Luna's Command: The Continuing Wibbly-Wobbly Saga (Topic Two, to be Absolutely Clear)

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Luna's Command: The Continuing Wibbly-Wobbly Saga (Topic Two, to be Absolutely Clear)

Post  AProcrastinatingWriter on Mon Aug 19, 2013 11:24 pm

The journey thus far had certainly been eventful, as much as one spelunking tour gone bad could be called a "journey". This, perhaps, explained why the greater portion of the party who had traveled into the deepest depths of the Canterlot Caves were now making their way out of said caves, all-too-grateful that their mission was over and done with at last.

The rest, of course, were doing what could only be called "descending" alongside an ECHO grunt (or perhaps beneath an ECHO grunt, considering his current shoulder-slung position) and were doing so somewhat indefinitely. It was very hard to believe a notion as preposterous as the one that hypothesized Canterlot might just be as deep as it was tall, but it was also becoming easier to believe with each hoof-aching, rocky-grounded , crystal-lit step.

Oh, there was no doubt about that last one at this point; these crystals that adorned the walls glowed. Brightly. They had to. What else could be providing light at these dark depths? Especially light that was shiny and sparkly like this light, but that was getting into a sort of distracted mindset that was brought about by lack of sleep, and best not to go there until these caves were absent of either oneself or one's enemies.

Almost too suddenly, the downward slope leveled off, existed as a flat plane for a few hooves, and then terminated at a stately-looking door, metal painted up to look like wood, or else real wood, but for as silly as the first option sounds...at these depths the second seems even sillier, was the problem.

Grizzle turned once more to Plug, who nodded. "If something goes wrong, I got us covered. It's cool." Grizzle, in response, shook his head a few times and turned back to the door, took a deep breath, whispered a silent prayer to a Celestia who would gladly help if be somewhat disapproving, had she heard, and opened the doors.

This was a likely what most people of sound mind would call "a mistake."

Before getting into why this would be so, the topography of the room in question should be noted. It was a large room, not circular but implying as such. It was mostly made of stone and (of course) with crystal lining the walls. Stalgmites/tites occasionally interjected with awkward statements along the lines of, say, "my existing right here is a very good idea, I think!" Which anybody could plainly see was absolute nonsense. The only artificial note about the room was the long wall, for lack of a better term - most walls didn't dip down in the center to accommodate sloping caves, after all. The wall was castle-worthy, with ramparts and other castely parts comprising it, but unlike most castles was made of stainless steel Various holes in the wall - of the cave, not the the structure that cut through it - may have been natural or artificial, but either way clearly served as the entrance to this room, what with the doors put on them. The room as a whole, a total, a sum of its parts, sort of had this undeniable confidence about what it was that anypony might look at it and say "here is the cave's deepest point" and be absolutely right, at least until some aspiring dreamer of a young colt came through looking for Blackmane's treasure and then all bets were off, presuming the dreamer had access to heavy-duty construction equipment.

Now that that has all been settled: why opening that door was likely a mistake. It didn't have to do with the structure of the cave, or any sort of load-bearing hinge. It mostly had to do with the army between the party and the aforementioned castle wall.

The group of, say, 600 armed grunts was bad enough, and then they had to include what were obviously specialists or perhaps soldiers, judging by the silver on their outfits, to bring the total to about 650. Perhaps beatable, in lucky circumstance or through clever application of heavy-duty construction equipment, but still the type of situation one wishes not to wake up to in the morning. The timberwolf battalion made things somewhat worse, but were nothing, really, compared to the gigantic metal beetles with what looked to be like cannons on their backs. Adding insult to injury were the giant creatures wearing ECHO regalia; the horses, the minotaurs, the adolescent dragons, what looked to be a chupacabra in the corner there. The gigantic betentacled things from beyond with familiar metal collars around the multidimensional constructs loosely referred to as "necks" were an excellent yin to the yang of what were obviously beings of pure magical energy floating amidst, betwixt, before the ranks, and together they were a lovely explanation of what the phrase "overkill" meant. And then the hammer came down upon the final nail in the coffin with a noise not a clang, but a voice strangely mechanical. Well, seven of them. "ALICORN ARMOR ACTIVATED," sounded those seven voices as seven earth ponies suddenly sprouted mechanical wings and unicorn horns from their thick bronze-and-jewel armor and the now-alicorns slowly floated aloft.

