5823/The Pillars of Avarice

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The Pillars of Avarice
Date of Scene: 22 April 2018
Location: The Layered Deeps
Synopsis: Pending
Cast of Characters: 6320, Leyanne Mace, 6336, 6331, Nobunaga, Mairead Sandilands, Twilight Sparkle, Kotone Yamakawa


Hemlock (6320) has posed:
Long ago, the Kingdom of Midasmount was renowned for its vast riches, to the point that they had made their walls of the finest steel coated in gold, that jewels adorned their walkways, that the kings lived in absolute excess. However, Midasmount suffered infighting and catastrophe, and the cavern eventually collapsed, becoming a ruin. Obviously, treasure hunters tried to loot Midasmount, but none ever succeeded with much, and those who survived simply said 'turn back' and not to mess with the kingdom.

A distress call went out, however, after a scout team for a kingdom in search of new settlement after their tunnels collapsed went missing and set off a signal. They were able to get the message across that they were in danger and needed help, but little else at first. Eventually, another signal would come out. "...Monsters, monsters, they've got us pinned down, someone-" before it'd cut off.

The tunnel entrance is pretty open and cleared out, what with the various expedition teams in the past. Getting to Midasmount isn't difficult following various maps and the coordinates, with only some issues with bats in the path of travellers. The area isn't known for monsters, and no one's ever described the threats inside...so what could be there? Once actually reached, though, Midasmount is a sight to behold.

The front gates of the kingdom still stand tall, a massive wall of steel and stone, coated in shining gold, gleaming and untarnished despite the years. Dazzling crystals and gems imbedded into the rocks with steelwork, illuminated by rivers of lava that flow in channels that must have been hand-carved. Past that, though, everything is entirely dark. The gate seems to have been crossed with ladders and climbing on the rocks, as it has no damage to it. Infact, everything that can be seen with light is startlingly in good shape, which shouldn't be possible.

And then there's the screams, beyond the walls. That sounds...urgent. As does the eerie feeling of being watched as you get near the gates.

Leyanne Mace has posed:
Leyanne Mace arrives at the location astride Skrat, her Arkadyne model 14 Cavalry charger motorcycle. Tunnels? She's used to riding through tunnels. Most of Mars' highways are underground, so she barely slows down, simply activating all eight of Skrat's powerful spotlights. He's a big, wide-wheeled all-terrain bike. The mouse has little idea of the terrain, nor what she's been facing, but someone needs help and so she's powering towards the location.

"Yo, help is on the way, hold on now. ETA 10 minutes." She calls into her radio. "It's a little bumpy at the moment. Anyone able to tell me what you need help against?"

While waiting for a reply, Tiny turns down her music - hair metal, of course, because she's riding - and continues to weave through the tunnels, opening the tap further. Skrat's gas turbine screams loudly. Tiny blinks. "Woah, bridge is out... landing zone sighted..."

When the tunnels launch her bike over a huge chasm with lava at its base, Tiny can't help herself, pulling a Superman off the back of the huge bike before getting herself back in the saddle. She barely makes the landing, her echoing cry of delight briefly louder than the engine. Anyone following Skrat's red tail-lights down here will quickly get the impression that the mouse is nucking futs.

As the big bike arrives at the city of gold, its headlights making the city shine brightly. Several of them are switched off, after a cuss, and the bike pulls to a halt underneath the massive gate. She pulls off her helmet as she hears the screams, extending her antennae out at 45 degrees, and her ears to their widest, as she tries to get a general direction to move once they're through.

Zerrawn (6336) has posed:
    Hearing the radio's calls for help was enough to intruige and pull the attention of Zerrawn, the Emperor's Wrath. Flying in on his proto-type fighter, the Fury, he lands nearby and makes his way on foot, only to see Tiny making an awesome superman air trick. Smirking lightly, he gathers up his strength and literally HURLS himself across the chasm, landing behind her. Walking up next to Leyanne, he gives a nod. "Impressive stunt."

