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File: 1607486417477.png (4.97 MB, 2710x2125, The Choristers -- Tartarus….png)

 No.750229[View All]

>Last time, on HolyQuest…

>Amy, Cloak, Pryce

Salt maintains her steady and judgmental glare, even as you respond. "Finally… it seems that you get it. In the end, one Will shall prevail above the others; it is those who do not conquer, who shall be subsumed. Know that all those who enter Tartarus must understand this. And if they do not, then rest assured that they will."

Ignoring Amy's other question, Salt nods. "See to it that you pass along my question to those other members of your small army. Not for my satisfaction, but for their hope of survival."

Like Sulfur before her, Salt is engulfed in a small and dense cloud of gaseous salt, and then vanishes.


Gadds slowly turns his head your way as you make more suggestions. "…How about we take the 'expected' way down."
"Yeah," Busta says. "The Sons of God would have probably taken extra care to put up obstacles against demons that could just phase through walls and bypass all their more conventional traps and impediments. Whatever those things were, they won't be the last ones we face if we try that again."


Volkama jots down the entry onto his map, but then taps your head with his pen. As Spark gnaws on his hoof, he speaks. "Erm, young miss goddess, can't you simply bypass this lock with your dominion over physicality?"
"Or, failing that, bash it open, as your usual modus operandi," Deriva adds.
1042 posts and 10 image replies omitted. Click reply to view.


"These are topics I was not around around for discussions on, and my reasoning for being here is already stated. I trust the course of action of those that will succeed." Leather says, in a strange place between Ecclesian and party in terms of goals.



Amy shrugs. "There's a lot of smart people. Some of them are in this room. I've seen them turn people into demons and mix demons and people and make angels not angels… and then an angel again or something?"

"If all those things are possible, I don't see why it wouldn't be possible to make demons not demons anymore. Demons are just broken people. I want to fix them."


Shorthorns thinks carefully on the moral quandary of the demons' free will. "If there's one who doesn't stand down, we'll talk to them more directly. We'll figure out what it takes to get them to stop hurting other mortals, or at least help them as best we can. We don't want to take away their freedom, but we need to stop the rampage, even if we have to force them all, in order to figure out how to help everyone."

"We know our plan may have some bumps along the way, but we'll fix them when we get to them. It's the only way to help everyone in the long run!"



"I'm fine with taking away freedoms," Amy interjects. "It's kind of my thing now," she adds with a laugh.



>Mantra of Equality [1d10+4] DC-4

Roll #1 8 + 4 = 12


>"The Saviors would like to place Amy at the top of this hierarchy -advised by her peers we would like to create peace amongst the races for as long as it could last."

[amending this part of the post]

"The Saviors would like to place Mudi at the top of this hierarchy -as much to my distaste there isn't a better a candidate. Bosta has told me we aren't much different. Perhaps my scorn for her is merely scorn for when I see myself in her. We would like to create peace amongst the races for as long as it could last. But we are not interested in continuing the cycle of struggle that divides the races and faiths of this world. Plainly said, we cannot afford any more wars other than the one against Metatron or soon enough he will rob our precious world of all it's luster and leave us to sink to the bottom of Sheol."