At the center of them all, back to the wall at the lowest point, was a unicorn. Bulky for a unicorn. Bulky for an earth pony, in fact, and tall. One would think he was an earth pony until one saw the horn, which in addition to obviously not being fake, was about twice as long as that of the average unicorn. Wearing the usual black colors of the ECHO army, but with brown collar coloration along with what seemed to be a few straps of similar color, the pony stood ramrod straight, unmoving. The rest of the army moved; turned to face the intruders, but he'd already been looking when you all came in.

It was hard to really describe the air the pony gave off, except to note this: in a room full of  very large monsters, formless magic, and godly beings with more-than-necessary dimensions, even though he was standing in the middle of a crowd and several hooves below them, he seemed taller than everypony else in the room.
"Ah. Welcome." he said, and not unkindly. Not particularly kindly, either. "I confess I was expecting more of you."




Meanwhile, the other portion of the party was undergoing a threat not as large, nor lavish, nor as well or as thoroughly described...

...but perhaps a bit more personal. They were back in the room that the last battle they'd had to undergo took place, and it looked like it was about to happen again. Five of the six griffins before them certainly seemed to think so, at least. "So," said the sixth, not a large as the others (just as tall but not as large...perhaps lithe is the word) as he gently nudged one of his fallen comrades. The silver eccentricities on his black uniform glowed strangely in the light as he lifted his head and continued his long pause. Another two seconds, and he finally continued: "I presume that the explosion that wiped out so many of these fine soldiers was your peoples' doing?"

Spoiler:
Welcome to topic two: you said railroading, I say railroadesque!

...okay, but a bit more seriously, I confess: the battle with the griffins is designed to get you guys to stay a bit longer. On the other hoof, if you manage to defeat or bypass them all quickly enough that they are done for by the time stuff starts going down, you are free to (essentially) teleport to the exit. In other words, this is my final swan song before giving you leavers *gasp* an actual choice!

Sarcasm aside, I am serious. Last obstacle, if you get through it fast enough then I won't even attempt to stop you guys. Scout's honor.


Last edited by AProcrastinatingWriter on Mon Aug 19, 2013 11:59 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Re: Luna's Command: The Continuing Wibbly-Wobbly Saga (Topic Two, to be Absolutely Clear)

Post  Paper Shadow on Mon Aug 19, 2013 11:51 pm

"I confess I was expecting less of you," replies Scorch without missing a beat...

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Re: Luna's Command: The Continuing Wibbly-Wobbly Saga (Topic Two, to be Absolutely Clear)

Post  Retrokinesis on Tue Aug 20, 2013 3:43 am

Brilliant Shimmer faces the squad, her face a mask of... disappointment, perhaps? "To be fair, the explosion wasn't intentional. I would've preferred to fight them on equal footing. Still, they fought well. And they made their choice. The one with the shield used them as a cannon fodder, you know. You should give some thought to reconsidering your line of work, or at least your employer".

She stands firm and stares directly at the presumed-leader griffon. "You don't have to make the same choice. To sacrifice yourselves for somepony that considers you expendable. Walk away. This doesn't have to end in violence... " That one she lets trail off for a few moments. "Unless you feel compelled to honor your fellows' sacrifices more than your employers would. In which case, your quarrel is with me. Those with me are civilians. They didn't choose to involve themselves in this, like you did. Like I did".

"I'm offering you amnesty. Take it or leave it. If you must have blood, however, than let this be between us". Her challenge to the leader is direct but regretful; she'd rather not fight them, but she won't allow those under her protection to come to harm.
Spoiler:
Persuasion check, if it's necessary: 16 roll + 10 skill = 26
Doubt it's enough to make them stand-down but maybe enough for a duel? Ack, I'm missing Scorch's bonus already... Razz
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Re: Luna's Command: The Continuing Wibbly-Wobbly Saga (Topic Two, to be Absolutely Clear)

Post  AProcrastinatingWriter on Tue Aug 20, 2013 3:31 pm

"A pretty coincidence, I assure you," the unicorn responds, stepping forward a little. His army (presumably) tenses slightly as he does so, almost as one. "Surrender, and you will not be harmed."

