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Blitz Boom

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@Blitz Boom

On 2024-04-02 at 9:31 AM, Blitz Boom said:

"It is nice to see you have resolve, and faith in one another. It will do you well, in your future trials."

"I concur. It is not an easy task, but by all accounts an important one. There comes a time when everyone needs to try and communicate, and evolve. Being isolated and cut off from everyone else, only takes you so far.

You might think it hypocritical, since we are also isolated, but we do make contact. And have taken a step further, by sending some of our kits to the town of Ponyville. It's risky, but we trust they will be safe. At least that they will be now."

“I hoped others among the longma would see things the way you do, elders, but some are set in their ways. Maybe there is no convincing them, as much as I would like to see them come around to a different perspective. But Lin is right; I really want this to work, so I will work at it, even if it seems impossible. I can’t just turn my back on the longma despite them giving me the one reason why I should have to abandon them. Whatever wrongs they’ve done to me, I just can’t lump them all as a lost cause.”

“The same way you’ve refused to forgive your old friend despite him helping us? He’s already doing more than others after he offered to keep the ruins hidden, but from what I remember, you still wouldn’t give him a chance.”

“Tch. Don’t remind me. However, I heard what he had to say, and I… may talk with him about it in private. We’ve already come to an understanding about what happened in the past. If you don’t believe me, Omen can vouch; she was there, and if it weren’t for her, I would’ve done something I’d regret for the rest of my life.”

Lin paused, taken aback by what Sen just mentioned. He had his reasons for wanting nothing to do with his old friend, Xin, but between this and seeing them acting more amicably with each other, maybe there’s something to this new development. Sen’s somber tone was uncharacteristic, but it seemed he had found a breakthrough. There was just no telling what might become of them, but there was a hint of optimism for the two friends. Perhaps something of their old friendship could be mended.

She then turned to the Ki’nathar, initially wondering if she needed to verify her brother’s claims. However, she relented, convinced of the truth of the matter. “Thanks, Omen, for looking out for Sen.”

The siblings knew they weren't setting a good example for the others longma, and Elder Ghilan would have his work cut out for him if he were to constantly check on their behavior. All this would take a toll on him under normal circumstances, but it wouldn’t be for now. There was more to worry about, most notably the meeting with the elders. A weight may be lifted if the other elders were to be convinced of what Sen and Lin experienced. Then again, even the siblings would need to do their prep work to ensure the whole event goes well, and that means making the necessary preparations.

On 2024-04-02 at 9:31 AM, Blitz Boom said:

"I can offer you some meditation advise if it were. Perhaps it will be of some help, but you will need to put in the work.

That said, perhaps there would be something that could be done to undo the initiate hold there is on your minds. But I would need specific details from the ruins then. Some record of how it were applied in the first place. Have I that, I am certain we can have it safely neutralized."

"Oh, that would be a fun time. But don't stress yourselves too much now. You three have an important task ahead of you it sounds like. It should be your first focus. If you try too much at once, you will simply spread yourselves too thinly.

This meeting with your elders. Have you prepared for what they are bound to ask? Some things will likely be obvious to you, but have you thought on the answers yet? Preparation is an important thing. Doubly so for something as monumental as the first step, to a brighter tomorrow."

“We’ve considered what the other elders would be asking us, but I am not sure if experience carries much weight during these kinds of talks. Maybe you could tell us your thoughts and perspectives on something? I’m sure one thing they will ask about is why the longma should be concerned about other creatures. They’ve gone through many years only looking after their own interests without problems. Opening ourselves up may create more problems, and we are very ill-equipped to handle them.”

“You mentioned earlier that you send kits to Ponyville. If you do not mind us asking, what purpose does that serve and what could be learned from that?”

It was an admittedly odd thing to mention, but Sen wondered if what the kitsune went through could be similar enough to the longma nowadays. Maybe there was something new to be gained from understanding what made the isolated kitsune. Such a lesson could be valuable to the siblings and the rest of the longma in the village. Then again, there was another matter about what the longma could bring to the table, as some other creatures may only look for the advantages of getting to know the longma. The isolationism may not work in the siblings’ favor, but they will consider learning from the experiences of the kitsune to understand how to go about the world and find answers to problems they didn’t think they’d ever encounter.

That said, there was also the matter of preparing their own minds for something that could easily take over them if it were to ever come to that. Meditation was something familiar to Sen and Lin, more so for the former despite being a little out of practice. It was the latter part that eluded the siblings: having details from the ruins and knowledge of how the trigger was created. 

Having some experience with meditation, Sen definitely saw the merits behind it, gladly welcoming anything that could help. 

“There was very little to learn from the ruins about what the entity that took over Lin does to take control of the longma. However, we would appreciate any help we could get to keep our minds secure from them. If meditation can help, we’d like to learn from you. Maybe we can set aside a little time for that.” 

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@EQ_Theta

17 hours ago, EQ_Theta said:

“I hoped others among the longma would see things the way you do, elders, but some are set in their ways. Maybe there is no convincing them, as much as I would like to see them come around to a different perspective. But Lin is right; I really want this to work, so I will work at it, even if it seems impossible. I can’t just turn my back on the longma despite them giving me the one reason why I should have to abandon them. Whatever wrongs they’ve done to me, I just can’t lump them all as a lost cause.”

“The same way you’ve refused to forgive your old friend despite him helping us? He’s already doing more than others after he offered to keep the ruins hidden, but from what I remember, you still wouldn’t give him a chance.”

“Tch. Don’t remind me. However, I heard what he had to say, and I… may talk with him about it in private. We’ve already come to an understanding about what happened in the past. If you don’t believe me, Omen can vouch; she was there, and if it weren’t for her, I would’ve done something I’d regret for the rest of my life.”

Sohe smiled at the response, and chuckled weakly before responding. Zhao kept quiet in the meantime, waiting for Sohe to respond. As should be obvious by now, the kitsune valued the words of their elders tremendously, and Sohe were older than Zhao. Even if they both held the same role in their society, she saw Sohe in the light of one whom she should follow, and respect, and had done so since before she became an elder herself. That sort of admiration did not go away, just because she were an elder herself.

Sure they had their disagreements and arguments, but the little things were where you could see the unspoken hierarchy. Such as not interrupting another, or who got served first, when tea were passed around. Sohe did not have the power to decide for them all, but she did have the position of respect, for others to give her a degree of priority, and acknowledgement.

"If your elders are too stubborn, think of it less as convincing them, but the next generation to come instead.

Life is finite. Eventually, their time will come to an end, and the next in line will determine how your people will be lead. So if your current elders will not listen, remember that there will be others, and perhaps the next generation will be more amendable to reason."

"I can only agree on that. Yet still, it will not help with your immediate issues, if the ruins you spoke of have become active, and will lure others in, or cause trouble in some other way. Even if your elders will listen, I have doubts they would be interested, or able to handle such a thing. It may even place you worse, if you speak of it.

You may have to rely on yourself, and your closest allies in this. Even if they are not of your own kin. Though be cautious, lest you are seen as exposing them to strangers, before they are ready.

Furthermore, I see no reason to doubt your word currently, on your old friend, Sen. We do not need Omen to vouch for regret, that already rests soundly on your tongue."

It were a troubling path they had ahead of them, and the elders did not envy them. Though in truth, they were curious, and if given the chance, either of them might well accept an invitation to go there themselves, if it were presented eventually. They could be of help more than likely, and as elders of their own people, perhaps there could be some common ground for them to start from. Something not involving a lot of what they might see as radical young creatures, with crazy, new age ideas.

"I had to take him away, before Sen did something bad. I do not understand it all, but Mother wants us to protect our masters. Sen is my friend, so he should also be protected. Even from himself."

Omen were slowly getting some mobility back into her limbs, so she'd hopefully be able to stand up right again soon. It would be best not to give her more alcohol though. Might just be the sake, or it could be drinks in general,. but she seemed to have a zero tolerance biology to it, so it were likely best not to take chances.

17 hours ago, EQ_Theta said:

“We’ve considered what the other elders would be asking us, but I am not sure if experience carries much weight during these kinds of talks. Maybe you could tell us your thoughts and perspectives on something? I’m sure one thing they will ask about is why the longma should be concerned about other creatures. They’ve gone through many years only looking after their own interests without problems. Opening ourselves up may create more problems, and we are very ill-equipped to handle them.”

“You mentioned earlier that you send kits to Ponyville. If you do not mind us asking, what purpose does that serve and what could be learned from that?”

"I see no reason to not answer that. We send our kits to Equestria, for two reasons: Education, and seeking allies.

Kitsune and the Neighponese ponies have not gotten along well historically. We are currently in a state of neutrality, but it could flip towards open warfare on us again, if their next leader is a zealous one. We are capable of defending ourselves, but the question remains, what would happen if they came with something we had not seen. We hear rumor for instance, that the nation of Troy are experimenting with anti magic weaponry. I don't see why they would bring that here, but if they had it, others may too eventually, or some other weapon we had not thought of, and weren't prepared for.

We reproduce slowly. If our towns were destroyed, and our kin killed in droves, it could take a century or more before we would be enough for a full scale village of our own. While it is unlikely to happen, we cannot live under the assumption that it is impossible, when we as elders, are meant to both guide, and protect our kin.

Equestria is a strong nation, but these days it is something it have not been for centuries: Inclusive, and welcoming to non-equines. Among the other races, we see now that if we are to seek an ally in Equestria, this is the time to do so, as Princess Twilight makes more and more connections.

We do not think they can wage war on our behalf, or spare a lot of troops, if things were to happen. But they will reach Neighpon with words of friendship and cooperation eventually, and she does a good job of that. We debated this for nearly a full year, before we came to the conclusion, that she might be able to ally a shattered country, when that day came. But she needed to know of not just the ponies, but also us, free from the faerie tales and what propaganda the Neighponese will tell them.

Our kits went there, to attend her school, where she and her friends wander the halls with regularity. This is the place to expose them to our kin, as well as for them to get a good education not only from our scriptures, but that of the Equestrians too. As they learn, so too will they teach, and show that our kin are not simply tricksters, with no reason beyond playing games, but a people of tradition, with a wealth of depth."

She would need a pause now, to catch her breath, and drink some water. Zhao would take over, as she parched her throat.

"The kits in question, were picked from a group of volunteers, and eventually, the headmistress at the school have agreed to send a student or two to our town as well, to study and learn. We hope that this will lead to her being willing to hear our call for help, in reaching some degree of lasting peace with our government, or at the least be able to provide shelter, or assistance, if the end begins here in Neighpon.

We have interacted with other races for centuries, wandering around, playing some tricks, and observing. Our teachers at times, even bring students out to learn about other races in a controlled environment, like an area caught in a strong illusion, with one or two beings there to show them. Some have even settled down in places far from our shore over time, or roams freely to explore the world.

This is a notable step further, as we are opening our reclusive towns up for others now, but we believe it is time to do so. Weapons, new diseases, an uprise in stronger and stronger monsters- There will eventually come a time, when standing alone, marks a disaster that we might be unable to recover from. Your people will have to acknowledge and accept that as well, before your day of reckoning comes. Which might be sooner than you have expected, if the parasite is anything to go by."

17 hours ago, EQ_Theta said:

“There was very little to learn from the ruins about what the entity that took over Lin does to take control of the longma. However, we would appreciate any help we could get to keep our minds secure from them. If meditation can help, we’d like to learn from you. Maybe we can set aside a little time for that.” 

"There is much still to do for us today, so our time will soon enough become limited, but I can lend you a scroll that might prove educational."

Zhao would twirl her right paw, and a stream of raw magic would flow from her paw, and weave into a small, ethereal fox, running out of the room. A slight afterglow followed it like a trail, as it ran off.

"It will retrieve a scroll for us, that will help you. I will expect you to not destroy it, and to read what it is in there properly. It's in the common tongue, so it should not present an issue, I would assume?"

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

 

@Rising Dusk

On 2024-04-03 at 4:37 AM, Rising Dusk said:

"Yes.  Living stallions.  Fine specimens of the hard working ponies our land has to offer.  Manehattan is large and vast, you'll find many such eases of city transportation throughout.  Just keep an eye out for carriages that say 'Taxi' upon them, wave them down with your hoof and they'll get you to where you need to go,"

"No need to even grow your own, or make a personal carriage. How delightful concept.

Last I had a carriage of my own, I had to go and not only salvage and repair it, but also make my own wickerman to drag it. These fine gentlecolts are much easier on the eye though."

They also wouldn't need the maintenance that her wickerman had needed. She did a fine job with it, and it didn't drop body parts all over the place, but sometimes something came crashing through the woods, and it were a pain to remake it  over and over again. Honestly she didn't feel that bad, when the carriage and the wickerman were smashed finally beyond repair. The most important things in it were mostly intact, and she managed to get a good fire going that night, to stave off the cold.

One had to look for the positive things in life. Sometimes that required you to narrow your eyes, and look closely for that silver lining, but she believed it best to do so. Being in a rut wouldn't get her anywhere. Though she doubted she'd feel dismayed anytime soon. Equestria were a wealth of marvelous sights, that she were simply thrilled to take in. Good or bad, it were a wealth of new experiences, as well as things to work on. It were going to be a fun time, and sooner or later, she were sure that Will-O would feel that too. She just needed time, to get through all the horrendous things that she had become aware of in the last day.

Caramel wouldn't say it aloud, but she truly felt no joy, telling Will-O of her heritage. Much as she knew that the mare had to know, just as much as the priestess did, for the safety of herself, seeing the light drain from her eyes, and her face fall... Will-O were her friend, and causing her this pain were not something she wished to do. Yet it were better that it had come from her, than from some uncaring guard, making her worried she might be about to be executed.

On 2024-04-03 at 4:37 AM, Rising Dusk said:

Dawn hardly appeared to take notice herself but instead replied to Will-O instead, "Just be friendly, no dark magic and no undead.  Present company excluded, of course."  She looked over her shoulder and winked at Chirpy to emphasis her point.  "Observe and absorb, sweet Will-O.  Whenever in doubt, be friendly and it'll get you far.  As is so taught by our Princess of Friendship.  Might does not make right here in Equestria," she nodded.  

"...Huh? Oh, I'm s-sorry, it's just... Your home. I didn't think it would also do this outside."

"A marvel of magic this one. I think we can both learn much from Dawn, wouldn't you say so?"

"If this sort can be learned, but... It's very impressive. Just more expansive than I had thought. Much more powerful in nature, than anything I thought I'd ever see, and live through."

There were always the lingering threat in Harrowmark, of getting Twisted's attention, and potentially have his grasp of primordial magic, heaved upon you. Something that were bound to end in horrifying death, of worse. Will-O were not one who believed that could never happen to her, and so she always figured that if she saw immensely powerful magic, it would be that, and it would be the last thing she saw. To think that she had now seen this, both inside and out, and were not just able to live to tell the tale, but actually talked to in friendly terms, with the one who caused it? She never would have believed it, if it had been told her before today.

It were exciting honestly. Exciting, and also somewhat terrifying. Dawn was lovely and seemed very sweet, but her magic were terrifying in its capabilities, and made her certain that if there were one thing in this world, that she never wanted to be, it were Dawn's enemy. She got the feeling that Dawn's did in fact make right. Long as she handled the evidence, and she probably could.

"M-My apologies for before, Miss Dawn. I will take your advice to heart, and do my best to follow it."

On 2024-04-03 at 4:37 AM, Rising Dusk said:

Dawn entered the carriage.  That first step into the carriage did not produce the typical rainbow ripple Dawn had been accompanied by, marking the street as the end of her domain.  The inside of the carriage matched much of the decadence her own manor and that of the ones around them had displaced in the high society district.  Elegant crowning, polished leaf motifs and the most plush seats of the purest satin.  Dawn took a seat that faced toward the back of the carriage, but she spared a moment to turn about to face forward.  Reaching up she moved a sliding crystal window that gave her access to the stallions pulling the carriage.  "Manehattan First Bank, if you'd please, gentlecolts," she gave direction while waiting for the other two to enter.

Gathered together, they'd then set off into the city.  Their first tour being that of the other luxurious manors passing by in the windows at a gallop.

They were both majorly impressed with what they saw, on the inside of this carriage. Chirpy had a nice view from the outside too, but here inside, it were a marvel of indulgence. They were both slow to enter as they gazed upon that, and then further, wouldn't even seat at first. They were too busy both poking at the seating, feeling the softness, and look at the indulgent interior to be in a hurry. Caramel laughed a little at how silly they must look, when she realized that.

"Ohohoho. I can imagine we must seem funny right now, poking at things like we're wanderers of a different age, trying to understand the oddness around us. Yet still, that is a very apt description, and this place is... How would I best describe it... I have seen certain overindulgent ponies and diamond dogs in my time, that flaunts what they have, by lavishly making a big deal out of their homes, and what they own. While I expected your home to blow that out of proportions, I did not think a carriage of all things, to be beating that as well. And without being tacky even."

She'd take a seat, shortly followed by the now blushing Will-O, after she had been made aware of how they must appear. Something that made Caramel laugh some, as she found the display highly amusing.

They'd both get a good look at this part of town, as they gazed out of the windows. Quite the sight, though Will-O did muse over it, after a time of seeing the same degree of luxury around them.

"This is the part of town where the higher end ponies are, right?"

"Does something worry you, Will-O?"

"Yes. Well... Maybe. I just see all of this, and I kinda just worry, if that means that away from here, there's many that have to live on the streets."

They came from a society were resources were finite, as well as scarce. If one had to live like Dawn did, hundreds of others would have to live in a way where they would be lucky to get food during a day, much less have shelter. This were a brilliant sight yes, but the thought had crept up on her, as she kept seeing the luxury, and it tainted her modicum of joy somewhat. Despite her heritage likely making some think otherwise, Will-O cared about others, a lot. It were one of the reasons she were a town protector in the first place. So the thought that all of this, came at the expense of others being able to live, caused her some concern.

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

 

@Lawyer Slip

While he were talking - more specifically, after he slapped himself - her smile would lessen somewhat, and she'd tilt her head to the side, looking at this peculiar new friend of hers again.

"I mean, if there ever were a place for an alicorn, it would be Ponyville. This place have lots of types. Same with changelings, of which there's a few in town. I've spooked one right out of his disguise.

Say, are you... Okay? You seemed to stagger and then slap yourself. Have you recently hit your head? Maybe overextended yourself too much, or you've forgotten to drink enough water?"

She were just worried about him. If he'd just let her know that there weren't anything serious, or if he'd just explain it, she'd ease up. Amnesia were not good, but it wasn't life threatening. She were mostly worried about him potentially being about to pass out, since sometimes those who were woozy, would slap themselves to try and *wake up*. Usually it wasn't something bad. Could be a heat stroke, lack of water, blood sugar- The whole works. But it could also be more serious, so she just wanted to be sure., because she cared, and didn't want to see him hurt.

Provided he eased her mind on this - he did not need to provide details, if he decided on the truth - she'd continue on with the big smile returning to her face, and the joyful aura that made it seem like sunshine and bunnies were about to fall out of her mouth when she spoke. If not, she'd still respond, but her attitude would be more muted, as her worry would go over her general, joyful enthusiasm.

"And my companion's not someone you met. Probably anyway. Far as I know, they're pretty rare. Like, *Thought-to-be-extinct* sort of rare. Her name's Fah'lina, and she's a... Hold on.... Right, Discordian Knight Squirrel. There's a more fancy species name, but it's pretty boring.

I ran into her nearly a month ago, and she's decided to stick around. Not my pet though, Nooo. She doesn't like being called that.

I'd say how she were, but it's kinda hard to explain properly. I think you'll have more fun seeing it for yourself, when she shows up later. Lyriel took her to see a friend in the forest. You've seen Lyriel actually, or this might not make sense. She moved into the forest with that dragon a few weeks ago. She's a dryad. You ever seen one of those? Made all out of vegetation and stuff. Kinda like Evergrown, but different."

Ponyville attracted a lot of odd characters, and especially in recent months. An alicorn here were special, but at least to her, it fit the whole thing of Ponyville being a weird mixture of creatures, from all over the place. Now meeting him, were going to be a different thing entirely. She might get a bit tourist'y by that point.

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@Blitz Boom

What, the slapping thing? Oh! Uh . . . that's, just, something I do! Yeah! It's definitely not a side affect from my own mental insecurities manifesting themselves causing me to physically slap myself, aheheheh.

Anyways. If you ever wanted to meet Rich, I' sure he would love to meet you as well! He's my best friend and my roommate. See, when I first arrived here, I was alone, there was nobody who wanted to take me in, and then he stepped out of the shadows, because it turned out, he'd been hiding just like how I was before you and I started having this conversation, heheheh . . . Ahem, uh no, I have never seen a Dryad, but I have read about them. Never read about Evergrown though. Also, your friend Fah'lina is a Discordian knight squirrel eh? Again, never heard of it, but that name Discord is very familiar. It was mentioned to me by uhhhhhhhhhhhhh . . . . . . . . just a guy. Yeah, just a guy, definitely not another Draconicous, nope, just a regular earth pony ehehehehh  . . .