May (6331) has posed:
May was not, in fact, in the caverns before the call for help. But as soon as she heard about the problems, with people calling for help, she came as fast as she could!

'As fast as she could' is pretty fast... sometimes. May is extremely fast in straight lines, especially when the tunnel is more or less flat; she can go at a full gallop then without fear. She has to slow down a little bit when she's on rougher footing or has to navigate winding caves, and she has to slow down a lot when she has to do both at once.

At least she can jump crevices well when she's at speed, so there's that.

What May cannot do is open a pair of gigantic gates, so when she sees them in the distance, she starts to slow down. She picks up a little bit when she sees someone else under the gates, clearly trying to figure out how to get inside it. "There's ladders," she says, helpfully, in case Leyanne and that other guy was moving too fast to see them.

May is looking for a way in that does /not/ involve ladders, because, well... she has problems with that. Ladders are her secret bane. She backs up several yards and shades her eyes, looking up at the walls. Maybe if she gets a grapple and a rope, she can use that along with a ladder...

Nobunaga has posed:
    Bridge is out. Standing near the edge of the precipace between the greater caverns and the city itself, a petite black-haired woman cradles her chin. A great red cape billows in the updrafts created by the heat from further below. That same cape whips wildly when a mouse on a motorcycle whips past her, jumping the chasm without hesitation. Oda Nobunaga's eyes drift up at the stunt-performing alien, then back to the gap itself. Her hand extends, "A mere precipace will not stop the Demonic King of the Sixth Heaven..! Behold, the Demon King's Three-Line Formation!"

    Light bursts out from around Nobunaga's feet, solidifying into countless old-style rifles. These swing around, lengthwise, and then... cram themselves together. The woman steps onto the makeshift raft--the guns float fine on their own, after all, so this much is nothing--and crosses the bridgeless chasm with her arms folded. What guns are not used in her crossing simply float around her, adjusting their aim to follow her gaze.

    At the opposite side, she steps down, rifles dispersing into the cloud of firearms lingering above and behind her, "A city under siege. From within, by the sound of it." Crimson eyes shift to the gate, "We must gain entry to assist in any capacity."

Mairead Sandilands has posed:
    Mairead was in Equestria helping Twilight Sparkle and the ponies setup for a festival and having a talk with her when the notice of an alert came across. Thinking, she summoned her IS as she stood up and took flight for the Warpgate, with Twilight in tow or carring Twilight Sparkle, whichever she prefers. With her IS, Mairead is looking at the various sensor within her eyes due to the link she has and can see all directions as well. "Amazing," she says to herself in her Scottish accented voice as she checks her weaposn and gets ready for whatever.

    "ETA 12 minutes mark," comes her response as she flies up to avoid the creatures here. 12 minutes later, she is high enough to avoid many things "That's a big ship," she comments to herself as she literally angles down on a dime and heads for the landing zone and sees two as she stops and lands with ease next to them. "Hello," she states as she stands there and places the Equestrian down (if she was being carried.)

    As she looks at those here, she blinks as she sees the bridge and the gate, "I can open the gate and carry ye over if needed," she mentiosn to them.

Twilight Sparkle has posed:
     Twilight Sparkle was in the middle of town decorating when she heard the distress call, and thanks to Mairead they arrive pretty quickly. The purple unicorn hops out of Mairead's arms before galloping inside. "Hang on! We're almost to you!" she exclaims over the radio as she makes her way inside. The gate gives her a few moments pause, and then she notices May and others around. "If you all gather around, I should be able to teleport us into the city." she calls to the others, her horn already starting to glow in preparation for the spell. She seems a bit surprised as she sees May and ends up staring a bit. She's seen humans and is a horse, but has never seen the two mixed!

