My Little Pony: Magic Is Fiendish

In a fog with Thing 1, 2 & 3

December 14, 2019
In Neighppon waiting for the compass to be fixed. Autumn is doing studies of the Kirin’s garden, Joeigh is in the library….still. HurryUp, Sunny and Aurora have gone of to see sites (whatever appeals to each). Jimmy and Shucks have gone off to see if there are any corn fields, and can only find Paddy and his rice swamps. Autumn dozes off under a tree with her sketchpad fluttering beside her. She wakes to find the sun is up again! She doesn’t see Flame, but figures she is off doing her own sketches and goes looking for food. She finds Shucks & Jimmy eating breakfast and joins them. She mutters that maybe she should find Joneigh after breakfast and asks if the others ever came back from ‘town’ last night. Jimmy says no, but that he didn’t smell smoke, so all must be well. When she goes off to the library, she bumps into Prow Lee leaving – having left breakfast for Zero Fail. He hasn’t seen Joneigh, but it is a big library. She takes some tea and goes searching. Finally finds her… at a table reading a book. They go off to find someone to ask if they should be worried about their missing friends, yet. Just as they are asking a servant about it, there is a door-gong sounding. There is a police-officer-pony saying that this pony says she is a guest at this house. It is Aurora who smells of sake… “I’ve never had such good tea before.” She was under a table in a bar waiting for her friends to come back. Joneigh wonders if they should worry about Sunny, HurryUp sometimes spells T.R.O.U.B.L.E as F.U.N. Shucks and Jimmy decide to go looking for HurryUp and Sunny.
Sunny wakes in a strange bed and an even stranger room. Her head is pounding – she is very hungover – and there are three other ponies in the bed with her. “Who are you?” “I don’t think that was tea!” “Why do ponies keep lying to me!?” HurryUp walks in… “Awesome!” “Hey, party gurl!” “What?” “You made me proud last night.” “What’d I do?” “Well….them, for starters,” she says pointing to the boi toys in the bed. “Remind me not to drink… what was that again?” “Sake!” “Yeah, that,” she moans. “I can’t wait to tell Borealis, he’ll be so proud!” “Here you should have some of this Red Eye juice…. restorative drink.” She takes it and drinks. “Burp” “Head feels less splody now.” HurryUp has no idea what part of town they are in… “We’re in a town?!” About then a group of very officious ponies run in, one of them pulls one of the three bois out of the bed, and one of them puts a piece of paper and a pen to Sunny, “Please read this, and sign it.” Seems to be a non-disclosure agreement of some sort. “HurryUp do you know what this is about.. uh HurryUp?” “You’re gonna have to run this by my lawyer, Mr. Grits of Brindlebury.” She reads the agreement over… and as it is mostly about never saying anything about last night… she signs. (The whisked away boi toy was a Kirin.) Meanwhile, HurryUp (having ninja’d away from the scene in the room) is tiptoeing away thinking she has gotten away, when she turns and one officious guys is standing there holding out a contract to her, “You forgot to sign.” “What? Oh ok, whatever,” and signs her name … with lots of misspelling.
Jimmy & Shucks are walking down the road, trying to figure out where to look next for HurryUp. A very black carriage goes by, with a black on black crest on the side. Jimmy steps out of the way so it can pass, which it does very quickly. Sunny has stumbled into Jimmy’s path. She is thankful for the shade he casts. He offers her pancakes. “Have you seen HurryUp?” “Maybe 20 min ago, but she kinda disappeared.” Shucks says “She is over there by the bush.” The lost friends have been found, even if Sunny doesn’t remember much. HurryUp will explain to her all she did on the way back in excrutiating detail. They stop en route at a spa to allow HurryUp and Sunny to clean up. About the time that Aurora sobers up and asks where everyone else is and “Why didn’t they come back for me?”, Autumn and Joneigh say that Jimmy and Shucks went looking for HurryUp and Sunny… hours ago. They leave a note for their host and head off to find the four others. At the baths HurryUp is trying to sneak up on Sunny, but as she rises from the water, her hair seems stuck on something under the water and starts pulling her back in. Jimmy dives down to try to save her and Sunny swims under to see what is going on. They manage to free her … so well she flies up like a breaching fish… and Jimmy has to catch her. Once on the side of the bath, she takes a few steps and slip-n-slides into a nearby room where Flame is dozing on a wooden bench… and HurryUp slide face first right into Flame’s tummy. Oddly, Flame doesn’t wake up! HurryUp goes to get Sunny to check out Flame. She wakes, groggy and dehydrated. She had come in for a drink of water… cause the sign outside had water depicted on it… but it was warm and she was tired so she fell asleep. Jimmy pays for all the baths they have taken. There is a mural on the wall behind her of a large ‘monster’ but it has HurryUp’s cutie mark. Jimmy gathers the rest together and they start back to their host’s home. When HurryUp steps outside the bath there is a huge earthquake.

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Button, Button, who's got the Bride?
All Plans Go Awry

October 12, 2019
HurryUp has snuck back into her room at dawn. Her mom shows up directly after and starts going over the set up for the evening’s festivities. She wants HurryUp to take the table linens over to the Towers. As See Ann leaves,

Truly peeks in and says “Oh good, you are up!” and starts to query her about bride’s maids. “I thought I didn’t like you!” “Oh but surely that is just water under the bridge by now.” “YOU are bringing up what happened under the bridge?”

When HurryUp heads back to the towers with the linens, she thinks maybe she will hide out in Night Messenger’s room today. However, as she is going down the street she hears something coming down the road (very clunking, wheezing car noise) Uncle Tom, Devil Ann McColt and her cousin Little Sandy McColt are onboard this contraption. They greet HurryUp and offer her a ride.

When they get to the Towers, the Devil Ann and Little Sandy go to see about a couple rooms and Tom finds a note left for him from Joneigh. It tells him she has moved to Autumn Gallery’s cottage and where to find a key if he needs a place to stay. HurryUp drops off the linens with Icy Garnish (as See Ann and Dooley have reserved the ballroom at considerable expense).

HurryUp offers to show her uncle the way to Autumn’s cottage. They come across Dooley en route, there is an emotional (read: laconic) exchange between the brothers and they continue on… with dad (who we should not forget is a Senior Warden in the Secret Society of Secret Keepers) peering after discreetly.

When HurryUp Ann and Tom get to the cottage, Tom makes himself at home and settles to play a couple songs for HurryUp and she falls asleep like she always has. There is a comotion outside. Constable Hobb is announcing his presence as he approaches a door of a cottage that should be empty. Tom goes out to greet and explain to him why he is there and offers to save him a glass of the best corn squeezin’s.

Meanwhile, See Ann is at the Towers with some flowers for the tables with the linens that HurryUp dropped on the tables. She bumps into Truly Whately and they chat about bride’s maids and where HurryUp might be… that Truly’s job as ‘best bride maid’ she needs to help keep track of the bride. “Oh, yes, well, I will find her.” Shortly after that, she sees HurryUp coming out of a room all disheveled. She greets her. This HurryUp looks confused but is glad to meet Truly. Truly is confused and tells her that her mom is looking for her. She asks where. Truly takes her down to the ball room. The confusion continues, until this HurryUp introduces herself to See Ann as Devil Ann McColt and relates how they got there with Uncle Tom Whately.

See Ann turns to Truly and says she still needs to see her daughter. “Of of of course, Aunt See Ann. Right away.” She goes off, looking really baffled and a bit overwhelmed. But Truly is distracted by the overwhelming manliness of Little Sandy McColt and persuades him to take her back to his room at the hotel. A bit later, Little Sandy tells Truly that HurryUp took her uncle to a cottage and the names Ms. Joneigh and Ms. Gallery were mentioned. Truly gives him a big smooch and rushes off.

Tom hears a commotion out on the patio and goes to check… finds Truly sprawled in the nettles. They chat about HurryUp and See Ann and Tom deftly lets Truly off the hook and tells her to go back to See Ann… then he goes to wake HurryUp

HurryUp Ann cleans up and they take the Squeeze-Mobile back into town.

(The Gamemaster wants to interject something here: for most of the many previous game sessions, the only hotel in Brindlebury, Garnish Towers, has had exactly two towers. A few adventures back a third tower magically appeared with elaborate suites for the Pegasus Zero Fail and his Abysinnian Colleague, Prowl Lee… then a couple of adventures back, a fourth tower magically added itself {along with a fourth staircase} for the stallion known as Night Messenger. And then, since most of the player characters plus Zero Fail and Prowl Lee left town yesterday, one of the towers has simply faded from sight and there are only three now, but still more than the normal two. Characters within the story seem to either not notice or pretend not to notice, but it is hoped that the home viewing audience is seeing all of this and is suitably amused.)

Meanwhile, See Ann has put Devil Ann to work helping with the flowers, utensils and going to the kitchen to inquire after what dishes and glassware have been assigned for their use. Devil Ann isn’t sure what exactly she is to do and little bags of flour are now set in the center of half the tables.

Eventually, Tom brings HurryUp back to the Towers. HurryUp is glad of the nap and mumbles “I love it when a plan comes together.” Her granny (Selectpony Vera Long Whatley)’s voice comes from behind her, “You have a plan, what would that be?” And before HurryUp can answer, Dooley Whately notes that HurryUp always has a plan, whether she realizes she’e being watched or not. Granny Whately asks, “Is THAT what you are wearing? Those Bandit Blue ribbons?” “But I AM a Bandit! I gots ta wear them!”

When Truly gets back and delivers the message to See Ann, she gets put to work as well.

Vera has some words with Tom, but soon they are back to not speaking. He goes in to the ballroom and asks where he should set up. See Ann points to a small bandstand and he and Lil Sandy go to set up.

HurryUp has snuck off to Night Messenger’s room, who is louging in a tub and a blobby is pouring boiling water into it. “Oh are you back already?” There is some confused discussion till they figure out that Devil Ann McColt has been to ‘visit’ him. He asks if HUrryIp would like a nice hot soak. She has to remove a few things from her mane before she joins him in the tub.

Some time later, Blobby comes in with a message that HurryUp’s Maid of Honor is looking for her. HurryUp says to send her in…. then asks her to join them in the hot tub. Truly does so and says that she thinks this is the nicest HurryUp has ever been to her… HurryUp pulls a mustache out of her mane and attaches it asking if Truly remembers it (waggle waggle). Truly never quite twigs to the fact that one of her boyfriends years ago at Hoe Camp was actually HurryUp in disguise and with a strap-on… but also Truly doesn’t resist when HurryUp and Night Messenger make advances on her in the hot tub.

Eventually, the party is set and ponies are showing up.

Icy Garnish is tut-tutering about making sure all is perfect and keeps hollaring at her husband Basil to do stuff.

HurryUp and her groom-to-be come down and now HurryUp has to introduce her fiance to the room.

See Ann has set a seating chart, but several family members have moved the placenames around according to their own agendas.

Tom didn’t sit next to his mom, but took a seat next to Constable Hobb and places a good glass of squeezin’s in front of him.

See Ann notices that Truly has been move to the table that Little Sandy is sitting (and eventually figures out that Grandma Whately moved the name tag, since Truly has no prospects, but Little Sandy is a very distant cousin who is the heir to a farm in the valley below Old Smokey)..

Grandma Whately pointedly asks what Night Messenger what he does for work (at exactly the worse moment in the conversation lull). He answers, “I am involved in the redistribution of precepts, postulates, and predictions of both the rank and file and hoi polloi.” Granny Whately is not happy with the answer, “Yes, but what do you DO.”

When Tom plays ‘Of all the relatives I’ve slept with before…’, some ghosts show up to dance. Some of the family recognize the ghosts: Great-great-great grandmother Widdy Whately; Great aunt Wilma Whately; Grand Aunt Juanita Whately; Third Cousin Twice Removed Sweet Lee Whately; Second Cousin Once Removed Sue Lee Whately; Aunt Eusta Whately. Plus a number of additional ghosts dancing with them that no one recognizes.

Before Tom can start the next song, several of the ghosts start singing “Four Sheets to the Wind in Coping-Hoffin’” and all the living ponies find themselves joining in singing and dancing to the song.

Borealis and Cousin Coronal are sitting with Hobb, who is suggesting that he should arrest HurryUp Ann for violating her parole. Borealis suggests it isn’t HurryUp but the ghosts, and wondere if he should go get Arctica to banish some ghosts.

See Ann tells Dooley to stand at the door to stop anyone from exorcising their relatives. He wonders if someone has spiked the punch and she replies that it IS his daughter’s party. He nods “Its just a haunting, they do happen at times.”

At the end of “Four Sheets…”, Night Messenger is crying next to HurryUpAnn and he manages to hug See Ann and Tom at the same time. “You really do want me in the family!" he wails.

See Ann pats him and says, "It will be alright. You will get used to our relatives.”

“But that’s my line” sobs Night Messenger.

Tom puts a strong drink in his hand and See Ann askes HurryUp if her intended needs a smelling salt? “Sounds fun, mom!” HurryUp replies.

Constable Hobb is trying to figure out how to put HurryUp in jail for the summoning, or someone. Ge just feels SOME one should go to jail for it. When Truly Whately staggers by making inappropriate comments and clearly quite intoxicated, Hobb arrests her for public drunkeness and takes her to the drunk tank.

The sketch artist See Ann Whately hired to get candid sketches records some intimate moments between Borealis Buckmister-Kimblewik and Coronal Kimblewick. But more scandalously, he catches Grandma Vera Long Whately (one of the Selectponies and Eldrers of Brindlebury) in the backroom doing ina appropriate things with Great-uncle Grits McKorn.

