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/q/ - Quest

ADVENTURE!
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File: 1550108024078.jpg (822.54 KB, 1280x1272, 1547415590689.jpg)

 No.711191[View All]

Last time on HolyQuest…

Dawn rose on the fourth day before the Tartarus mission was set to begin. The party has all of today and tomorrow before their expedition begins, leaving them with precious little time to spend with one another, and on their preparations. Power, allies, weapons, spells, potions, scrolls, armor – just forty-eight hours to obtain all they would need before they would descend into Tartarus itself to determine who would rule the new, demon-infested world.

After breakfast, the party returned to Lilane in order to attend Pryce's award ceremony. Pryce had earned the honor of the Star-Blessed Watch in recognition of his twelve years of service as an honorable knight of the Union Church.

Upon returning to Lilane, they were met with a most massive change of scenery. As Chorazin had alluded to yesterday, Metatron had visited Lilane in the night, sending his angels to guard and fortify the city which Ecclesia had claimed as its fortress. They had also apparently healed the injuries of many Ecclesians, who had been scarred, deformed, and had even lost limbs as a result of their battles with demons. Though the Ecclesians were overjoyed at this, the party was more than unnerved because of their previous encounters with Metatron.

Shei remained behind with Mocha, partly in order to take care of various tasks during the morning, and because he was shunned in Lilane for his outburst the previous day (although he was not officially exiled).
589 posts and 1 image reply omitted. Click reply to view.

 No.714394

>>714390
>CD turn 6

"Poison won't work on me," Amy says angrily.

>Jhanna of Uprooting Poison to negate the poison damage [1d10]


Amy opens her mouth wide and unleashes several balls of energy which rotate around her.

>Homing Magic [1d10+2]


When another demon starts approaching, Amy looks over in the direction of the noise. She breathes heavily, then shouts angrily, "I'll kill them all!"

>>714392

"If we can't handle this, then we'll never be able to handle Tartarus," Amy barks back immediately.

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

 No.714396

>>714394
>>714390

>Forgot Nail Beast attack on CD4 [1d10]

>DC4+, hits twice

Roll #1 7 = 7

 No.714398

>>714394
"You'll need to make it to Tartarus first! All our allies will be there, there's no need to throw away everything on a minor battle like this!"
Pryce barks back in a commanding tone.

 No.714400

>>714390
Trapper freezes just for a moment, and turns around.
>>'C'mon, follow me, ya bastard," he thinks, before he goes further back through the tunnel
>runnan
[1d10]

Vice sighs as the presence leaves him, and focuses on making it back to the fork from earlier.

Flow steps back from Renee, and draws out Schlangenschwert.
"Fine then. We'll meet the prick inside."
He hoists Renee onto his shoulder and starts making his way inside.
"We need to meet up with the other lads, and kick this bastard's teeth in."

Roll #1 8 = 8

 No.714404

>>714390
>>714392
>>714394
Flaming lets out a cry of joy as CD 4 is knocked back, but her jaw drops as it comes back for more, "Oh come on, what does it take to KILL these things?!"

When Wireframe's net breaks and the mosquito demons come in, she lets out a curse, "Damn it all, one thing after another… Amy! Pryce is right, we need to re-group inside the tower! Maybe we can funnel them all in there and take away the advantage in numbers, we're too vulnerable out in the open here! Take anyone who's too injured to move and we'll hold up in the tower, these things will die soon enough!"

She says as she looks at the on-coming Mosquito swarm, charging up her ram. "I'm better at dealing with crowds, someone make sure the big ones stay under control and kill the last one if you can!" She says referring to CD 4, while she attacks Mosquito Demon 1 with her headbutt, intent on activating the Circlet to scatter the smaller demons
[1d10+3] All or Nothing

>Retreating into the tower, making sure all who are out here follow


Roll #1 5 + 3 = 8

 No.714405

>>714390
Shei-Sher thrusts his hoof into the air mentally grabbing hold of Wireframe's barrier and forcing the wires to weave and mend together again.

>TINKER: Can repair broken objects, restore negative quality weapons to +0, fix up worn down loot to make it more valuable or get a poorly working mechanism back into shape.