*WHAT ARE YOU DOING YOU MORON?!?!?! YOU SOUND SO FREAKING SUS RIGHT NOW!!!! CRAP, WHAT IF WE SPILL THE BEANS ABOUT THE RUBY? OR SPECTER? OR THE OTHERS? OR HIM? OR DO NOT SLAP YOURSELF, THAT'LL MAKE IT WORSE!!!!! It's fine, just, take a breath, and make normal conversation. Oh wait! Say this:

Say, Ziggy, if you wanted I could even bring you to Rich now if you wanted! We don't live to far from here, just outside of town, it's only a couple of wing flaps away, what do ya say?

Deep down, he prayed she say yes. With Rich, he could get a grip on himself, an actually calm down, he always felt safer when he was around. Especially ever since Specter and the others went back to their respective timelines.

(OOC: Oopsie! I seem to have spoiled his origin story! How do these things happen? Also Blitz, if I can be real with you for sec, thanks so much for doing this with me, this has been my favorite part of the forums so far, I've loved doing this :D)

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On 2024-04-02 at 9:31 AM, Blitz Boom said:

@Catpone Cerberus

 

"Ah, so you're from a separate dimension? That would explain the outlandish metalwork you are imbued with."

She wasn't all that surprised. There had been scientists that had proven the existence of other worlds, since before she had arrived there.  They even had a small token from another world, that were the basis of how they had managed to get a rare glimpse into one of them. Though they hadn't been able to do it for a while. It still required an alignment of various things, and some unorthodox methods. And even then, it were unstable, and inconsistent. It were enough to prove it though. So yes, she could believe this story, and it would fit well, as she could imagine that she would have heard, if there had ben any research into things like what she were seeing now.

There were also the way the princesses banished others to other worlds of course, but Center Zero were a place for scientists. It wasn't the same if they couldn't find a scientific way to handle things, rather than trying to find a way to harness the elements. Which would have required them to find those things in the first place, so not like that had been much of an option anyway.

"Could I inquire about your method of transportation? Were it intentional, or accidental? And you mention your technology is more advanced. Is that only in regards to biomechanical advancements, or is it true for other fields too? For instance, might you have some knowledge on biochemistry and advanced extra-species transmutation? For example the molecular transference of meat and bones, to an active, purely natural substance, such as that of rock, or water, and vice versa? Or were it more in the veins of robotics?"

It were a shot in the dark perhaps, but it never hurt to ask, yes? She were curious now, and depending on the answer, perhaps even a little hopeful. The Equestria she lived in, and the wider world in general, far as she knew, had next to no information regarding transmutation, beyond more *simple* things, like one metal to another, or iron to stone. Elements within the same spectrum, were something that were getting some fascinating results here and there, but she sought information beyond that. Transformation not within the same classification or element, but completely different. The change of the entire molecular structure from for instance a normal, fleshy pony, to a purely elemental state, or as it were, the other way around. That were currently so far out from their abilities among the scientists she even knew of, that there had only ever been one study even touching upon the subject, and it were extraordinarily lacking in nature.

They'd likely be at least forty years away from even the most basic advancements in that field. Or she could ask this one, who seemed to be from a more technologically advanced version of their society. If so, it might be that science as a whole were decades, of not centuries ahead. Perhaps there would be some answers to be had there, and they could do an exchange of information? She might not be the known survivor from Center Zero, but she had lived and worked in the town, and thus could provide the navigation and passwords required, for a smooth transition of information. Be it from the known survivor, or the town itself, if they could get access to it.

Their orders would arrive within the next four minutes, so they had a bit of time to chat before things moved on.

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

 

@Catpone Cerberus

The undead leader, looked at her, with small lights flickering in the empty eye sockets. He may be more preserved than all but the deer she had passed before, but he were still undead. Mummified, and lacking in things, such as organs, or eyes. It had seemingly not been deemed important, or it were something related to tradition. A question for someone else to answer, as she had more pressing matters to attend, than pondering over ancient history.

"Perhaps you speaketh truth. I know that they left with great speed, and it followed them. But now it is back. If not following you, then maybe they have perished, and it must return to slumber. The dragon's might, could force it back."

He'd shift his face, seemingly looking behind her, at the cut off entrance she had gotten through, whilst the priestess would lower her staff, a faint aura of darkness beginning to pour. Yet he rose a hoof, and it halted, the magic returning to her staff, before it touched Leviathan.

"So hear my words, equine: Take her, return it to slumber below, and then, you will know freedom. Leave this temple, and neither you, nor she shall follow."

His horns would light up with a see through darkness, and rays of dark magic would hastily impact Leviathan's chest, and towards Ruby. The ones from the left antler hitting Leviathan, would carve a dark mark on her scales, marking her with a curse. Whilst the ones from the right antler, would be attempting to hit Ruby, and carving a symbol on her too. She could avoid it, but he would be relentless, and would likely eventually hit the mark, unless she did something unusual. If not, she'd feel as if a pit had hit her stomach, that refused to leave. An unpleasant, unwelcome curse, that would not ease up, until their task would be done.

If she were impacted, the priestess would move away from Leviathan, who'd soon after open her eyes, and let out a large gasp, heaving for breath, before grimacing, and clutching her belly.

"Urgh, feels like something's squirming around in there. What've you done?"

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

 

@Catpone Cerberus

Late the day after, there'd come a letter to Trox and Sheska, informing them that her prosthetic had been finished, and to please come to the hospital when they had time. Said hospital still had regular hours for the next hour, so if they made their way there now, they'd be able to have this done before day's end.

If they did get there in time, they'd be able to ask for Doctor Neon, who would be reading a paper. Her office were clean here, and things were calm this time of the evening, so she could relax a bit. At least until she saw them, and a grin got on her face.

"Heeey, somepony got my message! Great stuff. We got the stuff in earlier than I had dared to hope, and I went right on it. School's been quiet today, so I go back here at times to help out. You know how it is, yeah?

Anyway, before I show you, can I see your tail before that please? Just want to make sure we shouldn't clean it first, just in case. Been a hectic time in town, so all sorts of dust and grime could have snuck in, even if it wasn't meant to."

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@Lawyer Slip

bWkyzUy.png

(forgot to add a picture of her. Here it is)

"Las Pegasus is amazing! It's mostly in two parts, right? The cloud layer is the biiiig tourist area. Some casinos, but mostly foal friendly attractions all over. Then there's the ground level, where most of the casinos, living spaces for non-pegasi, and business tend to be. Some of the buildings are so tall though, that they poke into the sky layer. The main hospital is one of those.

You really outta see it. Just party at the game corner, take the big ferris wheel, play your pocket change away at the Top Suits- There's loads to do, all throughout the day and night You seriously need to see it! I lived there my whole life, and I've never seen anywhere like it. Of course I did spend most of that time in the hospital, but I still got to see things through the windows, and a lot more when I turned 17, and could go outside more than a few hours. I did like the time my parents and the hospital staff let me go out with my siblings. Hehe, they look more like mom, so more pegasi-like than me, and they're her height too, but they're great ponies. My brother is working at a wildlife resort, and my sister's working on becoming an accountant like our mom is.

It's Really funny when others see the three of us together. We're triplets, and they look exactly the same, but I am nowhere near it. It confuses the hay of of folks."

She'd giggle, after going off a bit of a tangent, and stepping in place. Culminating with her pulling out a picture from inside her vest. It showed her, next to a pair of regular pegasi. Their coats were snow white, and their mane and tails lemon green and bushy in fashion, as if they'd just been widely tussled, and they both grinned widely at the camera, with Ziggy towering over them in the middle. Her mane too seeming tussled, so they had fun before it were taken it seemed. Though the mare were laying down on her belly, so she were more in their head height than normally. The only difference between the other two, seemed to be a mark. A lemon green droplet in their coat, that were under the left eye of the female, and the right eye of the male.

Flanking them all, were a mare and a stallion. The mare looking having a faded, dark green coat and orange mane and tail, looking over through a pair of sharp glasses at the camera. She looked very professional, standing there in her suit and her tied back mane, but the pegasus were not frumpy. All smiles here.

The stallion were a zebra, plain and simple. White and black, with a slicked back mane, neck and leg rings, tribal markings- The whole thing. He smiled, but looked more reserved about things, as he gazed into the camera. Not a harsh thought in his head, just not the most comfy around cameras.

"See? That's me in the middle, then my siblings Lemon Drop and Citrus Slinger. And then there's our parents! That's mom. She's an accountant. I think I said that already? Anyway, her name's Math Crunch. And then there's dad. They met because he's a showman in Las Pegasus. He always draws a huge crowd, since folks are crazy curious about zebras. That's how they met to. His name is Zhoran. They're the bestest.

I also have a companion somewhere here in town, but she's off doing something right now. You'll meet her later."

She put the picture back in her inner pocket, and pushed up her frames. There were no glass in them, it were just he frames. Why she wore those then, were another matter entirely.

"Anyway, you like racing, huh? Like professionally, or a hobby? Cause Las Pegasus have a race! I couldn't ever win that sort. I don't fly normally, so it takes off speed and stuff, but eh, it works for me, and it's more fun that way. Race ponies are a fun sort though. I knew a few in the hospital. They came around now and again because of strains. And some of them hit the track rings. That sounded real painful."

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@Evil Pink One

"If there is something, it's probably nothing serious. Just chin up, and let's see."

She'd apply a local anesthetic, and then open up to see. And rightly so, there were something, that the doctor would slowly, and carefully extract. It appeared to be a sliver of metal. Probably something that had gotten dislodged and got stuck in there after he got poisoned, and lost track of things. Potentially when Shark tackled him. More than likely that honestly. Either way, she'd take it out with the pincers, and then leave it to the side for now.

She didn't even have to ask for what she needed next, as the lieutenant would give her a freshly retrieved tetanus shot, a bandage, and some cleaning alcohol.

"This might sting a bit, but try and keep still."

She'd clean the wound, then stitch it up, and at the end, give him the shot. Wouldn't take more than a few minutes. She were a professional after all.

"There we go. Just try not to rummage in dirt, and you'll be fine. Come back if something seems off though, okay? Better to be sure."

Shark would go over and sniff the metal, getting a sense of how her mate's blood were. She had no interest in ingesting it currently though. Her mate were not food, and she should only taste his blood if she were licking a wound that were bleeding, yes? Probably.

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

 

@EQ_Theta

The elders looked pleased as they saw the three interact. It were good to see that there were a true bond between them like this. They were likely to need it, for the times ahead of them, if their words were any indication. It did not sound as if their meeting with the elders of their village, were something nice, pleasant, or even easy. Worthwhile most certainly though. Even with what little they knew, they could tell that it were going to be a step towards a better future for the longma. The first in a long road, to get to that end goal.

"It is nice to see you have resolve, and faith in one another. It will do you well, in your future trials."

"I concur. It is not an easy task, but by all accounts an important one. There comes a time when everyone needs to try and communicate, and evolve. Being isolated and cut off from everyone else, only takes you so far.

You might think it hypocritical, since we are also isolated, but we do make contact. And have taken a step further, by sending some of our kits to the town of Ponyville. It's risky, but we trust they will be safe. At least that they will be now."

"Yes, the situation with the Oni. I am still surprised they encountered one there, of all places. I haven't heard off them so far from Neighpon before."

"At least it is done. Elder Rhugan handled things well, though I did expect her to stay longer, to speak with the kits, or look around. You know how she is."

"Like you wouldn't be worried about them too. They're your family as well. But you know Rhugan. She plays her own games, and acts when things are right. She likely didn't think it were the right time. I can imagine we will find her absent a few times soon enough."

"Indeed. She is ever her own little mystery. Always were."

"Maybe we should talk of it later. This is of these three, our talks of your sister and our own squabbles can wait."

Zhao would nod, and take a sip more, as well as a biscuit. Rhugan and her were both elders, although she were the oldest, and thus had been able to decide which part of her name she wanted associated with her elder title. She had picked her first name, and thus it fell to her to use their family name of Zhao. It were tradition, and she considered tradition to be highly important.

"There is no easy way, unless you're willing to let me completely rake your mind. It isn't easy to take over a mind, that simply isn't there anymore, but that is not something I would willingly inflict upon anyone, unless under strict duress. It does not sound like you would want to end up in that vegetative state either."

Just because you could do something, didn't mean that you should. Destroying someone's mind, fell comfortably into that category of something that she could technically do, but had no want to do in practice.

"The mind is a delicate muscle, and like any other, it must be trained to be stronger. Meditation exercises will be your simplest way forward, but sharpening your mind can be done in several other ways. Solving complex puzzles or crosswords for instance, can count as light training. But meditation is your best option, that does not include magic. And remember ever, that as said, the mind is delicate. A small mistake, and you could find yourself losing the mind, that you were trying to protect."

"I can offer you some meditation advise if it were. Perhaps it will be of some help, but you will need to put in the work.

That said, perhaps there would be something that could be done to undo the initiate hold there is on your minds. But I would need specific details from the ruins then. Some record of how it were applied in the first place. Have I that, I am certain we can have it safely neutralized."

"Oh, that would be a fun time. But don't stress yourselves too much now. You three have an important task ahead of you it sounds like. It should be your first focus. If you try too much at once, you will simply spread yourselves too thinly.

This meeting with your elders. Have you prepared for what they are bound to ask? Some things will likely be obvious to you, but have you thought on the answers yet? Preparation is an important thing. Doubly so for something as monumental as the first step, to a brighter tomorrow."

She would take a biscuits too, gnawing a bit of it down. It did not need to be, as were shown when Omen took one, and slid it down in her usual fashion, but the elders liked savoring the taste. Had they known there were one who would just down anything, they might have been tempted to add one with extra hot spices of some sort. They might be elders, but they were still kitsune. A harmless prank were all fun and games.

He'd take the shot like it was nothing. Far more worse than this has happened to him.

" thank you" he then bowed down towards the ones who has assisted him.

" I will take your cautions into consideration, if nothing else. Then both of us can leave? I fear that i need a lot of explaining to give to head mistress starlight glimmer." He answered with a hint of worry.

" and i believe you too didn't take any classes." He asked Shark.

@Blitz Boom

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@Blitz Boom
"My arrival was accidental, and I'm not the only one." "The world I come from has been suffering from ever increasing dimensional anomalies for last millennia, the leading theory is that it's a symptom of a dying realm." Solar explained in analyzing manner "What comes to science, as a member of the military, I only know what is relevant for war." "So when it comes to biochemistry, my knowledge goes only as far as things like chemical weapons and super-soldiers go." "Militarily speaking though, both Equestrian empires have put more focus behind biomechanical research and weapons research, over things like biological modification." "Latter however seemed to be the choice of our enemies outside Equestria, and having seen the results myself, they seemed rather successful, with the main point of trouble seemingly being control, as sapient creatures don't like being tools." 

"In general terms, I do believe that when using this world as a reference point, the advancement is true for everything, everything I've seen up to this point here, is by all means, horribly outdated compared to my world of origin." "Our boost of technological advancement was not from a positive source however, as while it brought good things like advancements in medical care, it was fueled by war, anything good is only byproduct." "If you are interested in more detailed examples, I can provide them, however, a public cafe is not the right place for that discussion." 

-----------------------------

Ruby did instinctively try to dodge the first time, but being aware that there was probably no real chance of avoiding it, she didn't waste her already limited energy any further, and when it came to feeling the curse caused, it was just more fuel to her already uncomfortable state, and she couldn't really even be sure if it was caused by the symbol that had appeared, or if it was continuation to what she was already feeling; good thing her kind was physically unable to cry, as she would no doubt be tearing up from the discomfort alone at this point if it would have been part of her normal physique, though, it did cause her usual stoicism to falter a bit in her voice, not enough to be obvious, but enough for anyone who knew her to maybe notice.

She didn't break the 'eye' contact however, even when Leviathan spoke, as she once more addressed the mummy, assuming she wasn't stopped from speaking somehow "Doesn't sound like we have much of a choice." "So what is 'it'? and what exactly are we supposed to do?" "Or are you one of those who only speak in riddles?"  was that they way to talk someone who had just branded you with some kind of probably lethal curse? probably not, but Ruby wasn't going to grovel in front of this thing. 

She also realized that this could be a situation where there was no winning, at least that was the case if the choice of words was considered; she assumed 'it' was the same thing in both context, and the mummy said 'it' could be forced back by dragon's might, 'could', not 'can', so it could be they were given a task that they can't even do. 

----------------
The trio spend some time more downstairs, but after a while, Sheska made her way back upstairs, and soon after Chega and Sear headed to their room too, in the morning, the latter duo came down again, having breakfast and such, and Chega once again entertained whoever was there with songs of various topics. Sheska and Trox meanwhile, stayed in their room for a while, even after waking up, as they had a conversation that had needed to happen since they first woke up in the prison, and after finally pouring over that can of worms, they planned their next moves; what direction they would take their lives now that they were given another future, and what things they would need to deal with first.

After that they went downstairs, and got something to eat, while also talking with Chega, they spoke in their language, but it wasn't anything secret, and rather was them asking her about any individuals she may have met that would be useful in for example keeping Trox's cybernetics running or having Sheska learn the medical plants of this world, and asking about any other kobolds around she may know of. 

So when the letter came, they weren't busy, and thus made their way to the hospital.

The greeted the doctor, as Sheska would go in first with Trox right behind her, they were close, so there was no reason why both wouldn't have been there, not that this was especially private matter anyway, it was just a piece of tail. Sheska took off the makeshift cover, it had had its own charm, but with how quickly it got dirty and in general its makeshift nature made it so that it was nice to be rid of it, no fault of the nurse who made it, just the nature of that type of stuff.  

She positioned the tail in a way so that the doctor had a good view of it, it was clean and all that stuff, since Sheska new how to take care of injuries like that, but she still did as the doctor told, because she knew well how things worked. Both she and Trox also looked at it though, mainly because the bone being visible like that wasn't a pretty sight, even if you were as jaded as they were, and while the nerve damage was such that there was no feeling there, just seeing it did give Sheska, and even Trox, a small sting of ghost pain, as they were reminded of what happened. 




 

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@Blitz Boom

On 2024-04-05 at 5:42 AM, Blitz Boom said:

"If your elders are too stubborn, think of it less as convincing them, but the next generation to come instead.

Life is finite. Eventually, their time will come to an end, and the next in line will determine how your people will be lead. So if your current elders will not listen, remember that there will be others, and perhaps the next generation will be more amendable to reason."

"I can only agree on that. Yet still, it will not help with your immediate issues, if the ruins you spoke of have become active, and will lure others in, or cause trouble in some other way. Even if your elders will listen, I have doubts they would be interested, or able to handle such a thing. It may even place you worse, if you speak of it.

You may have to rely on yourself, and your closest allies in this. Even if they are not of your own kin. Though be cautious, lest you are seen as exposing them to strangers, before they are ready.

“I think the elders may call us out on our foolishness; none may enter the ruins, after all. They have their reasons for calling those places taboo, but if there is a threat coming for the longma, I’m certain they’d at least listen. Though I imagine they’d have some words for us about how we should have stayed away. But you are right. The longma will change leaders one day, and I just hope that they may see sense in finding a better way.”

“Then it would be best that we follow Elder Sohe’s and Elder Zhao’s advice when dealing with the elders or other matters. The elders should at least hear us out. What other reason would they have to call us and Elder Ghilan if not to speak before them?”

“To call us out for venturing into the ruins? Or express their disapproval of Elder Ghilan because they see him stepping up as elder to be some sort of power grab? He said it himself, and he isn’t exactly popular with the elders right now.”

It seemed like there was some limit to what Lin could remember. Despite retaining the memories of the more immediate past, as well as some that may be more ingrained into her mind, there were bits and pieces missing that will still need to be filled in from time to time. At the very least, Sen was now aware that he would need to step in and help her out when necessary. It’ll be more complicated when Elder Ghilan discovers that something has changed in Lin, something that wouldn’t inspire confidence.

Lin didn’t appear to notice anything off with what she mentioned, though she glanced toward her brother and picked up an odd look from him. It was a strange thing for him, especially when everything appeared to be rather normal just moments ago. Something to talk about in private, or a hint at a more pressing matter? She didn’t push the issue and would leave it to her brother to pursue it when needed. Sen was already deep in thought after the elders responded to his other question.

On 2024-04-05 at 5:42 AM, Blitz Boom said:

"I see no reason to not answer that. We send our kits to Equestria, for two reasons: Education, and seeking allies.

Kitsune and the Neighponese ponies have not gotten along well historically. We are currently in a state of neutrality, but it could flip towards open warfare on us again, if their next leader is a zealous one. We are capable of defending ourselves, but the question remains, what would happen if they came with something we had not seen. We hear rumor for instance, that the nation of Troy are experimenting with anti magic weaponry. I don't see why they would bring that here, but if they had it, others may too eventually, or some other weapon we had not thought of, and weren't prepared for.

