No.713264[Last 50 Posts]
The story so far:
The party have arrived at the far flung seaside village of Moonhollow, ruled over by the elusive Lord Harroway. They have found that among other problems, the surrounding lands are plagued by a magical corruption known as the Blight. Having befriended the aspiring knight Dalliance, the party have signed on with a slowly growing band of adventurers working to cleanse the lands around Moonhollow.
Their first mission consisted of them rescuing Anna, the local blacksmith's daughter, who had apparently not been kidnapped, but instead run away to prove herself in combat. Their mission was a success, and they made two new allies: Cinder Fabrie, a kirin, and Solar Flair, a pegasus. The latter had already succumbed to the Blight, but the party found that this could be undone through great effort. Unfortunately, Solar was attacked by a creature which appeared to be an advanced form of the Blight, and was made comatose. He is currently in recovery.
With their new friend Cinder having joined the party, the group have split into two for the moment:
Voleurz, Dalliance and Rainy have stayed in Moonhollow for the time being, seeking their next mission. They appear to have found one: food is scarce in Moonhollow due to the local farms being plagued by a terrible beast of unknown nature. After asking around, they have discerned that the beast appears to be some sort of wolf, but of an unnatural size, leaving no trace behind.
Talon, Jesse and Platinum have accompanied Cinder in trying to find her former charge, a renowned paladin called Guiding Moonlight. Cinder, Solar and a handful of others were part of a hired group to escort Moonlight to the village, but a Blight attack led to them being separated. After some investigating, they found Moonlight, only to find her having driven mad by the Blight. Unlike most, she appears to be fighting the corruption, but can no longer tell friend from foe, reduced to little more than a beast.
Dalliance nods eagerly. "Let's get going then!… Er… which way did they go? I… I didn't see…">>713261
You take the full brunt of the blow, getting run through by the glowing blade. It sears and smokes, and you collapse next to Cinder. The mad paladin breathes raggedly, like a deep sea diver, bearing over your prone form.>Platinum takes 7 hits, helpless at 0/3>>713262
She snarls and spins around as the shot hits her in the chest, turning the sword around in midair to face you.>>713263
You roll over, but your head is still spinning, and you fail to pick yourself back up.>>713265
Moonlight's sword swings upwards as you approach, slashing you across the chest.>Talon takes 4 hits>>713266>>713263>>713262>>713261
Enraged by the gunshot, Moonlight ignores everyone else for the moment, galloping towards Jesse and swinging the sword in a horizontal swipe.
[1d10+2]Roll #1 1 + 2 = 3
I crawl over to cinder and attempt to try to pick them up.
[1d10]Roll #1 6 = 6
>>713267https://pastebin.com/mEidtfKx>Backstory update pending
"Well now, we've got this lovely tracking device I reckon. Hopefully it's good for something
Voleurz says, looking to the clone following them.>>713261
"C'mon boy, show us where's Platinum Prime at."
Voleurz says, waving her hoof in front of the double.
The kirin snorts in frustration at her failed and clumsy attempt to right herself. She shakes her head to clear it, bits of flame shaking off her mane like water drops off a wet dog, bouncing off the ruined floor of the castle and sizzling out quickly. >>713269
Cinder nods to the griffon in appreciation as she takes the help clambering to her hooves.
She takes a breath, narrowed eyes locked on Guiding Moonlight as she redistributes her weight, coiling like a snake about to strike.
And strike she does! Pouncing into a rolling attack, Cinder wraps herself in a wreath of flames, bearing down on the corrupted paladin with a vengeance. She is a whirlwind of unbearable heat and screaming rage, one with the elements, terrible to behold.
Tumble (Elementalist Fire) [1d10+1]Roll #1 9 + 1 = 10
"Follow me" he says with a dastardly smiles and dashes to a pillar all while attempting to hit her
[1d10]Roll #1 4 = 4
"Cinder and the others ran off ages ago! I hope they're alright, these forests are really dangerous!">>713270
"Ohh! That could work, maybe the clone knows his way back to platinum!"
My chest heaves as I collapse to the ground. I managed it. I actually got her out of the way this time. Weakly, I try to pull myself to my trembling legs.
I smile and look between them. They want something. I was told to follow their orders, so that's what I'll do! I close my eyes and try to sense master.Roll #1 8 = 8
I stand up, still shaking. Without any fanfare, my horn lights up and I aim another shot at her blade. It seems Cinder has no problem attacking her proper, so I shift my target to the much easier to aim at body.
"If things don't start looking up, perhaps we should consider a tactical retreat!" I call out.
Roll #1 2 + 1 = 3 / Roll #2 3 + 1 = 4
As Cinder manages to get up on her own, you help up Platinum instead, hauling him to his feet. >>713271
You clamber up and charge at her, leaping and curling up into a ball midair as you burst into flame. You slam into her as she tries to attack Jesse, slamming her into a wall, setting her alight and pelting her with falling debris. She shrieks with pain and rage as you thwart her attack, collapsing for a moment.>>713272
You distract her like a matador, pulling her away from the rest of the group; however, Cinder manages to barrel into her at the last moment before you get to attack her.>>713276
Your magic bolt goes wide, sizzling as it bursts agains the rotting wooden walls of the watchtower.>>713274>>713271>>713272>>713269
Moonlight takes a knee from Cinder's blow, wheezing as she takes time to recover. Her horn lights up, and the sword starts hovering once again, flying straight at Cinder.
Platinum's clone starts heading off away from the farmsteads and towards the woods. "Seems he's leading us to him," Dalliance comments cheerily, following the illusion onward.
As you trek for about 20 minutes, the illusion starts moving through a patch of boggy marshland, infested by mosquitoes and other undesirable insects. It is difficult to see through the reeds, but you stick close to the doppelganger, until you come to a clearing with what looks like a wooden watchtower. You can hear the distant sounds of fighting coming from within. Dalliance, who has been quietly suffering through the swamp trek, perks up as you near the watchtower. "Sounds like they're in trouble. What should we do? What's the plan?"Roll #1 3 + 2 = 5
Jesse sees the sword fly at Cinder but he has a different idea. Charging directly at her frame he tries to bring the butt of his gun hammering down upon her horn
[1d10]Roll #1 2 = 2
My horn lights up as I try to summon two more doppelgangers. One beside me, one closer to Cinder. You've been slacking, Platinum. You need to stay vigilant and keep them active.
[1d10]Roll #1 3 = 3
I take flight away from the battle gaining distance above so I wouldn't fall to an errant swipe of a sword."Come on everyone we need to go, it will just get up again when we knock it down!" I yell to everyone.
Trap: recharge 1; Starting next turn, first enemy to attack is helpless for 2 turns.
Attempting to stall for some time I set a trap with the debris around the area once again to trap the blight for some time.
[1d10] trapRoll #1 6 = 6
The kirin calls back through clenched teeth, "Think you might be right! This is one tough broad!" >>713278
Cinder is ready for Moonlight's attack this time. Watching the sword fly at her, she neatly spins, calculating that this will place her in a favorable position.
Dodge [1d10]Roll #1 4 = 4
Oof, slight miscalculation. Cinder moves as best she is able toward the steps they arrived by, attempting a hasty retreat before she gets too familiar with Midnight's eerie sword again.
"Run and hide and hope none of them survive so we don't feel any guilt." Voleurz grins, looking to Dalliance, "What do you think my valiant knight? We play the hero."
Voleurz gallops towards the scene, throwing a knife to the top of the watchtower.
>Blink Strike: weapon, ranged; Disperse a weapon into magical energy, shooting it off at an enemy or target location, stabbing and sticking into it. If used from Stealth or on an enemy that doesn’t know you’re there, they can’t retaliate after getting hit. The thrown weapon counts as a minion for Ethereal Jaunt.
[1d10+1] DC-1 at an upper wall inside the watchtowerRoll #1 5 + 1 = 6
Flowing through the marshland unabated, Rainy samples some of the puddles as the group travels.
Hearing the fight nearby, however, Rainy looks on in panic as she surges past the others, towards the noise!
"Oh no! Hang on, everypony!"