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The Road to Neighppon
Wish upon a compass dark

September 28, 2019
The bar in Canterlot that the rats were supposed to take Moonbeam to was the Pony Up! and ask for Swordfish. Maize has confiscated an ethereal compass from the rats…. that they used to track the group, so they could find Moonbeam. The compass was tracking the group via some mystical device that one of the guardians of Moonbean has in their possion. They thank Aunt Beryl and Uncle Augur for their hospitality and head back to Moist Eyesockets to figure out which device caused the PING. Aura uses the compass to check ponies in the room. As she gets close to each pony it reacts to Shucks, Autumn, Joneigh, and HurryUp (BIG reaction). Shucks checks his mane and goes through all he has with him. When Shucks hands the eels from his mane to Jimmy that the compass jumps from him to Jimmy “ethereels”. Joneigh is staring at HurryUp and says “Ok fess up, what do you have that set that thing off?” HurryUp is pulling out items from her ponytails including her Grave Robbing Kit (™). The compass reacts slightly to Caviar, but not as much as it still does to HurryUp herself still. Autumn pulls out a few items (goggles, card for calling dad and the snow globe). The compass reacts to none of the three. Autumn goes back to rumaging and a curmpled piece of paper falls out and the compass reacts to it. Autumn flattens it out and looks at it – it is a receipt from the Three Sisters with a random postit note stuck to it. She pulls them apart and holds them faaaaaaarrrr apart, and the compass quivers between the two. Joneigh looks as if she is going through her saddlebags and she is just shaking her head, murrmering to herself “no… not that… nope”. When HurryUp pulls out her copy of the Pre-Nup, the compass does the violent reaction again – aimed at the Pre-Nup. Autumn asks if anything is written on the back of the compass. Joneigh wonders aloud if Aura can skry? Aura turns it over and looks at the bottom of the compass and [never finds out what Aura sees there]. Aura looks through her book of spells and finds a spell called Buckminster’s Virginal Restoration (and is disgusted) on the page right before the one with Taverner’s Historical Prvenance (skrying). She is studying the spell and there is a knock on the door and a penguin hands them a letter to HurryUp. It seems to be a form letter to “known criminals” about the bounty on Moonbeam, with a note to destroyed the note after reading. The rats bought the compass in the black market, the vendor there got it from a cataloge, it was made in Neighppon by a Kirin and it was delivered for him by Prow Lee. So that didn’t help the group much. So she tries the spell on the letter HurryUp just got, and it was mainly post-office ponies and back to a basement in Canterlot by a goat doing a BUNCH of them. It is suggested that they should maybe go to Canterlot to burn that down. Aura wants to know if the compass could be recalibrated to track down where the missing periapts are located. It was suggested that the original maker could maybe do that. There is dicussion about going to Neihppon and Joneigh wonders if Prow Lee’s car could fly. Aura says her vision showed him driving over the ocean. They pack up for travel. Autumn writes notes to Constable Hob and Egg White letting them know the group is travelling further asea. Aura asks Prow Lee if they will need anything special in Neighppon and HurryUp wonders if they will even need money. Joneigh will suggest that the maker of the compass might want payment… or maybe just HurryUp’s firstborn. A note appears that says with the way time has been working “here” that could be hard to discern (first baby). They all bid Maize farewell.
They climb into Prow Lee’s car and head out across the desert and thru some towns and then heads across the ocean…Zooming. Soon they see Mt. Apple (Fuji) rising ahead of them and they are driving up on to the beach. Zero Fail suggest he can’t drive this fast in inhabited areas and Prow Lee says “Yes I can”. He comes to a stop in front of the artisan’s door. “Let me go in to talk to him in case he is in a mood.” “Uh oh” says Autumn. Prow Lee goes to the door, soon there is an argument and the Kirin is yelling into Prow Lee’s face. Zero Fail steps out and the Nishi Kara greats him with enthusiasm and more or less forgives Prow Lee… and “Oh you brought Guests?!” They climb out of the car and are introduced to him. He offers tea and food to all but Prow Lee, whom he tells to go park the car and come around the back. He asks Autumn if she is Autumn Gallery from Brindlebury? Autumn freezes… Yes? He asks about a specific series of paintings. She starts to answer and then asks how he knows about those painings. “I bought one”. Oh!! Prow Lee finally joins them and the Kirin deigns to let him. Aura has brought a thank-you-host gift of a bottle of wine. Zero Fail tells Niushi about Joneigh’s book collection and so he “drags” her into his library. The group doesn’t see her for HOURS and if she even thinks about ‘lifting’ a book she sees that he notices immediately – so she puts it back. Zero Fail sidles up, notes the title and whispers that he can get her a copy. Aura tells the Kirin what they are there for -business. Shows sketchs of what the group hopes to track down. They hope the compas they brought can be fixed to do this. “Have you asked the noxious one if he is collecting them for some reason?” Aura gets quiet and waits. Prow Lee says that he hasn’t (explains reasons). Nishi Kara asks Zero Fail if Prow Lee is lying. No. “This could take several days, have you made arrangements for somewhere stay? I have several rooms avaialble if you would stay here.” Aura accepts graciously. Autumn asks if he has a garden is that she could go to to study trees while he is working out the problem of how to do this requested project. He says of course. Joneigh hasn’t left the library. Aura wants to explore the town and try the food and festivities. HurryUp is going out whoring.

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Rats! It is a Sandcrawler.
Black lights all lie.

August 24, 2019
In Rotten Hoof, everyone wakes. The Deathless beneath the town is Firefrost, now to figure out where to put the periapt goes. The group discusses how to find where to start looking. They decide that maybe asking Maise as she knows about weird stuff. Aura asks the bartender where the weird stuff or fun is. “You mean the pit?” “Really, we have one of those at home!” Other places to see are the Moisture Farms, the New Library, and this tavern. Joneigh wonders if Zero Fail or Prow Lee might know where to look. The Stormsurge is the periapt that we have with us (blue stylized wave thing). Autumn says that she is leaning toward the Moisture Farms, not sure why. Zero Fail says “First, we have through the Black Market” “No we don’t,” counters Joneigh. “The way down is through the Market.” Joneigh really wants to find another way to go down without going through there. Autumn asks Aura if she has ever teleported. “Not often,” says she. Joneigh asks “and not somewhere you have never seen?” “That would be dangerous.” Prow Lee yawns as he enters. “What is dangerous?” “Trying to teleport somewhere you have never seen.” “Yes, it is.” He asks what they are discussing and they explain. Autumn wants to know if there is a detect magic spell. No one is sure. But Zero Fail suggests it might be in a book and if we found it that Aura could do it! Aura doesn’t understand why Joneigh doesn’t want to go through the market. She and Autumn do a Q&A about Joneigh being different and afraid she wouldn’t be allowed back OUT. Joneigh digs into her bag and starts handing magic books to Autumn who looks at them and shows promising ones to Aura. They find one that looks promising. They follow Aura outside to try the spell. Her horn glows and drags her to the Coach. Then the bar. Across and thru the kitchen to the Ice Room. Autumn holds the door open as Aura goes inside. At the back is a suspiciously pony-shaped package with a note upon it to not open it until a specific date (not today) from Maise. Aura continues on to some vents in the back wall, from wence some very cold air is coming. She pulls off the vent to see what is causing it… she sees a fan behind a black flickering flame. The flame is actually obsidian and has a base that looks like any periapt base we’ve ever seen. Joneigh says it is The Black Flame (binds Firefrost here). There is a postit on on HurryUp’s nose. You sound ask Sand Dream how she got it. Joneigh suggests they go back to the bar to see if Sand Dream is around. “Oh good, I don’t have to arrest all of you.” She is standing in the doorway. Autumn decides to ask Maise how it got here. She says it was put there a long time ago. Aura asks if Maise knows if there are similar thing nearby. “There are many within a few miles of here.” “We are trying to put one back that isn’t where it used to be.” Maise says they should all go talk to her boss… who is in her office.
Sand Dream’s office has a desk and lots of ledgers on bookshelves. “My what a lot of ponies! May I help you?” Autumn explains. Sand Dream gets up and walks around, reading spines of ledger books, “Let’s see.” “I think this is the one.”Pulls it down, blows the dust off and starts flipping through it. G-G-G-grandmother got the flame with the help of a moisture farmer by the name of Klegg. “Does it say WHERE they got it?” asks Joniegh. “It says here, it started at the bottom of a well.” She says that Augur is Klegg’s G-G-G-grandson, so it should be on his farm. She points to a place on the map. Maize figures it has to be her that goes as Whoopsy is out of town. Joneigh offers to copy down the place on the map and go out without someone to introduce them. “I have to keep my eye on the disreputable ones.” she says as she eyes Aura. They get in the Coach and using the directions Autumn & Joneigh have marked on the toursit map, head off to Augur’s Moisture Farm… out in the sandy desert. Maize gives some minute directions as they get close. They park and get out into the blazing sun. Sunny is blinded by the glare until Maisey fixes a little parasol on her. “There, that should keep you from getting burnt.” “You probably should not mention your family name” she says to Aura. They discuss why. Aura pulls the bellpull by the door. An elderly earthpony opens the door, “Hello Sheriff whats going on.” “Just some tourists here wanting to see the Moisture Farm.” “Is it tourist season already?” She starts showing them around, the sand, the great magnifier between the sun and the desert…put there by Celestia, she thinks. Zero Fail comments that it is The Black Light, another of the periapts, not the great magnifier. More sand, and the southern vaperators. Augur is at the east vaperators, but you can’t see them from here. She leads them a ways, “If we go over that way, there is the Dead Well and the old house.” [something about glass from old house to new?] They are led past the dead well toward the house. Autumn pulls out the goggles and peeking through them at the well to see what it looks like. At that moment Sunny & Joneigh hear a rumble off to the west. Autumn puts them away. Joneigh borrows HurryUps telescope and looks to the west. “Uh oh”. She sees something black now rolling toward us. Joneigh hides behind Jimmy. HurryUp goes over, pries up the lid and looks down the well. The rest of the group go to the old house’s ‘former structure’. Meanwhile, HurryUp is doing a chimney walk down the well. Jimmy follows her. She makes it most of the way down, then slips and face-plants the last foor or so. Jimmy drops next to her. There are a bunch of boards nailed on the wall down here. Danger, Do Not Enter. Jimmy hands her the prybar. ::SKREECH:: When their guide (Beryl) realizes two of them have gone down the well, she totters back to the new house for the rope ladder. Joneigh flyes down the well. Once the doors are off of the wall and they start into the tunnel. Joneigh follows. Jimmy is the first to notice that this is a tunnel, not just a natural cave… someone dug this. There is graffitti on the walls. It is going NNW (they came SSE to get here). The tunnel twists, turn and going downwards. Sunny stumbles and Maize is right there to help her. Evetually the tunnel comes to an end. HurryUp just misses stepping out into the abyss that is there.
“Hello down there!” “Hello up there!” “Are you msising something?” “I’ve fallen and I can’t get up.” “I really need help.” They move and jostle to let Shucks close to the lip of the abyss. “Squeeeek, Squeeek” Then he listens. “I don’t think we have enough rope, it is 1200 ft down.” Aura & Sunny make a floating disk for everyone to float down on. Joneigh opts to fly down. As they reach the bottom, lights come on. They can see stairs going down, some carved columns and there are shelves with maybe piles of clothing and pony statues with clothing (moth eatten) on them. And an etreeeeeeeemly elderly earth pony with a white mane with blue stuff brushed in it, she has lots of make up on…her cutie mark is a comb. “The help has finally come.” “And I am unanimous in this.” Aura can tell the clothing is at least 5 generations old. She has been trapped down here for a long time. She has lost her pussy. She says she heard it was the 3rd best tourist place in town, so she went down and then she fell. Autumn remembers some strange comic stories about ponies that ran a store and one that said I am unanimous a lot. Autumn decides she is fabricating. They ask Prow Lee if he doesn’t recognize her. The group cover all their light and Zero Fail lifts his firey sword. The dugeon is empty except for pony skeletons and the old lady is a Black Latern carved from black marble and is on that pariapt base they are familiar. The shadow cast sighs “You can’t blame a pony for trying.” “Who are you?” “The King of Shadows.” “So you are stealthy and you can teach me.” Aura pulls her back from the latern. Joneigh says that this is The Black Light. If you do have StormSurge, she belongs at the bottom of the well, like I belong here. “It would be so much easier to protect Firefrost if all of us are here.” Joneigh grabs Autumn and flys up the shaft. When they get there, lights come on and there is a young earth pony there with all the trappings like below, but much more current. “Hello! Are you being served.” Joneigh says yes very rudely. The pony keeps trying to “help” Autumn and Joneigh. Joneigh says if she comes anywhere near, she will be kicked in the nose. Autumn uses her earthpony STOMP. “Would you just go away!” The others, on their way up on the Aurora’s Foating Disc and hear the elevator voice and notice a slight earthquake. They arrive and with Zero Fail’s sword held aloft. The shop stuff disappears and the shadow from the lantern seems to have extended up here. The Black Light keeps trying to get them to ask it for help. When the get back to the bottom of the well, Joneigh asks Aura to try her new spell to see if there is a hole here where there used to be magic? Her horn is drawn to the rocks strewn around the floor. It is a PUZZLE, Shucks! He is excitedly putting together the lava ‘plug’. It is getting bigger so some of the group goes up…HurryUp gets to the top and there are hundreds of tiny kangaroo rats in hooded robes and the big black transport. Maize asks Jimmy to buck her up there, he does and follows. Prow Lee and Zero Fail follow up. Joneigh has flown up and fas the flames with her wind and tosses lightning at the transport. Jimmy and HurryUp jump right in and Sunny sends fire the other direction. There are just two rats left on their knees when the group still below finish the puzzle and put that last piece is stomped in by Shucks. And it starts to vibrate. The rest come up out of the well to carnage and water bubbles up, overflows for a moment and then settles to just below the top of the well. The transport got hit with enough lightning that the boiler blew and it is destroyed. There are little bodies all around the group. “Now you don’t need those vaperators” says Aura. She looks over to Maize “You know being Sherrif takes lots more skills than I realized.”
They interrogate the two prisoners. Why did you take these two hostage? Why were you lying in wait up here? What were you looking for? Because of the large bounty that has been put on Moonbeam to be captured and brought to Canterlot. The goggles brought the group to their attention. Aunt Beryl & Uncle Augur invite us in for refreshment, as the group did save them. They have some prickly pear juice and spiney bisquits. They look around and HurryUp sees a painting of Uncle Augur’s older brother with an honorable discharge signed by Huntfield Kimblewick and she says something. She has to backtrack and lie a bit to calm Augur who says Kimblewick?!?!”