The elders’ responses were similar to something pointed out by Rosa when they discussed the topic before. Finding allies was valuable, especially when there was something to learn from them. Lessons straight from those who can impart them and being convinced of their benefits was probably the way to go; all that needs to happen now is to find the means to open the roads for that kind of opportunity. The longma weren’t exactly making enemies left and right. Their isolationism makes them neutral to everyone. However, some would see allying with creatures like the ponies of Equestria as a double-sided deal that will draw unwanted attention to them. 

Still, without the elders’ thoughts on the matter, the siblings’ speculation is academic. Inclusive and welcoming may be a good thing, but building alliances may prove more challenging if the other party will eventually need something from the longma. That could prove a more troublesome matter, especially if the longma’s isolationism meant they couldn’t provide something of value. 

“An exchange of ideas and an opportunity to learn? That sounds wonderful! But I might just be speaking for myself and not for the longma as a whole. Still, being able to make preparations and take what lessons we can from others is something the other elders could get behind.”

“It’s going to bring some big changes among the longma, and change that drastic will mean opposition. Having been accustomed to one way of life for so long, it would be difficult to see or imagine anything else. We’ll just need to explain it in such a way that it doesn’t scare or shy them away from wanting to give it a shot.”

“It’s definitely something worth thinking about. Thank you, elders, for your perspectives. I hope that would be a convincing start for the elders back home.”

On 2024-04-05 at 5:42 AM, Blitz Boom said:

"There is much still to do for us today, so our time will soon enough become limited, but I can lend you a scroll that might prove educational."

Zhao would twirl her right paw, and a stream of raw magic would flow from her paw, and weave into a small, ethereal fox, running out of the room. A slight afterglow followed it like a trail, as it ran off.

"It will retrieve a scroll for us, that will help you. I will expect you to not destroy it, and to read what it is in there properly. It's in the common tongue, so it should not present an issue, I would assume?"

It was true that time would be running short, even more so with the siblings expected to be present back home when they were about to travel. Two days wasn’t a long time, depending on how one looked at it, and having to make the trek from the village would take time. Sen would need to place some hope into Lin and Omen, as the task ahead still felt daunting. For now, the matter with the elders would be put on hold for something else the longma were given.”

“We’ll take care of this scroll, elder. Reading it would not be a problem... unless there are some ‘big’ words in it. That part might cause some minor issues, but I doubt it will cause setbacks. I admit I am interested in what it says and how it can improve my meditations.” 

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@EQ_Theta

On 2024-04-06 at 5:26 PM, EQ_Theta said:

“I think the elders may call us out on our foolishness; none may enter the ruins, after all. They have their reasons for calling those places taboo, but if there is a threat coming for the longma, I’m certain they’d at least listen. Though I imagine they’d have some words for us about how we should have stayed away. But you are right. The longma will change leaders one day, and I just hope that they may see sense in finding a better way.”

“Then it would be best that we follow Elder Sohe’s and Elder Zhao’s advice when dealing with the elders or other matters. The elders should at least hear us out. What other reason would they have to call us and Elder Ghilan if not to speak before them?”

“To call us out for venturing into the ruins? Or express their disapproval of Elder Ghilan because they see him stepping up as elder to be some sort of power grab? He said it himself, and he isn’t exactly popular with the elders right now.”

"With all respect I believe they deserve, your elders sounds arrogant and paranoid. Seeing someone stepping up to take a leader role, when one were needed, should be celebrated. It should not be viewed as one who might threaten their power. To me, that is not the views of a just leader, but one worried that a new one has risen, that were not vetted to think as them.

Still, I could be wrong, and they are simply overly cautious, because they fear he is too inexperienced to lead. Were I to offer a suggestion, I would tell Elder Ghilan that he might want to question that if they think he lacks experience, why then not offer him their wisdom. He already holds the mantle of a leader. If knowledge is what he lacks, then that can be offered to him. That is what we do, when one of our younger ones have needed to step up, and lead. Encouraging one who knows that they must be there for their kin, and granting them the wisdom and support to do so, will make for a memorable leader.""

"I would concur that, Elder Sohe, but I would strongly advice too, that those words be said by Ghilan himself, and not you. He must show initiative, humility, and respect, if he is to be taken serious by them. Having others speak for him, would make him seem unable to handle even the most basic of leadership tasks on his own.

Still, they might not be willing to offer him guidance. If that occurs, consider your options. An outsiders perspective, might do him good."

She did not directly state that they might be willing to offer him some guidance, but it were implied, and intended. They might not stand over the same kind of people, yet they were leaders all the same, with some tangible common-ground. There were likely things that they could teach him, if others did not. Even if they had to go and see him, which should not pose a great threat, if it came to that. Kitsune were masters of illusions. A race not partaking in magic, would be hard pressed to see through the deception.

On 2024-04-06 at 5:26 PM, EQ_Theta said:

“An exchange of ideas and an opportunity to learn? That sounds wonderful! But I might just be speaking for myself and not for the longma as a whole. Still, being able to make preparations and take what lessons we can from others is something the other elders could get behind.”

“It’s going to bring some big changes among the longma, and change that drastic will mean opposition. Having been accustomed to one way of life for so long, it would be difficult to see or imagine anything else. We’ll just need to explain it in such a way that it doesn’t scare or shy them away from wanting to give it a shot.”

“It’s definitely something worth thinking about. Thank you, elders, for your perspectives. I hope that would be a convincing start for the elders back home.”

"As an elder, it is my duty and joy, to inform and teach those who seeks knowledge. I hope that things will proceed well for you, and that you understand caution. They might be willing to listen in time. In some ways, I can imagine they might already, if they allow Omen to wander their town. But try not to push too much at them at once. Yet stand ready if danger comes, to make use of all that you have.

It is a balancing act to thread, yet I wish you good tides, as you do so."

"Hmm, speaking of Omen, you are allowed to walk around their town, yes?"

"I am. They say I helped with something, but I do not remember.

Bad one attacked my friends though, and wanted me to tell him things. I have been told by Master Discord, not to lie, but I do not have to answer."

"I would agree with that, yes. It is simply that if they allow you, perhaps you can be used not just as an example that outsiders can be helpful, but perhaps also as the link to the outside. Use her to cautiously make connections, or bring them something of the outside to inspect and evaluate.

Do not bring them something uninvited. Unless it is custom to bring a gift to your elders, when approaching them, I believe it might be unwise."

That would come down to the knowledge that Sen and Lin had. Omen could well take a gift with her. Something that would show respect towards the elders, but she shouldn't do so, if it weren't needed. It might be seen as condescending, or as if she were just trying to win them over with shiny things. Not an ideal situation.

As for her usefulness in acting as a good example, of the outside world, it would depend on how the meeting went. The larger pool of elders would have to accept her presence, for her to be of use, but it could become critical. They best have trained her before the meeting, in how to behave herself, lest she'd cause some rather serious harm to their prospect of broadening the longma's horizons.

On 2024-04-06 at 5:26 PM, EQ_Theta said:

It was true that time would be running short, even more so with the siblings expected to be present back home when they were about to travel. Two days wasn’t a long time, depending on how one looked at it, and having to make the trek from the village would take time. Sen would need to place some hope into Lin and Omen, as the task ahead still felt daunting. For now, the matter with the elders would be put on hold for something else the longma were given.”

“We’ll take care of this scroll, elder. Reading it would not be a problem... unless there are some ‘big’ words in it. That part might cause some minor issues, but I doubt it will cause setbacks. I admit I am interested in what it says and how it can improve my meditations.” 

"I assure you that it is perfectly legible. I save the big words for my intermediate classes."

The fox would return soon after, it's long tail wrapped around a scroll the length of Sen's arm. It were closed with a silk ribbon, and the paper seemed wrapped around polished bone. Though if they looked closely, they would see it were wood. There were some pale variants in the area, that they liked to use for this sort, as it were long lasting, and did not damage the paper.

The fox would run over to the elder, who'd nuzzle it a little behind the ear, before it dissipated, and she handed the scroll over to Sen.

"This should be of some help, I would hope. If you get through it, and believe yourself ready, you can return and receive one for more advanced techniques. The sort that are often used, to teach dream walking, or wandering in minds.

Now before you leave, Elder Sohe wished to see if perhaps either of you, had it in you to listen to the voice of the elements. Have you a little more time to spare, before you must depart? It shall take no more than ten minutes, I would think."

They likely still had plenty of time. It were still over a day (OOC: far as I remember) until the meting with the elders, yet the night would not be completely peaceful. When the sun set in Equestria, it would be time for the golems to be inhabited, which they had been invited to attend. And who knew? Perhaps the voices of old, could provide some guidance of their own. They might even know of their progenitors, if they were told what information they did have now.

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

 

@Lawyer Slip

Ziggy would get closer, and boop him on his forehead with the tip of her right wing, and pull her tongue slightly at him, in a silly manner..

"Easy there, friend. I am not gonna judge you. Especially not for meeting a draconequui. This town has one, with Discord. And then there's the new one in the forest. I haven't met her yet, but I hear she likes to play games.

Then there's Fright, whom I heard got through town recently. Of course when I wasn't here, which is a shame. I heard she were scary looking, but very nice. And I met Gluttony once. The instructor said that it was part of his medical training too, to see what happened with all the medical waste. I got to see her eat an actual ton of stuff, along with some barrels of toxic waste, and a large, bent piece of railing. You wouldn't believe the sort of things she can just chomp down, nor how fast. It was kinda hard to look away from honestly.

Don't you worry about having a draconequui friend here, if that's what you wanted to say. Discord's seen as good, and he's one of the really important, big ones. Your friend's probably okay here too. I'll give them a hug if I see them, just to prove it, hehe.

And Fah'lina's kin is... How was it written down again... Right, Discordian Knight Squirrels, were some of the animals that got changed back when Discord ruled Equestria. Then they bred and multiplied a lot, and when Discord was gone, they were some of the only creatures with too much chaos in them, to get back to normal. Too many generations of it being ingrained and stuff, though they did lose some things, the book said. Then they lived near where Canterlot were, and then one day, they were just gone, and nopony saw them since. Dunno where they went, but seems like some of them are around now.

Like I said, you'll meet her later. She'll be back for snacks sooner or later. But I have time now, so sure! We can go see your friend, hehe. Does he likes hugs? Actually, don't answer that. It'll be a surprise."

She were getting hyped up, and ready for action. So soon as her new friend here were ready to go, she'd be wandering right next to him, tapping along in sheer joy, and humming a little tune. Really looked as if she hadn't a care in this world.

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

 

@Catpone Cerberus

She couldn't help but being slightly disappointed in what she were told. She had hoped that there would be more concrete things to work with, that furthermore were not war related, but alas, it seemed that hope were for naught. Still, the data might still prove to hold some sort of information, that could be of assistance to her.

"I would be lying if I said I hadn't hoped for another answer, but there might still be data that would be helpful to my research. I will be more than happy to let you see why I am looking for such information later, but to borrow your reasoning, this isn't the place for it.

And my condolences for your world being - for the lack of a better term - torn asunder. I do not think it sounds like a peaceful place, yet losing your whole world still seem substantially horrendous."

Magma would finish what she had ordered before, and pulled out some bits from her box to cover the cost. She were not a thief, and would pay what she got. Besides, what she had ordered were not expensive. It weren't as if she had gotten a large meal. That would be pointless for her, at this current point in time.

"Perhaps we have something to gain from accompanying one another for a time? Among other things, I know the codes to unlock the research at Center Zero. Even retrieved, there should be a backup stashed in the Metaphysical Laboratory. My former boss showed it to me, as part of the protocols set in place, if an emergency happened. There'd be a copy both there, and at the Boom Workshop. The latter is easier to get, so I can imagine the survivor took that one. Doubly so if it is a Boom that survived. They are surprisingly tenacious, like cockroaches."

It sounded as if there were more that they could discuss, but she got the feeling that he were signaling too, that they best take this elsewhere. Both to talk more technical terms, and to get on with other things. Who knew? Perhaps she could be of some assistance. He might come from a Equestria, but if it were not this one, the chances were slim that he knew how everything worked. That were something that she did have the power to assist with. As well as the time.

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

 

@Catpone Cerberus

The deer would not answer, but instead look at the door that had been sealed. If she looked back, she'd find that the darkness covering it, would begin to vanish. The smoke seemingly getting sucked out from behind, or dragged off in a vacuum of sorts.

The leader and the priestess alike, began moving backwards as they saw this, and the latter would poke her staff into a stone slab they would eventually stand on, that would slowly start to rise into the air, with them on it. A magical elevator, as it were.

Before they were far up though, the door would open, and the deer she had run into outside, would go inside, and look up towards them. Something that made the mummified, less alive looking leader of these undead, point towards him.

"That is it."

They would soon enough be out of sight proper, and at a higher point in the temple, leaving the two of them with this undead, that would look at them both with curious, darkened eyes.

"Hey, I remember that one. He were out at the door. That's the one that got loose?"

He didn't seem impressive, but... Apparently this were the one they had to lead into the basement? Pretty weird, but alright. They could likely do that.

"Urgh, freaking stomach pain... I hate curses."

She'd stagger forth a bit, grinding her teeth. She had been giving a nasty curse here, and she could tell it. Something they'd been told had a kill switch. Literally. If they tried to leave, without this one getting trapped in, they'd be royally boned. Again, quite literally. It sounded like they'd be de-fleshed.

"Alright you, you wanna rumble, or are we gonna get you to downtown without any fuss?"

The deer looked at her, and tilted its head at her. He didn't seem to know what she meant.

"...Can you even understand me?"

The deer would slowly nod, whilst a sound would come from further behind, from down the hallways. Sounded like something had broken. Perhaps a piece of the ceiling had fallen down, considering the loud noise.

"Okay. Let's try again: Do you want to go to the basement?"

This time, the deer would shake. It did not seem to be what he had in mind.

"Why can't things ever be easy, y'know?

Are you okay, Ruby? I swear, we'll get out of this. Just have to sorta... Come up with a plan. Have to get this one down, to get the curse out of us."

The deer would now turn towards Ruby, looking at her. Then he'd take slow steps in her direction, looking like he wanted to do something, since his already slit pupils, seemed to narrow further. A sign he were focusing on her, for some unknown reason. Y'know, in case him trying to walk to her, weren't enough of a sign.

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

 

@Catpone Cerberus

The doctor would hum a song as she inspected the tail proper. Something that seemed to have some heavy base, and beat, as she were also tapping with her right back leg.

"Looks just about perfect, miss. Clean as a whistle, and no scratches. This shouldn't take more than a few moments then."

She'd swivel around, and pull a small box, and a tube out of a nearby drawer. Opening the box, would reveal the prosthetic. Soft, sterile interior, made to fit with a rubbery construction, for when it were to be put on. And the color would almost match the rest of her tail. She had done hers to get it through what color, but it had gone off by a few shades. Wasn't massive, but if you were looking, you'd see the difference. Beyond that, it would look as if it were simply part of her regular tail. That were the point of a good prosthetic after all.

She'd ask Sheska to sit still, then use the tube of gel to apply a little to her tail, while she carefully put the tip on her tail. It would slip on when she were done, and stay there, with the gel underneath helping to have it set there, and keep it clean, just in case a speck of dust or something had snuck in.

"There we go. As good as new. Kinda. I know the color is a bit off, but they missed it by a teensy bit.

Anyway, it shouldn't come off with any ease, but if it does, or you feel something slide under there, just clean it, and then reapply this gel. It helps keep it clean from any airborne stuff that might try and sneak in otherwise."

She'd hand the tube to Sheska, with a warm smile on her face.

"If you run out, it is in every pharmacy I know of at least, and it isn't overly expensive. Still, I think this should last you for a fair bit of time.

So, with that sorted- What's your plans now? You're new in town, right? Are you in the tent city, that got set up after the buildings got damaged from the big attack? Or are you in that new section of town, like the silver-maned twins? Ooor I guess you could just be going through town, and stick at the inn, until you wander off in a few days.

It's alright that I ask, right? I don't wanna be noisy, I'm just curious."

Curious and a teensy bit bored, but they didn't need to hear that last part. It did fine being in her own head.

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

 

@Evil Pink One

"Just make sure to take care of yourself. Your marefriend got very sad the last time, and I'm sure she'd prefer it be a rarity, rather than a regular occurrence.

Now then, Lieutenant Foxglove? Might we have some words in private?"

The guard were baffled by the sudden request by the rather famous doctor, but she'd nod after a few seconds, and pushed her glasses further up her face again.

"Me? I... O-Off course, Doctor Toxina. It would be my honor."

The two of them would do their own bows, and then begin to depart. Though they would manage to overhear Shark's comment about the classes, which did at least make the older doctor smirk a little.

"Claaaaa-sss. Class... Big class is fish? Are mate taking Shark to good hunt lake?"

She were confusing it with him speaking of a high class fish right now, which did sound tasty. Even though she had the words for several things in her mind, and knew what they meant, it wasn't everything that were in there, or explained very well. Class might as well mean weight class, or as she had thought, a higher class of fishy than she were used to. It wasn't needed though. Any fishy, were a good fishy to eat.

Oh well, it didn't matter, right? He had some idea what they should do, and he were safe and happy again, so she were thrilled. Him being okay, were all she had ever hoped for, so now things could get nice again. Hopefully no more bad things would come into town, trying to hurt her mate.

FOr now, she'd go and nuzzle the sides of his face, until he were ready to leave. When he were, she'd follow, oblivious as to what they were actually about to do: Actual schoolwork.

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@Blitz Boom

Unfortunately, the Draconicuos I know is anything but a friend. Y'know how Draconici represent different things, like how Discord represents Chaos and how I assume Gluttony's name is what she represents? Well, this Draconicuos is not my friend. His name is Cataclysmor, and he represents Armageddon and seeks to cause it everywhere. He's a big meanie who definitely can't be trusted, and that's all I can say without going into too much detail. However, if you tried to hig him, he would probably try to kill you. He also knows Discord, and wants to, and I quote "snap his stupidly long traitorous neck." Cataclysmor is nopony's friend.

Anyways, glad to hear you want to meet Rich, I'm sure you two would also get along splendidly! 

THANK THE VOID IT'S OVER. She can talk to Rich for a little bit, and then you'll be able to regather your thoughts, and have a more confident social attitude.

I'll show you to the house now.

And so, off they went to the house. And in no time at all, they had arrived. It was a small little house, and it looked similar to the ones in Ponyville, but a little different. The roof was made of reddish shingles, with the house itself being made of oak wood. A single observation deck stood outside of one of the windows on the right side of the house, and on the left, a secret hatch was being propped open by a stick.

Slipstream beckoned Ziggy inside. The inside of the house looked very similar to Fluttershy's cottage, minus the large amount of animals and cages. In the kitchen, stood an Alicorn, about the same size as Slipstream, he was bright yellow, with a teal mane, and big green eyes. His cutie mark was a treasure chest with gold and green hearts inside. He was cooking something on the stove, then turned and saw that Slipstream had brought a guest.

Oh! Hello there my lady, my name is Crawford. Rich, Crawford. You can call my Rich, but don't call me Big Cash Monies, it's a long story. Anyways, please feel free to have a seat, I'll get you something to drink, what would you like.

Compared to Slipstream's aura of anxiety and kindness, Rich had one of confidence, safety, and a hint of death-defying adventure. If Ziggy could tell that is.

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@Blitz Boom

On 2024-04-09 at 7:42 AM, Blitz Boom said:

 

"With all respect I believe they deserve, your elders sounds arrogant and paranoid. Seeing someone stepping up to take a leader role, when one were needed, should be celebrated. It should not be viewed as one who might threaten their power. To me, that is not the views of a just leader, but one worried that a new one has risen, that were not vetted to think as them.

Still, I could be wrong, and they are simply overly cautious, because they fear he is too inexperienced to lead. Were I to offer a suggestion, I would tell Elder Ghilan that he might want to question that if they think he lacks experience, why then not offer him their wisdom. He already holds the mantle of a leader. If knowledge is what he lacks, then that can be offered to him. That is what we do, when one of our younger ones have needed to step up, and lead. Encouraging one who knows that they must be there for their kin, and granting them the wisdom and support to do so, will make for a memorable leader.""

"I would concur that, Elder Sohe, but I would strongly advice too, that those words be said by Ghilan himself, and not you. He must show initiative, humility, and respect, if he is to be taken serious by them. Having others speak for him, would make him seem unable to handle even the most basic of leadership tasks on his own.

Still, they might not be willing to offer him guidance. If that occurs, consider your options. An outsiders perspective, might do him good."

“I wouldn’t claim to know what the elders think of the situation, only what Elder Ghilan says about the matter. From what I gathered, you and our elders share their views of Ghilan being inexperienced, and Ghilan says as much about himself despite receiving advice from our village’s council. At times, it is difficult to know what the elders from the other villages are like, especially because we don’t meet them; they call us, and many, if not all, longma believe that to be a poor sign of things to come.” 

“Elder Ghilan seems to be a lot more assertive of himself nowadays, taking charge of matters as if he knew of them more clearly. It wouldn’t hurt to let him know about how he can convince the other elders to take a chance on him. He may be leading our village, but he is actively seeking guidance and new perspectives, so I have confidence in him. 