"This is the last time I trust you," Grizzle mumbles over his shoulder.

"Well, so long as all this still counts as part of that last time," Plug says, pulling some kind of container out of the dimensional pocket all ponies seem to have. He presses a button on it, then puts it away. "Keep this guy talking if you can, and either way, buy me a minute or so, 'cause I get the feeling fighting all these guys for ten seconds is going to be just as fatal as fighting them for ten minutes."




The griffin eyed Brilliant Shimmer for a long time.

"Civilians or not, by choice or otherwise, they have trespassed here, and I am duty-bound to ECHO to make certain they are captured." Another pause. Those seemed to be a frequent occurrence with this chap. "Still, it is good to see that Celestia's rank is not without honor. Guard the doors and do not interfere." This last part is directed at his fellow guards, who shoot him what is presumably an incredulous look before squakwing out various protests.

"What the-"
"You're gonna listen to a -"
"Boss, are you kidding me, we gotta-"

"Enough!" The griffin shouts. "You have been given your orders. Carry them out." And as the guards reluctantly do so, he continues. "Your civilians will also not interfere, nor try to escape. If either happens, it shall be implicit permission for my guards to join battle as well. Should you win this duel, you and your compatriots are free to go. Should you lose, I expect them to come along quietly to our holding cells. Deal?"

Spoiler:
Your eloquence gave it a bonus to just barely push your Persuasion check over the edge, Retro. Well done...also, roll initiative and choose oyur moves. The griffin got a 12.
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Re: Luna's Command: The Continuing Wibbly-Wobbly Saga (Topic Two, to be Absolutely Clear)

Post  Paper Shadow on Tue Aug 20, 2013 3:45 pm

"What happens when we surrender?"

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Re: Luna's Command: The Continuing Wibbly-Wobbly Saga (Topic Two, to be Absolutely Clear)

Post  Dusk Raven on Tue Aug 20, 2013 6:11 pm

"Flabbergasted" was not sufficient a word to describe Wandering Eye. If he had expectations as to what he was going to find, they certainly came nowhere near this. He hadn't seen so many ponies and other beings in one room before - much less had that number focused on him.

If it weren't for the unbearable pressure now upon him, he might have analyzed his foes more thoroughly, particularly the beings from beyond. Or he might have gone through his own knowledge of spells to see what might save himself and his comrades. As it were, however, he was drawing a mental blank.

He glanced over at the doors behind him, idly wondering if they could make it before the countless guns of the enemy army bore down upon them.
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Re: Luna's Command: The Continuing Wibbly-Wobbly Saga (Topic Two, to be Absolutely Clear)

Post  Retrokinesis on Tue Aug 20, 2013 6:31 pm

She nods and begins to circle the griffon, "I accept your terms". She doesn't bother to turn back towards the others, instead just nodding in their general direction, "I'll handle this. Don't interfere".

Her horn glows menacingly and she shakes one hoof idly at her opponent. "May Celestia have mercy on you. I'll even let you go first".
Spoiler:
Initiative roll: 7

HP: 30
PIPS: 4
Condition: Good

Combat talents: Adaptive Tactics (Critfisher) [+3], Platinum Regalia (Granite Axe) [-7], Blink [-2], Survival Skills [+2], Never Stay Down [-6]
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Re: Luna's Command: The Continuing Wibbly-Wobbly Saga (Topic Two, to be Absolutely Clear)

Post  deonte9109 on Tue Aug 20, 2013 7:04 pm

"This is ****. Of all of the things to happen, this is the most ****. I mean what kind of **** is it that keeps putting **** in my way. Just seriously why dont they just **** me with the longest part of their **** and just get it over with. Can we please just leave this **** place? I dont even care in the slightest what the **** is going on in these caves."
Spoiler:
Needless to say Iggy is a little mad there is one more stop on his way back to the surface. Feel free to add in your own words where they were omitted.
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Re: Luna's Command: The Continuing Wibbly-Wobbly Saga (Topic Two, to be Absolutely Clear)

Post  AProcrastinatingWriter on Tue Aug 20, 2013 7:44 pm

"I am afraid you misunderstand," the pony says, his flat voice echoing around the room like the turning of oiled cogs: heavy, clunky, somewhat metiallic but artificially smoothed and silenced for convenience's sake. "The question is not what will happen when you surrender; it is what will happen if you do not. The answer to that question is, I hope, readily forthcoming." As he says this, the unicorn indicates his...army is perhaps the slightest overstatement, but the effect is much the same.