[1d10] Fixing Wireframe's barrier

>I Dream of Alchemy+2: Instant; Thrice per session; Forge a small- to medium-sized object out of a natural elemental source, such as water or earth. If this object is a weapon, it carries the elemental properties* of the material it was made from and is +1 quality on a critical forging roll. Objects made with this skill disappear after a few hours. If this skill is used to make Bits or fake documents, they are obviously counterfeit upon close inspection. Keys made with this skill work just as well as their real counterparts, but break after being used. Forging an object requires access to an amount of source material equivalent in size to the desired object.

[1d10+2] Fixing Wireframe's barrier

Shei's Chimera Demon dances feverishly amid the fight, and howls towards the clouds in the sky. Thunder belows and it seems a tumultous storm is suddenly taking form, where the party is in the eye of.

>Climate Control: Spell; Through your deep connection with nature, you can change the climate in your local area, albeit for a short amount of time. Attempting to summon major storms or other cataclysmic events may backfire horribly. In most cases, using this indoors only affects the climate outside.

[1d10+4] Summon Major Storm that blows away the distant Mosquitos.

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

 No.714406

>>714405
>>714404
>>714392
>>714394
The Chimera Demon knocks back the chakra that fly its way, sending them back into Pryce's grasp. Amy purges the poison damage from within her body, preventing it from destroying anything else within her. CD 4's frantic swings prevent her from being able to charge up more homing magic, but she and the nail beast manage to catch it in a pincer attack. The Chimera Demon swings at both of them, and manages to clip Amy on the side, but she and the nail beast then blast it with magic and needles, reducing it to a bloody corpse at last.

>Amy 2/5


Flaming is able to crush the swarm of mosquito demons that come your way before they can attack, but a great deal more simply rush by you, fleeing whatever it was that caused that explosion moments ago. Several earth-shattering stomps follow, one after the other, signaling a slowly, but steadily, approaching presence. Winds begin to blow, and thick clouds approach from the distance, blowing away several more mosquito demons.

At Pryce's command, the party quickly follow, rushing for the clock tower as the ground quakes beneath them. Pryce's magic restores only a little of the wounded tiger's body. The other tiger tenses and growls, blocking the way to the clock tower as you approach, evidently unsure if you too are predators. From the direction of the stomping, a colossal shadow falls over the plaza, cast by the approaching presence.

[font14]"Back! Back! My hideout! My hideout! Get your own!"[/font14] the tiget snarls, standing before you all. However, only Flaming can understand them.

>>714400
You and the knight rush into the cavern together, proceeding into the mouth of the cave. As Trapper and Vice book it up through their respective tunnels, in short order, they both meet up with Flow, arriving about the same time at the fork. However, the magic presence suddenly vanishes altogether, as if it were never there. The knight looks about, feeling the walls, apparently confused as well.
"It… it stopped?" Renee asks cautiously.

 No.714407

>>714404
>>714398

"Fine!" Amy shouts upon seeing even Flaming retreating.

>Already used instant action, will retreat next turn

 No.714408

Whoops.

[14]"Back! Back! My hideout! My hideout! Get your own!"[/14] the tiget snarls, standing before you all. However, only Flaming can understand them.

 No.714410

How do you do this?

"Back! Back! My hideout! My hideout! Get your own!"[/size14] the tiget snarls, standing before you all. However, only Flaming can understand them.

 No.714413

>>714406
Pryce starts to back, a bit of his gusto waning as the demon smacks his chakram back at him. Looking to see everypony else starting to move towards the tower, he speeds up his retreat as well.

When the tiger snarls and blocks their entrance, Pryce doesn't hesitate. With it still injured, his horn glows as he simply levitates it aside so they cna move past it and enter the tower.
>Telekinesis [Move Tiger] [1d10]

Roll #1 1 = 1

 No.714416

Shei-Sher steps forward "Fuck You!" He shouts at the tiger and then walks through the tower wall.
>Body Without Organs: The spirit and body are now one. Astral projection is instant/automatic and does not leave behind an unconscious body. The Spirit is unfettered and can travel any distance now. The spirit is visible and susceptible to regular combat. Traveling speed is similar to flying.
counts as an instant action

Shei uses his regular action to open up a Dark corridor on the other side of the Tower wall. Effectively creating a tunnel.
[1d10]

