminder to put on your characters' names.

>>705775

>>705771
>>705772
>>705774
>>705773
As you trek along, the trail along the mountainside gradually becomes more narrow, hugging the grassy cliffs quite tightly at some points, forcing you to slow and cross it in single file lest you risk falling.

Sirocco and Little Sword are also quick to spot places in the trail where the path is unstable and liable to drop away should anyone step on it. With their guidance, you are able to progress without any slips or falls down the ravine below you.

Eventually, you reach a fork in the road, where the trail diverges to the northwest and to the east-southeast. There doesn't seem to be any signposts nearby indicating which way you should go, and to make things worse, you are starting to feel peckish from all the hiking you've done so far.

Roll for perception/navigation, whichever gets you a better bonus (or would be appropriate for your character).

 No.705779

>>705778
He takes flight and looks along the paths
[1d10+3]

Roll #1 7 + 3 = 10

 No.705780

"I will try to look around" I tell killroy.
[1d10]

Roll #1 5 = 5

 No.705781

>>705778
>>705779
Little Sword waits for Jesse's reconnaisance.
"Hay! How's it look up there!?" He calls down from below.

>>705772
"Hay, you still have some food on you? All this hikings gotten me a tad hungry."

 No.705782

>>705780
"Be fast son, we don't got all day" He replies and continues to look

>>705781
"Well I definitely see something" He shouts

 No.705783

>>705778
>Use skill survival, do I roll for this?

 No.705784

>>705778
Pippali maintains the best footing (hoofing?) he can, with Little Sword and Sirocco's guidance. He'll try and keep his eyes peeled for any good signs of where to go.
>Perception: [1d10+1]

>>705781
"Hmm? Yeah, I still do. We might want to take a chance to forage soon too- best to keep topped off on supplies."

Roll #1 4 + 1 = 5

 No.705785

>>705778
Sirocco takes flight as well, and uses her considerable height advantage to flap around and seek out the proper way forwards. While in the air, she makes sure to do a little loop around Jesse with a smile on her face, before continuing on.

[1d10+2] navigation

Roll #1 4 + 2 = 6

 No.705786

>>705785
>>705779
>>705780
It seems that the trail leading to the northwest eventually leads to a small outpost, as you can see the very tips of the rooftops just barely peeking through the treeline. It seems to be only a few hours away, and you should make it by nightfall.

As for the trail leading east-southeast, you can't get a good glimpse of where it leads, as the trees and foliage grow thicker in that direction, obscuring your view. However, you see that a great rocky outcropping eventually arises from amid the trees, and it's safe to assume that that branch of the trail leads to that outcropping.

>>705784
>>705781
Though you aren't able to see much due to the thickness of the pine forest around you, you do notice that the trees around here are greatly battered, full of dents and spots where the bark is missing. Many plants also seem to have been damaged in a similar fashion. It's far more common on the side of the east-southeast trail than it is on the side of the northbound trail.

 No.705787

>>705786
"I say we head towards that outpost, there's bound to be somethin'" He says as he lands and looks down the path

 No.705788

>>705786
"I think it is best to go northwest, to the outpost like Jesse suggest," I tell the group coming back from my search.

 No.705789

>>705786
>>705787
Sirocco lightly taps Jesse's back with a hoof, before setting down right next to him. "Well, yes, but is it the right way? I feel like those tokens we're supposed to be gathering on the path won't be found in outposts, and we'll need to grab all we can if we're going to keep up the disguise."

 No.705790

>>705789
"Think about this, nobody puts an outpost in the middle of nowhere unless they're watching or guardin' somethin'. That means there's probably a town further down that path" he advised with a stern look

 No.705791

>>705790
"Remember, the wizard said they'd be checking our little booklets to make sure we're really pilgrims. I'd bet my tail that that's what the outpost is for."

 No.705792

I sit back to listen.

 No.705793

>>705786
>>705789
"It looks like if we go south, we'll probably be in for some sort of fight, but… I don't know if the outpost'll have what we need."

 No.705794

>>705784
"Uhh forage?" He says like the idea is completely foreign to him.

>>705786
>>705787
"I like outpost" Little, flings his sword out of his sheath in the outposts's direction "let's go."

 No.705795

>>705794
>>705793
>>705792
>>705791
"Well I say we head out before we waste anymore daylight." He instructs and marches down the path with the outpost

 No.705796

>>705795
"Just, please don't go too far from the group." I mumble.

 No.705797

>>705794
>>705795
"If you think that's best, then yes, we should head on out." Siro remarks as she starts to follow Jesse. She brushes Pippali with one of her wings as she passes, motioning for him to come along. "Though, if they ask about who we are, we should try and get more information about where these tokens are."

 No.705798

>>705797
"Missy c'mere I got a question for ya" He gestures

 No.705799

>>705798
Siro hops up next to Jesse and tilts her head towards him. "Hm? What is it?"

 No.705800

>>705797
>>705796
>>705795
>>705794
>>705793
Having reached a consensus, you head down the northwestern path. After an hour of travel, a chilly breeze picks up, whistling through the trees and lightly refreshing you after your hike thus far. You keep your eyes peeled for monsters and the like, but apart from the occasional squirrel darting along tree branches, or birds chasing one another, it's a peaceful walk. After a few more hours following this trail, the sun droops in the sky and colors the landscape a warm orange. Yet, it's quite cold out, and you can even see the faintest fog of your breath in the air.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Dwa-81884m8

You eventually reach the outpost, and see on closer inspection that, with just a few more buildings, it could very well be a small village. There are a few homes here and there, some shops and tradesponies' houses. A cobblestone road connects everything, and in the distance, you hear a creek puttering along. You're now quite famished and cold by the time you arrive, but your eyes are caught by a hostel on the eastern end of the outpost, in which you can hear some music and talking. There is a "Help Wanted" sign on the window, but "Wanted" is crossed out, and replaced with "Desperately needed please anyone I'm serious I'll pay you."

 No.705801

>>705800
"Well that's one peculiar sign." Jesse observed and flicked his hoof toward it

 No.705802

>>705800
"I feel things are only going to get interesting and more peculiar as time goes on." I say to no one in particular.

 No.705803

>>705802
"Well if that ain't an adventure then I don't know what is" He says and strides over to the door opening it

 No.705804

>>705800
Little Sword, with his sword taps on the window the Poster is posted on. "That's what I call convenient. Didn't have money for a meal or lodging."
>>"Nightmare's Raze! Son! Sheath your sword at once." The spirit in Little's sword scolds him for tapping a window with his blade.

"Eh, sorry." Little Sword walks into the Hostel. "Saw the poster! For a free meal now, I'll help ya with your problem."

 No.705805

>>705800
"Well… I guess we should see what he needs, then." the zebra says, shrugging a little bit as he follows the unicorn inside.

He'll head up to the desk inside along with the rest of the group, asking "Is there something we can help with? And, have any food, by chance?"

 No.705806

>>705801
>>705803
Siro is no stranger to cold weather and bad hiking conditions, but that doesn't mean she enjoys it any more than your average pegasus. She just knows how to tolerate it better. Her eyes wander to the wanted sign as well, curious about what the person could so desperately need.

"Very peculiar, but what was your question?" Sirocco asks, prodding Jesse in the side as she stands alongside him.

 No.705807

>>705806
"I saw you flyin' around me with that smile. And you've only just met me. So my question is, Do you got somethin' to tell me?" He whispered

 No.705808

>>705800
I follow the group into the bar without much celebration

 No.705809

>>705807
Sirocco puts a hoof over her mouth in an attempt to hide her grin and her little giggle. It doesn't work. "Pff, I-I'm sorry, Mister, but I think you've got the wrong idea. I was just being friendly. If you couldn't tell from my traveling partner…" She motions to the zebra, Pippali. "I've already got somepony."

She gives Jesse a playful tap on the shoulder and a wink before bouncing into the bar with the rest.

 No.705810

>>705809
"Good, now anyone feelin' like showin' yourself or are we gonna have to look?" He cries into the room

 No.705811

>>705806
>>705805
>>705804
>>705803
>>705802
You enter the hostel, finding it to be a cozy affair: a two-story building with quite a few guest rooms, all communal, further back. The first floor doubles as a lounge and an eatery, as you see quite a few ponies of various shapes and sizes sitting and discussing things over fresh, hot plates of food, generously piled high.

After heading up to the main desk, you see a harried-looking middle aged mare checking over the ledger. "Nothing's free; food and lodging for the night runs 20 Bits per person."

She looks up from the ledger and sizes you all up. "Hmph. Foreigners, huh? Oh bollocks, what more harm could it do? You folks look like you can handle yourselves in a fight, at least. I need someone to take care of a pest infestation that's been keeping pilgrims from getting to the local shrine and getting their first Proof. People have been getting attacked by packs of these wild little goblin beasts along the road. You'll find 'em…"

She sighs. "I should probably ask before you turn me down, but you're not going to back down now that I've told you it's about pest control, right?"

 No.705812

>>705811
"Don't prance around the issue, what're the pests we're dealin' with?" He inquires putting his hoof on the table and leaning on the counter

 No.705813

>>705812
"Didn't we all just fight some goblin beetles on the way here?" I whisper to Jesse.

 No.705814

>>705811
"We actually sorted out a problem with 6 goblins before we hit one of the mountain steeps in the area. Without much difficulty, I'd add. Dinner and a bed should be enough payment."

 No.705815

>>705811
"We might have dealt with a few of these before, actually. I'm sure dealing with more wouldn't be too troubling for us."

 No.705816

>>705813
"Well aren't you sharp, so if we're messin' with more of these guys do you think there'll be?" He asks

 No.705817

>>705811
>>705812
"Pardon me, Jesse, but she said it was some goblin things, presumably the ones we fought before." The pegasus nods towards Jesse, before turning her attention to the mare addressing them. "Seeing as how we're trying to grab ourselves a proof as well, I see no harm in helping you. Besides, those creatures were vicious, and I'd hate to hear that others are having to tangle with them."

 No.705818

>>705812
"eeeeh, she said golbins, guy."

>>705813
"Yeah, the little green guys with carapace backs."

 No.705819

>>705818
He gives the unicorn a hard and stubborn look and turns back to the shopkeep

 No.705820

>>705818
"Maybe that's what left that southern path so damaged?"

 No.705821

>>705820
"If that's the case that means they're protectin' somethin'" He proposes to the group

 No.705822

>>705813
>>705817
>>705815
>>705812
"They're called gobbeetles; an ugly name for an ugly pest. Lately, people have been getting attacked along the road south of here by roving packs of the gobbeetle hatchlings.

"While the attacks are one thing, I'm more concerned about something more fundamental. Normally, gobbeetles don't live around here. They're only found in the Land of the Marsh, which is about a week and a half's journey north of here. For the life of me, I can't figure out how or why they would have come down this far south. Still, they're here, and they're playing hell on the environment and the locals like the invasive species they are. If you can, wipe 'em all out, and try to find any evidence of how or why they got here. I've tried asking the guards, but they're only interested in things that come into town, so they're no good."

>>705814
"Wow, six of the hatchlings? I'm so impressed," the mare says dryly. "I'll serve you a free drink if you get the other forty, and the adolescent ones, AND any adults."

 No.705823

>>705818
"Do you think we can pick off forty of these things?" I question.

 No.705824

>>705822
"So these bug things invaded, and the gaurds won't help. Well missy you might be in luck seein' as we have weapons in our hands and plenty of free time" He says
"Oh and get me any cigars ya got"

>>705823
"Moderation and stealth does wonders buddy"

 No.705825

>>705822
"Hrm… well, it shouldn't be too hard to find out why. At the least, we can clear them out."

>>705821
"Maybe something else pushed them out?"

 No.705826

>>705824
"That is a pleasant thought after our last encounter." I remark.

 No.705827

>>705825
"Then we got one hell of a problem. They're awful mean and if somethin' pushed em out who knows what we're up against" He stammered

 No.705828

>>705822
"Hm, that's quite the… hive? Swarm? I'm not sure what to call a group of these things. I'm sorry that my… friends… are so pushy, but I'd be happy to assist. Do you know anything more about where they live, other than "around the southern path"? And as a final question, what exactly are we looking at for a reward?"

>>705827
"Jesse, whatever pushed them out won't be *here*. If it was, the beetles wouldn't be here, so we don't have to worry about facing whatever it is."

 No.705829

>>705828
"That's wishful thinking. Remember to always consider the down side of everything" he rasped and tipped his hat down shrouding his face

 No.705830

>>705829
"Er, no, that's logical thinking. If it was terrible enough to make them run a week and a half away, why in the world would they stay here if it was here."

 No.705831

>>705830
"That's assuming the beast didn't follow which I hope isn't the case"

 No.705832

>>705830
>>705829
"Please, let's not argue in front of our potential employer." I mumble.

 No.705833

>>705822
"My little militia can't serve a genocide for just a free drink. Guarantee us, food and board plus enough money for our next day's meals and you have yourself some mercenaries."

Bartering roll [1d10]

>>705823
"It'll take some tactics, but we dealt with 6 of their lot quite easily. If 40 goblins scare you, probably shouldn't of taken a bid on riches from a wizard too scared to deliver his own package."

Roll #1 8 = 8

 No.705834

>>705832
"Yeah you're right, we gotta job to do" he dismisses and turns back to the shopkeep

 No.705835

>>705833
I grunt and pat your head.

 No.705836

>>705833
"Maybe you should hear what she's going to offer us before trying to barter for a price?" Sirocco offers with a little shrug.

 No.705837

>>705824
"Cigars? Do I look like a merchant caravan? You'd be better off looking in Gold Gulch for those. It's a trading hub, you're always bound to find something exotic like cigars around there."

>>705833
"You've got food and board if you get the lot of them and find out why they're here. I wouldn't recommend going tonight in this chill, so you can stay here and eat. But if you don't deliver within two days, you're paying up."

>>705823
>>705824
>>705825
>>705828
As Sirocco prods for more information, the mare shakes her head. "Most folks who strayed off the road to try to find out where they're hiding didn't 't get very far before they got ambushed and driven off. However, I did some reading on the beasts. Being their natural habitat is a marsh, they stick to warm, damp areas. However, this is a cold part of the province we're in. For them not to die out, they have to have found somewhere they can survive and lay eggs, but I don't know where that would be in these parts.

"Now, there is a pilgrim staying here who says she found some clues, but she got discouraged after nobody wanted to help her take 'em out. Goes by the name of Suncatcher, and I saw her heading out to the second floor balcony with some cider a little while ago. Orange robe, white mane, can't miss her."

 No.705838

>>705837
"Thank you kindly ma'am" He says and turns away from the mare

 No.705839

>>705827
"Well, we can hope if something did do that, it didn't follow them- in fact, it'll probably just be something we bump into later."

>>705837
"A mare named Suncatcher? We'll take a look for her," he says, before thinking to himself a little.
"…Maybe they found a cave, or something?"

 No.705840

>>705837
"Hm… well, in that case, they might be hiding somewhere inside the rocky outcropping we saw. Being in there might offer some protection from the cold, though they might just be holed up in some hill…" Sirocco thinks aloud as her hoof taps at her chin. She softly shakes her head, before looking back up and dipping her head towards the mare. "Thank you, miss. We'll go ask this Suncatcher for some more info. Before we leave though, could I ask your name?"

 No.705841

>>705837
"Well I think we should talk to her before we rest up to not lose, if that all works for you guys." I ask the group.

 No.705842

>>705841
"Yeah, we gotta play this smart. An entire tribe ain't easy to take down" Warned the stallion with some fear in his voice

 No.705843

>>705835
Little Sword swats your hoof away "Don't pat me on the head, man."

>>705836
"What're you looking for a bag of diamonds? You wanna be bait for bandits, then you can do the talking next time."

>>705837
>>705838
>>705839
>>705840
>>705841
"Free meals for 2 days boys!" You guys sort out the rest. I'm helping myself to a bowl of curry." Which is what Little Sword thinks he smells in the kicthen.

Little Sword ambles to the kitchen server side and ask for whatever they're serving.

 No.705844

>>705843
I chuckle at your indignation.

 No.705845

>>705840
>>705838
>>705839
>>705841
"The name's Haggis," the hostel owner says. "I own and run this place, and I'm also in charge of the Station of the Hounds for the Pilgrim's Way. If you have any questions on where you are or what's going on lately, I'm the one to talk to. I'll send a note to our chef to make some food for you while you go talk to Suncatcher."

>>705843
Your attempt to enter the kitchen is stopped at the door by one of the chefs, his horn sparkling with magical lightning. "You can either step out of my kitchen or I can remove your ashes in a dustbin. You'll get what we serve when we serve it."

 No.705846

>>705843
"Calm down ya little spas, nobody likes a glutton" Jesse asserted

 No.705847

>>705845
"Thank you for having us at your establishment."
I tip my head forward in a little bow.

 No.705848

>>705845
"Thank you ma'am" He says sincerely and tips his hat to the mare

 No.705849

>>705845
Little Sword puts up his hooves in submission as he backs off "Alright, alright. Put down the horn. I was just looking for where to pick up a serving."

 No.705850

>>705845
"Good to meet you, I suppose. I'm Pippali. If we have any questions, we'll be sure to find you."
>>705843
Pippali chuckles slightly at Little Sword's unexpected block, before heading upstairs and looking around for the mare in particular.

 No.705851

>>705845
After snickering at the backlash Little Sword was receiving, the striped pegasus addresses the owner with as much kindness as she can. "A pleasure to meet you, Haggis." Sirocco warmly smiles, and gives the mare a bow, before turning to head on up the stairs. She stops after a single step, realizing that she forgot something. Swiveling back to face Haggis, with a silly smile spread across her muzzle, she speaks. "Before I go bother Suncatcher, I need to ask: Should we just come back to you when we're ready to bed for the night? Or is there someone else who handles that?"

 No.705852

>>705845
He walks up to the chef
"I know you're all high society but don't threaten my little friend here" he growled at the chef

 No.705853

>>705849
>>705852
The chef strides away, back to focusing on a number of different dishes and soups in the kitchen, and you get the feeling he's already putting you out of mind. "Foreigners! In my Albion! Blimey, what's the world coming to?"

>>705851
Haggis checks the ledger, then fishes around under the desk, and gives you a large brass key, marked #11. "This is yours. The rooms are communal, as this is a hostel, but each bed has a set of curtains around it. If you really don't want to be around the stallions at night, there are a few other sex-segregated rooms."

>>705847
>>705848
>>705849
>>705850
After that's all sorted out, you head up to the second floor, finding the balcony at the far end of the hall. Outside are a small congregation of ponies of various types, hanging out and enjoying life over various drinks. Most seem to be some sort of magic users, as quite a few of them are engaged in magical games and competitions, showing off various spells. It is interesting to note that few of them are unicorns; the non-magical races use grimoires and wands to perform their magic.

You spot a mare by Suncatcher's description sitting on the railing, apart from the others. She appears to be ruminating over some notes with a deep frown.

 No.705854

>>705853
"Hey missy, we heard you had some info about the goblin things 'round here. We'd appreciate it if you can tell us what ya know" he urged the monk

 No.705855

>>705853
>"Foreigners! In my Albion! Blimey, what's the world coming to?"
When he thinks no-one is around to hear he says "Well damn, I'm not taking your daughters for wives I just want to eat dinner." He sighs and mozies on up stairs to the find the rest of his crew.

He ambles over to the guys to see what they're up to and maybe participate in the conversation.

 No.705856

>>705853
>>705854
"We are a group who have heard about the trouble around these parts and that you also had some interest in taking the pest out, so any help is appreciated," I say as I join Jesse.

 No.705857

>>705853
Sirocco doesn't really mind rooming with the stallions, so she'll be fine with that, so she just thanks Haggis and heads on up the stairs to meet Suncatcher. The little displays of magic catch her eye, and she finds herself looking over at the wizards every now and then. When she is able to pull her gaze away, she greets Suncatcher with the same courtesy she always tries to show. "Hello there! Miss Suncatcher, isn't it? Haggis told us that you'd be able to held with the goblin beetles around here. What exactly have you found out so far?"

 No.705858

>>705853
"Hello! You're Miss Suncatcher, right? We came to see if you knew anything about these goblin beetles."

 No.705859

>>705854
>>705855
>>705856
>>705857
>>705858
Suncatcher's interest is clearly piqued by your introductions, but she takes a moment to size all of you up. "I hope you aren't just curious for its own sake and do plan to take them all out, but I'll go over what I know."

She rifles through her notes and then straightens them out. "It looks like these gobbeetles have found a cozy place to settle into in the tunnels below the Station of the Hounds. The Station of the Hounds is located in a cave to the southeast of here. Traditionally, this Station is the first one that pilgrims are supposed to visit as they go along the Pilgrim's Way. If you don't know, it's basically just a shrine and some mural or something.

"There are tunnels below the Station, but the local government blocked them off about ten years ago, as they are quite unsafe due to the risk of cave-ins and getting lost down there. But, that's the only place these gobbeetles could be hiding. No other place around here is damp and warm enough for their eggs to survive. To make sure, I've charted out all the known gobbeetle hatchling attacks in recent weeks, and they all seem to be in a radius of a few miles around this area, forming a rough circle with the Station at its center.

"All of this is to say is that they're in a damn cave. That's really all I know – not how many there are, or if there are adolesents and adults in there as well, or if it's just hatchlings so far. So, you still want to get in there and kill them, right?"

 No.705860

>>705859
"Yes ma'am we're going down there to kill them. And thank you for telling us what you know." He sighs slightly disappointed. Hearing her voice causes him to stare off into space with a glassy expression. His expression turns sour and he stares back at the mare.

 No.705861

>>705860
"So, when will we clean up this mess?" I ask.

 No.705862

>>705859
"Yeah, we plan on still taking the task. You get a lot of people getting cold hooves I wager?"

 No.705863

>>705861
"I'm gonna say as soon as we can. We already got a long journey ahead of us and we gotta get movin' fast." He commanded with a certain air of lost authority.

 No.705864

>>705859
"About what I thought, then: Hidden underground," Sirocco comments as she knowingly nods her head. "And no worries, we do plan on taking them out, though a good night's rest comes first. Could you tell me about what the adults and adolescents are like? We've only really seen the hatchlings, I'm afraid."

 No.705865

>>705859
"Ah, I knew it'd be a cave. No cold hooves here, too. We're more than willing to help you put an end to them, Miss Suncatcher- the sooner, the better." the zebra offers, giving her a hoof to shake.

"And, hey- maybe we can use the cave to our advantage- smoke them out with a fire, or bring the cave down on them… the second one's a little more dangerous, though."

 No.705866

>>705865
"Whatever works for all these buggers. For today we are the hired professionals to take them out!" I exclaim.

 No.705867

>>705864
>>705860
>>705862
"'Cold hooves' would imply that most of them at least had the mettle to accept it before backing down; most didn't even want anything to do with me when I first asked them for their help. Oh, on that note, I want to go with you people when you go to fight 'em; I need to visit this Station already so I can get started on my pilgrimage, and in return I'll clean, dress and mend any wounds you get. Deal?"

>>705864
"They get bigger and meaner, but not any smarter," Suncatcher explains. "But, they also get more territorial. While hatchlings will wander out and pester anyone and anything nearby, adolescents and adults will stick to their nest and guard it rather than go out and forage or pick fights. So, if we start seeing any big guys, about four to six feet tall, we should be getting close to the source. I don't know if they're susceptible to any particular substances or foods, or what their natural predators are. I've never been outside this province, to tell the truth."

>>705865
Suncatcher backs away from the hoofshake as if you had pointed a knife at her. "Fair warning, maintain a one foot radius around me at all times. Leave room for the deity of your choice, so to speak."

"To your suggestions, I say go for 'em, as long as we don't damage the Station; I need it intact. But, fighting dozens of hatchlings isn't good for anyone's health, so if we can kill 'em without a direct fight, that's a good plan in my book."

 No.705868

>>705865
"Ehhh no cave ins. Half the point is to make sure pilgrims can use the cave again."

 No.705869

>>705867
"Well I'd be honored to fight along side with ya miss. Welcome to the group I guess" He extends his hoof to the mare and has an unusual hardy smile on his face

 No.705870

>>705867
"No complaints here. I have to start on our pilgrimage as well. Around morning we should get the move on."

 No.705871

>>705870
"Little Sword I wanna talk with ya inside real quick." He gestures toward the door of the balcony

 No.705872

>>705867
"It is an adventure then our new friend." I ramble in the back of the group.

 No.705873

>>705871
Little Sword stretches and yawns and follows you inside.

 No.705874

>>705873
"As you know we're gonna be up against a lot of things tryin' to kill us. "We're gonna need a good plan so we don't die. I see how you see the numbers side of things so I want your help"

 No.705875

>>705867
>>705865
Sirocco gives Pip a consolation pat on the side, since the mare doesn't seem too keen on shaking, before responding.

"I'd be glad to have you along, Suncatcher. Having someone to dress our wounds would be much appreciated, especially if you can lead the way to the Station. At what time would you like to leave tomorrow? The walk seems long, so early morning seems best, if you want my opinion."

 No.705876

>>705867
>>705875
"One foot, got it." the zebra says, taking a decent step back. He's not sure why, but the large, bulky stallion's not one to make people uncomfortable. He gives Sirocco a friendly smile and pats her on the head before saying "Yeah- early morning sounds good, unless everyone has objections."

 No.705877

>>705873
"Any ideas on how to start this attack?"

 No.705878

>>705874
"If the majority of these things are like what we saw at the cliff steeps then we shouldn't have much of a problem just as long as we don't attract the horde. Pick at them 5-6 at a time and we'll be safe. Just as long as we stick together that is."

 No.705879

>>705877
"I don't know, stab them all to death, don't break the cave. The most I can say is just be cautious about the surroundings so we find them instead of them finding us."

 No.705880

>>705878
"We cant make too much noise, the cave'll collapse. I say we start of quiet"

 No.705881

>>705877
>>705878
"Draw them out into smaller groups, and smoke them out beforehand with fire perhaps?"

 No.705882

>>705881
"I like that but how do we know their reaction to fire"

 No.705883

>>705882
"We know they like warm damp places, not sure if we can spread a fire in that cave in the first place, nothing is ever that easy." I remark.

 No.705884

>>705883
"If it's damp it won't burn too well"

 No.705885

>>705882
>>705883
"Do you two know what "smoke out" means? It means to "smoke" something out by filling a closed space with smoke. Smoke is dangerous to breathe for anything living, so it's not an unreasonable plan, though we'll just have to see once we get there."

 No.705886

>>705883
"Fair point. We'd need to do an awful lot of work to get a fire started. It'd be good to find something to help us separate them, though."

 No.705887

"I wonder if we all would be able to fly in there?" I mumble to myself.

 No.705888

>>705881
"Well we're not going to be carrying around logs of wood and chopping trees all day to smoke the cave."

>>705881
"Nyeah, sure that would work too."

>>705880
>>705881
"Look I think you guys might be over thinking this one. We'll get a better read on tactics when we can actually see the grubby goblins. Now I'm gonna go check if supper is ready. I'll chat with you guys later."