Kotone Yamakawa has posed:
A Call for help has gone out, Kotone was in rage and has respondsed, her ship was not able to land and reach such a place, so she telepeotte down to the nearest enteace. After that? She broke into a run. She doesn't mess around here, she's running about as fast as a car might go on city street and she's not showing any signs of stopping. She ahs some gear on her but she'd not had much time to bring too much kit with her, she's go what whe had loaded in the matter maniplator at her hip and a satchel across her back. From which hung a SMG of some sort. She kept the move on though. It does not take her long to arrive on site and she skids to a halt, the heat is hot here but oddly she does not sweat at all and she has left some divots in the ground where she came to a halt.

"I picked up the call for help, I'm Kotone Yamawaka I'm with the Paladins."

Hemlock (6320) has posed:
Beyond the ladders and ropes used to climb, there's some rocks that are a bit rough to climb, but certainly doable for May, if slightly stressful. These rocks can also be surmounted by the humans in the group as well at a similar difficulty, being a little bit steep, and needing to actually jump to the gate, but what is an adventure for?

Whether the group climbs, teleports in, or blows or forces the gate open, they manage to get into the main walls of Midasmount. The streets of the kingdom, once lit up with flashlights or similar equipment, appear as if they've been paved recently, the jewels coated into them as if they've only just been placed. Probably noticed immediately is the shining castle in the distance, illuminated by the waterfalls of lava on either side of it. Made of metal and stone, it's notable for being supported by four massive pillars of solid gold. It doesn't seem like it's aged a day, much like the rest of the city-kingdom.

Those who fly over and try and open the gate will find something startling - a corpse of a man, lying in a pool of blood, his face torn off by something, and several long, thin wounds all over his body. He had reached for what appears to be the levering mechanism of the gate, and is slumped over it. His death appears to be very recent, as if it he just tried to flee and open the gate in the process.

The screams continue down what appears to be a market district, and Leyanne's able to track the direction. As they walk past the gemstones in the streets, they actually light up, some sort of magical lighting system that only lingers while they're walking directly over them. Lantern-poles are entirely pitch-black, sadly, so this ambient is the only light they get. Up ahead, a woman with a radio is fleeing something, but there's nothing to be seen. As she runs towards the group, apparently fleeing the direction of the castle, she shouts out. "Avoid the lights! The shadows, the shadows-"

The shadows the group cast warp and shift, dying into a gold and black hue as they basically /stretch/ out of the ground, flat, amorphous creatures. They move to attack at all around them, the biggest ones going for the IS and Leyanne's vehicle. They stretch out sharp, tendril like limbs, and move to slash into those around them, trying to grate through them, strong enough to tear through the steel of the vehicles if allowed to. And as they do, whispers come in across, easily audible by everyone.

"What will sate your greed?"

Zerrawn (6336) has posed:
Zerrawn tilts his head at the door curiously, before extending a hand to test it and uses the Force to push the door open far enough for people to enter through if they with. "Avoiding the light might be a problem..." he says to the woman. As the creatures take form, he draws the cylandrical hilt of his weapon from his belt. With a press of a button and an all too familiar POP-HISS, the crimson blade and light from his lightsaber illuminates his form. He also begins wrapping himself in rage and hatred, enough for it to be palpable to everyone nearby.

Leyanne Mace has posed:
Leyanne Mace grins a bit to Zerrawn. "Couldn't help myself, mate." She replies, with a bit of a sheepish grin, nodding to May. "I saw you make a pretty decent jump in the mirror yerself-" She cuts off as she watches Nobunaga cross. "Now that's just showing off." She laughs, shutting off Skrat's engine and climbing off. Then she pulls a duffel bag off the back, and spends several minutes assembling the 25mm cannon within. Once that's done, she attaches it to herself with a steadicam-style smartgunner rig, an ammunition hopper clamped to the back of her pack.

She looks at May. "Ladders can be a bit of an embuggerance for people built like you." she comments. "If we got rope, I can climb up and then haul you up, or our friend with the armoury can get her guns to help you, maybe." Everyone else gets a wave as they arrive. When Mairead suggests she can get through, Tiny nods. "Or we can go through. Through is always an entertaining option... with that said, teleportation is often quieter, and might let us get the jump on 'em. I vote we teleport."