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Bucking Custard

July 27, 2019
[Time warp to earlier in the afternoon] Sunny had done her usual rounds and updated the records in the morning. She also spent time with Borealis. Then while she is doing inventory, she hears the bell on the door tinkles. She turns to find a dark blue unicorn pony with bright silvery colored mane & tail, and a cutie mark that looks like an eclipsed sun. “Hello?” “Coronal!” “Borealis!” The new pony leaps over the counter and lands on one knee before Borelis with flowers and a piece of jewelry and says “We should totally run off now [gene needs to add stuff here]” Sunny is speechless, doing the slow blink with her jaw slowly dropping. Borealis is stammering and introduces Coronal to his girlfriend Sunbeam. “Girlfriend? GIRLfriend” Sunny gives a sheepish grin, “uh, Hi?” Coronal backpedals like it was a joke, just done for shock value. He apologies to Sunny, turns and hands the flowers to Sunny “These are obviously for you!” “This is my cousin Coronal – you know, my grandfather was trying to force my sister to marry him?” “Where should a visiting family member take you all to lunch?” “Garnish Towers?” offers Sunny. They go to find their late lunch. Garnish Towers has always had two towers… but now it has four towers! The newest has at least one weird room that Sunny can see through the window, it is upside-down. They have an interesting lunch with them all pretending nothing weird is going on here at all… mostly. Scattered strange little comments, from time to time, referencing something in their past about Borealis that Sunny didn’t know about him. Usually about past relationships of Borealis’. Sunny eventually has enough and excuses herself back to the clinic, leaving them to carry on their banter.
Clinic door tinkles and Sunny puts down her paper in exasperation, “Hello?” It is Sweetgrass. “If some pony, and I’m asking for a friend, if some pony was in trouble… she would come to you, right?” Sunny says yes, if her friend thinks she is in trouble she should come in right away. Sweetgrass asks if anyone has come in recently. Sunny quotes confidentiality. Sweetgrass gallops away and Sunny can hear her say “Its a definate yes, HurryUp is preggers!” “See this is how small town rumors start!” HurryUp comes by… following the gossiphoulds… and tells Sunny “Next time just make stuff up!” Sonny glances at her Do No Harm vow, but HurryUp says that is Medical not Rumor rules! Later, while HurryUp is doing errands, she will hear speculation on how long she has been pregnant. She will sneakily say that it has been months. The conclude that although she is carrying it well but this wedding has to be on the fast track. Sonny frets that maybe she shouldn’t have left the cousins alone and looks out the window for the umpteenth time… and wonders why the the sun is still at its zenith. She hurrys out to find the cousins and on the way she sees a bunch of ponies pointing off to the east. She stops and turns and sees that where twilight and the moon usually pops up, she can see the colors of twilight and the blue sky doing a tug of war on the horizon. This goes on for a while and there are murmers and suggestions of ‘that time when the Mare in the Moon did this..’ Then suddenly the moom pops up into the middle of the sky and the earth shakes beneath their hooves. “That isn’t natural” “What just happend” “Well, I’ll be”
There is speculation about the moon being bigger than it usually is, no it is normal, no it is bigger even for this time of the year. Joneigh says to Autumn & Moonbeam that it sorta seems closer somehow. “It seemed much bigger when we were there.” Autumn reacts with “Ok that’s a new thing, right? The path will go back, right? I don’t like that the gravel path goes thru the fire pit now.” “Popcorn?” offers Night Messenger. Joneigh & Jimmy can actually spot things moving around on the surface of the Moon, which is just not normal. “She can’t bring that here, can she?” muses Joneigh. “That would cause a lot of problems” answers Night Messenger. Autumn, Moonbeam and Joneigh go back to worrying about safety issues.
Jimmy & Joneigh try to make out what they are seeing on the moon, a castle and something that has crashed on it and now a lot of the moving bits are flying off toward it. Jimmy thinks that the crashed thing looks like the Aluminum Falcon. Joneigh mumbles “Is that a Manticore
” and Autumn pulls out her new card and starts making incoherant exclamations at it. Joneigh follows her around trying to calm her down. Aumtumn mumbles about ‘our dad’ and ‘did they crash’ and tries to focus her telescope on the crash site on the moon. She can see Grand & Choosey and 2 unicorns with weird masks with hoses going to their backs. The unicorn is the blank flank they met in Moist Eyesocket, and the other is one she met in Windsmouth (Starbeam). She tells Joneigh. Jimmy wonders about a bicycle pump they have? And it looks like Grand and Choosey were arguing back and forth with the pump. “Did you crash? WHY DID YOU GO THERE?” “I am trying to talk some sense into your Father”. “Wait, like, what?” “Leave her out of this!” “Well, it is getting closer… make a jump for it” suggests HurryUp. They hear through the card “Ok, you stay and fix the ship and you youngsters get to the control room. No, you keep the card!” as he storms off getting bigger with each step toward the castle, passing the mask to one of the yougsters. “Can you do that?” asks Jimmy of Autumn. She freezes and thinks and wonders if she should even try. “I have a corn cassarole that can make you FEEL that you can.” Grand seems to banter to the leader of the bat ponies. There is a single alicorn flying from the castle toward Grand and is getting bigger as she gets closer to him. “She’s really putting on the weight!” HurryUp says of Nightmare Moon, “Maybe SHE’s the one who’s preggers?” Joneigh is wondering about Zero Fail & Prow Lee could help, Sunny wonders if she and all the town unicorns could boost a teleport and HurryUp wonders if Night Messenger could make a portal and make her bigger at the same time to put her hoof through ala Monte Python. NM says he could .. but then she would be in HER realm. “Oh there you are, what’s going on? Yes, all the deathless are getting angry with each other?” Prow Lee says as they walk up. “STARTING?” says Zero Fail. “Wait, can we help them and who exactly is Grand’s sister?” asks Autumn. [gene needs to fill in whatever the hell PL and ZF are going on about the fighting] “Oh that’s right, she’s not in those books, The Lady of the Harvest.” “What about the moon getting closer? Maybe she can’t get here, what if it lands here?” “Yes, it would probably roll around and crush half of Equestria, I would expect.” Joneigh asks Zero Fail if her landing it would be even possible. He thinks about it and looks really worried and then looks a little broken. “I can’t think of a rule of magic that would prevent it.” There is more discussion. “If you really want to distract Luna, Jimmy should be the one to throw the custard!” says NM. Prow Lee says “The way you looked at me, you make me think you actually listen to me.” There is banter back n forth. We suggest they just do the custard thing! Autumn asks Prow Lee where would be safe for Moonbeam and why we are asking. He and and Zero Fell argue about it for a bit and settle on Moist Eyesockets because of the binding spell and that it is Slays Clean…erm Maisey’s home. Jimmy and Prow Lee work the custard magic with NM. There is a custard pie on the moon which covers all of those on the moon except a blimp. Now they look more mad. “I was just trying to get them to come to their senses…” mutters Jimmy. Joneigh will suggest they are less mad at each other and more at those who sent the custard. Prow Lee’s ship transport shows up. It is suggested that we move Moonbeam now… but Hob suggests that NM and HurryUp have to stay cause her mom is cooking a BIG dinner for her prospective Son-in-Law. Luna is bound to the moon, and Joneigh says “But … her agents can and then Egg White is suddenly there and says but we’ve destroyed three of them already.” NM has been distracted by his infatuation but suddenly says “Wait, what split?” and is caught up. He suggests that he can transport her back for dinner. NM gets on his knee and asks if HurryUp would like for a while she can be in two places at once? She just starts doing the evil princess laugh. He grabs her and kisses her and there are now TWO HURRYUP ANNS. “Ok lets get them out of here now!” and Joneigh grabs the closest HurryUp and drags her toward the transport. Aura looks around and asks where Borealis is. Sonny stammers and tries to explain. Autumn mentions Coronal and flowers and where Borealis is. Aurora just stares at her and mumbles about the cousin and wonders about the flowers and then get flustered and then says “Well maybe we should leave them to work that out!” There is more banter and Joneigh checks with Sunny and then starts herding everyone into the coach. “To Rottenhoof, then!” NM tells HurryUp and Joneigh “You are in two places at once, but you won’t know what the other is doing until you merge again.”
The sun tried to come up and the moon quivered in the sky and there is more back and forth and POP the sun is up. It is morning.There is impossible travel by coach, lots of speed and lots of skreeching and some yelling. Then they are there. “Remember the coach is climate controlled, it will be HOT outside.” They hurry from the car, thru the hot and into cold of the Moist Eyesocket tavern. A penguin with a towel over one wing and asks if they want a table for …counting… fourteen? “Yes, please.” says Joneigh. He offers menus and waddles off. There is a bartenderpony (not Maisey) he is milk chocolate this a lifesavor cutie mark. He shows up at the table, He says “Oh, Prow Lee – I’ll get your regular” and suggests the drink of the day, the Tea Party Sunrise. The drinks come, food is ordered and shows up. Joneigh takes Aurora up to the bar to ask for rooms. There is nomming and sipping. After a while, Maise shows up and stops by, leans in to Sunny “So, no Borealis?” “Do you need to do some comiserating time?” “Um, no?” But behind her Aura is nodding her head at Maise. “Oh let me get you a better drink” and takes the Tea Party Sunrise and comes back with a glass with green liquid, some cherries and a slice of citrus. “I like cherries” “That’s what he said.” Maize looks at Prow Lee “Tony” “Clean, it’s been awhile.” “East Spurlin?” “Yes.” and Maize goes back to the bar… Shucks says “Maisey!” and follows her with Jimmy. They finish and the bill comes and Aurora grabs it. All of Sunny’s drink/food was ‘on the house’… and the drink she made special was the Heartbreakers Lullaby. Everyone goes up to sleep. Sunny dreams good childhood dreams. Maize likes her.
Back in Bridlebury, HurryUp and NM are doing more of their romantic walks and stuff. NM suggests that maybe they should work on getting him pregnant. HurryUp is confused on how this works, does she need to grow something…or….”. He thinks and replies something about that binary thing. “How do you want to do it, darling, it is still your egg and my sperm…” “Lets try them all, to be sure.” NM goes all heart-eyes at her again. “Gotta make sure it takes, after all.”

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The Arrival
Don't let the sun go down on me

June 22, 2019
[Significant milestone met]
The group still has one periapt and most feel that they should return it to the desert, but everyone wants to go home to rest and check on things first.

Just as Aurora wakes, a new newspaper from Canterlot is delivered. Seems her relative tried to kill the Princess and there was a prison break. She sent a letter to her dad about this. Then she heads down for tea and to see if Aunt Arctica knows aught.

Joneigh & Autumn find Moonbeam in the kitchen asleep at the table. Joneigh makes him tea and Autumn starts making breakfast and they ask why he feel asleep there. He’d had a dream about a jailbreak.

At the Whately Mill, HurryUp’s mom is waking her. “When were you going to tell me you got engaged?” “Today!” The pre-nup signed by her ‘fiance’ is piled in the corner. “So who is this pony and when are we going to meet him/her/them?” HurryUp says “I think you will like him, maybe, I hope.”

Jimmy is checking on the farm and Shucks is upgrading the manageries’ environments.

Sunny is checking in at the clinic and spending some alone time with Borealis.

Arctica says that she has heard that there is some political fallout from when Huntfield went into hiding in the first place. “He was ordered to eliminate an entire family and he decided that the children should be spared.” “That sounds like a bad assignment… um… uh… which family.”

She explains about a unicorn family. “The WhiteSuns” with many famous mages that there was a prophecy that one of the descendants would assassinate Celestia.

At another table, Prow Lee is showing Zero Fail his obituary and Zero Fail does that same back to Prow Lee. They are arguing about bodies and assumptions.

Hob is doing extra patrols looking for any zomponies that may have been missed.

HurryUp Ann is reading the pre-nup and checking her lawyer’s notes. The main things HurryUp Ann cares about; the Dark Stallion will help her become Deathless, they are free to have outside lovers, and HurryUp will never give birth to thousands (or hundreds, or tens, or any multiple above twins {and the latter only if agreed upon before conception} ) are there. The Dark Stallion added a note the latter that the same limits apply to him.

Notes were sent to Maizey by Autumn about getting addresses for GrandMeadow and Choosey and sending hers to them and Aurora about trying to get a message to Huntfield.

Letters are beginning to pile up next to Aurora’s brass dragon-mail dohicky, including a package that looks like it may include a book. Many are from family members. Aurora skims the notes first before opening packages. The book turns out to be The Hero of Yakmandu Valley (a whitewashed version of family history). Aura’s Canterlot family are all being interviewed by authorities about Huntfield.

Aurora goes to see Joneigh and Autumn. She asks if Joneigh has seen the paper, and shows it to Joneigh. She explains some of what she has read about Aurora’s great grand uncle and that he is a hero in her book. Then she asks about spell books and both Autumn & Joneigh both start and say, you need to be more specific. Joneigh goes into house for a book and brings out “Spells Your Mom Didn’t Tell You About”. “I’ve read that” “But did you do the exercises?” says Egg White who appears behind Aurora. Joeigh digs in her bag and hands Aura “Spells Good Lil Unicorns Shouldn’t Know About”. Aura thanks both Joneigh and Egg White.