 No.705889

>>705885
>>705886
>>705885
"As important as this is it's gettin awful dark and we need strategy as well as rest" Jesse implies

 No.705890

>>705889
"It would be nice to know what would be best to bring to fight these pest, is there any room to fly in the cave?" I ask.

 No.705891

>>705890
"I'm gonna say not, wingspan's too long"

 No.705892

>outta character real quick. I gotta get off for the night so I may leave early. Sorry about that

 No.705893

>>705888
"Yeah, fair enough." the zebra says, following after the unicorn. Supper does sound good. He'll drag along Sirocco, too!

 No.705894

>>705893
Sirocco lets herself get dragged along by the zeeb. She could use the grub herself, to be honest! Though, she makes sure that one of her wings unfurls itself and flutters in Pippali's face, just to mess with him.

 No.705895

>>705893
Jesse walks down the wooden steps and to the dining hall. He hasn't had a good meal in forever

 No.706224

Sheets.

Last time, on the Pilgrim's Way…

As night fell, the party arrived at a very small village, barely more than an outpost or rest stop. They learned from the owner of the local hostel, an older mare named Haggis, that the locals, as well as traveling pilgrims, were being ambushed by roving gangs of creatures called gobbeetles.

What was especially troubling to Haggis was that gobbeetles normally lived in the marshes to the north, and had no reason to be in the cold and hilly region around the village. She hired the party to exterminate the infestation and find some evidence of how and why they were there.

Finally, they met Suncatcher, a short-tempered mare in a wanderer's robe, who knew a little more about the gobbeetles. Importantly, she had figured out that they could only be in the caves below the first pilgrimage Station along the Pilgrim's Way, as it could be the only place damp and warm enough for their eggs to survive.

 No.706225


 No.706226

>>706224
https://pastebin.com/9Cuj90K3
Sirocco checking in! She's ready to chow down.

 No.706227


 No.706228


 No.706229

>>706225
>>706226
>>706227
As you descend the stairs back to the lobby to get your food, Suncatcher noticably keeps at least a one-foot berth away from any passerby, at times having to make weird side-steps and dodges to do so. "They're most active in the afternoons – the gobbeetles, that is – if we get going in the morning, I think we'll be just fine," she says and gets in line for her food.

The meal is on the house, as per your negotiations with Haggis. The dish of the evening is a thick stew of vegetables and spices, along with buttered bread and fresh ale, as well as fish for the meat-eaters. Though not the finest cuisine around, it is filling and chases away all the cold from the evening.

Suncatcher sits apart from the others, mulling over her notes.

>When you're ready to move on, let me know, otherwise you can RP freely

 No.706230

>>706229
He stretches in his seat "That was one might fine feast if I do say so myself"

 No.706231

>>706230
I nod my head agreement with my eye on the fish.

 No.706232

>>706231
"Fish eh? Looks too slimy to me, even if I could eat meat I wouldn't do it" He comments and tips his hat down over his face relaxing

 No.706233

>>706229
Siro happily slurps down the delicious stew, thankful to have a warm meal after the long trip.

 No.706234

>>706229
The zebra's happy to take a little bit of stew, and makes note of what Suncatcher suggests.
"Any other important bits?"

 No.706235

>>706232
I lick my chops. "I guess it is an acquired taste then friend."

 No.706236

>>706234
"Don't let them bite you; they're not poisonous, but they're prone to carrying lots of diseases and other nasty things that brew in those gross marshes they live in. If they pass 'em on to you… well, luckily for you, I can knock you unconscious during the duration of your illness. Everyone else is going to get an eyeful of some ugly symptoms on your body."

 No.706237

>>706236
Sirocco stops chewing long enough to to perk her ears and listen to what Suncatcher has to say. "G-Goodness, is it curable? That sounds… awful."

 No.706238

>>706236
"Guarantee I've seen worse" He comments gravely and takes off his hat. Running his hoof over the faded patch

 No.706239

>>706237
"Well, of course, with the right know-how and the right herbs. Fortunately for you, I have a little of both… though that shouldn't be taken as a money-back guarantee of successful healing! If it happens, just close your eyes and think of Equestria, or wherever it is you're from, and I'll have the symptoms cleared up as soon as I can."

>>706238
"I didn't realize it was a competition, but you have my sympathies nonetheless," she comments dryly.

 No.706240


-I finish swallowing a fish whole to speak-
"Are the symptoms noticeable right away?">>706239

 No.706241

>>706239
"Well, I thank you for your services. Whether we end up needing that kind of medical attention or not, I appreciate the offer. Hopefully we can wipe the floor with them before they even have the chance to hurt us!"

 No.706242

>>706236
>>706239
"Ah… noted. Thank you."

 No.706243

>>706242
"Y'know I'm real bored. Lets tell some stories or somethin' how 'bout we start with you Pip?" He suggests and points his hoof at the zebra

 No.706244

>>706240
"Depending on how bad the case is, they can appear in as little as a minute. Blotchy discolorations around the bite, engorgement of the skin, and an appearance as though the victim was severely burned.

>>706240
>>706241
>>706242
"Yeah, that bite is really disgusting stuff, and it's a good thing the people of the Land of the Marsh have the good sense to stay away from them. Whatever caused them to come this far south has to be stopped as soon as possible. Hopefully it's nothing recurring," she says with a thoughtful look. She then loses a little color in her face and her pupils shrink somewhat, as though something awful had occurred to her. She sips the last of her ale. "Well, I'll be turning in for the night. Shall we go at the first light? I think the cold will keep them in their cave."

 No.706245

>>706238
>>706236
https://pastebin.com/M2LEdD7Z
"Oh yeah, I once saw an overweight mercenary get gangrene when running a mission through Manehatten sewer lines. We were stuck in those sewers for 3 days running spy taps on an estate and making camp with our 300 pound walking yeast infection beside us. When finally emerged out a manhole the constable hacked him to pieces thinking he was a sewer zombie and the guts ran off on the two sorry bastards ahead of me on the manhole pipe."
Little Sword wagers his experience in a sport of gross out stories one upsmanship

 No.706246

>>706244
I smile and nod my head.

 No.706247

>>706244
Little Sword continues enjoying his soup and watches the fireplace all through the night.
>Ready to timeskip to morning

 No.706248

>>706245
"That's quite a story, lemme tell mine. And everyone listen up cause I don't fancy tellin' this" He says, suddenly taking on a much stronger expression.

 No.706249

>>706244
"Alright. Let's hope it isn't anything serious, I guess." he says, getting up to leave.

>>706243
Pippali smiles a little, and settles back into his seat. "Mmm? I suppose I have a story or two to share, if you have a specific topic in mind."

>Ready to skip

 No.706250

>>706244
>Ready to skip

 No.706251

>>706244
>Ready too!

 No.706252

>>706248
"This is the story of the night Jesse Blackbriar died. It was who knows how early, sun wasn't up. We were in the heat of war, and my squadron was to climb over the pass and into a valley. I overheard the commanders and whatnot discussing me in particular assuming I was asleep. Suddenly we heard sounds in the hills behind us, sounds of soldiers. We were ambushed, it was a slaughter. I tried n fight but I couldn't leave without dying. So I ran to the next encampment warning them. Instead of taking my warning I was to be executed for treason. As the enemy drew near I knew I wasn't safe. I ran and ran, I still remember the sounds of that camp getting overrun as the previous did. I hiked tirelessly through the mountains, forced to eat meat just to survive. In the end I made it here and I've been trying to, turn into a new man I guess"

 No.706253

>>706252
>ready to skip

 No.706254

>>706245
Suncatcher looks right through you as though you were just another passerby.

>>706246
>>706247
>>706249
>>706250
>>706251
After dinner and your discussions end, you turn in for the night, finding your room to be a communal one with many modest single-occupant beds, each closed off by a set of curtains around the side. A few ponies are there already, but pay you no mind. Suncatcher wishes you all a restful night and heads off to her own room. Eventually, you are able to get to sleep, aided by the long day's journey thus far.


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EaOi6ew6BmE



The first rays of the dawn flit in through the window, and you soon wake, feeling a bit stiff and cold from the beds not being all that great – though it is only a hostel. You hear a few people chit-chatting in the lobby, and smell a good bit of fresh black coffee being brewed.

 No.706255

>>706252
"I ate jerky before. Wasn't that bad. All animals need protein some way I guess." Little Sword drinks from his cup "Mm. Also That wasn't a gross story at all so I win."

>>706254
>sLeepingTims
Little Sword passes out on a sofa chair in the lobby with a comic book in his lap.
>Very very ready for morning time

 No.706256

>>706254
Siro stretches herself out as she crawls out of bed, and gives her wings a little ruffle. She gives Pippali a gentle pat on the face to wake him up.

 No.706257

>>706254
I stumble out with bleary eyes and a stagger in my step.

 No.706258

>>706254
He rolls out of bed but as soon as hooves hit the ground he seems energetic as ever

 No.706259

>>706254
>>706256
Pippali lets out a soft snort when she pats his face, rolling over and hopping to all fours. He gathers up his gear and heads downstairs to meet the others.

 No.706260

>>706258
>>706257
>>706256
>>706255
>>706259
After going downstairs, you find most of the hostel's occupants going about their business, getting early starts on the day as they eat, pac their bags, and talk about where they'll go ext. A good amount of them glance at you, and you hear snippets of conversations about the gobbeetles; it seems that word has gotten around about you taking on that job, and people are a little hopeful about your success.

You find Suncatcher as she waves you to an open table, where some light breakfast (a fruit platter and some muffins) awaits you. She's a little jittery, and slams back the last of a mug of coffee. "Ah, good morning, everyone. Just getting ready for today, and I hope my vivid descriptions of bite infections last night didn't deter you."

 No.706261

>>706260
"Not at all, but while laying down for the night
I am wondering, do these pest taste more like bug meat or goblin meat?" I tap my chin in thought.

 No.706262

>>706260
"Mmm, I slept fine enough. I've done plenty of monster hunting, so unusual infections isn't too jarring." he responds, settling into one of the seats and getting a bit of coffee for himself.

 No.706263

>>706260
"Don't worry, I'm still eager to to help! Ready to head on out right away?"

 No.706264

>>706260
He says nothing and sits down, helping himself to some coffee

 No.706265

>>706260
Little Sword picks up a muffin and immediately begins stuffing his face. "Nope."

 No.706266

>>706261
"Th… that is not something I would expect the average person to have on their minds at this time of day," Suncatcher admits. "You know what, if you can grab one you want to try, I'll make a fire for you to cook… I'll pass on any leftovers you end up with."

>>706262
>>706263
>>706264
>>706261
>>706265
"I'm a bit of a nervous eater, so I've already had my share, and then some," Suncatcher says. "Once you're all done, we'll hit the trail. I don't expect too much danger out there thanks to the cold, but we should keep an eye out for those roving gangs nonetheless. I'll be out on the porch."

She shotguns the last of her coffee, sets down the mug and practically vibrates her way out the hostel's door into the morning light.

 No.706267

>>706266
I smile with the thought in mind. "Thank you very much!"

 No.706268

>>706266
Jesse strolls out onto the porch and leans against it, hat covering his face

 No.706269

>>706266
"I didn't know we could get more than one serving -fuck" Little Sword pockets a muffin for later and grabs a second to eat after he finishes his first.

He takes a look at suncatcher and pops the muffin out of his mouth "I read coffee increases stress." Is all he helpfully intones before eating again.
He follows the party along whenever their ready to set off.

 No.706270

>>706266
Siro just watches curiously as Suncatcher vibrates out of the building. She sticks by her friend, but if he's ready to leave, then so is she. All her things are packed away, and her stomach is full of a hearty breakfast.

 No.706271

>>706266
Pippali is more than happy to take a few muffins for himself, along with a good deal of fruit. He looks at the mare with a bit of concern before going back to his meal.

 No.706272

>>706269
"I get the opposite problem when I don't drink coffee," Suncatcher retorts. "I can quit anytime I want to, and all that jazz."

>>706267
>>706268
>>706269
>>706270
>>706271
You have your breakfast, and it's aggressively decent, neither great nor bad, like somewhat-cold ice cream on a somewhat-hot day. Now ready, you head out after Suncatcher, who has since stopped jittering so much from the coffee, and wraps her cloak and robe around her. She walks with a traveling staff, and you see heavy saddlebags around her waist, which she seems to carry with no problem. She pulls up her hood for warmth and gives a somewhat forced smile as you come out. "All set? Let's be off then."

You head south along the dirt road out of town, and after a little while, you see the fork in the road ahead, the one where you had stopped the day before. To the east (your left, as you are currently heading south) you see the other dirt road, its end obscured by rocks, trees and the slopes and curves of the hilly area. You also see markings in the trees, rocks and bushes, presumably territorial marks made by gobbeetle hatchlings.

Suncatcher shivers and ties her cloak tighter. "After you, I'm no fighter."

>roll perception / navigation

 No.706273

>>706272
Jesse walks slightly and gives the path a good hard look "Alright everyone, you know the drill! Eyes ahead and look for trouble!" he calls, his voice sounding slightly hoarse

 No.706274

>>706272
"Of course. Allow me to lead the way, miss." Sirocco dips her head politely as she steps past, towards the front of the little train.

[1d10+2] navigation

Roll #1 6 + 2 = 8

 No.706275

>>706273
[1d10+2]

Roll #1 3 + 2 = 5

 No.706276

I go forward and scout the area ahead.
Survival: spot check rolls +3. Can create and forage for basic supplies like rope, bandages, tents, torches and low-quality meals. Can see far into the distance and can see if dim or night light.
[1d10+3]perception

Roll #1 6 + 3 = 9

 No.706277

>>706276
"I expect a full report of what ya see!"

 No.706278

>>706272
>I'm no fighter."
"Then what the hell are you doing with us? No wonder you're so stressed."

Little Sword goes on ahead following the markings. He leads himself by the sight of goblin markings
[1d10] perception roll.

Roll #1 3 = 3

 No.706279

>>706278
"Hey!" He calls in a durst tone. He looks at the unicorn for a second and scowls then turns back to the path

 No.706280

>>706278
"She's with us… because she needs help? I mean, if she can't fight, I'd be a thousand times more concerned if she was headed out on her own."

 No.706281

>>706272
>Perception [1d10+1]

"Right, right. We'll keep you safe, no worries."

Roll #1 10 + 1 = 11

 No.706282

>>706279
>>706280
"Right, Right, she's our sherpa to the goblin caves. Should've handed over the map and stayed in town. You know if she dies I'm not going to feel good saying I told ya so."

 No.706283

>>706282
"Please learn to show other ponies respect. It's getting really old really fast, my friend."

 No.706284

>>706278
"I'm a pilgrim, you peabrain. You at least researched where the Stations were before you undertook the pilgrimage, didn't you? I need to visit the Station in the cave to continue my journey, and so do you."

>>706278
>>706276
>>706274
>>706273
>>706281
Although the path ahead is winding and somewhat confusing, splitting and curving around at many points around natural obstacles like massive boulders, masses of trees each as wide as a house, and ponds, you manage to navigate over the hills and through the woods and keep a general sense of where you are and where you've been.

At a few points, Pippali and Soft Talon spot crude traps in the dim light of the morning, simple snare and net traps that look to have been constructed by the gobbeetles. But thanks to their guidance, nobody is caught in one.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6Bz3wBuRpEQ

After an hour or so of journeying, you reach the mouth of the cave, a rather small opening in a cliffside. Unlit torch sconces dot the walls leading in, leaving it as dark as pitch past the reach of the sunlight. There is no sound coming from within, and the faintest hint of a foul scent reaches you as you near it. Suncatcher clicks her tongue in disatisfaction at the state of the cave. "This should be treated as a holy place, not a damn nest."

 No.706285

>>706284
"Temple or not, we're going in and wipe these beetles off the face of the earth" He growls

 No.706286

>>706284
"Oh yeah, yeah that's right. It's funny how forgot about that. Still doesn't explain why you don't just wait out the pest control. What? Don't think we can hack this one."

>>706284
"Anyone got a light? for the torches.."

 No.706287

>>706284
"Hopefully it can return to being that, as soon as we clean it out."
>>706286
"Yeah, I've got some. Give me just a minute…" the zebra says, searching around in his travel pack.

 No.706288

>>706284
"It really is a shame… But, look on the bright side, we'll have this place back to it's old shape in no time!"

>>706286
"And she told you about how these things could infect you in minutes, and she knows how to help with the healing, and you're… still asking why she didn't wait?"

 No.706289

>>706288
"Yeah, really! For her own personal interest. Look at her, about to piss her breaches. And it's not a days passage to get back to town. Any substantial marks these goblin mooks can deal would be treated within the day. Having someone with us who can't fight is just an item of annoyance with me, seeing how the responsibility to protect her is spontaneously footed to any of us during a fight."

 No.706290

>>706289
"Will you shut up for one damn second?" Jesse fumes

 No.706291

>>706286
"The one group of people who actually have the gumption to take this extermination job are up against forty or more monsters who can make their bite victims debilitatively ill in as little as a minute… and I can heal illnesses and injuries. You're right, it'd have been a better idea to stay in the village until I'm old and gray while your party dies."

>>706288
"You vetted this guy before you joined up with him, right?" Suncatcher whispers to you, with a subtle gesture at Little Sword. "It seems like he's got an incurable anti-social personality."

>>706285
>>706286
>>706287
>>706288
Scrounging together your resources, you manage to get some torches going, providing a good source of light and warmth for you as you proceed into the cave. The pathway narrows as you enter the cave, forcing you to enter in lines of two.

Eventually, the cave's path dips, and leads you further down into the earth. Shortly after, the path splits in a few ways. The center path leads ahead to a large shrine, where you see an offeratory basin before a great mural sprawling across an entire wall, although you can't make out the inscriptions from here.

At the point where you are, there are three other pathways. It looks like they used to be cordoned off, as there is a long chain laying at the base of each of the other paths, with a plaque saying that the path isn't safe for pilgrims. There are two of these other paths to your left and one to your right. They aren't distinguishable at first glance, so make a sensing roll for more info.

 No.706292

>>706289
"By all means, leave us and dash in, then. You don't have to worry about looking out for anyone that way. Or you could just leave and go home. Quite frankly, I don't care either way. You've been nothing but an abrasive annoyance ever since I first saw you. Now, either pony up, or ship out."
>>706291
"And sadly, no, he was forced along with us. He's just like this." Siro whispers back, and sadly shakes her head.

 No.706293

>>706291
[1d10] Pegasense

Roll #1 8 = 8

 No.706294

>>706291
"Sirocco, tell me what ya see. I want Little Sword with me in case there's an ambush. All of ya look for anything and report back."

 No.706295

>>706291
>You're right, it'd have been a better idea to stay in the village until I'm old and gray while your party dies."
"Damn straight! That's what any sensible person would do. Oh mare of little faith."

>>706291
>>706292
>Now, either pony up, or ship out."
Little Sword really just can't resist a challenge like that.
"You know what. Fuck you, I will!"

Little Sword charges forward into the rightward forked path.
The Spirit in Little Sword's short sword intones some wisdom to Little Sword.
>"Stupid, Abrasive, Gluttonous. You are all these things you challenged fool. Praise my daughters and sons you are not a coward too.
>YOU'RE'A WORTCASTER!!: Automatic, Instant, Once Per Combat; A wizened ancestor of Numbra Wortcaster posseses his family sword. Ask your sword for advice and the DM will impart a clue, secret knowledge, or a full Appraisal of the opponent's stats. If the DM can't think of anything give an autocrit to the next successful roll in battle. Can be used outside of combat for general advice with a cooldown of 3 turns.
[automatic] To not get surprise attacked.

>SHARPEN: Once per combat, give one ally (or self) +1 to their weapon for the duration of the battle

[1d10] to self

Roll #1 8 = 8

 No.706296

>>706291
I sit and stare forward into the cave before us

 No.706297

>>706291
>[1d10] extra sensory sense
"At least this area seems clear of traps, but I wouldn't count on it staying that way for long."

>>706295
"Or, there won't be, after he sets any of them he bumps into off."

Roll #1 8 = 8

 No.706298

>>706292
"Meh, maybe he'll find some class or any other redeeming quality out on the road," Suncatcher mutters.

>>706293
>>706296
>>706297
>>706294
Sirocco and Pip are the first to notice the trembling heat coming from the second left path. It comes in a series of waves, one after the other, resonating as if in some form of communal response to one another, like synchronized breathing. You catch a faint hint of fresh air coming down from that way as well, suggesting some kind of opening further within. You don't feel the same from the first left path.

>>706295
You rush down the rightmost path, and only too late do you pick up on some musty, half-rotted scent of some kind of infected carcass, pooling near the ground. You hear a rumbling above you, and see a collection of loose rocks piled up along the roof of the tunnel, propper up deliberately poorly by sticks and wood planks. The planks and the sticks wobble and come loose, but you are able to get out of the way before the come down on you. However, they block off the path you came down from.

 No.706299

>>706298
>(ooc, I gotta get off for the night. Sorry dudes. See ya later)

 No.706300

>>706298
Little Sword looks over his shoulder behind him just after the crashing sounds of rubble closing off the way back
"…" He lets out a sharp whistle, the kind you do either when your impressed by something or have severely fucked up

"Well.. At least if I die, I won't die a puss that went back on his word."
>"hm.. I share that sentiment." The sword intones.

Little Sword lights up his horn with a little magic and carefully tiptoes across the corpses. Leading with his sword as he walks down the dark corridor.

 No.706301

>>706295
>>706298

Sirocco just pitifully shakes her head as she watches Little Sword dash off. The tumbling rocks hardly even make her flinch. She turns to the others and shrugs. "So… feel like clearing out all those boulders, or should we go ahead and try to find a way around? My vote's on the second, since we're likely to get ambushed if we stay here."

She gestures towards the hot path, where she could at least sense something. "This direction seems like it'll turn up something useful."

 No.706302

>>706300
"Don't try to be a hero now," I call to you.

 No.706303

>>706298
>>706301
"Let's go around- if we do meet up with him, we'll know a safe route back out here, right?"

 No.706304

>>706301
>>706302
>>706299
>>706303
You head down the path indicated by Sirocco, finding the warmth gradually increasing as you head along. It's a pleasant sense, almost lulling, and you find yourselves having to snap to attention now and again to keep from getting pulled back into early-morning drowsiness.

Eventually, you hear a skittering in the darkness ahead, and see a small, four-legged figure moving in the shadows ahead, with a strange gimp in its pace. You can't tell what it is, but it doesn't seem to be one of the gobbeetles.

>>706300
The dark cavern's air churns and trembles slightly, nearly unnoticable, the light shimmerings of a heat haze on a sun-blasted day. You feel the light thrilling in the air of some kind of magic, present enough that even those with no magic training or ability can apprehend it. The shadows on the walls seem like faces in the peripheries of your vision, vanishing as you look at them. The path then widens as you head along, leaving you without a wall to follow.

Eventually, you come across a great dent in the ground, seeing the remains of some kind of smashed treasure chest in the center, with a fragment of something glinting amid the rubble.

>Paused

 No.706841

Sheets!

 No.706842


 No.706843

Last time on The Pilgrim's Way…

The party reached the first pilgrimage station they would need to visit in order to complete their quest, a cave in the hills which held a shrine and mural known as the Station of the Hounds. However, before they would visit the station, they needed to drive out or kill all the gobbeetles that had taken up residence in the cave, as said monsters had been attacking local travelers and pilgrims.

Following an argument with the party, Little Sword split off from them, and a sudden premonition of danger, sent by his family's weapon, saved him from being crushed under a rock trap in one of the tunnels. The rocks sealed the way that he had just come down, cutting him off from the others.

>>706842
The dark cavern's air churns and trembles slightly, nearly unnoticable, the light shimmerings of a heat haze on a sun-blasted day. You feel the light thrilling in the air of some kind of magic, present enough that even those with no magic training or ability can apprehend it. The shadows on the walls seem like faces in the peripheries of your vision, vanishing as you look at them. The path then widens as you head along, leaving you without a wall to follow.

Eventually, you come across a great dent in the ground, seeing the remains of some kind of smashed treasure chest in the center, with a fragment of something glinting amid the rubble.

 No.706844

>>706843
Little Sword stops in his tracks, looking down at the chest amid the rubbled pit.

"Heh.. hahahaha. Noooo." Little Sword exhales a derisive negatory choosing to walking around the gash in the ground and continue forward, horn hit and sword extended forward.

Little Sword suddenly becomes extra conscious about his surrounds and the weight of his sword.
>SHARPEN: Once per combat, give one ally (or self) +1 to their weapon for the duration of the battle
[1d10]

Roll #1 4 = 4

 No.706846

>>706844
As your focus flits to your sword, something shuffles in the darkness ahead: a tall shape, four times your size, hulking and stooped in the small tunnels, though you cannot see it well in the darkness with just the light of your torch. As you continue along, the shape raises its broad head, and two pairs of slit eyes open, faintly shining as a cat's does in the dark.

 No.706847


 No.706848


 No.706849

>>706846
Little Sword stops in his tracks again. Touching his shortsword to the ground and leaning on it with both hooves.

"Ahah, I now see the Master of the cave" Little Sword assumes a professional demeanor as he addresses the large Goblin "I come neither for treasure nor glory, but to succeed you in honorable combat! I challenge you Great Goblin, to a game of a tic-tac-toe."

Little Sword draws a cross hatch on the ground for a game of tic-tac-toe. "Your move.."
Little Sword is sweating bullets.
[1d10] Persuasion roll

Roll #1 7 = 7

 No.706851

>>706850
I nod my head and get to moving.

 No.706852

>>706849
In the shadows, a chilly blue light begins to glow, in the shape of an etched rune, dangling from the creature's neck. The creature shuffles into the light, and you see it is a large gobbeetle, its carapace tough and scarred. An assortment of rune-covered charms dot its body in a haphazard manner, as if they were not put on by the beast itself but thrown on by someone else.

The monster shuffles forward and jabs at you with a spiked club, the end of which drips a venemous-looking blue substance.

[1d10+2]

Roll #1 10 + 2 = 12

 No.706853

>>706843
>>706849
>>706851
"Blue come with me, the rest of you I want in a strong formation of defense and get ready for an attack. Holler if ya hear anything and we'll head back. Got that?" He commands and stomps down the path Little Sword went

 No.706854

>>706853
I come behind Jesse to follow them in line

 No.706855

>>706852
>That crit
[on the 10% chance I roll a crit too, here I go]

[1d10] to dodge

Roll #1 10 = 10

 No.706856


 No.706858

>>706852
>>706855
>YOU'RE'A WORTCASTER!!: Automatic, Instant, Once Per Combat; A wizened ancestor of Numbra Wortcaster posseses his family sword. Ask your sword for advice and the DM will impart a clue, secret knowledge, or a full Appraisal of the opponent's stats. If the DM can't think of anything give an autocrit to the next successful roll in battle. Can be used outside of combat for general advice with a cooldown of 3 turns.
[activate] Tell me about dem runes

 No.706859

>Last post of the previous game
>>706856
>Pippali
You head down the path indicated by Sirocco, finding the warmth gradually increasing as you head along. It's a pleasant sense, almost lulling, and you find yourselves having to snap to attention now and again to keep from getting pulled back into early-morning drowsiness.