You conk her over the head with your gun. It just pisses her off, and she turns the sword towards you next.>>713280
Your horn glows, but you are too heavily injured to be able to concentrate long enough to summon your doubles.>>713281>>713282
You loosen some of the rotting planks and crumbling stone to fall.>>713283
You move up the stairs slightly, getting out of the way of her sword swing.>>713285
She blinks, then puffs out her chest and draws her sword. "For great justice!" she cheers dramatically. She watches with curiosity and waits patiently for your command as you hurl a knife to the top level. It sticks firmly into the rotted wood.>>713286
You move closer to the watchtower, where you can see your allies fighting a single Blight clad in once brilliant armor, her mane covering most of her face like a veil. The unicorn uses a floating sword, glowing greenish blue. She is filled with animalistic rage as she fights all four of your companions at once, who seem to have suffered great injuries; Cinder and Platinum seem to be the worst off right now. None of them appear to have noticed you yet.>>713279>>713280>>713281>>713281
Moonlight gets back up, retrieving the sword and lurching forward. She is pinned again by Talon's trap, struggling vainly to free herself. Her sword is untouched, however, and she floats it towards Cinder once again, flying straight towards her.
[1d10+2]Roll #1 6 + 2 = 8
I grit my teeth and wince. Seem's I'm a little worse off than I'd imagined. And she's still going at Cinder? I clench my jaw and aim a shot at the sword, trying to knock it off course.
[1d10+1][1d10+1]Roll #1 3 + 1 = 4
/ Roll #2 8 + 1 = 9
Seeing a sword flung at her rival, Voleurz dashes in to take the blow.
>Ethereal Jaunt: Recharge 1, ranged; Latch yourself or an ally to a friendly minion within sight, swapping their places. If used in combat, attacks that were targeted on either of the swappers change to the other.
[1d10] >Shadow Fade; passive: Ethereal Jaunt loses the spell tag. After a successful Ethereal Jaunt, become Stealthed. Attacks that'd be taken from swapping locations with an ally still apply.Roll #1 2 = 2
Taking the advantage of the trapped mare he rushes up to her and puts the barrel as close as he can broken leg.
He unloads every bullet in order to sever the bone
[1d10]Roll #1 6 = 6
"I'm getting real h*ckin' tired of this," Cinder mutters as the sword again flies at her. She widens her stance, readying herself for the dodge, but thanks to Vanity's well-aimed lightning-bolt, finds she doesn't have to move that much. She instead readies herself for the attack, charging her horn with white hot anger. It glows for a moment, almost blindingly bright, and then darkens to a pitch black, pulsing in intensity this way three times in quick succession. A wave of heat pushes outward at each flash as the kirin focuses a nasty chain attack - directed not at Moonlight, but her shining weapon.
Storm Bolt (Elementalist fire; critfail range +3) [1d10]Roll #1 8 = 8
moving around and over the surrounding bogged terrain, Rainy forms a healing water ball, catapulting the orb towards Platinum!
"Please work.." mutters the goo, channeling more magic into the sphere.
[1d10] Heal (water)Roll #1 7 = 7
From my high up perch I try to take a pot shot at the blight.
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+1]Roll #1 8 + 1 = 9
Combat Talent: -1 crit range reflex shot
You send the sword careening off course, clanging off of the wooden wall.>>713289
You blink up to where the knife landed and join the fight.>>713290
You cripple her crippled leg even further, leaving it a mangled mess, causing her to collapse. She roars, thrashing about in abject rage and agony.>>713292
You fire three strobing black and white bolts at the sword, pummeling it over and over. It glows brighter and brighter, cracks starting to appear on it, spidering up the flat of the blade. As she sees the sword get damaged, Moonlight screams in anguish, struggling even harder against the rubble binding her.>>713293
You fling an orb of water at Platinum, cleansing his wounds and renewing his strength. >Platinum is healed, now at 5/4>>713294
You take the high ground and fire a bolt at Moonlight, piercing her chest. She flinches and wheezes, her breathing slowing, her movements becoming slowly more sluggish as she starts to give in.>>713288>>713289>>713290>>713292>>713293>>713294
Voleurz, Rainy and Dalliance join the fight, the latter posing dramatically with her estoc in the air. "Have at you!" she cries dramatically, and lunges at Moonlight with her sword.
Moonlight, now severely weakened, lets the sword clatter to the ground as she takes a moment to recover.Roll #1 9 = 9
Jesse without missing a beat runs over to the sword and picks it up
He gives her a taunting smile despite the handle in his mouth
A chill runs through my body as I take Rainy's liquid healing inside myself. I look over my shoulder and grin, giving her a quick wink. "Well, now, it seems the cavalry has arrived. Thank you, Ms.Springs."
Taking a deep breath, I turn my attention back to the battle. I order the double that was with them to return my rapier, which I promptly unsheath. My horn lights up as I try, again, to pull out two reflections. "We may have this yet."
[1d10+2]Roll #1 1 + 2 = 3
Cinder addresses Moonlight cautiously.
"Lady Moonlight!" she calls. "Lady Guiding Moonlight! The fight is over! Your enemies, vanquished, rue the day they met you!" She tries to reach through the darkness clouding the paladin's mind. "You have to gain control of yourself! Fight it! This is what you came here to do, fight the darkness! So fight it!">>713297
Sees Jesse take the sword. "Quickly - break it! Or bury it! Get it away from her!"
Voleurz goes to sit on Moonlight, pinning her to the ground.
[1d10]Roll #1 6 = 6
He gives a nod and rushes outside of the watchtower. He then places the sword on a plank and hammers at it with the butt of his revolver in order to destroy it
[1d10]Roll #1 4 = 4
Persuasion [1d10]Roll #1 8 = 8
Finally entering the fight, Rainy readies a water ball, holding her shot to assess the situation.>>713299
"Cinder! Who's that? Is that your friend?" asks the goo near you, pointing a hoof to the struggling mare.
Without taking eyes or attention off Moonlight, Cinder nods slightly in agreement with the watery pony's guess.
Seeing snails speaking to the blight, I aim to set up a trap for if the creature continues its attack on the group. Hitting some of the rubble loose poised to fall on moonlight.
Trap: recharge 1; Starting next turn, first enemy to attack is helpless for 2 turns.
[1d10]Roll #1 10 = 10
"Ohh she's hurt bad! If we can keep her still i can help! My magic might clear the curse, but if she keeps fighting like this it might be too late.."
You sense an immense amount of magical energy coming from the moonstruck blade. As you pick it up, Moonlight looks furious, struggling to get free as she glares at you with inhuman hatred.>>713298
You take your rapier and try to focus on resummoning your doubles, but are forced to dodge some falling rubble before you can do so.>>713299>>713302
At first she keeps raging, but as you speak to her, trying to convince her, she seems to hold back, breathing heavily but gradually calming down. Her glowing yellow eyes fade for the briefest moment.>>713300
You manage to hold her down in her weakened state, preventing her from breaking free. As Cinder speaks to her, she starts to stop trying to throw you off, growing steadily more passive.>>713305
You set up another falling rubble trap, just in case.>>713297>>713298>>713299>>713300>>713303>>713305
As Cinder tries to appeal to her, Moonlight starts to change, still twisted by the Blight but seemingly regaining her sanity, if only for the briefest moment. After a tense silence, she speaks, her voice having a distant echo to it as if speaking from somewhere far away. "…Whoever thou art… Stay away… Soon, I will be consumed… by it… by…"
She trails off, bowing her head, twitching slightly as she struggles to fight the corruption.
She's talking? And she's still aware. Good! "Ms.Springs!" I call out. "Now's your chance!"
He sees her rage and strikes the blade harder, hitting it so hard it appears the handle on his own weapon would fling off from the force
[1d10]Roll #1 8 = 8
Your revolver is not strong enough to destroy the sword. It is broken, but still usable, and your revolver strikes off of it harmlessly.
Cinder continues cooing to Moonlight. "Attagirl, stay with me, keep talking. Nobody's gonna consume you. We're all here for you. Any time, Rainy!" she hisses from the side of her mouth. "We're gonna help you now, Lady Moonlight. Stay with us."