With Twilight Sparkle's teleport, Leyanne finds herself on the other side of the gate. She looks around, pointing in the direction of the market. "Getting screams that way and - footsteps, running." She turns towards the woman, and her warning about shadows. She has just enough time to turn towards her own shadow, when it claws a gouge in her armour. "Fuck!"

She attempts to gun down her own shadow with the 25mm cannon. "Greed? Naw, man, I ain't here for greed. I'm just here to rescue some folks and leave the dead to their rest."

May (6331) has posed:
May, for her part, /has/ seen horses and ponies before, but not purple and not talking. So when Twilight looks at her, she looks right back at Twilight and actually gives a slight smile.

"If you're going to get me over, that's great," May says; she was already frustrated with the possibility of ladders and being unable to ride (okay, run) to the rescue. She doesn't handle ladders very well; her arms and forelegs can handle them okay, but her rear legs have nothing to hold onto, and that's a lot of mass to hang out over nothing. It's like doing a pull-up, /all the time/. She adds to Leyanne, "I'd rather just... go," because though she's pretty sure she can climb it, why do it if she doesn't have to?

So she takes the teleporty route in, thanks to Twilight Sparkle, and is abruptly in a place of riches. Not that she can see in the dark, but when the gemstones light up she can see again. Her eyes are dazzled by the sparkle... for about two seconds.

The running woman gets her to focus. "We'll protect you!" May declares, moving to cover the woman from whatever she is running from. Sometimes life really /is/ simple, or at least looks it at first glance. She reaches behind her, pulling out an arrow from her quiver and unhooking her bow from its straps in the same movement; she draws at full extension, firing it directly at one of the shadows while she prances sideways, away from it.

May spared a couple glances for the gold and gems, as the voice might have notice if it's a thinking thing, but right now she's laser-focused on defending the woman. "Go away, voice!" May yells, into the darkness. "I don't like ghosts much!"

Mairead Sandilands has posed:
    Blinking, Mairead looks as they are teleported into the city, "That's new," she states as she sees the creatures fromt he shadows appear, "Come on, this way lass," she says as she walks forward and stands in front of everyone, "I can handle these, get the we lass out of here," she states to them as she summons her longsword in one hand and a cylandrical object as well and looks as the pop-hiss is heard and she blinks, "...." and steps back a few. She is too familiar with those and looks as she thumbs her on as well.

    Getting ready, she thinks and looks at the women, "Behind me lass," she states as she readys herself for combat.

    When her own shadow appears and advances, she looks, "Lets dance," she says as she hears the voice, "Sorry, no greed her." and she closes her eyes "Our father, who art in heaven," she begins to says as she swings at the shadow.

Nobunaga has posed:
    The choice seems to be to teleport! So when the spellcasting pony sets it up (Will Multiversal wonders never cease?), Oda Nobunaga accepts the invitation, warping past the obstacle presented by the gate. When she disappears, the rifles she'd created dissolve-- and do not reappear on the other side with her. She plants the end of her katana scabbard between her feet, examining the courtyard presented with an appraising expression. The shouting woman is noted, eyes shifting to the shadow cast by her be-caped figure.

    "How interesting," the Servant comments, "A Kage-Onna doesn't usually attack. So you're no youkai, are you?" Wrenching up, her katana is pulled from its scabbard, and she uses it merely to defend herself rather than go on the attack.

    Oda Nobunaga is grinning.

    "Sate my greed, huh? You address the Demonic King of the Sixth Heaven! My greed is boundless, but no treasure /you/ have could satisfy me! The treasure I seek is a unified nation! My greed lusts for land and conquest!" Shifting, she stamps her foot. Light shoots out around her, briefly interrupting her shadow in the creation of a swarm of floating rifles around her, "Show your true form and satisfy my hunger, demon! So that you may submit to my supremacy, for I am Oda Nobunaga, the King of Greed!"