CD3 Continues dancing under Shei's control
>Climate Control: Spell;
[1d10+4] keep the mosquitoes from advancing

Roll #1 6 = 6 / Roll #2 7 + 4 = 11

 No.714417

>>714406
As the towering creature finally falls, Flaming lets out a roar of victory, "YES! Okay, that's a good start, get everyone inside and we'll deal with the rest of them later!" She shouts, looking on at the buzzing swarm that approaches them all. However, as the winds begin to blow away other mosquitos, and a massive, stomping shadow looms overhead, Flaming looks up in confusion, "What… what is… is that ANOTHER demon?! I-it must be massive to make footsteps this loud!"

"Okay, everyone get in the tower, barricade the doors!" She stops, however, once the tiger-demons begin growling at them.

With no time to explain, Flaming leaps out in front of Pryce, shouting at the tiger
"Sorry, but we need to borrow it! You're injured, right?! We can heal you, but only if you let us inside! Please!"
[1d10] Making a plea to the tigers to let us by peacefully

Roll #1 1 = 1

 No.714418

>>714406
>>714413
>>714416
>>714417

"I still say we just kill whatever it is," Amy says angrily, her coat still black.

She pops a potion in Pryce's mouth.

>Natural Remedy [1d10+3]


Roll #1 9 + 3 = 12

 No.714420

>>714406
Vice looks around as the presence leaves.
>"Damn…he might've psyched us out…"

Trapper leans down and tries sensing for the magic again.
>>"He probably left through that waterfall."
He bumps Vice and beckons him to go through the path he took.
Before Vice follows, he gives Flow back his coat.

"Aye lads, we'll go through the other tunnel…I don't know if we have the element of surprise anymore…"
Even still, Flow tries to be as cautious as he can while navigating through the cave.
[1d10]

Roll #1 4 = 4

 No.714422

>>714418
Pryce nearly gags as the potion is suddenly thrust in his mouth. He pulls it out in a coughing fit, giving Amy a look.
"What was that for?!"

 No.714424

>Pryce fully healed

>>714418
>>714417
>>714416
>>714413
The lead tiger snarls and tenses as Flaming tries to reason with it, and as Pryce tries to move it, but Shei is able to get past them with his power, and open a corridor to the other side, allowing the others to get through. At first, your allies have pause at the presence of the two tigers, as they are much larger than normal tigers, and of course are demons. But, when Shei opens the corridor, they quickly scoot through.

Seeing this, the tiger that stood guard at the entrance growls, but as the stomping gets louder, it grips its companion by the scruff of the neck and drags it inside, through the clock tower's massive front doors.

The dark corridor deposits everyone on a small balcony area just slightly above ground level. The clock tower is an enormous structure, stretching upward a great distance, which eventually ends in an immactuately decorated ceiling, richly illustrated with iconography of holy warriors and priests, bearing scrolls of power, surrounded by calligraphy in a language you don't recognize. There are many floors to the clock tower as you can see, connected by wooden spiral staircases and the first floor appears to have been dug partly into the ground, as it's lower than the ground outside.

>>714420
As you head down the leftmost tunnel, Vice and Trapper note that the purple glowing mushrooms no longer glow, leaving the tunnel completely dark. For lack of a light source, the knight draws forth a small glowstone from his pouch, affixing it to his belt. The light is faint, illuminating only a few feet before you on all sides.

Eventually, something taps your shoulder.

 No.714427

>>714422

"You were hurt."

>>714424

"So, now what?" Amy asks like an annoyed child. Her coat fades slightly, but is still darker than usual.

>>714416

Amy kneels in front of Shei and looks at his missing limb. "Can we fix it?" she asks with concern.

 No.714428

Health fix.

 No.714430

Would like to Opt for my controlled Chimera Demon to come through the dark corridor as well please.

>>714427
Shei lowers his bag to the ground opening it, showing how it's become a gelatinous mold of his arm. "What do you think.."