"Don't worry darling, from where I'm sitting I could make sure that doesn't happen." Voleurz grins from her living seat, idly holding a knife against the mare's spine, "You're apparently a friend of Cindy though, so I'll let Miss Springs give you a shower.">>713303
"I've got her still darling, go ahead and sober her up will you?"
dropping her form to hide a nervous quiver, Rainy flows around and under the injured warrior, extending into a roughly circular pool. Focusing, she sends pulses of magic shimmering through the pool's surface, towards moonlight at it's center
[1d10] MendRoll #1 9 = 9
I sit at attention, not wanting to interrupt the possible end to the fight. Also encouraged by my exhaustion making me not want to move.
The cracks on the magic sword get a little longer, but you notice you are damaging your gun in the process.>>713311>>713312
She doesn't seem to hear you, struggling and shaking as she keeps trying to stave off the Blight. "The Glow…"
she whispers. "The Glow… It will bathe this land in color… All of thee… forgive me… for I have availed you naught…">>713313
You work your magic on Moonlight as best you can. The knightess closes her eyes as you bathe her in shimmering water, performing a ritual of ablution. >>713313>>713312>>713311>>713309>>713308>>713314
Slowly but surely, the black spidery lines on Moonlight's body begin to fade as Rainy begins the cleansing, the light in her eyes beginning to fade. As she finishes, Moonlight's head bows, losing consciousness for a moment; then, after a long, tense silence, her eyes flutter open, and she looks around, focusing on Cinder. Her eyes are a deep turquoise, the same as her sword. "…I know thy face," she says quietly to Cinder. She pulls herself up, but struggles and almost falls, still weakened by the exertion. Dalliance hesitantly sheathes her sword. "…Is… is it over?"
I let out a breath and sheath my rapier. "Good you managed to show up when you did," I say, more directed at Rainy than Voleurz. "Ms.Fabrie. You were the target most of the battle. Are you alright?"
Jesse, relieved jams the sword into the ground and rejoins the group
He walks back and eyes the mare up and down; curiously
I get up away from the group to start a search around the place in case of blights or any objects of interest.
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 8 + 3 = 11
the ground soaked around Moonlight, Rainy reforms to half her size, slinking back into her raincoat.
"Oh.. it worked! You're still hurt, but free." she says, her head drooping from the spell's exertion.
The fire kirin hasn't completely gotten used to the wet nature of Rainy's magic, but she sure does appreciate it. She tells the goo-pony how she feels. "You're amazing!">>713315
Cinder sighs, sagging with relief and sudden exhaustion. Suddenly seeming aware of her surroundings, she looks around at her new companions, come to the rescue.
"Good timing, ladies!" >>713312
Cinder never thought she would be happy to see Voleurz, but she can't help but crack a grin. "A wise use of your assets," she nods at the zebra's perch.>>713316
Cinder takes stock of herself. She has a couple pretty good gashes, definitely more than a couple bruises, maybe a sprained ankle, but seems like nothing is broken. "Could be worse. You caught your fair share of that as well back there. How're you holding up?" She suddenly meets his eye, smiling warmly. "Thanks, by the way. For, you know. "Heroically saving my life" and all that. A damsel could get used to that kind of treatment.">>713317>>713318
"And you two as well! I would have been a goner back there. Thank you so much.">>713315
She turns to hear Moonlight's voice. "Yes, Lady Moonlight. I was in the party you recruited to bring to Moonhollow. We were ambushed on the way, yesterday or the day before. I believe the rest of the party to be," she glances out to where the bodies of some of the party lie, some distance from the watchtower but plainly visible, "deceased or worse." She swallows. "Only myself and Solar Flair are accounted for."
He tips his hat to the Kirin and crouches down next to the mare>>713315
"Lady Moonlight eh? Sorry bout the uhh, whole leg thing. Yeah sorry about that, tell me if ya need anything"
I give a dismissive wave of my hoof. "Oh, posh. It's something any stallion worth their salt would have done. A night or so of rest should be more than enough, and I'll be right as rain, I assure you. More endurance and stamina in here than I let on." I tap my hoof to the chest of my armor and wince. Rainy closed up some of my wounds, but I'm still more than a little sore I guess.
Voleurz reluctantly gets off the larger mare, looking to Dalliance and smiling, "Yes darling, and we've saved the lives of the others. Well done.">>713320
"It seems we've saved your life for a second time now, and this time I didn't have to use much more than my rear. Tell me, does your friend need a haircut? I've done my own hair for years."
She looks over at the incredibly long mane of Moonlight's, twirling a knife.
"Thank you!" Rainy replies, perking up after pulling the water from one of the waterskins floating in her torso. "But you're still hurt too! Did you need help?"
"Rainy if it ain't too much to ask get everyone patched up. Everyone else I want us out of here within the hour got that?"
"How rude of me! I am Cinder Fabrie, Lady Moonlight. These are…" she looks around, uncertain how to refer to this odd assortment of characters, "my friends." >>713323
"Thanks, really, very kind of you." She frowns a bit. "Even sharpened, are you sure your blades are up to the task of cutting hair?">>713324
To her credit, Cinder does not burst into flame again at the prospect of Rainy's magic being used on her, but she doesn't look entirely comfortable with the prospect either. "Well…" The cut on her chest is still leaking a non-negligible amount of blood, and it really does hurt to walk on a sprained ankle.
She scrunches her eyes shut and grimaces. "Just get it over with then!!"
Despite her woeful appearance, the spell seems to have worked, and she has regained her sanity.>>713318
You go scouting for a bit and manage to forage some extra money from one of the slain Blights, as well as an odd silver pendant. You sense magic resonating from it, but you're not sure of the specifics.
She nods silently. "I am free," she echoes, as if to affirm it to herself.>>713320
She looks grim. "The… the others are all dead," she says quietly. You get the feeling she saw to it herself in her mania. "'Tis good that at least some escaped.">>713321
She struggles to stand on her good leg. "…It will heal," she says simply. "The flesh is fluid. It can be remade. The spirit is fragile, like a robin's egg.">>713323
"Huzzah!" Dalliance says cheerfully, looking proud of herself even though she didn't get to do much. "Good triumphs over evil once again!">>713321>>713320>>713319>>713317>>713316>>713323
"Dark have been my dreams of late," Moonlight muses. "Were it not for thine intervention, I would have succumbed to the very thing I seek to destroy. I know not thy names, save for Lady Fabrie, but thou hast my eternal gratitude, travelers." She bows deeply as best she can on her three good legs. "May the grace of the Twins guide thee to further triumph."
"Now. Knowest thee the way to Moonhollow? It is of utmost importance that I reach it. I must convalesce after this great ordeal, and I have urgent news to relay to Lord Harroway. If thou wouldst have me, I would accompany thee on the return, if thou art headed there. If not, thou hast merely to point me in the right direction."
My hoof digs into the floor, and my eye twitches, but I grit my teeth and bite my tongue. "At any rate," I say. "It's best we don't linger. I'll summon two more of my reflections to assist in carrying your former comrades' back to town for proper burials, Ms.Fabrie. I don't believe we're that far out."
"I agree, just wanted to make sure everyone was up to walkin"
I come back around and give a wave to the group.
"Thanks for that trap back there, if ya didn't place I think Moonlight here would still be tryin to kill us"
I step up beside Cinder and nod. "We're actually returning to Moonhollow now. Of course we'll accompany you back. And please. Think nothing of it. Though it was more my-" I give a sidelong glance to Rainy and smile. Friend would be the correct word, right? She's sweet and bubbly enough, at least. "Friend, Ms.Springs, who saved you proper I'm sure any of us would have done whatever was in our power to aid."
"I found some junk on the Blights we killed earlier." I hold up the coins and locket.
"Okay, i'll be fast!"
forming an orb of water, i lob it above Cinder, the water bursting into a light shower
[1d10] Heal (water)>>713327
"Happy to help, Miss Moonlight! As long as my magic can cure the blight, we can break this curse together." Says Rainy, nodding happily.Roll #1 10 = 10
Cinder nods gratefully. "But what about the rest of them? You think anyone at Moonhollow is gonna care about a bunch of dead bodies out here? Do we just let 'em rot?">>713331
Cinder waves back at the griffon cheerfully. >>713327
"Well, as luck would have it, that's where we were headed, as well!" She looks around the group for assent.
"Urgent news for Lord Harroway?" she prompts.
"Ya mind if I check out that locket?" he asked with his eyes fixed on the small piece
"Well, most of them aren't corpses for one." I sigh and shake my head. "But you're right. It doesn't seem right to leave what bodies are around to fester."