Autumn gives her basket of herbs to Moonbeam and says she is going to town to check mail. She arrives just as the daily coach comes into town. A new unicorn pony is on it and is unloading several truncks. He is silver with gold mane & tail with a partially eclipsed sun as a cutie marks. He asks about Borealis. Seems he is a cousin of theirs, Coronal Buckminster. He thanks her and moves off. Autumn watches him go, thinks he is nice… distracted, but nice. As she asks about the mail, she sees that her letter to Maisey is just now going out. She checks her mail and the office. Then she starts to go to the clinic to see if Borealis is there. She bumps into Jimmy who is bringing popped corn to the stand and says the other Autumn wanted to try out the new corn-based conditioner. “It makes everything silky and smell like corn.” He offers it to her to sniff.

They notice somepony getting out of the other door of the stage before it heads out of town. He is a very black shade of black and has a cutie mark that Autumn remembers from the back of their “Calling Cards”. Autumn says “You aren’t as tall as I expected” then clamps her hoof over her mouth in horror that she said that. There are green blob things pulling luggage out of the coach. “Am I not as tall as you expected? I didn’t want to intimidate my future in-laws.” Another tower has appeared at Garnish Towers. Jimmy suggested that he doesn’t need to be bigger, but that he should stop at the spa as his tail is abit ratty. The black stallion heads off to the Towers with luggage and blobbies.

Luna Seed sees Jimmy outside and sticks her head out of the store’s door and hollars that he has a stack of mail and one is from mom! “Hot Diggity!” and goes to get his mail – he wants to read that letter from mom. She wants to know if she sends Cornsilk (a brother who’d been exiled) out to him, could he put him to work.

HurryUp notices the stallion arriving and sneakys out of school to follow him and the blobbies. Basil is at the front desk when the stallion enters. He signs in as Night Messenger. “Yes, you do have a reservation. Here are your keys to suites four??? oh one through four oh four.” And he looks over to a wall were there wasn’t a stairwell yesterday and sees a forth starwell. They go up into the fourth tower with Mountainberry. He gets a glimpse inside the room, which looks a bit like an Escher painting “… who knew gravity is just a suggestion?”

The blobs start unpacking and the Stallion says “Dear, did you want a room here, too?” HurryUp says that she is just making sure all is ok. “I’m here for the official meeting of the parents”. He makes some small talk while the blobs unpack. He excuses himself and goes looking for Autumn. He hands another one of those cards to Autumn and another to Bone. There is a picture of Grand Meadow on the cards. They both look a little startled and thank him. He trots off in the direction of the Towers. The girls tuck the cards away for use later. They turn to Jimmy to offer to help take the conditioner thing to the Spa.

At the salon, somepony is there getting their mane styled. There is gossip about the cat and pegasus in the new third tower of Garnish Towers and all about the maybe-engagement of HurryUp and is she maybe pregnant. Autumn G. tries to straighten out their thinking only to muddle the gossip further.

Atutumn heads home to tell Joneigh about the arrival of the Dark Stallion as the Fiance and about the cards he gave to Bone and her. They talk about what she may talk to Grand about. Joneigh offers the string board for organizing her questions. Then the card says “There isn’t time for all that just now” and startles Autumn & Bone. The voice says “Do you know someone called Moonbeam? Well, you need to keep an eye out for people coming to hurt him”. “Who should we look for, more pegasus ponies?” “If you’re lucky, she will just send the palace guards…” and the it goes quiet.

They put the cards away and look up at Moonbeam and ask if he still feels safe of if he’d like to go somewhere else, but that they want his safety. “You are listening to what a voice from a CARD is telling you?” “Well.. yes.” They look to Joneigh for confirmation and she agrees. Moonbeam says “I’m more worried that the sun isn’t down near the horizon like it should be?”

They all look out the window at the bright sun at the top of its daily arc.

Jimmy & Shucks notices the sun is in the wrong part of the sky. The Dark Stallion appears neaby. “How much for the popcorn”. Jimmy tells him. “Do you want butter dear?” HurryUp fades into view, “Yeah butter is great!” They look to the east to see that the twilight doesn’t seem able to arrive. Hob & Aurora are walking along and she is babbling along and stops to ask “What are you looking at?” “I am wondering why sunset hasn’t happened yet."

They run into Jimmy, Dark Stallion, HurryUp… who she is reminded is HurryUp’s fiance. Suddenly there is a loud CRACK and the moon rises in the east and the sun SETS. It is now night. Now there are storm clouds brewing in the east and there is an aurora visible and then there is an earth tremor.

Night Messenger says “That didn’t last as long as I thought it would, still … interesting.”

“Moonlight strolls are just so much more romantic, don’t you think dear?”

“Yes!” and HurryUp mutters, what WAS that?

“The sun just didn’t want to go down.”

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Lich Madness

May 25, 2019
[Offstage voice] So, HurryUp, who’s your maid of honor? “Aurora, of course”. Aurora is looking in the mirror and is wearing the most hideous seafoam green and blood red trim dress. “Is the veil ready?” ‘Of course it is.” Autumn looks in (her dress matches Aura’s) “Are we ready to line up yet?” They line up for the procession. There is a mostly black stallion waiting at the front of the Community Hall. HurryUp’s grandma is officiating. Later in the cemetary (at the reception), Joneigh is watching Tom in the band. Prow Lee is drunk, after being one of the groomsmen… “6000 of nothing and then here is a tux be there at noon!” he is grumbling. Another groomsmen is Agent Ayyyyaaaa who was confused… except HurryUp Ann… ok.

The happy couple is having their first dance. One of HurryUp’s cousins is carrying Caviar’s skull around on a pillow (he was a groomsmen). A bolt of black eldrich enery comes out of nowhere… aimed at HurryUp, but misses and hits the cousin and skull. On the other side of the room is a skeletal unicorn tries to take HurryUp’s ring “Ahha! The fifth bit and I can become Deathless instead of YOU… hahahahahaha!” Aura blasts her; she misses and hits a random pony in the crowd. Sonny also shoots and hits the skeletal unicorn and Jimmy bucks the punch bowl and hits her too. The ring pops off, hob tries to catch it but it bounces off, Autumn misses and Joneigh tries, but it is too slippery… and then Jimmy reaches and catches it! [Does that mean that Jimmy is married to the Dark Stallion?].

Everyone realizes they have had a nightmare. Autumn and Joneigh are discussing theirs and the ‘blood on the swamp’ dresses. Floating in the window: “Hideous dress!” from Aura during her morning run. Caviar complains he was disintegraged before seeing the wedding night. HurryUp says ‘Wedding night’. Sonny is running to see if Sweet Grass is still alive (the one that got disintegated in the dream), get destracted by the screaming from HurryUp’s room. Caviar is still upset, Sonny says I saw it too.

There is a knocking at Autumn’s door, Moonbeam opens it – it is Autumn McKorn. “You are late, Autumn Gallery!” “For what?” “Maze training!” She has a smokey bear hat on that says Corn Maze Sergeant. They have been practicing raising a maze. Autumn apologizes to her and calls for Bone and Flame and goes out. Joneigh and Shucks have been devising cloud cover for the maze and cloud eels and lighning! Next Autumn McCorn goes to find HurryUp. Aura goes looking for Egg White to ask for a spell of invisibility. He is working with Autumn McKorn set up where the pits should go in the Maze. She asks and explains that she wants to shoot pegasuseseses without being noticed…erm attacked. Then he disappears mid blink.

“Can you do that again, but more slowly?” His voice comes from 5 different places “You said whatever I am hiding behind will disappear eventually, so what am I hiding behind.” “The Air.” “Interesting guess.” “I can not be noticed, but and don’t be insulted, but I don’t think you can NOT be noticed.” He starts showing her how to increase what she really is good at… being noticed.” Found a note on HurryUp’s flank “I’m still reading the pre-nup your lawyer sent. I thought Grits McKorn retired years ago!” Grits hands her a letter, telling her that HE was informed to negotiate through him. She asks how to get the rest of the 4/5ths of the things to become Deathless. The note shows up saying that he isn’t sure that SHE would be willing to give up the periapts on her body. Another note… “I strongly advise that you don’t agree to this.” The note is offering her a ‘trump’ cad for direct dial. “What’s this gonna cost me?” “Trust me.” “I don’t! And you shouldn’t trust me, either. I don’t tell anyone that!” “Very well, I will wait until I finish reading and sign the Pre-Nup.”

Zero Fail steps into the middle of the swamp and unveils himself and then Prow Lee steps up next to him, snapping huge claws appear… “You don’t think I’m going to let you do this alone, did you?” Then Zero Fail pulls the big flaming sword out. In the far distance there is an aurora in pinks and blues with flashes of blue. A cold wind blows and a shadow seems to pass over the stars and moon for just a moment.

The skeleton pony appears at the opposite side of the swamp, with 9 undead unicorn and 9 undead earth ponies around her… and in the air 9 undead pegasuses. “Zero Fail, how nice to see you again.” “No the words I would use.” She asks if they are just their to hide the chained book and that annoying Windsmoth pony that has been wandering around her. Zero Fail replies that it couldn’t be left with someone who could be harmed by it.

Black eldrich energy flares out.

The maze starts to burst forth from the earth and then Joneigh casts storm magic to create clouds and lightning. There is a funny noise and a very large cork flies across the field and bounces off the nose of the skeletal pony’s nose. Corn is bursting up around the minion ponies and the skeletal pony looks to where the cork came from and fires in that direction. Aurora notices that it is Hob with a blunderbuss that shoots corks. Aurora grabs the cork with levitation and hurls it at the lich pony’s horn again.

Jimmy makes a part of the Maze up in front of the bolt of black and BOOM there is black popcorn everywhere. Autumn tried to send a pit/crack toward Her, but didn’t take swampy into the mix. Aurora’s spell only hits her in the side of the face. “Oh it is the wannabe princess.” The undead pegasuses have been surprised by the cloud eels and lightning and are screaming.

Egg White is attacking the undead unicorn/earth ponies in different areas of the Maze… and then there is ptttf and bones fly up. Another cork flies at the lich and hits her shoulder, Borealis shoots at her the same time as Aurora an she flinches as they fly by and explode a tree behind her.

HurryUp is sneakying up behind the skeletal pony in readiness to rob her. She remembers that in the Nightmare that when she was dancing, she noticed a book with Joneigh. “How come I didn’t notice the title of that before: How to use Periapts?”

Jimmy, Autumn G and her sisters are setting up boulders for him to buck at the undead ponies. One hits the thing trying to attack Prow Lee and Zero Fail… boooosh. The skeletal pony is getting angry and a wall of energy roils out from her… it is drying out the mud of the swamp and the corn maze. Autumn tries to make a crack or pit, but misses her and a few cracks show up in the ground around her. Sunny takes aim and fires a Fireball over the corn, under the cloud cover at the Lich (skeletal pony). “It’s just chaff charge through it.” The fireball, lightning and Aura’s levitated cork all fly at the Lich at once and all hit her as another cork flies by from Hob and a Borealis blast misses her. Aurora realizes that Hob’s cork and Borealis’ blast should have hit, but something deflects it. HurryUp notices when the lich is lit up by the lightning & fireball that inside her goo sees a crescent moon, a drain cover, a bucket of water and a glittering spear floating about inside her.

A note appears on Sunny’s nose “More fire, I am running out of popcorn.”

HurryUp is trying to pickpocket ALL peripapts. Sunny is shooting again, Jimmy & Autumn are bucking boulders, Joneigh is sending rain, Aurora is telekenisising the cork to stay on the lich’s horn, Hob shoots another cork and there is a sweep of energy at fetlock level. All of it hits her as the shield goes out of control and spins about her. Suddendly HurryUp is staggering and a golden unicorn horn grew instantly from her forehead, Then wings spring forth from her in black feathers and she hears three voices in her head all telling her what she can do now. HurryUp says “Shut up, you’re not the voice of me!”

“That is a little loud, ice it down,” says Aurora.

Wings flap and HurryUp rises up in the air. She is arguing with the voices in her head. New voice in her head is agreeing with the other not being the boss of her and says “Tell me what you want.” A beam of golden sunlight flows from the golden horn around the boulder to the Lich. “What I want is complete control of myself.” Then the horn and the wings fall off and something falls out of her and now she is falling because Gravity.

Aurora tries to catch them all up on a big tele-ball. Joneigh dive-bombs down to catch HurryUp. Borealis and Sunny both try to catch HurryUp or the stuff. As well, Aurora caught the three items. Now she is glowing really, really, REALLY bright. Her horn has golden trim wrapped around it. Wings spring from her back and now she has 4 voices speaking to her in her head. She seems to be cackeling. Two of the voices sound familar to her… like Celestia and HurryUp, the others don’t sound familiar. “Somebody is bossing YOU around!?!” [In HurryUp’s voice.] The others pop up – storm voice, Celestia voice, and then “So, what do you want.” voice. More arguing, with Aurora wants them to go away and not bother any other pony.

The Lich rises up from the ground, the corks are off her horn. “I can’t believe you are all still alive.” “I stole your stuff! And you didn’t even try to stop me.” Then she ninja vanishes as Lich tries to shoot her with eldritch energy. The wings have lifted Aurora of their own accord. Borealis has sent a tele-lasso to grab Aurora’s leg. “Don’t. Even you can’t handle this, it is too dangerous.” HurryUp’s voice says “Are you sure you want to tell Borealis it is TOO dangerous for him??”

Joneigh feels someone trying to pull control of the storm from she & her 3 friends, she fights back and makes the storm stronger.

