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File: 1614508779158.jpg (3.78 MB, 2048x2048, TR Map Path.jpg)

 No.753511[View All]

https://vocaroo.com/1aVSufd6EB96

Seven months ago, five drifters arrived in the far flung pocket of reality known to the outside world as the Echoes. With nothing save for their names and the clothes on their backs, they carved out a living for themselves, beginning a journey across the foreign land, gaining new allies and new enemies alike. The winds swept them across the wilds, bringing them to a forsaken desert known as the Shifting Sands, where they met someone they did not expect: a being long thought myth, known to many as Discord. Wisely opting not to free him, or retrieve the artifact he coveted, they moved on.

In Braildorn, one of the great cities built in this world, they crossed their most mortal foe of all: Lysander, a dragon of great renown and a collector of rare and magical items. They bested him, claiming his ship as their own, and were marked as his enemies forevermore. This caught the attention of an unusual couple: Dawn Chorus, a great magician, and her knight Carabas. Mortal foes of Lysander, they joined forces with the drifters, explaining the object of his desire: the Cuckoo's Egg, a harbinger of dimensional annihilation, and the very same artifact they had discovered in the Sands. Lysander wished to claim it in the name of an entity that haunts the Echoes, known only as the Oneiromancer. With the help of Cecile Grosvenor, Lady of Braildorn, these three would stop at nothing to claim the Egg for themselves.

Fate carried them across the plains, back to the fiery Shifting Sands. There, Discord was freed, and Lysander was on his way to retrieve the Egg for himself. Not only that, but he had betrayed the Oneiromancer; he rejected the entity from Outside, wanting the Egg for himself and claiming some of the Oneiromancer's powers. A great battle ensued, and Carabas was lost amidst the sands, but the Egg was wrenched from Lysander's claws, safe with the drifters, for now.

While traveling with the Egg, the party was subject to several fortunate and misfortunate adventures including the return of the Oneiromancer to the corporeal plane. The question remained of what to do with the Egg from here; after much deliberation, a plan was hatched. They would set sail for the Isle of Glass, a forsaken, beast-infested rock far removed from the rest of the Echoes. Here, they would challenge Lysander to a decisive combat, and determine the fate of the Echoes once and for all. On the eve of their final voyage, two of their number abandoned them to pursue their own goals: the warrior Hermodur, their ally from the start, and the great warlock Black Pudding. The latter departed with a nebulous promise of his return ere the end of their ordeal.

Now, the drifters prepare for what the dawn will bring. Lysander's ship lies ahead. Below, a great volcano. Above, the stars align for a celestial event. Behind, a great storm brews, and the skies blacken over the mainland.

The stage is set for war, and to the drifters, fate's finger beckons.
509 posts and 11 image replies omitted. Click reply to view.

 No.755797

>>755793
"I don't understand how you think this is my fault, though. The curse that turned him to stone wore off on its own. He gathered his power on his own. The only thing I did was destroy the thing using his power to hold the spirit of a friend." I glare at her. "Something that I didn't just decide to do on a whim. There's no way you can tell me this is worse than the Oneiromancer getting the egg."

My glare falls away as she threatens to destroy me and I swallow a lump in my throat. "Uuuh…" I study her for a second before finally saying, "Persist?"

 No.755813

>>755795
>>755797
"AN ARRANT FOOL THOU REMAIN'ST, WHISPERER. THINE DESTRUCTION OF THE CHAOS RELIC HATH DONE NAUGHT BUT RENDER UNTO HIM THAT WHICH IS HIS. HE IS STRONGER FOR THY SACRIFICE, BEYOND THY COMPREHENSION. AND THE CONJUNCTION WILL OCCUR NOT BECAUSE OF THE NATURAL ORDER. BUT BECAUSE HE WILLS IT SO."

There is a pregnant pause as the implication of this begins to sink in. Violet speaks up. "…So what is the Conjunction, then?…"

"'TIS A UNION OF TWO WORLDS, BROUGHT ABOUT BY THE BANISHMENT OF THE CUCKOO'S EGG. AND THIS WILL NEVER BE UNDONE."

"NOW. THE MOUNTAIN WILL AWAKEN. THE ECHOES WILL BE FOREVER CHANGED ERE THE SUN RISETH. FOR GOOD OR ILL, FOR ORDER OR CHAOS. AND THOU SHALT PERISH HERE, OR CONTINUE TO EXIST IN THIS WORLD ANEW."