"I want it back right after." I place into your palm.
"I agree, we gotta respect the dead. I'll help bury the poor saps" He says grimly and strolls over to a body
He opens the locket and inspects both sides carefully
[1d10+2]Roll #1 1 + 2 = 3
"I'm on it!" replies rainy, busy lobbing water onto the fiery Cinder. "you look hurt too, can you move okay?"
Voleurz looks proudly towards Dalliance, turning to the pony she was sitting on and taking off her hat, giving a curtsey.
"Hardly a day, m'lady. If you're alright to travel through the mire and don't feel too wonky, then we'll be back post haste."
She gives a sly to Cinder as she speaks more eloquently than normal, reaffixing her hat to whisper to the kirin.>>713326
"Darling, if you doubt how sharp my blades are, I'd be happy to lop your tail off.
Cinder had forgotten to be braced for impact, and gasps loudly as she is splashed. For a few moments she is frozen in place, one hoof off the ground, head slumped down, an expression of disbelief on her face. Slowly she puts her hoof back down, doesn't raise her head, goes and sits down, away from the group, dripping.
Steam rises off her, and in a short time she is dry; the sour look on her face has mostly evaporated along with the water, although she does not seem as chipper as the post-battle adrenaline had made her.
"..Thanks," she mumbles. "…'mazing." She wanders off.>>713343
Cinder begins to catch wind of Voleurz's game, decides to play along. Whispers back as they both play demure to Moonlight, "If they're as sharp as your wit, you need to be careful you don't cut yourself on them.
I sit back, cock my eyebrows, give a small, amused smile, and watch. This is more entertaining than last time. I wonder why.
"I will travel for as long as I have to. My mission is of the utmost importance," she says rather obstinately.>>713331
Moonlight bows respectfully as you rejoin the group. "Greetings to thee, adventurer. I assume you are with these other valiant souls? Thou hast my thanks for thy heroics.">>713333
She nods stiffly. "Very well. Lead the way, and I shall follow." She picks up her damaged sword with telekinesis and sheathes it on her back, frowning concernedly at the state of it. "I can only assume there is a smith in town?…">>713335
As Platinum talks you up, she turns to you. "Thou art the one who cleansed my condition, then? Thou art a skilled healer indeed to be able to purify such unholy magic. …If thou canst, couldst thou heal my wounds? I appear to have taken a beating." She gestures at her broken limb; she doesn't look to be in much pain, however. She's probably just good at hiding it.>>713335>>713336
The orb of water floats above Cinder's head and bursts in a dazzling but gentle display, the rain falling down on the kirin and easing her aches and pains.>Cinder is at 5/5>>713341>>713337
It appears to be a pendant, not a locket, with an elaborate rose design on the front side. The chain is made of fine silver. As for the nature of its magical enchantment, you cannot tell. Perhaps someone in town might know more.>>713343
Dalliance gives you a proud smile, happy that the party have managed to do some good.
"I am wounded," says Moonlight, "but I shall endure. I have not traveled through fire and death to die in this forsaken place. Lead the way."
I simply nod my head.
I break away to summon two of my doubles and have the three load the two bodies over to of their backs with only minimal gagging. I'll be happy when we can get back to our room and get cleaned up again. Here I'd expected a day of rest in which I could at least keep my mane partially in tact.
He hands the pendant back to Blueblood and makes his way to the doorway of the watchtower
After that he goes over to a body and begins dragging it by the shoulders
"Alright everyone move out!" he bellows and begins hauling the body out into the swamp
"Alright then! Let's hit the road!" Cinder stands by the door expectantly, waiting to see if everyone is ready to depart. She then seems to think of something and addresses Moonlight. "Lady, we also found your shield, down the road. It was broken, I'm afraid, but maybe it can be fixed? The smith in town seemed quite skilled."
"We can all head back to town while I send one of my doubles to fetch it," I call up. "I know we all probably just want to get back and rest.">>713349
I roll my eyes and call in a singsong voice, "At my own pace, Jesse
. Give me just a moment, please."
Stepping out into the swamp, she almost trips over one of the corpses. "Hmm, then there's this to deal with." >>713338>>713340
Cinder touches one of the bodies and it lights aflame without kindling. She watches it burn expressionlessly. When she's done, she walks to another dead pony and does the same thing again. She watches again. There is a strange look in her eye and her movements seem almost robotic, or rehearsed.
"Oh my, right away, Miss!"
eying the mangled limb, Rainy gently take Moonlight's hoof in hers and flows over it, forming a watery cast over the injury. With some focus, Rainy sends more magic through, correcting what she can.
[1d10] Mend (water)
"Ohh, they really shouldn't have been so rough! This is a very serious break.."Roll #1 4 = 4
Voleurz puts a hoof to her heart, taking a step back,
"Oh my darling Cindy, I'm glad you've noticed. If only it possible for a blacksmith to sharpen yours.
Voleurz takes one side of Moonlight, beckoning Dalliance to go to her other side. "If you feel the need to lean on us at any time, do not think it unladylike to do so. I'm sure it has been a trial amongst such savages." Voleurz says in what is indistinguishable for honest sympathy, her hat once again taken off briefly to deliver the more posh dialect.
He watches the Kirin do this and gives a small sigh and shakes his head then continues down the path
I watch her out of the corner of my eyes. After the last body, I stand beside her and watch the flames. "I know that look," I say. "Knew it the first time I saw you fight, I think. This isn't the first time you've been through this, is it?" Without touching her, looking at her, or giving any kind of sly look or remark, I say, "I understand entirely. If you would like to talk… Well, just know I think I understand."
"Alas, but even the best smith can only work with the materials he is given. By the way, how are your letter openers? Snap any in two yet?
Vanity's words wash over her like an ocean wave on the rocks. She nods wordlessly, and for the briefest of moments, when her eyes meet the unicorn's, she seems unbearably angry and sad. She closes her eyes, lets out a sigh that is only slightly shuddery, opens them again. She just looks tired. In silence she turns away to begin the long walk back to Moonhollow.
"You're correct darling, as I said I don't think it possible for a blacksmith to wrought anything of use from you. As for letter openers, I'd happily allow you to use one yourself, it seems flailing your hooves around didn't pay off this time either.
Voleurz winks, turning her head away to lay off the Kirin for now, as not to go overboard.
I nod, hang my head, and quietly follow her.
He follows along and quietly sings some old marching cadences from his homeland
"On the nature of the Blight," she answers. "Or the Glow, as would be a more apt term. I… I believe I may have learned something, while it had a hold of me. I still have many questions that need answering, but I feel he should know what I think I know.">>713350
She blinks, looking down at her crippled leg. "…I remember as such. I killed many of them, but they overwhelmed me, and then…" She trails off. "…Yes. It would be good to retrieve what is left of it.">>713353
"It was like these ere thy companions arrived," she states.
You form a sort of cast over the limb that stays, but fail to heal her in any magical form. She winces a little, but nods. "It will suffice until I reach the village. Doubtless they have some form of healing in Moonhollow. My thanks, Lady Springs.">>713354
"I will endure," she says again rather stiffly as she adjusts her mane to look less ghostly, bringing it back behind her ears and down her left shoulder. She bears many scars and open wounds from the fight, but seems to be in good spirits. If not for them, she would look quite fetching. "I always do. But… thou hast my thanks for thine assistance." Between the two of you, you help her walk along with the rest of the group. >>713352
You set the bodies of Thibault and Etain alight, giving them an impromptu funeral in the swamp. Dalliance looks upset at the sight, having to cover her nose and mouth, while Moonlight, seeing what she has done, simply looks away with sadness.>>713357>>713356>>713355>>713354>>713353>>713347
After burning the bodies, you begin the trek back to Moonhollow. Dalliance doesn't hesitate to complain when she gets a couple of leeches on her, plucking them off and trying not to dry heave. Apart from this, the trip back is relatively uneventful; you return to the spot where you found Moonlight's shield, and she takes the remains without a word, and from there you make it back to the village.
"It is about what I expected," Moonlight comments at the sight of the destitute little hamlet. "I see I shall have mine work cut out for me." You enter the hamlet after dealing with the gate guard as usual. "First things first," says Moonlight, "I will need to see a healer. Knowest thee of one in town?"