"𝘛𝘢𝘬𝘦 𝘰𝘯𝘦!? 𝘠𝘰𝘶 𝘳𝘦member 𝘸𝘩𝘦𝘳𝘦 𝘸𝘦'𝘳𝘦 𝘩𝘦𝘢𝘥𝘦𝘥. 𝘉𝘢-𝘢-𝘢-𝘩- 𝘩𝘢𝘷𝘦 𝘺𝘰𝘶 𝘵𝘢𝘭𝘬𝘦𝘥 𝘢𝘣𝘰𝘶𝘵 𝘵𝘩𝘪𝘴 𝘸𝘪𝘵𝘩 𝘵𝘩𝘦 𝘰𝘵𝘩𝘦𝘳𝘴? 𝘛𝘩𝘪𝘴 𝘪𝘴𝘯'𝘵 𝘢 𝘥𝘦𝘤𝘪𝘴𝘪𝘰𝘯 𝘐 𝘤𝘢𝘯 𝘮𝘢𝘬𝘦 alone. 𝘈𝘯𝘥 𝘵𝘩𝘢𝘵'𝘴 𝘵𝘩𝘦 𝘴𝘩𝘰𝘳𝘵𝘦𝘯𝘥 𝘰𝘧 𝘵𝘩𝘦 𝘥𝘪𝘭𝘦𝘮𝘮𝘢. 𝘠𝘰𝘶 𝘳𝘦𝘢𝘭𝘪𝘻𝘦 𝘵𝘩𝘦𝘴𝘦 𝘢𝘳𝘦 𝘪𝘵𝘦𝘮𝘴 𝘰𝘧 𝘢 𝘤𝘢𝘵𝘢𝘴𝘵𝘳𝘰𝘱𝘩𝘪𝘤 𝘯𝘢𝘵𝘶𝘳𝘦. 𝘞𝘩𝘦𝘳𝘦 𝘦𝘷𝘦𝘳 𝘺𝘰𝘶 𝘮𝘢𝘺 𝘶𝘴𝘦 𝘵𝘩𝘦𝘮 𝘵𝘰 𝘴𝘢𝘷𝘦 𝘺𝘰𝘶𝘳 𝘭𝘪𝘧𝘦 𝘪𝘯 𝘵𝘩𝘦 𝘰𝘷𝘦𝘳𝘸𝘰𝘳𝘭𝘥 𝘤𝘰𝘶𝘭𝘥 𝘣𝘦 𝘵𝘰 𝘵𝘩𝘦 𝘥𝘦𝘵𝘳𝘪𝘮𝘦𝘯𝘵 𝘰𝘧 𝘦𝘷𝘦𝘳𝘺 𝘭𝘪𝘧𝘦 𝘢𝘳𝘰𝘶𝘯𝘥 𝘺𝘰𝘶. 𝘍𝘳𝘰𝘮 10𝘴 𝘰𝘧 100𝘴 𝘰𝘧 𝘮𝘪𝘭𝘦𝘴 𝘢𝘱𝘢𝘳𝘵 𝘱𝘦𝘳𝘩𝘢𝘱𝘴. 𝘠𝘰𝘶 𝘮𝘢𝘺 𝘱𝘦𝘳𝘮𝘢𝘯𝘦𝘯𝘵𝘭𝘺 𝘴𝘤𝘢𝘳 𝘰𝘳 𝘤𝘰𝘯𝘵𝘢𝘮𝘪𝘯𝘢𝘵𝘦 𝘵𝘩𝘦 𝘦𝘢𝘳𝘵𝘩"


Kerberos thinks and listens.


"We agree on more than I thought," Mudi adds, jumping in before Kerberos can answer. "That's the line of thought I had at first, but really, why stop there?"

She looks to Kerberos. "What you're getting at is that demons are the way they are, that things are the way they are. Trying to fight that fundamental nature is what broke your old allies. So the answer is to change the way things are. Not just in the sense of stopping wars, or convincing someone of this belief or that, of moral right and wrong.

"Some people just don't care about that. It's not that they can't, or that they simply don't have enough information to reach the same conclusion as you. It's that they know full well, and do not care. Others cannot cooperate by virtue of their nature. The Devil's Instincts – the nature of demons. Being bound to the world and to belief, operating like a trapped machine – the nature of gods. Unbreakable obedience to law and order – the nature of angels.

"The answer, obviously, is to change how things are. If someone won't obey you because they are a demon, just take away their demonhood. It's simple."

She laughs. "Though, I would see that as a half-measure. If you want them to stop fighting one another, to stop fighting you – just take away their ability to fight."

Great Voyage is plainly disgusted, while Gegenschein seems to have nothing but a light disdain for Mudi's words. Kerberos leans back, but holds his reaction until he sees yours.


I know, I remember what the King said about them and they're a last resort beyond all else. I wouldn't be asking otherwise. And that's why I'm speaking with this thread than aloud. Only you, Flow, and I know we have these, and both of their power and the King's wishes, it should be kept that way.



Amy nods in agreement to what Mudi says. But, knowing what Mudi is - that she is, in fact, one of those things that can't cooperate by their very nature - she can't bring herself to say any more on the subject.


Cloak gets back to drawing, seemingly trying to be willfully ignorant of of the beliefs of the different opposing factions for now, coming to the mental conclusion he'll figure it out later.


