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 No.721543[View All]

The party have departed the Swap Meet, embarking on a journey north-east towards the Shifting Sands. After a series of misadventures, and reuniting with Dawn, Carabas and their ally Etrigan, they have returned to the living desert, racing against time to find the Cuckoo's Egg.

Upon arriving at the Sands, they have found that their trusty compass no longer guides them towards their objective, an odd phenomenon that was not present before. They have been left to search for the vault where the Egg was kept on their own, navigating the Sands by way of memory.
603 posts and 4 image replies omitted. Click reply to view.


Aegis simply watched as Norv explained himself, then nodded her head ''I see, Your group must have been at this race against the clock for quite a while now, and with the egg in our possesion, I dont doubt Lysander with double, if not triple his efforts in stopping us. I dont blame you if you want to flee from all this with Violet and hide somewhere safe in the echoes''

Aegis paused for a moment to remove a knot of dirt from her mane ''Yes, perhaps it would be best if you did just that. Violet is in a terrible condition, and you are unstable, unfit for the journey ahead''


>Two of hours after the flight out of the hive
''Master Dawn'' Aegis gently followed after a soft knock on the wood door


The door opens on its own. Dawn's room looks immaculate; her hooded poncho is folded up neatly next to her dresser, the bed is made and tucked, and everything is clean and in its right place. It's as if the skirmish and ensuing destruction hadn't happened at all.

She's sitting on the bed lost in her thoughts. You hadn't really seen her without her hood before; she has a short, curly pink mane, unbrushed and rather wild. It's clear she's been crying again, but she swallows and forces a smile through her blindfold. "Hello, Aegis," she says weakly. "What can I do for you?"


Aegis made herself in and stood in front of Dawn ''It seems Zunden has taken a hold of the egg, and you played a big role in that, as she told me. As you know, we are going to look for a place to seal it away, hopefully forever'' Aegis went seated herself in front of the blind mare ''Now do you intent to come with us, or will do you have other plans?''


"I… I… I don't know. …I had planned on seeing this through to the end with… with…" She can't bring herself to say Carabas' name. "…But I don't think I can do this… Etrigan and I will probably leave once we arrive at the next town. And that'll be the end of that. It's for the best if we don't know where you take it, I think. If Lysander, or the Oneiromancer catch up to us, then we won't be able to give you away. …On the other hand, if we stay, we can ensure the egg is kept secret, and safe. …I just don't know what to do…" She rubs her face in exhaustion. "…Sorry. There's just a lot to think about. Ask me again later, I suppose." She forces another smile. You notice a very faint flicker in the air, as if of magic.

"Is… is there anything else you wanted to know? I'd hate to be a burden, any more than I've already been. If you need help with something, you can ask."


Aegis shook her head ''Take your time. We will no doubt have a couple of days ahead of us before we stop by the first town. If you do not know about your own plans I will bother you for those later'' Aegis bowed, and took a few steps back, closing the door but stopping halfway ''For now, you must endure, for him, for all''


"…I don't know if I can," she replies, her voice cracking slightly. She looks away, and the room flickers again, almost imperceptibly. She sinks her head into her hooves silently.


Aegis closes the door with such grace that it barely made a sound, and moved on back to the kitchen to finish salvaging scraps of food


Zunden's speaking and tonation has been much quieter and softer over the past couple of days, not out of timidness but out of being deeply humbled by the amount of suffering caused by the encounter with the Drake.
With the amount of injury around her, she finds it difficult to fully commit to healing the injuries of one or another. She cares for Rabi's leg enough to let natural healing take its course, offering some aide to Violet but only so far as to ensure she can breathe properly, having neither the time nor the concentrated energy to spend days playing plastic surgeon. As before, she spends the most time with Aurora, struggling to make sure her closest friend makes it out okay.

Still, having learned from her mistakes of taking on too much in the past, she spends time with others checking in on them, namely Dawn. Before bed in the makeshift sleeping area she's made in the dining area, she plays the lute, occasionally glancing at the sheet of music she played once before and wondering what it's true use was.

[1d10+2] Antiquarian

Roll #1 3 + 2 = 5




File: 1569892996813.webm (3.51 MB, 640x360, acoustic guitar groove.webm)


Violet's injuries and disfigurements are too extreme for you to be able to fix without intensive care. However, you set her on the path to mending, fixing her shattered face as best you can.

Etrigan is crestfallen over the loss of his friend, but seems determined to get revenge at whatever cost. Dawn, on the other hand, is absolutely distraught. She barely talks to you, and when she does she avoids the subject of Carabas as much as possible. She doesn't leave her room, save to quietly grab a few scraps of food a few times a day. If she was reclusive before, she has almost completely cut herself off from the rest of the party now.