"I noticed your primary weapon in this fight was noticeably… blunter… as well. I'm glad you've decided to find a use for that dusty old thing, must have been just lying around your parent's manor for decades.
" She smiles sweetly at Voleurz.>>713361
"Yep, it's… not exactly a bustling metropolis, that's for sure. But there's a healer, and a smith, and then you'll want to check out the Guild. It'll be a whole thing. I'll show you around!" She takes Moonlight to the chapel, hoping to speak with Clear Waters again.
I take a deep breath through my nose, taking in the disgusting -but somehow welcoming- scents of the dilapidated town. "Well," I say. "If that's all for now, I should like to return to my room, clean up, and change back into my suit. I'd hoped to get out of this armor for more than a night. Where should I expect to meet back with everypony?"
Seeing Cinder leave with her matron Voleurz turns to the rest of the party.>>713945>>713360>>713347
"Well now darlings, I'm glad the firebrand found her noble matron out there in the mire, but we did
have a job to do. Did you find any leads on the bandits while you were out there? Answer first then clean up Platinum dear."
"Not a problem!" Rainy cheerfully replies, following the others back to town.>>713946
"Oh! and now that everypony is here, we can help those farmers too!" the goo adds, nodding.
"Well we certainly know they're targetin' people of importance. I wouldn't doubt they got spies in every inch of this place. As for why I ain't sure but I bet moonlight has some knowledge that'll hurt the blights for sure"
I go up to Voleurz slowly coming onto the ground with a clack of my claws. I then pat them on the head. "I personally think they are attacking groups or outsiders coming in, such as when our carriage was attacked. Or they are collecting women such as with the daughter of that daughter."
"Well lets think what do these two ladies have in common?. Personally I think they knew someone would send mercenaries after em. But why would they deliberately do that?"
"Honestly I can't think of anything." I idly tap my chin.
Rainy taps her muzzle in thought, sending ripples along the liquid.
"Oh! Maybe they want the village to fall apart, so they stole a lot of helpful villagers to force them out!"
Voleurz nods to the goo,
"Well if they found nothing but assumptions, I think you're right miss Springs. With no concrete leads, at least we know the beastie will be out tonight. Just one night's of work to get payment!">>713949
Voleurz smiles at the gesture, "Well unfortunately that doesn't give us much to go on darling. I'm sure you tried your best though.">>713948
"Darling, for what reason do you think they have spies here? Do you see any proof of espionage?"
You enter the chapel. It is a bit more lively this time of day, with a few churchgoers kneeling in silent prayer. The only one around is a mare that resembles Clear Waters a bit, but has a bit of a darker coat and a tied up braid instead of a loose ponytail. Her eyes widen a little at the sight of Lady Moonlight, who asserts herself quickly.
"Greetings, sister. I… I shall spare thee the niceties." She grimaces slightly from the pain in her bad leg. "I am Guiding Moonlight, an emissary of the Church, and I… I require healing. My associate here has told me this chapel is a place of respite in these times."
The mare looks a little taken aback, but nods a little. "It is an honor, Lady Moonlight. Please, right this way."
The mare leads you both down into the undercrypt, where the sick and injured are kept. With the aid of other healers, Lady Moonlight is quickly made comfortable, and tended to. Chief among the healers appears to be Doctor Caldwell, bossing them about as they tend to Moonlight's injuries. She is soon put under sedation, falling asleep for now. You notice Solar on one of the beds, still comatose. Clear Waters is around, helping tend to Lady Moonlight at the moment.>>713945>>713946>>713947
"I do rather fancy the idea of helping the farmers," says Dalliance, "but if we want to try to tackle those bandits, that would be a good option too. I'll follow what miss Voleurz chooses, I suppose!">>713948
Dalliance frowns. "Spies? Correct me if I'm wrong, but aren't these bandits just two, working independently? I mean… I don't doubt that there are bandit clans out there, but these two don't seem to be affiliated.">>713949
Dalliance nods. "The Blighted certainly do seem to be trying to stop us travelers from reaching Moonhollow. It seems that they are more intelligent than they appear at first glance. They are not mindless, just enslaved." She looks a bit uncomfortable at the thought of intelligent zombies.
I cock my eyebrow. Oh? Speaking with me again now that you've something to gain from it? Typical. "I'm afraid we found naught aside from the swathe of ash and carnage our Ms.Moonlight carved across the muck and mire." I smile. "I apologize. I'd hoped to find something to bring back for you from the caravan wreckage site, but it was a good bit further than I'd imagined. More than a half day's travel, as it turns out."
"O-oh," I stammer, and my smile falters. "Back into another job so soon? I suppose I won't
change into my suit after all. But, praytell, farmers?
"Yeah! these poor farmers are being attacked by a monster, and we
offered to help them!" Rainy replies, leaning against Voleurz and dampening her clothes.
"You'll help us too, right? I've got an amazing plan!"
"First they kidnapped the blacksmith's daughter and Lady Moonlight got corrupted. Clearly these Blights want something but what. I suppose if they were to capture the town it would really only give em more troops. This place aint exactly big on the map"
"With the taste of the vegetation on the way here, and prey turning to ashes, I wouldn't mind helping farmers as it sounds like it would secure some food in the future." I scratch my belly feeling peckish at the moment.
Cinder first makes sure that her patron is receiving care and comfortable, then, seeing Solar, excuses herself to go by his side. She looks down at his comatose face for a minute, before looking around to see if anyone is around to ask about him. She doesn't want to interrupt Caldwell himself, as he appears very busy. She wanders back over to Moonlight to see if she can borrow a moment of Clear Waters's time.
"Good to see you again! How goes the healing business?" An awkward start maybe, but she plunges through. "Any word on Solar Flair?"
"Monster ysay?" He shifts his eyes to the mare "And what is this plan of yours?"
"What a shame darling, it'll have to be the farmers then. Trust me, they're just as mangy and unkept as you would expect for such serfs. Only reason I'd want to help them is the coin, and so we could have a proper dinner together." She winks.
I shake my head. "Not at all," I say. "Mr.Talon makes a good point. Aiding the farms would be a huge boon to both the town and, by proxy, ourselves. What's this plan of yours?"
"Thank you lady knight." Voleurz smiles, "Well once Rainy has discussed our plan to the others, I suppose we could start scouting out where we'd want to set our trap."
"Well.. The monster has been eating all their cattle at night, but if it sees a pony it'll fun away, so if i make myself look like a cow in the field tonight, it'll come running toward us instead!"
"I'll flow away and then we can fight it in the open." she finished, nodding sagely.
I'd help them myself anyway, but I don't bother voicing that little tidbit. Wouldn't want anyone to start thinking I'm an easily manipulated bleeding heart, after all. "Well, at any rate it helps us too. A proper dinner together sounds wonderful."
"Well it seems like a good enough idea. If the plan don't work we could always just use the cattle gettin attacked. Just, keep yourself safe." he then turns to the rest of the group "Everyone I got an idea. Rainy disguises as a cow, we take advantage of the fields n such to provide cover, surround her. When the monster enters we ambush him"
"H'm. A shame. If it was a ponyeater I could just use one of my doubles to draw it in. Are you sure you'll be alright, Ms.Springs? I'd hate for you to get injured."
"What a brilliant idea darling! I'm glad you thought that Rainy's idea was good enough to claim as your own."
"Well, we don't have to start immediately. We can have some time to convalesce after that little sortie, I think. We can set out tonight, or tomorrow, or… well, whenever you feel like! I'm not here to boss you around, after all.">>713959
Dalliance rubs her chin thoughtfully. "It's almost as if they're following orders from someone, or something. But who?">>713961
She turns to you. "Oh. Hello again. He's about the same, it appears. I don't know how long it'll be until we can get him out of it, but the work continues."
I stare at him for a moment before finally saying, "Was that- Was that not the plan to begin with?"
"What is the monster even look like, I would just hate it if it turns to dust after we kill it and it just be another thing like the blights." I whine.
"Well, I suppose I'll follow along with what the rest of us decide upon. My funds shan't last forever at any rate, so the more jobs the better. Still, I'd like a day of rest some
"Well, I'd hate to rain on your parade-" I glance to Rainy. "No offense." I look back to Soft. "But I wouldn't put much stock in any plans to eat it. Any beast around here is bound to be infected in one way or another."