There is another ear-splitting peal of thunder, and the room flashes brilliant white. When it subsides, the nature deity that was once Black Pudding has vanished, leaving only a scorch mark from the lightning bolt that just manifested in the small room, along with a faint cloud of pollen.

"…Well, that just happened," says Aurora awkwardly.

"I'm rather lost here," Gawain chimes in, looking uncomfortable. "I'm starting to feel like we're rather in over our heads…"

"Th-this changes nothing." Dawn looks shaken, but determined. "We need to focus on defeating Lysander. We should attack from the air if we can. I… I think I might have an idea of what to do."

"Right. Come what may, we still have a job to do," Violet nods with quiet determination. "We need to get Aegis and Silver out of there. Worry about this Conjunction thing later…"

 No.755814

>>755796
>>755794
You try to lift the crates, but it's extremely difficult to carry them with no effort. They're deceptively heavy for their size. Marisol opens one cautiously and peeks inside. Metal… For the automatons?… I don't know if your plan's going to work, Aegis…

Over at the small crowd of crewmates, your antics grab the attention of one of them, a tall, bony unicorn with a severe looking face. He looks important; doubtless a taskmaster among the crew. He breaks away from the group and starts making his way over to you with an inquisitive frown. "Oi! What are you lot doing!" he calls. "Who said you could be over there?"

 No.755815

>>755813
I run my hand across the top of my head and let out a long breath. Welp. Why do I have the nagging feeling that this really is my fault? "At least it wasn't Kairon?" I say with a wry smile.

I take a deep breath and turn back around. "Alright. Yeah. We have other stuff we gotta do." I turn my attention to Dawn. "Wacha got?"

 No.755816

>>755814
Aegis stops and stares calmly at the Taskmaster ''Sir. We're here to load these up with extra ammo for the guns and cannons. Some nonsense is going on out there and its better we are prepared to fight anything that comes our way''
'1d10' lugging roll

Roll #1 2 = 2

 No.755817

>>755813
"So… when they say both worlds, do they mean here, and back where we came from? I'm, uh… at a loss."

He shakes his head, before huffing "But, right. Let's go get Aegis and Silver."

 No.755818

>>755816
>>755814
"Indeed! Lightning and voices from the sky, whatever is going on above we'll need easier access to the munitions!" I reply, Saluting the taskmaster.

[1d10+2] Persuasion

Roll #1 6 + 2 = 8

 No.755819

>>755816
>>755818
Marisol's words fail her, so she simply nods. The taskmaster stares at you long and hard. You're not sure if he's buying it or not.

"…Well, you're in the wrong place. Don't you know the difference between ammunition and repair materials for the Brigade? Now quit messing around and fall in line. Captain's ordered all hands on deck. We're moving." He starts stomping off to rejoin the rest of the bustling crew, looking back to make sure you're following.

>>755817
>>755815
"Here's my idea: we maneuver the ship above Lysander's, staying high above to avoid being spotted, and I open a Door for you all to the ship itself. Aurora and I stay behind while you make sure they're safe. We coordinate through our mental link, and once they're safe I open a Door again to retrieve them. I… also have an idea of how to deal with the ship once everyone's safe. But I don't think I should share it yet…"

Gawain thinks. "It's very risky. We're hopelessly outnumbered by his forces. We'd have to move as fast as we can. Coordination with them would be crucial."

"I don't have any better ideas," Violet remarks. "Whatever we decide, it should be quick. That island's going to blow any minute now." As if to prove her point, you hear a low rumbling coming from across the waves.

 No.755820

>>755819
>>755818
Lets go along with it. Aegis calls out through the mental bond If we trying insisting it might be suspicious, plus we still dont have a solid plan of what to do once we are in the munitions room. Keep a low profile for now
With that, Aegis follows the Taskmaster. ''Yes Sir.''

 No.755821

>>755819
"Yeah, any minute- it'll be really, really bad, too. Let's be quick."

 No.755822

>>755817
>>755815
We are currently moving to the Deck, surrounded by the enemy, but under a disguise, no suspicion yet. Aegis's voice rings through the mental link.
I would like it if you kept me informed on what your plan for getting us out of here will be.

 No.755823

>>755819
I nod. "Yeah. Sounds like a plan. We should check and see if the storm is still goin. Might have an idea to keep the deck guns covered, at least. Doubt the rest are even able to fire at us if we're right above em. I imagine there's a reason you don't wanna say anything, so I trust you about that." I cock an eyebrow. "Mental link?"

 No.755824

>>755820
>>755819
'The captain'? you don't suppose he means Lysander?