Shorthorns snorts, "Maaaaybe not be the time or place to say that part outloud, Amy…"

Shorthorns looks at Mudi with a similar, but veiled, show of contempt for the idea of removing their ability to fight, silently disagreeing with the notion but not wanting to divide the group in front of Kerberos and give him an opening to strike.

"The point is, we don't want to just restore the status quo. We don't want to just, make things the way they were before the Firmament broke, or even before there was a Firmament in the first place. We want to make something BETTER, to keep moving forward. For mortals and demons and angels alike. Is that not a worthy goal?"



Amy pouts. "Are you restricting my freedoms!?" she asks dramatically.


"In every place, the masters of ones respective abode have fashioned prisons to put away the criminal elements of their world. Just as the Sons of God saw fit to discard their most heinous criminals into Tartarus. This doesn't necessarily have to be our recourse however. The world we intend to build, if successful will shine as a beacon of curiosity, progress, and grandness that it will draw in the masses as most things are drawn to the promises of power. Those who wish to be a part of it must abide by the law. Those who wish to remain outside civilization may do so, and enjoy the liberties of barbarism in isolation. And should one day our new world be rivaled by another that seeks dominion over us let it be in the name of progress and not a return to a barbarous world. The bonds mortalkind makes with the extra-terrestial are broken in time fueling wars and outrage, causing cataclysm and returning the world to a more primitive state. If we could retain one power over everything- a monolithic culture to preserve the memory of our bonds- we could stop this cycle. And even if our world may be conquered again some day it will not be lost to repeat the same mistakes."


"What?! No!" Shorthorns counters accusingly. "Uh… you are, y-you're restricting your own freedoms!"


"𝘳𝘪𝘪𝘪-𝘪-𝘪-𝘪-𝘨𝘩𝘵- 𝘯𝘰 𝘥𝘰𝘶𝘣𝘵 𝘸𝘪𝘵𝘩𝘰𝘶𝘵 𝘶𝘴 𝘵𝘰 𝘴𝘶𝘱𝘱𝘰𝘳𝘵 𝘺𝘰𝘶𝘳 𝘦𝘯𝘥𝘦𝘢𝘷𝘰𝘳𝘴 𝘺𝘰𝘶 𝘸𝘪𝘭𝘭 𝘣𝘦 𝘢𝘵 𝘢 𝘥𝘪𝘴𝘢𝘥𝘷𝘢𝘯𝘵𝘢𝘨𝘦… 𝘈𝘯𝘥 𝘐 𝘸𝘰𝘶𝘭𝘥 𝘮𝘶𝘤𝘩 𝘳𝘢𝘵𝘩𝘦𝘳 𝘺𝘰𝘶 𝘯𝘰𝘵 𝘥𝘪𝘦. 𝘊𝘰𝘯𝘴𝘪𝘥𝘦𝘳𝘪𝘯𝘨 𝘵𝘩𝘦 𝘣𝘶𝘳𝘥𝘦𝘯 𝘰𝘧 𝘵𝘩𝘦 𝘸𝘰𝘳𝘭𝘥 𝘸𝘪𝘭𝘭 𝘣𝘦 𝘴𝘦𝘢𝘵𝘦𝘥 𝘰𝘯 𝘺𝘰𝘶 𝘢𝘨𝘢𝘪𝘯 𝘗𝘳𝘺𝘤𝘦.. 𝘺𝘦𝘢𝘩.. 𝘠𝘰𝘶 𝘤𝘢𝘯 𝘩𝘢𝘷𝘦 𝘰𝘯𝘦. 𝘑𝘶𝘴𝘵 𝘣𝘦 𝘤𝘢𝘳𝘦𝘧𝘶𝘭. 𝘗𝘭𝘦𝘢𝘴𝘦."



Amy groans in agreement. "That's SO true…"


"We Ecclesians are amenable to a solution much like, but, if you will excuse the bragging, still superior to either of those," Gegenschein adds.

"Though it will take quite a long while before it can come to fruition – equality with demonkind. Oh, and we'll invite the angels too, so do not worry, Chorazin, Mirror. I believe no fewer than ten generations will have to pass, before either side of today's cataclysmic wars will let down their arms… But until then, under a rule of we twelve Choristers, just judges, fair and impartial to all beings, I am confident we can reach that horizon with no need for either changing anyone's inherent nature, nor taking away anything from them. Am I oversimplifying? Perhaps… as are the rest of you. But, don't mistake me – no utopia awaits any of us. We would all do very well to remember that."