>>714424
>>714422
"Pryce -Pryce try healing it. Heal the arm. Like you did with all us before. Maybe it will revert." Shei exudes hollow desperation

Ready to use Alchemy on reverting arm when Pryce heals it.
>I Dream of Alchemy+2: Instant; Thrice per session; Forge a small- to medium-sized object out of a natural elemental source, such as water or earth. If this object is a weapon, it carries the elemental properties* of the material it was made from and is +1 quality on a critical forging roll. Objects made with this skill disappear after a few hours. If this skill is used to make Bits or fake documents, they are obviously counterfeit upon close inspection. Keys made with this skill work just as well as their real counterparts, but break after being used. Forging an object requires access to an amount of source material equivalent in size to the desired object.
[1d10+2]

Roll #1 7 + 2 = 9

 No.714431

>>714430

"Y-yes?" Amy asks genuinely and hopefully.

 No.714432

>>714424
>>714430
As the tiger tenses up and snarls at Flaming, Flaming growls back, "Come ON! This isn't the time for you to be stubborn, your friend's hurt and we can help him. Let us in-"

As the stomping gets louder, Flaming looks back in fear, wondering just how close the creature is, before looking over at Shei walking through the walls of the tower, causing her to open her eyes in surprise. "What the-!" Then, as Shei opens up a Dark Corridor for them all inside, Flaming's surprise is replaced by relief, and she races through the tunnel, shouting, "EVERYONE IN!"

She looks back at the tigers guarding the door as they find themselves going inside, giving them one last look as though to say 'come on' before theycome through the clock tower's massive doors. Flaming moves to lock them, and after taking in a quick look of the interior, shouts out, "Okay, is everyone inside, no one left behind?!"

>>714427
Flaming takes a look at Amy's pitch black cloak, frowning. "We'll get him fixed up, Amy… River had less limbs than he does now, and she got them back."

>>714413
>>714430
She turns to Pryce and Shei, "Good call for us to go inside, Pryce, I think things were getting too much for us out there… Shei," she frowns, looking at the remains of the arm, mournful for Shei's loss. "I'm sorry… how are you feeling?"

 No.714433

>>714431
>>714422
Shei simply grimaces at Amy's response and then looks to Pryce his face pleading him to heal the arm

 No.714434

>>714424
>>714418
>>714417
>>714416
Pryce is the last to go through the corridor, making sure everypony else made it through fine first. He stops only when the corridor closes, finally breathing as they have a moment to relax. He sets his chakram and spears against the clock tower's wall, and finally let's Lockjaw free from his robe, now that he doesn't need ot shield his pet from the demon's onslaught. He looks up at the immense height and decoration in the ceiling. If it wasn't for the threat of demons and the destruction they fought through, this might be a good moment.
"Is everypony ok?"
Pryce asks the group as everypony recovers.

>>714427
"I'll be fine, you should worry about everypony else first."

>>714430
Pryce looks to Shei, his eyes lingering on the stump of his forelegs still on his body.
"Shei, are you feeling fine enough for now? The magic stopped the bleeding at least, right?"
He asks, stumbling over his words as he hasn't seen a grave injury like this since the last horrible event.

He looks down at the arm, and nods.
"I'll try my best."
He says in a serious tone, horn glowing white as he sends a pulse of soothing magic over Shei and the arm to try and help his friend.
>Commandment of Balance [Auto]

"You showed a lot of bravery out there, still managing to act after losing a limb. I've seen a few knights act far worse over far less."
He says, mostly trying to keep up morale, possibly for his own sake.
"…When did you learn to pass through walls?"

>>714432
"I thought we would've had it. But when that explosion went off… We couldn't face everything all at once. We might need to wait for it to walk by before leaving this tower."
Pryce says, the tiniest hint of fear residing in his voice.



>>714424
When the healing and checking is done, Pryce walks over and sits down next to Zjetya.
"Are you alright?"
He asks with deep concern.

 No.714435

>>714433
>>714432
>addendum
"And… how did you get into the tower? It looked like you just went right through the stone. You can do that now?"

 No.714436

>>714424
>>714430
>>714434
Pryce's horn also casts a golden light on Shei's arm, attempting to stabilize whatever poisons and infections that got inside and hopefully keep it secure.
>Mantra of Purity [1d10]

Roll #1 2 = 2

 No.714437

>>714427
Everyone takes a moment to catch their breath and collect themselves now that they're apparently safe from the threat, but a chill passes through the room as they hear more and more stomps and cracks coming from outside. Though they've been rejuvenated by your powers, each of them looks mentally worn out, even, somehow, Box, who is usually the most upbeat out of all your current allies. In a short period, the stomps slow and eventually stop, though nobody around you relaxes, evidently expecting things to get worse.