"Yes sir!" I reply, following behind.

Best to hide further in the back then, avoid anypony spotting us..

 No.755825

>>755820
>>755824
Almost certainly, Marisol thinks to Silver. We should try to give them the slip.

You are shunted into the bustling group as they move out. It's stifling to say the least; the iron halls of the ship are cramped and uncomfortable enough without being pushed and shoved constantly by rough looking brigands and cold, metallic automatons, which the taskmaster referred to as the Brigade. He barks orders over the crowd, yelling at the grumbling group to get a move on. "Come on, move it you maggots! To the top deck! Captain's waiting for us! We don't have all day!"

As you move out of Cargo Hold 3, you pass a connecting hallway. Some signs indicate it leads to the cabins, as well as the magazine where the munitions are kept, the officers' quarters, and maintenance for the Brigade. Marisol gives you a meaningful look; it's going to be hard to slip away without someone noticing, given the circumstances. Maybe some sort of distraction?…

>>755823
"Oh. You wouldn't have been privy to that. Zunden's connected our minds so we can communicate and coordinate. …I don't think we'll be able to extend it to you or Violet in her… absence. Sorry."

>>755821
>>755823
Aurora nods. "Let's do it."

She closes her eyes, and the ship moves out, soaring higher. The storm seems to have eased up, just a little, though the Berrengaith certainly doesn't seem to intend on making this easy for you. It's a bit easier to see, though. The Fortune moves upwards out of the water, and before long, from the upper deck you can look down and see the Vindicator below. It begins to strike you how massive the ship really is; more of a floating base than anything.

"Guess this is it," says Violet, sounding slightly nervous. "Let's do this as quickly as we can. I don't want to spend any more time down there than we have to."

"I'll start focusing on the Door," Dawn nods. Her horn begins to glow silver as she charges up her signature portal spell. "Someone please let them know we're on the way. It will be much easier for us if we can coordinate a meetup."

 No.755826

>>755825
"Well. Shoot. Sounds useful, but I guess you work with what you got." I slip my mask back on and tuck my hands into my pockets, waiting for the door. While waiting I try to summon three rats.

[1d10]Improvise Summon Minion

Roll #1 8 = 8

 No.755827

>>755825
>>755822
>>755824
"We're on the way, so try to get somewhere for a decent escape. Dawn's making the door- err, getting it ready."

 No.755828

>>755824
>>755824
I have an idea. Master Silver, at my sign, begin moving. I will turn their heads while you make your way down the hallway. Dont worry about me or Marisol if we are not able to follow you, its much harder for us to slip by unnoticed. Now, ready?
Immediatelly after, Aegis performs a simple magic trick, producing loud banging metallic sounds and what sounds like gunshots, all coming from the opposite direction to the Connecting Hallway

 No.755829

>>755827
We're working on it. Trying to get to a safe spot first

 No.755830

>>755825
Once the effects from Aegis' magic manifest, I step back and slink down the opposite corridor towards the magazine.
[1d10] Stealth

Roll #1 7 = 7

 No.755831

>>755826
You summon a trio of large, bristly rats with glowing red and yellow eyes. They seem to obey your every command.
>+1 to all actions with this minion

>>755827
>>755826
Dawn opens the Door; you see a silver glimmer appear far below, on the Vindicator's deck. Your companions prepare; Violet brings her swords together into a twinblade, while Gawain cautiously unsheathes his zweihander and adjusts his armor.

"We'll stay here and try to hold our own if they spot us. Be careful down there," Dawn urges. "And good luck."

>>755828
>>755830
Marisol nods in assent, waiting for the signal.

As Aegis performs her illusory trick, a great commotion breaks out as they all reach for their weapons and start to scatter like ants in confusion. A Brigadier starts sounding the alarm, and the crew begin moving in that general direction. Silver and Marisol manage to slip away in the sudden distraction, leaving Aegis to try and escape…

 No.755832

>>755831
Aegis gives it her best attempt to slip through the crowd after ensuring the other two make it
'1d10'

Roll #1 9 = 9

 No.755833

>>755832
Aegis manages to join them. The three of you wait until the commotion dies down and the coast is clear. That was close. Good plan, Aegis. Now let's see what we can do in the magazine then get to a safe spot so we can get out of here. I have a bad feeling about this.

 No.755834

>>755833
I as well. Lets get this over with quick before we are found
Aegis makes her way to the magazine with the others, relaying her location to Dawn as they go

 No.755835

>>755831
Freed from the larger group, I follow Aegis to the magazine

>>755834
Excellent work, Aegis. But what of the plan now? Perhaps some long fuse and a mad dash to the door?