Eventually, you hear a skittering in the darkness ahead, and see a small, four-legged figure moving in the shadows ahead, with a strange gimp in its pace. You can't tell what it is, but it doesn't seem to be one of the gobbeetles.

>>706853
>>706851
You trace the path that Little Sword took, but find that the tunnel he went down is completely blocked off by a plethora of heavy boulders, through which you can see no light nor hear any noise.

>>706858
The runes appear to be the work of some kind of druid, as the magic bound to the rune is attuned strongly to the environment, though the sword knows nothing about who created it, or why. It appears to be accelerating this monster's growth, giving it greater strength.

You dodge the creature's strike at just the last moment, but it is hardly slowed, and crawls forward on all fours, screeching lowly as it shoves the poisoned club at you again.

[1d10+2]

Roll #1 9 + 2 = 11

 No.706860

>>706859
"Dammit!" He yells and slams his hoof on the rock in frustration. He turns to blue breathing heavily and looking quite angry. "We have to go back" He sighs and stomps off towards the group

 No.706861

>>706859
The warmth makes Siro's fur puff up a little as she gets kinda cozy, but she does her best to keep her focus.

Upon seeing the shadow, Sirocco keeps a good distance, and watches the creature carefully. If it makes no hostile moves, she'll attempt to approach it slowly and carefully.

 No.706863

>>706859
The singing edge of gear pierces Little Sword's mind as he sees he only narrowly dodge the goblettle's club.

>"Don't you ever challenge someone to a game of Tic-Tac-Toe, again." Little Sword's sword admonishes.

Little Sword crouches down and pounces forward releasing many quick pinpoint stabs of his sword onto the small runes that adorn the Goblin's body.
>Dual Great Cleave 6 runs
[1d10+1]
[1d10+1]

Roll #1 4 + 1 = 5 / Roll #2 1 + 1 = 2

 No.706864

>>706863
>edge of gear
Of fear!
holy shit sorry, I'm a bit dumb today

 No.706865

>>706859
Pippali continues wordlessly, trying to keep himself as aware as possible. The sooner they find Little Sword, the better. He also instinctively pulls Sirocco a little closer to his side, just for safety.

 No.706866

>>706865
The two come back to the original group without Little Sword. Jesse stomps there and glares at the ground

 No.706867

>>706859
Doubting that there isn't more here I search around the collapsed entrance.
Survival: spot check rolls +3. Can create and forage for basic supplies like rope, bandages, tents, torches and low-quality meals. Can see far into the distance and can see if dim or night light.
[1d10+3]

Roll #1 9 + 3 = 12

 No.706868

>>706865
>>706861
>>706860
The creature is a small lizard, about a foot long, with a red body, an elongated neck, and stony scales, which bunch up at various points on its body, creating a look very reminiscent of bits of cooled lava after the eruption of a volcano. The lizard hesitates as it sees you, and you see that it's got fresh injuries which look like the markings the gobbeetles left on the landscape.

Suncatcher gasps in pity as the lizard comes into view, and digs into her bag, in which you see a collection of rune-etched stones. But the lizard appears wary and eyes you all as potential predators.

>>706863
>Double Critfail, poisoned weapon

Your stabs clash with the creature's club, parrying a few of its blows, but as you spy an opening, you advance, in an attempt to knock away its runes of power. Yet, the gobbeetle is quicker than anticipated, and slams its club into your side, knocking the wind out of you. Ribs snap, and blood flows from your side. The monster then picks you up and slams you into the ground. Lights blink above you, spiraling and sparking.

>Little Sword 0/2

 No.706869

>>706868
Jesse gives the lizard a stern stare and looks into its eyes. He doesn't draw his weapon, just looking at the hurt and small lizard

 No.706870

>>706868
>"Get up! Get up! Boy!"
The telepathic cries from his Sword are the only thing coming out clear right now. Little Sword lays his back to the ground, immersed in pain.

He forces himself to get up
[1d10] get up from helpless

Roll #1 7 = 7

 No.706871

>>706870
You get back up, and the creature scoots away, reaching for something in the dark. You see its right hand hook around a heavy, rough cloth bag, large enough to hold several people inside. The beast drags it slowly closer, surveying you with a ravenous hunter's eye.

 No.706872

>>706868
"Be careful, now. This is going to take a gentle approach…" the stallion says, taking a soft step back. The last thing he wants to do is crowd the critter.

 No.706874

>>706868
"Listen, I won't hurt ya' just tell me what happened and I promise we'll help" He reassures and etches closer to the creature

 No.706875

>>706874
[1d10]

Roll #1 10 = 10

 No.706877

>>706867
You find no way of getting around, below or through the boulders. On the other end, you hear a muffled thud, and then nothing else.

 No.706878

>>706868
Sirocco eyes the stone Suncatcher pulls out with curiousity, but she doesn't say anything. She just takes a small step back and gives her some space.

 No.706879

>>706871
>"This is no place for a grave son. Take your and drive it into your foe's heart. Sing the bloody song of the Wortcaster line!"

Little Sword readies himself for the terrifying stunt his about to try.
>auto, Instant takes effect next round
>Stance of the Tiger: You cannot benefit from weapon tags, but gain +2 to all normal attacks

He sprints toward the Goblin keeping his head and body leaned low. Once he closes in Little Sword dives forward, jumping high to pierce into the Goblin's biggest rune
[1d10+1] one attack to stab the big rune
[1d10+1] and this one to tear the big rune out
>dual

Roll #1 7 + 1 = 8 / Roll #2 3 + 1 = 4

 No.706880

>>706877
Failing to find anything I return to the group with Jesse

 No.706881

>>706879
forgot Stance of the tiger is only +1 in this version of femto

 No.706882

>>706880
>>706875
>>706874
>>706872
>>706878
The lizard allows Jesse to get close to it, apparently sensing that he has no ill intention. Suncatcher levitates one of her runestones out toward Jesse. "Here, put that on the creature, if it'll let you. It'll fix him right up. I'd get closer, but I've never seen a lizard like that – you get to be the first test subject just in case it has a tendency to bite people's heads off."

>>706879
You jam your sword into the rune, but the creature recoils before you can yank it off the necklace which is tied around its neck. The adult gobbeetle skitters forward, grabbing at you with long, unwashed claws.

[1d10+2]

Roll #1 4 + 2 = 6

 No.706883

>>706882
Jesse takes the rune and slowly but steadily puts it on the lizard
[1d10]

Roll #1 4 = 4

 No.706884

>>706882
His sword stuck into the Rune necklace Little Sword hangs on it's leverage to walk a step up it's chest as the goblin's claws grab and he kicks off pulling the rune out with him and jumping away from the goblin's grasp.
[1d10+2] jump away yanking the necklace off

Roll #1 10 + 2 = 12

 No.706886

>>706884
You yank the large rune, necklace and all, from the creature's neck, and a great deal of the magic presence goes with it. But, there are still several other runes on the creature's body. It grabs you as you try to jump away, and slams you against the nearby stone wall.

[1d10+1]

Roll #1 2 + 1 = 3

 No.706887

>>706886
>"AYE! There's your Courage!"
Little Sword ducks and sidesteps low to slash the goblin's Ankle

[1d10+2]

Little Sword then switches to being Stanceless
[activate]

Roll #1 8 + 2 = 10

 No.706889

>>706887
You worm your way out of its grasp, then tuck and roll across the ground to regain your distance from the monster. You strike true, slicing deeply into the gobbeetle's ankle, and it stumbles as blood gushes from the wound. Yet, the creature is quick to retaliate, swinging its poisoned club at you again.

[1d10+1]

A distant skittering can be heard, from the shadows beyond…

Roll #1 10 + 1 = 11

 No.706890

>>706883
You nearly fumble and drop it, but set the rune upon the lizard, and you see its wounds rapidly heal. The rune's magic creates a time-lapse of the body's natural healing processes, and the lizard's damaged flesh scabs over and then regrows in record time.

The lizard perks up once the rune falls off him, and then turns and starts walking down the tunnel. It pauses and looks back at you, as if expecting you to follow.

 No.706891

>>706890
I follow the lizard hesitantly and instruct the party to do the same. "Lets hope we can get to Little Sword before he ends up dead"

 No.706892

>>706889
[Jesus christ please let it be a crit]

In only a second does Little Sword see the club coming, he tries to jump it
[1d10] dodge

Roll #1 5 = 5

 No.706893

>>706890
Sirocco cheerfully waves a wing at the lizard, and quickly follows after. She was confident that little sword was probably fine. It'd only been a few minutes, after all!

 No.706894

>>706891
I in doubt of myself follow Jesse.

 No.706895

>>706882
>>706890
Seeing no reason not to, the stallion follows after the lizard.

 No.706897

>>706893
>>706894
>>706895
As the path stretches his breathing increases in speed and his eyes widen in fear. Something is unsettling him deeply

 No.706898

>>706897
The pegasus monk adopts a defensive stance as she stares ahead of the lizard, looking for movement in the dark.

 No.706899

>>706897
Pippali tightens the straps on his guantlet, and hurries along after the lizard.

 No.706900

>>706893
>>706895
>>706891
>>706894
You follow after the lizard, and it leads you down several winding tunnels, which split and fork at various points. Still, the lizard never slows or stops, leading you along with a sense of urgency in its quick steps.

The tunnels grow wider, and warmer, as you follow deeper into the cave network, and there's a faint scent of some kind of plant in the air, all of which contributes to a slight drowsiness. Yet, a sense of danger, held aloft by instinct, keeps you alert.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l0p2k5eSJUU

The tunnel ends at an overhang, opening out to a cavern extending below you. You see plenty of gobbeetles, at least 30 in number, lounging in dark pits carved at the bottom of the cavern, the bottom of which is about fifteen feet below you. Thick moss grows about everywhere, and a pool of water, smelling of sulfur, lays at the center. You see that the gobbeetles have set up all kinds of egg pods in the pits. In the broken pods, the gobbeetles sleep, presumably not bound to wake up til much later due to the cold.

In addition, there are several more of the red lizards in the cavern. They look injured and beaten, clearly abused, their mouths held shut by muzzles, and there are stakes in the ground where they are bound by collars and leashes. Suncatcher seethes at the sight, grinding her teeth. "We've got the initiative… any plans?"

 No.706902

>>706892
You leap, nearly clearing the club, but the bottommost part of your ankle is caught by the swing. Time seems to slow as the force breaks your leg, and sends you in a spiraling tumble through the air. The beast swings back the other way, and sinks its club right into your side, crushing you against the wall. The ichor melds with your blood, soaking into your crushed skin and bones. Consciousness wavers, and darkness bites at the edges of your vision…

>Little Sword 1/1


The gobbeetle stands above you, clacking its mandibles. It slowly sets the club aside as it reaches for the bag once again.

 No.706903

>>706900
"I doubt it is reasonable to charge in." I mumble to myself.

 No.706904

>>706900
Correction for clarity:

There are stakes in the ground, to which the lizards are bound by collars and leashes.

 No.706905

>>706900
"I-if Little Sword is down there t-then we need to make it through them, somehow. H-here's what we'll do. Blue, Sicorro, and Me will release these lizards. T-they should attack the beetles" He suggests with a very unusual stutter and fast breathing.

 No.706906

>>706905
I pull Jesse close to me. "Lets not wake this swarm up, and let us ask our guest suncatcher."

 No.706907

>>706902
I'm not dead, I think- I can move. then I can fight

These are Little Sword's thoughts as he picks up his Sword and against severe pain and fatigue he sprints toward the giant gobeetle while it's back is turned

Screaming "AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!" Little Sword leaps forward and drives his sword into the top of the Gobeelte's spine.
>dual
[1d10+1] Stabbing into his spin
[1d10+1] And dragging the blade down the spine

Roll #1 10 + 1 = 11 / Roll #2 3 + 1 = 4

 No.706908

>>706905
"I'm not sure… they seem a little worn down. Do you have any more of those healing things, Suncatcher? We might be able to heal them up before we strike."

 No.706909

>>706900
>>706905
"They're injured- letting them all loose to try and get them to fight with us would just lead to them getting killed. We should merely take the advantage we have on the Gobbeetles."

 No.706910

>>706908
>>706909
"Do you s-suggest we sneak past?" He asks and swallows hard. His right hoof shaking quite a lot

 No.706911

>>706910
"Yes."

 No.706912

>>706910
"We were hired to get rid of them, so sneaking past might not exactly help with that. Though… that water smells like sulfur, so perhaps we could set it alight?"

 No.706913

>>706907
Seizing the last opportunity, you manage to jam the sword into the monster's back and the joint of where two of the carapace shells meet. The monster pauses, blood dripping everywhere, and for a moment, a calm hangs in the air.

But then it shudders and flings you to the side, tossing you to the ground. It then turns, and raises its large hand, then slowly presses it into you, pushing all pats of your upper half in on one another, bone squishing into muscle and skin. Blood leaks from myriad injuries.

>Little Sword 0/1


It waits, as if waiting to see if there is any more you have to do.


>>706906
>>706908
>>706909
>>706903
"I've got plenty of runestones – I was carving them all last night, since I couldn't sleep," Suncatcher says. She looks around the cavern. "Uhh, since they're dependent on warmth, we could sneak past them no problem, even if we made a bit of noise in the process…"

She looks up at the ceiling, and you see that there is an opening leading outside. Some of the rocks up there look somewhat loose. "Maybe if we could knock those down, we could cause a cave in… might be a better option as a last resort if we have to escape in a jiffy."

Flipping through her notes again, she pauses on a page. "Hmm… they're a hierarchical species. If we can find and kill the biggest one, the lesser ones should scatter. They're only confident if they're in a hive built around a 'head honcho' gobbeetle. Kill the leader and they lose their nerve. These ones don't look very big or leader-like. They must all be hatchlings… I'd bet the biggest guys are further in."

>>706912
"Yeah, good idea – there might be crystals around here we could pull out and then try to ignite to take them out!" Suncatcher adds.

 No.706914

>>706913
>>706912
"Let's find the head honcho, then- if we can deal with the leader and make the rest scatter, then we'd be safer searching for our missing stallion."

 No.706915

>>706913
"I-I Got molotovs if we wanna set the sulfur ablaze"

 No.706916

"I don't like the idea of fire with these injured reds chained all about."

 No.706917

>>706913
Sirocco nods to Suncatcher, and looks around for a crystal, to make note of, before looking for a way further in.
"The head guy seems like our best bet. Let's try sneaking further in and finding him."

 No.706918

>>706917
"Good idea, everyone we head further in and look for the big guy"

 No.706919

>>706914
>>706915
>>706916
>>706917
Looking around the immediate vicinity, Sirocco finds some sulfur crystals embedded in a slope which leads to the bottom of the cavern. On the far end of the cavern, on the right side, there is another opening, leading further into the cave system. You'll have to roll for crossing sneakily through, but it is at a DC of 4 since your foes are asleep.

"Talon's got a good point," Suncatcher says. "It'll take me some time, but should I free and heal the other lizards, maybe give us some allies?"

 No.706920

>>706913
Little Sword wiggles his arm, his arm inches a little, enough to grab his sword.

In a pained motion he tosses the sword into the Gobleetle's eye.
[1d10+1]

if it hits, he smiles spitefully ready to die.

Roll #1 10 + 1 = 11

 No.706921

>>706919
"We're not sure how much time our companion has. If it doesn't take long, then sure. But we shouldn't spend any more time here than we need to."

 No.706923

>>706919
"Sounds like a good idea. Should we wait for you or go on ahead?" Siro asks, already edging towards the other side of the cave.

 No.706924

>>706919
"Listen, at this point I'm ready to blast through hell. I say we get in further, find that chief and beat him so hard the other's couldn't identify his moderately warm corpse"

 No.706926

File: 1545201293610.jpg (20.45 KB, 480x360, you have perished.jpg)

>>706920
Your sword strikes true, embedding itself deeply into one of the Gobbeetle's four eyes. The beast howls and stumbles backward, thrashing about in a crazed frenzy, all its patience and curiosity dried up by a flash of vicious rage. It swings upward, knocking the sword out, along with the destroyed eye.

In the grips of death, you see a flash – the gobbeetle's split, insect jaw, and rows and rows of sharp, rotted glints of teeth. It lunges forward, and bites down.

You fought valiantly, but to no avail. You sink into an endless expanse of darkness, knowing nothing of what the afterlife will hold. Perhaps this is all it will ever be.

>>706921
>>706923
>>706924
"I'll just get the strongest-looking ones; there's too many for me to let all of them go. We'll have to come back for the others once we're done. Go, go and I'll be right behind you."

Suncatcher creeps down the path, using her telekinesis to undo the muzzles on the two biggest looking lizards.
[1d10+1]
[1d10] sneaking roll

>reminder to make those sneaking rolls when ready to move on


Roll #1 8 + 1 = 9 / Roll #2 2 = 2

 No.706927

>>706926
[1d10+1]
[1d10] Sneaking roll

Roll #1 2 + 1 = 3 / Roll #2 1 = 1

 No.706928

>>706926
[1d10+1]
[1d10] Sneaking Roll

Roll #1 2 + 1 = 3 / Roll #2 10 = 10

 No.706929

[1d10]

Roll #1 3 = 3

 No.706931

>>706926
[1d10+1]
[1d10] (Sneak)

Roll #1 3 + 1 = 4 / Roll #2 3 = 3

 No.706932

>>706927
>>706928
>>706929
>>706931
You creep around the nesting area while Suncatcher frees two of the lizards. However, Jesse, being a bit on edge, fails to notice the small remains of a broken eggshell before him. Just as the party nears the exit, he steps on it, resulting in a large cracking sound. Two of the gobbeetle hatchlings stir somewhat, opening their eyes and looking about in confusion. They haven't yet noticed you, and Suncatcher holds her breath in fear, not moving even an inch.

 No.706935

>>706932
He chooses his next moves very carefully
[1d10]

Roll #1 2 = 2

 No.706937

>>706932
Sirocco instantly drops down to the ground, and quickly, and quietly, jumps on the nearest awake one, and attempts to just snap its neck.

[1d10] atk
[1d10] stealth

Roll #1 8 = 8 / Roll #2 7 = 7

 No.706938

>>706932
Pippali tries to snuff out one of the two that has awoken, while Sirocco hopefully deals with the other.
>[1d10] (Single Weapon, DC-1)
>Stealth [1d10]

Roll #1 5 = 5 / Roll #2 7 = 7

 No.706940

>>706932
I follow in with Pippali's attack with my crossbow.
[1d10] (attack)
[1d10] [stealth]

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

 No.706941

>>706935
>>706937
>>706938
Sirocco, Soft Talon and Pippali quickly take out the two that woke up, keeping your cover intact. Suncatcher and the lizards quickly catch up with you, urging you deeper into the tunnel afterward so as to get away from the nest.

You proceed onward, heading deeper into the dark tunnels for a while. You lose track of time as the musty, sulfuric odors and heat addle your minds, disorienting you, yet your hooves keep moving, pushing onward with Suncatcher and the two lizards. Your torches are your only source of light, your sole comfort in this dark labyrinth.

After a while, the tunnels straighten out, and in the distance, you spy a smaller light in the darkness: a torch laying upon the ground, nearly gone out. In the shadows beyond, a hulking figure hunches, its form illuminated by ghostly runes hanging from its neck, glittering blue in the darkness.

Suncatcher cranes her neck forward to survey the area, then gulps, and takes a step back.

Next to the torch is a sword you recognize, twisted and broken into pieces, and a stain of fresh blood.

>paused

 No.707711

Post sheets and respond to >>706941

 No.707713

>>706941
https://pastebin.com/9Cuj90K3

Siro glances down at the sword, and then back up to the creature. She wasn't about to jump to conclusions, but she also wasn't about to let that thing walk away. Assuming everyone would be close enough to catch up to her, she'll use sonic boom to dash down the hall and slam into the bug. If they're not close enough, though, she'll just stick next to Pippali, who she'll choose for Dynamic Duo, and advance only when he does.

[1d10] for sonic boom, in case everyone's close enough.

Roll #1 7 = 7

 No.707714

>>706941
https://pastebin.com/UtJCKZgu
I start to look on me for any materials to set up a trap unsure about my chances on taking down such a large beast.

Trap: recharge 1; Starting next turn, first enemy to attack is helpless for 2 turns.

 No.707715

>>707714
[1d10]

Roll #1 5 = 5

 No.707716

>>706941
At the sight of the twisted and broken sword, Pippali grits his teeth. Patting Sirocco on the shoulder softly, he runs out and tries to start off with a bodyslam!
>Slam: [1d10] (Crits on 9, +1 due to Single)
>Dynamic Duo: Sirocco

Roll #1 6 = 6

 No.707717

>>707716
>>707715
>>707713
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b_WWZRRObVU
You quickly take the initiative and spring into battle. Sirocco and Pippali are the first to strike, charging in and bashing the creature on the chest. You see that the monster appears to be an adult gobbeetle, but is badly injured, with sword slash wounds in its eye and on its spine. A large rune-stone lays before it, with a broken rope going through it, looking like some kind of broken necklace.

After they attack, the creature bellows and swings at them with its free arm, but they are quick, and leap back before it can hit them. Soft Talon then finds some rope in his bag, and is able to turn it into a snare, but there is little opening to get at the monster in the small cave.

The gobbeetle snarls, clutching at its injured eye with one hand, and advances, brandishing a sinister club coated in a foul-smelling rot, and in fresh blood. Growling, it swings at Sirocco.

[1d10+1]

Roll #1 10 + 1 = 11

 No.707718

>>707717
Sirocco quickly leaps off the ground, a flap of her wings creating a confusing vortex of loose feathers as she attempts to dodge the club. (Flurry of Feathers, enemy gets a penalty to their action. In addition, Pippali's Z-Tactics should incur another penalty. And due to Dynamic Duo, Siro gets one free hit in.)

[1d10] dodge
[1d10] Dynamic Duo unarmed strike

Roll #1 3 = 3 / Roll #2 4 = 4

 No.707719

>>707717
Jesse focuses huge creature and draws his money
Jesse takes a turn to focus on an enemy, then deals 1d4+5 damage to them the turn after that. Recharge 3. Effect is canceled and put on cooldown if Jesse is knocked helpless before it triggers.
[1d4+5]

Roll #1 2 + 5 = 7

 No.707721

>>707717
While the beast is busy, I toss the snare to entrap it.

[1d10]

Roll #1 10 = 10

 No.707722

>>707717
Pippali shouts a little as he sees the Gobbeetle swing at Sirocco, moving his body in front of her to block
>Block: [1d10]
He responds with a quick, deadly jab of his own!
>Revolving Blade [1d10] (DC-1, Dynamic Duo Instant)

Roll #1 8 = 8 / Roll #2 4 = 4

 No.707723

>>707721
>>707718
>>707719
>>707722
As Jesse prepare his attack, Sirocco tries to leap to safety, but the gobbeetle's swing zooms from the darkness with horrifying speed. Pippali is quick to intervene, absorbing most of the impact, but the strike is powerful and smashes them both against the wall. The thick muck seeps into his wounds, stinging and smoldering as it's absorbed.

>Pippali 5/4

>Sirocco 5/4
>Damage was split between the two of you due to the block; damage was to Wounds instead of Hits as the weapon is poisoned.

Suncatcher hisses as they both take the grisly hit, and launches a small rune-stone at Sirocco. "Move, move!" she shouts.
[1d10+1] Heal

The gobbeetle raises its fist, set on binging it down on Sirocco's head with a furious yell, but Soft Talon launches his snare, binding the monster's arms. A counter-weight on the snare swings about through the air, bringing the arms up to its neck, causing it to stumble forward for lack of balance, where it falls to one knee.

Seeing their chance, the red lizards skuttle forward with an angry screech, and breathe fire at the captive monster.
[1d10]
[1d10]

Roll #1 2 + 1 = 3 / Roll #2 3 = 3 / Roll #3 9 = 9

 No.707725

>>707723
With the beast on one knee, Sirocco quickly steadies herself and Pippali, before moving to sweep the other leg out from under it with a swift strike! Though, she waits til the lizard's fire isn't going to hurt her.

>Striking the leg! [1d10]


Roll #1 10 = 10

 No.707726

>>707725
Jesse takes advantage of the downed lizard and fires at it
[1d10]

Roll #1 5 = 5

 No.707727

>>707723
"Agh, poisoned! Take care, everyone!" The stallion shouts, slamming it with his metal gauntlet in the chest, and following up Sirocco's leg sweep with a kick to the creature's thigh.
>Slam: [1d10] (Crits on 9)
>Dynamic Duo Instant [1d10]

Roll #1 9 = 9 / Roll #2 8 = 8

 No.707728

>>707727
(Adjusted Wounds)

 No.707729

While I have the beast vulnerable and within range, I fly up and I take a shot at it.

Reflex Shot: recharge 1, requires ranged weapon; Deals double damage as well as suffers double counterattack damage. Can be used while helpless, but on fail while helpless recharge is set to 3.

Surveyor: passive; You have keen eyes when flying on high. While flying you can give either an ally or yourself +1 to ranged attacks and skills.

[1d10+1]

Roll #1 4 + 1 = 5

 No.707731

>>707725
>>707726
>>707727
>>707729
You take the opportunity to pile onto the downed gobbeetle, scoring major wounds about its shoulders and chest as it hunkers down, ripping at the ropes that bind it, but to little avail. However, furious anger sweeps over the monster's face, and it rushes forward, even as it's tied, flailing about in a frenzy as it tries to strike out at Pippali and Sirocco again.
[1d10] Cleave, penalty due to Soft Talon's trap.

The lizards scatter, knocked back by the monster's rampage, but Suncatcher holds steadfast, throwing another rune from her bag to support Pippali this time. This stone attaches to him, glows, and then dissipates, but the rune itself remains, appearing on his skin as a magic blue glow.

>Bolster, automatic


Roll #1 9 = 9

 No.707732

>>707729
Jesse takes flight and joins the griffon giving air support
[1d10]

Roll #1 5 = 5

 No.707733

>>707731
Again, Sirocco leaps off the ground, assisted by her wings, and attempts to flip over the bug as it charges, making sure to strike its face as she dodges. (same as last time, +1 to dodge from being midair, 2 penalties from taking off and from Z tactics. Autohit from Dynamic.)

[1d10+1] Dodge
[1d10] Dynamic Duo strike

Roll #1 4 + 1 = 5 / Roll #2 8 = 8

 No.707734

Even with the beast flailing about in its tied form, I continue to take pot shots at it with my
crossbow from my place in the air.

Surveyor: passive; You have keen eyes when flying on high. While flying you can give either an ally or yourself +1 to ranged attacks and skills.