He smirks at the rest of you.

Kerberos shuts his eyes… and sighs. "If there's one thing that I don't think will ever change… it's your kind… it happens every time I find myself liking mortals."

One by one… the ten thousand hounds start to step aside… allowing you passage to the Great Seal.

"If it comes to it… I'll shut the Great Seal behind you, thread or no."

"Do as you see fit, great guardian," Living Saint Zoantharia says. "We shall take charge of our own souls."


I don't plan on dying… even if it comes to using one of these. Thank you ,Shei.
Pryce pauses to think, though of course with their connect Shei can hear/see Pryce's concern as he thinks over each tablet, the worst case scenarios of being surrounded by endless hordes of demons with no way out or allies to help. A last effort to be made to keep the masses from coming down to the Seal after the rest of his friends.
…The Image of Broken Earth.
He says in final decision


"I'd have hoped as much," Leather says mostly to himself at Kerebos' last comment, chuckling as he doesn't look up from his writing, "It's impolite not to close the door behind oneself unless there's someone else entering after you."


As Kerberos looks to them all in approval of their resolve, despite several different exact ideals (which causes Shorthorns a bit of concern for when they are made to enter Tartarus itself, but decides to worry on that for later), she looks to Kerberos as the great sea of hounds start to part, leading to the mighty seal beyond.

The white buffalo goddess bows her head in respect for the army of mighty guardians. "Thanks, though I'm not sure I qualify as mortal myself anymore. But I hope we can at least hope to live up to the standards of the Sons who came before us here."

As he mentions being willing to close the seal behind them, she nods. "We understand. Do what you have to do to keep the world above safe. But I promise you, we WILL find a way to succeed on our mission, and we will return here to see you again. And, if you want, maybe we'll bring better food next time, too?"



"I think you're just too pessimistic," Amy says with a smile at Gegenschein.

>[1d10+4] DC-4 Mantra of Equality

"Anyway, thanks for eating with us," Amy says as she gets up from her meal. "And thanks for letting us through!"

She skips over to one of the doggos and gives it a big hug. "I hope you liked the food I picked out! I know I did!"

As she lets the doggo go, she looks at it with a frown. "I still never got an answer to my question…"

Roll #1 9 + 4 = 13


"𝘦𝘳𝘮𝘮𝘮.. 𝘛𝘩𝘢𝘵 𝘰𝘯𝘦 𝘴𝘰𝘮𝘦𝘰𝘯𝘦𝘴 𝘢 𝘷𝘰𝘭𝘤𝘢𝘯𝘰 𝘗𝘳𝘺𝘤𝘦." 𝘚𝘩𝘦𝘪-𝘚𝘩𝘦𝘳 𝘤𝘰𝘮𝘮𝘶𝘯𝘪𝘤𝘢𝘵𝘦𝘴 𝘵𝘰 𝘩𝘪𝘮 𝘸𝘪𝘵𝘩 𝘢 𝘮𝘰𝘳𝘣𝘪𝘥 𝘤𝘰𝘯𝘤𝘦𝘳𝘯

"𝘏𝘰𝘸 𝘢𝘣𝘰𝘶𝘵 𝘧𝘢𝘭𝘭𝘪𝘯𝘨 𝘴𝘵𝘢𝘳𝘴 𝘪𝘯𝘴𝘵𝘦𝘢𝘥? 𝘛𝘩𝘪𝘴 𝘰𝘯𝘦 𝘪𝘴 𝘮𝘰𝘳𝘦 𝘭𝘰𝘤𝘢𝘭𝘪𝘻𝘦𝘥."


Shei-Sher heart thumps heavily for a second. He turns back to the rest of the group. To the people he has known so far as his family. Some of them will be remaining. His secuirty for those coming with isn't much better. A great pang of anxiety comes over Shei as it seems the time for saying goodbye is coming.

"Is this it then?"


In her jubilation, as Shei-sher mentions this being the moment of truth, Shorthorned Dragon's joy and pride at proving herself to the guardian of Tartarus suddenly turns shaken. She likewise looks back at the huge collection of friends they'd made along this journey, many of whom would be staying behind… and starting to realize the time of parting was upon them.