 No.755836

>>755831
I sigh. "Times like this make me wish I had more weapons. The rain and wind are gonna really gonna limit what I can manage." I unsling my still primed rifle. "Welp. Let's do it."

 No.755837

>>755835
That was the plan yes. I was hoping we could get Master Norvegicus down here, even if for just a moment, so he could use some explosives, unless your alchemy work let you discover how to make your own explosive brews. Or something else equally devastating?

 No.755838

>>755831
"Right. Be ready for anything, everyone." the stallion says, stepping through the portal.

 No.755839

>>755835
>>755834
You enter the magazine. It's a spacious room with a very low roof. The walls are lined with stacks of cannonballs, crates of ammunition, disassembled artillery, and stocks of gunpowder. It is dimly lit; it's hard to see without a light source. Hmm. Let's see what we can find here…
>roll Perception

>>755836
>>755838
You, Gawain and Violet step through, exiting onto the upper deck of the Vindicator.

Immediately, you are soaked by the unrelenting rain. The deck stretches on for several dozen feet, made of cold iron and steel. It'll take time to sweep this place. You can see several points of interest:

Along the sides here are what look like lifeboats, with rope and chain contraptions keeping them fastened and suspended.

Directly ahead, at the fo'c'sle, are the twin smoke stacks. There seems to be a doorway in between both that would lead downward into the bowels of the ship.

At the opposite end is a similar structure, only this one seems to lead to a large hall of some sort. A storage area, perhaps, or the mess hall.

Finally, directly behind you is a multi layered structure with an observation deck at the very top. The interior appears to be quarters of some sort, or some other room.

"Lady Aegis said they were hiding in the magazine," Gawain comments, puffing up slightly and hunching in the rain. "Perhaps we should find a way below deck? Towards those smoke stacks, perhaps."

"That big structure there seems promising as well," Violet comments, gesturing towards the layered construct directly behind you. "Seems important, at least."

 No.755840

>>755839
Aegis conjures up a wisp of light to illuminate her surroundings as the group investigatesStay close to me
'1d10' percetion

>>755838
Be careful up there. There is a chance you might run into the crew, as they just recently began moving to the deck. They were all on edge too after an alarm sent them scrambling, so they might be searching.

Roll #1 3 = 3

 No.755841

>>755840
If it comes down to it, I can stun them for a little bit- not for too long, but long enough to tie 'em up and gag 'em, maybe.

>>755839
Let's find the others, first- we need to get below deck quick, or maybe wait for them to get above deck and slip down behind them.

 No.755842

>>755839
Near aegis' light, I try to peek through the crates for a fuse or something similar.
[1d10] Perception

Roll #1 4 = 4

 No.755843

>>755841
There were at least 30 of them in the hallway, including the Husks. Master Rabi, I suggest you avoid them completely

 No.755844

>>755839
"Yep. I like the idea of moving toward the smokestacks." I look around at the lifeboats and hum. Finally, I click my tongue and the rats each poke a head out of a pocket. "One of you stay here with me. Two of you stick around on deck. Go around to each of these lifeboats and chew a huge hole through the hull. Make sure it's shaped weird, not just a circle. Somewhere either impossible or at least really hard to fix up." I pause for a moment and rub my chin. "Leave one untouched." I look around and pick one completely at random, making a mental note as I nod toward it. "That one."

"Alright. Magazine it is." I begin walking toward the smokestacks as two rats jump out of my pockets and scurry to either side of the ship toward the lifeboats.

 No.755845

>>755843
Right. I'll avoid them, then.

 No.755846

>>755840
>>755842
You don't manage to find anything of the like, but you do find a matchbox in a drawer. Should be good for causing some fireworks when the time comes.

From somewhere nearby, coming from outside, you hear a faint sound of clanking metal. It's not just the familiar groaning of the ship either; you hear slow, heavy, deliberate footsteps heading in your general direction. It sounds like someone or something very big on patrol. Marisol freezes and reaches for her shortsword, crouching out of sight.

>>755841
>>755844
Two rats squeak in acknowledgement and scamper off to do Norv's bidding, scuttling up the ropes to cause some mayhem. The third stays by his side loyally. "What are you sparing a lifeboat for?" Gawain asks with mild bemusement.

Violet looks over to Rabi as he communicates mentally. "What are they saying? Are we in trouble?"