>>714432
>>714430
"M-maybe you could get a replacement built!" LJ suggests, grossed out by the annihilated arm. "Clockwork technicians among Buiwong's cultists often made simple prosthetics for those among us who lost limbs during our expeditions into unknown lands.
"I'd offer to sew it back on, but that thing's long gone," Wireframe says grimly.

>>714432
>>714434
The party looks around, and do a quick head count. It looks like everyone's been accounted for, but mentally exhausted and shaken by the sight of Shei's limb being destroyed. Lockjaw softly shivers within Pryce's robe, not wanting to come out.
Zjetya, meanwhile, takes a seat a little distance from everyone else, and has a moment to breathe. She tenses a little as Pryce comes over, wringing her forehooves to keep them from shaking. "Well, we won pretty handily, alright, but damn… they wouldn't give up, would they? Even after all we did to cut them down left right and center."

Tantra looks over at Flaming. "How about you? I was busy being mobbed by the little ones and couldn't keep an eye on your battle."

>>714436
That scrap of flesh and bone looks beyond anyone's capacity to save.

>>714430
You reattach your arm to your stub of a shoulder, but it is dead, and cold, nonfunctioning. It drips ichorous blood and dead flesh, and the bones are dissolved and visible in patches. The rest of the party looks on in abject disgust, except for Volkama who seems to get a kick out of it. "Put a little ice on it, that should help."

>Paused

 No.714438

>>714434
>"…When did you learn to pass through walls?"
"What do you mean? What kind of cripple can't walk through walls." He says in a faux caustic tone, but it's obvious he's trying to draw levity from the situation.

 No.714440

>>714434
Flaming looks to Pryce as she checks over her wounds, nodding her head. "Y-yes, I think so. Just, exhausted… those things just wouldn't let up, there were so many of them. I think we can take out the rest but, we just need to breath first and… let whatever that *thing* was out there. I couldn't see it, could you?"

 No.714442

>>714438
"Heh, right, what was I thinking. That was a pretty nice trick though, might come in helpful."
Pryce says with an awkward chuckle.

 No.714444

>>714440
"I couldn't either, I could only hear its steps."
Pryce replies grimly.
"And this was only one part of this city. I can't imagine what else is out there, or what magic Regina has to keep them at bay."

 No.714445

>>714424
All of the goos grow increasingly uneasy as the mushroom's faint glow no longer helps them.
Although Vice can somewhat remember the path, the odd lighting discomforts him, and his eyes dart around nervously.

As soon as something touches his shoulder, Flow spins and tries grabbing whoever touched him without prior warning.
>grabban
[1d10+2]

Roll #1 6 + 2 = 8

 No.714446

>>714444
"I wouldn't worry about Regina took much: she keeps them at bay, we're throwing ourselves into the thick of it. There's a difference in how much effort one takes versus the other. Still, yeah, I'm surprised just how persistent these ones are, there were tons of them… finding that treasure isn't going to be easy in all this."

She looks towards the tigers, before asking Pryce, "Hey, Pryce… can I ask a favor?"

 No.714447

>>714446
"Yea… though it still takes an immense effort to keep this many demons at bay."

Pryce looks to Flaming.
"What is it?"

 No.714450

>>714447
"The tigers… I can understand them." She points towards a brooch on her neck with her hoof, "The little you was there for it, but you weren't: when we got through the Temple of Slipper, looking for that hidden vault of old Sons of God stuff? One of the things in there was this: it's a brooch that lets me understand animals. The mosquitoes were nothing but rage and violence… but the tigers there seem more reasonable. I think this is their home. If you can heal them, I think I can convince them to help us take out the rest of the bugs."

 No.714451

>>714450
Pryce looks down at the brooch.
"That's quite a treasure you found."
He glances over at the tigers for a second, then back to Flaming.
"If you say so, I shall. But… I think I'll wait until we all recover a bit, just to be safe."