"….I… I guess i-it is…"


Pryce thinks over his choice, surmising a volcano might not be the best depending on where the confrontation takes place.
Falling stars it is then.

Shei's words shake Pryce more than his concern over the demons. He looks around as Flaming comments as well.
Despite that, Pryce can't find it in himself to admit that the time is here in front of them.



"That's a good question. A shame I didn't even get a last battle with Pryce in." Cloak frowns.


Shei puts one hoof in his cloak and retrieves from it the stone tablet of Falling stars. Shei passes it to Pryce before quickly and firmly enveloping him in a hug. "Love is the law."

Shei lifts Pryce up from the ground and squeezing tighter to crush under his farewell hug, as he exerts himself he grunts "Love Under Will."


Gegenschein just keeps on smirking. You get the sense that it will take much, much more to get through to him.
>Null: Mind

"I…" Kerberos begins. "I… couldn't tell you. It's been a long time, but… that was one of the last times I ever fought alongside Wineberry. I remember it very well… I remember thinking I saw something else, something alongside you, but… I don't recall it. Everything else I can, but not that."

"This is it, then," Gegenschein says in agreement to Shei.


Even without Kerberos' shadows, the path to the Great Seal is a slow gradient. Ancient stone, so cold under your steps, slips away, sensation by sensation, replaced with an utter darkness, a void without feeling, without substance, the further and further you walk along… an interminable tunnel it seems, made the worse by the lack of feeling. It is quite some time before you can see something at the far end… a perfectly circular shape, wrought of some peculiar stone, the likes of which you have not ever seen… dull and dim, yet seemingly lit from inside by an unseen un-light. Like the Diskos, it is a wheel, no portion of it without an etching or raised portion, scrawled with runes and glyphs of no earthly origin, that bend the mind and defy interpretation no matter how carefully you behold them.

Only one part of the Great Seal is intelligible – strange characters near its center, unrecognizable to any language; yet when you behold them, their meaning appears in your mind.

Set me as a Seal upon thine Heart
For my Love is stronger than Death

The Light Brigade double-check their weaponry, jaws set with determination…
The Spiders wear their god's indefatigable confidence…
The Witches of Gehenna look on with hope. Even Mudi looks hopeful, an expression she has not worn before…
The Choristers look on with stony grimaces… with the exception of the smirking Gegenschein…
The Saviors project no image whatsoever, openly wearing their nervousness and quiet fear…

>Divide yourselves into parties. Many sources have suggested that six is the ideal size for a party venturing into Tartarus.

>With certain limits, you can have a say in how the other parties are divided.
>Gegenschein and Galton must travel together.
>Vizsla and Mudi must travel together.
>The Choristers must travel with their respective Spook.
>Fox and Anzu cannot travel together.


Knowing Pryce is the one of their original party staying behind, Shorthorn's attention is turned to him first and foremost. The white buffalo is speechless, eyes widening at the look of the alicorn as she slowly approaches, lowering her head as she tries to find the words.

"Sir Pryce… I… I'm trying to find the words but, they're not coming to me." Little bits of tears start to well up at the corner of her eyes, which she quickly shakes away. "It is going to be hard, different, taking on this challenge without you at our side. I have no regrets with you choosing to stay up here, and, knowing what's coming, I am unsure which of us has the tougher job ahead of them." She snorts, "And, of course… I am glad that River and Zjetya will be safe under your care as well, along with Vortigern and Spitshine and everyone. But I'm…"

She sniffs, then slowly and gently bonks her head into his chest, "I'm going to miss you."


Without hesitation, Zjetya and River come in for the wing-hugs, having nothing to say that isn't said better by the tightness and love of their embrace.



Amy frowns and sighs. "I've waited for an answer for hundreds of years… And I still don't get one. Oh well… It was nice seeing you again," she says with one last quick hug and scratch behind his ears before she leaves him to rejoin the party.


Amy looks around at the others around her, growing nervous, but resolute. Then, she looks up at the seal. She knows these doors. How many time did she look at these doors from the other side, hoping, wishing, PRAYING - perish the thought - to get through them. How many times did she and countless other demons claw at the doors until their limbs were bloody or gone?

She always said if she ever made it through those doors, she'd never look at them again.