The griffin chuckles. "Rely on Celestia if you wish," it says. "I can fend for myself."

And then it disappears.

Spoiler:
Your turn, Brilli. Don't worry; the griffin is still a potential target even if your character cannot see him.

By the way, everypony else there, if you think your character is underhoofed enough to attempt interfering and are willing to risk being caught, you may join in battle yourself, but every action will require a Stealth check of to-be-determined DC, and a single failure will bring all the  griffin guards to bear. Hardly an insurmountable obstacle, but...


Last edited by AProcrastinatingWriter on Mon Aug 26, 2013 11:53 pm; edited 2 times in total
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Re: Luna's Command: The Continuing Wibbly-Wobbly Saga (Topic Two, to be Absolutely Clear)

Post  Retrokinesis on Tue Aug 20, 2013 10:06 pm

"What an adorable trick. Sadly for you, this is a duel and not a stage magic show". She sends a wide flash of violet light into seemingly-empty space, hoping to hit the griffon with sheer volume. Her heirloom channels some of the excess energy into raising a faint shield around her.
Spoiler:
Using Adaptive Tactics (Critfisher), first option, rolling 2d8s: 6, 8

Triggers Tactical Genius (Be Prepared), 1d10 damage to the griffon leader: 4

That's a single target attack so triggering Bladespell as a reaction for 4 temporary HP.
HP: 30 (+4 temp.)
PIPS: 7
Condition: Good
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Re: Luna's Command: The Continuing Wibbly-Wobbly Saga (Topic Two, to be Absolutely Clear)

Post  RandomNumbers9041 on Wed Aug 21, 2013 4:12 am

"Cobbled, how ya holdin' up, bud? Y'okay? Cool to watch Bri fight, huh?"

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Re: Luna's Command: The Continuing Wibbly-Wobbly Saga (Topic Two, to be Absolutely Clear)

Post  AProcrastinatingWriter on Wed Aug 21, 2013 2:18 pm

"Not bad," comes the slightly pained voice of Brilliant's opponent, right before a painful sensation of...well, pain streaks across her back. "But I wouldn't suggest trying it again."

Spoiler:
Brilliant has taken 4 damage. Your turn.
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Re: Luna's Command: The Continuing Wibbly-Wobbly Saga (Topic Two, to be Absolutely Clear)

Post  Paper Shadow on Wed Aug 21, 2013 2:45 pm

"So surrender or death, huh?" comments the dragon, even though he knew that was more or less the choice all along. "Where'd you even get an army as large, diverse, and advanced as this one anyway? This pony said that he was picked up in his apartment or something, but if making armies as good as this one is was as easy as that then I've spent my time poorly."

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Re: Luna's Command: The Continuing Wibbly-Wobbly Saga (Topic Two, to be Absolutely Clear)

Post  Retrokinesis on Wed Aug 21, 2013 9:05 pm

Shimmer shrugs off the pain as the shield collapses. "You're really going to have to do better than that... " A bright flash from her horn fills the room with blinding magenta light. When it clears, the unicorn is armored. Not the functional gold of the Royal Guard but bright, shining platinum that flows like mercury. Trimmed with ermine and studded with jewels, it's barely recognizable as armor but unmistakeable as regalia. It shimmers with a faint iridescence, revealing its nature as a magical construct.

She waits a few moments for the effect to sink in before firing a ray of silvery-white light that scythes across the room and burns a line into the floor. Her smirk is accented by the glow, "Don't worry, I don't intend to!"
Spoiler:
Minor action to activate [-7] Platinum Regalia (Granite Axe).

Platinum Strike (Earth's Embrace) on the griffon: 3 damage and Brilli gains resist 2, increased to 3 by the Regalia.

Activating Bladespell to gain 4 temp. HP again!