 No.714471

>>714437
Feeling Lockjaw shiver, Pryce keeps him in his robe, upset at seeing his once ferocious (for it's size) pet scared. Pryce sits beside Zjetya, placing Lockjaw in his lap, pulling up a piece of meat for him to snack on while giving him some consoling pets.
"I haven't seen that many demons since Circadia, but those even seemed to have an end."
He comments, silent for a moment before turning to Zjetya, looking at her hooves.
"You didn't get injured or anything, did you? You don't need to hide anything here."
Pryce ask in concern.

 No.714472

>>714471
Lockjaw sits on your lap, stiff and anxious and alert, not reacting much to your petting or to the strips of jerky you offer him. He looks about this way and that, clearly fearful for another wave.

"I got cut and scraped and bruised pretty badly trying to hold the wave off you guys in the vanguard," Zjetya says, "But I'm alright now after that big wave of healing magic you and Amy used. It's just…" she shudders, her hooves slowing. "I got an eyeful the moment that swarm chewed Shei's arm right off."

 No.714473

>>714472
"It's okay little guy. No more demons will be getting in here."
Pryce whispers to Lockjaw to help ease his deviljho.

"That's a relief. You… it's typically been worse in past excursions."
Pryce says, wondering if that was a good thing to say partway through. He looks up from her hooves, giving a glance over at Shei a moment.
"It won't be happening again. I swear that I'll keep everypony else safe while we're here."
Pryce states, though while his tone has concern to settle her worries, it carries regret at letting it happen to begin with.

 No.714474

>>714473
Slowly, Lockjaw relaxes his posture, becoming more calm. He hops off of your lap and trots over to Zjetya, inspecting her wings. Zjetya glances his way, scratching the underside of his chin softly.

"It's not that I don't have faith in you, but we need to be realistic," Zjetya says. "I was thinking about what Blessings was saying to us back in Vitral, that we were lucky that the only demons we've faced so far have been weak enough for us to handle. We ended up alright at the end there, but only because you and Amy dropped your strongest powers on us. If there'd just been a few more of the bigger demons there, we could've ended up even worse off – someone getting kidnapped or killed, even."

 No.714475

>>714474
Pryce smiles as Lockjaw relaxes and starts to walk around with his old curiosity.

"I know. At the start of that fight, I didn't think it was going to be any issue. …I hesitated when we took a few bad hits. I thought we could fight through it, I was cocky."
He glances down at his medal.
"I wasn't much of a knight there."
When Zjetya mentions somepony could've been taken or killed, Pryce hangs his head for a moment. He takes a breath, the possibility a reality that he doesn't want to acknowledge. There's a moment of silence.
"I don't want you fighting if another wave of demons comes at us."

 No.714476

>>714475
After getting his share of scratches from Zjetya, Lockjaw turns your way, and nudges you with his chin. "He's a little demanding, isn't he?" Zjetya jokes.

She listens to your concerns about the fight, and twists her mouth. "Cocky? Seriously? We're a small army, Pryce, it shouldn't be any trouble for us to deal with most demons we'd come across. These ones had to pull out all the stops before we started to get overwhelmed. We can hold out own, so we have a right to be confident – and I don't wanna hear about you not being much of a knight, not when you got some good hits in."

She then looks shocked as you tell her not to fight. "Wh… I can't promise that. I need to carry my weight when things get ugly."

 No.714477

>>714476
Pryce reaches down and gives Lockjaw some scritches at his demand, as well as the piece of jerky he didn't take earlier.
"I think he believes he's the owner here."
Pryce chuckles.

"When I was in training, we were told never to underestimate our foe. Myself especially, with my magic I should be changing how I fight to how they act. I could've healed earlier to prevent us from getting hurt as we did. I should've done more than trying to cut them down before they cut us down."
Pryce says, his tone changing from guilt to more self-scolding in review. He looks back up as Zjetya tells him to not say how he isn't' a knight.
"Today just… hasn't been that great."

"I want you to promise it."
Pryce says sternly.
"I've already seen you nearly lose a limb twice now. I can't let it happen a third time. Or worse."
Pryce chokes out that last word, not wanting to humor the thought.