These were memories that Amy had suppressed. Even as it was decided that they would be going into Tartarus, Amy had suppressed them. Only now, seeing these damn doors in front of her once more, do they flood back in.

Tears silently roll down her cheeks. Her entire body tremors. Not a slight tremor, but her entire body shivers as if she is cold. She feels sick. She opens her mouth as if she's about to say something, but no words come out. She can't look to anyone. She can't look away from the door.

The only noise she succeeds in making is a strange, garbled, loud whimper.


Pryce is caught by surprise by Shei's hug, and the pressure from it. Then by Flaming's bonks, and the wings of River and Zjetya enveloping them.
"Shei… Flaming…" He manages to speak out, voice carrying a slight warble. After a moment, his hoofs and wings embrace his friends, returning the affection.
"There's nothing to miss. We'll see each other again. I… I know we will."

Pryce looks up to Cloak from the cluster.
"We'll have plenty of time after this mission is done, right?"
He responds, hope in his voice.


>I lack knowledge to give input.
Cloak grins and speaks with gusto, but his response doesn't relate to what was asked, "Glass would love to have you drop in at some point. Really wished I got to be there when the twins are born, but I trust you to keep everything up top safe while I'm down there. "


Shorthorn looks on as the mighty Seal slowly peels apart in a gradient, opening into a dark tunnel leading onto the circular image beyond, marked with great runes in the distances. She takes in the grandeur of the great entrance to the most dangerous plane they've been to yet yielding before them, but takes a moment longer to linger on the thought of those they're leaving behind on this moment, looking on towards the others.

"Everyone… everyone who's staying behind, I want you all to know what a difference you've all made. The things I've learned, seen… I would not be who I am today if it weren't for everyone here." She chokes back a sob, looking at Vortigern in particular as she approaches the silent matron.
"Vortigern… I have no regrets, of the outcome of our duel. I promise I will make you proud when I am in there. I just…" she reaches forward to wrap her in a hug, "I just want you to know that you were always a beacon of strength to me. I promise, when I'm down there, I will protect everyone with the same ferocity that you've protected all of us. I-I'm going to fight so hard it'll be enough for us both, so you don't have to worry about anything, okay?!"

Shorthorns smiles as she feels the wings wrapping over her, reaching up to wrap her hooves around Pryce's withers as well. "You're right… I know you are. We'll come back, and we'll all be part of this beautiful new world we created, together. So please… just stay safe until then, okay?" She grits her teeth, trying not to let a warrior-clan buffalo such as herself be seen crying so pitifully. "And we'll do the same for each other. I'll take everything I learned from you with us, so it'll be like you never left!"

As Amy starts to let the tears roll down, and feels unable to look back to the friends they're leaving behind, Shorthorns approaches her and pulls her into a hug as well, embracing the wolf-pony tightly. "It's okay, Amy. You don't have to hide it… not for anyone here."


"Yes we Will." Shei affirms before releasing the hug

Shei-Sher kneels down to Gadriel, putting a hoof on his "Gadds I know I've changed a lot. But I need you to know that I'll always be your big brother. And I will always love you. My mind may not be all there, but if you cry my name I will come barreling through the hells to steal you away from death. Now- how do you feel Gadriel."

[parallel posting because I want to fit in rp]

Shei views Amy in her sickness, with trepidation he approaches her from behind and holds her with a hug that wraps her body around. "We'll do fine."


putting a hoof on his shoulder



Amy cries more outright as they hold her. She makes a few more whimpering sounds as she attempts to form words. "I-I don't know if I can do this…" she says quietly.


"If we don't get in then the day will come the angels will leave robbing everything great about our world. And we will sink into Tartarus then regardless. We have to do this Amy. We MUST do this. You are all of my love Amy. Tartarus could never swallow you." Shei tighens the grip on hugging Amy "And you know I intend on keeping you on a tight leash." Shei whispers the sentence into her ear before playfully biting it.


"I will. I'll make sure everything up here stays in one piece for you all to get back without skipping a beat. This'll all be done before we know it."
Pryce says, trying to keep the mood high amidst the goodbyes.

"It'll be better than how you left it. And I'll be sure to catch up with her when I can."