You examine the sheet of music one night, while the moon is gibbous. You feel a strange connection between it and fate itself, as if it can somehow change your future.


leaning against one of the tables, she continues to study it, plucking at the lute and careful not to accidently slip into the sheet musics' notes as she had in the past.

[1d10] Antiquarian

Roll #1 2 = 2


After some examination, you think you understand this enchanted melody better.

>Moonlight Sonata

>A piece of music of uncertain origin. When played at night, the performer and anyone who hears it are filled with inspiration and improvement, gaining a single reroll of a failed roll to spend at any moment. The Sonata is long, and takes up to 3 turns to play in its entirety. Each subsequent turn playing thr Moonlight Sonata grants the reroll a +1 bonus, up to +2. The Moonlight Sonata can only be performed twice every lunar cycle. Depending on the phase of the moon, altering fate through the Sonata may have unforeseen side effects.


counting the days on her claws and looking out at the night sky from her strange perception, Zunden sets a pillow and presses it behind her head, make sure she's comfortable and in a meditative position, warming herself with a sun and beginning to play the music on the sheet for a second time.


[1d10+3] Moonlight Sonata

Roll #1 10 + 3 = 13


Aegis had just finished cleaning up her own quarters and was now making her way to Zunden's, her ears perked up at the melody that grew closer. She raised a hoof to knock on the door but stopped herself, instead, she slowly opened the door without a sound to peek in the room



You take a moment to focus and start playing the piece. You don't know how, but somehow you can read the notes, and they come to you naturally.You pick and strum at the lute effortlessly as if some unseen force were guiding your fingers to manifest the music of the spheres themselves.

The melody Zunden plays is almost indescribable. It is as if it had come from something beyond the scope of life and death. As the melody continues, you are filled with inspiration, as if you could do anything with just a bit more ease, more intuition, more satisfaction. It is as though you have spontaneously developed keen senses and instincts, and learned just a little more about this world. And about yourselves.
>+1 reroll with a +2 bonus to any failed roll!


Before she realized, Aegis was standing there by the doorway of the dining room, her cold eyes sparkling with the light coming from the window
When the melody died down, she came to, and raised a hoof to rub her eye
''Zunde-*Ahem* Zunden…'' She her voice cracked and she cleared her throat, making herself known ''Please excuse me, I was hoping you wouldnt be busy'' Aegis nodded before walking in


Zunden blinks a few times, seemingly coming out of her own form of stupor. She seems mildly surprised at Aegis' presence.

"Ah, Aegiz," the saurian responds much quieter than she has had in the past, rolling up the sheet of music and returning it to her bag, "I am zorry if I have woken you up, how are you feeling?"


''You havent'' She states, walking up to the cabinets to salvage whatever she could find for sustain in there ''I was hoping I could get something to eat before bed''
She looks back ''I'm feeling fine, aside from the hunger. Do you know how much longer will it take until we get to the nearest town?''


"I zail wizh Violet'z inztruction in mind, a few dayz out. I am aware zome will be leaving zhere. Are you to join zhem?"


''No. I want to come along and ensure the egg will be safely disposed of. Now more than ever we have to be careful'' She says staring out the window ''I fear for what measures Lysander will take to stop us. What if his word has already reached our destination and we'll be hunted down by the residents?''


"Zhat iz ze parameterz we have been zailing under for quite zome time now. Our only rezpite we can take iz to hope ze combinazion of my zpell and Dawn'z did not fit our normal moduz operandi. Ze chanzez are low, but I can hope perhapz he zhought it ze work of ze Dreamweaver inztead."


''We would be lucky that was the case, but I dont doubt Lysander would still make more effort to get to us than before, even if he suspects the Dreamweaver''
Aegis gives up after finding a stale piece of bread in a corner of the cabinets that was covered in mold, tossing it aside
''What will be the plan, exactly? Now that we have the egg, do you have a destination in mind? Somewhere to safely get rid of it forever?''


"While I have warded ze zhip, zhat haz not prevented ze Oneiromanzer from invading onze before. If you're allow me to view ze map or book of journiez you have read from, I intend to keep ze information zecret until we have arrived. " Zunden says softly, setting her lute down, "However, I have been mulling over the zhought of abandoning ze zhip onze we arrive zhere. It haz powerful wardz to protect from zcrying, and zhould remove the obviouz target from our backz. We would make ze return on foot."