“If he were here right now, he would love to speak and learn from you, elders. It wouldn’t be the first time for him, after all.”

Sen smiled at the thought, recalling a previous meeting between Ghilan and Rosa. The two hit it off, with the longma elder eager to learn what he can about the outside world. He may be young, but those times spent growing up in a difficult, seemingly oppressive village arising from another’s tragedy were his catalyst. Had times been different, perhaps he wouldn’t have needed to abandon his desire to become a village hunter… Alas, this has become the course of his life, and he would make the most of it, something Sen could sympathize with given his own situation. 

For the moment, the siblings would turn their focus to the topic of conversation concerning their personal stake in the coming meeting. Having the positivity and hope from Elder Sohe was refreshing and reassuring. Though there was always the chance of things going sour, they hoped things wouldn’t come to that. Sadly, the threat of the unknown entity, or a larger group of them, hung over the longma, and no one knew just when that would come for them. It only made matters more complicated, but they’ll have to take it on as it comes. They had no choice now, and it was only a matter of time. The question now will be how to approach it because even Elder Ghilan would need to know… 

On 2024-04-09 at 7:42 AM, Blitz Boom said:

"I would agree with that, yes. It is simply that if they allow you, perhaps you can be used not just as an example that outsiders can be helpful, but perhaps also as the link to the outside. Use her to cautiously make connections, or bring them something of the outside to inspect and evaluate.

Do not bring them something uninvited. Unless it is custom to bring a gift to your elders, when approaching them, I believe it might be unwise."

That said, the more Sen and Lin thought about how the meeting would go, the more they would have to ensure Omen’s safety. Their village may be willing to have her present because of the goodwill she earned after the mess with Solasan, but the same cannot be said for other villages or the meeting itself. Then again, a cautious approach with Omen becoming a link to the outside may already be in place, as the seeds have been planted not too long ago.

“We’ll be cautious, though Omen may already have some experience with that. A young woodworker in our village got to see and meet a pony through her, and that happened without any problems. Maybe we lucked out that time, but that gave us a bit of hope that maybe we could show the longma that we don’t have to be so isolated.”

“That woodworker was nervous, but he is a nice fellow all things considered. If other longma were a little like him, then maybe they could see giving big changes a chance.” 

On 2024-04-09 at 7:42 AM, Blitz Boom said:

"This should be of some help, I would hope. If you get through it, and believe yourself ready, you can return and receive one for more advanced techniques. The sort that are often used, to teach dream walking, or wandering in minds.

Now before you leave, Elder Sohe wished to see if perhaps either of you, had it in you to listen to the voice of the elements. Have you a little more time to spare, before you must depart? It shall take no more than ten minutes, I would think."

They likely still had plenty of time. It were still over a day (OOC: far as I remember) until the meting with the elders, yet the night would not be completely peaceful. When the sun set in Equestria, it would be time for the golems to be inhabited, which they had been invited to attend. And who knew? Perhaps the voices of old, could provide some guidance of their own. They might even know of their progenitors, if they were told what information they did have now.

Elder Zhao returned with a scroll, and it was an unusually large one to boot. It definitely caught Sen off-guard, but it was something he was interested in reading. He had a look at the scroll itself, then wondered how he was going to put it away without creasing the parchment. He may not have a saddle bag with him, but he’d rather be extra careful with it. If he could improve his meditations, that would already be a large benefit for him, but the advanced techniques sounded pretty interesting…

“Thank you. I’ll be careful with the scroll. Although I’d like to head back to the village to let Elder Ghilan know of what’s going on, maybe it wouldn’t hurt to stay for a while longer. If Lin needs a little more time to rest, then I will stay until she is ready.”

“I think there’s still time before we need to go, and you could always just ask Omen to go with you back to the village. But yes, Elder Zhao, we can stay so Elder Sohe can see if we can uh… ‘listen to the voice of the elements,’ as you say.”

Lin would need some time to regain her bearings, though she wouldn’t want to overstay her welcome. A few moments to regain some key memories and wait things out for a little while for the throbbing in her head to subside would be her goal. The confusion was already making way to clarity, but the feeling of lightheadedness mixed with the faint sight of things spinning was still apparent, much as she’d tried to ignore it. 

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@EQ_Theta

On 2024-04-10 at 4:49 PM, EQ_Theta said:

“I wouldn’t claim to know what the elders think of the situation, only what Elder Ghilan says about the matter. From what I gathered, you and our elders share their views of Ghilan being inexperienced, and Ghilan says as much about himself despite receiving advice from our village’s council. At times, it is difficult to know what the elders from the other villages are like, especially because we don’t meet them; they call us, and many, if not all, longma believe that to be a poor sign of things to come.” 

“Elder Ghilan seems to be a lot more assertive of himself nowadays, taking charge of matters as if he knew of them more clearly. It wouldn’t hurt to let him know about how he can convince the other elders to take a chance on him. He may be leading our village, but he is actively seeking guidance and new perspectives, so I have confidence in him. 

“If he were here right now, he would love to speak and learn from you, elders. It wouldn’t be the first time for him, after all.”

"Being willing to listen, is the first step towards being enlightened. If your elder looks for knowledge, and aren't afraid of new inputs, it leaves him able to listen, and embrace things that he could not, were he to simply leave his interests, at the leisure of your other elders. Still, their wisdom should not be ignored. It is yet important, as it will be the basis for how to lead your own kin. Even if it must evolve, for you to face the broader world around you.

If he means to listen, and he remains steadfast in that, no matter the outcome of your meeting, perhaps the day will then come, when we can offer him some outsiders perspectives to ponder. I should find it fairly interesting."

"Education as well, for both us, and him. You two are open-minded, but you are not in the position of leaders right now. His perspective on things, will be different than your own."

It were hard to say if it ever did become a thing that would come to pass, of course. Sure they both had an interest in it, and as elders of their own, isolated towns, they could meet the society of the longma, and their elders, on more common ground, than a pony, or Discord could.

They too appreciated the comfort and joy of tradition, even if they approached it differently than the longma, but it were one thing that one could hope would change for them, now that members of theirs, began to see and to an extend, embrace outside perspectives.

That said, they did not go into this, with the aim of changing their whole culture. Zhao and Sohe had their ideas of how things could improve, and they would offer them freely, but it would in the end, be a choice for the longma to take. It were their home, and their culture, after all. What happened to it, and how it evolved, should be their decision, in the end. Elders such as Sohe and Zhao, would offer perspective, and suggestions. Guidance if there were questions even, but they were not invaders, nor zealots. They had no interest in removing what it meant to be longma. It would be hypocritical do ever do such a thing, when they would fight fiercely for their own culture and heritage.

On 2024-04-10 at 4:49 PM, EQ_Theta said:

“We’ll be cautious, though Omen may already have some experience with that. A young woodworker in our village got to see and meet a pony through her, and that happened without any problems. Maybe we lucked out that time, but that gave us a bit of hope that maybe we could show the longma that we don’t have to be so isolated.”

“That woodworker was nervous, but he is a nice fellow all things considered. If other longma were a little like him, then maybe they could see giving big changes a chance.”

"He showed foals some of his carvings. I think they liked it. The bad one came after that. I do not think he wanted the other one to speak with Sen or Lin. Or maybe it was me, since he asked me questions? I do not know."

"There will always be those, who oppose progress. What is important is as they say, that the woodworker were receptive to meeting others. The younger generation are often easier to convince of things maybe not being bad, simply because they are not part of what they are used to. Convincing the older generation will be challenging. But this is a hurdle you will face soon enough."

The elders were but the first example of this. There were older, regular citizens, that were likely not as keen on changes either. It would go against everything they had known, and been taught were good. It wouldn't be easy to make them think that introducing a new way of handling things, would be a good way forward. Yet they would have to convince them too eventually, to proceed as smoothly as possible. Or wait for them to perish, but that would take quite a bit longer. Best to try and aim for convincing at least a reasonable portion of them.

On 2024-04-10 at 4:49 PM, EQ_Theta said:

“Thank you. I’ll be careful with the scroll. Although I’d like to head back to the village to let Elder Ghilan know of what’s going on, maybe it wouldn’t hurt to stay for a while longer. If Lin needs a little more time to rest, then I will stay until she is ready.”

“I think there’s still time before we need to go, and you could always just ask Omen to go with you back to the village. But yes, Elder Zhao, we can stay so Elder Sohe can see if we can uh… ‘listen to the voice of the elements,’ as you say.”

"She seems at sound mind, so I would think her okay to travel. Just be calm easy Lin, if you begin to wobble, or feel queasy. It is just an after effect that will pass, if it haven't already."

The elders would rise up, to begin the trip towards the room, that they wished for them to visit. It wouldn't be far from here. Up one bridge, then a small walk for a few minutes more, with nature blooming around them, and spirits yet looking at them curiously. Nothing as large as River, nor any as bold, but they did definitely bite notice in the strange visitors. It wasn't normal for non-kitsune to visit town. Much less be wandering with the elders. It were something that drew the attention of many of these curious little nature spirits, up until they finally stood at the door Sohe wanted them to be at. A fairly sized door, seemingly made out of wood, with various flowers and vegetation growing over it, to the point where you couldn't simply open it up.

Sohe however, would wander closer, and put her paw on the door. Slowly, the vegetation began to move, revealing that there were in fact, not a door. The whole entrance were just overgrown with thick vegetation, that you would have to either have move, or chop through. The latter being an option that would definitely not endear you to the spirits, nor the elders. It would be seen as incredibly rude, as this were a room were one were meant to ask permission to enter, as it were a sacred spot for spirits and kitsune alike.

"If you would please, come on in."

The room were modest in appearance. The inside of a globe in construction, the various vegetation lining the walls would make it somewhat uneven, but there were still a sense of harmony in the way things were set up, if they bit notice in it. The flowers, vines, moss, etc. had a natural harmony to them, that made them be set just as they should be, in the eyes of the spirits that flowed around the walls.

In the middle, would be a clear spot. Roots would go to the edge of it, but the circle, around a meter in diameter, were simple planks of wood, inscribed in a myriad of tiny symbols. The water flowed freely through this place, pouring in a stream through the top, and exiting down the bottom, yet on this middle piece, it would not touch. Rather the water would flow to the sides, as if over an invisible globe, and gathering below the platform again, in one, steady stream. It would almost seem as if a small igloo were present on the middle platform, made out of naught but air.

There were sometimes a pillow on the seating platform too, but it were sometimes tossed around by the spirits for fun, though as they saw Elder Sohe had arrived, a few clear spirits with sprouts on their heads, would dive into a nearby plant, and seemingly possesses the vine to grab the pillow, and gently put it in place. The elder would bow her neck before the vine in kind, before it retracted.

"I thank you, friends. Yet today it is not I, who come to listen. I bring guests, whom I hoped you might speak to, and see if they can hear?"

She seemed to listen for something, and after a half minute or so, would smile a little wider, and bow her head once more.

"Your willingness, is much appreciated. We shall see if it bears fruit."

Only then, would she turn towards the others, whilst behind her, fluttering spirits would begin to pop their heads out, curiously watching the newcomers, that were to be tested.

"I would ask you all to try, yet one at a time, please. Sen first, then Lin. Omen, I hope you will be willing to try too? I am somewhat curious, what they will think about you."

"Okay."

"Thank you. Now Sen, if you would please? Just sit in the middle, close your eyes, and focus your ears on listening. If you can hear a voice speaking to you, be not afraid of it. Try and listen, and when the waters part again, tell me if you heard something."

He would get three minutes to listen, after starting. And once he were in position, the water would close around the globe. If he could hear the voices, one or more would end up being heard by him, over the sound of rushing water. How many voices were discernable, would be important.

"Uuuh, this one has scales."

"I bet he can't hear a thing."

"I like your tail."

"Never seen someone like you before."

"Sohe likes him. Let's be nice."

"Awh, but it would be so fun to poke him."

Just because this were a sacred place, where one could attune with the spirits, if you had the gift, did not mean the spirits were overly serious about things. Often, the more playful would come out to do these tests, where the more serious were waiting to see if it were worth their time first.

If Sen could hear any of the voices, he could respond to it, or them. If not, it would just sound like water, insects buzzing, wind blowing softly through, and rustling of leaves. Things such as that.

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

 

@Lawyer Slip

On 2024-04-09 at 2:00 AM, Lawyer Slip said:

Unfortunately, the Draconicuos I know is anything but a friend. Y'know how Draconici represent different things, like how Discord represents Chaos and how I assume Gluttony's name is what she represents? Well, this Draconicuos is not my friend. His name is Cataclysmor, and he represents Armageddon and seeks to cause it everywhere. He's a big meanie who definitely can't be trusted, and that's all I can say without going into too much detail. However, if you tried to hig him, he would probably try to kill you. He also knows Discord, and wants to, and I quote "snap his stupidly long traitorous neck." Cataclysmor is nopony's friend.

Anyways, glad to hear you want to meet Rich, I'm sure you two would also get along splendidly! 

"Oooh, so one of those who wanna break the world, huh? I can't imagine most draconequui, likes that sorta member, but there's bad seeds in ever race, right? Just sometimes, those bad seeds can destroy the world. A bit spooky, but the world still seems to be here, so... No need to worry about it right now, heh.

A shame he'd try and kill if he got a hug. He really sounds like he needs some friends. And a lesson in why it's wrong to hate others, just because they're not like you. Hopefully somepony will give him that someday. Like Gluttony had. That's what I were told anyway, that she were helped by a pony, and then she helped Gluttony and Avarice to be better too. That's why Gluttony is in that enormous landfill. An endless feast of things to eat, and she gobbles all sorts in her. It really helps keeping Equestria cleaner.

But enough about ornery sorts, and massive maws. Let's go meet your friend!"

Sounded like a gnarly, dangerous one, that Cataclysmor fellow. Best to avoid him, if she heard he were anywhere, and let stronger beings handle that. She still had way too many things to hug in this world, to be killed by a big ol' grump.

On 2024-04-09 at 2:00 AM, Lawyer Slip said:

Oh! Hello there my lady, my name is Crawford. Rich, Crawford. You can call my Rich, but don't call me Big Cash Monies, it's a long story. Anyways, please feel free to have a seat, I'll get you something to drink, what would you like.

Compared to Slipstream's aura of anxiety and kindness, Rich had one of confidence, safety, and a hint of death-defying adventure. If Ziggy could tell that is.

Ziggy clasped her front hooves on both sides of her face, which had a huge, open-mouth smile on it, with eyes nearly glittering in pure joy.

""*gasp* Look at how tiny he is! Oh my Celestia, he's adorable!"

Maybe not the smartest first words, but she were used to thinking alicorns were some of the few ponies, going over her head. This one were Twilight sized, more or less.

"Hello, Rich! I'm Ziggy. I met your friend out here in town, and then he said he had an alicorn friend, and I just had to see, and there you are! I kept hearing all male alicorns were feral, but you're not! Obviously, duh. But like, you're not one of those who get hit by the random *BAM!* then alicorn, and go coo coo. And you're Twilight sized! That's so cute. Are you the same age as her? Or is it like, how long you have been an alicorn that matters?"

In her happy words, spoken with the enthusiasm of a sugar addict, at the top of their high, she would be touching on the phenomenon that caused what were dubbed "Feral Alicorns" in Equestria. Nopony knew why it happened, but sometimes, it seemed just randomly, a pony would be struck by strange magic, and undergo alicornification. The ordeal were taxing both mentally and physically, so most who had it happen to them, went mad in the process, and had to be... Well, put down, cruel as it sounded.

Since alicorns done the proper way, were usually just females, it added the tale that male alicorns were just not meant to be. Something about them meant they just couldn't handle it, though more professional ones, didn't participate in the gossip version, as they knew the random, unfiltered process could hit mares too.

It were an odd phenomenon, that didn't have a source, or origin. It only happened in Equestria, according to reports, and it were impossible to track, since as soon as one had been through it, there were nothing to trace in the area, and there didn't seem to be anything happening there afterwards either. It were as if the country just sometimes *burped* special magic out, and sometimes, an unfortunate soul got caught in it.

This one seemed sane though, so he might have bucked the trend, or been alicornified the right way. You'd think the princess would have announced that though. *gasp* Unless he were not Equestrian? He might come from somewhere else, like Saddle Arabia. They had their princess too! And princess Arabian Nights were supposedly extremely beautiful. Ziggy hoped to see some day, and figure out if the stories were true.

"Oh! And uh... Water, please. Sorry for being hyper, but I have a ton of energy, and this is the sort of exciting thing that just makes me all psyched up! But... Ngggh.... No, not... Must. Hug.... But not in the... Kitchen..."

She strained against herself, as her instincts were now telling her to rush in and hug, but since he stood over a stove, her logic said no. A logic reinforced by her mother, using her stern voice, so she knew that it were serious. SHe might need a couple of minutes here to just... Get this through her system.

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@Blitz Boom

"If you want to hug me, don't hesitate by any means, I'm technically fireproof. And if you're also wondering why I'm mentally sane and haven't been announced by the princesses, it's because I'm not from around here. And no, I'm not from Saddle Arabia either." 

Rich took a deep breath. After he said this, ponies usually started running and screaming in the opposite direction, but he had faith in Ziggy, and honestly liked her as well.

"I don't know if you've heard that Twilight went to a different world at all, where everyone walks on two legs, but she did. Those beings are called humans, and while it may surprise you to hear this, I'm one of them."

"See, back on my world, a particle accelerator exploded, which gave me the ability to transform into a golem made of gold. I made the wrong choice, and decided to use those powers for evil, and became a super villain known as Gold Golem. But eventually, being a villain started to loose its luster, and it became so depressing, that I couldn't stop just asking "what am I doing?" So I returned my stolen goods and started walking. Eventually, I stumbled on a portal to Equestria, and I was an Alicorn somehow. I tried to make friends with people, but ended up just getting hunted for sport." 

"Then I came to Ponyville, and the ponies here were actually nice. I decided to stay, but I begged that they keep my identity a secret, as I'm not sure how Twilight or the other princesses would react to a male alicorn in Equestria, who was originally a human/golem supervillain."

"Then one day, I find Slipstream hiding in an alleyway, and decide to help him make some friends. That's how we ended up living together. But if you know Twilight, or Celestia, or any if the others, please don't let them know about me. They'd probably send me back to where I came from. I really don't wanna go back to the human world. They might punish me worse than anypony here could."

"Slipstream, if you want you can go out back to the pond, I'd like to chat with Ziggy."

"You got it!"

THANK YOU SO MUCH

Rich brought Ziggy her glass of water, and as she drank it, and after Slipstream closed the door, he said what he knew she was thinking. He could read minds after all. He tried not to, but they were like open books just waiting to be read. He did respect privacy though, and never peeked too far into anyone's past. But, after staring at Ziggy while she drank the water, he finally said:

"You're worried about him too, huh?"

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On 2024-04-09 at 7:42 AM, Blitz Boom said:

@EQ_Theta

"With all respect I believe they deserve, your elders sounds arrogant and paranoid. Seeing someone stepping up to take a leader role, when one were needed, should be celebrated. It should not be viewed as one who might threaten their power. To me, that is not the views of a just leader, but one worried that a new one has risen, that were not vetted to think as them.

Still, I could be wrong, and they are simply overly cautious, because they fear he is too inexperienced to lead. Were I to offer a suggestion, I would tell Elder Ghilan that he might want to question that if they think he lacks experience, why then not offer him their wisdom. He already holds the mantle of a leader. If knowledge is what he lacks, then that can be offered to him. That is what we do, when one of our younger ones have needed to step up, and lead. Encouraging one who knows that they must be there for their kin, and granting them the wisdom and support to do so, will make for a memorable leader.""

"I would concur that, Elder Sohe, but I would strongly advice too, that those words be said by Ghilan himself, and not you. He must show initiative, humility, and respect, if he is to be taken serious by them. Having others speak for him, would make him seem unable to handle even the most basic of leadership tasks on his own.

Still, they might not be willing to offer him guidance. If that occurs, consider your options. An outsiders perspective, might do him good."

She did not directly state that they might be willing to offer him some guidance, but it were implied, and intended. They might not stand over the same kind of people, yet they were leaders all the same, with some tangible common-ground. There were likely things that they could teach him, if others did not. Even if they had to go and see him, which should not pose a great threat, if it came to that. Kitsune were masters of illusions. A race not partaking in magic, would be hard pressed to see through the deception.

"As an elder, it is my duty and joy, to inform and teach those who seeks knowledge. I hope that things will proceed well for you, and that you understand caution. They might be willing to listen in time. In some ways, I can imagine they might already, if they allow Omen to wander their town. But try not to push too much at them at once. Yet stand ready if danger comes, to make use of all that you have.

It is a balancing act to thread, yet I wish you good tides, as you do so."

"Hmm, speaking of Omen, you are allowed to walk around their town, yes?"

"I am. They say I helped with something, but I do not remember.

Bad one attacked my friends though, and wanted me to tell him things. I have been told by Master Discord, not to lie, but I do not have to answer."