HP: 30 (+4 temp.)
PIPs: 3
Condition: Good, Resist 3
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Re: Luna's Command: The Continuing Wibbly-Wobbly Saga (Topic Two, to be Absolutely Clear)

Post  AProcrastinatingWriter on Wed Aug 21, 2013 11:00 pm

"Ah, magic," the griffin says with another passby that leaves a scratch on Brilliant's cheek. "Easy enough to cut through, and it gets easier over time!"

Spoiler:
Brilli just took one damage - ignores armor. Not exactly a ton, but...

Gonna wait for Brilliant's next turn before an update on the other front. Why? Well, supposedly, one turn equals 6 seconds in this game, so...

Current time passed since Plug hit that button: 30 seconds
Time necessary: About 60 seconds
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Re: Luna's Command: The Continuing Wibbly-Wobbly Saga (Topic Two, to be Absolutely Clear)

Post  Retrokinesis on Wed Aug 21, 2013 11:25 pm

The griffon's strike barely phases Brilliant's shield. She sighs and raises a hoof idly, tilting her head to look at it. "That's not doing better. Really, are you going to let yourself lose to a Canterlot socialite?" She was far from being a socialite, of course, but it sounded like it would annoy her foe. And if he was already starting to make mistakes this early...

Her hoof slams down and releases a wave of telekinetic force that, presumably, strikes the invisible griffon. It rebounds back towards her and coalesces into yet another shield.
Spoiler:
Standard attack [-1] Absorption Field (Stone Strike) on the griffon leader, 2d4 damage: 3, 1. She gains that much temp. HP as well.

Activating Bladespell to do 3 more damage to him.

HP: 30 (+4 temp.)
PIPs: 2
Condition: Good, Resist 3
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Re: Luna's Command: The Continuing Wibbly-Wobbly Saga (Topic Two, to be Absolutely Clear)

Post  AProcrastinatingWriter on Thu Aug 22, 2013 4:07 pm

"Believe me, I've spent more time on this than you can possibly imagine," the pony says, and as if this was some invisible signal his army reacts, bringing teeth and claw and cannon to bear. The sound is a dull cacophony, slowly rising as a tremendous graduality. "Surrender. Now."




"Not a bad hit," says the griffin, taking another swipe at you. This one stings slightly sharper. "But I have the scent of your blood now."

Spoiler:
He's been rolling badly, but his attack bonuses are starting to come in. Plus he has one other trick up his sleeve...oh, I've said too much!

Retro, Brilliant loses her 4 temporary HP again, and you're up.
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Re: Luna's Command: The Continuing Wibbly-Wobbly Saga (Topic Two, to be Absolutely Clear)

Post  deonte9109 on Thu Aug 22, 2013 5:52 pm

"I cant tell what the hay is going on. Anypony like to tell me how all of this is going."
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Re: Luna's Command: The Continuing Wibbly-Wobbly Saga (Topic Two, to be Absolutely Clear)

Post  Paper Shadow on Thu Aug 22, 2013 11:20 pm

AProcrastinatingWriter wrote:"Believe me, I've spent more time on this than you can possibly imagine," the pony says, and as if this was some invisible signal his army reacts, bringing teeth and claw and cannon to bear. The sound is a dull cacophony, slowly rising as a tremendous graduality. "Surrender. Now."
Scorch gives his allies a look which tells them that he's got a plan, but don't feel bad if it goes bad and they have to leave him. He stands in front of the party and holds his claws up, holding the guard in one of them. "Okay, okay, you got me, but what are you gonna do with him? We did interrogate him after all."

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Re: Luna's Command: The Continuing Wibbly-Wobbly Saga (Topic Two, to be Absolutely Clear)

Post  Retrokinesis on Fri Aug 23, 2013 12:48 am

"Oh, no. How horrifying". She feigns fear in a monotone voice. "Keep talking, it's telling me where to aim". Another bolt of silvery light.
Spoiler:
Standard attack [+3] Platinum Strike (Earth's Embrace) on the griffon leader, 3 damage 2 resist increased to 3 by the Regalia.

Activating Bladespell to do 3 more damage to him.

HP: 30
PIPs: 5
Condition: Good, Resist 3
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Re: Luna's Command: The Continuing Wibbly-Wobbly Saga (Topic Two, to be Absolutely Clear)

Post  AProcrastinatingWriter on Fri Aug 23, 2013 2:28 pm

The unicorn shrugs a little. "I have no real suggestion, though I suspect the most logical thing for you to do would be to pass him off to your incoming reinforcements."