You head towards the door in the smokestacks. It seems to be locked from the inside, unfortunately; Violet jiggles the handle to no effect. "Hm. Maybe we should try another way in. We could break the door down but someone's sure to hear it if we do."

 No.755847

>>755846
"Guards- lots of them, coming up to the deck. We'll want to avoid them."

 No.755848

>>755846
"In case something goes wrong and we need one," I tell Gawain. "Always a chance. I'll take care of it on our way out if we don't need it."

>>755846
>>755845
I deadpan. "Really? You guys are talking? Please, keep the rest of the class filled in, would you?"

I look over the door. "Maybe," I say. "But there is the storm still going on. Guess that wouldn't make a huge difference if we have to bust it down." The side of my mouth twitches. "Unless-" I pull out a grenade, toss it into the air, and look around. "H'mmmm…" Crouching down, I think for a moment. "Anyone got a match or something else you can light or spark with friction? Could use my striker but I'd like to hang onto it. I have an idea. Not a subtle or stealthy idea, but definitely one that should deal with some crew and cause some chaos and confusion. It'll take just a sec to set up."

 No.755849

>>755847
"They say from where?"

 No.755850

>>755846
That's likely a Husk. But why here? Aegis asks through the mental bond as she tries to hide amidst
the darkness
'1d10'

Roll #1 5 = 5

 No.755851

>>755846
pocketing the matchbox, I duck for cover behind more of the boxes, listening for the heavy steps.

>>755850
Not nearly enough of a stir if they found the actual crew. Perhaps a standard patrol?

 No.755852

>>755849
>>755848
"Right, you decided not to hop in the mental link- guards from below deck. They're on alert, so we can't talk past them. They came through while they were heading to the magazine."

 No.755853

>>755848
Holding action. If nobody has a match or anything I use a piece of unending sinew to tie my striker closed on the grenade. When the door opens the striker sparks the wick.

[1d10]Improvise

Roll #1 9 = 9

 No.755854

>>755852
"Hey, I wasn't even there! I was-" I clear my throat and ease up a little. "Preoccupied."

>>755846
After rigging the grenade I take a deep breath and yell, "Lysander is a cowardly fake mummer dragon!"

 No.755855

>>755851
>>755850
You get to cover. As the footsteps approach, you hear something else. Labored, rattling breathing, echoing from within a hollow shell. Soon enough, he comes into view; the mechanical undead creation that was once Carabas lurches past. He seems wounded, as if someone dealt him a heavy blow, yet you can't see any signs of damage. You hear the constant sound of small gears and clockwork whirring and ticking from within his black iron shell, metal creaking and rustling as his wings twitch and shift.

He seems to be going to one of the other rooms nearby; as Aegis shifts into her hiding spot, however, he changes trajectory. Shambling now towards the magazine, he extends his mechanical claw forward, almost like a zombie. It's like he can sense things through it. He seems to be searching for you, but can't tell where exactly you are.

>>755847
>>755853
Violet and Gawain check themselves, but shrug. Neither of them have anything on them that fits the description.

Norv rigs the trap and yells. Nothing happens. There's a bit of an uncomfortable silence. Violet raises an eyebrow and Gawain blinks. "I, er, don't believe they're coming this way just yet." He takes a step back and gets ready to try and bash the door down. "Perhaps the simplest solution would be the best. Shall we?"

 No.755856

>>755855
I grumble and pick my stuff back up. "Woulda been neat if they walked through and popped it. Give us a nice little headstart. Won't be fair if they didn't hear me yelling but hear the door." I step back and let someone stronger than me do the honors.

 No.755857

>>755855
"Bash it down, sure- Don't want to wait too long."

 No.755858

>>755855
Motion detection? Aegis speaks through he mental bond as she remains still and holds her breath, attempting another trick as she creates a trail of small sparks, leading Carabas away from her and out of the room

 No.755859

>>755857
>>755856
It takes him two tries to smash the door off its hinges, opening into a long, winding stairwell. He dusts his hands, looking proud of himself.

Entering the stairwell, you can see that it seems to be connected to an area at the bottommost layer of the ship. The hissing and blasts of heat that emanate from it imply this connects directly to the ship's boiler. Violet shoots a glance at Norv; they seem to be thinking the same thing.
>roll Perception

 No.755860

>>755859
>Perception [1d10]

Roll #1 5 = 5

 No.755861

>>755855
Not risking moving even to ready my weapons, I hold still as this mechanical Carabas scans the room.

>>755858
Let us hope so.. you hear, Silver holding stock still nearby


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