Aug 20, 2018 1:24 AM
treble
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Alicorn has a secret setting and I wanna find out what it is
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If it were up to her she'd go out riding a lot more.

 

It isn't dangerous - well, isn't particularly dangerous - and it's relaxing like nothing else in the world is relaxing. It's the being somewhere where almost no one could come and find her, it's the movement, it's the quiet, it's the fact that maybe it is a tiny bit dangerous. 

 

If she ever meets her uncle in the afterlife she's going to slap him for being so stupid and inspiring the whole family to such heights of overprotectiveness in his absence - 

 

- the forest was. Not this forest a minute ago. It was a different, familiar forest. She doesn't recognize these trees.

 

That's not good.

She slows to a walk. Doesn't stop, probably not a good idea to stop, but not a good idea to go charging into anything either. She has a pendant she can use to call for help. She twiddles it.

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No signal.

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Ah huh. Okay. She slows down a little more. Adjusts herself in the saddle because there was a slight flapping sound and it's probably better if there isn't a slight flapping sound. 

 

She turns around.

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There's also a forest in that direction. Some stumps that look maybe cut rather than fallen.

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She resists the urge to yell at the forest "fuck off, this is stupid" because she doesn't actually want to die. She doesn't even mutter it. The forest might have good hearing.

 

Well, okay, if there are signs of habitation she will go check out the signs of habitation. Very carefully. They'll probably know how dangerous the area is, at least. 

 

- she is wearing the useless pendant and a circlet (+2 dexterity) and a couple other pieces of jewelry that are expensive and magical and look it. She debates 'useful in a fight' versus 'makes it likelier I'll get into one' for a second and then slips them off except the circlet, which is concealable if she ties her jacket around her head. This makes her look like a bit of a lunatic but hopefully not one anyone'd be particularly inspired to fight. 

Her mare's saddle is also fancy enough to be suggestive that she is interesting. Is there mud or dirt or something about.

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Yes, given that she's outdoors.

While inspecting the forest floor for places to kick aside leaf litter she might notice that this is a really... boring forest. You could get a patch of forest like this, maybe deliberately cultivated that way with antimagic or gardening so you could have picnics in it with small children. It's samey, with just normal plants doing the normal plant thing and normal mushrooms doing the normal mushroom thing, and nothing glowing or catching fire or shifting without the wind's help or harboring a hive of sapient bee people or any such behavior, but if she looks farther it's, to the naked eye at least, all boring in all directions.

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Maybe that should be reassuring but actually it isn't. She scuffs up her saddle. 

An antimagic field of some kind would explain her pendant not working and the forest being same-y but someone with the power to do it over this range would be really impressive. Maybe it got like this naturally when someone was trying too meticulously to document the behavior of the magic things in the forest. Maybe - 

- this really isn't a useful avenue of speculation. And she's not going to disrespectfully fling cantrips at the magicless forest to determine what happens to magic in it. 

She gets back in her saddle and tries to follow the signs of habitation.

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Chopped-down trees. Abandoned campsite with cold campfire. Designs, foreign letters, carved into the bark of that one tree - maybe three symbols, depending on how "a symbol" groups and if it's writing and not a badly drawn dead dog. Braided-into-a-chain wildflowers left on a rock and dried up into faintly colorful ruffles. A milepost, and marked by the milepost, a dirt road, hoof- and foot-prints going both ways.

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...fine. She'll go left. 

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There's a branch in the road off to her right, after she's gotten as far as another milepost. She can't read the sign, but there is one, painted wood nailed to a tree pointing the way she came, off down the fork, and the way she's going.

Two mileposts later, the road quality somewhat improving at one point along the way, she comes over a rise and can see the forest give way to a barley field and the barley field yield to a farmhouse and down in the valley a whole cluster of little simple habitations all huddled together. They look proportioned for humans or similar but the architecture's rough enough it wouldn't be out of place in monster territory.

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And it's all aggressively boring. 

Huh.

She tries her pendant again - doesn't work. 

She reties her jacket around her head because it's slipping, and heads tentatively towards the village. 

 

Then less tentatively, after a bit, because this is really boring and she might as well at least get a ride out of it.

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Barley barley barley chickens pigs wheat wheat wheat house rice rice rice plum orchard house mustard greens house house.

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There's one in a straw hat feeding chickens!

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Then this could be worse! ...humans who speak Common?

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Nope! When she tries it he tilts his head and says a few incomprehensible syllables.

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After a minute of indecision she tries to pantomime out "where is the nearest location where my pendant will work".

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He clearly has no idea what she's saying but when she's gestured to the pendant a few times he points farther into the village.

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Okay. She will dismount and walk farther into the village.

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There are more humans there. Herding ducks, arguing about a bolt of cloth. She is apparently interesting but not that interesting; everyone looks, no one sees the need to accost her.

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Do they look nervous, that's not a terrible proxy for 'how hazardous is this area'.

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A little wary, but they check her hands for weapons and her face for hostility as seemingly their first and only pass, and nobody's darting around corners or behind doors.

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"Well," she says to the horse, "we are mysteriously in the middle of nowhere but it seems to be a super boring middle of nowhere so that's great."

 

Any more luck here with pendant pantomiming?

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She gets progressively waved towards a little old lady who wants to hold and examine the pendant.

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...okay. She reluctantly hands it over.

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Little old lady turns it over in her hands, squinting, tugs at the chain, holds it up to the sunlight. Eventually gets out a scale and unlocks a box and weighs out an amount of silver that would be a lowball if the necklace weren't enchanted and is outrageous given that it is. She gestures at it inquisitively.

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