"Well, I was thinking of eating it, but also if it does turn to dust, how would we prove this is the beast attacking the farmers without capturing it, or it can be a controlled attack." I mumble
"Well I rather like 'bossing people around', I think it'd be best we take on the beast tonight so we finally have some coin for supplies. We've not even three days worth!"
"Mhm! I'll be really careful and slip away before it pounces!"
"It can't grab a puddle, so i'll be a-okay."
"Well, if you're certain. A simple hunting mission, then? We'd not have to do any tracking or what have you? Certainly a job you either finish quickly, or are finished quickly by, so at least that much is reassuring."
"Ah. Got it. Please do let me know if anything improves." She looks the devotee over. "Do you ever take breaks? It's important to take time to yourself, you know." She gives a genuine grin. "If you ever want someone to wind down with, look me up. I'll be around at least until my friends heal up." She thinks a moment. "Or until the plague eats the town alive." She chuckles a bit darkly.
Looking around, she considers that this will probably take some time. Maybe it would be nice to grab a bite and a drink somewhere. It's been a long day. Addressing Lady Moonlight, she states "When you're done here, you should head to the Guild. I'm sure they're looking forward to meeting you."
"Hmm.. tonight isn't here yet, but maybe we should head to the farm? We can find the spot to lay the trap before it gets dark!"
"Yes darling, I just said that to Knight Dalliance."
I laugh. "Seems we're developing a habit of repeating one another already. How quaint."
"Huh? oh.. sorry.. i was talking to Platinum and missed it." says rainy, looking away as her muzzle turns a darker shade of blue.
"There's just not much time for breaks nowadays," she laments. "Everyone's in need of healing, whether physical or spiritual. It would be nice to get out of the chapel, but we're just too busy with the Blight and all…" She rubs the back of her head uncomfortably. "Ah well. If you ever need to get patched up, you know where to find us!"
Moonlight gives a weak nod, feeling the effects of the sedating spells and tonics. She wordlessly fumbles with her pockets before pressing a small leather pouch into your hoof, payment for your services.>+400 bits>>713974
"From what we gathered, it's like a huge, black wolf. Only, it doesn't seem to leave any trace of it. No footprints, I mean. Eyewitness reports seem few and far between.">>713977>>713975>>713976>>713978>>713969
"W-wait! Shouldn't we, uh, prepare if we're going to hunt it? We don't really know what we're up against, other than that it looks like a wolf and doesn't leave footprints. If I may offer my opinion, I believe it would be a better option to observe its behavior. That makes sense, right? …I mean, we can engage it head on if you like." She seems uncomfortable sharing her opinions.
"I don't see we can gather up any clues or observe it if it is in the dark and leaves no traces, but I guess if we do search it won't hurt to do so." I shrug.
"If we're goin with that idea then when it attacks we should follow it back to it's home. We can get a better advantage when it sleeps"
I knit my brow and stare at Dalliance for a long moment. Right. Just going in guns blazing is capable of getting someone killed. I… I really should have considered that, honestly. I mentally curse myself for being such an idiot. A dull pain throbs on my chest, and I place a hoof to my armor. "Ms.Dalliance is correct," I say. "We shouldn't just attack without knowing what we're up against. It's reckless, and I'm embarrassed to have suggested something so foolish."
Voleurz raises an eyebrow at Jesse,
"An actual valid point for once, just because we'll be witness to it hunting in the evening, doesn't mean we have to bash it's head in the very night. We could stalk it back to it's lair after we play the vouyer for a bit."
"I personally don't like that plan as there could be a pack or monsters on the way over there, plus in that forest, we could easily lose it," I say.
"It's really good at hiding, the farmers never find it when it hides in the forest.. And without prints to follow we might never find it's home!"
"Well to remedy that problem I suppose one of us can shoot something at it so it's trackable"
Cinder takes the small, but hefty, pouch with a grateful nod. "If I don't see you there, I'll check back in on you later. Rest up, brave Moonlight." Cinder curtsies, then a moment later embraces the paladin quickly. "Twins' blessings," she murmurs into the mare's ear, before departing wordlessly upstairs and out of the clinic and chapel.
Outside, she makes a beeline for the guildhall. Again she notes it curious shape, wondering whether it was a ship before it was reformed into a place for heroism and fellowship. Not to mention drunkenness, gambling and probably vice on multiple other levels, she reckons. Her kinda place, all told. She will have to ask about the history.
She goes to the side door, aware that the front is closed, and gives it a solid three knocks with her front hoof. She takes the next moment to examine the craftsmanship of the building.
"That would just be alerting it to our presence it would no doubt miss noticing tha it was stuck by anything, let alone us having something to track it if we do hit it." I put my claw to my head.
"We could always take the old fashioned approach" His expression turns sour "Wound it badly enough it retreats and follow the blood trail"
"But if we dont hurry, the farm is going to be even worse off.. If we can't track it, we'll just have to try with what we know!"
"No, what I mean is, we could try following it instead of engaging it head on," she clarifies. "Obviously we can't follow a trail. Sorry.">>713988
"Yes yes. It's an animal. It must have a home somewhere. Right? We don't really know what we're fighting yet, but it's no ordinary wolf.">>713990
She nods vigorously. "Exactly! Better not to rush into this. We could all get killed.">>713989
She blinks. "There's nothing to apologize for, Mr Vanity! I can understand being eager to get it over with. I just get the feeling it wouldn't end well.">>713994
A red changeling answers the door. You've seen them around before, but don't know their name. "Hey. Forgot your name, sorry. You have any idea what's going on? Everyone just up and left this morning.">>713998
"That's… a fair point." She frets a little. "This is kind of a bad situation, huh. I guess we should… follow it home and fight it? I don't know. I'm not good at this sort of thing…"
I give her an appreciative smile, but otherwise remain silent and broody.
"If it's a wolf then it follows wolf-like behavior. If that's the case then where's it's pack? If just one of these can inflict that much damage imagine six of them"
"You make quite a few assumptions, don't you, Jesse? Be careful with that. It's dangerous."
Cinder blinks with surprise at the news. "No, I mean, it seemed quiet this morning but I didn't realize that everyone had actually left." She cranes her head around the changeling to look behind him. "Everyone??" She's incredulous. "Was there any kind of meeting scheduled for today? An alarm going off? A note left? Anything?"
"Yeah! We'll beat it up, then follow it back to it's home!"
looking around, Rainy tries to see the road to the farm from town.
"Hmm.. which way was it again?"
"Jesse, just because I see you have feathers doesn't mean I think you lay eggs.">>714000
"Well then darling, to the farm."
"Wait, can you lay eggs Jesse?" I raise an eyebrow looking at him from Voleurz comment.
"Well I hope ya don't mind me makin' a few more assumptions. First, we know it hunts cows which most likely means its a carnivore. Second, cow's bein fairly hefty animals means this thing has fairly high metabolism or it's rather large. If it's goin after stuff as big as cows then it may be the apex predator of this area which means we're in some trouble"
"Ohh! Eggs? I'd like an egg, Jesse!" says rainy, bouncing excitedly.
"Darling, quit while you're ahead."
"Ahead isn't the word I'd use."
"Alright fine, we got a job to do anyway. To the barn" he remarks
You give her an appreciative smile, but otherwise remain silent and broody.>>714003>>714006>>714007>>714009>>714010
"Mr Blackbriar does have a point though," says Dalliance. "If it looks like a wolf and acts like a wolf, then it's a wolf. A… large, magic, possibly hyperintelligent wolf. Hm.">>714004
"Well, most of us." The changeling shrugs and stands to the side to let you in; there's only them, a large, very hairy felid, and a female hippogriff milling about boredly. It's much less lively than usual. Feels like a ghost town. "Maybe they all went off on an expedition or something," the changeling shrugs. "Chantal and Lykoi over there are in the dark as well. If they did go on an expedition, why weren't we invited? Or at least told? It's all very mysterious." They shrug. "Oh, the name's Imago, by the way.">>714005>>714006>everyone else that's following, can't be bothered quoting every post
You head off to the farms, Rainy, Voleurz and Dalliance leading the way. Most of the plots of land surrounding Moonhollow are threadbare at best, with wilted, barely edible crops and only a handful of wan looking farm animals standing about looking depressed. The few farmers you come across out in the fields look thoroughly weathered and glum. "You'd find more cheer at a funeral," Dalliance comments, looking uneasy. "What's the plan, then? Just scout where it's been? Ask around?"