Twilight Sparkle has posed:
     Twilight finds herself wondering if they even need the teleport as Zerrawn just forces the huge gate open. And it is pretty impressive seeing someone other than herself force such a large object open. But, she's already casting the spell and figures she may as well use it. So, in a flash of purple-white anyone who chose to accompany Twilight will find themselves safely within the city just beyond the gate. Twilight Sparkle's eyes widen at all the gold and jewels. "Oh my!

     Then that woman runs toward them screaming about shadows, and Twilight's eyes widen as she sees her own rising up behind her. "...ohmy..." is all she manages before it swings at her. She reflexively establishes a translucent purple magic shield around herself, but the sharp tendrils slice deep into the shield and still catch Twilight in the side. "Gaah!" She leaps off the road, then fires a beam of magic at her shadow. "Greed? I...I don't really value this sort of thing! I prefer knowledge and friends!" she exclaims as she fends off attacks with bursts of beam magic and shield magic. But, even as she is doing all of this, she makes a mental note to keep her distance from Zerrawn and Nobunaga. One literally feels evil, and the other just plain sounds evil. At least, to a sheltered pony such as Twilight Sparkle.

Kotone Yamakawa has posed:
Kotone Yamakawa will teleport along with Twilights help aqnd as she arrives after it? She's starting to get concerned, there's something she doesn't. They are under attack and she didn't bring her Armred suit. She should have brought the Armed suit. She should have and they keep coming, she'll however get her SMg out and she notes to the Sith Lord.

"I agree we need to avoid it if we can..."

She also feels the hate somehow and Kotone is more machine than physically human at this point. Wait that weapon? Oh sear it's some kinda of plasma saber of some sort.

She'll pull her own weapon now and start shooting at her own shadow.

"I had had enough of shadows trying to kill me with the black forest, now this?!"

Hemlock (6320) has posed:
The shadow's true power is not strength, but their number, with quite a few of them, outnumbering the group by atleast twice as much, as the shadows of buildings and such join in. However, they move to fight back. Leyanne is able to take on her shadow and one assisting it as they slash her, tearing them through of holes until they fall flat, returning to their normal form. Zerrawn's lightsaber and Kotone's plasma sword both easily cut through them as if they were butter, the light to the attacks seeming to assist, while May's arrows stagger them, the flat shapes getting holes like paper, torn apart quickly. The massive one of the IS is similarly weak, torn apart by her blades after a few strikes, though it tries to gash through the metal of the IS in the process. Twilight's bursts of magic also assist.

Nobunaga's shadow swiftly pulls back as her speech, reverting into a normal shadow. There doesn't seem to be a reason...until in the distance, the castle crackles, and suddenly, a chunk of it is blown into rubble as a massive golden javelin goes flying, heading straight for Nobunaga's position. It glows of its own accord, shining light upon the rest of the pathway and a mighty stairway on the way to the castle reveals itself in the light, made of jade. Through the whole in the castle wall, gleaming eyes of rubies stare through, as a massive creature stands inside, before turning as if attacking something within.

Luckily, with the shadows around them either dealt with or being dealt with, the young woman is able to calm down a bit and speak, pointing up to the castle. "The others...the others went in there! They have to still be in there. Please, help them!" She doesn't move to run, however, sticking with the group - she's especially careful around the lights. "The whispers led us in there...and then they found something, and the monsters attacked. They're not armed for it, please!"

If travelling to the castle on her request, lights start to turn on the massive staircase, creating dozens of shadows along it. They animate, waiting for any to cross through them, and try and swarm, stab, and rip them apart. Though for those with the ability to do so...there's also the massive hole in the wall as a pathway, leading straight to the massive creature inside. But it's over the lava, so a false jump or leap may be risky...!

Zerrawn (6336) has posed:
    Zerrawn looks to the woman. "And you followed them. How truely ingenous." He growls out, his mood apparently changing into one of pure hatred. He spins the saber in his hand idly, his own form of pacing. He then eyes the shadows waiting for them. "Look like we run the gauntlet. I'll take charge!" He yells out, immidiately charging in.