Seeing Amy take this the hardest, Pryce comes over, putting a wing around her.
"Amy, we've only know each other for a short while, but… I know you can do this. Nothing we've experienced or been through has been able to keep you down. And look, you were able to talk down the guardian to Tartarus easily. I can't think of anypony else who can do the things you can."
Pryce says, trying to lift spirits as best he can.

As the group goes down towards the Gate of Tartarus, facing off against the boundary and last place they'll all be together for some time, Pryce looks among his friends and allies. Then, he looks to Flaming, Shei, Voyage, Tantra, the Dragon, Observer, and Hafaza.
"You all… have you decided what your god domains are?"



"You don't understand," Amy says, as she begins to hyperventilate. "Everything I do, I can do because NOTHING in this world is as bad as what's in there… I told myself I'd never go back. For at least 2000 years I kept promising myself that. I… I don't want to break my promise to myself…"


Amy's hyperventilating is interrupted by a light bit of giggling. Which only makes it harder for her to catch her breath. "You're so sweet… You don't deserve what's in there…"


Gadriel quietly nods. "I… don't… really know how to feel. None of this has set in yet, I guess… no matter how much I've thought over it, mentally rehearsed this moment, thought about what I'd say or do… it's all nothing in comparison to standing in front of the real thing. Wh-whatever I am… your bro, your… crazy, world-ending lesbian moms… I'll always love you. Whatever you're up against, there's no place I'd rather be than fighting at your side."

Vortigern, immersed in your fluff, squeezes you hard enough, wings and arms both, that you can feel a generous share of vertebrae pop. It's a comforting refreshment, in this situation of all things. You feel her kiss your forehead as well. It's muffled, but she speaks.

"I know you will… I wouldn't have conceded our battle if you couldn't. Tell me all about it once you're back, alright?"

"Power!" Hafaza shouts. "Obviously."
"Knowledge," Observer echoes. "What else would I pick?"
"Determination," Tantra says. "If I'd given up even once on my quest here… hell no, I'm not even thinking about the mediocrity I would have fallen into."
"Well, since my first pick was taken…" Voyage jokes, shouldering Tantra. "Guardianship. No matter whether I'm in the heavens or deep in hell, I shall always shield my tribe from everything that would crush them."
"Holy vengeance," the Dragon says. "I've still to crush that cluster of cowardly dragons – the self-proclaimed 'Jade Crowns of the Heavens' who reduced me to this state, stealing my name and form. Save a few for me, won't you Vortigern?"
"They're all yours," Vortigern says.

As you huddle together, River, Zjetya, Sugar, Spitshine, Onion, Renee and Estuary quietly mingle among the others, offering what may very well be their final words shared… yet there is no sense of that among them. Bravely, they put aside all worries of what may come to pass… instead enjoying final moments as one massive party.


"I can't say I know what Tartarus is like, or what your situation was back then. But, look at all the ponies going in with you. Your friends, and allies. Whatever 'bad' that is in there, there is much more 'good' at your side."
Pryce pauses, mulling a bit.
"I can't help with the promise. The best I can do is say make a new promise that you'll be back to see the rest of us who are staying up here again."


Shorthorns holds tightly, nuzzling against her adoptive sister. "I do. And you can. You're the strongest one here, Amy, I truly believe that. You can do ANYTHING."

"Of course… I know you will. Thank you, Pryce," she says, moving up to give him one little nuzzle with her nose against his cheek - an intimate exchange by buffalo standards, leaving her blushing afterwards. "For everything. A-and don't you go messing things up with your mates, or I'll bring Tartarus back with me, you hear?!"

As Pryce asks her, Shorthorns nods her head. "I think I have." She says, puffing up her chest as she wells with pride. "I am Shorthorned Dragon. I want to be known as the goddess of Persevering Flames. I won't ever go out when my light, warmth, or power is needed by others."

Shorthorns groans as she feels the vertebrae pop, but relaxes as it loosens her up, and feels better for the tight embrace. She blushes as she kisses her forehead as well, looking up as she looks down. "Of course I will. I'll share everything we went through!"

Shorthorns moves from the embrace, her muzzle twisting into a look of a pained frown as she reaches for her saddleback… her hooves grabbing for her beloved little dragon. "I… I have a favor to ask." She says, holding up the baby dragon as she stirs him from any slumber he may have been having.