''That's quite something to ask of the others after these past few days. Our only relief from all of this is that we didnt had to walk to our next destination, not to mention this is a priceless treasure, even if damaged'' Aegis placed a hoof on the wood walls of the ship ''But I trust your choice in this. This ship will be worthless if we, or the whole existence dies…''
Aegis excused herself and went ot quickly fetch the map and the book in her room, leviating them in front of Zunden ''Hopefully the others will understand that''


She nods, smiling a little as the items are brought to the saurian, "We ztarted wizhout zhiz zhip, zo too we'll end wizhout it. My only worriez are the journey back, we will need to purchaze camping zuppliez zhat will rezizt ze elementz."


''Quite the step-down from our current situation. I always despised camping'' Aegis says coldly as she opens the book of journeys ''Would you like me to read it for you?''


"I have heard it narrated, while piloting ze zhip. One zuch location I zhink iz zutible, given I'll likely dizpize it."

She rubs her head, "We will get by, az we have in ze pazt. Again, we will be much harder to identify wizhout ze very obviouz mode of tranzportation."


''I suppose that is true for anyone who is not Lysander or the Oneiromancer. Without the warding protecting us we will be easy to locate, and then what will we do once they come at us in their own airships?''


She grins, holding the wide away of necklaces around her necklace.

"Ah, zhat iz zomezhing I wlll work on in our travelz zhere. I have been learning more and more of ze nature of runez, I zhink I can emulate Black Pudding'z ritual to create charmz for each of uz. To affect only one individual, it zhould be much eazier zhan an entire zhip."


wide array*


''That sounds like quite the feat. From what I heard and seen, Black Pudding is quite adept, being able to mimic his work like that is impressive, Zunden. It'd also allow us to operate separatedly if we need to spread out at some point''
Aegis stares at the lizard in silence for a moment
''…What do you think Hermodur is doing with his time? I met him for a brief time but I'm wondering how he is faring on his own in this merciless realm''


"I…" Zunden drops to her own silence, closing her eyes. "He azked I truzt him, zo zhat iz what I will do. Juzt az Norvegicuz wizhez to break off from ze group at ze village, zo too will I rezpect hiz wizhez. I am not one to loze a friend, but I am learning to let go."


''That is not what I asked. But I wont press on with this subject… I had another question to ask of you. What will you do after this is all over, if we survive this whole ordeal''


"In ze zhort term? Do az Norv planz to do, take a break. Afterwardz? I do not know. Perhapz I will drift looking for ozherz zhat need guidanze, maybe continue wizh ze party we have."


''I see. I should tell you that once this is over, I was hoping to go my own way as well, and seek a path out of the echoes. Assuming no one has further need of me''


Zunden nods, "But you do wizh to follow ze egg to it'z rezting plaze, knowing you'll be be a target for knowing zhat information?"


''What is the point of doing anything else? I would rather commit to see this whole ordeal to the end and do my best to ensure we succeed than stepping away and risk everything we know to be destroyed or be ruled by Lysander. Once the realms are safe, then I can start worrying about myself''


"Fair enough. Bezidez, I zhink I know a way to uze runez to bind an individual to zheir word, zo wizh tezting we could zee if we could rezizt interrogation zhat way."


''That might not be enough. I have heard of magic used to tamper with and read memories before. If that is used against us, our efforts will be wasted. The only way to be safe would to erase the knowledge of the egg's hiding place from our minds''


"We will have to tezt ze limitz of ze of runez. Zhey are incredibly powerful, and fortunately zomezhing I have been able to pick up, unlike more arcane magicz."


''I am happy to hear that'' Aegis says, not sounding happy at all ''Perhaps in the future I will seek you again, hoping you would part your knowledge with me''


Zunden gives a soft bassy laugh, "Ah, I am no zcholar. My interezt will alwayz be firzt ze Arcana, not ze Arcane. Ztill, I would be happy for any reazon to zpeak togezher again."


''Any reason? Even if I sought you out in need of help? Because there is one more reason I might need to come to you for aid, and you know what that is'' Aegis stared at Zunden for a moment
''I have business with Lady Grosvenor''


"Of courze, zhe haz alligned herzelf wizh a tyrant and wizhez to zupprezz one'z ability to realize zheir fate, inztead confiding zhem to rot in prizon zellz. I have no qualmz wizh your tazk."


''Then I might seek you yet again in the future, but that is a task for another day. I'm sure Ragalaseab will be patient and understand the delay on fulfilling their request'' Aegis stood back up and bowed her head ''This is all I had to say for now Zunden. Do you have anything to tell me? If not, please excuse me''


"In honezty? Reztrict yourzelf from being zhort wizh ozherz. Zhey are in need of zheir time to heal. Take a pauze to dezide if zomezhing will help zomeone'z emotional ztate before conzidering vocalizing a fact or opinion."


>can't delete to fix
>assume spoilers are italics


Aegis kept her cool caze fixated on Zunden, silent for a long couple of seconds after she spoke
She simply nodded ''I understand''
And left

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