Mairead Sandilands has posed:
    Taking out her own Shadow, she receives some damage and looks, "Ok, this is new," she states as she hears the explosion and than sees something flying. Looking, she moves as sees the javelin flying and looks, "WATCH OUT!!!" she yells as she moves and jumps into the path of the thing, intercepting it midflight as she catches it in her gut. "OUFF!" is heard as Mairead goes flying backwards and slams into a wall of a building. Stunned, she looks and moves the weapon off and looks as she shakes her head, "The bloody hell.." and she stands slowly looking at the damage to her suit, well more her gut and holds her hand over it. "Everyone ok?" she asks those here as she stands upright, wincing.

Nobunaga has posed:
    Nobunaga has cowed her own shadow into submission. Raising her free hand, she thumbs her nose at it, then lifts her eyes to the burst of activity across the city. She shifts to square off with the enormous spear directed her way, until Mairead intercepts it with her mechsuit instead. This prompts a surprised look from the Sengoku warlord, following Mairead's recovery from the hit. Eyes shift back to the staircase produced by the javelin.

    "You didn't have to do that." Stepping forward, she begins ascending the steps, flanked by floating rifles. With Zerrawn leading the way, Nobunaga shifts to a support role-- a rifle introducing itself with a gunshot to any shadow that the charging Sith misses.

    Each rifle that fires promptly disappears, only to be replaced by a fresh weapon.

    "We've received an invitation. It would be rude not to accept. Though the hospitality has been certainly lacking thus far."

May (6331) has posed:
May was worried that her arrows wouldn't do anything against shadows - she only has one or two of the special arrows that might work better - but the fact that she can punch holes in them is reassuring. She gives the others - even Nobunaga and Zerrawn, who she is increasingly not liking the sound of very much - a thankful nod.

Nobunaga getting the attention of /something/ is less reassuring. At a very long distance, May can't tell exactly where the javelin is aimed, and so she keeps moving, literally picking up the woman and swinging her up onto her back. May doesn't like giving rides, but she'll make an exception when situations warrant, and if that woman is going to stick with them, it warrants.

"Are you okay?" she calls at Mairead, but she's still talking, so she can't be /that/ bad. More quietly, she says to the frightened woman, "It's okay, I'll keep you safe. Hang on, since I'm going to go faster than you can run - or if you'd rather hide, you can do that."

She gives the woman a couple moments to decide - on or off? - before she's off like a shot. May takes off at a gallop along the staircase. She's hoping she can just outrun the shadows, but her aim is such that she actually gets a shot or two off at any that may be chasing her without slowing down much; she has to crane around to do it, but she manages.

There are people up there. She's not going to be denied if she can help it.

Leyanne Mace has posed:
Leyanne Mace nods a little as she listens to the woman explain what happened. She starts to follow after Zerrawn when the lance bursts out of the building and heads for Nobunaga. She blinks a bit, watching Mairead intercept the spear. Once the Scotswoman has shown she's still in the fight, Leyanne continues to follow after Zerrawn. Like Nobunaga she moves to a support role, taking out her own fair share of shadows - mainly those that look like they're attempting to flank them. If none of them do, she just adds her rain of lead to the attack on the shadows. With the Sith acting like the point of the axe, she helps Nobunaga clear them back, leaving a steady trail of shell-casings in her wake.

Twilight Sparkle has posed:
     "Mairead!" Twilight exclaims as her new aquaintance goes flying from the impact. She gallops over quickly. "Are you alright?!" Her horn glows and the javalin lifts up and away. She winces as well as she sees Mairead's injury. "That looks bad..." she says, then walks with Mairead toward the stairs. Twilight throws the javalin into the lava with her magic, then looks at Mairead again. She can't heal Mairead either, but...she can restore the power armor. With a glow of her horn, Twilight restores quite a bit of integrity to Mairead's suit. "Let's go. They won't wait for us." she says, staying nearby to help Mairead if she needs it.

     As they start up the stairs, Twilight Sparkle adds her beams of purple-white magic to the attacks, cutting and searing the shadows like lasers. "What was that thing?!" she calls out, looking toward the castle and the hole in it.