As a man (though there was a lack of those particular mythical creatures in the apparent army before the party), all of ECHO turns to the unicorn in question, confused looks on what few faces are visible. "Oh, come on!" Plug says around the thing in his mouth. "You ruined the surprise!"




The bolt of silvery light flashed off a sudden flap of eagle wings, and the griffin reappeared, grunting but only affected in a sense that bordered on "minor". Then, pulling some sort of device from an invisible pocket and pressing a button on it, the ECHO agent panted a little as a green light washed over him. "You damaged the device," he mumbled. "Ah well."

He disappears again, and a bolt of pain flashes across Brilliant's stomach - right through her regalia. "I can still damage you back."

Spoiler:
Bladespell went through, but your first attack was nullifed. Our griffin friend has done 6 damage (ignoring resistance, not that you currently have any if I'm reading correctly) to Brilliant and healed 1 of his own HP. Damage bonus has just gotten worse, by the way. On the other hoof (spoilers) it won't get any worse than it has.
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Re: Luna's Command: The Continuing Wibbly-Wobbly Saga (Topic Two, to be Absolutely Clear)

Post  Paper Shadow on Fri Aug 23, 2013 8:16 pm

Scorch turns his head to face Plug with a disappointed look. "Really?" quietly mutters the dragon, "That's our magnum opus? Reinforcements? You're breaking my heart here." He turns back to the army ahead of him. "Well, despite all the cool things he told us, we kinda don't want it. Mind if I set him on fire?"

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Re: Luna's Command: The Continuing Wibbly-Wobbly Saga (Topic Two, to be Absolutely Clear)

Post  casey1859 on Sat Aug 24, 2013 6:23 pm

I'm Still pretty hot you know
kinda tired
thirsty

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Re: Luna's Command: The Continuing Wibbly-Wobbly Saga (Topic Two, to be Absolutely Clear)

Post  Curunir on Mon Aug 26, 2013 1:23 am

Retrokinesis wrote:"What an adorable trick. Sadly for you, this is a duel and not a stage magic show"
RandomNumbers9041 wrote:"Cobbled, how ya holdin' up, bud? Y'okay? Cool to watch Bri fight, huh?"
"Definitely.  Although like she says this isn't a magic show, her combat is still quite theatrically impressive, in addition to being very effective.  The whole 'performance' is just begging for some epic accompaniment- but I'm sure those guards would consider a single note out of me as 'interfering.'"

deonte9109 wrote:"I cant tell what the hay is going on. Anypony like to tell me how all of this is going."
"Oh hush and listen- I'm sure you can figure it out.  Although I must admit the visuals are quite stunning.'"  Luthier had given up on trying to be nice to Iggy- he knew the blind pegasus could tell what was going on well enough, and it's not like he would be thanked for keeping him in the loop.

casey1859 wrote:I'm Still pretty hot you know
kinda tired
thirsty

Luthier tried to get the attention of one of the other griffons- without making any sudden moves or making it look like he was up to something.
"Excuse me?  Could we get some water for this young colt please, and maybe some ice?  It looks like we might be here a while.'"
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Re: Luna's Command: The Continuing Wibbly-Wobbly Saga (Topic Two, to be Absolutely Clear)

Post  Retrokinesis on Mon Aug 26, 2013 1:38 am

Brilliant tried to shrug-off how much that attack hurt. Time to switch tactics... "Not bad, you finally managed to do something. Let's see how you handle this!"

Her Regalia explodes in a shower of iridescent shards, raining down on the battlefield like a broken stained-glass window. There wasn't much chance of the griffon dodging that.
Spoiler:
Standard attack [-4] Shatter (Earthquake): 2d10 damage to the griffon and he can't attack allies (not sure if that includes me) until the end of my next turn and the Regalia vanishes. 10, 5

That 10 triggers her special; she gains 2d12 hp: 9, 5 = 14


Activating Bladespell to gain 4 temp. HP.
HP: 30 (+4 temp.)
PIPs: 1
Condition: Good
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Re: Luna's Command: The Continuing Wibbly-Wobbly Saga (Topic Two, to be Absolutely Clear)

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