[1d10+1]>>707731

Roll #1 6 + 1 = 7

 No.707735

>>707731
Not wanting to waste any time, Pippali follows up Sirocco's jab with a savage blow of his own
>Dynamic Duo Instant: Revolving Blade [1d10] (DC-1)
>Big Slappy: [1d10] (DC-1)

Roll #1 3 = 3 / Roll #2 3 = 3

 No.707736

>>707731
Jesse fires his weapon at the gobeetle
[1d10]

Roll #1 9 = 9

 No.707738

>>707735
>>707734
>>707733
>>707736
The weakened gobbeetle is able to bash Sirocco and Pippali back, but the two stand firm in spite of their injuries, and counterattack at the first opening, scoring hits on its cracked and bloodied hide. Pippali is caught off guard when the gobbeetle strikes back, punching him into the ceiling, and he bounces off and falls to the ground with a loud crack.

>Sirocco 1/4

>Pippai 0/3

However, the strike causes the gobbeetle to stand upright, exposing the neck of its flesh to attack, and Jesse and Soft Talon take the opportunity, blasting it with their ranged weapons. The monster stumbles, blood teeming from its many wounds, and with a loud groan, falls backward, causing the ground to shake as it slowly dies.

>YOU DEFEATED


Suncatcher steadies herself, panting lightly as the adrenaline still runs through her body. She picks up a rock and lobs it at the corpse, but there is no response. "That's it… it's dead! We did it! Mostly you lot, though. Good thing it had been injured earli– oh, right…"

In the shadows behind the monster's corpse, you see another, mangled body, barely recognizable from its crushed form, but you can see that it is Little Sword.

 No.707739

>>707738
Jesse notices over to the body of Little Sword and stares heavily. "No no no no! I promised this would never happen! I vowed to keep everyone alive an I failed! Dammit dammit dammit!" He screams "I thought I was better than this" Jesse collapses to his knees and drapes his hat over his face

 No.707740

>>707738
I slowly descend to check upon the monster checking it for any telltale signs of life or
anything eye-catching.

Survival: spot check rolls +3. Can create and forage for basic supplies like rope, bandages, tents, torches and low-quality meals. Can see far into the distance and can see if dim or night light.

Surveyor: passive; You have keen eyes when flying on high. While flying you can give either an ally or yourself +1 to ranged attacks and skills.

[1d10+3+1]

 No.707741

>>707740
[1d10+4]

Roll #1 8 + 4 = 12

 No.707742

>>707738
Sirocco quickly springs to Pippali's side, and gingerly helps him to his hooves, a slightly worried look on her face. She lets him use her as support, if he needs it. She doesn't look too much at Little Sword's body.

"Jesse, stop that. It's no one's fault but his. He ran off and died, and that's that. I can't say I'll miss him, but I didn't want it to end like this."

 No.707743

>>707742
"I vowed to never let anyone under my care die again and I've failed." He looks down at the body "Every death brings me back to that forsaken pass."

 No.707745

>>707743
"Jesse, he wasn't in your care in any way, shape, or form. He was doing his own thing. Just step away." Siro sighs as she sadly shakes her head. "We'll take care of him once we clear this place out. It's too dangerous right now."

 No.707746

>>707740
You see a collection of circular stones hung about its neck, a set of four distinct necklaces. Each stone has the same rune etched into it, a collection of vertical and diagonal lines that you do not recognize, looking vague like some kind of fence.

There's also the other, broken runestone necklace, laying some distance away. It's got a different rune on it, but still looks fundamentally similar to the runes on the monster's neck.

Besides that, there's a smashed treasure chest in the center of the room, and inside, you see two bracelets that might fit on your wrists. They've both got a rune on them, distinct from the other two aforementioned runes.

>>707739
"People die," Suncatcher notes, apparently unphased.

>>707742
"It was inevitable. People like that guy act out for attention, and only serve to put others in danger. It's harsh, but we have to think about our own lives. After all, if this had gone differently, he could've brought the whole nest down on us."

She shrugs and proceeds a little further into the cavern, raising her torch. In the shadows, you see a large pile of broken cages, barely large enough to hold a collection of gobbeetles. Suncatcher leans down and inspects them.

 No.707748

>>707738
Pippali winces a little and squirms on the ground, Suncatcher's magic bringing him back on his hooves in short time. He gives Sirocco a softt smile and a pat on the shoulder, taking a few moments to steady himself and look around. He sighs upon seeing Little Sword's corpse, and bows his head a little.
"Nothing we could have done, when he went in as one. A shame, all the same."

>>707746
Pippali looks at the necklaces and bracelets, giving them a curious onceover. He looks to Suncatcher, and calls out "Thanks for the healing, by the way. Say, do you have any idea what these trinkets are? They seem to be runed…"

 No.707750

>>707746
I grab all that I can, holding onto the bracelets for when the group reaches back to the hotel. With that done I take my claws and start to peel away meat from the monster's body to eat later.

 No.707751

>>707746
"I know it was inevitable. That's why I told him to leave, but he… well, you know what happened. At least he ended up helping."
Sirocco waits until the zebra steadies herself, before making her way over to the bracelets. She gives them a curious poke, before picking one up and examining it closer. She doesn't let Talon take it. "How odd… I didn't think they'd have something like this. Magic seems a bit out of their reach."

 No.707752

>>707748
She inspects the runes as you hand them to her. "These necklaces are Rune Vessels. They might have been put on the big gobbeetle here by someone with knowledge of the Runic Art. As for why, I'm not sure… could've been trying to make him stronger? Well, must not have been much knowledge, if that's the case. They put too many Runes of the same Type on this big guy right here."

She points at the Runes. "See these? That's the Rune symbolizing Strength, so these were giving him extra power. They probably were trying to make him extra strong. Any ideas why?"

 No.707753

>>707751
>>707750
>>707748
"Examine those runes. Tell me what you find"

 No.707754

>>707751
"That is mighty rude of you." I glare.

 No.707756

>>707752
"Would there be something worth keeping ponies away from down here? Something this powerful would be a good deterrent."

>>707754
"Well, she did pick it up to examine it. Nothing wrong there."

 No.707757

>>707756
"She took it from me." I state flatly.

 No.707758

>>707753
>>707751
>>707750
"Yeah, there's no way that these were made by the gobbeetles themselves. Only the druids know how to craft and Bind Runes. So, either a druid put these on him, or someone else grabbed these Rune Vessels and put them on the gobbeetle."

She gestures at the many cages at the back of the little cavern. "Looks like we found the evidence that Haggis wanted. Someone brought the gobbeetles here and put all these Rune Vessels onto the big guy so that their power could be Bound to him."

>>707751
>>707750
In total, there are seven trinkets with runes on them: Four small necklaces, one big necklace, and the two bracelets from the treasure chest.

>>707756
"As far as I know, no, this is just some pilgrimage destination. Nothing especially significant here besides the shrine and the mural…" she starts to think, and rifles through her notes again. "Actually… I think I might have a clue, but we need to check the mural to confirm it. Let's get going."

 No.707759

>>707754
"Er… th-these aren't yours… I'm just trying to examine it."

>>707756
"Actually, hey, Pip, if these make whoever wears em stronger, the bracelets might be pretty useful! Especially since you love to punch so much." Sirocco calls out to him, waving the runed jewelry in the air as she talks.

 No.707762

>>707759
Suncatcher checks over the runes on the objects you found. "Aaaactually, hate to burst your bubble, but not all of them will do that. Here…"

She points at the four smaller necklaces. "These have the Strength Rune." Then, at the one big necklace. "This one has the Vivacity Rune. That's the one you really want, if you want to hit really hard." She then whistles as she looks at the bracelets. "These will really be handy; these both have the Luck Rune."

 No.707763

>>707758
"Everyone be ready for anything and watch eachother's back. Now move out!" After Jesse gives the command he looks back at the dead stallion one more time and turns away.

 No.707765

>>707758
"Are there any groups or individuals that don't like the pilgrimage? Perhaps they thought to sabotage it in some way, because otherwise, I'm not sure why you'd stuff a cavern full of dangerous, uncontrollable beasts."

Sirocco tilts her head as she looks at the bracelet in her hooves. "O-Oh, hm… in that case, why don't you pick first, Pippali? You saved my butt back there, so it's only fair!"

>>707763
"Whoah there, hold on. Give us just a second to rest. I know you didn't get hit, but that fight was really rough on me."

 No.707767

>>707765
"You're right I-I'm sorry." Jesse admits and lowers his head

 No.707768

>>707758
"Sure. Let us be off, then." the large zebra says, lumbering after Suncatcher.

>>707759
>>707762
"Interesting… we can sort out these later, though. We should check out this hunch of Suncatcher's, first."

>>707767
"No need to apologize- being wary isn't a bad thing, we just need a moment to recouperate."

 No.707769

>>707767
"Hey hey, no need to apologize. Just give me a second to make sure nothing's too broken, yeah?" The pegasus lightly chuckles, and flaps her wings.

She spends a few minutes looking over her own wounds and Pippali's, before finally giving the all clear signal, and letting Suncatcher lead the way back.

 No.707771

>>707768
>>707763
>>707765
As you head back out, there is a rumbling of clattering steps, and you see at the end of the tunnel, a great horde of hatchling gobbeetles rushing toward you, snarling and drooling, evidently woken by the earlier fight. However, as they see the corpse of the adult laying back in the cavern, they hiss, lowering their heads, and start backing away from you. One by one, the ones in the back start slinking away, and as their comrades up toward the center see this, they break rank as well; soon, the whole mass of them start to flee, climbing through small holes in the walls and through various other tunnels, cowering before you in acknowledgement of your victory.

With them gone, the lizards that you recruited start burning at the ropes and muzzles that the gobbeetles had put on them, and soon they are freed, and start tending to their own wounds by licking them and eating at the foliage nearby.

As you head back, Suncatcher floats her own Rune-covered stones over to you; the stones dissolve upon contact, and the Rune upon them appears briefly on your body before it too vanishes, and your injuries are healed.

================================================================

In a little while, you retract your steps and return to the first level of the cave, and proceed to the far end, where you saw the mural. As you approach, you see that the entire far wall is painted with an elaborate, tapestry-like illustration, depicting the journey of a lone, weary-looking pilgrim through the various environments of Albion. However, much of the mural has been defaced with a recent and ugly addition, written in red paint: "FOREIGNERS OUT OF ALBION!"

From the parts of the mural that you can still see, the pilgrim is a lone mare, dressed in a shabby robe and armed only with a staff and book. The mural focuses on the pilgrim bravely confronting a pack of vicious hounds that are terrorizing a town. The pilgrim raises her staff with a great yell, and magic flows forth from it. In the next scene of the mural, the hounds follow her obediently, much to the joy of the townspeople. You notice that in each scene, the pilgrim's face is blotted out with the red paint. Suncatcher scowls at the graffiti, clearly quite upset at the defacing of the mural. "Well, that certainly confirms it."

In front of the mural is a stone basin where you can leave an offering. It also has a stamp made of carved ivory, and an inkpad, presumably for marking your passports.

 No.707772

>>707769
Pippali gives Sirocco a soft nuzzle as she looks his injuries over, before ruffling her mane "I'm fine, no worries."

 No.707775

>>707771
The pegasus poises, ready to strike, as the gobbeetles greet them at the end of the tunnel, but her stance slowly softens as she notices them turning tail and fleeing. "Striking at their leader really worked, huh? Good thing, too…" Sirocco says, mostly to herself, as the party continues onwards. The sight of the lizards freeing themselves made her feel a little happier about the events that'd just transpired, and she even finds herself smiling as she watches them nibble on nearby plants.

Though, when she sees the mural, her smile quickly fades. "So, looks like I was right. Someone doesn't like this pilgrimage. But… why?"
She gazes up at the defaced painting for a good while, before shaking her head and moving to mark her passport.

 No.707776

>>707771
Jesse gives the mural a good and hard look. Then walks over to it examining the faded paint

 No.707778

>>707771
Pippali hefts his guantlet as the horde of gobbeetles approach- his somewhat tense look fading to one of relief as the group disperses upon seeing their leader dead.

===

Pippali looks the mural over and frowns, before swishing his tail a little "I suppose whoever did this one had something to do with the runes? " he suggests, taking a chance to mark his passport with the ivory stamp provided.

 No.707781

>>707778
>>707776
>>707775
Suncatcher shakes her stack of notes, which you notice is several inches thick and has incredibly tiny print covering just about every inch of each page. "This mural is depicting Saint Orare's pilgrimage across Albion! Though, at the time, she was called Abbess Orare. She was a doctor, scholar, linguist and a major leader within the Celestian cult at the time she took this pilgrimage. Apparently, there was a severe magical plague in Albion at one point, and no other member of her abbey was willing to go, out of fear of bringing the plague back to Equestria. So, Abbess Orare went across Albion by herself, healing sicknesses and even facing wild monsters, who were driven mad and even attacked walled cities because of the plague. Some historians even claimed that Orare was to thank for Albion's very survival… but I think that's a pretty big stretch."

"But that's the issue: Saint Orare was a foreigner to Albion, and because of that, Albion has been very lenient about letting people from Equestria into its land freely. I'm guessing some of the locals aren't too happy about that – that would explain why they'd bring gobbeetles out all this way, and why I've been hearing about bandit attacks on the merchant caravans in the other provinces, too. They must be targeting the Pilgrim's Way because it represents Orare, and thus represents the justification used for allowing foreigners into Albion freely. This is huge!

She clears her throat. "Well, maybe, at least."

 No.707782

>>707781
"Not sure I'd call it a huge stretch from the sound of things. Doubtless that she wasn't the ONLY reason, but I'm sure she was a huge help. Seems beyond strange that whoever this is is so dead set on trashing this place, when the rest of Albion is more or less free from foreigners, considering the issues that're going on. Also, there's something to be said of the irony of importing gobbeetles to get rid of foreigners." Siro softly chuckles a little, before shaking her wings and continuing. "Though, who are you going to show all this to? Is there some noble or official you could get assistance from? As fun as it'd be to clear the path on our own, some help would be nice."

 No.707783

>>707781
"Hrm… well, it's a better idea than anything else we could come up with. We should keep our eyes peeled for anything else that might suggest that."

>>707782
"I imagine they wouldn't hope for us to return, but… surprise." the stallion says, with a chuckle.

 No.707784

>>707782
"I'm afraid we're on our own here."

 No.707787

>>707784
>>707783
>>707782
"I guess we could, but there's some trouble with that," Suncatcher says. "The four Sages have limited authority over the Pilgrim's Way due to a technicality in the treaties they've signed regarding it. If they do too much to the route, even for something simple like assigning extra guards to make sure it's not defaced, that could be interpreted as overstepping the limits of their power to govern it. If one Sage oversteps their power, the other three could use that as a justification for more sanctions against that Sage, as punishment for abusing their authority and not respecting the treaties… everything goes arseways when it comes to Albion's government, honestly.

"Not only that, but what if the people that did this have allies among the nobles? Reporting this to too many people could get people suspicious of us. But, Haggis didn't seem like she knew what was happening here, so it sure looks like we can tell her safely. If a native like her talks to the nobles, it'd look less weird than if a bunch of foreigners like yourselves went and reported it. You'd be suspected immediately, even with the legal protections for pilgrims."

She stamps her passport. "Well, we better head out. Someone's going to have to pick up those corpses and I'm not it."

 No.707789

>>707787
"Everyone get your passport stamped. We got more ground to cover and I want camp set up by nightfall" He orders and stamps his passport

 No.707790

>>707789
"Town's barely a couple hours away," Suncatcher deadpans. "And it's still morning, last I checked. You've got your brains in sideways if you think I'm gonna sleep outside in this weather."

 No.707791

>>707790

I give out a noncommittal noise

 No.707792

>>707787
>>707790
Having already stamped his, the zebra's ready to roll.
"Returning to town will be good- gives us time to digest all of this."

 No.707794

>>707787
"Oof, yeah, I knew about all the sages, but still, I was hoping at least someone would be able to do something. Hopefully they've not messed with everything, because I'd hate to have a repeat of today. And yeah, going back seems like the best option. I'm sure Haggis'll be pleased to hear about our success."

 No.707795

>>707794
>>707792
>>707791
With your first of eight stations reached, you pack up your gear and head back out into the morning chill. Though the sun has risen over Albion, the air nips at your noses, and frost dots the ground. Random gobbeetle tracks dot the ground here and there, but they are scant, disorganized. The beasts shall pose no more threat to anyone.

You return to the inn at the small village, and find Haggis attending the front desk again. As she sees that your group has diminished by one, she frowns. "…It was that bad in there, huh? Alright, tell me what the damage was. You found some evidence for how and why they got here, right?"

 No.707797

>>707795
Sirocco keeps warm with her fluffy fur and feathers. She offers a little nod to Haggis, before replying. "The damage is pretty bad. Their broken eggs are everywhere, and the mural is defaced, but I think I'll let Suncatcher fill you in, since she seems to have a pretty firm idea about it all. A-And I wouldn't say it was that bad. He ran in, all on his own, and got separated. If he'd stayed with us, he would've been fine."

 No.707800

>>707795
"Yeah it was pretty bad but we have to keep moving. We have no idea why they have moved into the province yet but we'll find out. The mural was defaced so someone was here before. If we find anything else we'll report it."

 No.707801

>>707795
Pippali lets out a soft sigh, before shrugging and responding with "He ran in alone, and got cut off. We tried, at least. Aside from that, though, everything went well. I believe our friend may have an idea of what brought them here."

 No.707802

>>707801
>>707800
>>707797
As you give your reports, Suncatcher fills in Haggis on the cages, the Runes, what she speculated about in front of the mural, and her suspicions about who could have done this.

Haggis groans. "Druids might be at it again… don't like the sounds of it, but at the same time I can't say I'm surprised. Things have been getting rough in the port towns and the big cities, too. Tourists and merchants are getting roughed up more and more frequently; worse, local gossip has it that some guards are turning a blind eye to some of the incidents. Sometimes, they won't intervene in fights until the damage has been done, or they might even 'lose' crime reports at their office. It's a bloody disgrace, if the rumors are to be believed. You lot watch your backs out there. Your meals for the rest of the day are covered. And, here. A little bonus."

She hands you each a bag containing 100 Bits. "Good work out there, and you can keep the Runes you found. You know how to use 'em?"

 No.707803

>>707802
I take my leave to sit outside of the building.

 No.707805

>>707803
Jesse joins the griffon. "Hey, you holding up ok?"

 No.707806

>>707805
I smile and nod my head looking away.

 No.707808

>>707802
"These druids create runes, right? I imagine most of them aren't fond of outsiders, from the sound of it?" he asks, before shaking his head a little in disgust.
"If they're true, that's a shame And, thank you for the bonus-" he looks the runes over as he takes his coinbag, shaking his head a little "-and no, actually. Are they something you wear? Is there some ritual attached?"

 No.707809

>>707802
"That is quite awful… We should be able to handle ourselves, but the fact that this is happening is just silly." Sirocco thanks Haggis as she accepts the bag, not really paying attention to the other two leaving. "Though, I'm afraid I don't know how to… use them? I thought we just had to wear them and it'd work its magic."

 No.707811

>>707809
>>707808
"It's complicated, but the short version is that a druid wouldn't spit on a foreigner if they were on fire. And the druid would probably conjure the fire elemental that set the foreigner on fire in the first place, heheheh," Haggis jokes.

"Some of them, you wear. Others are activated when they're equipped to weapons. Others still have to be Bound to elements, or to your mind, or to your very soul itself," Suncatcher says, evidently quite enthusiastic as she talks about them. She seems to like the subject. "Allow me to explain, with some of the runes I have here and with the runes that we got from the cave…"

https://pastebin.com/jjesgq1A

 No.707812

>Paused

 No.708537

Last time on The Pilgrim's Way…

The party slew the head of the gobbeetles, a monster all covered in rune necklaces. Suncatcher suspected that the runes it wore pointed to the work of druids, and a collection of empty cages stored in the cavern seemed to add on to this theory. It was evidence that someone had transported these monsters here via cage, and had left them in the cave to keep pilgrims from visiting the shrine above. Defacements and graffiti on the shrine itself gave more credence to this idea.

After reporting their findings to Haggis, she said she'd report things to local lords and landowners so as to push the Sages to actually step in and investigate what was going on, insofar as they could, given their limited ability to govern what happened along the Pilgrim's Way.

The party also got 100 Bits each for their efforts, and a collection of runes for their use.

 No.708538

>All
"It's complicated, but the short version is that a druid wouldn't spit on a foreigner if they were on fire. And the druid would probably conjure the fire elemental that set the foreigner on fire in the first place, heheheh," Haggis jokes.

"Some of them, you wear. Others are activated when they're equipped to weapons. Others still have to be Bound to elements, or to your mind, or to your very soul itself," Suncatcher says, evidently quite enthusiastic as she talks about them. She seems to like the subject. "Allow me to explain, with some of the runes I have here and with the runes that we got from the cave…"

https://pastebin.com/jjesgq1A

Post sheets with response

 No.708540


 No.708542

>>708538
https://pastebin.com/9Cuj90K3

"These druids sound like a fun bunch. Do they have some kind of dress code we can identify them by, or are they just normal folks that think a certain way? Not planning on decking every one I see, but I'd like to know who to avoid, if I can."

When Suncatcher begins to explain the runes, though, she turns her attention to that, and mentally notes everything that's said. "So whoever outfitted that beetle… ended up wasting runes, since they don't stack. Astounding how they went through all that, and didn't realize their mistake."

 No.708544

"Now that we have all this gold, I think we should spend it as it will be a while before we find another shop on the road, blegh." I say giving disgust to the word spend.

 No.708545

>>708538
https://pastebin.com/XaEsRSrE

"Right- so, how do they work? Are they something passive? More… active?"

 No.708546

>There is an error on the rune sheet: instead of "Strong," for the Necklaces of Strength, it should be "Tough."
>Tough: passive; Earth ponies take 1 additional hit before becoming helpless as well as 1 extra wound once they become helpless, for a total of 6 hits and 6 wounds without other modifiers. They can also lift, carry and move heavier objects than unicorns or pegasi.

>>708542
"Ach, not really. Despite a lot of their anti-modern and anti-civilization viewpoints, a lot of druids are plainly-dressed folks like you or I, living in cottages and the like in most towns," Suncatcher explains. "Thar's what makes 'em such a slippery lot to look for. They are perfectly fine with the stereotype of the druid as some bums splashed up with war paint all over their faces, living out in a mud hut in a mire somewhere, because that lets them blend in with ordinary townsfolk. I guess a lot of them do dress up in robes like mine, hoofspun stuff, a little rough but warm."

She twirls a little to show off her robe to you, then laughs at your second question. "Year, that's the grand irony of it. If the person who put the runes on the gobbeetle knew what he was doing, the beetle would've been so much stronger! I'm suspectin' we're dealing with an inexperienced druid, some idiot lackeys, or someone who is not a druid and only thinks of them as power-grantin' relics."

"Speaking of which, how are we dividin' those up before we set out for the next station? Those runes are ours now, after all."

>>708545
"The four small necklaces are Body-type, while the big pendant and the two bracelets are Object-type. So, the necklaces can be used in conjunction with a pendant or a bracelet, but the pendant and bracelet can't be used in conjunction with one another. As for whether they are active or passive, it depends from Rune to Rune. In any case, to access their magic, all you need to do is to wear them."

>>708544
You find a comfy, albeit a little congested, general store down a few houses from the inn, ran by an old bearded earth pony, dressed up in warm wool and smoking from a pipe. As you enter, he looks up from a book he reads at the counter. "Mornin', young'in," he says. "What're you looking for today?"

You see many noteworthy items all about the cluttered shop:
-Bottled Lightning: Ranged use of Magic Bolt with the Lightning Element, 10 Bits
-Vial of Needlemouth Toxin: Apply to a weapon to give it the poisoned quality til the end of combat, 20 Bits
-Grappling Hook: Ranged, can be used to grab onto distant targets and reel them in, 30 Bits
-Rations: Food for a week of travel, 10 Bits
-Camping Equipment: For staying warm and dry at night, 10 Bits
-Medical Equipment: For treating infections, diseases, sprains, poisons and cuts, 15 Bits

>Successful bartering rolls will reduce prices

 No.708547

>>708546
"I think I'll take the necklace, but otherwise, I'll let you all decide. I've never been terribly unlucky, honestly, and I feel like Pip might find better use in the pendant."

Sirocco will follow after Blue to buy 3 things of rations,along with a vial of poison, some camping stuff, and two bundles of medical equipment, leaving her with 20 bits. She's not too interested in bartering.

 No.708549

Up to the counter I bring forward my items of purchase being 2 rations, toxin, medical equipment, and bottled lightning. Here I attempt to barter the prices.

[1d10] barter

Roll #1 7 = 7

 No.708550

>>708546
"Hrm… interesting. So, some of them work together, others are rather specific. Perhaps sets of them can be made for a specific purpose?" Pippali suggests, before looking the runes over.

"Well… we could each take a necklace, sans Suncatcher- I could offer her mine in trade. I feel like the Pendant would be fantastic, and I would love to take it."

 No.708552

>>708547
>>708550
You distribute out the runes among yourselves, but Suncatcher shakes her head. "I'll pass on this round. You lot did most of the fighting, and you're the reason I'm even able to make it out of this little town, so I'll let you take the runes as you please. Except…"

She picks up one of the bracelets and slips it on. "A good luck charm never hurt to have around. Alright, I'm good. Shall we be off?"

>>708549
>>708547
Talon is able to strike up a good bargain on the goods, knocking the price down from 65 Bits to a mere 55 Bits. The old merchant bundles up your purchases in a couple of large cloth neckerchiefs to make it easy to carry and store, then hands them to you. "Pilgrims, am I right? Take care up out there on the old road, and keep yourselves warm and dry. There's mires up along the Pilgrim's Way, and a frightful place at that. That road goes through many of the bogs, and trappers have been buryin' their snares and the like closer and closer to the road lately to catch their quarry."

 No.708554

>>708552
"So, keep an eye out for snares, gotcha. Shouldn't be much of a danger with all of us traveling in a group, but I appreciate the advice." Siro gives the man a little nod, before heading out of the shop. She gives Suncatcher an affirmative smile, but waits for everyone else to group up before trotting onwards.

 No.708555

>>708552
"I say we keep at least some of the traces. Just in case we get lost I want a source of food"

 No.708556

>>708555
"Always want to be safe rather than sorry."

 No.708557

>>708552
"If you're sure- In that case, the four of us can each take one. Seems simple enough, yes?" he asks, taking both the pendant and the necklace for himself.

>>708554
>>708552
"Alright, I'll keep my eyes peeled. The last thing we need is to get caught up like that at a bad time."

 No.708558

>>708557
>>708556
>>708555
>>708554
After your group has gotten their business concluded, you regroup, finding the main road as it runs through the mountainous town, and head for its northern gate, where a pair of guards briefly check your passports to confirm that you are indeed pilgrims. After this, they open the gates, allowing you to pass through the town's exit.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iW6Nme2D2TU

Your path inclines downward, at first a smooth slope which quickly turns more rocky and steep, making fast going very treacherous. "According to my notes, it's going to be quite a while before we can expect to see the next shrine. So… any good songs you lads know?" Suncatcher asks.