"I would agree with that, yes. It is simply that if they allow you, perhaps you can be used not just as an example that outsiders can be helpful, but perhaps also as the link to the outside. Use her to cautiously make connections, or bring them something of the outside to inspect and evaluate.

Do not bring them something uninvited. Unless it is custom to bring a gift to your elders, when approaching them, I believe it might be unwise."

That would come down to the knowledge that Sen and Lin had. Omen could well take a gift with her. Something that would show respect towards the elders, but she shouldn't do so, if it weren't needed. It might be seen as condescending, or as if she were just trying to win them over with shiny things. Not an ideal situation.

As for her usefulness in acting as a good example, of the outside world, it would depend on how the meeting went. The larger pool of elders would have to accept her presence, for her to be of use, but it could become critical. They best have trained her before the meeting, in how to behave herself, lest she'd cause some rather serious harm to their prospect of broadening the longma's horizons.

"I assure you that it is perfectly legible. I save the big words for my intermediate classes."

The fox would return soon after, it's long tail wrapped around a scroll the length of Sen's arm. It were closed with a silk ribbon, and the paper seemed wrapped around polished bone. Though if they looked closely, they would see it were wood. There were some pale variants in the area, that they liked to use for this sort, as it were long lasting, and did not damage the paper.

The fox would run over to the elder, who'd nuzzle it a little behind the ear, before it dissipated, and she handed the scroll over to Sen.

"This should be of some help, I would hope. If you get through it, and believe yourself ready, you can return and receive one for more advanced techniques. The sort that are often used, to teach dream walking, or wandering in minds.

Now before you leave, Elder Sohe wished to see if perhaps either of you, had it in you to listen to the voice of the elements. Have you a little more time to spare, before you must depart? It shall take no more than ten minutes, I would think."

They likely still had plenty of time. It were still over a day (OOC: far as I remember) until the meting with the elders, yet the night would not be completely peaceful. When the sun set in Equestria, it would be time for the golems to be inhabited, which they had been invited to attend. And who knew? Perhaps the voices of old, could provide some guidance of their own. They might even know of their progenitors, if they were told what information they did have now.

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

 

@Lawyer Slip

Ziggy would get closer, and boop him on his forehead with the tip of her right wing, and pull her tongue slightly at him, in a silly manner..

"Easy there, friend. I am not gonna judge you. Especially not for meeting a draconequui. This town has one, with Discord. And then there's the new one in the forest. I haven't met her yet, but I hear she likes to play games.

Then there's Fright, whom I heard got through town recently. Of course when I wasn't here, which is a shame. I heard she were scary looking, but very nice. And I met Gluttony once. The instructor said that it was part of his medical training too, to see what happened with all the medical waste. I got to see her eat an actual ton of stuff, along with some barrels of toxic waste, and a large, bent piece of railing. You wouldn't believe the sort of things she can just chomp down, nor how fast. It was kinda hard to look away from honestly.

Don't you worry about having a draconequui friend here, if that's what you wanted to say. Discord's seen as good, and he's one of the really important, big ones. Your friend's probably okay here too. I'll give them a hug if I see them, just to prove it, hehe.

And Fah'lina's kin is... How was it written down again... Right, Discordian Knight Squirrels, were some of the animals that got changed back when Discord ruled Equestria. Then they bred and multiplied a lot, and when Discord was gone, they were some of the only creatures with too much chaos in them, to get back to normal. Too many generations of it being ingrained and stuff, though they did lose some things, the book said. Then they lived near where Canterlot were, and then one day, they were just gone, and nopony saw them since. Dunno where they went, but seems like some of them are around now.

Like I said, you'll meet her later. She'll be back for snacks sooner or later. But I have time now, so sure! We can go see your friend, hehe. Does he likes hugs? Actually, don't answer that. It'll be a surprise."

She were getting hyped up, and ready for action. So soon as her new friend here were ready to go, she'd be wandering right next to him, tapping along in sheer joy, and humming a little tune. Really looked as if she hadn't a care in this world.

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

 

@Catpone Cerberus

She couldn't help but being slightly disappointed in what she were told. She had hoped that there would be more concrete things to work with, that furthermore were not war related, but alas, it seemed that hope were for naught. Still, the data might still prove to hold some sort of information, that could be of assistance to her.

"I would be lying if I said I hadn't hoped for another answer, but there might still be data that would be helpful to my research. I will be more than happy to let you see why I am looking for such information later, but to borrow your reasoning, this isn't the place for it.

And my condolences for your world being - for the lack of a better term - torn asunder. I do not think it sounds like a peaceful place, yet losing your whole world still seem substantially horrendous."

Magma would finish what she had ordered before, and pulled out some bits from her box to cover the cost. She were not a thief, and would pay what she got. Besides, what she had ordered were not expensive. It weren't as if she had gotten a large meal. That would be pointless for her, at this current point in time.

"Perhaps we have something to gain from accompanying one another for a time? Among other things, I know the codes to unlock the research at Center Zero. Even retrieved, there should be a backup stashed in the Metaphysical Laboratory. My former boss showed it to me, as part of the protocols set in place, if an emergency happened. There'd be a copy both there, and at the Boom Workshop. The latter is easier to get, so I can imagine the survivor took that one. Doubly so if it is a Boom that survived. They are surprisingly tenacious, like cockroaches."

It sounded as if there were more that they could discuss, but she got the feeling that he were signaling too, that they best take this elsewhere. Both to talk more technical terms, and to get on with other things. Who knew? Perhaps she could be of some assistance. He might come from a Equestria, but if it were not this one, the chances were slim that he knew how everything worked. That were something that she did have the power to assist with. As well as the time.

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

 

@Catpone Cerberus

The deer would not answer, but instead look at the door that had been sealed. If she looked back, she'd find that the darkness covering it, would begin to vanish. The smoke seemingly getting sucked out from behind, or dragged off in a vacuum of sorts.

The leader and the priestess alike, began moving backwards as they saw this, and the latter would poke her staff into a stone slab they would eventually stand on, that would slowly start to rise into the air, with them on it. A magical elevator, as it were.

Before they were far up though, the door would open, and the deer she had run into outside, would go inside, and look up towards them. Something that made the mummified, less alive looking leader of these undead, point towards him.

"That is it."

They would soon enough be out of sight proper, and at a higher point in the temple, leaving the two of them with this undead, that would look at them both with curious, darkened eyes.

"Hey, I remember that one. He were out at the door. That's the one that got loose?"

He didn't seem impressive, but... Apparently this were the one they had to lead into the basement? Pretty weird, but alright. They could likely do that.

"Urgh, freaking stomach pain... I hate curses."

She'd stagger forth a bit, grinding her teeth. She had been giving a nasty curse here, and she could tell it. Something they'd been told had a kill switch. Literally. If they tried to leave, without this one getting trapped in, they'd be royally boned. Again, quite literally. It sounded like they'd be de-fleshed.

"Alright you, you wanna rumble, or are we gonna get you to downtown without any fuss?"

The deer looked at her, and tilted its head at her. He didn't seem to know what she meant.

"...Can you even understand me?"

The deer would slowly nod, whilst a sound would come from further behind, from down the hallways. Sounded like something had broken. Perhaps a piece of the ceiling had fallen down, considering the loud noise.

"Okay. Let's try again: Do you want to go to the basement?"

This time, the deer would shake. It did not seem to be what he had in mind.

"Why can't things ever be easy, y'know?

Are you okay, Ruby? I swear, we'll get out of this. Just have to sorta... Come up with a plan. Have to get this one down, to get the curse out of us."

The deer would now turn towards Ruby, looking at her. Then he'd take slow steps in her direction, looking like he wanted to do something, since his already slit pupils, seemed to narrow further. A sign he were focusing on her, for some unknown reason. Y'know, in case him trying to walk to her, weren't enough of a sign.

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

 

@Catpone Cerberus

The doctor would hum a song as she inspected the tail proper. Something that seemed to have some heavy base, and beat, as she were also tapping with her right back leg.

"Looks just about perfect, miss. Clean as a whistle, and no scratches. This shouldn't take more than a few moments then."

She'd swivel around, and pull a small box, and a tube out of a nearby drawer. Opening the box, would reveal the prosthetic. Soft, sterile interior, made to fit with a rubbery construction, for when it were to be put on. And the color would almost match the rest of her tail. She had done hers to get it through what color, but it had gone off by a few shades. Wasn't massive, but if you were looking, you'd see the difference. Beyond that, it would look as if it were simply part of her regular tail. That were the point of a good prosthetic after all.

She'd ask Sheska to sit still, then use the tube of gel to apply a little to her tail, while she carefully put the tip on her tail. It would slip on when she were done, and stay there, with the gel underneath helping to have it set there, and keep it clean, just in case a speck of dust or something had snuck in.

"There we go. As good as new. Kinda. I know the color is a bit off, but they missed it by a teensy bit.

Anyway, it shouldn't come off with any ease, but if it does, or you feel something slide under there, just clean it, and then reapply this gel. It helps keep it clean from any airborne stuff that might try and sneak in otherwise."

She'd hand the tube to Sheska, with a warm smile on her face.

"If you run out, it is in every pharmacy I know of at least, and it isn't overly expensive. Still, I think this should last you for a fair bit of time.

So, with that sorted- What's your plans now? You're new in town, right? Are you in the tent city, that got set up after the buildings got damaged from the big attack? Or are you in that new section of town, like the silver-maned twins? Ooor I guess you could just be going through town, and stick at the inn, until you wander off in a few days.

It's alright that I ask, right? I don't wanna be noisy, I'm just curious."

Curious and a teensy bit bored, but they didn't need to hear that last part. It did fine being in her own head.

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

 

@Evil Pink One

"Just make sure to take care of yourself. Your marefriend got very sad the last time, and I'm sure she'd prefer it be a rarity, rather than a regular occurrence.

Now then, Lieutenant Foxglove? Might we have some words in private?"

The guard were baffled by the sudden request by the rather famous doctor, but she'd nod after a few seconds, and pushed her glasses further up her face again.

"Me? I... O-Off course, Doctor Toxina. It would be my honor."

The two of them would do their own bows, and then begin to depart. Though they would manage to overhear Shark's comment about the classes, which did at least make the older doctor smirk a little.

"Claaaaa-sss. Class... Big class is fish? Are mate taking Shark to good hunt lake?"

She were confusing it with him speaking of a high class fish right now, which did sound tasty. Even though she had the words for several things in her mind, and knew what they meant, it wasn't everything that were in there, or explained very well. Class might as well mean weight class, or as she had thought, a higher class of fishy than she were used to. It wasn't needed though. Any fishy, were a good fishy to eat.

Oh well, it didn't matter, right? He had some idea what they should do, and he were safe and happy again, so she were thrilled. Him being okay, were all she had ever hoped for, so now things could get nice again. Hopefully no more bad things would come into town, trying to hurt her mate.

FOr now, she'd go and nuzzle the sides of his face, until he were ready to leave. When he were, she'd follow, oblivious as to what they were actually about to do: Actual schoolwork.

Light would give a genuine smile towards shark and nozzle back at her.

" we'll go to the wet market then First and get you a first class Fish! How does that sound? Then meet head mistress Starlight. You good with that?" He asked her.

If so the Fish market they went, to buy Shark a first class fish.

@Blitz Boom

Edited by Evil Pink One
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@Blitz Boom
Solar was quick with his second coffee too, getting his part of the bits out too, he had now gotten used to it, but the use of physical coins was also something that had taken some learning from him, because while his world did have physical currency too, it was more a....lower class civilian thing, for him and those he interacted with, money, like many other things, was entirely a wireless, non-physical experience.  

"I do not grief what has been lost; while I miss some conveniences, it is a net good for that pit of suffering to end." his life had been decent, but he wasn't blind to the state of his world, it was doomed regardless; if not through end of the world, then through the system collapsing under its own weight, suffering couldn't go forever, something would break, no empire lasted forever.

"You are free to join me as I go see a place relevant for my duties, if you're not scared of water." he stated as he rose from the table "As the commanding officer and the main authority on the case, I can state that the situation I'm here to look at is not classified." "I am interested in hearing more of what you know, and am willing to in turn share what I can." he thought for a moment "I would also like an outside perspective on something, if possible." 

--------------------------------------------------------

Ruby's ears perked at the loud sound, but she didn't react to it in other ways, as she was kinda busy with the situation, however, she did make a mental note of it, as it was different from the usual sound of movement of stone. She didn't do much during the first part of the 'conversation' as combination of everything going on with her made it hard to focus on one thing, and she was also now annoyed at the mummy that had left, not just for the curse, but the fact that it had left the more important question of the two unanswered; she was all for sadistic predicaments, but, 'figure something out or die' was bit tasteless for even her. 

"I'm fine." She stated, in what was probably the least convincing manner she had ever done up to this point, her cold shell was starting to crack under the pressure, though it was not fear that was coming through, she was not scared of anything here, it was more....anxiety? Pain? it was hard to tell. "The good news is that Charir has made it out ." It actually took the eyes narrowing for Ruby to realize that the deer was interested in her specifically, as he following her wasn't anything new to her, since he had followed her here, but the lack of action from him earlier had given a reason to think it was nothing more than regular curiosity. She of course avoided him, not wanting him to touch her, as she had enough stuff going on as it was without some potential death touch from yet another undead "I believe the first thing would be to find the basement, one would think it holds some kind of answers." he was hoping the deer's interest would last so that he would just follow them down anyway, but she didn't want to say it out loud in case the deer had some intelligence left in it. 

If it wasn't already clear that she indeed was not 'fine' as she said, it would be more apparent as the curse's effects got reaction out of her too, as she staggered not unlike Leviathan, but took a moment longer to recover, and seemed to have at least some amount of shortness of breath; she hoped that the deer would stay at his slow walking pace, and wouldn't pull any tricks out of its non-existent sleeves, as she was already at this point actively fighting to keep her composure enough to not change forms, because if she were to change forms here, they would not be getting in the basement due to the simple fact of her being too big.

-------------------------------------

Sheska didn't really mind the difference in shade, in fact, she barely noticed it; being originally subterranean species, adapted to constantly dark forest, their branch of kobolds had slightly weaker color-vision than surface dwelling species, it was not a big difference, but a change of one or two shades didn't make any real difference to them. To her the prosthetic was less about appearance anyway, and more a convenience thing, since she mainly wanted it so that she didn't have one huge health hazard to worry about constantly. 

She thanked the doctor, nothing here really was such that she couldn't have done it herself eventually, but it was nice to have someone taking care of her once in a while, and it was lot more convenient to have this done by someone already familiar with this world's medicine. 

Trox was the one to answer the question, as Sheska was 'busy' moving her tail around to get used to the change in weight "We are currently staying in the tavern courtesy of a fellow kobold." "We need to find a more permanent place somewhere fit for us, and possibly a way to get a source of income." Sheska then joined in "Actually that reminds me, if I may ask, where would be a good place to find up to date information on medicine, illnesses, and other medical knowledge?

 

 

 

 

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@Blitz Boom

On 2024-04-12 at 5:18 AM, Blitz Boom said:

 

"Being willing to listen, is the first step towards being enlightened. If your elder looks for knowledge, and aren't afraid of new inputs, it leaves him able to listen, and embrace things that he could not, were he to simply leave his interests, at the leisure of your other elders. Still, their wisdom should not be ignored. It is yet important, as it will be the basis for how to lead your own kin. Even if it must evolve, for you to face the broader world around you.

If he means to listen, and he remains steadfast in that, no matter the outcome of your meeting, perhaps the day will then come, when we can offer him some outsiders perspectives to ponder. I should find it fairly interesting."

"Education as well, for both us, and him. You two are open-minded, but you are not in the position of leaders right now. His perspective on things, will be different than your own."

Knowing Elder Ghilan and his approach to leadership, guidance from others is something he’s all too eager to receive, within reason. Though the siblings never thought too much about the matter, one could only guess why he is seeking input from other leaders or those more knowledgeable than him. He once mentioned that he did receive guidance from the local council, but he sounded like he received poor advice, not to mention the subsequent blame game that resulted from said advice. Nothing suggested there was an attempt at sabotage, but for a time, Ghilan felt like he was being set up to fail. Nowadays, he simply makes the best of his situation. 

“If it is all right with you, maybe we could arrange for Ghilan to visit sometime? He may be busy these days, but he could be open to meeting you when he has time. We’ll still need to let him know, so it’ll probably be a while before we can get back to you on this.”

It would be interesting to see this happen, as Ghilan still sees himself as a student. Perhaps one day, there may be an exchange similar to what the kitsune do with their young being sent to Equestria. Though longma traditions were still mostly a kept secret, the young ones may find the old oral traditions passed by the nightly fires to be something of interest. It was difficult to gauge that kind of interest among the young of the villages, but no one can deny that those lessons stuck through many generations. No doubt there was value in those lessons no matter how one looked at them. 

However, Sen and Lin understood that not everything about the longma needed to change. After all, their experience here proved that the wisdom of the elders and the collective past of the longma had merits. They may have issues with the longma’s way of thinking, but reconciling that with the modern age may be how they could help their kind find balance. 

On 2024-04-12 at 5:18 AM, Blitz Boom said:

"Your willingness, is much appreciated. We shall see if it bears fruit."

Only then, would she turn towards the others, whilst behind her, fluttering spirits would begin to pop their heads out, curiously watching the newcomers, that were to be tested.

"I would ask you all to try, yet one at a time, please. Sen first, then Lin. Omen, I hope you will be willing to try too? I am somewhat curious, what they will think about you."

"Okay."

"Thank you. Now Sen, if you would please? Just sit in the middle, close your eyes, and focus your ears on listening. If you can hear a voice speaking to you, be not afraid of it. Try and listen, and when the waters part again, tell me if you heard something."

Without further delay, the siblings would follow the elders, though Sen would help Lin walk on account of her still rather disoriented vision. She’d still manage to proceed without too much issue aside from the occasional stumble. As they passed through the kitsune’s domain, they couldn’t help but silently admire the sights. This would be something to talk about to the folks back home, but knowing the prevailing attitudes, they’d much rather keep this one to themselves. Still, there was a lot to see and take in that the siblings would keep their attention on the moment and what was to come. 

Moving forward, Sen and Lin walked with Elder Sohe into the room, vegetation surrounding them. The sight of the globe and the circle caught their eyes. If time and the situation back home would permit, Sen would like to have a kind of private spot for him to meditate, inspired by the proximity to nature and the designs of the kitsune. Then again, it might be a little costly for the longma, as landscapers weren’t a thing back home. Some may even see it as a kind of destruction through the tampering of nature’s design. Only time will tell if this interpretation will remain relevant. 

With Sen being called in to try first, he smiled and nodded, restraining his enthusiasm and giddiness at the prospect of communing with spirits. It’ll be interesting to see what can become of it if he will discover a new, hidden talent of his. 

“Thank you again for this opportunity, Elder Sohe. And to the spirits here with us, whether we will be able to speak with each other or not, thank you as well.”

On 2024-04-12 at 5:18 AM, Blitz Boom said:

He would get three minutes to listen, after starting. And once he were in position, the water would close around the globe. If he could hear the voices, one or more would end up being heard by him, over the sound of rushing water. How many voices were discernable, would be important.

"Uuuh, this one has scales."

"I bet he can't hear a thing."

"I like your tail."

"Never seen someone like you before."

"Sohe likes him. Let's be nice."

"Awh, but it would be so fun to poke him."

Just because this were a sacred place, where one could attune with the spirits, if you had the gift, did not mean the spirits were overly serious about things. Often, the more playful would come out to do these tests, where the more serious were waiting to see if it were worth their time first.

If Sen could hear any of the voices, he could respond to it, or them. If not, it would just sound like water, insects buzzing, wind blowing softly through, and rustling of leaves. Things such as that.

The longma took up a spot in the middle of the platform to sit and quietly listen. He closed his eyes and attuned himself to his surroundings in eager anticipation to hear what the spirits in his midst were saying. Sadly, the minutes passed by without any big discoveries. Not one voice could be discerned from the silence, leaving Sen a little disappointed and somewhat dejected. It seemed like if he could hear one spirit talking, it would probably be the one that said he couldn’t hear a thing.

“Elder Sohe, I’m not sure I have the talent to hear the spirits. I could only hear a light buzzing, or maybe it was a light gust of wind. I do not doubt the spirits are present with us right now, but I could not hear their voices.” 

“Are you certain, brother? Maybe you just need another moment to try again.”

“I’m sure, but you are welcome to try. Perhaps inhabiting a body forged with magic might give you the ability to hear the spirits?”

“We shall see. Elder Sohe? I would like to try and listen.”

Lin chuckled at the thought, though it would be surprising if she had the talent. She would take up her position in Sen’s place and try. With Elder Sohe’s permission, Lin would go in without any expectations before trying to listen in on the spirits. To her, if she didn’t expect anything, she would not be disappointed. 

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@EQ_Theta

On 2024-04-14 at 1:37 PM, EQ_Theta said:

“If it is all right with you, maybe we could arrange for Ghilan to visit sometime? He may be busy these days, but he could be open to meeting you when he has time. We’ll still need to let him know, so it’ll probably be a while before we can get back to you on this.”