"While the one farmer claims that the wolf has never been seen properly, I'm sure that's myth. Someone here must
have seen at least a direction it went after a kill. Let's spread out and ask around, darlings."
Alright here's what I recommend
Split into teams of two, search these farms of anything relating to the beast, talk to farmers and gather as much information as possible. I expect everyone back here in at least an hour. If you encounter any problems scream and run to hear, do not fight it. If all goes well we regroup and discuss our findings.
"">ooc: forgot the quotes
Voleurz grins from ear to ear, turning to Jesse,
"Fair enough, go do whatever then" he responds with a quite annoyed look
I give him an only slightly annoyed deadpan. "Noted and rejected, Jesse.
Would you please stop doing that?"
setting to work, Rainy attempts to flag down a farmer for information!
[1d10]Roll #1 4 = 4
"Then Im sorry for tryin to keep this group organized" he glares and walks off toward the treeline
[1d10+2]Roll #1 4 + 2 = 6
"Aw.. I'll ask around, Jesse!" Rainy yells as you trot off, waving a hoof.
Voleurz heads out looking for a miller, given their propensity to usually be slightly more cleanly than a proper farmer.
[1d10]Roll #1 7 = 7
"I am just going to go while you two lovers fight." I shake my head as I take a flight to go find a farmer to talk to for evidence.
[1d10] TalkRoll #1 1 = 1
"You're trying to do no such thing!" I call out as he walks away. "You're attempting to control
our merry little band and I'll have-" I'll have none of it, I want to say, but continuing at this distance is awkward. I clear my throat, brush myself off, and head off to find someone to speak with as well.
[1d10]Roll #1 7 = 7
"Cinder. Pleased to meet you. Sorry it had to be under such cr*ppy circumstances." Cinder offers her hoof to shake Imago's, then peers into the gloomy, mostly-deserted hall. "This is all that's left? Have you guys tried to locate Zeke? There has to be some tracker that could…" She lets her voice trail off as she realizes the dearth of talent that is probably left, and begins to appreciate the gravity of the situation. She moves to the job board to check it out, deftly removing her own :MISSING: notice and trying to scan for anything suspicious. After this, she looks to the other occupants.
"So, no word from Zeke? How about Harroway, have any of you seen or spoken with him?"
You both head in more or less the same direction and find a sunken eyed young mare with a black mane and a white coat, giving her a rather ghostly appearance. The waif is carrying a heavy looking bag of potatoes with little effort. As you flag her down, she stops and looks at you expectantly.>>714021
"Hey, I don't think that's a good idea," Dalliance calls out, looking concerned. Her loyalty makes her stay by Voleurz's side, however.
Among the trees, you don't really find much that you wouldn't find anywhere else. The trees are bare of leaves, and skeletal, like they would be in the coldest of winters, despite it being spring. There's little to no signs of life in the woods here, only the occasional buzz of an insect or the rustling of leaves on the wind. It's eerily quiet.>>714023
You see a small windmill in the distance. As you approach along with Dalliance, you see that it is still, and in a state of disrepair. On the porch of an old, slightly run down house, there is a very old, white-bearded earth pony in a rocking chair, wearing a wide brimmed straw hat. He is fast asleep, and not even the barking of a nearby guard dog rouses him.>>714024
You come across an extremely old mare with her hair in a bun, carrying a basket full of freshly picked carrots. She looks over at you curiously, but doesn't really seem to pay you much attention.>>714026
Imago shakes his (or her) head. "Nothing from Zeke. And none of us left are any good at tracking. If they're not back by tomorrow, then we'll start worrying."
The notice board seems the same as always. No new messages.
Lykoi, the big and extremely hairy felid, shakes his head. "No one sees Harroway without an invite. Barely ever leaves his manor as is. Just sends manservants out to distribute his messages. Who knows what he does all day up there."
I take a reflexive step back, but quickly regain my composure and smile before seeming too clearly disgusted. "Yes, terribly sorry to bother you. I've been lead to believe there have been attacks on livestock recently? I was hoping you might be able to provide me some information on that."
[1d10+1]Roll #1 9 + 1 = 10
"Hello there, I am part of the group working to get rid of the wolf, we are looking for any information to be provided against the creature. I only require a bit of your time." I wave over to the older pony.
[1d10] talkRoll #1 1 = 1
Cinder stamps a hoof. "Well sh**t!" she curses. Acting distraught, she stamps over to the booze and attempts to pour herself a draught. She stands and sips at her stolen mug (whether she succeeds or fails) and looks thoughtful for a moment.
Cinder puts down her drink and walks to the exit. Before walking through the door, she turns and addresses the group. "Thanks for your help, folks. Hang in there. I'll be back to check on you." She turns to leave, headed maybe toward the tavern. She wonders idly if she will run into the rest of her party there, or even anyone at all. She vaguely recalls the place seeming empty as they departed, but had attributed that to it being so early. Beginning to get worried, she picks up her pace to a trot to approach the Henke's Familiar.
"Yeah! We're here to help deal with the creature!" Rainy cheerfully adds, leaving Plat to his work.
Voleurz holds a hoof to her mouth, letting out a long drawn out whistle [1d10]
"Rise and shine darling, I've got a hundred loads of wheat for you to start milling!"Roll #1 6 = 6
Quiet, strangely quiet. He ponders and only remembers this quiet from the moments leading up to something dreadful. He keeps his head on the swivel, surveying the barren trees. Without noticing he finds himself in the center of the field he's patrolling. He takes a good surveying of the area and searches for anything of value
[1d10+2]Roll #1 4 + 2 = 6
The waif puts down the sack with a loud thunk
. She looks frustrated about something, gesturing at her mouth and throat wordlessly. >>714029
She stops and thinks. "I seen it carry off a whole cow and leave nary a trace behind. Lives up in them there woods. Never shows any others in its pack. Don't think it has one. 'S not a wolf, I don' think. Not a wolf at all. 'S got this yellow mouth inside… 'N it don't bleed neither. Remember old Dirk down the way saw it n' took a pot shot at it… Nothin' happened. No blood. It just got angry, he said. 'S never going to stop…" She points at you with one wizened hoof. "Bigger than you… Bigger than you tried ta take it down… Nothin' came of it, nothin' at all… Fool's errand, I says. 'S the curse of Moonhollow.">>714031
There's not much booze left, but you take what you can get. The three remaining adventurers nod goodbye.
You head to Henke's, greeted only by the eternally exhausted Gord, futilely trying to get a stain off of the bar top. He nods at you ingreeting. Seems like no one else is around right now, not even Stolas.>>714033
The miller starts awake, pulling his hat up and hobbling out of the chair, calling off the large, mean looking dog that is barking at you. "Sunny! Heel!"
"Sorry 'bout that. She's a good dog, really. Just doesn't like people she don't know. What brings ya here?">>714034
You move in a bit deeper. It's not that the wildlife is keeping quiet, you find. It's that there is
no wildlife at all. There's almost nothing here, like all the animals were just spirited away one day. No sign of this 'wolf', whatever it may be.
Jesse puts his hoof to his chin deep in thought. If the wolf never leaves tracks, there isn't wildlife, and the farmers doesnt know where it goes it could be a ghost or spirit. If it's terrorizing the cattle the farmers could've disturbed this somehow. He walks over to the nearest pony and asks
"Ya mind tellin' me when these farms were built?"
"Ah. H'm. Well, that makes things difficult." I glance to Rainy and hum to myself. I don't suppose she knows how to write. "Well, thank you for your time. Would you know of anyone else who might be able to help?" I gesture toward the sack. "I don't suppose you needed help with that?"
Cinder nods back to Gord.
"Everyone's gone, then?"
"Surprised you've got hooves on the ground, friend. Seems like this would be prime time to take a quick break, maybe sneak a few Z's in."
"Stay safe, be good!"
Cinder departs. She walks out to the 'middle' of 'town', trying to figure out where everyone is.
"Oh! Your voice is gone? Let me help!"
forming a small circle of water underneath her, Rainy pulses magic into the pool, in an attempt to mend the injury!