>Make 3 navigation and 2 wilderness survival rolls for a total of 5

 No.708560

>>708558

Surveyor: passive; You have keen eyes when flying on high. While flying you can give either an ally or yourself +1 to ranged attacks and skills.

Survival: spot check rolls +3. Can create and forage for basic supplies like rope, bandages, tents, torches and low-quality meals. Can see far into the distance and can see if dim or night light.

I go and take flight ahead to scout for the group, keeping my eyes peeled for trouble.

[1d10+4] Navigation
[1d10+4]
[1d10+4]

[1d10+4]wilderness survival
[1d10+4]

>>Like so?


Roll #1 9 + 4 = 13 / Roll #2 6 + 4 = 10 / Roll #3 4 + 4 = 8 / Roll #4 8 + 4 = 12 / Roll #5 7 + 4 = 11

 No.708561

>>708558
>[1d10+1] [1d10+1] [1d10+1] Navigation
>[1d10] [1d10] Survival

Roll #1 8 + 1 = 9 / Roll #2 8 + 1 = 9 / Roll #3 2 + 1 = 3 / Roll #4 3 = 3 / Roll #5 4 = 4

 No.708562

>>708558
>[1d10] [1d10] [1d10] Navigation
[1d1o+2] [1d10+2]Survival

Roll #1 2 = 2 / Roll #2 8 = 8 / Roll #3 8 = 8 / Roll #4 2 + 2 = 4

 No.708563

>>708560

[1d10+1] nav
[1d10+1]
[1d10+1]

[1d10]wilderness
[1d10]

"Oh, I know plenty!" Sirocco beams as she starts to sing a cheerful ditty that Pippali has likely heard a hundred times.

Roll #1 9 + 1 = 10 / Roll #2 8 + 1 = 9 / Roll #3 5 + 1 = 6 / Roll #4 5 = 5 / Roll #5 1 = 1

 No.708564

>>708558
"I mean I know a couple marching songs"

 No.708565

>>708564
>>708563
"If you don't mind, the music could be nice. But, Siro here does like her singing." he says, giving her a nuzzle.

 No.708566

>>708563
>>708562
>>708560
>>708561
As you journey onward, the cold and chill are everpresent, and the way is long and winding, bringing you down the mountainside into a dense forest, the road now overgrown with many spiny plants, jutting rocks, and biting insects. All the while, however, Soft Talon proves himself a capable navigator and scout, finding many safe paths from above when the main road becomes inaccessible due to the many obstacles of nature.

Over the five days of travel, you conserve your rations carefully, and manage for the most part to keep your supplies clean, but Pippali, Jesse and Sirocco have a little of their food swiped by woodland creatures, bright green birds and squads of tiny insects, and odd, little monkey-squirrel hybrid creatures. Most of it is intact, however.

By the evening of the sixth day of travel, you come within sight of a large shrine: A building of stone and wood, it is a one-story building, shaped like a church. Much of the exterior shows damage, both from the natural elements and from signs of sabotage and vandalism, but the structure still stands. Suncatcher approaches it quietly, keeping her ears and eyes out for sounds and signs of trouble. "Should be the next Station, right here," she says.

>roll perception

 No.708567

>>708566
"Well then, looks like this is our stop" Jesse observes
[1d10]

Roll #1 7 = 7

 No.708568

>>708566
Looking forth around the area searching for any oddities, up and down around the area.

Surveyor: passive; You have keen eyes when flying on high. While flying you can give either an ally or yourself +1 to ranged attacks and skills.

Survival: spot check rolls +3. Can create and forage for basic supplies like rope, bandages, tents, torches and low-quality meals. Can see far into the distance and can see if dim or night light.

[1d10+4]

Roll #1 2 + 4 = 6

 No.708569

Sirocco is very sad about her food getting stolen, but she can live with it. Once they draw closer to the church-like building, she steps lightly on her hooves, careful not to make any noise.

[1d10] percep

Roll #1 4 = 4

 No.708570

>>708566
>[1d10+1] Perception

"This does look like the right sort of place- any clue what else is around here, or is this rather isolated?" the stallion asks, humming a little as he peers around.

Roll #1 9 + 1 = 10

 No.708571

>>708570
>>708569
>>708568
>>708567
Much of the internal structure has been smashed, and you can see that there are several places for relics and offerings that have been taken, as indicated by circles of dust in the floor where there once stood furniture. At the far end of the small church is a shrine, depicting another episode from the wandering miracle-worker, Saint Orare. In this one, she stands above a mire, filled with rotten muck and clumps of monsters, insect and fish-like. With a harpoon and net, she captures and slays the beasts within, and the mural indicates that this allowed for farmers to begin cultivating special crops in the mire, allowing them to form towns and prosper.

"I guess this one's the Station of the Clinging Mud," Suncatcher reports, reading the runic inscription at the top of the mural. "… wish I'd invested in some galoshes back at that town. I'll bet we'll have to go through this way onto the next one."

As with the previous station, this station has a basin for offerings, and a stamp and rubber ink pad for marking passports.

Soft Talon, Pippali and Jesse notice a figure curled up asleep on a pew: a white crystal pony stallion with a red mane, clothed in tattered garb, clutching a wicked-looking halberd, its blade made of crystal. By his look, he seems to be a pilgrim, yet he also has linen bracers on his biceps, which are decorated with runes. Suncatcher doesn't seem to notice him.

 No.708572

>>708571
Jesse walks over to the stallion sleeping
"Uh hey, care tellin' us what you're doin' here?"

 No.708573

>>708571
"Yknow, I do find it odd that they don't destroy the stamps and ink pads." Siro wonders aloud as she starts to head on over to mark her passport. However, when Jesse points out the sleeping pony, she stops dead in her tracks to take a peek at the fellow.

 No.708574

>>708572
I go up next to Jesse to look at this being in curiosity my head tilted to the side looking at them, squatting down on the floor.

 No.708575

>>708571
"Huh… 'scuse me, miss- what exactly are you doing out here?" he asks the mare, his sight immediately drawn to her.

>>708573
"Maybe it doesn't seem worth it?"

 No.708576

>>708573
"I was wondering that at the last station, but this one being here confirms it's probably deliberate," Suncatcher says. "Either they don't consider these significant enough to mess with, or there's some kind of superstition even among the druids about it. Maybe they think that if they take these, they'll bring some vengeful spirit upon them? That's a pretty weak hypothesis, of course. If they're going to be superstitious, they wouldn't smash up temples and deface murals. The third possibility is the one I consider the most likely: They want us to get our passports stamped so that they can identify us as pilgrims. That would let them know who they should target further up the road."

>>708572
>>708573
>>708574
>>708575
The pony gradually wakes as you talk to him, rolling out and stretching his muscles lazily before rolling over. His eyes widen with shock when he comes to the end of the pew, but catches himself before he hits the cold ground. "Taking a quick nap before I try and get a move on again, but it's not much use; I'm still stuck here," the pony says, blinking the cold and sleep away from his eyes. He leans on the halberd's handle, sizing you all up. "Who are you lot? This ain't much of a touristy spot, now, innit?"

Suncatcher remains silent, waiting for you to speak first.

 No.708577

>>708576
"We're pilgrim's, but the question is what are you doin' out here alone?"

 No.708578

>>708576
I give a little wave from behind the group. "Howdy."

 No.708579

>>708576
"Oh- you're a pilgrim, I imagine? We're doing much the same. I suppose it's a pleasure to meet you, then. I'm Pippali." The stallion says, offering a hoof to shake and smiling.

 No.708580

>>708576
"Makes enough sense, Suncatcher. I was thinking that last point especially."

As for the crystal pony, Siro just nods in agreement with her friends, not really sure what else to say that hasn't already been said.

 No.708581

>>708577
"I'm making the pilgrimage, of course!" the pony says, showing off his passport, which has the two stamps of the stations you've visited so far. "What, a fellow can't take the journey on his own? Though, he certainly shouldn't, as he'll run up against a wall he has not the skills to crack himself. That's the bind that's kept me here for this time, stalled upon my journey. The way ahead is blocked, and I can't get through it very well myself."

>>708578
>>708579
>>708580
"I am Candelabrum," he says. He returns your shake, and offers a round to the others, including to Suncatcher, who backs away.
"What's the damage with this one?" Candelabrum asks.
"Look, I'm sorry, there's a – the short version: there's a curse upon me, I can't get close to anyone," Suncatcher says.
"Ach, you and all the other girls!" Candelabrum quips.
Suncatcher gives him a flat, unkind glare, but Candelabrum simply grins. "Ah, quit your starin', you're not the only one carryin' around a curse out here," he says with a shake of his halberd.

After that, he sobers up. "If you're pilgrims too, you're in a bad spot of luck. The way ahead is blocked by a rotten cavalcade of magic and traps."

 No.708582

>>708581
"As unfortunate as it sounds, maybe it is possible to go around?" I ask no one in particular.

 No.708583

>>708581
"Calm down buddy, I say you come with us so ya don't end up dead. Also ya care to tell us about the curse" Jesse inquires and gives the stallion a puzzled look

 No.708584

>>708581
"Magic and traps? More than the snares we've been avoiding, I assume?" the stallion asks, cocking his head to the side and humming thoughtfully. "Something with druids, perhaps?"

 No.708585

>>708583
"Whoa, whoa there. I told you that there was a curse upfront to gauge your reaction," Canelabrum says. "Instead of immediately backing off, you stuck around to find out more. That's a good sign, but there are all kinds of people on this road who claim to be pilgrims, including a lot of bandits and malcontents." As evidence, he gestures around the smashed-up church. "We don't know each other well, so before I can tell you about the curse in detail, I need to know you lot better. What say I keep it my secret til the next station, or until it's relevant information? I can assure of your safety around this weapon in peaceful settings like this one."

>>708582
"For people who can fly quite high, yes, but for those who can only walk, no," Candelabrum answers. "And unless you plan to carry me through the skies, I'm stuck here. Besides, I want to clear out the road for those who come after us, so they can walk this road without fear."

>>708584
>>708583
>>708582
"I dunno the exact cause, but the area beyond this rearranges itself at an infuriating rate, and in an infuriatingly illogical and disorderly manner," Candelabrum says. "Trees will block off paths, rocks will sprout up out of nowhere to make forks in the road, and bog-pits will pop up out of nowhere to make you stumble face-first into mud and leeches. All a right mess."

"I don't quite know what the secret is, because I keep getting turned around before I can get in too deep, so I'd appreciate the help, especially if you're keen at navigating and sensing magic."

 No.708586

>>708585
"Several of us can fly, scouting shouldn't be that big of a problem as long as we keep in communications."

 No.708587

>>708585
"With enough eyes around we are bound to spot the traps ahead of time, I believe." I tap my chin.

 No.708588

>>708585
"Bizarre… I'm not the best tracker, but a few of my friends are- I'm sure the group of us can get to the source of this, if you'll have us."

 No.708589

>>708585
Sirocco gives the stallion's weapon a quick once over, before asking a question. "How do you propose we clear out a path, then? I'm no expert when it comes to magical nonsense like this, I'm afraid, but I can fly, so I'll do my best to help."

 No.708590

>>708589
"Find the disturbance, and then banish it back to the Sidhe if it's a spirit, smash it if it's a Rune, or kill it if it's a monster or spellcaster. A winning formula, in my past experiences."

>>708586
>>708587
>>708588
"That you can, then, eh?" Candelabrum asks. "Then, off we go! Ah, but be wary up there, as well. Whatever's causing this is a strong magic, and I've no reason to think that whatever rascal set it up wouldn't be inclined or have the power to change the weather, too. Watch you don't get zapped by lightning or run into a cloud of crows, will you?"

Happy to get moving again, Candelabrum heads outside, gesturing ahead with his halberd to the path ahead. Up ahead, a fog has settled in, trapped by the valley formed by the nearby mountains. Just at the fog's edge, you see a mire, a muddy wetland rife with trees that have long, spidery roots exending out of the ground. The road all but vanishes at the fog's touch.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q9ieYLHc1fQ

"We'll go on in, and you fliers give us a shoutout, as to the path. Any objections?"

>If you want to keep an eye out, as Candelabrum says, the fog gives a -1 penalty to it

 No.708591

>>708590
"Blue and Sirocco join me in the air and keep a lookout for anything. Report back to me and I'll tell the rest of the party what you see. As for the rest of you sit tight and be patient." Jesse commands and takes flight
[1d10+2]

Roll #1 9 + 2 = 11

 No.708592

>>708590
>>708591
"Will do!"

Surveyor: passive; You have keen eyes when flying on high. While flying you can give either an ally or yourself +1 to ranged attacks and skills.

Survival: spot check rolls +3. Can create and forage for basic supplies like rope, bandages, tents, torches and low-quality meals. Can see far into the distance and can see if dim or night light.

[1d10+4]

Roll #1 3 + 4 = 7

 No.708593

>>708590
Pippali, unable to fly like the others, decides to stay by Candelabrum and push forwards on the ground. The zebra tries his best to keep a lookout, hoping his excellent eyes will do the trick.
>[1d10] (+1/-1)

Roll #1 1 = 1

 No.708594

>>708590
Sirocco nervously looks out at the fog, not exactly relishing the thought of encountering what lies within.

>>708591
She flaps into the air, and gives Jesse an affirmative salute, before scanning the horizon for clues.
[1d10]

Roll #1 8 = 8

 No.708595

>>708591
>>708592
>>708593
Your group proceeds into the fog-shrouded mire, sticking close both in air and on land to ensure your safe passage through the landscape. Your fliers prove to be an excellent and much-needed help: they are the first to spot when trees and rocks begin to move down below, blocking off the road and forcing the land-bound group to take a left or a right to get around the new obstacles. In one of the forays into the muck, Pippali stumbles when his leg is caught on a string of brambles, landing with a splash into the gunk and grazing his head on a nearby tree root.
>Pippali loses 1 wound

As the group gets further in, the fog grows more thick, making it harder to see even from above, and there comes a faint thrilling in the air, the sign of potent magic. Roll for sensing it, and for navigation (2 separate rolls)

Suncatcher pauses, closing her eyes as she senses the magic twisting in the air.

 No.708596


 No.708597

>>708595
[1d10]
[1d10]

Roll #1 6 = 6 / Roll #2 7 = 7

 No.708598

>>708595
Surveyor: passive; You have keen eyes when flying on high. While flying you can give either an ally or yourself +1 to ranged attacks and skills.

Survival: spot check rolls +3. Can create and forage for basic supplies like rope, bandages, tents, torches and low-quality meals. Can see far into the distance and can see if dim or night light.

[1d10+4] navigation
[1d10+4]

Roll #1 5 + 4 = 9 / Roll #2 6 + 4 = 10

 No.708599

>>708595
"Ack- no good, no good at all." the stallion says, rubbing his head and pulling himself back to his hooves. He looks around pensively, a little more wary for something like that bit again.
>[1d10] [1d10]

Roll #1 5 = 5 / Roll #2 3 = 3

 No.708600

>>708595
[1d10]
[1d10]

Sirocco quickly flaps down to help Pippali back to his feet. She dusts him off before going back to her flying duties

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

 No.708601

>>708600
>>708597
>>708598
>>708599
The team on the ground has much more trouble proceeding this time, as the fog is truly dense, settling in on all sides in opaque clouds, obscuring all light, and it is only through the callouts from the fliers above that they are able to make any headway, as they bump and crash into various plants and rocks amid the forest's perpetual self-rearrangement.

Carefully attuning yourselves to the fleeting magic sense, though, Soft Talon is able to pinpoint the source of that magic feeling a little distance off from the road, spotting a large drake, the size of a house, perched upon a rare stationary rock in the forest. It's gnawing upon a giant magic crystal, which is covered in rune etchings. From the dragon's tooth marks, magic fog and energy flow, and it becomes clear to Talon that this is the source of the forest's transformations. The dragon looks quite powerful, certainly a far greater threat than the gobbeetle that badly injured some of your party and even slew Little Sword. The question, then, is how to stop it.

>Paused

 No.709037

Last time on the Pilgrim's Way…

The party reached the second Station, known as the Station of the Clinging Mud, a small church that had been defaced by vandals in recent time. There, they got their passports stamped, and met a fellow pilgrim by the name of Candelabrum, a crystal pony who bore a halberd that he alluded to being cursed. In need of assistance along the way, he asked for the party's help in getting around the obstacles on the road ahead.

In short time, they learned that these obstacles consisted of a rearranging forest, a thick fog that rendered most of the path invisible for being so dense, as well as various traps left behind by careless hunters in the marsh that surrounded the path. By working together with those who could fly, the party was able to get through some of the forest.

Post sheets and respond to the last post. >>708601

 No.709038

>>708601
https://pastebin.com/9Cuj90K3

Sirocco flaps back down towards the ground, so she's not as exposed in the air. She finds Pippali to be nice cover, so she just hides behind him as she peeks at the dragon. "S-So, any ideas? Not sure we can chase that thing away on our own…"

 No.709039

>>708601
>>709038
https://pastebin.com/XaEsRSrE

Pippali blinks in surprise upon seeing the dragon, stumbling back a step and looking at it. When Sirocco lands behind him he reposition himself to make sure she's nice and covered, and lets out an unsure-sounding hum.

"I'm… not sure, really. Dragons can be smart like a pony or anothersuch creature, though I've never met one myself… maybe we should try speaking with it?"

 No.709040

>>708601
https://pastebin.com/FQ49rcHe

Jesse lands on the ground with a satisfying thud. "Fog's too thick to see anythin' from the air. For now just watch your step" Jesse alerts

 No.709041

>>709040
"W-wait a second. Is that a dragon? Ugghhh this won't be fun" Jesse groans

>>709039
"You can forget speakin' with it. Damn near impossible to reason with"

 No.709042

>>709038
>>709039
>>709040
"That looks a little more like a drake or a wyrm," Suncatcher says, peering at the drake from behind a tree, where it cannot see your group. "They're like what birds and cats are to griffons. Not terribly intelligent, unless they've built up great hordes and have consumed many things. Still dangerous, all the same."

"Well, I guess we'll just give up and go back home then," Candelabrum says with a hint of sarcasm. "Come now, there's six of us here! Surely we can come up with something to chase it off, or to obtain a peaceful pass along the road."

 No.709045

>>709042
"Frankly I don't care what it is. If it breathes fire and in our way then I ain't a fan of it. Anyone got suggestions on how to deal with it?" He asks pacing slightly and eyeing the creature

 No.709046

>>709042
https://pastebin.com/UtJCKZgu
"What is our luck to have all these obstacles here?" I complain.

 No.709047

>>709042
"Maybe we could give it something else to gnaw on instead of the crystal? Something else shiny, that isn't as… harmful to the surrounding area?" he suggests, stroking his chin in thought.

"Any ideas, Sirocco?"

 No.709048

>>709042
"Y-You're right, we can probably chase it off! That thing it's chewing on looks important, so I think getting it to shoo is our best bet. We could… lure it away, perhaps? I don't know if we'd be able to drive it off with force, so that might be our only option. Do we have anything shiny to distract it with?" Siro asks, as her eyes casually glance over the crystal horse.

 No.709049

>>709048
>>709047
Well we got two options if we wanna lure it. 1. Combine our gold or 2. Use the crystal horse we just met

 No.709050

>>709049
"I am sure there are way more options than that, like more confrontational ways."

 No.709051

>>709048
>>709049
"I-I'd rather avoid distracting it with another living thing- maybe we could find something in the area?"

 No.709052

>>709049
>>709048
>>709047
>>709046
"…Wait," Candelabrum says as you look at him. "I might look shiny, but it's only an appearance! He won't take to me one bit like he is to that magic crystal. Besides, it'd be a disgrace to Saint Orare if you sacrificed your fellow pilgrim just to get past an obstacle!"

 No.709053

>>709049
"Y-Yeah, let's *not* sacrifice our new friend" Sirocco whispers as she leans over Pippali's back.

>>709051
"And I just said that we might not be able to take it head on. We can be smart and still get past it! Probably."

 No.709054

>>709052
"Ignoring who it'd be a disgrace to, it'd be just awful- I'm not sure why my companion suggested that."

 No.709055

>>709052
>>709054

"Alright I got a better idea. Pippali. You got a sword dont ya? If ya do then here's the idea. Candel can use his body as prism to filter light with. Pip can aim a beam of light away from that rune. Play with it like a cat."

 No.709056

>>709055
"Actually… I don't have a sword, no- I've got a guantlet, but it's not very reflective."

 No.709057

>>709055
"Ooo, can you really do that, Candelabrum? That's pretty neat! Suncatcher said it was like a cat, so maybe it'll work."

 No.709058

>>709056
"I suppose a nice n shiny coin could work"

>>709057
"I sure hope it does. I'd rather not get my hair singed"

 No.709059

>>709054
>>709055
>>709050
>>709058
"A bit of light, I can reflect very easily if I turn my body to crystal," Candelabrum confirms. "Alright, let's do it! A torch should do well for a light source, shouldn't it?"
"Well, hold on now," Suncatcher says. "We've still got to get that crystal out of its mouth first. What good would it to do to create a beam of light to distract the drake with, if it's content to gnaw on the crystal that it already has? What if it's just bored of the light we make since it has something tangible already in its grasp?"

 No.709060

>>709059
"Well now that makes our job harder. I suppose we could distract it first using a weapon then get its attention with the light. Come to think of it we may be able to blind the thing if we got enough to use"

 No.709061

>>709059
"Well, the idea is that we can distract it long enough to grab the gem. Cats usually drop what they're doing to chase something interesting, so perhaps we can lure it away, even if it's just temporary." Sirocco explains as she lights up a torch for her crystal friend to use.

 No.709062

>>709059
>>709061
"Right- maybe we smack something nearby where we shine the light to get its attention, and hope it follows?"

 No.709063

>>709062
"Y'know I suppose a nice ol gunshot outta get it's attention" He says and draws his weapon with a slight smile

 No.709064

>>709063
"Would a trap for it be more appropriate?" I ask.

 No.709065

>>709064
"I don't know about you but I dont wanna get in blastin' distance of that thing"

 No.709066

>>709064
>>709060
>>709061
>>709062
"Talon's got the right idea," Suncatcher says. "Setting up a trap would help buy us a little more time to get past it. Can you set that up?" she asks him. "Just something simple to hold it while we get away from its nest."
Candelabrum takes the torch that Sirocco lights. "This should do the trick. When you're ready to go, just give the word."

 No.709067

>>709066
"I am sure I can also fix something up." I say.

trap: recharge 1; Starting next turn, first enemy to attack is helpless for 2 turns.

[1d10]

Roll #1 3 = 3

 No.709068

>>709066
"I suppose you're right. I'll get it's attention and lead it to the trap. On my mark do the plan" Jesse says and creeps closer to the drake

 No.709069

>>709067
[1d10]

Roll #1 10 = 10

 No.709070

>>709066

"I'll leave the word-giving to my friends. I'm ready when you are." Sirocco pats one of her hooves with the other as she smiles at Candelabrum

 No.709071

>>709070
>>709066
>>709067
Everyone ready? You better be because 3…2…1…Jesse fires near the beast to get its attention
[1d10]

Roll #1 9 = 9

 No.709072

>>709066
>>709070
>>709071
Pippali awaits the signal!

 No.709073

>>709072
"That's the signal!" He screams to the party

 No.709074

>>709071
>>709070
>>709069
>>709072
At the sound of the gunshot, the drake looks up, turning its head toward the sound of the shot with the crystal still in its mouth.
"Hmm, wait, how will this even work? Oh, we're starting!" Canedlabrum exclaims, and turns crystalline and translucent. Holding the torch close to his body, he causes an array of lights to shine forth through the other side, amplified by the prism, which he directs to shine upon the spot in the mire where the trap has been set.

The drake drops the crystal and slinks over to to the light, sniffing and pawing at the mire, until it sets off the rope trap, which ensnares its legs together and wraps around its neck, pulling the drake down into the mud. With a growl, it thrashes about, but is pinned. Gulping at the sight of the beast so close, Suncatcher books it, heading forward into the fog, and Canedlabrum is close behind her, extinguishing the torch in the mud.

>roll for navigation and running

 No.709075

>>709074
"Everyone careful!" He yells and runs straight at the crystal

[1d10+2] [1d10]

Roll #1 2 + 2 = 4 / Roll #2 6 = 6

 No.709076

>>709074

Sirocco quickly flaps into the air, and swoops towards the crystal that the beast was holding.

[1d10+1] navigation
[1d10] running (flying? I could technically use sonic boom here to dash forwards.)

Roll #1 2 + 1 = 3 / Roll #2 8 = 8

 No.709077

>>709074
Pippali books it for the crystal, like the others!
>[1d10+1] Navigation
>[1d10] Running

Roll #1 1 + 1 = 2 / Roll #2 5 = 5

 No.709078

And so the sprint is on with me starting to take to the air.

Survival: spot check rolls +3. Can create and forage for basic supplies like rope, bandages, tents, torches and low-quality meals. Can see far into the distance and can see if dim or night light.

Surveyor: passive; You have keen eyes when flying on high. While flying you can give either an ally or yourself +1 to ranged attacks and skills.

[1d10] Running
[1d10+4] Navigation

Roll #1 3 = 3 / Roll #2 2 + 4 = 6

 No.709079

>>709078
>>709077
>>709076
>>709075
You quickly run toward the crystal that the drake dropped before it came over to investigate your trap, where it now lies bound about twenty feet behind you. The crystal, about eight feet in height and five wide, is badly damaged, and even with the drake no longer gnawing on it, the crystal is still exuding its magic fog.

Suncatcher and Candelabrum run for the road beyond the crystal, but stop before they can get any further away from you, seeing you stop at the crystal. The two of them look at the crystal with reluctance, realizing that they ought to do something about it rather than just run. "That trap's not going to hold forever," Candelabrum says. "What do we do with this?"

 No.709080

>>709079
"Do what we already did. Use a torch and distract it!" Jesse cries and attempts to pick up part of the crystal. Running mostly on adrenaline and fear he prays the huge rock will be liftable

 No.709081

>>709079
"Is there some way we could quickly re-seal it? I can't imagine we can stop it from gnawing, but perhaps we could patch the leak…"

 No.709082

>>709081
"Chances are its gonna gnaw on it regardless. Best thing we can do is try and move it while we're here"

 No.709083

>>709079
"What? I thought you were looking to fix this. Don't you know what to do? Can you fix it or something? Or… perhaps break it completely?"

 No.709084

>>709079
I attempt to look around the area up and down trying to see if there are any items to patch up the crystal.

Survival: spot check rolls +3. Can create and forage for basic supplies like rope, bandages, tents, torches and low-quality meals. Can see far into the distance and can see if dim or night light.

Surveyor: passive; You have keen eyes when flying on high. While flying you can give either an ally or yourself +1 to ranged attacks and skills.

[1d10+4]

Roll #1 2 + 4 = 6

 No.709085

>>709082
>>709083
>>709084
"Hrm… what if we carry it off? There's six of us, and that could be enough to try carrying it off."