"I would welcome the meeting. If not here, then Zhao could speak with him on your premise. I'm sure that she could pass as one of you fairly well."

Elder Zhao would have a shimmer go over her, as she shifted her visage into that of a longma, similar to Lin, but without her shadowy features, and in a slightly different color.

"I have passed as more complex things. And before you ask, this is not a shapeshift. This is an advanced illusion. It takes actual skill, or anti-magic capabilities to know better."

They could try and poke her. It would feel like the hide of a real Longma.

"A fine illusion, will trick the eyes. A good illusion, will trick reality. To a certain extend."

It would fade, with a motion akin to a wind blowing it all of of her. She did not need to waste magic without reason, just to keep this up for more than the lesson required.

On 2024-04-14 at 1:37 PM, EQ_Theta said:

“Elder Sohe, I’m not sure I have the talent to hear the spirits. I could only hear a light buzzing, or maybe it was a light gust of wind. I do not doubt the spirits are present with us right now, but I could not hear their voices.” 

“Are you certain, brother? Maybe you just need another moment to try again.”

“I’m sure, but you are welcome to try. Perhaps inhabiting a body forged with magic might give you the ability to hear the spirits?”

“We shall see. Elder Sohe? I would like to try and listen.”

"Feel not bad about it, Sen. It is a rare skill, that befalls few. I am certain you will find your talents elsewhere."

SHe would lie if she had said she hadn't hoped, as it would be fascinating with one that were not of their kin, being under her tutelage. But there were still his sister left, who seemed eager to try herself too. Much like with Sen, the bubble would close as she entered, and the voices of the elements would begin anew.

"Hey, there's another one with scales!"

"Eh, if the other one could listen, why would this one?"

"Shush, she has shadow wings!"

"I think it's webbings. Is she a spider?"

"Spider with four legs, and no fangs? Hehe, that'd be silly."

"Maybe it's a kind of dragon. Can I poke her?"

The sounds would be as before. If Lin could understand it however, were hard to say. Sen had no luck, but she had proven unusual in many ways. It might be discouraging for Sen however, if his sister again would turn out to be excelling in something peculiar, leaving him behind as a seemingly just regular, standard longma. Not everyone could handle that, and not get jealous.

Meanwhile Omen would go over to Sen, and angle her neck so that she could look into his eyes. In case he did not look at her that were, as she spoke to him. She saw others look right at the one they were talking to, so she tended to do the same, and eye contact especially seemed important to her. The fact she didn't blink, being creepy to most creatures, did not cross her mind, even a little. Part of that whole *Personal space* thing that she weren't all that up to speed with. Wasn't like Discord discouraged that kind of behavior either. It were more the exact opposite, as he loved invading personal spaces, and have some fun with the ones in question. As he put it, *They should liven up, and adore the majesty of me.*.

"Sen? Are you okay?"

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

 

@Lawyer Slip

On 2024-04-12 at 12:07 AM, Lawyer Slip said:

"If you want to hug me, don't hesitate by any means, I'm technically fireproof. And if you're also wondering why I'm mentally sane and haven't been announced by the princesses, it's because I'm not from around here. And no, I'm not from Saddle Arabia either." 

He would not even get to finish the sentence, before Ziggy had zoomed over, and embraced him in a tight hug, her large frame looming over him, and her coat smelling like peppermint. Likely a perfume she wore. As for the hug, it would be over soon after, with Ziggy letting him go again, though grinning even wider. She loved the post-hug rush she felt.

On 2024-04-12 at 12:07 AM, Lawyer Slip said:

"Slipstream, if you want you can go out back to the pond, I'd like to chat with Ziggy."

"You got it!"

THANK YOU SO MUCH

Rich brought Ziggy her glass of water, and as she drank it, and after Slipstream closed the door, he said what he knew she was thinking. He could read minds after all. He tried not to, but they were like open books just waiting to be read. He did respect privacy though, and never peeked too far into anyone's past. But, after staring at Ziggy while she drank the water, he finally said:

"You're worried about him too, huh?"

Ziggy had been silent through the story. Not a word would pass her lips, but she had a rather expressive face, showing that she weren't sure how much of it that she believed, but she would listen, and try to keep an open mind regardless. It were just that... Well, humans, y'know? That were an old fairy tale. And she had no idea what a particle accelerator were, but it sounded sciency. But like she said, this place had all sorts of weird creatures. Why not this too? Worst case, he were imagining it, and it didn't hurt anypony, so she saw no reason to rat him out, as it were.

After he had sent Slipstream away, she drank her water, and were about to respond, when he said something more. Something she could tangibly respond to right off the bat. She'd circle around to the implausible story later, when there were no worry time over Rich to handle. That seemed prudent, as he were the one potentially causing himself unintentional harm.

"Well, yeah. He hits himself in the head. And that's all fine and good, until you hit too hard, or rattle something just the wrong way, and end up with a brain hemorrhage. It's concerning behavior, and I hope he'll stop it, before he gets seriously injured. I'm a doctor, I don't like seeing others hurt. Especially not if it's done by themselves.

Do you know why he does that? It kinda looks to me like he's having an argument with himself sometimes, and tries to make the other voice in his head go shush."

She hadn't a clue he could read minds, but looking at hers, if he decided too, there'd be worry, thoughts on Slipstream, Rich, and just a whoooole lot of background music and thoughts of frolicking bunnies and bright rainbows, as well herself flying through it, lifting a chunky duck over her head, giggling like this were a dream come true.

She had some silly thoughts at times, but she didn't mind, long as it didn't interfere with her thoughts during something important.

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

 

@Evil Pink One

"Maaar-keeet. Market. Wet market... Fishy place? Shark like fishy place."

They'd sadly have absolutely no luck finding that sort here in town however. While they got tourists who ate meat through, a full on fish market were a no go, in large parts due to it not being enough to sustain a market, and Fluttershy. Those who did need it for a snack, or as were the case of the cook at Slappy Joe's, tended to go and fish themselves, to get the raw materials.

That said, if they went asking around, they'd be told that said coffee shop had fish, and they could go and purchase a meal there. That would be an option. It were in the other end of town, and if they went in the door, a scrawny looking griffon would look up from his job of brooming the floor, to gaze at them, and went pale, then rushed off to the back room, without a word. Weren't a lot in right now, beyond a few getting a tall cup of coffee, so they wouldn't have to wait in line, though the mare at the counter were turned the other way, as she were cleaning the area. Had to look nice and sparkly after all.

"Bird is silly. Run like prey, hehe. Shark chase?"

She wasn't aware that he had run scared, and believed it to be perhaps an invitation to a game, like she knew them from the sea, or saw small ponies do at that other school place. A nice friend game. Though if he said no, she'd just follow him, and start to sniff the air profoundly. This place smelled weird, but in a good way. She hadn't smelled coffee properly before, so this were new. Also something that Light should definitely not ever let her drink. Caffeine were not meant for things with big teeth, and little in the way of inhibitions.

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

 

@Catpone Cerberus

On 2024-04-14 at 1:14 PM, Catpone Cerberus said:

"I do not grief what has been lost; while I miss some conveniences, it is a net good for that pit of suffering to end." his life had been decent, but he wasn't blind to the state of his world, it was doomed regardless; if not through end of the world, then through the system collapsing under its own weight, suffering couldn't go forever, something would break, no empire lasted forever.

"You are free to join me as I go see a place relevant for my duties, if you're not scared of water." he stated as he rose from the table "As the commanding officer and the main authority on the case, I can state that the situation I'm here to look at is not classified." "I am interested in hearing more of what you know, and am willing to in turn share what I can." he thought for a moment "I would also like an outside perspective on something, if possible." 

Oof, that was a rather grim statement about his home world. Not a lot of love for his roots, which really painted a pretty bleak image, of how his home world must actually be. At least from his perspective.

"I used to be scared of water. These days it will take a substantial amount for me to be overly concerned about it. Furthermore, I have nothing else to do for the day. I completed the task I had set for myself, in helping the O.M.I. as they helped me. Being helpful to you, seems more interesting that going and log some minor data into a spreadsheet. That can wait until later.

Likewise, I would want to hear more too. Speaking with one from another world, is a fascinating encounter, and I do wonder of your experiences since arriving here, among other things."

She'd grab her briefcase, and get ready for them to move out. She assumed this were some kind of maybe scientific crime. Potentially a biochemical he needed evaluated? Or a corpse in a strange state of decomposition? There had been some of those, as part of studies in Center Zero at times. Nothing her lab got involved with, but there were many departments, with their own specialties. Some required the studies of death tissue.

"I would like to state that if this requires examination of dead tissue, or a being in advanced, necrosis, I have prior experience. I sometimes got sent to other departments for tasks, back in Center Zero. You get to see quite a few things like that."

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

 

@Catpone Cerberus

On 2024-04-14 at 1:14 PM, Catpone Cerberus said:

"I'm fine." She stated, in what was probably the least convincing manner she had ever done up to this point, her cold shell was starting to crack under the pressure, though it was not fear that was coming through, she was not scared of anything here, it was more....anxiety? Pain? it was hard to tell. "The good news is that Charir has made it out ."

"I don't believe that you're feeling any good, but... We'll get through this. At least it's good knowing Charir made it out. The door were a mess when we went to look at it last time."

Leviathan were worried, and it were clear to see in her eyes, and hear in her voice, but Ruby were tough. Not enough to not be affected by the curse it seemed, judging by some of her movements, but enough to soldier through this, and she did not need to be pitied right now, or a shoulder to cry on. Didn't mean that she'd stop worrying though. Ruby was probably her closest friend already. They had a solid bond going, and that didn't allow Leviathan to feel at ease, when she were hurt, and being cursed with magic that would kill her if she left, without the forced job done, certainly counted as being hurt. Oh how she wished she could just burn those two into their base atoms for this...

*sigh* At least Charir had gotten out of here alive and well. That were a good sign, as she didn't want to think of him being trapped in a cage somewhere. It were a weight off of her shoulder to know he had gotten out and away from this sort of misery.

On 2024-04-14 at 1:14 PM, Catpone Cerberus said:

It actually took the eyes narrowing for Ruby to realize that the deer was interested in her specifically, as he following her wasn't anything new to her, since he had followed her here, but the lack of action from him earlier had given a reason to think it was nothing more than regular curiosity. She of course avoided him, not wanting him to touch her, as she had enough stuff going on as it was without some potential death touch from yet another undead "I believe the first thing would be to find the basement, one would think it holds some kind of answers." he was hoping the deer's interest would last so that he would just follow them down anyway, but she didn't want to say it out loud in case the deer had some intelligence left in it. 

The deer were not deterred, and just kept following her. She could use that to her advantage likely, leading him on to follow her towards wherever they were going. The basement as it were, soon as they could find an entrance for it.

"Okay, that creepy little... Whatever, seems to be focused on you. Let's just keep him in sight, and lead on. It sounded like we needed to do something int he basement, that included him. We'll probably see when we get there."

All the undead in the room had left by now, so it would be simple for them to move back the way they had come from, and start searching for the path. Now without any undead, they could start to look further for other paths, without anything getting in the way. The sole one they met, would instantly turn around and wander down a different path when seeing them. It did not seem they would be attacked currently. Likely orders from the leader, as they were now under enough pressure to not need to be brought in.

If they looked in the last room, there were a loose door, if they searched the walls. It were well hidden, having seemingly been meant to not be traversed. Leviathan could find it by searching around, pushing here and there, but it were likely easier for Ruby, as there were a pair of gold-plated antlers behind it, leading down. A warning sign to some. Treasure to others. Though Ruby might need to walk in a circle a few times, to avoid the deer, who did not seem to stop his fixation on her. Like being chased by a turtle, with no idea of its intentions.

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

 

@Catpone Cerberus

"Aaaah, inn residents, wanting to be locals, huh? Then you're probably one of those who outta look at the new section of town, and get yourself down for a home there. There's not a lot built there yet, but there's some working on it, when things aren't as hectic and crazy as they've been today. Some of them include businesses, though there's still plenty enough already in Ponyville. Depends on the sort of work you like that is.

If you talk about medicine and other related topics, so maybe you're healers, or doctors? You'd need the proper certifications to be counted as a doctor, but there's room for healers too in town, and there's that independent doctor, that got into town a few weeks ago. She's pretty nice, though I feel like a little filly, next to her.

Where was I... Oh right, if you want updated information on stuff, I'd say go to the library. Princess Twilight keeps adding more and more tomes, and I know some other med students have gone there to read. Seems as good a place as any to start, yeah? But you really should try and get a residence claimed first.

I'm pretty much off work by now. If you can wait the last bit before it's done, I can go show you where to handle stuff. You know, the right part of town, how to handle the claim, the library, that sort. Though it's hard to mis the library. The castle doesn't really blend in with anything."

Doctor Neon grinned at them. She didn't mind helping out, and it gave her something to do tonight. Not a good concert happening this night anyway, so she had plenty of time. And if these waned to be new residents, she had to show them that Ponyville welcoming spirit! It'd be fun. Except the library. It was dull. But that were libraries in a nutshell.

They were done with the tail, so if they could just wait the last bit of the hour, or come back after, Neon would have all the time to help them get settled in, as best she could. Though they might wanna weapon themselves with patience too.

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@Blitz Boom

Well, hold onto your non-existent socks because there's a reason for all that. See, he's not from around here. Well he is, but he's actually a time-traveller. He came from the future, but doesn't remember a thing about it. And then 3 days after his being here, he got involved with this crazy adventure of other versions of himself. And battled a Draconiquus called Cataclysmor, who I assume he told you about.

That stuff kinda messed him up and made him who he is. But don't let that stop you from being friends with him. He's a good kid, he just had a rough start. 

I'm betting he didn't tell you about his family. That's where it really gets sad, he can't ever remember having one. So, I'm trying to be the best "big brother" I can be if you know what I mean. I just want him to have a bright and happy future, y'know? 

And, yeah he was having an inner conversation with himself, I've seen his brain, he's got about 14 inside voices in there. And when he slaps himself he's snapping himself out of it to not be super panicked about everything, it's not a big deal because he can heal surprisingly fast.

But seriously, he's a good kid, and he's a great best friend too. He also won't admit it to anypony else, but he secretly loves hugs.

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@Blitz Boom

At First, Light was abit disappointed. But luckily a cafe that sells fish was open.

" well... Sorry Shark. This is the only place where they sell fish. Lets go in and have a date shall we?" 

Light was curious at the griffon and just brush it off as one of Sharks past victim that she unknowingly traumatized. He'd give a smirk to Shark's remark and would lovingly try to decline her to chase.

" maybe next time. We need to be mindful of the others around us. We don't want to disturb them do we?"

Light would get a coffee and hay, while shark can have any kind of fish dish they have.

Light would see that shark is curious of the smell of coffee, and knows the danger it might have if she drinks it.

But he doesnt have the heart to decline her.

" you can have a sip Sweetie, but please control yourself; since coffee will give you a surge of energy."

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@Blitz Boom

On 2024-04-16 at 6:29 AM, Blitz Boom said:

 

"I would welcome the meeting. If not here, then Zhao could speak with him on your premise. I'm sure that she could pass as one of you fairly well."

Elder Zhao would have a shimmer go over her, as she shifted her visage into that of a longma, similar to Lin, but without her shadowy features, and in a slightly different color.

"I have passed as more complex things. And before you ask, this is not a shapeshift. This is an advanced illusion. It takes actual skill, or anti-magic capabilities to know better."

They could try and poke her. It would feel like the hide of a real Longma.

"A fine illusion, will trick the eyes. A good illusion, will trick reality. To a certain extend."

The siblings looked on as Elder Zhao shifted her appearance to a longma, a fairly good representation of one at that. Sen, in particular, recalled a previous experience with a changeling hive queen named Cheshire who gave him quite the scare back then when they were at the carnival. This one wasn’t so terrifying now, given the time he spent learning about the abilities of other creatures. Now it could work for Elder Zhao should she wish to move among the longma. However, given the precarious situation they were in, it may be better to have Elder Ghilan be the one to make the trip. 

“Your illusion is impressive, elder, though it may be better for Elder Ghilan to meet you as you are. It may be more helpful for him to see you as kitsune.”

“That, and we’d rather not expose you to unnecessary danger. I’m sure you are capable of defending yourself, but there, you would be our guest. It would reflect poorly on us as your hosts.”

On 2024-04-16 at 6:29 AM, Blitz Boom said:

Meanwhile Omen would go over to Sen, and angle her neck so that she could look into his eyes. In case he did not look at her that were, as she spoke to him. She saw others look right at the one they were talking to, so she tended to do the same, and eye contact especially seemed important to her. The fact she didn't blink, being creepy to most creatures, did not cross her mind, even a little. Part of that whole *Personal space* thing that she weren't all that up to speed with. Wasn't like Discord discouraged that kind of behavior either. It were more the exact opposite, as he loved invading personal spaces, and have some fun with the ones in question. As he put it, *They should liven up, and adore the majesty of me.*.

"Sen? Are you okay?"

Lin stepped into position and began tuning all external stimuli out; she sat and anticipated the possibility of hearing the spirits. It wasn’t something she’d think was possible, but being open to this kind of discovery would make her the envy of her brother. In all honesty, having an aspect that stood out could be both a blessing and a curse. Her situation at the moment was proof of that: being brought back with a new body was necessary to save her life, but it gave her some benefits. Quick travel was something he knew to capitalize on, but on some nights, she wished she was just a normal longma. Simple comforts afforded by a normal body, such as sleep, were easily overlooked, but having that taken away tends to leave an impression. 

As for Sen, he took Elder Sohe’s words to heart and found some comfort in them. It was true that his talents may lie elsewhere, and speaking to spirits may not be in the metaphorical cards for him. Disappointing it may be, the longma would not let it get the best of him. 

After that, he looked at Omen, pondering her question. He didn’t seem to mind her looking rather off-putting in these moments and was just appreciative of it. Perhaps having that look staring him in the face as he woke up would still creep him out, but time has given him opportunities to just get used to it. However, some thoughts were more conflicting. Things were rather calm for the moment, but it was enough to get him to think about all the things that were happening now and back home. Turns out that things just keep piling up, and the gravity of all that has and will happen slowly began to gnaw at Sen’s mind. 

 

“I’m all right, Omen. I may not have the talent to speak with spirits, but I won’t be upset about it. Sometimes, we just can’t do everything we hope we could do.”

*sigh* “Who am I kidding? I’m not entirely okay. I was just thinking about all that’s happened and what we’ll be getting ourselves into… all of that is making me worried. The meeting with the elders is approaching; that has to turn out well, right? We talked to others, heard their thoughts, and figured out how to approach the meeting. It’s just that I’m still afraid that we haven’t done enough. A-and then there’s the threat of… whatever it is… that is coming for the longma… I don’t know if we could find the balance that lets us take those on.”

“I suppose I am overthinking all of this, but we’ll just have to take these matters on as they come. How about you? Does all this feel intimidating?”

On 2024-04-16 at 6:29 AM, Blitz Boom said:

"Hey, there's another one with scales!"

"Eh, if the other one could listen, why would this one?"

"Shush, she has shadow wings!"

"I think it's webbings. Is she a spider?"

"Spider with four legs, and no fangs? Hehe, that'd be silly."

"Maybe it's a kind of dragon. Can I poke her?"

The sounds would be as before. If Lin could understand it however, were hard to say. Sen had no luck, but she had proven unusual in many ways. It might be discouraging for Sen however, if his sister again would turn out to be excelling in something peculiar, leaving him behind as a seemingly just regular, standard longma. Not everyone could handle that, and not get jealous.

As for Lin, she listened in as the bubble sealed around her. Without outside distractions, she followed Sen’s meditative techniques, passed on to her from their childhood. She didn’t think she’d need to meditate, but her younger self thought it was a nice thing to know about. Now, she was just happy Sen taught it to her. As she continued to sit in silence, the sounds of a breeze blowing by came first, followed by a light buzzing, the kinds of sounds her brother just described earlier. There was also something like faint whispers in the wind, but none of it was decipherable. She continued sitting and tuning in to these sounds in the hopes she could try deciphering them, but there was nothing more in store, just the same sounds. Lin emerged from the bubble looking rather confused despite tempering her expectations. It seemed like even that was more than enough to overcome her controlled approach despite her uncertainty. 

“I think I am in the same position as my brother; I can’t hear the spirits. Maybe I might have caught something like faint whispering, but I could not understand it. Or maybe I am just deluding myself into thinking I could hear something more than just empty sounds. Elder? Must one clearly hear the spirits speak to know if they have the ability to speak to them? I’m not even sure what to make of my experience in the bubble.” 

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@EQ_Theta

On 2024-04-18 at 4:52 PM, EQ_Theta said:

“Your illusion is impressive, elder, though it may be better for Elder Ghilan to meet you as you are. It may be more helpful for him to see you as kitsune.”

“That, and we’d rather not expose you to unnecessary danger. I’m sure you are capable of defending yourself, but there, you would be our guest. It would reflect poorly on us as your hosts.”