Borealis hears someone yelling at him to fight the lich, someone else to protect his sister. “Leave my sister alone!” Aurora feels like she has been surrounded by a Borealis hug.

Hob is tying again to take out the Lich and re-corks her.

Aurora wants to go to the center of the Maze, and the wings say “Where shall we go?” So, she tele-lassos a boulder or stalk of corn to pull herself to the middle of the Maze. The HurryUp voice says “You know he has never hugged me this platonically before.” Celestia voice “Ah ha, good thinking!” Wings say “Zero Fail is here? He is still alive?” The male voice says “You can take control of where everything belongs.”

Aurora asks, “Where do they belong.”

“I belong in Hayseed Swamps, SHE (pegasus voice) belongs in the Salt Flats and SHE (unicorn voice) belongs back in the Pit and HurryUp belongs in all of us.”

“Fuuuuuuuuck”

Prow Lee and Zero Fail are still arguing if they got all the zomponies. Shucks drops down and says you got them all now go out there and points to the edges.

Aurora lands and asks Prow Lee how to pull something out of the Big Empty. In unison, Prow Lee and the male voice say at the same time, “You just ask the Big Empty.” Male voice says “I’m right here.” Zero Fail says “Picture it. Picture it and make it real.”

Something blobby hits the Lich in the face, a cornstock hits her in the fetlock and the earth ponies run her over.

HurryUp pickpockets the last of the periapts our of the her… and embraces it. She gets ghostly bat wings, a ghostly horn appears and she is covered in ghostly armor.. and she cackles just like the Mare in the Moon.

Prow Lee does this weird shudder and transforms into the Dark Stallion. “Push them out, you are you, Push Them OUT.” “You can do it you can do it!” says Borealis from around her. Suddenly three things fly out of Aurora and the Dark Stallion makes a grab for them… but misses. Two go into Shucks and one into Borealis. Shucks gets the golden horn and the wings, but isn’t cackling. “Well that is interesting.”

Dark Stallion says “WHAT!” A ghostly horn and wings appear on Borealis. “Well it has been a while since I had this many ponies inside me,” he says.

The Mare in the Moon’s voice in HurryUp’s head says you have to imprison her first – the unicorn horn from your friend Shuck’s head.” “No, I like her.” “I wanna go over there.” POP, and she is right next to the Dark Stallion. “I didn’t think armor was your thing, but now… hmm, how does it feel?”

HurryUp is trying to talk the Dark Stallion, flirting a bit, but letting him know she wants to do it only if it is HER decison, this voice in her head. Shucks and Borealis are talking back to the voices in her head. Dark Stallion looks to Zero Fail says “Tell him I’m sorry, I will stay in better contact and that he needs to help you protect them with the next step.” He looks to HurryUp and says “I know you will do the right thing, which isn’t the thing I would do.”

Zero Fail says to Autumn “Are you sure he signed the Pre-Nup?” “Yes!”

The Dark Stallion leaves Prow Lee, who cusses a bit and then Zero Fail tells him what DS said. “Wait right thing, oh. Who has the Sun Sphere (they point at Shucks) and hello third boss.” Prow Lee says to the Mare in the Moon “Will you cooperate with your host and take us there?” “We do need to put the Sun Sphere back where it belongs.” HurryUp lets the group know what was said and asks Prow Lee if that is what he meant. “Yes”. Zero Fail, Prow Lee, Shucks and HurryUp all vanish. “What? Of course I want to go.” then another POP and Borealis disappears. Joneigh dissapates the storm and lands by Autumn. She catches her up.

The possessed pop into an area surrounded by magma. Around the pool of magma there are other shelves and some have sculptures setting upon them. The next shelf over from where they are is a thing like a shiney metal sword, or maybe the magma light is making it shimmer or maybe it isn’t solid. On the other side is a stange collection of weird bits of different things and a wooden bead and a couple more changing things.

Zero Fail says “We have to figure out how to get the Sun Sphere out of Shucks.” “Raven Storm stole the Sun Sphere from right here.” “It goes right here, it is part of what chained the Oblivian.” The magma says “I am right here” in a voice like earthquakes. “He’s insane,” says the Mare in the Moon.

Shucks says one of his voices says the others need to go where they belong too, including the one in HurryUp. Borealis pops in about then and the voice inside him agrees. “Okie dokie” and Shucks pulls something out of his head and plants it in the shelf they are on. The magma grumbles. HurryUp looks to the right and POP disappears. “What, where did it go?” as HurryUp pops onto another shelf. Borealis pops in too, “There is supposed to be a dagger here, the voice said.” “Can you hold me? I didn’t pop over here,” says HurryUp. “Oh, well ok.” Zero Fail and Shucks grab Prow Lee and fly to the shelf too. “Why’d you go over here.” The Night Dagger has disappeared.”

HurryUp asks if any others are missing…. and Prow Lee pulls out his binoculars and looks about. Just the Dagger is missing. They agree that the other bits need to go where they belong now. POP.

HurryUp and Borealis are in a swamp, there is a pond over there and they can hear the ocean nearby, so Salt Marsh. Borealis sighs and motions that the voice in him is chattering. “The Open Drain needs to be put back to hold back the Deluge,” says the voice in HurryUp’s head. The water about them says she needs to be allowed to join the ocean. HurryUp uses furrycuffs to connect the two and now Borealis is arguing with the voice in his head. “Do we need the lock box?” “No.” More arguing in Borealis’ head. Then he coughs up a drain cover that bounces across the surface of the pond and then lands in the center. The water says “Nooo no nooooo.”

Pop and they are on the moon. “What are you….” says Nightmare Moon. “Where did you get that token?” “I stole it from a Lich.” “Well this is a very interesting development.”

Back in Brindlebury, Prow Lee and Shucks and Zero Fail pop near the group. “We were in the Pit! It is really hot and the voices in my head told me it could burn me.” He tells about the Spere was put back and the Night Dagger is gone. He also says the voice says that the Mare in the Moon took HurryUp to where to get rid of the Big Empty’s token.

Aurora tells where the others were to go, but didn’t know where the Blue Moon should go. Prow Lee tells them. “So with what Shucks said, where is the worst place they could go?” “The Moon.” “I could call her, you know just call her.” They want to save their friend.

On the Moon… a little bell is ringing. “Yes, Ms. Kimblewick?” “There have been some problems here.” “Yes, I know. Unfortunately my sister won. Oh you aren’t in Canterlot, so you don’t know.” Aura asks if her friends have shown up, and could she please send them back. “Of course” She hangs up and goes back to HurryUp and Borealis. She says she can show them the door, but they need to open it to use and hurry before the Dawn comes.

HurryUp opens the doorway and peers through and gets told to get over here, so she jumps through pulling Borealis with her. When the door closes behind her, the Mare in the Moon in her head poofs out cause it can’t leave the moon.

Autumn says they need to sleep and do whatever else later.

Shucks has a headache and wants the voice out “pull the wings off!” Autumn does so and she holding a crystal representation of a storm surge and she has to fight it. Prow Lee imagines a lockbox into existence, then bats the Storm Surge it into the box. “You should have asked a professional to do it.”

The Mare in the Moon calls Aura and asks if her friends got there and when she says yes, she suggests she read the Canterlot Daily.

View
Who is that Mare behind the Curtain

May 4, 2019
Part of the group is in Autumn’s backyard and the other part is in Moist Eyesocket.

In Brindlebury: Prow Lee stomps over for more marshmallows, there is a note on his back that says ‘Don’t tell Prow Lee about the organ.’ Bone snags it and asks ‘What organ?’ and hands it to Joneigh, who nods.

In Moist Eyesockets a note appears wrapped about Sunny’s mimosa… it is sheet music entitled “Unchained Oblivion.” Sunny asks Maize about it. There is also a note on a cocktail napkin ‘Don’t tell Joneigh you have this.’ Sunny mumbles that she doesn’t like to keep things from his friends. ‘You assume they are your friends.’ She crumples the note and tosses it in a corner.

Back in Brindlbury, Prow Lee asks (after hearing Bone’s question about the note) if there is an organ in a haunted house here? When one of the pony’s asks doesn’t every town have one, ZeroFail observes, “The good ones do!” Prow Lee goes on about his trap and how Joneigh has really bad folk coming for her. His trap won’t slow them down much. Zero Fail explains about the zomponies and water… and bath water of Alicorns being a strong solvent. Bone asks about zomponies. Prow Lee says that they are looking for Joneigh specifically… an assistant libriarian with the Windsmouth look. “Oh.” Zero Fail suggests that they are looking for the books they are now carrying. He asks if she has any other book that the bad ponies might be after. “Oh no, my books are just research books.”

Shucks, Bone & Joneigh are going off to warn the McCorn cousins that bad ponies may be coming to Brindlebury after the group, etc. Egg White will take Zero Fail & Prow Lee to tell the constable and show them the pit, or whatever they want to see. The former run into HurryUp’s mom. She asks Joneigh about her trip to Canterlot. “It was scenic. How have you been?” She says it has been quiet, HurryUp left then a bunch of the cousins also left (Grass brothers, Hayseed brothers, etc). So, they warn her and follow Shucks to his cousins’ farm. Shucks warns Mrs. Wately and Bone asks if Joneigh has read anything about any zompony infestations. She says yes, while researching in Canterlot.

Once they have notified everyone, they regroup to see if Prow Lee or Zero Fail know a way to get the ‘band back together’. Joneigh pulls out her calling card and chatted with Autumn about wanting to join them. Prow Lee steps into Joneigh’s line of sight and holds up one finger. Joneigh pauses the call and asks “Yesss?” “Are they in Moist Eyesocke?” “yes, for breakfast” “we can be there in eight hours”, Jonigh relays that… and Aura asks whose voice that was… Joneigh says that should be a surprise.

Prow Lee pulls out a obsidian key with a skull on it and a vrooming noise is heard and a black stretch stagecoach zooms up. Prow Lee opens a rear door “Ladies…”. The group gets in, Prow Lee settles in the front, puts the key in … something… and they go off quite fast. Zero Fail pulls out a picnic basket and tea kettle from a satchel and stuff floats about him as he makes tea. “Oh good, I think tea is a good idea.”

The scenery is going by REALLY fast. Some swerves cause loud screams from outside the coach. Prow Lee seems to be enjoying the havoc his ride is causing.

Back at Moist Eyesocket Autumn tells the group that the rest of their party is heading this way. The door to the market and at the same time the front door to the bar open. A liveried pegasus comes in the front door, a goat fairy dressed similarly flitters in from the Market. They both say “Delivery for Ms. Green, sign here please.” Maise opens the envelopes as the delivery folk await answers. She starts laughing and laughing.

Jimmy asks, “What is it Maisey?”

Maize answers, “Job offers.” She tells the pegasus “Tell them I don’t do that anymore.” “Write it here, please,” and flies off. She tells the fairy “Tell them they are on thier own.” “Write it here, please,” and flies back to the market.

She goes back to making the next round of drinks. “Oh, I should have reminded them that the bar is neutral territory.” “Why would they need to be reminded?” “I meant those who sent the messages, not the messengers.”

“How long are you all planning on staying? A room was metioned?” Flame answers that they are expecting friends, and were there rooms here? “Yes, there are rooms upstairs.” “Do you mean Grass & McCorns? They should take 5-6 days to get here.” “No, it sounds like Joneigh has others with her that will be a surprise.” Autumn asks about other inns or rooms. Maize explains, but Autumn would rather stay above the bar.

Maize leans close to Sunny “Of course, I have keys to all the rooms.”

Aurora orders a room for herself. Autumn & Flame get a room. Aurora mentions that it is hard to get used to there being more than one of Autumn. Choosey says “Family trait.” Then he asks if it would be ok if he gave Autumn all the birthday gifts he has accumulated over the years, as he is her sort-of-godfather. “How long have you known about us and why did you not say anything? We have been orphans for a long time.” “We didn’t know about their deaths till recently and HE thought we should remain afar.” “Are you the hugging type of pony?” She just nods. Autumn and Flame get a Chewbacca type hug.

Maize reappears with register and says “And he doesn’t seem as intimidating after one of those, does he?”

When Aurora gets to her room there is something on the bed with a ribbon and a card. She reads the card “I hope you enjoy this, signed the Dark Stallion.” Aurora uses a field to open the gift, its and illustrated book! There is a picture of Sunny & Borealis on the cover with strategically placed black bars over things. Wow. She puts it in the nightstand, goes to lock the door, as someone knocks.

Maize is outside with a tray and a drink. “Nightcap?”

Aurora takes the tray with a field and then locks the door and goes to take a nap. She dreams about having wings. Meanwhile, Autumn makes notes before going to sleep, but Flame goes right to sleep.

In the magic stagecoach, a cup of tea floats to Joneigh, and a jar of sugar cubes floats out of the picnic basket. ZeroFail askes, “Sugar?” “No, but a dollop of cream please.” Thermos of cold cream floats over and pours itself. Bone has a bit of both. The coach has taken to the train tracks, when it comes to a train it sort of flies over it.

Bone & Joneigh smell smoke and they look to see Prow Lee is smoking something that looks like a joint… it is catnap. Zero Fail opens a window and says to Prow Lee “Should you really be doing that while you’re driving!?” “Best time.”

Back in Rotten Hoof HurryUp gets a room and takes a nap, she drinks the nightcap, as does Jimmy in his room. They both have an extremely sound sleep. The others, who didn’t drink the nightcap, wake to odd sounds outside. It is a strangely shapped zeppelin, in the cockpit are Choosey, Grand and Aurora’s Great-great Uncle.