 No.709086

>>709083
"Actually, allow me to try." Sirocco clears her throat and does a few preliminary stretches, before winding up a powerful strike, and smashing a hoof down on the crystal.

(Fists of fury to change hoof weapon type to hammer/whatever counts as something like that)

[1d10]

Roll #1 3 = 3

 No.709087

>>709085
"That's what Im tryin' to do now if ya don't mind can you lend a hand?"

 No.709088

>>709080
>>709083
>>709081
>>709084
The crystal's surface proves to be very durable, even under attack, yet as Jesse tests its weight, it does not prove to be unreasonably heavy, as he is able to lift one of the corners by himself by a few inches. With a group of six, it is likely you could carry it a good distance while the drake is still immobilized. Soft Talon fails to find anything that might patch it up, but it could be concealed under cloaks, blankets, or perhaps the tents that you purchased from the shop in the previous town.
"Uh…" Candelabrum says, looking back at the drake as it works against its binds. "We'd have to break it or run off with it, and the latter's looking like our best option. All agreed?"
"Whatever gets us to the next station!" Suncatcher says.

 No.709089

>>709088
"Lets try our best to get this thing away and analyzed. Remember our main priority is staying alive!" Jesse orders and gestures to the others to lift the crystal

 No.709090

>>709086
"N-Not so fast- we're not sure if breaking it would make things worse…" he says, gently sliding her back.

>>709087
>>709088
Pippali nods to the two of them and gets down under the gem, trying to help lift it up!

 No.709091

>>709088
Sirocco tries to act cool after her punch totally didn't even break the gem. She clears her throat again, and moves to pick up a corner on her own, with the assistance of her wings.

 No.709092

>>709088
"Would covering it up help any?" I ask to the group.

 No.709093

>>709092
"Might make the fog harder to trace or something" Jesse replies

 No.709094

>>709093
"We have some tents that we can put into use." I suggest.

 No.709095

>>709094
"Good idea but we got a thing to transport first"

 No.709096

>>709094
"Sounds like a great idea! Hurry up and stick it on!" Siro grunts as she puts her back into holding up the crystal.

 No.709097

>>709092
>>709093
"Yeah, let's throw a tarp over it then- be quick, though. The fog itself might do a good enough job covering our escape, provided we move quickly enough."

 No.709098

>>709089
>>709090
>>709091
>>709092
Covering the crystal in one of the tents, you all pick it up, finding that it is not overly heavy with all of you working together to grab it. It faintly glows beneath the cover, but it is dulled greatly by the tent's heavy cloth.

You hear a ripping sound coming from the fog behind you, and an angry screech, indicating that the drake is nearly free of its binds. "The drake was facing away from us when it fell into the trap, so let's get out of sight before it can turn around and see the glow!" Suncatcher says, trotting ahead into the fog.

>roll for running/navigation again

 No.709099

>>709097
"Will do!"

 No.709100

>>709098
Sirocco quietly nods as she keeps pace with the others. Moving too fast would trip everyone up!

[1d10+1] nav
[1d20] running

Roll #1 2 + 1 = 3 / Roll #2 12 = 12

 No.709101

>>709100
[1d10] My bad

Roll #1 3 = 3

 No.709102

>>709098
>Running [1d10]
>Navigation [1d10+1]

Roll #1 6 = 6 / Roll #2 6 + 1 = 7

 No.709103

>>709098
"Hope you guys got some fire left, we're gonna need it" Jesse says quietly looks around the group and into the forest
[1d10]
[1d10]

Roll #1 8 = 8 / Roll #2 6 = 6

 No.709104

>>709098
[1d10+4] Navigation
[1d10] Running

Roll #1 6 + 4 = 10 / Roll #2 9 = 9

 No.709105

>>709103
>>709102
>>709100
>>709104
Running as a team through the fog-enshrouded forest is initially quite difficult, particularly in trying to keep your paces synched while also navigating around the moving trees. Sirocco stumbles a few times through the muck and mire, her legs getting cut by branches and brambles, but the others are able to support her long enough for your group to run until the screeches of the drake far behind you fade away.

Eventually, after slowing your pace and putting a little more distance between you and the drake to be safe, you find your way to a dry grassy area beyond the mire, a low but wide hill with a burial mound nearby to the west. The path is grown over with grass here, but it still clearly goes on to the north. It's nearing afternoon at this time.

Sighing from effort, Suncatcher and Candelabrum set down the crystal and pull back the tent cover, revealing the crystal again. You see that it has a rune at the top, and Suncatcher checks her notes to identify it, but she has trouble with it, frowning with a "Hmm…"

 No.709106

>>709105
As the group focuses on the rune Jesse wanders over to the burial mound. He stares down deep in thought

 No.709107

>>709105
"Is there something up to it?" I ask.

 No.709108

>>709105
Pippali stretches out with a relieved sigh once the crystal's been set back down, before turning to Sirocco and nuzzling against her affectionately. "Siro, you okay? You stumbled a little bit back there." he asks, giving her a little hug.

Looking away from her and to the crystal, he cocks his head to the side and asks "What's up? Don't recognize the rune? Maybe it was damaged…"

 No.709109

>>709105
Sirocco finds somewhere nice and dry to lie down, so she can carefully clean and bandage her hurt legs. The cuts sting, but she tries not to focus on it too much. "Are you sure it's a runes like the others? Might be some other kind of magic."

>>709108
She gives Pip a peck on the cheek in return, and smiles at him. "It'll be fine, just cut myself a bit!"

 No.709110

>>709109
>>709108
"The calligraphy style matches the runes I've learned; I just don't recognize it in any of the texts I studied when I was growing up," Suncatcher says. "That points to it either being something very old, obscure or perhaps even some kind of new invention, but that would be very frowned upon by the traditional-minded druids. In any case, we ought to break it and disrupt the magical energy stored inside. Otherwise, it'll start to affect the landscape around us."

>>709106
>>709107
Over by the burial mound, you see a large umbral cat with a single circular white spot on its chest. It's playing with some of the grass, but as you come by, it looks like it's watching you and the crystal.

 No.709111

>>709110
Jesse lays his hat down on the mound and moves toward the cat. "Well now, what're you"

 No.709112

>>709111
"My guess it is part of the wildlife, does it have anything manmade on it?" I ask Jesse.

 No.709113

>>709110
"Well, would you all like a try? Last time didn't work, and I'd rather not hurt myself any more." The pegasus nods towards the gem. "Now that we have time, we don't have to worry about doing it as fast as possible."

 No.709114

>>709109
"Good to hear- I suppose I shouldn't be too worried, you're a tough mare.~" he comments, before looking back to Suncatcher

"So… breaking it would be a good idea? I was worried the release of energy could be a serious problem. If you're certain it will be fine, then I'll give it a shot." the stallion says, stepping back and centering his balaance, before… bringing a hoof down to shatter it!
>Revolving Blade: [1d10+1] (DC-1)

Roll #1 1 + 1 = 2

 No.709115

>>709112
"Don't look like it. If you ask me I'd say it's wild"

 No.709116

>>709111
>>709112
The cat sizes up the two of you, then flits back into the grasses, circles around you, then heads for the crystal back where the others are.

>>709114
>>709113
Pippali strikes it at a bad angle, and greatly injures his wrist, feeling it sting and sear with pain.
>-1 wound
Candelabrum steps forward, drawing his crystal halberd. "Allow me a try at it. Perhaps a magical weapon will have a better result."

Raising the halberd, Candelabrum watches the blade as a deep purple energy amasses around it, coagulating and bubbling like mud in a swamp, then brings it down upon the stone.
[1d10+2] Shatter

Roll #1 7 + 2 = 9

 No.709117

>>709116
"Mmh- I suppose I should've stuck that better. Very well, then… I'm sure that Halberd'll do the trick."

 No.709118

>>709116
Jesse walks back to the mound and his wrinkled hat. Staring at the grave then out onto the plains for quite a bit of time. Seemingly looking at something

 No.709119

>>709118
"No…not again, y-you" He whispers to himself. His eyes widen but he cant take his eyes off of whatever it is.

 No.709120

>>709118
>>709119
"You alright there, Blackbriar?" he asks, a little concerned.

 No.709121

>>709119
"You uhm, doing okay, Jesse? You're talking to yourself." Sirocco asks as she continues to tend to her cuts.

 No.709122

>>709120
>>709121
"Someone that shouldn't be there is there. Someone that tried to kill me. They aren't even there, they have to be hundreds of miles away" He says keeping his eyes fixed

 No.709123

>>709122
"Uh… huh. You should lie down. You're going a bit kooky."

 No.709124

>>709123
"Im guessin' you wanna hear the story." Jesse says

 No.709125

>>709117
>>709118
As Candelabrum brings his halberd down upon the crystal, cracks radiate from the point of impact, spreading all over the surface until the crystal finally collapses. As it does, there is a sudden eruption from within the crystal. Swirling, smoky forms fly up into the air from the crystal, like a mass of ghosts. As they are released, their forms become more clear, and they take the appearance of hybrids of plants and ponies, as if they were gods or spirits embodying nature itself. As they are freed, some of them briefly express gratitude toward you, before they disperse, flying out into the nearby landscape.

As the forms are released, Suncatcher gasps. "The spirits of the hills and the wind! Aos Si! Someone must have imprisoned them in that crystal," she exclaims.

https://youtu.be/hpfgFnhgf-8

Then, something else odd happens. The aformentioned black cat comes up to watch the spirits disperse from the destroyed crystal, and as the spirit of a proud-looking warrior, dressed in leather armor and marked with spiraling war paint, emerges from the smoke, the cat reaches out and snatches the spirit as if it were mere prey. The warrior spirit gasps and struggles against the cat, but with an unnatural power, the cat bites the warrior spirit by the neck, and breaks it, causing the warrior to fall limp in its jaws. Its eyes aglow, the black cat trots toward the tall grass. It looks back briefly at all of you, then slinks away with its kill.

Candelabrum stands there dumbfounded for a moment. "Uh…"

>Paused

 No.709126

>>709125
"First we steal a thing from a drake, then I see the woman that tried to kill me, and finally a bunch of spirits just flew out of that crystal and that cat just killed one"

 No.709127

>>709124
"I… no? I said no such thing. I think you should lie down. Besides, if you're so scared, why do you want to share a story? You confuse me sometimes…"

 No.710428

Sheets!

 No.710429


 No.710430


 No.710431


 No.710432


 No.710433


 No.710434

Last time on the Pilgrim's Way:

The party, having been joined by Candelabrum, hatched a plan to get the magic crystal out of the grasp of the drake that was chewing on it. After distracting the drake with a show of light, they imprisoned it in one of Soft Talon's rope traps. Then, wrapping up the crystal in one of their tents, they carried it off, and then escaped the ever-shifting foggy marsh.

They ran for a time, and then reached a dry low hill. Being that they were now safe from their pursuer, they set the crystal down to figure out what to do about it. Deciding to smash it so that its magical energy couldn't escape and cause any more mutations, they had Candelabrum break the crystal with his powerful halberd. Upon breaking it, they saw a plethora of captive spirits fly from the shattered crystal, who thanked the party for releasing them from their captivity. Suncatcher, distraught, identified them as Aos Si: nature spirits that were widely known around Albion as the residents of the spirit world, called the Sidhe.

>>710429
>>710430
>>710432
>>710433


As Candelabrum brings his halberd down upon the crystal, cracks radiate from the point of impact, spreading all over the surface until the crystal finally collapses. As it does, there is a sudden eruption from within the crystal. Swirling, smoky forms fly up into the air from the crystal, like a mass of ghosts. As they are released, their forms become more clear, and they take the appearance of hybrids of plants and ponies, as if they were gods or spirits embodying nature itself. As they are freed, some of them briefly express gratitude toward you, before they disperse, flying out into the nearby landscape.

As the forms are released, Suncatcher gasps. "The spirits of the hills and the wind! Aos Si! Someone must have imprisoned them in that crystal," she exclaims.

https://youtu.be/hpfgFnhgf-8

Then, something else odd happens. The aformentioned black cat comes up to watch the spirits disperse from the destroyed crystal, and as the spirit of a proud-looking warrior, dressed in leather armor and marked with spiraling war paint, emerges from the smoke, the cat reaches out and snatches the spirit as if it were mere prey. The warrior spirit gasps and struggles against the cat, but with an unnatural power, the cat bites the warrior spirit by the neck, and breaks it, causing the warrior to fall limp in its jaws. Its eyes aglow, the black cat trots toward the tall grass. It looks back briefly at all of you, then slinks away with its kill.

Candelabrum stands there dumbfounded for a moment. "Uh…"

 No.710435

>>710431
Seeking to unify Albion's four squabbling Lands, you set off on a pilgrimage, in the faith that following Saing Orare's steps through the country all those years ago would bring you the miracle that you would certainly need to unify the four dissonant Clans.

You started your pilgrimage about a week and a half before the party did, beginning with the Station of the Hounds, as is traditional. As part of your pilgrimage, you had to register with the customs office in the port town of Buckthorn, which is where you got your passport. The passport contains your signature, some blank pages to serve as a journal, and a page with eight empty spots on it. Each spot is where you're supposed to put each Station's stamp, called a Proof, to prove that you've been there.

You didn't have any trouble making it to the first Station, the Station of the Hounds, in the Dogeared Hills. From there, it took you about a week traveling along the road to reach the second Station, the Station of the Clinging Mud, which was a small chapel on the side of the road, and you saw nothing out of the ordinary there. From there, you crossed through a rather placid marsh, and passed a checkpoint where the guards verified your passport and let you get on with your journey.

It was when the Pilgrim's Way took you to the next town,, the town of Spindle, that things took a turn for the worse. Unexpectedly, you fell severely ill shortly after reaching the town, and were unable to move or think clearly, suffering from a fever and hallucinations for a time. The townspeople took care of you, putting you in the local infirmary until they were able to find someone who could identify and treat your sickness.

During the time you were unconscious from the sickness, you had terrible visions of an awful fate that would befall Albion: Civil unrest, attacks on foreigners, druidic terrorism against the secular authorities, and a flooding of malevolent Aos Si into the material world, which would destroy the long-held peace that Albion enjoyed. The visions suddenly ended, and you heard voices once more – voices in the real world, that is. Through dimmed senses, you became gradually aware of a mare by the name of Juniper Light serving you certain potions that drove off your symptoms.

>>710431
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9Stkqv-KN6U
You slowly come to in a bed in a small infirmary, hearing the crackling of a fire on the far end of the room. It's a cozy log cabin, full of old tribal rugs and decorations. Several beds fill the room you're in, separated by curtains, but you're the only one in the beds at the moment.

By your side, in a rocking chair, sits an old kirin mare, purple in coat and maroon in fur and mane. She's half-asleep, but as you start to stir, she looks over at you. "Ach! Finally awake, are we?" she asks, rising from her chair. "How do you feel? How many horns have I got, eh?"

 No.710436

>>710435
Saint*

 No.710437

>>710434
"Wait a damn minute. What..j-did you-what?"
He stammers and holds his hat to his chest

 No.710438

>>710434
"Will this come up later, or should we get the cat or something?" I tilt my head.

 No.710439

>>710435
Communion realizes that the dreams have faded, and slowly opens her eyes to the strange new world around her. At first, she takes in her surroundings, her head clear for the first time in what feels like weeks. A pang of memory strikes her: the disturbing visions of a coming storm. The feeling fades to a vague disease and lingering sense of dread as she tries to put it behind her.

Sitting up, she finds her body responsive and lithe. The matronly kirin beside her has one horn, and Communion tells her as much before asking how long she was under.

Memories, real ones of the real world, slowly filter into her awareness. Already she is starting to plan a way to repay the kindness of the people of Spindle, without whom she would certainly have faced her demise.

 No.710440

>>710434
"Oh, dear. That's uhm, certainly not a good sign, right? Do cats normally do that?" Siro asks, as she gestures towards the cat, and stares at Candelabrum in disbelief. "And, releasing those was a good thing, yes?"

 No.710441

>>710440
"Can't say it's a good thing, no. And cats most certainly don't do that"

 No.710442

>>710434
>>710440
"No, not normally- In fact, I would expect cats to largely stick away from that sort of thing. I'd wager freeing the spirits is good, but… having one get eaten likely isn't good."

 No.710443

>>710442
>>710437
>>710438
>>710440
Candelabrum rushes into the grassy patch where the cat vanished, brushing aside the grasses with the butt of his halberd. "Hey, c'mon, give that guy back, we just rescued him!"

Suncatcher stays well away from the grass. "No, even with all the legends about cats, eating spirits certainly does not ever come up among them," she says with a shudder. "But yes, we were right to release those spirits. Those are Aos Si, nature spirits like I said. They come from the Sidhe, which is part of the spirit world that overlaps with Albion. You know how Albion is renowned for having lots of natural magic around? It pours in from the Sidhe, usually at fairy springs and holy wells and in magical groves, that sort of thing.

"The Aos Si normally don't live out in the open, though. They typically stick to specific spots out in the countryside, and in the wilderness and mountains. The druids are supposed to tend to them, give them offerings, and generally keep them appeased. For these Aos Si to be trapped in this crystal is a serious violation of the Treaty between mortals and Aos Si!"

"There's a Treaty?" Candelabrum asks as he fishes around in the grass for the cat.

"Don't you know basic history?" Suncatcher scoffs. "Yes, there was, it's the reason the Aos Si haven't driven us all off of Albion!"

Candelabrum is about to retort, but stumbles forward into the tall grass, halberd and all. Suncatcher's mouth falls open as he vanishes. "Oh shit."

 No.710444

>>710439
The kirin nods. "M'name's Juniper Light, girl. You collapsed out in the middle of town on market day. D'you remember that?"

Vaguely, yes you do: while stopping for supplies, you collapsed, but the details remain foggy in your mind. "What brought you here, anyway? I should hope you're not a pilgrim, like the rest. It'd be a bad thing if you were, what with what's been going down."

 No.710445

>>710443
"You bring up a good point but the question is who did it and.." He sees them look behind him and he slowly turns around "how in the hell did they do it?"

 No.710446

>>710443
"Is there a way we can start stockpiling all this evidence?" I ask.

 No.710447

>>710443
"If they're able to chase us off this land, how did they get cap- C-Candle! Shoot, are you okay?" The pegasus cuts herself off as she bounds across the ground, assisted by her wings. She hovers above the grassy patch where the stallion vanished, as she sweeps her eyes around. He couldn't be that hard to find, right? He was super shiny, after all.

 No.710448

>>710444
Communion reflects on her memory, finding that she does remember, although the fact that it was market day is a revelation. Explains why there were so many folks out and about, and probably why she was helped so readily.

"Thank you, Juniper Light. Your name is fitting, as you shine with an inner light and," taking a deep inhale as she stands, "smell piney and green, like a juniper tree." She smiles warmly, offering a gooey hoof in the universal gesture of friendship. "I'm grateful to meet you. I am indeed a pilgrim. I follow the journey of St. Orore to educate and purify myself. I have already gone a quarter of the way, and my resolve only grows with each passing Proof."

She pauses, hesitant to ask. "Why is that a bad thing? To which events do you refer?"

 No.710449

>>710443
Pippali goes to ask for more details, but finds himself too distracted by the sudden disappearance of Candelabraum to say much other than "W-What? History lesson later, but… where'd he go?"

 No.710450

>>710445
"More importantly: why they'd think it's a good idea to mess with the spirits of the land," Suncatcher corrects.

>>710446
There's quite a lot of crystal lying around, and it'd be excessive to pick up all of it, but Candelabrum's attack broke off enough small chunks for you to pocket a few.

>>710447
>>710449
After a few moments of searching, you see Candelabrum's head poke out of the grass a few meters away. He stands up, apparently unharmed, and pats himself down. His mouth falls open and he checks inside one of the bags at his side. "That little bastard swiped my food!"
"Ya see where it went?" Suncatcher asks.
"Nae, but it sure dragged me quite a distance before it took off," he responds. "Maybe it's a stray from one of the towns? How else did it know how to jimmy open my bag's clasp?"
"Must've been a hungry cat to take your food after pouncing on that spirit," Suncatcher laughs.
"Is that the most important thing to fixate on? I think we need to investigate this, no?"

>>710448
Juniper Light snorts, amused at your description of her being. She shakes your hoof as you offer it. "That's admirable; always good to see the young folk taking an interest in tradition and religion. The trouble, though, isn't with what you're doing. It's with who's trying to stop you.

"See, you've been out cold for several days now, so you'd have no way of knowing, but there's been many reports of pilgrims being attacked out on the Pilgrim's Way. Monsters, brigands, malevolent spirits and the like. Strange thing is, though, people who aren't pilgrims, but who live in the areas around the Pilgrim's Way, aren't being targeted. For the most part, all these attacks are happening exclusively to pilgrims. I hope you aren't planning to keep traveling alone, as you'd just end up back in the infirmary if you were."

As Juniper Light explains the situation, you become aware of a ball of fire levitating in place behind her. It morphs into a pony's shape, taking the form of a pegasus stallion as it does.

"Psst," the fireball says. Juniper Light takes no notice of it.

 No.710451

>>710450
"Please explain to me what in Celestia's name happened?

 No.710452

>>710450
>>710448
The fireball is about six or seven inches in diameter.

 No.710453

>>710450
"Would you all like to hunt down the stray?"
I say to no one in particular.

 No.710454

>>710450
Sirocco sighs when she sees Candelabrum safe and sound, and giggles as he regales his story. "You got robbed by a spirit-stealing cat? Impressive! Perhaps we can get your lunch back, along with that soul, when we finally do find him!" Her giggles turn into full on laughter, and she drops from the sky in her amusement. "Haha… hoo, boy, well, we shouldn't dawdle too long. If you didn't see where cat went, I'd follow Suncatcher's advice and head towards town."

 No.710455


 No.710456

>>710450
As the goo pony listens to Juniper, she catches notice of something strange. Her eyes follow the fiery phenomenon as it morphs into a tiny pegasus, widening slightly. She glances back to Juniper, trying to determine whether she can even perceive this, or if such a thing is so commonplace as to be unworthy of recognition.

 No.710457

>>710450
"Well, that's a relief- as long as it was just lunch it took, we should be fine. That does seem to be quite the peculiar cat, though- a little smarter, and more… shall we say, aware? We should pursue it, without a doubt."

 No.710458

>>710457
>>710451
>>710453
>>710454
"Yes, let's get a move on," Candelabrum says. "The next town shouldn't be too far off."
"Actually, we have to go through a checkpoint next, and then the next town and Station are after that," Suncatcher says, checking her notes.
"Uh, ackchyually," Candelabrum mocks, rolling his eyes.
Suncatcher leers at him. "To think I was going to offer my rations to you. Now you have to eat Pippali's."

Candelabrum chuckles and leans his halberd upon his shoulder, setting off toward the road again.

>roll 2 navigation rolls


>>710456
Juniper pauses, seeing you look at something behind her. She turns and scans the area, but can't seem to see or hear the floating fireball. "Hullo? Something the matter? Not feeling well?"

"Are you ready to get going or what?" the fireball-pegasus asks, tapping his hoof as he floats in the air. "I'm not keen on waiting too long, you know."

Juniper doesn't react to the sound, apparently unable to hear him as well.

 No.710459

>>710458
"Aww, that's okay! Pippali can eat mine!" Siro giggles as she rolls back to her hooves, and hops to Pip's side, giving him a little hip bump as she does so. "On to the station, then!"

[1d10+1]
[1d10+1]

Roll #1 4 + 1 = 5 / Roll #2 9 + 1 = 10

 No.710460

>>710458
Autumn feels a nagging sense she should know something about this. Her head must not be quite as clear as she thought.

Knowledge [1d10]

Roll #1 2 = 2

 No.710461

>>710458
Jesse takes flight so he can truly take in the landscape around him and possibly find a way to the next town

[1d10]
[1d10]

Roll #1 6 = 6 / Roll #2 10 = 10

 No.710462

>>710458
Pippali chuckles a little bit at the mention of trading rations, and gives Candelabraum a reassuring shoulder pat. "I assure you, friend- the food's spicing may be exotic, but it's edible."


>>710459
Looking to Sirocco and smiling a little, he responds to her hip-bump with one of his own to her, albeit a tad more impactful due to his size.


He'll try his best to see a path through.
>Navigation: [1d10+1] [1d10+1]

Roll #1 8 + 1 = 9 / Roll #2 4 + 1 = 5

 No.710463

>>710460
She tries but fails to remember anything about this tiny spitfire of what is obviously one of the otherkin. Narrowing her eyes, she looks right at him, leaning in as she tries her best to decide that she is hallucinating. Perhaps there's still a fever. Perhaps it has messed up her mind for good. Perhaps she really is crazy like everybody said.

She closes her eyes, shakes her head, hard. She opens her eyes.

The impatient tiny pegasus remains, as does the now-flabbergasted kirin.

 No.710464

>>710458
I take to the air to see ahead.

Survival skill

[1d10+3]
[1d10+3]

Roll #1 9 + 3 = 12 / Roll #2 6 + 3 = 9

 No.710465

>>710464
"You got sick of walkin' too eh?" He asks as he does a sort of fly and hover combination

 No.710466

>>710465
I nod my head

 No.710467

>>710466
"Forgot what it was like to be up this high. It's been quite a while since I've really taken flight." The stallion confesses with a somber look on his face

 No.710468

>>710460
Juniper now begins to look concerned and begins to prepare a concoction of strong-smelling herbs and liquids from a tray of ingredients that sits on the table beside her. "Odd, I thought I'd have gotten the last of the fever out. Here, drink some of this, it should clear your head," she says, offering you the drink.

The pegasus-fireball sighs and throws up his hooves in frustration. "Hallo there! You suddenly lose your ability to speak Equish or something? I know: Maybe you need an introduction! It's alright, I've gotten shy ones before. My name's William Wisp. You're… oh shit, what if I got the wrong pony? Hey, your name is Communion, right? I'm looking for her and I'm pretty sure you match her description."

>>710462
>>710461
>>710459
>>710464
You return to the road, and follow it through the winding marshes. The path often turns and curls through the landscape so as to avoid the deep and wet marshes and the hunter's traps that lie within. At times, you lose the path, as it crosses over with patches of overgrown grass and sudden pits of peat in the middle of the road. However, you manage to stick through it, traveling for two days through the muck and mire, thankfully finding patches of dry land to set up your campsites for the night.

Around noon on the third day, you notice the terrain start to incline upward. In the distance around you, there are several hills, and less of the marshes for which this Land was named. With this, the terrain starts to dry out and become more solid. As you journey on for a few hours, you come to meadow, and at the far end of the meadow, you see a forest of tall, wide-brimmed mushrooms, which the path runs through.

Neither Suncatcher nor Candelabrum seem surprised by the sight, and they are currently having a discussion on what breed the black cat from earlier was.