[1d10] Mend (water)Roll #1 8 = 8
"That sounds quite similar to what happened to that unicorn that was affiliated with cinder, I have to tell them, the colors and the rage. Might not be too big of a coincidence." I say to myself.
"I've had a mixed relationship with dogs, they did great work scaring off sneak thieves back in the manor before they were sold off. However, ever since I left the place, they all seem to regard me as one. Cobblers I say." Voleurz grins, staring daggers at the dog to assert authority.
"Well now, this here is Knight Dalliance and you may refer to me as Voleurz - we've heard of the beast that stalks the night and want to ease the burden of the farmers here and slay the foul thing. Doing so, I'm sure the mill could see work again, if you catch what I'm on about."
She looks out at the barren fields behind her, "Given your position aways away from the farms proper, I was wondering if your vantage point has seen this beast from afar. Err rather, if your eyes are good enough for it that is." She smiles politely.
I stare at Rainy, mouth agape. "Ms.Springs, you- You can cure a malady of such permanence as muteness? I have to say, if this pans out you're quite the amazing mare."
"Hmm.. maybe!" she replies, partly sunk into the pool. "It might be too old an injury, but i'll do my best!"
You stroll out of the woods and find a hard faced donkey plowing a field. He takes a break from his labor to talk a while. "Been around since forever," he shrugs. "Was born here myself, and I'll probably die here. Why?">>714037
She shakes her head in frustration, pointing at her mouth again, then up at the woods.>>714039
You channel your healing magic into the mare, who is caught a little off guard. Despite your best efforts, however, it doesn't seem to do anything. She looks a little downtrodden.>>714038
"Mhm," is all he has to say to you.
You find yourself in the town square, which has little more than a dying tree and a statue of some Diamond Dog noble, which has been thoroughly defaced by the local pigeon population. Up ahead on the hill is the fenced off area that is Harroway's manor, while a road leads to the shops behind you, the church on your left, and the guild hall on your right. It is all laid out very practically and simply.>>714040
The old mare looks a bit confused as to if you're talking to her or not, but mumbles a farewell and goes back to her business.>>714041
Having been called off, the dog simply sits on its haunches and pants a little. Dalliance gets a bit closer to it, warily reaching out and petting the dog. It is receptive, and enjoys the attention thoroughly.
"Oh. How do you do, sir," Dalliance says politely with a little curtsy, coming back from her dog petting session. The miller nods. "The name's Dirk. Just Dirk. And yeah, I know o' the beast. Even shot at it once.
"Heard the chickens one night making a horrific fuss. Thought it was a thief. I run out with Sunny, and there's this huge black beast, mouth like a lamp light, tearing into the coop. So I does the done thing. Pull out me rifle and fill it with lead. It… It just stared
at me, with this hatred I never seen in no animal. It ran off, didn't leave any blood, not from the chickens, not from itself. No prints, nothing. Nothin' from the natural world could do that."
Dalliance looks troubled, looking at you to gauge your reaction. "Anyways," Dirk grunts, "that's 'bout all I know. It's like a ghost. Some kind a' vengeful spirit come to plague us. I don't know why or how. But it's there. It's very, very real." He shudders a little at the memory.
Alright. I'm a little lost. "Wait, you're not saying you were personally attacked, are you? As in whatever caused this is the reason you can't speak? Apologies if I'm misunderstanding."
"Then do you mind telling me when ya started havin' this problem with the wolf" he asks, although his original idea has been thoroughly shot down there may be something more to the story
Voleurz looks discreetly at the miller's eyes, wondering if there is any sign of the blight from the wolf staring him down. She disguises this voyeurism as listening intently,
"I see I see
, sounds like a rather scary sight. But you did say it ran off, and that's what interests me. It didn't leave prints, but you must of saw the headway it took, didn't you now?"
Flowing back into her Raincoat, Rainy looks on, downtrodden.
"Aw.. It didnt work!"
Uncorking the second waterskin, she quickly pulls the water from the container, leaving it to float next to the first.
"I was sure it would work this time..">>714045
"Oh? You think something else took
[1d10+1]Roll #1 3 + 1 = 4
After some contemplation and the older pony's farewell, I start my flight back to moonhoolow to talk to cinder to speak of my theory to them about the "wolf" attacking the farm.
"Well, I'm not actually sure. I could just be making assumptions."
Cinder finds it hard to call Moonhollow a town. What a ramshackle, decrepit mismatch of hovels and disrepair. She sighs and tries to look on the bright side.
"Quaint?" she wonders to herself as she takes an eyeful of the statue (probably half pigeon excrement by volume) and the tree (cause of death: suicide?). She looks up the hill with dread. The imposing manor looks haunted as h*ck.
Her hooves turn seemingly on their own volition and lead her down to the shops. It's well within business hours, she thinks. Some place has to be open.
Besides, she hums to herself, she has a bit of change burning a hole in her pocket…
She nods, looking morose.>>714046
"Must've been… hmmm… About a month ago now. The Rill family were the first ones to get hit. Their daughter was torn to bits by it, you see. Awful business.">>714047>>714049
His eyes are naturally yellow, so it's hard to tell if he has it or not.>>714047
"Same place it always goes when its business is done." He nods with his head towards the dead trees bordering the farms all around.>>714048
She looks at you curiously, with a slow, inquisitive blink.>>714045>>714048
The mute waif assumes you're done with her, and picks up her sack again before getting ready to head off, waiting to see if there's anything more to say.>>714050
You take to the air, flying up and towards Moonhollow. It takes you a while, but you eventually locate Cinder walking down one of the many identical cobble streets.>>714052
You start heading down to the bottom of town, where the shops are located; or rather, shop. The only relevant one in town is Scot Free's trading post, which is booming as it is the only one to supply drifters like yourself with adventuring gear.
You spot a familiar red winged shape flying towards you. Seems like Soft Talon has something on his mind.
"I suppose that's all we have, unless my companion has something to add. I can only assume it was brute force damage and not some kind of magical voice stealing? Either way, thank you again, and I'm terribly sorry we couldn't do more to help."
"Thank you sir" He walks away all while forming a new theory.
All three people so far affected by these various things have been women, but why? Lady Moonlight, the Blacksmith's Daughter, and finally the Rill's Daughter. All of whom were either put in life threatening danger or corrupted. So something around here might be gathering females but for what purpose? It also doesn't explain the killings
"Yeah.. sorry for the trouble miss." Rainy follows along with Platinum as they move on.
Voleurz rolls her eyes, "Not a tree disturbed however? You folk call him a ghost, but it's size didn't scare off birds resting in the forest or anything?"
She tries to sneak one last glance at his eyes before it comes off as uncomfortable [1d10+1]Roll #1 5 + 1 = 6
"Scot Free's Trading Post," she reads out loud. "Open for business?" she muses. She begins ambling that direction. She catches sight of something flying toward her in the distance and stops to stare. She can't quite make it out. >>714050>>714053
Cinder recognizes that flying object! She waves to Soft as they come into waving distance. "Ahoy!" she shouts in greeting.
I drop down near cinder trying to wave them over.
"Well, it seems your worries of scaring it off aren't an issue. It appears just as quick to attack a pony."
[1d10]Roll #1 4 = 4
Cinder trots over to Soft. "Talon! Good to see you again. Thanks for your help earlier. I have your share of the take, as well." Cinder reaches in the pouch and pulls out 20 bits, which she hands over with an appreciative smile.
"Appreciate your help. Be happy to fight on your side again."
Whatever it was, she can't answer now. She gives you an odd look as she walks off.>>714061As you head off, you take another look back, only to find she's gone.>>714057
"What birds?" he says grimly. "There's nothin' up in the woods anymore. You can see for yourself. It's all dead. All rotted." Dalliance looks spooked.
You think you see a yellow glint in his eye, but it might be a trick of the light, or just his natural eye color.
"Thing is that I do need your help with another job of mine, as there might be a pony roaming around attacking the farms in a similiar state of your unicorn friend." I attempt to explain. "I think." I mumble.
Cinder is all ears. "Oh?? Another job, eh?" She tries to pretend she wasn't on the hunt for just exactly such a thing. "A pony on the attack, eh? Similar to Lady Moonlight?" She looks thoughtfully worried. "That could be a disaster."