"We kitsune are highly magical creatures, well in tune with the flow of magic that permeates the very air around us, and the ground we stand upon. In our race's earlier history, we harnessed that primarily to make use of illusions, and we have only fine tuned it as we have evolved. It is in fact, the thing that our young are taught as almost their very first set of spells, so they can hide from danger. When we grow older, we make us of it well, when we go out and explore the world. Mostly when we are found out to have been in an area, is because especially the young and inexperienced, cannot help themselves, in playing games with strangers, or get involved in things they believe they out to. Some also just find it humorous to reveal themselves briefly to one being, and then laugh as they start screaming about giant foxes, and make a fool of themselves.

I can understand why. It can be rather amusing."

Elder Zhao were a venerated teacher and elder, that were given much, well earned respect. But she too had been young, and filled with both wanderlust and mischief. She did not apologize for pranks such as this, and had learned much from seeing how other creatures acted upon that. But that were then, and these days, she would not be easily tempted. Not to say she wouldn't do it, just that she were better at understanding when the right time for such an act were.

"in any case, if the time comes where he is ready, have Omen transport him to our town, and then approach our halls. She would seem the safest route of transport, for anyone to get to our town, for both us, and the other party involved."

It were an annoying security breach, but it were not much of a big issue. Primarily because of who Omen were a byproduct of, and the fact that she had doubts they could stop her. Besides, she seemed friendly enough, albeit somewhat peculiar.

On 2024-04-18 at 4:52 PM, EQ_Theta said:

“I’m all right, Omen. I may not have the talent to speak with spirits, but I won’t be upset about it. Sometimes, we just can’t do everything we hope we could do.”

*sigh* “Who am I kidding? I’m not entirely okay. I was just thinking about all that’s happened and what we’ll be getting ourselves into… all of that is making me worried. The meeting with the elders is approaching; that has to turn out well, right? We talked to others, heard their thoughts, and figured out how to approach the meeting. It’s just that I’m still afraid that we haven’t done enough. A-and then there’s the threat of… whatever it is… that is coming for the longma… I don’t know if we could find the balance that lets us take those on.”

“I suppose I am overthinking all of this, but we’ll just have to take these matters on as they come. How about you? Does all this feel intimidating?”

Omen would look at Sen for a moment, pondering what he were saying, before she answered. Most things of what he said were something she understood, but there were that one thing, that she needed to try and grasp, and yet, there were naught for her to grasp on to, and so she would give that up, soon after.

"We handle the dangerous things, like they told us. I go and look, and then we find out from there, yes? If the meeting goes well, perhaps they can come and help looking? They seem smart about these things. But I do not know what to expect from the meeting, or what it will mean. I will just do as you, Rosa, and Ghilan have told me to, and then answer their questions. If they will help, I do not know, but I will answer the things you have not told me I can.

And I am not intimidated, I think? I do not know what that would be like. I do not think I am different from before, if that answers it?"

Being intimidated required some emotions to rear up. Anxiety, fear, concern- A lot in the same *genre*, as it were. Regardless of the term though, Omen did not feel it. She only barely felt any emotion at the best of times, and fear were one that might have passed her vaguely, back when Lin were going to get her new body, but a meeting? Nothing stirred there, except thoughts at times, wondering what they would look like, or ask about.

On 2024-04-18 at 4:52 PM, EQ_Theta said:

“I think I am in the same position as my brother; I can’t hear the spirits. Maybe I might have caught something like faint whispering, but I could not understand it. Or maybe I am just deluding myself into thinking I could hear something more than just empty sounds. Elder? Must one clearly hear the spirits speak to know if they have the ability to speak to them? I’m not even sure what to make of my experience in the bubble.” 

"This center holds a strong connection, to the nature spirits. If one could hear, this is one of the places, were the potential would reveal itself. Had you an ear for it, their voices would have been if not loud, then at least clear to you.

You must both know, that this is not to say that you have no chance of being listeners, but it will be due to an outside force, if it does come to happen. Certain trauma, or encounters with special creatures, can plant the talent within you. Yet at this point, I in honest do not think that this is your calling. Yet still, I thank you for entertaining my request. It would have been an experience, to have non-kitsune, learning the craft.

Well then, Omen, if you would please?"

Omen would wander over, and try to go in, but the path would close before her. She'd just wander through the water, not thinking much of it. Her trip in there would last around six minutes, before the waters parted, letting her escape again. And by the looks of things, something had happened in there, as she looked both damp, and windblown, with some leaves stuck in her ever-moving mane and tail. She would also cough up a few leaves, when approaching, but then grab them with her tongue, and bring them in to be chewed.

"It seems you had an eventful time. What happened?"

"I walked through water, then the wind began blowing. Then more water, that had leaves in them. I think the pillow is wet now."

"Did you hear any voices?"

"...Does laughter count? I think I heard that, when I got splashed with water in my face."

The elder blinked once, then smirked a little wider.

"Probably not, it were likely just the wind and water through foliage. Yet I will try and find an answer, when the spirits have calmed. It seems your presence caused them a stir."

"I am not overly surprised. Considering her connection, I would have thought it more unusual, if it were simple and quiet in there."

"I had half expected for Him to show up personally, but still, I did not expect this. I shall look forward to hearing what they have to say of this, when they are ready. Though do not get your hopes up. I can imagine they were simply feeling playful. Why, I have a student whose tail they snared four meters of tangled river weeds to. He were wise enough to play along, rather than get upset, and were acknowledged by River, because of that. He's a promising young kit, silly as he gets around the spirits."

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

 

@Evil Pink One

Shark would stop getting into chase mode, and just let he griffon run off. She can't remember ever seeing him before, but maybe he had seen her when she were chasing and eating the big frogs? Some of the friends did not seem to like that, even though she had been told they were food. Oh well, maybe she should ask them someday, but right now, she were on a date. She wasn't sure what that were exactly, but she were on one, and it were her mate that had said it, so she would believe it was something good. Maybe it meant that they were going to get food? She should try and remember that, if that were the case.

Speaking of getting food, when he were talking to the mare at the counter, he'd find that she didn't turn around just yet, as she were finishing up the counter, but she would, soon as he had given out the order on his behalf. That said, she'd barely pay attention to him at first, as she'd see Shark, and jump in place, looking surprised, then grinning widely.

"Hah! I knew it! Chop! Come out here for a moment."

She'd be calling back towards the kitchen as she said that, and a hooffull of seconds later - a time where she'd stand and step in place expectingly, while Shark looked on in confusion and joy, since y'know, smiling friend - a stallion would emerge to look at what the fuss were about. This one Shark noticed quite a bit, and it were hard not to for most. Chop Chop were a little over average size, and well fit. He were however, also in possession of several scars, that looked like something had torn into him, with large, sharp teeth. Particularly, the one around his torso stood out, as it covered both sides, showing a rather large maw had gone around his torso.

The scar tissue were looking somewhat old, but combined with the ones going over his face, the fact he didn't smile often, and that steely gaze of his, Chop usually had others step away from him, when they met him, as he looked intimidating to them. Shark were not one of them.

"*gasp* Friend bit by Shark! Not Shark shark, but other shark."

"Hah, she knew. And I told you she were real! A land shark, right here in Ponyville."

"Hmph. Figured she'd be bigger.

And yeah, shark bites. Why'd you ask?"

"Shark know teeth of shark, and Shark no like that friend got bit. It very bad. Friend is not food."

"...I'll go turn up the stove. Something tells me she's here for food."

"Friend has fishy?"

He'd just nod, and go back into the kitchen. He had some work to do now.

"Huh... Well, I'm sure it'll be good, whatever he gets you. Chop's a good chef, just kinda antisocial. You can have your coffee for now sir, and anything for you to drink?"

Shark went and looked up at all the strange pictures, and lines of text, not knowing what the vast majority were.

"...Water for Shark?"

"You got it."

The barista would get the coffee - soon as Light specified which of the 37 variants they had, that he wanted - and a can of water ready, and come over to their table with it, and say that the food would be there soon. Meanwhile, Shark would sniff at the coffee, but hadn't intended on drinking it. Not until Light offered her to try, in which case she'd cautiously lean over, and stick her tongue down, lapping a few droplets of it, and then go back to her side of the table, looking thoughtful.

"...Shark not sure. Taste funny, not sure if bad. But water good."

She'd lean over and stick her head into the thankfully wide can, so she could lap up some water.

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

 

@Lawyer Slip

Ziggy looked on, getting concerned from what she heard. The medical parts anyway, as the other things still sounded a bit out there, but then again, who was it hurting, even if it wasn't true? And if it were... Cool. Sort of. There were some not so cool stuff in there.

"Awh, poor guy. Maybe him and the filly in the woods would have gotten along. She have severe amnesia, where she can't remember a thing before waking up in a crater in the forest. She couldn't even remember her big brother, when he found her, and took her back to Deltrot. He had pictures to show it were real though, and he were a tinkerer like her. Said she'd been making explosives since she was five, so that fit what she were doing in the forest.

Anyway, I had a look at her, but I wouldn't be able to help either. It's not my specialty. I'm more of a general doctor, with a specialty in setting bones. Your friends probably needs a CT scan, and perhaps a hypnotherapist to try and unlock his memories. Least he's somewhat healthy, though uh... Well, I know he's your friend, but maybe you should consider convincing him to get checked for the voices? Some medication might help with that. Like I said, it's not my specialty, but it does sound like he might have schizophrenia, and getting some treatment for that, might do him some real good. It's his own decision though. Unless he's a danger to himself or others, that sorta thing comes down to a personal choice.

It's really good of you to try and take care of him either way. It sounds like he could really use a friend these sort of days, and like you said, a caring big brother. Hehe, also a boat load of hugs, but I can make that happen.

I just looove hugs! Some days, I just sit in a cloud and wait for the right time to swoop down, and do a quick swoop-by hug. Not for too long though, I have excessive levels of energy production. If I sit down for too long, I end up getting jittery. Usually why I start off my mornings just swooping around for an hour, to get the worst out of my system, so I can focus on what to do, the rest of the day.

What about you? Like, what do you love? Cooking?"

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As soon as the scarred stallion came out, Light was worried that this was one of Sharks victims and was preparing to pay for compensation for her. Luckily it wasnt her who did it.

It got Light curious on how he got the scars, but he himself is much of a loner, until Shark came into his life; so he knows not to pry or overly close to those kinds of pony.

As he sees what he orders. He worries if this is too much or enough for shark...

In any case they'll just take to go the ones they couldnt finish.

As shark tasted the coffee, it seems she has no interest in it.

" i see you don't fancy the drink? Perhaps its best to have clean clear water since you primarily swim in one and breath it before.... So perhaps coffee or any beverages that isnt pure water is like smoke to you? Perhaps perfume?" He wonders.

Edited by Evil Pink One
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@Blitz Boom

”I have already gathered everything there is to get from the body, what I need is more just someone to bounce my thoughts off of, as my bias and experiences make me unable to see the whole picture.” Solar explained as they left ”I have the victim, means, and the perpetrator, but I cannot figure out the motive.” ”And while it isn’t necessarily your expertise, I’d like to hear your unbiased opinion."

Solar was heading to the edge of the city, to the sea, as the body had been found in the water, and thus, he wanted to see if there was anything else to find that the others may have overlooked. After they had left the cafe, he explained ”A little backstory, where I come from, we ponies enslaved a species known as kobolds, it lasted for some time, but as technology got better, while never fully abolished, slavery fell out of favor as machines don’t need to eat or sleep.” ”That is where our victim comes in, you no doubt saw him, since you came from the morgue.” ”Some individuals, mainly rich elites of the capitals, kept their kobolds, as the services they provided were such that them being living creatures was part of it.”

”This often goes for generations, and in current date, or at least the time I was pulled away from my world, there were generations of kobolds to whom the life of the servant was the only thing they knew.” ”As a result, they are basically part of the family, and while one can argue about morals, the fact is that be it manipulation or genuine connection, these kobolds do not wish to leave their master, even when given plenty of chances in some cases.” as far he knew, it was something to do with their natural loyality, if they believed, misguided or not, that someone was part of them, they were deadly loyal to them.

”Yet, this case breaks all of that.” ”The body was that of a such elite, I don’t recognize him, so he wasn’t from our side, but that isn’t really relevant.” ”He was ripped apart, however, it was not done by wild animal, but rather, a group of kobolds, more specifically, servants.” ”Those like him have camera imbeded into them for security, which allowed me to see what happened.” ”And it wasn’t just a wild attack of kobold gone mad, the attack was calculated, yet sudden, happening seemingly out of nowhere.” ”Everything was seemingly normal, until one of the servants came in, whispered something to another, and all of them surrounded their owner and attacked.”

”This is where you come in, do you have any ideas?” ”Because based on all the facts I know, something like this should be impossible, generations of mental manipulation doesn’t go away just like that.” ”What would drive someone, genuinely loyal to someone, suddenly turn against them so suddenly and so violently?”

He had managed to pick some details from the short video that he didn’t mention, like the city’s alarm blaring on the background, but those didn’t seem to him to relate to the motive.

--------------------------------------

Ruby couldn’t necessarily tell that there was a door just by sensing the antlers, however, she found it by accident, as after circling the room to grow bit more distance between her and the slow pursuer, she was going to ask Leviathan if she could maybe blast the wall as there was seemingly another room behind it; she didn’t expect it to stay broken, but she figured that they could get a glance inside before the magic of the place fixed it; however, when she put her hoof on it to point at it, she noticed it moved, and thus instead of what she was going to say, she stated ”I think there’s a door here.”

She however didn’t get the chance to try to open it yet, as she needed to start moving to avoid the deer once again, but if Leviathan didn’t do so during another circle around the room, she would return to the assumed door to try and open it, though if it was especially heavy, she’d struggle, as she was still exhausted, and the whole curse business didn’t exactly help with that.

”The main corpse said something about Dragon’s might, and how that ’could’ force it back, any idea what that could be?” ”Fire?”

-------------------------------------

”I’m a healer yes, my brother isn’t; though in our culture and language there’s no difference between a doctor and a healer.” she had done things that many doctors didn’t know how to do, like attaching new limbs to her brother ”Not that I’d be trying to get to work in the hospital anyway, not my style” she wanted to have a personal connection to those she cared for, and that didn’t really happen in a place which was basically a mass-production equivalent for healthcare.

”And while help is of course welcome, it’s not necessarily that we specifically want to be locals, we just need a roof over our heads like everyone else.” ”In fact, we’ll probably look for something outside the already existing settlement, so that we have room to expand when needed, and so that we can live by our own way of life.” there was slight emphasis on ’our own’; the two kobolds were being perfectly nice and friendly, but something about their way of speech signaled that they felt the need to stress the fact that they weren’t ponies.

”We can wait for you, we have something we need to do here anyway, oh, and thanks.” if there was nothing else, they would leave the room, after which they would go ask and see if they could see Onache, or if she had any visitors they could talk to.

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@Blitz Boom

Heh, you should see him when he's racing or gets excited about it. He'll have more energy than Pinkie Pie on a sugar rush. He's crazy fast too. Faster than anypony I've ever met. *Sigh* If only he wasn't afraid to do it publicly. Not since, the incident.

Anyways, you asked about my interests? Well, cooking isn't my passion, it's moreso a hobby I've picked up. I do enjoy it though. 

Some of my actual interests are mining, exploring, walking, fighting bad guys, though I don't do that much, and of course origami and kirigami. 

*He showed her a life-size origami pickaxe he had been working on his spare time.*

The trick, is to make sure all your creases are lined up perfectly, otherwise your masterpiece, may not look as masterful as you would've liked.

*He then started grabbing pieces of pink and white paper and then began to carefully fold them. No sooner than five minutes later, and he had folded a 1:55 scale origami Ziggy.*

"Here you go, a gift from me to you!"

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@Blitz Boom

On 2024-04-20 at 6:23 AM, Blitz Boom said:

"in any case, if the time comes where he is ready, have Omen transport him to our town, and then approach our halls. She would seem the safest route of transport, for anyone to get to our town, for both us, and the other party involved."

“I’m sure he’d appreciate the opportunity to speak with and learn from you, as well as see places beyond the longma’s forest home. We’ll make the arrangements when he is prepared, though given what is happening now, it may take some time.” 

“If all goes well, I think you and Elder Ghilan will have lots to speak about! Maybe he would even get to experience getting pranked by the young kitsune! I wonder what he’d think about that…”

Sen chuckled, delighted at the thought, though he wouldn’t mind being present to learn alongside the longma elder. There was a sense of wonder in getting to know other creatures and their cultures. Despite the rocky beginnings from exile to hiding away due to poor experiences, the longma found value in forging stronger ties with others unlike him. Lin would certainly agree, though her sentiments on the matter stemmed from the pursuit of knowledge. They may not know it, but perhaps even Ghilan may find joy in opening up to others despite what the elders may say.

Maybe one day the kitsune, or other creatures, could visit the longma without fear or hostility… Until that day comes, they’ll just have to work towards making that a reality.

On 2024-04-20 at 6:23 AM, Blitz Boom said:

"We handle the dangerous things, like they told us. I go and look, and then we find out from there, yes? If the meeting goes well, perhaps they can come and help looking? They seem smart about these things. But I do not know what to expect from the meeting, or what it will mean. I will just do as you, Rosa, and Ghilan have told me to, and then answer their questions. If they will help, I do not know, but I will answer the things you have not told me I can.

And I am not intimidated, I think? I do not know what that would be like. I do not think I am different from before, if that answers it?"

Though he had his doubts and worries on the matter, maybe there wasn’t a need to have it overcome him. Sen wanted this to work, and maybe he has to have faith. Omen and emotions may not pair well, but that had an advantage that worked in her favor. There wouldn’t be a need to worry about the things that are out of their control; they know their approach and how to go about it. All that they needed now was to execute when the time came. Sometimes, Sen wished he could narrow down on the important things without getting hung up on what if and what could be. 

“Being intimidated is another way to say that something is making you scared. Though maybe being able to feel emotions strongly or at all means it wouldn’t be possible to be scared in the first place… I guess I am asking because there are unknowns, and not knowing things can be scary. If something unexpected happens, we would be unprepared. It might show weakness on our part, or it wouldn’t inspire confidence in others.” 

“But not being intimidated… it wouldn’t make you different from before. However, some would look at you and think you are confident because you know what you would do in a situation, which is a good thing. As for the things we don’t know, we will just have to figure things out as they come, right? I won’t claim that what we’ll do when it happens will always be the right thing, but we’ll make the best of it and hope it turns out well. Sometimes, that may be all we could do.”

If this is what being an elder is like, Sen won’t envy the position Elder Ghilan found himself in. It sounded like there was an equal measure of being knowledgeable and being hopeful, with the latter being more difficult to accept. 

On 2024-04-20 at 6:23 AM, Blitz Boom said:

"Did you hear any voices?"

"...Does laughter count? I think I heard that, when I got splashed with water in my face."

The elder blinked once, then smirked a little wider.

"Probably not, it were likely just the wind and water through foliage. Yet I will try and find an answer, when the spirits have calmed. It seems your presence caused them a stir."

"I am not overly surprised. Considering her connection, I would have thought it more unusual, if it were simple and quiet in there."

"I had half expected for Him to show up personally, but still, I did not expect this. I shall look forward to hearing what they have to say of this, when they are ready. Though do not get your hopes up. I can imagine they were simply feeling playful. Why, I have a student whose tail they snared four meters of tangled river weeds to. He were wise enough to play along, rather than get upset, and were acknowledged by River, because of that. He's a promising young kit, silly as he gets around the spirits."

It was as Elder Sohe said, and the siblings didn’t have the talent to speak with spirits. Lin didn’t feel the pang of disappointment as much as her brother did, but it still stung that she didn’t have another skill to add to her repertoire. There was no point arguing what the evidence pointed toward, though the elder’s words on the possibility of being a listener weren’t out of the question. There was still a chance, but it’ll have to happen another way if it does. 

“Aww… and I was hoping I could listen to the spirits and hear them speak… It’s all right, though. As much as I wish I could do everything, some folks could do things others couldn’t. It’s just a fact of life, right?”

“Still, we are grateful for the chance to try. If anything, we learned a little bit more about ourselves, even if all we got was what we couldn’t do. Thank you, Elder Sohe.”

The siblings stood and bowed to the kitsune elder, showing their sincerity in the matter. Maybe such an experience wouldn’t be possible if it were someone else conducting it, but being afforded this chance to try was more than enough. Frankly, simply being present to learn was already more than enough given the siblings’ life experiences. The two stood by and watched as Omen took her turn, eagerly waiting to see how her experience would turn out. The splashing and laughter were unexpected, more so if it were truly the spirits acting through nature leaving Omen looking rather messy. Even that was enough to pique their curiosity. 

“The spirits seem like they can exert their influence on what we can see and feel. Elders, would you say that there are different types of spirits and that they can act upon our physical realm? I admit, my understanding of spirits is limited. The only spirits I am aware of are more like ghosts, invisible but present, yet unable to act on their surroundings unless they are powerful enough.” 