 No.710469

>>710468
"Well I'll be; mushroom forest? Never seen one of em"

 No.710470

>>710467
Indeed

 No.710471

>>710468
Communion(not autumn!*** >>710460) doesn't take her wide eyes off the apparition as she wordlessly takes the pungent draught from Juniper Light. She holds it a moment, suspicion and doubt mounting in her eyes locked on the tiny pegasus as a half smile spreads slowly across her face. Giving William Wisp one last doubting look, she tips the vessel bottoms up in one swift motion. It burns her throat and leaves an astringent, bitter aftertaste. The liquid is visible within her translucent torso as it dissipates, spreading through her body quickly. She gasps air and focuses her eyes again.

William Wisp is still there, looking expectantly at her.

She coughs, halfway from the shock of the drink, but mostly to give her a second to think. She refocuses on the kirin, forcing herself to smile even as her eyes water.

"Thank you for that. For everything. Is there any way I can repay you?" She is sincere in her inquiry, completely ignoring the wisp beside her exactly as if the "vision" had passed.

 No.710472

>>710468
"Oh, now this is quite a site- I don't think I've seen something quite like those mushrooms!" he exclaims, before giving Sirocco a playful nudge and saying "Just think of the soup I could make with those- We'd eat for weeks!"

 No.710473

>>710468
Siro stares out at the mushrooms across the way, her mouth slightly agape at the sight. "W-Wow, that is something else. I've traveled quite a bit, but that's something I've never seen before."

>>710472
The birdhorse flutters her wings and softly warbs as she's nudged. She gives the zebra a pat in return, and nods. "Yep, yep. I can't say I wouldn't get sick of the taste, but if you make it, I'd be able to bear with it!"

 No.710474

>>710471
William gawks as you turn away from him, then he floats closer. You can feel heat radiating from the flame of his body. "There, you can feel that, right? I'm not going crazy, and neither are you, I'm as peresent as she is!"

Juniper shakes her head, holding up her hoof. "If you'd like to repay me, all I ask is that you complete your pilgrimage and make an offering in my name at one of the Stations. Any one will do; I haven't been able to go recently on account of my knees getting too old. But to do that, you'll want to find some more people to join up with you. If even half of what I'm hearing is true, there's no way lone pilgrims are going to make it alive to their journey's end."

"Which is what I'm trying to help you with! I was sent by Dag, the Reckless Flame himself, to guide you!" William shouts in frustration.

>>710472
>>710469
>>710470
>>710473
"It was a calico, I'm sure of it!" Suncatcher blurts out as their argument continues.
"You don't even know what a calico looks like, and that proves it!" Candelabrum retorts. "Look, let's just shelve this until we find the damn cat, and then we can find out for our–"
"Cat!" Suncatcher says, pointing ahead.

You see the cat lounging in the shadows of one of the mushrooms on the road, green eyes aglow with an obvious energy that trails off into the sky, like small green flames. The cat also seems somewhat larger than it was earlier, but you're sure it's the same cat, as you recognize the shape of its head and body despite its larger size. It's got something trapped under its paw, a small shape that tries to run away from it, only to remain stuck under the cat's paw. You can't tell what it is from this distance (roll perception or move closer to find out more).

 No.710475

>>710474
"I'm as present as Juniper is!"*

 No.710476

>>710474
Jesse slowly moves closer to the cat. A strangely calm feeling washes over him and he observes the cat silently.

[1d10] Move

Roll #1 1 = 1

 No.710477

>>710474
Communion tries her best not to react as the fey pegasus enters her personal space. She feels the heat, hears his words, and remains stoic. She is engaged with Juniper right now, after all.

Hearing her request, the goo pony again clasps her hoof in a gesture of friendship. Eyeballing carefully, she judges the situation appropriate; she pulls the elder into a hug, solidifying the outside edges of herself as much as she can to remove the disconcerting feeling of hugging a puddle. With her best effort, she can make her hugs much more akin to hugging a water balloon.

"I would do nothing less. Celestia hears all prayers, especially at Her holiest places." She thinks a moment. "Taking the pilgrimage alone was perhaps… rash." She thinks of falling ill in a public place, and how intensely grateful she is of all the ponies there to help her, and how happy she is to be alive. She tears up a bit. "It is vital that I complete this pilgrimage. I don't know why, but it … calls to me."

She sees the kirin again through tears. "Thank you. Thank you, so much. Would that I could repay you more fully."

She becomes painfully aware of the tiny being screeching at her, and knows she must address it soon. But in private. She begs her leave of Juniper Light, heading toward the exit.

 No.710478

>>710476
"Don't scare it"

 No.710479

>>710478
"Hush, I don't intend to"

 No.710480

>>710474
"Hrm… what a bizarrely curious cat." The stallion remarks, giving it a look-see.
>Perception: [1d10+1]

"What's the significance of the breed, anyways? Is there something special about calicos?"

Roll #1 7 + 1 = 8

 No.710481

>>710474
Sirocco's ears perk up as she hears about the cat, and she wastes no time in dashing to the cat, using her intense speed to zip in and attempt to grab or pin the cat to the ground.
[1d10]

Roll #1 9 = 9

 No.710482

>>710480
"She just wanted to be right about what it was, and she blurted out the first thing that came to mind, ain't that right?" Candelabrum asks.
Suncatcher looks away with a pout. "So what? It's not my fault I've never been allowed out of the Land of Sands. They don't have many cats there."

>>710480
>>710476
>>710478
>>710481
As Jesse gets about halfway toward the cat, its pupils narrow to vertical slits, and its back arches, all hair along the spine and tail standing straight up. In the process, the cat triples in size – not in the sense of seeming to grow larger as a result of the hair, but in the literal sense, that its body grows larger.

You see beneath its paw is trapped a small pony: not a breezie, but an actual pony, who appears to have been shrunk to a mouse's size somehow. He screams for help as Sirocco launches herself foward, only for the cat to pin him under its paw again.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gUKnARapoWs

As Sirocco pins the cat beneath her, it growls in shock and expands itself again, growing in total to the size of a carriage. It reaches up with its tail and grabs at Sirocco to try to yank her off!

[1d10+2]

>>710477
Juniper reciprocates the hug warmly, a bit relieved to see that you have all your marbles after all. "Oh, enough with all this talk of repaying me! Say an extra prayer for me at the shrines if you feel so indebted," she says with a good natured laugh. "Now, be off with you, and be safe! I shall not forgive you if you die after all I've done to help."

She helps you to stand, and once it's clear you're able to press on, she lets you leave. You exit the building, finding yourself in a small village comprised of several log cabins. The village is centered around a great fountain with a statue of a large breezie at the top, who pours water out of a vase. Several people are out and about, going about their business, and clouds lightly dot the sky. It's about early afternoon.

William floats behind you, tapping his hoof expectantly, which… somehow makes a noise despite him not tapping a physical surface.

Roll #1 10 + 2 = 12

 No.710483

>>710482
"Well hol-ee hell." He calls out the the Pegasus "Sirocco, get away from it! It's just scared!"

 No.710484

>>710482
I get to work in case if it strikes at us.

Trap skill

[1d10]

Roll #1 7 = 7

 No.710485

>>710482
"Jesse you dolt! It's got a pony pinned under its paw! We've gotta heeeelp!" Siro yells as the cat clearly yoinks her off of it, with that perfect 10.

 No.710486

>>710485
"Maybe it's just trying not to starve!"

 No.710487

>>710482
Communion casually strolls with a purpose to an unoccupied street, ducking into a dark alleyway as soon as she is sure she's not being observed.

"OKAY ALREADY!!" she hisses at the wisp. "I JUST woke up. Give me a moment to catch my bearings!!" She sighs, closing eyes and partially melting against the backwall of a shop, or a home, or whatever. She opens her eyes, but only narrowly.

"I'm supposed to believe you were sent by *DAG* ???" She chuckles incredulously, a surface reaction. In fact, she is having a bit of trouble gaining her mental foundation. Whether this is a result of the recent fever, the strange juice she drank or just part of her anxious nature, she cannot decide, but also cannot dismiss entirely the debate.

"Alright, WILLIAM WISP…. if that IS your REAL NAME!!" She does her best to appear threatening. She also cannot think of anything else to say, so remains silent with a comically nonthreatening angry-mime on her goofy, gooey face-protrusion.

 No.710488

>>710482
As much as Pippali'd like to get the shrunken pony to safety, he might as well try and catch Sirocco as she falls! Hopefully he can at least break her fall.
>Catch! [1d10]

Roll #1 8 = 8

 No.710489

>>710486
"It's clearly adept at stealing food! I don't think it needs to EAT PONIES!" Siro yells back, as she continues to dangle from the cat's tail. If she can make an escape attempt, she will.

[1d10]

Roll #1 10 = 10

 No.710490

>>710489
Jesse gives a big sigh and races toward the cat. Gaining speed he attempts to headbutt into the cat's underbelly
[1d10]

Roll #1 1 = 1

 No.710491

>>710485
>>710483
>>710484
The cat grabs Sirocco with its tail and flings her at the party, but she regains her balance in mid-air, slowing enough for Pippali to catch her. Jesse however is not so fortunate, and the cat bats him away with claws extended, slashing open deep cuts on his face and chest.

>Jesse 0/4


The cat snickers, growing even further, until it stands a full ten feet tall, and spirals manifest in its eyes. It scoops up the pony pinned under its paw, then climbs up onto one of the lower mushroom-trees above it. It then reaches out with it free paw, knocking a mushroom tree over, causing it to fall toward your party. The tree is partly caught by Soft Talon's trap as it falls, slowing its trajectory. Roll dodge, instant, DC 5 from the trap.

Seeing this, Candelabrum shoves Suncatcher out of the falling tree's trajectory, and slashes at the giant mushroom with his halberd to try to break it into pieces. "Look out! Grab that guy the cat's got! And grab my lunch if it's still got that too!"

[1d10+2] Shatter, lowers DC for dodge by 1 if successful

[1d10] his dodge

>>710487
William stumbles as you initially shout at him, clearly not expecting such an explosive reaction out of someone who just woke up from a several day long fever. Once you're done ranting, however, he waits to see if there's more. "Alright? Oh, so you will work with me, great! As I was saying, yes, I was sent by the Reckless Flame, Dag. He wants to see you succeed on your pilgrimage, so you should rejoice and all that. You're kind of like a chosen one if you wanna think of it that way. Are you feeling well enough to get going? Cause we're actually gonna backtrack first if you are."

Roll #1 7 + 2 = 9 / Roll #2 8 = 8

 No.710492

>>710491
Siro, now in Pippali's hooves, flaps her wings as she tumbles out of the way, keeping her forelegs wrapped around the zebra at all times. "Sh-Shoot, looks like we know what that spirit did! We've gotta stop it!"

Assuming Sirocco gets out of the way, she'll dash forwards once again, looking to use supersonic to bash into the cat and knock it from its perch.

[1d10] Dodge
[1d10] Supersonic

Roll #1 2 = 2 / Roll #2 5 = 5

 No.710493

>>710491
>Dodge: [1d10]

Hopefully ducking out of the way, Pippali will turn around to aid Sirocco in getting to safety.
>Help Sirocco Dodge: [1d10]

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

 No.710494

>>710491
The extremely pacifist and mostly people-pleasing goo pony has no defense to this tiny, self-assured, complimentary (and quite handsome!) tiny William. As he tells her that she is "kind of like a chosen one if you wanna think of it that way," she tries to pretend that she has not always wanted to think of it that way, but cannot suppress a flush. For a red translucent gooey pony-shaped mass, this manifests as an overall loss of transparency throughout the gooey flesh.

She fights down any attempt to answer prematurely. "What do you mean, backtrack." She eyes him as warily as she can pretend to be while intensely flattered.

 No.710495

>>710491
The stallion flails on the ground with blood trickling out of his mouth

"All right, no more p-playing nice" he whispers

[1d10] Recover from helpless
[1d10] dodge

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

 No.710496

>>710491
I grunt and fly away from the trap and aim for the cat as I move away.

Surveyor trait

[1d10] dodge
[1d10+1] shoot

Roll #1 10 = 10 / Roll #2 6 + 1 = 7

 No.710497

>>710496
>>710495
>>710493
>>710492
Jesse is crushed by falling pieces of mushroom-tree, but crawls out, involuntarily coughing up blood.

>5/3


Pippali, meanwhile, catches Sirocco and dives out of the way of the falling tree, suffering only a glancing blow upon his side as he gets them to safety.

>4/5


Soft Talon escapes the attack entirely, and nails the cat in the side with an arrow, which does not sink very deeply into its fur. Nevertheless, the cat hisses and drops the mouse-sized pony, and starts to slink away deeper into the forest's shadows.

The mouse-sized pony plummets toward the ground, shouting for help as he does. Roll to catch him, instant.

>>710494
"As it turns out, there's a small pilgrim group headed this way that's been through some of the troubles that Juniper's brought up, and Dag thinks that they'll be able to actually do something about it. They aren't the average, run-of-the-mill types, either. They'd be the kind of people you'd hire as mercenaries on a merchant caravan tour, not the types of humble, pious folk you'd expect on a pilgrimage. So, you'll be better off with 'em."

 No.710498

>>710497
Sirocco stops her feathery hug in order to dash on over to the pony and grab him out of midair! If she misses, hopefully someone below her can grab him.

[1d10]

Roll #1 7 = 7

 No.710499

>>710497
Talon takes a dive for the small creature. His goal simple and dire.

[1d10]

Roll #1 10 = 10

 No.710500

>>710497
Pippali brushes Sirocco off and settles her on to the ground, letting out a satisfied whinny. He's confident in her ability to catch the pony, but he's watchful regardless.

"This seems like something we can't really… ignore. But, first and foremost, we must focus on the rescued. Perhaps he can tell us what we need to know?"

 No.710501

>>710497
Jesse attempts to call out for help but he finds actually speaking impossible amidst the coughing fit. Besides this he crawls out of the carnage. He looks back to the cat with a glassy expression and vacant eyes

 No.710502

>>710497
The afterglow of the wisp's words are wearing off slowly. A pilgrim group… that are not pious? She finds this hard to reconcile with her naive worldview. She scoffs, both at this secular viewpoint of a holy group on pilgrimage and at the wisp's casual reference to the Watcher, **Dag** the Reckless Flame.

She is intrigued by the existence of another group of pilgrims, although she doubts his assessment of their faithlessness. "And where is their caravan, these merchant-pilgrims?"

 No.710503

>>710498
>>710499
>>710500
>>710501
Sirocco and Soft Talon catch the pony before he can hit the ground, and he hyperventilates for a few moments in their grasp before he gets his bearings, and settles down a little. He's a pegasus, and by his tattered garb and walking staff, he appears to be a pilgrim just like you. He's got a crazed sort of look about him, and you notice that is forehead and neck are branded with runes. His mane and tail are shaved, and he is gray with light blue eyes and hair.

"Oh… it's gone! It's really gone!" the pilgrim says, standing up with a laugh. "Quite good. Jolly good work, you lot!"

Meanwhile, Suncatcher starts passing out Healing rune-stones for everyone to take.

>>710502
"Uh, wait, let me check…" William looks up and off to the side a little. "Uh-huh. Yeah. Really? Interesting, okay."

He looks down at you again. "Looks like they're in the mushroom forest south of here. Under ordinary circumstances, we could just wait here for them, but some druids have set up illusions and traps on the road between here and the forest. We'd better get going and meet them partway to help guide them out. Otherwise, they won't be able to make it to the third shrine."

 No.710504

>>710503
"So who are you?" I ask the new pony.

 No.710505

>>710503
Sirocco gently pats the little poner, and holds him up in her hoof to be eye level with everyone, so they can hear him better. "Yeah, what happened, lil guy? Guessing that cat made you tiny, right?"

 No.710506

>>710503
"You got some explainin' to do little guy. Mostly who are you, what happened, and why did it happen"

 No.710507

>>710503
Communion blinks and shakes her head. She doesn't know if she's going crazy, or has been crazy, or what. This is the first she remembers having a persistent hallucination, though she's certainly experienced visions before. At the thought, the most recent vision, that of a civil war coupled with a rip in the veil that separates Albion from Sidhe, returns in a flashbulb moment of clarity. A chill runs down her spine. She swallows the dread visage summoned, returning it to the vague unease from whence it came.

Being forced into the company of this comically small fiery pegasus is far from the worst thing that could happen to her. At this moment, she finally chooses to accept him. "Fine. Are you coming with me the whole way?" She begins to stretch her limber form out. At first she stretches in the way a normal pony would, then stretches her mass as high as she can (its about 10 meters) and then pools herself out as much as she can (it covers the whole block in a thin layer of reddish clear goo, except for where she started from. In that spot there is a silver chalice, somehow constantly overflowing with the red goo that makes up her body) before reforming as a single pony, the edges slightly more defined than they were a moment before.

"What are we waiting for, then?" she abruptly states, and takes off walking with a purpose.

 No.710508

"Yes, what happened? This seems an unusual occurance…"

 No.710509

>>710508
>>710506
>>710504
>>710505
"I no longer have a name," the pony says, a lot more casually than the average person would. "I am one of the Branded, which should be good enough for the purposes of general conversation."

Suncatcher stiffens at the word, while Candelabrum looks at the pony with suspicion. "I'm guessing that's why you couldn't regain your balance and stop yourself from falling just now, right?" he asks.

The Branded nods, pulling back his left with with his hoof. There are two metal spikes that appears to have been driven into the wing near the base so as to keep it from being able to expand properly. "That's right. I'm a former death-row inmate. Anywya, the cat stole my size through the magic of its bite. It shrunk me down to mouse size, I presume, to play with me. You, on the other hand, it'll probably shrink until you just plain vanish out of this world."

>>710507
Several townspeople, who notice the display, stop and stare with curiosity, apparently questioning whether they should have helped you as they have no idea what you're up to. William looks on with mild amusement and interest. When it's all done, he nods. "Yup, I can't go back until this is all done, so we're stuck with each other. I'll hide my presence to keep people from asking the same old question about me. I'll try not to bug you too often so that you don't look like you're talking to yourself in public like a weirdo."

He floats after you as you head southward along the road that runs through the town. The town's guards open the gates for you, allowing you to pass through out on the road toward the hills south of town. Roll two navigation rolls.

"So, who are you, exactly? They didn't give me the full dossier before they told me to hit the road. They just gave me the name and face and threw me out before I could even ask why they chose you."

>Paused

 No.710510

pulling back his left wing*

 No.710628

Sheets. Also, reply to >>710509

There will be no recap considering how recent the previous session was.

 No.710629


 No.710630

>>710509
"Death row eh? Care to explain what ya did?" He asks giving a dirty look

 No.710631


 No.710632

>>710509
"Well, goodness, what are you doing out here if you're supposed to be… well, dead?" Sirocco gives the little guy no more pats, but she does continue to hold him up so he can talk to everyone.

 No.710633

>>710509

Communion smiles kindly to the gaping townspeople as she passes. She stops to speak with the guards as she exits the town.
"I am headed a short distance and will return soon with ..friends." Her eyes flick to William Wisp for a moment, then back. "I owe the people of this town a great debt, one I plan to repay."
She takes a new eye to her subjects. Their armor is polished neatly, their discipline precise. She nods approvingly, meeting eyes with each one. "You are appreciated," she says simply, but with powerful conviction.
The Good Word [1d10+3]

As she leaves the town, the gate pulling closed behind her, she looks back, vowing to repay the village of Spindle for their kindness.

Her attention finally turns to the loud and constant chatter of William Wisp. She has been trying her best to ignore his chattiness, but it's been hard, and she has cracked a grin several times at his irreverent quips. She needs to work on her poker face.
Once they are well away from town and anyone else she can see, she begins with deflection. "I'm but a faithful pilgrim. It's never been about me, it's about the journey.
"Tell me about yourself. How old are you? Where do you come from? Where is home for you? Why are you following me?" She is full of questions, but is content to listen to anything her new small friend has to say.
She is a good listener.

They begin down the path together, chatting like old pals.

Navigation [1d10] [1d10]

Roll #1 6 + 3 = 9 / Roll #2 2 = 2 / Roll #3 7 = 7

 No.710634


 No.710635

>>710509
https://pastebin.com/UtJCKZgu

"So will you be joining us?" I tilt my head.

 No.710636

>>710509
https://pastebin.com/XaEsRSrE

"Well, that's rather troubling. Is there some sort of way to counteract this magic, or is it just 'avoid getting hit'?"

 No.710637

>>710636
"I haven't discovered it yet, but in my experience, any magic can be undone in some way. Doing so usually requires working backwards, so to speak. So a magic that steals something can be undone by taking it back. I know not how to do it, but I'll play it by ear."

>>710630
"Murder," the Branded says. "Murder in the name of releasing people held against their will without justification, conviction or sentencing by a court of law – and who were subjected to unlawful slave labor."

>>710632
"I'm on pilgrimage to obtain the pardon of the gods and the miracle that is said to be bestowed upon those who visit all eight shrines, of course!" the Branded says.

"Wow, what a coincidence," Candelabrum deadpans. "Same as us."
"Blimey, lad, what do you expect to find on a pilgrimage route? Pilgrims? It's like being surprised to find Saddle-lock in the library's mystery section!"

>>710635
"If you will have me, I would be pleased to join," the Branded says.
Suncatcher looks very hesitant at the idea. "What? Oh… no, we couldn't! W-we'd just slow you down, you sound like you're skilled at… violence."
"Oh? You care not for my company?" the Branded asks in the same way that one might ask about a preference for tea or water.

>>710633
"743 this year," Will answers when asked about his age. "As for the rest of it, I'm afraid I'm not…" he rolls his hoof, fishing for the words. "… not at liberty to say, you understand. You're but a young druid, and one belonging to a rival religion to boot. If there's anyone to keep Secrets from, it'd be you!" he says with a boisterous laugh.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zYuEh0L4-0g

As you go down the path, you eventually come to the edge of the mushroom forest a little distance south of the aforementioned checkpoint. From your earlier journey prior to your sudden illness, you recall that the path within is fairly straightforward, apart from some hills and rivers, the paths for which are clearly marked.

However, as you proceed down the path, you find that it is much different than what you remember. The path now winds in a snakelike pattern, through shadows and dimly-lit patches of forest, the light blocked out by the canopy of tree-sized mushrooms above.

Eventually, you come to a fork in the road, split by the presence of a wide and steep hill that looks too difficult to climb. Will doesn't seem worried, but he also seems to be following your lead, and looks to you for direction.

 No.710638

>>710637
He flashes the Branded a smile.
"Now that's somethin' worth dyin' for. Ya did good" He says and tips his hat in reverence

 No.710639

>>710637
"We certainly do have a lot of people, as long as you provide don't impede the pilgrimage stranger." -I shrug-

 No.710640

>>710637
Communion eyes the fork. "Doesn't seem like we can climb this hill. Left or right?" She looks to William momentarily. When he doesn't seem to have an opinion, she blurts, "Oh, you're no use!" and storms off down one of the paths. Better to have movement than inaction, after all.

 No.710641

>>710637
>>710640
Navigation [1d10]

Roll #1 2 = 2

 No.710642

>>710639
"Well sorry to tell ya this but we can't get much use out of a 3 inch tall pony"

 No.710643

>>710637
"Alright, noted. I don't think I have a way to undo it personally, so… I'll hope we can figure out how to handle that later on."

At the mention of the Branded also being a pilgrim (and possibly not being as bad as one might expect a murderer to be, he offers a somewhat friendlky smile "I suppose we can stick together for a bit, then. We're on the same route."

 No.710644

>>710637
Sirocco keeps her hoof still as she tilts her head in thought. Magic that takes size, a giant cat, and a murdering pilgrim? Definitely an odd combo. "I'll not pass judgement one way or the other on your murder, since I don't think that's my place, especially since I wasn't there. Personally, I have no objections if you wish to accompany us, especially since your size means you won't be a burden. Until we fix you, of course! And… well, I'm not really surprised to find a pilgrim on the path, but I am surprised that they allowed you to venture it when you were imprisoned for what they saw as so heinous a crime. Will those…" She gestures towards her own wings, and then to his. "Ever heal? Perhaps some kind of magic could fix you once you find pardon?"

 No.710645

>>710643
*friendly, closed parenthesis after be

 No.710646

>>710644
"They are imbued with Bound Rune power, same as the ones on my head and neck," the Branded explains. "I'd have to find a Druid willing to release the Rune before I can even think about removing them. Certainly, I won't find one who will do so, even after I have obtained pardon, unless I'm willing to go to the Land of the Hearth. The mere sight of these brands would drive off most onlookers."

He laughs. "Taking these bars out now – the magic would activate, and there'd be nothing left of me but a smoldering pile of clothes!"

>>710644
>>710643
>>710638
>>710639
The Branded smiles. "I thank you for your welcome. Once I'm back to my full size, I'll pay back your help. Sadly, I won't be of much help until we've tracked down that cat."

Suncatcher and Candelabrum share a look between them, and then at the Branded. "Why not let me hold him, Sirocco? Perhaps he'd be… safer in my grasp, if you get my meaning."

>Roll perception when ready to move on and look for the cat.


>>710640
"I'm no use!? You're the one who's supposed to have been down this way!" Will retorts. "I can barely keep track of the ever-changing twists and turns in the Sidhe, and the mortals are supposed to be in charge of the mortal world! Didn't you come down this way?"

Seeing no immediate visible difference between the two paths, you head down the left path, curving around the steep hill. This path is quite hilly and bumpy, a little tough for going, but safe enough. However, the mushroom-trees become more dense and closely-clumped together, making the path narrow between them, as less and less light is able to get through. Will floats along you, providing light with the glow of his flame, but the darkness is thick enough to feel.

In time, however, you become aware of a long-off running, rapid and soft in sound, as well as the annoyed and angry growling of some monster in the darkness. You can't see the source through the darkness, but you can hear that it's somewhere ahead of you. Will floats closely to you, raising a hoof for silence as he looks around the landscape. Roll perception.

 No.710647

>>710646
Candelabrum is the one asking to hold onto the Branded.

 No.710648

>>710646
"Alrighty." I say to myself as I go to the air to look.

Survival: spot check rolls +3. Can create and forage for basic supplies like rope, bandages, tents, torches and low-quality meals. Can see far into the distance and can see if dim or night light.

[1d10+3]

Roll #1 6 + 3 = 9

 No.710649

>>710646
"Oh don't worry we'll find it. That cat's pushed his luck and lost my pity" he coldly says and looks to where the cat ran off. He recalls to when he saw those eyes. The eyes of a scared being ready to kill. Jesse was deeply familiar with those old eyes, the one's that'll kill you with just a stare

 No.710650

>>710649
[1d10+2] Perception

Roll #1 8 + 2 = 10

 No.710651

>>710646
Annoyed by William's nonstop chatter, she looks around. Didn't she come this way..? Nothing really seems to look familiar. Where the heck is she, anyway??

Her heart drops as she hears something. Her immediate impulse is to hide, and immediately melts into a puddle.
She pokes an eye and an ear out at the end of the puddle. Perception [1d10]

Roll #1 1 = 1

 No.710652

>>710646
"G-Goodness! Well, should you wish it, I'd be happy to help you find someone willing to remove those once we finish our journey. I couldn't… well, I can't imagine living without my wings." She half-whispers, almost apologetically.