A while later there is a weird roaring and when they all look out, there is a long coach pulling up and a strange being steps out – looks like a cat walking upright. Then the rest of their group, with a pegasus they don’t recognize pile out of the vehicle. Aurora heads downstairs. Joneigh & Bone come inside and Joneigh is surprised how cold it is inside, delighted, but surprised. The bartender asks what they will have. “Nice to see you, Aurora.” She is glad to see Joneigh as well, inquires after her conveyence. Prow Lee follows them inside and Aurora asks if he is the surprise. Joneigh explains that she didn’t think it was her place to announce them ahead of time. He accepts a drink. They introduce themselves. “Is Prow Lee your real name?” “Yes, it is his real name,” the pegasus says.

Prow Lee explains that “Evil ponies including several with moth wings, others in service to the forces of darkness, came over your friend and destroy ZeroFail’s bookshop in the process."

ZeroFail notes, “Thanks to Mr McKorn here, most of the books were saved.”

“Maizey!,” squeals Shucks.

Joneigh greets Autumn and thanks her for the loan of Bone”. The sisters all touch forehads. Maize brings drinks. “I have a suspicion that there will be a three-sister booth opening up soon.”

Joneigh and Bone and Shucks try to tell them their adventures. Aurora asks Prow Lee how they got there so fast. The whole party that has just arrived turn as one and point at the magical mystery coach. Aurora goes out and tries to cast spells and do some magical testing at it. Prow Lee comes out to where she is doing this. When Prow Lee walks up, he has the same brash/stealthy aura as the coach. “Tell me all about it!!” Aura glees at Prow Lee. “Three thousand years, one owner.”

“How many miles, three thousand years, what?”

Prowl Lee thinks for a moment, then answers, “48,536,022”.

“How does it work?” “You aim it where you want to go and you step on the accelerator and steer with that wheel thingie.”

“Where did you get it?”

“I visualized it out of the Big Empty.”

Aurora indicates that she doesn’t understand what he is talking about, and why he seems to think that everyone will understand him.

Prowl Lee expresses surprise that an inhabitant of Brindlebury doesn’t know about the Oblivion and other cosmic being. They discuss the pit and that she hadn’t been to the bottom. Aurora hazards a guess that the by the Empty Prowl Lee is referring to the realm of the Dark Stallion.

“The Empty was the domain of the Oblivion, not the Dark Stallion. The Dark Stallion’s domain is the Chaos.”

They speak about the Deathless and how much of this did Aurora knows. Aurora recites the standard history about the regal sisters who brought harmony to the land, but how the younger sister became angry that nopony wanted to be active during the night, her realm, and how she refused to let dawn occur until Celestia was forced to banish her sister to the moon.

Then Prow Lee explains how it really happened. “The Solar Queen and the Lunar Queen were each, secretly, having an affair with the King of Shadows, who was promising each of them that they would rule over Equestria together. When the sisters finally discovered his two-timing, they ganged up on him to bind him the way other Deathless had been bound. Then, still angry at her sister, Celestia turned on the Lunar Queen in a jealous rage and bound her.”

Aurora has to stop and think about this. Prow Lee suggests that Aurora check with Joneigh about this… she has a board with yarn and stuff and can really explain it.

“Ok, lets go talk to her… but… ride later?”

Aurora goes to Joneigh and asks, “Show me this board, tell me about these people!”

They decide to go to Aurora’s room to set up the board and Joneigh schools them all in the Deathless. She specifically mentions that the Earthbreaker has been pretending to be an ordinary Earth Pony here in Rotten Hoff, along with his friend, the manticore Choosey.

“Oh Choosey the greatest copilot in Equestria.” say Prowl Lee. At the same time ZeroFail said, “Formerly known as General ChosenVelvet.” Then both finish, “Once in service to another of the Deathless, just like us.”

Autumn & Flame say “He gives really good hugs.”

Joneigh, Shucks, and Prowl Lee explain about the library and the attack on the Librarian. “Besides she can’t die…won’t die!” says Prowl Lee.

ZeroFail elaborates: “It is possible that she vowed, unwittingly in the presence of a very powerful magical artifact, that she would stay on until she got all the overdue books back. Which is partly why I won’t take them back.”

There is some discussion about books that shouldn’t be read. Joneigh says “Like the one we found THAT SHOULD NOT BE READ.”

Autumn asks about the book that was opened then relocked and like that. “Yes, we didn’t open it, we aren’t that stupid.”

“That is why I trust her with half these books.” says ZeroFail in a quiet aside to Prowl Lee.

Joneigh looks flustered and then smiles hugely.

Prowl Lee reacts to a comment one of the others makes about the Dark Stallion. Joneigh says that we have had lots of communication with the Dark Stallion. HurryUp says she can hook Prow Lee up with his boss. There are a flurry of sticky notes after that. One that most everyone sees says, “Until you hookup with, you can’t hook anyone else up with me.” HurryUp has suddenly gone quiet and thoughtful “Hmmm. Hmm. Mhm.”

ZeroFail, trying to get the conversation back to something useful, says, “Some agents of the Deathless are after your friend Joneigh, but we’re not entirely sure which of several reasons is why they want her.”

“I thought you still worked for one of them?”

ZeroFail explains, “I am still loyal to my Queen, but she has been in hiding for fourteen hundred years, and I haven’t heard from her for quite some time.”

A note appears on Aurora’s horn from the Dark Stallion. Aurora growls, “Will you stop that!” There is a knock on the door and there a bunch of penguin servers with food and drink, and an envelope addressed to Aurora. Inside is a note which says, “Is this more appropriate?”

There is more banter about communication. Then a mariachi band (of penguins) magically appears in the corner. The singer’s lyrics seem to be answering some of Aurora’s comments to the Dark Stallion. “Now what? Singing is better??” Aurora is frustrated by this way of communication and almost dares the Dark Stallion to appear. The others warn that this is a bad idea, do – notinvite – him – here!

And there is another knock at the door… telegram for the whole group. “You are sitting at the nexus of 6 very powerful artifacts that many evil ponies are trying to obtain. One of those evil ponies wants to kill Joneigh, for reasons. I think you should be focusing on that and not my methods of communication.”

Aurora looks out the window for assassins. Joneigh has gone quiet and is lurking behind HurryUp. “And the evil one has zomponies.” Autumn asks, “Who is trying to kill Joneigh?”

Prow Lee explains, “There is an evil unicorn mage who figured out how to bring herself back after she died.”

ZeroFail interjects, “At different times she has been aligned with agents of the Lunar Queen, the Oblivion, or the King of Shadows.”

Prowl Lee continues, “She is currently working with several Windsmouth ponies who are in a faction aligned against the Solar Queen. Those are the moth-winged pegasus ponies who attacked the bookshop.”

Several members of the party asked, “Why does she want to kill Joneigh?”

“I’m not sure,” Prowl Lee says. “I intercepted some of their coded messages, but I don’t read minds. The most likely reasons are because of her connections with and knowledge of some of the previous mystical happenings at Windsmouth and Smoky Mountain. Or because of knowledge she has obtained from books she claims are just research. Or because of her specific bloodline and a prophecy about how it is tied to the release of the chained oblivion—”

ZeroFail interjects, “Or it is also possible the Undying Mage doesn’t want to kill her, she just wants to access a mind that has read all of the forbidden books.”

Autumn comments, “That doesn’t sound any better.”

Prowl Lee looks suspiciously at ZeroFail, “Are you thinking of sacrificing yourself, since you have read all of the forbidden books, as well?”

ZeroFail tries to look shocked at the suggestion, and totally fails.

Autumn asked, “But you are going to help keep her safe?"

Prow Lee says “That’s why I have been intervening!”

Bone asked, “Are you actually helping, or is the real reason you’re doing it that helping her thwarts them?”

“Well that’s a bonus!” He explains that if the evil ponies kill Joneigh or get possession of the forbidden books, then some other really bad things would happen to Equestria as a whole. “And I like a world where you ponies keep inventing wonderful things, such as interesting beverages and good music and so on.”

Aurora asked, “So you are really that old?”

ZeroFail says “yes, we really are that old, and so is that manticore you were talking about earlier.”

Aurora gets up in ZeroFail’s face, looking closely at his eyes and skin and the feathers on his wings, trying to find signs of his advanced age.

Autumn mutters to Aurora about this is one of those times you are being rude without knowing … now is it.

Zero Fail repeats “They may not want her dead, but may just want someone who has had access to all the books.”

Autumn asks if the Undying Mage is one of the deathless.

“No,” ZeroFail explains.

Prowl Lee adds, “The Undying Mage is not a Deathless, yet.”

There is talk about him and the zomponies that attacked the bookstore and the office.

“It is just somebody bad. There is always somebody bad.” sighs Joneigh.

There are no assassins comig up the road. It is suggested that they warn Maize about what may be after them. The group discusses plans and where to go next… to remain safe.

HurryUp mutters “I wonder how I could become a Deathless.” A note appears on her muzzle. “Oh baby let me show you the ways.” “Now I know what our talk will be about!”

There is more discussion about where to go, how to get the drop on those that are coming after Joneigh, or what to do next. Bone looks at Zero Fail and Joneigh and suggests that they are the most likely targets, perhaps they should decide where they should go. More ambiguous discussion. Suggestions of which terrain would be better for traps and battle. If Prow Lee would be willing to take ALL of them back to Brindlebury.

The big coach starts braking several miles outside of town and does the 180 right handed drift to stop just in front of Garnish Towers. There are bonfires in the town square and there are two zompony bodies in the flames. Most of the townfolk are there celebratig the battle. One apologizes to Autumn for her garden. She says that as long as Moonbeam is ok, her garden can be regrown.

Several of the bad ponies that showed up were wonded but have left. Pegasuses with weird wings and that ugly peg-legged unicorn missing an eye was run out of town.

Prow Lee sidles up to Joneigh and asks if they are setting up the trap in the swamp or in the haunted house with the haunted organ.

Joneigh asks among her friends (careful to make sure that Prowl Lee and ZeroFail don’t hear) whether they should inform Celestia of the problem. Aurora volunteers to send a note to update Celestia and let her know what may happen in Brindlebury.

Jimmy was gonna go all A-Team on them once the trap was tripped. Then there is discussion about what kind of traps to be set; Jimmy & HurryUp team up for this. She starts rummaging in her tail and Jimmy digs through his toolchest. She comes up with Celestia’s Bath Water in a seltzer bottle.

Autumn goes through her bag for metal objects.

Almost immediately after she sends a message to Celestia, Aurora gets an answer back… a scroll and a small bottle that says ‘Drink me’, the scroll (which has Celestia’s seal) says “We need to talk.” Aurora drinks the potion and immediately falls unconscious.

Hobb finds her “Aurora, Aurora wake up, what’s wrong with you?” He finds the scroll and bottle.

Sunny hears Hobb’s distress and comes hurrying into the room, too, with Borealis following. Aurora is breathing, but both her heart rate and breathing are very shallow. Sunny tries various magics to heal or awaken Aurora to no avail.

Aurora, meanwhile finds herself in a room in what she assumes is in the castle, at Canterlot. Aurora know she is in a dream, and she can see the Princess’s silhouette is on a curtain in front of a balcony.

Aurora has a discussion with the princess, who quickly reveals herself to be the Mare in the Moon, and not Celestia. The Mare in the Moon (or the Lunar Queen) explains that Celestia actually wants the evil ponies to succeed in their quest against Joneigh, and that if Aurora wants to protect her friend, she will have to go against the plans of Celestia.

Aurora is very skeptical, and askes the Lunar Queen to offer proof. The Lunar Queen shows Aurora a vision of Celestia talking to her secretary, speaking of Aurora as nothing more than a potential brood mare for bloodlines that she wishes to preserve. The Celestia in the vision also talks about taking care of the problem of Joneigh (without being very specific about what the problem is), but also insisting that the Mares In Black must figure how Joneigh has eluded Celestia’s scrying. There is also a reference to not needing to “eliminate” some problem ponies because their brains have already been extracted.

Aurora knows this vision may be an illusion, but tries to remember subtle details she may be able to verify later. She challenges the Lunar Queen about why she should be believed, so the Lunar Queen explains that the Oblivion didn’t just become addicted to consuming the souls of mortal ponies, he also figured out how to consume other Deathless. “There used to be thirteen Deathless, but Destiny was killed and eaten by the Oblivion, which is why Fate needs so much help.” She claimed that Celestia has become arrogant and delusional after eight centuries without peers to interact with, and falsely believe she can control the Oblivion if the Undying Mage unbinds him. “She intends to kill all of us, and permanently assume our powers,” she says.

Aurora is still skeptical, and suggest three things that might bring her to believe the Lunar Queen. “Tell me the names of the forbidden books that the Undying Mage wants to take from my friend. Tell me the name of a pony I have not yet met but will. And give me the means to contact you again when I need to.”

The Lunar Queen lists off the books: “Deathless Mysteries, Tales from Drowned Wood, The Infernal Manuscript, Anatomy of Rock, The Encyclopedia of Nothing, History of Storm, and Where the Death Less Are,” Then she says, “A pony you have not met but will soon is RavenShadow.”

Aurora asks, “And how do I contact you?”

The Mare in the Moon smirks, and a beam of black energy shoots from her horn to engulf Aurora’s. And a spell for Communing with the Mare of Night is emblazoned on Aurora’s brain.

Before Aurora can react, she hears a sound like a large piece of fabric being torn. She turns to look, and sees a silvery rip in the fabric of reality itself. The rip widens into a large glowing gap, and a bean of white unicorn magic shoots out of the gap and hits the Mare in the Moon, knocking her away from Aurora. Egg White comes through the gap, his magic countering the dark blast so magic that the Lunar Queen sends at him.

“Mortal fool!” the Lunar Queen snarls, “How dare you challenge me!”

Egg White charges into the room, blasts of magic from his horn countering the Lunar Queen’s attacks and striking at her. “I’m just here for my friend,” he says. As soon as he is between Aurora and the Lunar Queen, he kicks with one hind leg, shoving Aurora through the rift.