Edited by EQ_Theta
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@EQ_Theta

On 2024-04-21 at 4:29 PM, EQ_Theta said:

“I’m sure he’d appreciate the opportunity to speak with and learn from you, as well as see places beyond the longma’s forest home. We’ll make the arrangements when he is prepared, though given what is happening now, it may take some time.” 

“If all goes well, I think you and Elder Ghilan will have lots to speak about! Maybe he would even get to experience getting pranked by the young kitsune! I wonder what he’d think about that…”

Elder Sohe would chuckle lowly.

"I would be impressed, were our young to be the first to take the opportunity."

Truthfully, she didn't think it one of them either, tempting as it would be. They had things to do, and thus wouldn't be there to take him as the first, when he would arrive. She suspected one of the teachers would get the first chance, and embrace it with good spirit.

One might wonder why it had not happened then, with the longma siblings, but it were different circumstances. They had shown, with Lin ill and under the care of the school healers. That were a poor time to try and run pranks, and when then another had them escorted towards the elders, it would be seen as there perhaps being urgent news they had to handle, by several onlookers. Others simply didn't have the chance to do it proper, before the chance had passed. Elder Ghilan though? This wouldn't be a chance that others would let pass them twice.

He should likely be expecting several pranks on his behalf, by the time he reached the elders, but what fun were there in telling him that in advance? No, Elder Sohe would tend for her village, in what ways were the best, for those living within it. That included letting them have some harmless fun, on behalf of the outsider. It would be good for them to get a first impression, and he too then, would come to understand a bit more how they were, as a race. They knew not to go too far, so he would be safe.

"But we will be sure to look forward to the opportunity to speak with him, when time is fortunate for him. I cannot say for certain whom of us will be here to speak with him on the day, as our duties require us to handle things here and there, with some degree of urgency at times. But there should be someone to take his visit, with as little delay as is possible."

On 2024-04-21 at 4:29 PM, EQ_Theta said:

“Being intimidated is another way to say that something is making you scared. Though maybe being able to feel emotions strongly or at all means it wouldn’t be possible to be scared in the first place… I guess I am asking because there are unknowns, and not knowing things can be scary. If something unexpected happens, we would be unprepared. It might show weakness on our part, or it wouldn’t inspire confidence in others.” 

“But not being intimidated… it wouldn’t make you different from before. However, some would look at you and think you are confident because you know what you would do in a situation, which is a good thing. As for the things we don’t know, we will just have to figure things out as they come, right? I won’t claim that what we’ll do when it happens will always be the right thing, but we’ll make the best of it and hope it turns out well. Sometimes, that may be all we could do.”

"I do not understand, but I am not sure if that is good or bad. Mother says that we adapt, and learn from mistakes. Master Discord said that life is chaos, and I should just flow with it. So I try and experience things as they happen, and learn from them. I do not know if that is the right thing to do, but when he were gone, and Mother said I had to try and live myself, it were the only way I could think of, to do as they told me. There have been many unknown things I have seen like this, but I have not seen anything, that I think made me scared. And nothing that explained to me how it would be, to be afraid. Emotions are very hard, when you have not tried them,. like you have.

Also I do not know what I am supposed to do, except keep you safe. I believe that you and Lin will know what to do, long as I can do this."

"You claim not to know how fear works?"

Elder Zhao raised an eyebrow at that, and went closer, planting her paw on Omen's forehead. A shimmering light would pass across her eyes for a time, followed by her looking around, but then stare directly at Sen. A sight which seemed to puzzle the elder somewhat.

"Peculiar. You should have seen something that spooked you then. How do you see through this?"

Her tail flicked, and the light shimmering before Omen's eyes, vanished again.

"I know who is real. The things I saw, were not real. It did not have Sen's smell."

"Hmm, usually the senses are fooled too... I think I will ponder this subject further, and return to it. I've been lacking a challenge recently."

On 2024-04-21 at 4:29 PM, EQ_Theta said:

“The spirits seem like they can exert their influence on what we can see and feel. Elders, would you say that there are different types of spirits and that they can act upon our physical realm? I admit, my understanding of spirits is limited. The only spirits I am aware of are more like ghosts, invisible but present, yet unable to act on their surroundings unless they are powerful enough.” 

"You are thinking of spirits of the dead, more than likely. Those are different, than those whom I commune with. The ones I am connected with, are spirits of nature. Born of it, living as ensouled flickers of the world that we inhabits, and yet, their souls are not like yours or mine. They are warm and light. Breaths of the natural order, given form, until their time pass. It is not for us to understand why they come into existence, or what happens after. They simply are, and brief or long, we cherish their presence, as they nature the world around us.

I have been in places, where there are not even the smallest, frolicking wind spirit. Those places reeks of death, and stagnation. Places not meant for mortal paws to thread upon.

As for the souls of us mortal beings, there are those who can commune with those too. But that is the realm of another elder to speak of with more readiness, and expertise. Sadly he is not present, as he were needed somewhere else for the day, but perhaps another time, you can meet him, and hear what he has to say of the matter. Perhaps he can offer some insight, that you seek. Including on the ways that mortal spirits interact with the world. Something very different, from the way that those of nature does.

Though be advised, that there are nuances in this too. The ones you have seen here, are smaller, more joyful ones, who enjoy nurturing and living in the bountiful place we build with them. Others are able to harness grater forces, and start storms, or bring fire from the ground. Those are classified as elementals, and were I you, I would stay clear of them. They rarely care for the intrusion of mortals, upon the areas they reside in. Even speakers as I, are more tolerated, than accepted, long as we approach with the proper respect."

She would not mind speaking of more things, but they would already have much to think about, and she both had more to do today, and a want to not overwhelm the three of them with too much at once. It seemed Omen too, believed it time that they should leave, which she judged upon the words before, and so she had opened a gate to a place beyond. Her home, where both elders would gaze in curiously, as several of her siblings would be drawn in instantly, by the strange, magical beings. She would need to open a few more gates, so that the three of them could leave, as one would not be open for long, before her kin would be drawn in flocks.

The main one though, had a flock that had drawn the attention of something else. River would rise out of the flow of water, leaning in with its elongated body, and would form a three fingered hand, where the *index* finger would reach out towards the gate. The siblings on the other side of it, morphing looks to seem a mess of eyes and shadow, in a vaguely similar form to River, reaching a melting *hand* out of their own. River would not touch, but would move around, uncertain of these strange, whispering things.

"Our siblings know you are magical. And they find the water creature curious."

"They seem pressed against this surface... I take it they are unable to leave?"

"Yes. Only when we have found a master, who use their magic to give us form, can we leave, and find a home in a new world. And there we serve them, until we have learned enough to live our own lives."

"Children by design, lead by a Mother it sounds like. Perhaps some other time, you could tell us more of this place. Yet today still have much to be done, and our time is limited."

Everything would close, once they'd all walk through, but this would give a few minutes of them to see something new and strange, but by the looks of things, ultimately harmless.

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

 

@Catpone Cerberus

"Hmm... There are several factors one would have to consider, to find much of an answer in this matter.

First off, is that it is indeed very relevant if it were an elite from your side, or this. The way you have mentioned things about where you are from, the culture is not the same, and as such, the ways that generational servitude happens may well be different. In this Equestria for instance, slavery of a sentient race is highly illegal, and as such, the kobolds would have to already be working by their own will, or have been trained to enjoy such things remotely, and then sold off in a matter that seems legitimate. An agency more than likely, which would likely need to be checked up on, to ensure things are up to speed on their end. If the kobolds initially came by their own accord, or were brought in, that is different, yet there are still normally some degree of oversight over such things, from the governments side. Lackluster stuff I would imagine, but some regular check ups, to make sure they had access to medical care, weren't in chains etc. should be recorded documents you can access.

Things do fall through the crack, but overall things tend to go very poorly, if some are suspected of enslaving an exotic, sentient being, as a servant. You should read up on the case of Zholtha Nuwahl for more specifics. Broadly speaking, a serpanther whom were intentionally kept mute, and told off as being simply a wild pet, until an expert who knew of the reclusive beings were able to prove otherwise, and the *owner* essentially lost everything, and ended up with a lengthy prison sentence. Or of Goose Chase, a noble who kept a flock of changelings as forced servants, and refused to let others interact with them, for several years. When one did break silence, the repercussions were severe for Goose. As a settlement between the family and the queen of the changelings, he were hoofed over to them, along with an undisclosed amount. His fate are unknown. Considering one of the changeling were a reported royal nymph - their word for their young - I cannot imagine anything nice.

Regardless, if we take into consideration that the system would be somewhat like you know though, where generations have served, to the point where that is all they know, we can make a few assumptions, of what happened, though I do take some inspiration from related stories I heard, with equine butlers in this. Some of those are generational too, and there are certain things that have shown to make them snap. One being that they were informed that they would all be let go shortly. If servitude to the same family is all they knew, having that faithfulness betrayed so callously, could well cause an escalation to violence. Which does not have to be in a moment of emotions, as the resentment could well fester, if the dischargement weren't immediate, but told to be inevitable.

There's also the notion of a long term plan, where some would have come to act as servants, with the implicit point of eventually turning on their employer, once the time were right. It would take some true dedication, but it is possible. Though what were the trigger, is hard to say. Could be the theft of something they had wanted returned, that took some time to get their claws on, or a sudden change in behavior from the employer, like whipping one of them or something else, that would seem a betrayal.

There is also another option I suppose, given the way you speak of your former home dimension. You make it seem as if Kobolds are not valued as real beings, seeing as you used the word enslaved. Considering you made the trek to this side, is it beyond reason to think that one or more kobolds might have done the same? I would argue no, and if such, they bring all of their experiences with them. Their knowledge of what happened to them, where they came from, which can either have them be vengeful, or thinking that they would want to stop it from getting that far, here in Equestria.

In either case, there might be a kobold from your world, that is influencing them. The servants you mention might be devoted to their employer, but what little I know of kobolds, they are the sort who pick their own over others, yes? It is not impossible for an outside influence to affect the way they see things, provided they are strong and dominant, appearing to come from a place of authority/authenticity, or convincing enough, no? I would defer to your expertise here, with the caveat that the kobolds of our dimension, is likely different in nature, to a certain extend.

As for the body, I did briefly see it, yes. It were a grizzly display, even if I have seen some look worse. His death were rather brutal, though I mostly wondered of the context. Some nobles can be rather horrible ponies, and have been known to push others a bit too far, to the point where they will be attacked in turn. Your context so far, would seem to make that somewhat less likely, but there's still some story around this, that would shed some much needed light on the situation.

I would suggest to be open to speculations, but facts and evidence would have to come first. As such, I'd say contact the family, and potential non-kobolds staff to hear how the noble in question were towards them, to see if he somehow triggered things, and then also track down and question the kobolds. As the perpetrators, they would know better than any what caused this, but perhaps there is a local gathering of their kin, that can also be questioned. Somewhere that the various workers and such would meet up at times, where we could then question others of the community, about potential motives, and whereabouts.

In fact, if this is an outside influence, we may wish to move with some gravity, in contacting others who have kobold servants. If one group were convinced to turn on their employer, who is to say that others won't follow troop? You may end up needing more space at the morgue, if things goes in that direction."

As details were scarce, beyond a visual of the killers, there were plenty that wasn't known here, and the lack of context could make or break the case. Abuse, manipulation, greed- Many and more reasons could come up, and any could be the reason for this violent act. She for one needed more context to know for certain, and that would require evidence. It might be for the best to examine the scene, or track down beings of interest, before they got too far away, yes?

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@Catpone Cerberus

"I figure it's more something about dragons having some muscle to 'em, most of the time. I'll sort it out."

She'd smirk a small amount, as she saw the way that Ruby needed to make a round, to not get her seemingly focused pursuer to get close enough to impact her. It were fleeting, as the feeling in her stomach made her les entertained by stuff right now. Maybe once they were through this, and could leave this dumb behind them, she'd be able to look back and laugh at this. Potentially after turning this place to dust, but she might not have the will or want to try, once they were actually out. Fair chance she just wanted to get away from this place, and never get anywhere near it again. Leave it to some ponies to be their issue.

When the door were opened, they'd find that the path went downwards, into darkness. No torches or anything were present on the walls, so she'd go and nick one from a nearby wall, before taking point. She were really not in the mood to examine or test things right now, so she'd only briefly look at the scribbles she'd see on the walls. Mostly showing a dark shape again, slightly feline in nature, though she'd halt before they got to the next door, as there were one thing above it that drew her eye.

A sole deer, surrounded by skulls, with the dark shape grinning widely above it, tendrils reaching towards the skulls, from the deer. Yet this one were not one with the impressive horns. It seemed more likely to be their current stalker, with a text underneath it, written in rough chiseling, as if done in a hurry. She still didn't understand the meaning, but combined with the split stone door in front of them, having a depiction of the dark, feline shape, with big wings, caught in a diabolic grin, she were having a thought rustle in her mind.

"Y'know, I sometimes hear rumors, about what happens if you try and bail on a deal with a sphinx. One said that a sphinx tried to change the terms, and got trapped in endless darkness, for a generation. I'm wondering if this here's what can happen, if you start to mess with something like that from the other end..."

There were always a lot of tales about sphinx, and what their deals meant. Most were just seen as encouraged superstition by the sphinx, to make themselves sound more powerful, but a theme did go through at times. That being that if you made a deal with them, you best keep it, or else. She always considered that one to be hyperbole, but this sorta thing, made her rethink that, and question what exactly were real, and what wasn't.

Whatever the case, she for sure knew that she wasn't gonna mess with that sorta thing herself. If this were even a possibility, she wanted no part in it.

She'd push the door open, revealing the room they were meant to go into. One with light going in, as part of the ceiling had collapsed, leaving a large, half collapsed pillar to be usable as a bridge of sorts, to get out of here again. A far more direct way, so that would have been helpful earlier. Though it did also show how this deer had probably gotten out in the first place. Same with the ones who had released him.

In the midst of the room though, were their quarry. A coffin rested on the floor, the chains that used to hold it, rusty and broken around it, and the lid standing on the side.

"Well, so far so good. Now we just need to lure him into this one, and then shut the lid, I'd guess. No idea what else would be the case but that.

If I try and keep it up, can you try and take the lead?"

She'd go over and pull up the coffin, to a standing position. It was heavy, but it'd work, and make it a bit more ready for him to go in. Then they just needed him there, and then drop it, quickly drop the lid on, and then that should be it, yeah? If not, she weren't sure anymore.

Also, the bottom room here, were by far the most spacious they had encountered thus far. There would be comfortable room for a dragoness, if the situation required it.

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@Catpone Cerberus

"The new settlements are in an expanded part of town, that still haven't had a lot build yet. Just put a marker on the outer side, and you'll have some space to expand. That part's basically in the forest, so there's a bit of room to work with, if you try and expand outwards. Its easier to show I suppose.

I'll try and hurry up, and you can go have a better look. Worse case, there's that dragoness in the forest. Maybe she wouldn't mind a neighbor, and there's certainly enough space around there, long as you don't mind the wild life."

Sure didn't sound like they wanted to be Ponyville residents per se, but y'know, they had their loners over the years, that decided to live in the forest, for some reason or another. If this didn't drag them in, she could go and lead them out to look there. In the morning, that were. She'd be less thrilled about wandering the Everfree this time of night. Some of the creatures in there could be dangerous. Others were just weird, after that other draconequui had moved into the forest... She really hoped Twilight would go and have a chatter about boundaries eventually, with that one.

She'd finish up her shift, and be out within a half hour roughly, at which point she had replaced the white coat with a dark leather coat and boots combination, with dulled spikes, and an emblem emblazoned down the right side of the coat, that looked like a sideways view of a flaming pony skull, with cracks in various bright neon colors across it, forming a pattern of a rose.

"There we go. Let's have a looksie, alright?"

It wasn't too long of a walk, as they wandered towards the outskirts of town, where they'd find a mostly barren piece of land, with some areas sectioned off for buildings to be settled on in time. Various sizes, with a few having a tent on it, to mark someone that had pulled dibs on it so to speak. There were also one place that had a home on it, per se. It looked like a shoddily put together shed, that you wouldn't think had anypony in it, but there were a faint light shining through.

A few a the plots also had the beginning of building materials and preliminary work done already, but nothing finished, beyond the shed.

"Here we go. It doesn't look like much, but it's still the early stages. It was only recently approved, to leave some room for new arrivals to move in to, so they're still working on it, though anypony's welcome to start work on their plot early, and build themselves. Like those two did, though they pretty much just took some debris to make use of, for a quick fix. I'd stay clear of them though. The little one's really cranky, and the big one seems like she'd get spooked by a stray leaf.

ANyway, there's these, but as you can see, it goes right to the current edge of the forest. There's a few more meters planned to be cut into, but not far. It's important to keep the forest as intact as possible, to protect the ecosystem, so there's a hard limit.

There's also places where you can live in the forest though. Including some finished homes, that probably need some attention, but could be livable again. Ponyville had their loners every now and again."

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@Evil Pink One

She'd answer soon enough, once she were done taking some sips of the water in the can. There's be a few looking at her confused, considering how she were planting her head in it, rather than pour a cup, but the locals got jaded somewhat easy, so while this were peculiar, it wasn't newsworthy, or a reason to start asking questions. Not currently anyway.

"Shark like smell. It smell funny, not bad. Taste not right. Water better."

Shark would lick some droplets from around her muzzle. The water was nice and cooled, so it quenched her thirst well, but she sure could do with some fishies too. Hopefully it would be soon.

"When is fishy?"

"Won't be long, he's working on it. Just making sure it's all nice and good."

The barista would have heard them, as she passed by, seemingly looking for something. Her path kept her moving on, to where the griffon had scurried off to before, leaving the register empty for now, but there also weren't a line, so she could wander off for a few minutes. Which would also be the time before their food would arrive, with Chop bringing in the two plates.

Light's were warm, lightly seasoned hay, with a BBQ sauce in a small bowl next to it, in case that were his fancy. It were a sweet variant, without a lot of bite to it, as the stronger ones were usually ordered directly.

As for Shark, hers were a bowl of grilled fish fillets, seasoned with salt, pepper, and a variety of other spices, that seemed to give off a faint smell, that didn't do much to cover the smell of fish, and vague hint of lemon juice. It were meant to be a fish dish, so the fish taste and smell should be obvious. Just not *raw fish* smell, as that would permeate the entire restaurant.

He had barely put it down, before Shark would chomp on one, and effortlessly tear a piece off, showing how tender it actually were.

"Mmmm. Good fishy. Yummy."

There'd also be some potato fries to it, but that were more of a mandatory part of the dish, than something he were aware of is she wanted. If she didn't, then Light likely would. The latter of whom he'd keep his steely gaze on, once Shark had said that she approved of the meal. If her large grin and joy nearly radiating, weren't enough of a sign.

He'd leave in a moment though, Light speaking or not. He still had quite a bit of work to do, though he'd send some glances towards Shark tooo, staying or leaving. The look made him.... Reminisce a little, about different times.

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@Lawyer Slip

She'd look on in amusement, and then amazement, as he made a small copy of her in paper. Her front hooves were on both sides of her face, where a huge, open-mouthed grin were present, making it all but obvious that she were a big fan of what she saw.

"Ohmygaws that's so adorable! Oooh, and I don't even have any sort of skills like this I can share to show off. Not unless you have a dislodged leg or something.

And this is for me? *gasp* Thank you! I'll make sure to put it in a nice and safe space.

Where'd you learn this sorta thing? Are you from Neighpon? Are you... Secretly a kitsune? Is that it?"

She'd get closer and first gently take the little figure of herself, and put it to the side, and afterwards narrow her eyes, and poke gently to the peculiar alicorn.

"*giggle* Nah, I bet that ain't it, but I heard they love making these sorta things in Neighpon. I always planned on going there eventually, along with so many other places. I barely left the hospital until I turned 14. And it was a few more years before I were properly out of there. And by then, I was engulfed in the last parts of my medical studies, to get my doctors license. When I were done, I wanted to go and explore some of the world that I've been kept from for so long. I'm having a break here in town though, to help a friend. I'll probably take a trip around, but end up back here sooner or later still. Ponyville's a nice gathering point, like Las Pegasus. Can't go and miss a visit back home, every now and again. It's important to me to see my family every now and again.

You should come see one of dad's shows sometime, in Las Pegasus. Zebra's make a fair bit of fun shows."

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@Blitz Boom

The fries were tempting for sure, but Sharks allure out classes it's charm a thousand folds.

Light would prefer not to share Sharks beauty, and seeing anyone look at her for too long would bee met by his gaze of warning.

In a way Light became paranoid and a bit over protective of Shark.

Shark's Smile would Dazzle Light and couldn't refuse her invitation to the fries.

Crunchy but soft and juicy on the inside, a simple dish but complicated procedure. But the taste is worth it.

 

Light would prefer that no one waits for him; as soon as Shark finishes her food, he'd take to go his order if there are still some left on his plate.

" shall we head back to school? I think the gead mistress needs a detailed report on what we've been doing, especially with the kits.... If anything happened to those two, our relationship to the kitsunes will get bad."

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