The mare lifts the Branded up slightly higher, and looks quizzically between him and the two offering to carry him. "I'm… not sure I get your meaning, but if you wish to carry him, I won't protest. Becomes a bit hard to whack things when I'm balancing somepony on my hoof!" With a smile, the pegasus holds her hoof out to Candelabrum and Suncatcher, offering the small lad to them.

Once all is settled, she'll take her place by Pippali, and search for the cat.

[1d10]

Roll #1 2 = 2

 No.710653

>>710646
"Well, that's rather rough then, man." the zebra says, with a bit of a frown. "I don't really know much of anything about these runes, but I'm sure we can find someone who'll be able to help."

>Perception [1d10+1]

"Well, that's perfectly understandable. Speaking of which, let's find that cat…"

Roll #1 7 + 1 = 8

 No.710656

>>710653
>>710648
>>710649
>>710650
>>710652
Candelabrum takes hold of the Branded, and notably trails behind the party a little as you set off in search of the cat. The forest grows gradually more dense as you head into it, but there remains enough mid-day light coming down from above that you don't require torches for the moment. You proceed along like this for some time as the path winds around, taking on a snake-like pattern through the mushroom-trees, over hills and into low valleys, but ultimately heading due north.

Along the way, your spotters keep finding claw marks in the dirt and in the trunks of the mushroom-trees, marking where the cat has been. You cross a narrow bridge that heads over a river, when suddenly you hear the faintest wisps of an annoyed growling in the forest beyond you, in a clump of mushroom-trees that is so thick and close together that light cannot reach the forest floor, thus blocking your line of sight.

>>710651
Far-off ahead and above you, in a nook created by overlapping mushroom-tree heads, you spot a very long and large black cat, its body five feet wide and ten feet long, skulking with an annoyed growl coming from its throat. It's got an arrow in its side, and clenched in its jaws is a dryad Aos Si, her body spectral and green with the telltale aura of a creature from the Sidhe. She seems to be "alive," or at least as alive as a spirit creature can be, but is helpless in the cat's jaw.

The black cat sniffs at the air, then sets the dryad down, pinning her with a giant paw. As she leaves the black cat's jaw, she starts to shrink, and you can see small wounds in her back where the cat's teeth sunk into her. The cat continues to smell, and it's not a far cry to think that it's smelling you.

 No.710657

>>710656
"Well looks like it's time to go exploring" he comments and slowly moves toward the growling. Drawing his gun he's ready for another large creature to assault him. Pushing his way through the thicket he listens and looks for any signs of life
[1d10+2] Perception

Roll #1 6 + 2 = 8

 No.710659

>>710656
Communion freezes at the sight of the giant predator. She surreptitiously splits off a bit of herself into a small puddle along with the silver chalice that acts as her catalyst while trying to remain motionless. When she is a bit more confident, she flows through the undergrowth smoothly and silently as a liquid. She does not approach the cat directly, but attempts to gain a higher ground by flowing up the sides of rocky hills and cliffs.

"Psst! William! Can you do anything about this cat? Can you talk to it? Can you shoot fireballs at it??" She seems worried that the wisp might be totally, completely useless.

 No.710660


 No.710662

>>710656

Sirocco keeps close to the party as they search, as she's not exactly keen on flying into the air when there's a massive cat that could easily leap up and nab her. She's rather unobservant, and she continues to stumble around, not really helping track in any way. It's clear that she's still a little worried about the cat's magic.

Her mind snaps back to reality when she hears the fair growling, and notices Jesse draw his gun. "H-Huh? Oh, great, prepare yourselves, everyone." She huffs through her nose, before creeping towards the tree(mushroom)line, poised to strike.

 No.710664

>>710656
>>710662
Pippali tugs Sirocco close and holds her to his side, helping her avoid too much stumbling around as she's walking. The stallion frowns a little upon hearing the growling, and quickly straps on his weighted gauntlet before pressing onwards.
>1d10+1 (Perception)

 No.710665

>>710664
[1d10+1] (Also, Dynamic Duo on Sirocco, if able)

Roll #1 4 + 1 = 5

 No.710666

>>710656
"Now where is that monster?" I straighten up at the growling.

 No.710669

>>710659
"Talk to it?" Will asks, reducing his flame to a dull glow to hide himself better. He floats behind a tree. "Yeah, but what am I supposed to say to it? 'Stop snacking on that dryad, will ya, Tom?' I don't think a cat that can chow down on its fellow Aos Si so casually is open to debate. We'll probably have to fight it."

>>710662
>>710657
>>710666
>>710665
From this angle, you can't seem to find the source of the growling, though it sounds to be at least somewhat near and a good distance above you. There's a shaking in the heads of the mushroom-trees above you, indicating movement, but the trees are so tightly grouped together that they transfer movement between each other via their overlapping heads. In short, you can't tell where it is, only that it's in the trees above and to the right of you.

Though, Jesse can spot a strange smear of goo slithering slowly up the side of a nearby rocky hill.

 No.710670

>>710669
"Well now, we got ourselves a lead. Looks like the cat found a new gooey snack." he remarks grimly and continues down the trail, following the slime

[1d10+2] Perception

Roll #1 3 + 2 = 5

 No.710671

>>710669
"I think it is nearby." I say to no one in particular.

 No.710672

>>710669

Sirocco nods to Soft Talon, before flapping her wings and taking to the air. She flies under the mushrooms until she can find somewhere to fly up through, even if it takes her to the edge. She tries to direct the others to follow under her, at the least.

 No.710674

>>710669
She doesn't trust herself to reply to the wisp, clutching to the side undergrowth as she is. Fight it?? No way. She doesn't fight. Does she?…

She observes the cat-creature warily. By this point she has taken a height advantage and looks down on the whole scene. She thinks she can probably slip away, but is concerned for the dryad. Terrified or not, she should probably try to help.

Her chalice-bearing otherself slips along the floor of the forest, far below, sticking to shadows. It moves in the direction of the path but not on the path, heading south.

Neither of her shapes are anything but translucent goo flowing silently among the mushroom stalks. She hides, watching carefully, hoping that she will be able to act when the time comes.

 No.710675

>>710672
I go to follow sirocco, taking flight right beside of them.

 No.710676

>>710670
Communion sees a brazen-looking earth pony stalking not-too-silently through the forest, muttering to himself. She watches him warily. Friend? Or foe? Perhaps the owner of the cat? Or maybe its hunter? Hard to tell. Best to wait and see.

 No.710677

>>710676
(( pegasus*** my bad ^^'))

 No.710678

>>710669
>>710670
"Oh, another snack? That's no good at all. How close to snacking on it is the cat?"

 No.710680

>>710678
"Not sure but one thing's for sure. I don't like the look of it"

 No.710681

>>710678
The goo pony notices that the pegasus is not alone. A nervous twitch ripples across her gelatinous surface. She hopes this doesn't mean trouble.

She glances over at William Wisp questioningly.

 No.710682

>>710671
"How insightful," Candelabrum quips, which earns him a disapproving look from the Branded.
The Branded then looks back up at the treeline, squinting studiously at the shifting shadows. "Should be some good eating on it, at that size," he comments idly to himself.

>>710670
>>710678
>>710672
>>710675
>>710674
Jesse follows along on the trail, while Sirocco finds a gap between the myriad mushroom-heads a little distance to the east.

Jesse sees nothing much out of place on the trail before him, but he does suddenly realize that the trail of claw and paw marks has finally stopped, leaving no further indication of where the cat has gone. Upon closer inspection, Jesse is able to get a better look at the goo, seeing that there are now two distinct smears of goo: one on the rock wall to the west, and another moving south just off the path, going a distance past him.

The mobile goo doesn't get far before it sees the party, the rest of whom are behind Jesse, consisting of a crystal pony stallion (Candelabrum), a unicorn mare (Suncatcher), a zebra (Pippali) and a small pony which the crystal stallion holds, another pegasus with a short-cropped mane and tail (the Branded). Immediately, Communion realizes that this must be the group that William told her about, though obviously she doesn't know their names. Will looks at them and nods to Communion.

Sirocco and Soft Talon, while this is going on, break through the canopy of mushroom-trees, and as they scan over to the west, they see the telltale shape of the giant cat crawling out from a crevice made by the overlapping of multiple mushroom-tree heads. The cat does not see them, and perches on top of a mushroom-tree head, its body poised to pounce on something below, which they can easily surmise must be their allies. The cat's about to pounce, unbeknownst to the party, but they have time to act.

 No.710684

>>710682
"I say we take the path with the most goo on it. Should lead us somewhere"

 No.710685

>>710682
Communion forms her chalice-wielding body into a small version of herself and immediately greets the group. "No time to waste, pilgrims!" She immediately understands what William meant when he said they were more suited to mercenary work than pilgrimage, though the question of their devotion would have to wait until they were not in such a dire situation. "There's a dryad who needs help over here!" She takes off running in the much-less efficient, but much more inspiring of followers, pony-shaped form.

Meanwhile, her larger goo-self begins to spread itself out, separating first into 2 equal parts, then another 2 apiece. Her 4 goo-ponents hover overhead, curled around the stalks of 4 tall mushroom-trees somewhere far above the cat and the dryad.

 No.710687

>>710685
"Everyone I think we found our goo thing. Follow it I guess. Be ready for a fight!" he says and follows the mass of goo utterly bewildered about what it's doing here

 No.710688

>>710682
Siro's muscles tense up as she spots the cat. She wasn't quite ready to fight something like that, but she had to, for the Branded, and to guarantee no one else would be subjected to the cat's cruel magic. She quietly signals to Soft Talon, before suddenly dashing forwards, aiming squarely for the back of the cat as she attempts to crash into it. Hopefully she'd be able to knock it off its perch, and onto the ground below!

[1d10] Supersonic

Roll #1 1 = 1

 No.710689

>>710682
"Do we attack together, I will set a trap first." I say as I get to work.

Trap: recharge 1; Starting next turn, first enemy to attack is helpless for 2 turns.

[1d10]

Roll #1 4 = 4

 No.710690

>>710682
>>710685
"Well, that's a clear enough note for me." the stallion says, hurrying off after the GooPony. He's never seen something quite like this, but it did look friendly, so that's a relief.

 No.710692

>>710690
>>710689
>>710688
>>710685
>>710687
As the party follows after Communion's directions, she directs the four of her goo clones to scale the mushroom-trees that surround the mushroom-tree that the cat perches on, which identifies it for the party. At the same time, Sirocco bolts toward the cat, but the cat, just before she can make impact, apparently hears her, indicated by the twitch of its ears, and leaps from the tree before Sirocco can strike it.

On the ground, Pippali, Communion, Jesse and their allies see the giant black cat suddenly leap toward them from its hiding-spot atop one of the mushroom trees. It its paw it grasps a tiny dryad mare, and you can see that she has been shrunk down, indicated by shallow bite marks in her side.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gUKnARapoWs

Everyone who's being attacked needs to roll dodge, instant.

Suncatcher and Candelabrum quickly back up, nearly stumbling over themselves from the surprise attack.

[1d10] S
[1d10] C

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

 No.710694

>>710692
>Duck, Zigga! [1d100]
Regardless of whether or not he tumbles out of the way, the stallion responds with a bodyslam
>[1d10+1] (Slam, Crits on 9+, DC-1)

Roll #1 85 = 85 / Roll #2 4 + 1 = 5

 No.710695

>>710694
>[1d10] (Sorry, doubleclicked)

Roll #1 3 = 3

 No.710696

>>710692
Jesse makes a quick dive in hopes to escape the large feline
[1d10]

Roll #1 9 = 9

 No.710698

>>710692
Chalice-munion almost trips over herself, not expecting to be jumped by the very monster she was hoping to help ambush. Dodge [1d10].

Not knowing what else to do, and not being a particular violent individual, Communion tries to cheer her newfound teammates on. She opens her chalice-munion mouth and sings the first thing she can think of, which happens to be an ancient druid song meant to sooth and calm the Aos Si.
As she begins to sing, the other 4 goo-ponents hanging off mushroom trees join in, making music in their own haunting way.
Inspire (-4 crit range)[1d10]

Roll #1 6 = 6 / Roll #2 9 = 9

 No.710699

>>710692
Siro silently curses as she misses. The pegasus continues her speedy flight, even after zipping past, instead opting to bank to the side and swoop back in for another go. Even if the cat dodged (again), she'd be right in the thick of the fight in an instant.

[1d10] Supersonic. Again.

Roll #1 3 = 3

 No.710700

>>710692
I stay in the air working on my trap to restrain the beastlike cat on the forest floor.

[1d10]

Roll #1 4 = 4

 No.710701

>>710696
After successfully rolling out the way he draws his weapon and immediately takes flight to get an easier shot on the cat

[1d10]

Roll #1 10 = 10

 No.710703

>>710694
>>710696
>>710698
>>710701
>>710700
>>710699
>+2 to all actions next round because of Inspire

Pippali, Jesse and Communion scatter, but Suncatcher and Candelabrum aren't fast enough on the draw, and are flattened by the cat's dive, the force of which knocks them back into the treeline, dazed and stunned for a time. Quick on the draw, Jesse, Sirocco and Pippali unleash their attacks on the cat; the first two fighters strike it with their hooves, but the cat seems to withstand them, holding firm against the strikes. That is, until Jesse shoots it, which makes the cat quite angry. With a hiss, it lashes out at Jesse with its long arm, claws extended.

Meanwhile, the dryad trapped in its other paw tries to crawl away, but is pinned in its grasp.

[1d10+2]

Roll #1 4 + 2 = 6

 No.710704

>>710703
Failing to make the trap I aim for the cat's head from the air I take a shot.

Surveyor: passive; You have keen eyes when flying on high. While flying you can give either an ally or yourself +1 to ranged attacks and skills.

Reflex Shot: recharge 1, requires ranged weapon; Deals double damage as well as suffers double counterattack damage. Can be used while helpless, but on fail while helpless recharge is set to 3.

[1d10+3]

Roll #1 4 + 3 = 7

 No.710705

>>710703
Noticing he got the cat's attention he skyrockets up higher and unleashes a hail of gunfire

[1d5+6]

Roll #1 5 + 6 = 11

 No.710707

>>710703
Gaining a bit of confidence, Communion continues singing the ancient harmony. The other goos reverberate the sound through the woods, and it's almost as if she's singing to the entire world as the forest pauses, silent, and listens to the hymn.

Inspire(-4 crit range)[1d10+2]

Roll #1 9 + 2 = 11

 No.710708

>>710703
With her initial hit not doing too much, Siro just flips in the air, and tries to crack her hoof over the cat's head as she twists in the air.

[1d10+2] Choosing Pippali for Dynamic Duo!

Roll #1 9 + 2 = 11

 No.710709

>>710703
Pippali whirls around on the spot after the beast lands, and follows up the initial strike with a heavy slam from his guantlet.
>Revolving Blade: [1d10+3]

>[1d10+1] (Dynamic Duo Instant)


Roll #1 10 + 3 = 13 / Roll #2 1 + 1 = 2

 No.710711

>>710707
>>710709
>>710704
>>710705
>>710708
Your attacks, powerful as they are, don't sink very deeply into the cat's flesh, instead causing slow ripples across its surface, as if you were watching a rock strike the surface of a pool of water in slow motion. It strikes you as some kind of magical construct, like an astral body if your characters so happen to be familiar with the concept.

The damage is, however, enough to anger the cat further, who swats at Jesse and Pippali, the size of its claws making for a much deeper wound than it would have inflicted normally.

>Jesse 3/5

>Pippali 1/6

This time, it sets its sights on the whole party, lashing out at them twice.
[1d10+2] Pippali
[1d10+2] Jesse

Having gotten up, Suncatcher and Candelabrum run into the action, focusing on the dryad in the cat's paw. Candelabrum runs up to strike the paw holding her, while Suncatcher remains poised to rush in and grab her.

[1d10+2] Candelabrum uses Shatter

Roll #1 10 + 2 = 12 / Roll #2 6 + 2 = 8 / Roll #3 9 + 2 = 11

 No.710712

Forgot to say it but you also get +2 from inspire this round

 No.710713

>>710711
Jesse gets batted out of the air and lands with a hard thud on the ground. Although dazed from the landing he still manages to aim

[1d10+2]

Roll #1 10 + 2 = 12

 No.710714

>>710711
Siro gives the cat one more quick smack before noticing that her attacks aren't really working. With brute forcing it being off the table, Sirocco turns her attention to what her allies are doing. Seeing the cat swipe at her zebra, she quickly flaps over, and attempts to tackle him out of the way of the cat's strike!

[1d10+2] Instant, Dynamic Duo
[1d10+2] Pulling the Zebra outta the way

Roll #1 9 + 2 = 11 / Roll #2 6 + 2 = 8

 No.710716

>>710711
Communion can do little but continue singing. The song ends. She chokes a bit, trying to think of something to say. "Can I get an AMEN?" Somehow the goo-pones transmit a bit of feedback.

She hesitantly begins a second song, the goo-ponents joining in. This one is another ancient druidic hymn, but in modern times has been re-purposed into a children's lullaby.

Inspire (-4 crit range)[1d10+2]

Roll #1 6 + 2 = 8

 No.710717

>>710711
Pippali makes an inspired attempt to duck out of the way of the cat's claws, not too eager to take a hit like that!
>Dodge: [1d10+2]

Roll #1 4 + 2 = 6

 No.710718

Reaching into my bag, I grab a bottle of lightning. I hold it within my claw before chucking it at the creature.

Surveyor: passive; You have keen eyes when flying on high. While flying you can give either an ally or yourself +1 to ranged attacks and skills.

[1d10+3]

Roll #1 6 + 3 = 9

 No.710719

>>710717
(Altering Post)
With little chance of avoiding on his own, the stallion grounds himself and attempts to slam the cat's throat
>Revolving Blade: 4+2=6 (from previous roll)

 No.710720

>>710713
>>710714
>>710716
>>710717
>>710718
>>710719
Soft Talon and Jesse pelt the creature with ranged attacks, while Candelabrum knocks aside the creature's leg. Suncatcher dives in and covers the small dryad with her own body while the cat's distracted. The cat slaps Jesse against a tree, knocking the stuffing out of him.

>Jesse 0/4


The cat slashes at Pippali, but just before its claws can sink deeply into his skin, Sirocco pulls him out of harm's way, and then brings the two of them around to strike the cat in the face together. As the two strike the decisive blow, the cat's body loses its solidity and consistency, and rapidly starts to melt, like a snowman in the sun.

After a few moments of this, the cat's giant body melts completely, and as it does, the Branded and the dryad both return to their normal size. In the middle of the space where the gigantic cat once stood, there is now only a small kitten. It looks up at you with contempt, but there's nothing intimidating or shaming about a kitten's contempt.

The dryad looks around, and Suncatcher is on top of her back, from having tried to shield her earlier. "Oh! It's over! Thank you, pilgrims, that was quite the pickle I found myself in. How can I repay you, travelers?"

Unbeknownst to the rest of the party, William floats out to Communion's side. "Excellent work, chosen of Dag! And I'll bet you can see that your new allies aren't much to sneeze at, eh?"

>Again, only Communion can perceive him.

 No.710721

>>710720
"Im glad that thing…is finally dead" He grunts and takes a moment to catch his breath

"Don't mention it. Ya never told us your name. What is it?"

 No.710722

>>710721
"Not dead, just seemingly harmless now. I am curious what to do with it now." -I tilt my head-

 No.710724

>>710720
Cup-munion glares at William, but doesn't respond. This has become her go-to method of communication with him, and she is settling into the routine of waiting until nobody is looking to shoot a message. Just now she tries to send him the message that she might actually sneeze and blow him away.

Her goo-ponents slide down the trunks of the mushroom-trees and meet up with themselves, but not the cup-munion pony yet. Instead, this new, larger goo pony slides over to the kitten which had been their enemy. She examines it curiously.

"Who are you, then?" she asks, mostly to herself.

 No.710725

>>710722
"As long as I'm not gettin' out of the sky I'm fine"

 No.710726

>>710725
I give a thumbs up

 No.710727

>>710720
Sirocco flaps a little higher into the sky, still clinging onto Pippali. She pulls him close as she gives him a tight hug and spins around, before setting herself, and the zebra, down of the ground. She pays the kitten no mind, besides a single, glaring sideglance tossed idly in its direction. "Oh, thank goodness I grabbed you in time! L-Let's make sure everyone's okay, then I can look at those claw marks."

She goes to give Jesse some help, and pull him up to his hooves, before dusting him off, and turning her attention to the dryad, and the new, gooey newcomer. She watches with pointed curiosity as the goo slide back into the shape of the pony. "Do you think you'll be okay? And you, Ms… goo. What… wait, there are two of you? What are you two?"

 No.710728

>>710721
>>710726
>>710727
Cup-munion looks to her new allies. "Greetings! My name is Communion. I'd love to get to know you, but it seems like someone might be hurt. Let's worry about the wounded before we get too friendly!" She turns to the dryad, concerned.
"Are you alright?" She glances appreciatively at Suncatcher, who shielded the dryad in a dangerous situation. He could have easily perished pulling a foolhardy move like that. Communion blushes a bit, looking him over.

 No.710729

>>710720
>>710727
"Hoo, geez… good save, Sirocco." Pippali says, wiggling his legs as she holds him above the ground for a little. When she settles him on to the ground he leans in to give her a kiss, before wincing a tad from the claw marks on his side. He nods to the two un-shrunken creatures, before saying "N-No problem, really. Happy we could help."

>>710724
"Well, I suppose we're on the same side here- thanks for helping us find the cat. My name's Pippali."

 No.710730

>>710721
It isn't dead, but has shrunk down to the size of a kitten - in fact, it is a kitten. It seems bullets and blades don't matter much to… whatever this creature is. It's evidently some kind of magical beast.

The dryad looks at you funny for a moment. "Oh, a name. Children of the root, like me, don't usually have those. Unlike you mortals, we know who we are and what we're part of. Names just make people act like they're individuals or something. What a silly idea. Just call me Vine if you insist on knowing me by a name."

>>710724
William sighs. "This is getting annoying. I hate to be ignored. A fire should never be ignored; fire's important! Look – if I reveal my presence, will you talk to me in front of the others?"

>>710727
>>710729
"Now that I've got my size back, I'm quite alright," the dryad says. "Events like this are commonplace in the Sidhe."
"The Sidhe? The spirit world?" Suncatcher asks incredulously.
"Yes, that's where we are, aren't we?" the dryad asks.

>>710722
>>710724
The kitten just meows at Communion. It sounds adorable, but the expression on its face suggests that the meow was more like profanity or a racial epithet in exchange for beating it. Alas, only those who can speak cat will know.

>>710728
Suncatcher slides off the dryad's back after realizing she's still atop the dryad. "Oh, I'm not hurt real–" she winces, clutching her side, the pain returning now that the battle is won. "Okay, I lied, I'm hurt."
Candelabrum quickly comes to Suncatcher's side with concern, even though he himself is hurt too. He starts fishing in one of her bags and you can see rune-stones in the bag, indicating that she is a fellow druid.

 No.710732

>>710730
I simply pat the cat on the head-

 No.710734

>>710730
"Well hello..Vine. That's an awfully strange name I gotta say. Anyway you can call me Jesse"

 No.710736

>>710730
She gives a warning look to William, as if to say Dont You Dare. At the same time she wonders why she is so worried about keeping him to herself, but then she also wonders whether he is even capable of manifesting to so many at once. And if so, what he would say, and whether that would go against his so-called "mission" to help her because she was "chosen" by "Dag". She still doesn't fully trust this little fey pony, and so decides, perhaps somewhat rashly, to call his bluff. Besides, she'll talk to him later, and he can just deal with it.

She watches the pony from afar for a minute. She also finds a reason to second-guess her standpoint, just arrived at moments before.

"William, you said you COULD talk to it. Does that mean you actually speak cat?"

 No.710737

>>710730
Communion reforms herself into body again, growing in size accordingly. She stands near the kitten, looking at Suncatcher and Candelabrum's healing runes. They are familiar, but Communion's druid training was not complete when she left home. She wracks her brains to try to recognize them.
Knowledge [1d10]

Roll #1 3 = 3

 No.710738

>>710729
She curtsies politely. "Well met, pilgrim. I suppose you are one of the faithful?" She seems excited to talk about the miracles of St. Orore.

 No.710739

>>710730
"Well- hello, Vine. To my knowledge, we're not in some sort of Spirit World… unless we crossed over unknowingly, somehow.

He looks to Suncatcher in concern, and sets a hoof on her shoulder "Why don't we take a break, then? We could all use a chance to settle down and rest up for a bit." Before he says much else, he cocks his head to the side and asks "What's with those runes? Did you find them somewhere?"

 No.710741

>>710739
>>710730

Communion does a double take. "William, we're not in the Sidhe are we??"

 No.710743

>>710738
"In a way, yeah- we're on the pilgrim's route. This is a bit of a detour, but… probably not too much."

>>710741
"Well, I'd hope not." the large zebra says, frowning a little "I don't know how we'd have gotten there."

 No.710744

>>710730
Siro gives the dryad a pathetic, and pitiful look. She could only imagine being so uppity and presumptuous. "Well, pleasure to meet you, Vine. I'm, uh, glad we got here in time! Though, I'm afraid you're not in Sidhe. This is the real world."

"A-And Suncatcher, please, Pippali is right, we can take a break and tend to everyone's wounds. No use continuing if you're hurt, you know?"

>>710738
"Indeed we are, miss! In a way, as Pippali here said."

 No.710745

>>710736
"Yes, but I've got a good reputation to keep, so I can't repeat what that cat just said. Very foul language coming from that one! There's no need to use such words."

The cat meows, shooting a look at William.

"Now that one was just disgusting," William says to the cat. "You kiss your mother with that mouth?"

>>710737
All you can surmise is that they're healing runes as Candelabrum gently presses some against Suncatcher's side, which magically heal her wounds and then vanish.

>>710739
"I carve them myself," Suncatcher says with obvious reticence.

>>710744
Suncatcher winces. "Yeah, you're right. We should settle down for a spot of lunch too–"
"My lunch!" Candelabrum exclaims, looking down at the kitten.
The kitten burps, revealing the fate of the stolen food. Candelabrum's disappointment is immeasurable.

>>710734
>>710732
>>710739
>>710744
Vine looks around. "That's odd… now that you mention it, it doesn't feel like the Sidhe anymore around here. Just this morning I knew for sure that I was walking around in the Sidhe. I'd just picked up my morning coffee from the breezies and was headed back to have a donut with the ladies' book club. But…" she raises her head. "I can feel barely any magical energy around here. Why, it's positively mundane out here! Ew, it feels like taxes and waiting rooms! No, I don't think you crossed over – I think I crossed over!"
"You and probably the cat here too," Suncatcher says.

>>710741
"Nope; it's as they say. This is the mortal world, but the Sidhe is slipping over into the mortal world around here, much more than normal. That's not good. Even at the normal points of contact between the two worlds, there's never so much overlap that Aos Si can slip over as easily as Vine just described. This doesn't happen if the druids keep the two worlds apart – something must be going wrong on that front, if what she says is right."

>Paused



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