"Everyone going into Tartarus, I have to be able to trust to protect themselves if needed… but Spark can't. Spark just isn't ready for what Tartarus has. And, I can't risk him getting hurt, or my distraction hurting the others… s-so…" she sniffs, "Would you… would you please look after him for me? Just until I get back…?"


"Thank you Pryce, it's been an honor. Take what I've written so far up to Glass just in case," Leather says, pulling out a few dozen scrolls of cartoonish drawings and slightly watered down descriptions of battles and adventures clearly meant to be read to children, "I'll get it bound in as a proper book when I get back, but I want there to at least be these for the kids."


Shei speaks to Gadriel, a glint of pride in his eye "An excellent response! You'll have time to fight beside me when we reach the first node. For now I think The Dragon _____ and Tantra will appreciate you at their side. I can already see Shorthorns wants to steal Voyage away from them hehehe." Shei chuckles lovingly as he points to Shorthorn's conversation with Tantra and Voyage

Shei flourishes his robe before announcing proudly after the other prospective gods have claimed their titles "I've always known what I am. I am the God of Bastards and Kids!" Shei's words are soaked with pride and humor for the joke life has played on him, ye his tone does not betray the unyielding genuinely of his response

"There is nothing in there scarier than you are when you are angry. My little witch pup."

As the saviors are gathered at one spot and once he has their attention Shei tries to communicate to them "Everyone I have something important to say, please listen. I have a friend waiting for us within Tartarus at the Hanging Port. It is one of the nodes I believe. I am greeting him on the demand of business so while it is still possible we could be assailed it is unlikely we'll come harm as I am meeting out my contract with one of Tartarus's secretaries. Once we arrive there we can gather more information and rest. So please, so we can regroup focus on the word Hanging port when traveling with your respective group. Harbor inside your intentions to head for the Hanging Port. That is all." Shei-Sher concludes.



At that, Amy smiles. She lets out a weak laugh and a sniff. "It would be better if you came with us…" she says shakily.


"I'm not strong enough… yet… But, Pryce is right. Together we can get even stronger," Amy says as her resolve shakily grows.


Amy laughs and smiles a little more strongly. "Sorry for panicking there, everyone," she says with an obviously forced grin.

"The Hanging Port?" Amy cocks her head. "How do you know someone there?"

>Amy wracks her brain to see if she can remember such a place [1d10] to remember things!

Roll #1 2 = 2


Vortigern nods, but Spark, as he slowly wakes, jumps out of her hoof, and back onto your tunic. Vortigern gently pries him off, but again he slips from her grasp, growling with annoyance, heedless of what must happen. Vortigern again, her heart clearly pained, tries to get him away from you, until… she gasps with horror…

As Lockjaw trots up and devours Spark in one bite.


Lockjaw's mouth is held slightly ajar, and inside, resting in a throat pouch clearly meant for carrying young deviljho, is Spark. Lockjaw's jaw is held secure, keeping Spark from escaping again. He pokes his eye out between Lockjaw's teeth, growling and squeaking for Shorthorned's attention.

It's no good… your mind recoils at a subconscious pain, and rebels against you as you try to explore your memories of Tartarus.

Among the other factions, it seems that groups are starting to solidify…

>Barring any objections, the other factional groups as follows:




>Holy Hours


>Supper of Crows
>Desert Lamp


>Evil's Judgment


>The Dragon

>Pausing DM side, but continue to RP as you wish


"I-If I tell you, you'll think I'm stupid." He says a bit nervous to come out and say what his business with the umbral is.


Pryce is a little surprised by the exchange, then chuckles at her threat.
"I won't, trust me. You, Rus, and Vortigern wouldn't let me live if I did."

Pryce nods, taking the scrolls in his magic to protect.
"I'll make sure Glass gets them first thing. And I'm sure the rest you write will be even better."

As they all proudly display their domain as befitting of a god would, Pryce smiles.
"Your names will be spread as far as I can reach on the surface. And, I'll have my own prayers to you all as well, to help you down there."

Pryce sighs, a half smile on his face.
"I'm staying behind, but I'll still be with you all," Pryce says, poking Amy's chest where her heart is. "In spirit, and in prayer."



"Fiiiine!" Amy pouts.


"Nothing could ever change my opinion about that," Amy says with a sly smile.


"Well.. If you must know. I'm- delivering a pizza."

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