Aurora wakes and Hobb is there, so is Sunny and Borealis all gathered around her looking concerned. She sees that Egg White is behind them, laying unconscious on the floor. Auroraa says “Get off, help him! He was there!”

She hurries to Egg White’s side. The other three explain (talking over each other) how Sunny’s healing magic didn’t seem to be helping Aurora, then Egg White arrive and he surrounded her body in his magic, and Sunny could see that it was helping her body, but none of them realized that Eqq White had collapsed, because his magic continued to surround her. Aurora realizes that she is still engulfed in a white magical glow coming from Egg White’s horn.

Egg White;s eyes flutter. He wakes and says “Oh! Are you all right?”

Aurora asks, “Are you all right?”

“I came in and realized that the Nightmare in the Moon had you, so I just had to help.” he explained.

“How did you know how to do that?”

Egg White climbed to his hooves then tilted his head as he looked at her. “They hide that information in books.”

Aurora replies, “I read books!”

“Not the right kind, I think,” Egg White replies.

Aurora realizes she may have to read some different books.


Notes:

Some questions I noticed in the chat that happened while I was away.

Maize The name that the pony known as Maize was given by her parents was MaizeGreen McKorn. She is the eldest child of the older brother of Jimmy’s father. So she is a cousin to Jimmy, Shucks, and a bunch of other McKorns that the player ponies know. She is a few years older than Jimmy and Shucks. She was a teenager when they were small foals who needed babysitting, and yes, she babysat them frequently. She left Neighbraska shortly after finishing the schooling available at the village school, having signed some kind of job in the military, but the family lost contact with her shortly thereafter.

For a number of years she worked as a freelance troubleshooter/assassin, going by the name of SlaysClean. It was during this stage that she and Borealis were lovers, and also that she defeated (and nearly killed) Sunny when Sunny’s platoon tried to capture her.

Since retiring, she has taken on the identity of Maize E. Green, and is currently the Sheriff of Rotten Hoof, Neighvada, as well as being employed as a bartender in the same community.

While there are warrants out for the arrest of the notorious assassin Slay Clean, so far as the players know, they are the only ponies who realize that Slays Clean is the same pony as MaizeGreen McKorn and Maize E Green.

Bait’s Inn because the players have suggested it, there is a pop-up porn book about this inn in the town of Rotten Hoff. The gamemaster suspects this book was produced before old Mrs. Bait’s died and her psychopathic son started murdering ponies.

McKorns Jimmy and Shucks are just two of a large collection of cousins who moved to Brindlebury after their Great-Uncle Grits had purchased a number of farms by paying years of back-taxes when the owners and all heirs had died out. Jimmy, Shucks, Creamed, Waks, Muffin, Canned E. and Kettle McKorn have lived in Brindlebury for many years, but are not natives. They have significantly revitalized the agricultural output of Brindlebury over the last decade. Subsequently, Shuck’s younger sisters (who are twins) Summer and Autumn McKorn had taken over the beauty salon after the previous owner passed away. Great-Uncle Grits, a semi-retired barrister, lives in the seventh of the abandoned farms, which the McKorn cousins cultivate along with their own (which are all technically owned by the Great-uncle, though his living trust leaves each of them as heirs).

There are a lot of other McKorns, some owning or running farms back in Neighbraska. Jimmy’s evil twin, Cornsilk, used to be an agent of the Mares In Black, but has been ordered (by Princess Celestia) to help on his parents’ farm until his mother, Candy McKorn, says that he has mad amends.

Borealis and Sunny Book an illustrated book of the “Tijuana Wank Book” style was released by the Bargain Fairy after a night in the Bargain Basement. Because of the fairy magic, the book was available in every sex and porn shop throughout Equestria the day before it was actually created, so it’s all over.

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Deathless Defined
Guess who's your daddy!

Apr 6, 2019
Joneigh, Bone, Zero Fail and Prow Lee are watching the storm upon the bookstore. A flaming pony spins up and out of the store. Bone says, “It is a pegasus, not the right color for Shucks anyway.” Joneigh says, “Oh, that is Noctilucent Moonchaser! What is he doing here, with them?” “Apparantly, nothing good” says Bones.

Another pony comes flying out of the maelstorm, it looks like Altostratus Penniform… watching him get zapped off course and then he’s bounced around and is captured. Then she sees Shucks with a rope in his mouth, the other end is a lasso around another pegasus, who collides with another pegasus with a boom! “That is Nimbus and Nacreous Penniform there!” The vortex is getting worse, and it is shrinking in on the bookstore and then there is a slurping/sucking noise and the bookstore is gone without damaging the other buildings.

“What are y’all looking at?” Shucks has appeared in the circle with a bunch of bookcases strapped to his back, he looks a little wobbly. Joneigh runs over and hugs him.

Bone wonders if the palace guard would want to know why Zero Fail attracted that kind of attack and if they would know if Zero Fail knows Prow Lee… and would they come looking for them here? Prow Lee suggests they should relocate. “What about the books, there are some that shouldn’t be left laying around.” says Zero Fail. Joneigh is browsing the bookshelves. Prow Lee goes to the other room, pulls back a portrait of the Queen of Abyssinia, opens the safe and with tongs and big rubber gloves pulls out a thermos. Sets the jar down and closes the safe, resets the portrait. He uses a bucket and two sets of tongs to set a bucket on the door trap. Bone asks what it is and what kind of thing it is for… Prow Lee says it will only work once on things from the beyond. Joneigh is looking at books and then stops and stares, then reaches for a book that was on the WAY overdue books… at the same time Zero Fail reaches for it. “Yes, that is one of the books that shouldn’t be left laying around.” Joneigh lets him take it, but offers to carry it if he has no way to transport as she has room in her saddlebags. He hands that one and two more, “I forgot, some of these books shouldn’t be stored together, you take these.”

Prow Lee, responding to noises outside, says “We should leave now now now. Go through that door and on toward the mirror.” Joneigh grabs Bone & Shucks and heads into the storage room and stops before the mirror. Behind them there is an “Ah ha!” then a splash, and then a scream and “I’m melting melting!”

Prow Lee looks at his reflection in the mirror, “The password is Swordfish”. It opens up and they go through and down the stairs they go. Prow Lee, at the rear, says “Lock it up!” and behind them is now just a blank wall. Zero Fail complains that the stairs are difficult. Prow Lee says they are much better than dealing with the things they left behind. Bone asks what that might be. “Ponies you never want to meet.”

The stairs lead to a cavern with a stream and a boat. They take the boat through tunnels. Prow Lee asks Zero Fail, “Now that we have put the guards and THEM behind us, can you tell me why you brought a Windsmouth Pony and Earthbraker’s Daughter through my magic circle?” “What no comment about one of the McCorns from Neighbraska as well?” “Stick to the mystical ones?” “They came to my shop and at first I thought they were after me, but then THEY were after them… so they must be good guys.” Bone asks “Who is Earthbraker’s Daughter?” Prow Lee asks “She doesn’t know?” Bone looks at Joneigh and they discuss a bit of what Autumn doesn’t know yet. Bone asks Shucks if maybe she should go back to Autumn & Flame. “is it safe here?” she asks of Prow Lee. “Of course!” Zero Fail says, But Prow Lee disagrees, “No where is safe.”

“Why were agents of the Mare in the Moon after you?” There is argument about which THEM everyone is referring, too. Then Bone makes a comment about the Dark Stallion and how he is always pestering her friend HurryUp. “What!?!?” they say in unison. Then Joneigh flicks open her bag and her conspiracy board unfolds and she points to various bits and says “See?”. Then she flicks it back. A single card flutters down to the bottom of the boat from the disappearing board. They all look at it. Zero Fail puts on his glasses and reads ‘The Dark Stallion’. Prow Lee picks it up and exclaims, “Two thousand years I have been waiting for instructions!” and tears it into a bazilliion pieces. And now there are a bazillion cards on the bottom of the boat.

At the Bargain Basement in the Black Market.. there will be a porn book of Borealis & Sunny on sale in the market in the next few days. Sunny later plays chess with the Fairy. The first time she tries to move one of her knights in the usual manner, the Bargain Fairy has a hissy fit, explaining that Knights DO NOT move like that, they are all two-faced back-stabbbing bastards. Eventually Sunny deduces that so long as she says, “Another two-faced bastard backstabbing someone!” she can move the knight in any way at all up to four spaces while the Bargain Fairy cheers.

Autumn finds a snow globe and as she peers in it sees a boat with her friends and a couple strangers in a boat … and they are moving. She tilts it from side to side gently.

Back in the boat – it rocks from side to side – and the others have to stabilize themselves.

Autumn pulls out her trump card and asks if Joneigh is ok. Joneigh pulls her card out and tells her they are all ok and traveling to somewhere safer than we were at previously. Prow Lee points at Joneigh and “kkkttzzzttt”. He asks if she has more than one of Earthbraker’s Daughters in her circle. Joneigh explains that is 3, but really 1, she knows it is but can’t explain why it is. Bone says “I tried to explain, we are all the same.” “Oh no, honey, you aren’t all the same.” And suddenly there is a bitty fairy hovering next to Bone. “But we’ve always been the same.” “You’re sisters, so not the same.” “We share a body.” “Sisters often share.” Joneigh says “What’s that and where’d it come from?” The fairy says “Ahem, SHE!” Zero Fails says “I think it’s the Bargain Fairy from the Bargain Basement.” There is discussion about who owes whom a favor, and the thing that made the boat rock. As Autumn can hear what they are saying, she can now see both the fairy next to her and in the globe and the Fairy says “The Dark Stallion is putting things where they don’t belong again.”

Autumn now notices a symbol on the base of the globe, that we have seen before… on gravestones and the back of our Trump Cards. Autumn mentions to Joneigh that the Dark Stallion may still have a crush on you. A note stuck on the globe “Should I have spoken to your father first before I approached you?” She tears it off, throws it on the ground and stomps on it! “Dad is dead, that was rude!” Another note appears “I’m sorry, Miss Gallery. I meant your birth father, not your father-father.”

Autumn thinks the globe might be a useful tool. They hang up after assuring each other’s groups are safeish and tuck away their cards.

Joneigh looks at Prow Lee cautiously. “Two thousand years I have been waiting for instructions and you have a direct link to my boss?!” “Boss?” He points to Zero Fail and then himself, “We are agents of two of the Deathless, I thought you knew that.” Joneigh says “He was flirting with girls, not too successfully.” The fairy says,”but lots of the Watelys are children of the HIS.” “Yes, but they are OLD.” But a note appears on Prow Lee’s nose “Sorry, you were just soooo boring.” “Boring? BORING?” Zero Fail gently pats his shoulder, “There there.”

Shucks has made friends with an Axolotl from the water. Joneigh says no, thank you… it isn’t dinner time. Put him back. He’s all alone. Shucks, you have taken him from his friends, put him back. Joneigh comforts him… and then looks around and asks Prow Lee is there a waterfall thataway? “Shit, we have to dock and get off the water now!! They row… and Prow Lee says “I think there is an intact teleportation gem that way.” Upstream there are sounds of pursuit. “Get over yourself, we need to get a move on.” Prow Lee recites a rhyme about safe places and Joneigh, Bone, Prow Lee, Shucks, Bargain fairy and Zero Fail appear in Autumn’s back yard in accordance to what Joneigh envisions as “a safe place”. Moonbeam starts and says “I wondered why Kettle McCorn & Blown Grass showed up at my door saying he was here for the party!.” The fairy is already roasting marshmallows over the firepit, “this is nice!” Prow Lee is a little freaked by the amount of children of the Dark Stallion he can detect in the area. Oscar the cat wanders out to sniff out the new folk.

Zero Fail says he now realizes that this group is on the same side as he and Prow Lee. He starts to explain that he was the Captain of the Guard of the Storm Queen. Sometimes loaned out to the Solar Queen. After Deluge was bound by the other Deathless, the Storm Queen realised that the Deathless was looking to do the same to the rest of them and went in hiding. “That is when I became a book store owner.”

Prowl Lee was originally in service to the Oblivion. As such, he took on the guise of an agent of the Mare in the Moon to spy on her, and thus avoided being chained up with the Oblivion’s agents. Then Prow Lee got himself assigned to infiltrate the Dark Stallion’s court, where he was recruited as an agent of Chaos.

Zero Fail finally realizes where they are, that the Oblivion is chained in the pit here. There is discussion about the Dark Stallion’s bastards here and Oblivian and The Dark Stallion are brothers. The Bargain Fairy says that Zero Fail feels morally superior to Prow Lee because he hasn’t changed allegiances. When the Deathless bound the Inferno, the Dark Stallion went into hiding and Prow Lee stopped hearing from him.

At the Black Market, Aurora is exchanging riddles with the Fairy and Jimmy is yodeling for her. We know what Sunny & Borealis are doing. Autumn is having tea with the fairy, just being quiet, in the moment and listening. HurryUp is writing stories for the fairy, and she pre-ordered the Sunny-Borealis book. Flame is dancing for the fairy. It is morning and the curfew is over. Some of the group look more disheveled than others. There is an earthpony waiting at the lobby of Bargain Basement. Grand Meadow says to Autumn “Wow, you turned out nice.” “I haven’t seen a mirror, yet?” Aurora produces one and Autumn looks in it. “Where are your sisters?” says the manticore Choosey. She responds one is here and one is with my friend in Brindlebury. Choosey is looking around like why can’t I see her… and Grand Meadow is like huh. Autumn says, “Look I know I met you once, but you are acting like you know me better than I know I know you.” Grand & Choosey have a manticore-speech convo and Grand say, “Oh, do I really need to say that?” “Ok then, I am the pony that impregnated your mother.” “You prick!” And flame hits him with a gout of flame. Choosey says “you totally had that coming.” More banter ensues. Grand Meadow claims that Autumn, Flame, and Bone had done things that may have got the attention of beings worse than the Dark Stallion or the Three Sisters Scorned, and he feels responsible for their safety. Autumn is no pleased.