 No.714478

>>714477
Lockjaw takes the piece of jerky, slowly chewing it. He lays across your lap, setting his full weight on you as he gnaws his treat.

Zjetya rubs her head as you go over your critique. "It's easy to say all this after the fact, isn't it? Of course you can see now what you 'should' have done, but during the battle, you have to trust your gut and go with what seems best for the situation, don't you?" She shrugs. "It's good you're learning from what you saw, but I think you've accomplished more than enough for you to have the benefit of the doubt. Hell, that disaster we were dealing with in the Birdcage should prove that by itself."

Zjetya reflexively touches the leg she nearly lost trying to save the baby monsters who had taken up residence in the Tree of Red Lacquer. "And what if someone else would get hurt if I didn't fight? I can't just let the same thing happen to them! Please, I don't understand, why can't I fight alongside everyone all of a sudden?"

 No.714479

>>714478
Pryce leaves Lockjaw where he lays, letting him gnaw in piece and petting his back.

"That's what I'm getting at. I should have the instinct to adapt, but I didn't. Instead I stuck to trying to force through the fight and it didn't work out. An even then I still kept at it until I called for us to retreat."
Pryce stops for a moment, exhaling to try and relax himself.
"I must just be shaken. The Birdcage was the first large conflict I've been in, and now everything will be like that."

"Because I don't want to lose you, okay?"
Pryce says suddenly after her plea. He looks away quickly after, conflict heavy on his face.

 No.714480

>>714479
Lockjaw quickly finishes the piece of jerky, his powerful tail wagging back and forth. He nips at your hoof in between pets in a playful manner, never biting down hard enough to hurt.

"Okay, fair points, but the fact you're recognizing it at all is a credit to you," Zjetya says. "Most others would just throw themselves at the wall until it's too late. We had a loss in this fight, but… to be blunt, we should be glad it wasn't worse."

Zjetya looks shocked as you confess your reasoning. She twists her mouth, her brow tight and displeased. Her expression reminds you of the night outside the Witchbone Jungle, when she first expressed her feelings toward you.

She lets a long, palpable pause linger between you.

"Are you serious?" she asks, with weight.

 No.714481

>>714480
Pryce leaves his hoof for Lockjaw to play with, his mind too taken by what he said to Zjetya.

"I am."
Pryce answers. After another moment of silence, he finally lifts his head to face her, staring her in the eyes. His expression is stern, expected of a knight giving orders, but forced.
"After I realized that was you in that tree, I felt terrible about the way I treated you. When you lost your wings at Mariposa, I hated that I wasn't there to stop that demon trainer from taking them. Shei has experience with demons, he's been able to handle himself through the worst. And look at what they managed to do to him! To you, they…"
Pryce's tone gradually grows more worried, his face following suit as he continues to talk.

 No.714482

>>714481
Lockjaw flops around on your lap, twisting and turning as he play-fights your hoof, perhaps thinking it some kind of predator or hunter.

"You're saying I'm most likely to lose my life, considering how badly Shei got hurt in spite of his expertise and power, right?" Zjetya asks, deflating slightly. "…Told Amy I wasn't bullshitting her."

 No.714483

>>714482
"Wait, no, that's not what I meant."
Pryce corrects when her pride is hurt.
"You're not weak. But every place we go you end up getting gravely hurt."
He says apologetically, though immediately regrets his word choice. He pulls his hoof away from Lockjaw, putting them both on Zjetya's shoulders as he turns himself and her to face each other.
"You're caring. Both those times you were helping, but things just went south. I thought today was going to be simple, just a scout and some treasure hunting. But it's not. I promised today would be about you. And…"
Pryce pauses with an expression of weakness.
"…I'm scared I won't be able to protect you."

 No.714484

>>714483
Zjetya listens patiently, her expression not changing much. She frowns in thought once it's done, then eventually sighs with a look of resignation. "Pryce, it's alright. Things will go smoother when we accept that there's a real difference in ability between some members of the group. Not even all of us can use those 'Aspect' powers, the whole 'old magic' thing that the rest of you have. I'm not weak, but I'm not as strong as the others, either.

"…Then, alright. I won't get involved in fights… unless it's to keep the worst from happening to one of our allies. That's the point I can't compromise on, whatever else happens. Can you accept that?"



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