They get up to Moist Eyesocket and Maize says ‘Oh, you got out alive.” Jimmy is making breakfast to go with the drinks that Maize brings to their table.

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Bell, Bookshop & Goats, oh my!
There i s much to learn

Mar 2, 2019
At the library in Canterlot, Joneigh is frustrated that many of the books she wants to use have been checked out and are past due… for like DECADES. Many have to do with the Deathless and their history(s). Joneigh asks Celestia about the Deathless. So she reminds the Princess that she is a friend of HurryUp. Celestia glances at the guards and suggests that they go back to the restricted section to speak in a safer area. Her horn glows and the book Joneigh was reading that had a copy of the painting rises up and opens to the picture. She suggests that Joneigh might not want to speak about these things around the wrong sort of people. People like the ones that Aunt Blue warned her about.

The Deathless are Forces of Nature, Celestia is trying to make Equestria a place ponies could live and thrive. At this time there are only four of “us” that are not bound, “Myself, the Dark Stallion, Earthbreaker and Tempest.” The Deathless cannot be destroyed (they tried to destroy the Oblivion – consuming the souls of mortal ponies, I mean… but it isn’t possible). Some of the Bound are less concious than others and each in a different place. Joneigh has already figured out that the Oblivion is at the bottom of the pit in Brindlebury, the Mare in the Moon is in the moon. The unbound are scattered to areas near where other Bounds are; She manages the realm that the oblivion is located.

Joneigh asks what she and her friends should do if they find other groups of ponies that want to unbind the bound. Celestia tells her that is the job of Agent Ayaaaa and others of that organization… that is their job.. to find those who want to free the Bound, but yes there are other groups. She has trusted Joneigh with access and trusts her to make wise decisions with dangerous info. Joneigh asks if Shucks could be a liaison to MiB and Agent Ayaaaaa? “That is an interesting question, I wll check with the director.” Joneigh asks if the Deathless’ names imply the Forces of Nature they have some control over and what are their powers. “My primary is sun & daytime & growing of things; the Mare in the Moon’s is nighttime sleep and dreams; the Dark Stallion is in charge of chaos & serendipity; the Oblivion was in charge of endings; Earthbreaker is the ultimate earth pony, and governs geological forces; Tempest is storms, the ultimate pegasus; Frozen Death managed cold and winter; Deluge was in charge of ocean and all bodies of water; Fallen Comet was about fire and heat – the opposite of Frozen Death; and the Void is tricky, hard to say in mortal words… emptiness and nothing.. but more, that which defines everything by contrast… the unknown and all that is known.”

Joneigh starts murmering about charts and graphs, her eyes glazing over a bit and Celestia says “Good chat, then. Good day.” Joneigh mumbles “Highness…” and wanders back toward her desk. A little while later, Shuck brings some dinner and admonishes her for not haven eaten the last plate he brought. She tells him the plates are too crunchy.

Back in Rotten Hoof, at The Black Market Aurora says “Let’s check this place out!” Autumn asks what they were looking for again? Was it eggs? Jimmy reminds her about the eggs that were making ponies sick. There is discussion about where to go first. HurryUp and Jimmy have gone off ahead, maybe they should catch up? “Cake, pretty unicorn?” Aura declines. HurryUp is trying to find people to tell her about eggs by browsing all the areas.

She enters a shop and notices that prices are things like: The sparkle in your eye, your first spring morning, your best laugh, your last cry and similar things. The items for sale are hats and spatulas and other things that she can’t actually identify. The propieters are a goat, maybe a sheep, and maybe an antelope? They seem to be amazed and thrilled to have a customer. The sheep thing waddles up to HurryUp and asks what she seeks. HurryUp says “Tell me about how the price is exacted.” “Magic is used to remove the price from the customer”, says the goat thing and the antelope thing says “The process ranges from slightly painful to excruciatingly painful.” The antelope thing’s eyes glow red and says “Tell me your deepest desire.” The goat thing takes out a notebook and pencil and is all aquiver with anticipation. HurryUp decides they don’t have anything she really wants anyway and is about to leave the shop. Just then Flinthoof comes up, excusing himself past Jimmy. The proprieters say to Flinthoof that he has nothing else they desire and tell him to leave. Jimmy and HurryUp leave at this. The shop is called The Three Sisters Fluff.

The rest of the group has caught up to Jimmy and HurryUp as they leave. Autumn, being a bit drunk has veered toward the stall, but Flame pulls her back… nodding at HurryUp’s expression. So she “Ooopsies!” and rejoins the group. A little teeny tiny goat with the whitest fur and bluest eyes ever seen pops in front of HurryUp and says “You look like the kind of pony that appreciates a bargain!” “Limited time only, we are offering the Spyglass that Never Sees Wrong.” “And of course, you are wondering what the price is! For you, it is only two brains.” “This deal needs to be sweetened, I didn’t fall off the haytruck this season… well, I did – but still.” “Oooo sweetened! Well!” She grins and looks over HurryUp’s shoulder, “You look like a McCorn from Neighbraska!” Autumn is looking around for Maize confusedly. “And you look like his friend,” to HurryUp. “I’m still waiting.” Eventually HurryUp for, instead of the spyglass, the location of the stall that sells the eggs, in exchange for the answer to who her friend is. The goat says to HurryUp that she is a good negotiator. Tiny goat goes back to her stall and the tiny print on the sign says Bargain Basement. There is a note on HurryUp’s flank that says ‘Yes she is.’ Autumn takes the note and puts it in her saddlebag.

In the library there is a odd buzzing that is starting to annoy Joneigh and then there is a bunch of flowers under her nose. “Will you carry this for me?” Now she notices that Shucks is standing there. He wants her to go to see the Senior Librarian at the infirmary. So, she begrudgingly leaves her notes and books, takes the flowers and follows Shucks. She gives the flowers back to Shucks to give the Librarian. Joneigh asks how she is. She asks about the books and Joneigh’s research. She asks about the overdue books. “Oh the Extremely Overdue Books.” A pony was asking about one of those books when everything went black.” “They actually spelled the name rigtht, most get it spelled wrong.. the ‘Antomy of Rock’ and I haven’t seen that book for 65 years. I can remember the day I checked the book out, but I can’t remember the pony. When I do, I get this taste in my mouth, like my grandma’s butter biscuits.” Joneigh asked what the medics thought had happened to her. They told her she’d been poisoned. What about the pony that was asking for the book. “She was a unicorn and maybe a teenager and she was blue.” Joneigh says that she is glad the Librarian is ok and then asks her about the card for the Bookstore that fell out of a book in the restricted area (also that the cat gave her). The Senior Librarian says “That is a very nice piece of antique paper dear.” She mentions a book about Nailville Shoey. This gives Joneigh an excuse to see if she can find the bookstore Ineffable Books & Sundry. She tells Shucks to help her find the address.

It is a skinny building between two others. The interior is much bigger than the outside, the book shelves go all the way to the ceiling, six stories up, but it looks much like a very crowded bookstore. There is a tinkle of a bell, then the sound of a cup slipping onto a saucer. There are sound of hoofsteps and a pegasus pony is coming toward them, he is antique ivory, with off-white mane/tail, waistcoat type garment with books, pencils & bookmarks stuck in all the pockets and a cutie mark of a flaming sword. He says “Good afternoon.” She greets him and tells him of the book she is looking for. He goes on about different editions… she chooses the newest. She looks about including up… up is one of her directions. He asks if there is anything else she is looking for of would she like to browse. She asks about “Anatomy of Rock”. He goes to look to see if they have it and Joneigh shops through the stationary type items.

She gets a french curve, a purple inked pen, a notebook and a small sketchbook for Autumn. Shucks has found the most recent farmer’s almanac and is slowly reading it. They do not have the book she wants and he says another pony asked for that book several years back. She asks for several of the other books that are missing from the library. The shopkeeper puts on his glasses and looks over the top of them at her. “Ah ha, you are a Librarian.” “And you are here with one of the Mares in Black.” She doesn’t actally admit to it, but hedges that maybe. “I knew this day would come.” Joneigh can feel huge magic of a thunderstorm building outside the building. “Oh so you brought friends, did you?” “No, I thought they were with you, I am only with him.” and points at Shucks. “Whomever is outside is not with us.” Shucks reminds Joneigh that Autumn said to remind her about the device and goes to check the door.

It has suddenly gotten dark and the lanterns have lit themselves in the bookshop. Joneigh pulls out her communication device and says “Danger in Canterlot, storm building outside, think I am in a safe place, and need advice.” She introduces herself and Shucks and asks if the building is protected. When she looks at him, there is now a flaming sword floating in front of him and he says “I am Zero Fail and I’d like to believe you but you brought a Mare in Black into my shop and it is protected from many things, but not everything.” There is a large ZAP from the front of the store. When they look he was trying to shoot home the bolt on the door as it was hit with lightening. Several critters pop out of Shuck’s mane when he is shocked; Komono dragons, cloud eels, bats, spiders, etc. Joneigh tries to ease Zero Fail’s mind and goes to help Shucks.

At the Black Market, Autumn’s pocket vibrates and she looks around, “What is that?” Flame hushes her. Autumn digs out the Card and listens to what Joneigh says and that makes her completely sober, and now Flame is now shitfaced. She tells the card that they made it to the Market, to get somewhere safe and she wishes she was there.

At the bookshop, Zero Fail backs up, points the sword at her and says “The Solar Queen sent you? It is worse than I thought!” She puts up her hooves in supplication and says that Celestia didn’t send her, she only mentioned her because that calms some folk down. She says, “I actually sent by Prow Lee, who looks a lot like a cat.” Shucks says “You should prolly go out a back exit.” rather dazedly. Then POOF Bone appears next to Joneigh! Zero Fail asks if Bone has broken with her father. Joneigh pulls out goggles and looks at Bone, there is an aura about her! It looks like the Aura of Bedrock, completely. Bone is telling the animals they would be safer in the mane than out and that we should leave as whatever is outside wants in. Zero Fail looks at Joneigh and asks, “Do you swear, by your honor as a part-time librarian, that Prowl Lee sent you, and not Celestia?”

As she does so swear, she looks at Zero Fail and sees very bright light that prisms in many directions. The flaming sword disappears, “Come this way and put those things away, they can find you with those on!” “We need to take my friend with us,” and she takes Bone to help her with Shucks. Bone suggests that he come with us, but covering our six. “Ok, Autumn’s second sister, but you go… go through that door, I will be right behind you.” Zero Fail takes the kettle off the fire and leads them through a room (looks like Joneigh’s grandma’s flat). He takes them to a second room where there is a circle of silver metal in the floor with a six pointed star and runes, “Get in the circle, all of you.” Shucks is at the door between the shop and the first room and kicks back at someone and there is a lot of crashing from the bookshop. “Come on Shucks, into this circle.” “Just a second.” “Flash, kick, zap.” Everyone gathers in the circle, Zero Fail stares at circle and two kimono dragons, several spiders and the three ponies suddenly are somewhere else… no Shucks with them. “It is about time you got here.” says Prow Lee.

At the Black Market, the antelope thing pops up beside Autumn and says “And now you owe us a favor.” Autumn takes a deep breath, then nods. A receipt appears before Autumn floating in the air from The Three Sisters Fluff. She takes it and tucks it somewhere safe in her bag. She hauls Flame to her feet and suggests food. Borealis shows up with deep fried corn on a stick and a barrel. “Anyone hungry?” Autumn takes some for she and Flame. HurryUp and Autumn see the flags discribed by the Bargin Fairy ahead. They see Flinthoof is walking out of the stall saying that he should have come to them sooner, “their prices are so much more reasonable”. Aurora asks him what his secret is, and he says “Well if you must know.. erm…” A voice next to her says “You must give fair value.” It is a black goat with ebony hooves and deepest black eyes. Then Flinthoof answers Aura, “Oh you have to let me draw you in a pose of my choosing.” Aurora spends several minutes trying to negotiate around Flinthoof’s price before she finally realizes that neither he nor anything he knows is worth the time she has already wasted.

Jimmy and HurryUp enter the stall where the proprietors are negative space value of the Sisters of Fluff. Their products are similar to the other sisters, but everything tarnished or battered, or rusted, et cetera. “Oh, new customers!” Jimmy greets them and says “I think I have some information for you.” She seems to know all about Jimmy. “What will you pay for it?” HurryUp sees a weird transparent cone descending from the ceiling and engulfs Jimmy and the the three sisters. “So, what information have you got for us?” He is offering which three ponies the eggs were used upon and by who is coming to find the seller if they will remove all the eggs. “Have we reached an accord?” Jimmy receives a receipt “All the ether-e-eel eggs on mortal plane to be destroyed or removed in exchange for two extremely important facts.” So Jimmy tells them.

Autumn looks at Jimmy & HurryUp, “Since we have what we came for and a bit more, so maybe it is time for us to leave.” GONG. HurryUp says “I am going to the Bargain Fairy.” The stallkeepers suggest they could arrange for shelter now. Autumn wonders what a fair price would be. GONG. Autumn says the price is too steep and followed after HurryUp and Jimmy. There is a note on HurryUp’s flank that says ‘Follow me.’ They all run for the Bargain Basement. They all manage to get there before the last GONG. “The price for a night’s shelter is a night of entertainment that I can resell.” They agree and each ends up in a room alone (or if they are a couple, with their partner) with the Bargain Fairy.

Joneigh, Bone, Zero Fail and the creatures are in a room with Prow Lee. “Look what kind of trouble you were in.” He opens drapes over a window to show them the tornado surrounding the bookstore with all sorts of palace guards and mages fighting to contain it. Joneigh still doesn’t know where she is exactly.

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