Kotone Yamakawa has posed:
There's a lot of shadows, they out number the group by a fair numnber and they move to fight. Kotone shifts and mvoes with her shell's rapid spees as she's able to keep them from her. The plasma blade was working well enough, even though she lacked any real melee skill, it was mostly her raw strengh and the blade's plasma that did most of the damage as shty get ripped apart she notices there's a still things going on.

When the shadowes are handled for the moment.

"I understand we cleared the way out. She makes ready to head to the castle.

"Lets get going."

Hemlock (6320) has posed:
Whatever that thing inside the castle is, the group has enough glimpse to see what it can do. They tear through the swarms of shadows, lightsabers, gunfire, and many rifles burning, shooting, and blowing through them. The problem here is that as they destroy more in front of them and get ahead, the giant inside slams something into the ground, and more form behind them, coming up and harrying them up the stairs, trying to do more slashing damage into them.

The woman rides upon May's back slightly reluctantly, scared of the danger ahead, but not willing to be left behind. "I-I'm Clover." She says, as the group makes it up the stairs.

Inside the main hall of the castle, it's incredibly extravagant. Piles upon piles of gold coins rest around a massive silver throne, and lush carpets made out of the finest silk are underfoot. It'd be quite a site to take in, if it weren't for the incredibly one-sided battle. A massive skeleton, with eyes of rubies, hair of silk, and a cloak of shadows, is wielding several javelins of gold, stabbing them at a small group of settlers, playing with them like a child plays with food. The most strange thing about it is the gilded crown on its head - it's way too small to fit, being more human-sized. It turns to the group, tilts its head, and the whispers come through the wind again.

"You are all the same. You come for my riches. But you cannot have them. No one can!"

The maddened skeleton throws javelins at everyone who comes through, trying to pierce them with the massive golden spears. If anyone gets into melee range, it sweeps with one, trying to cut through them. It looks like this is going to be a problem, especially with the shadows coming in from behind them!

Zerrawn (6336) has posed:
    Zerrawn growls as he spots the skeleton that hurls the javelins at him and the others. Tapping into the force once more, he aims to grab every thrown object and hurl them back at the skeleton. "I don't want your riches, but now you've made me angry..." He says, utilizing force charge to slam right into the maddened skeleton and start cutting him up.

Leyanne Mace has posed:
Leyanne Mace gets knocked down by one of the skeleton's spears - though thankfully she'd managed to turn so that it doesn't do much more than take one of her shoulder-guards off, and carve a deep dent into her cybernetic arm. She picks herself up, swinging around to aim at the Skeleton-King. "Not really dude, I'm here for them." She takes her cybernetic hand off her gun a moment to point at the settlers. "You let them leave, I leave you to your rest." A sniff. "Of course, I can't speak for the others, just myself."

If he doesn't listen and continues to be hostile, she opens fire.

Mairead Sandilands has posed:
    Blinking, she nods, "Your welcome," she says as she checks her systems and begins to follow the others. "I agree," she mentions to Nobunaga as she readys the missiles she has, plus she has her AIC that will do some nice stopping. As she moves, Twilight looks and help heal, "Thank you," she says to her as she moves. "Its be ok, my injuries are part of the job of protection. They cannot stop me from the task before us," . o 0 (Granted, Touta is going to be curious and asking about the injuries.)

    As she walks, she summons Bean-Nighe, her two double barrel beam gatling guns into each hand and gets ready. Plus she has her Wulver's, the missles in the four pods that are flanking her. Her trump card is the Active Inertia Canceller or AIC, within her suit. This effectively slows or reduces the speed of an object to the point that it appears to be standing still. This is good enough to stop big things, but the flaw in it, Mairead has to concentrate on the target. This leaves her open for attacks form other directions and it can be dangerous for her. However, right now the issue is the targets aroudn her as she begins to fire the beam guns from both hands and as the blasts form them fire, she winces slightly.

    As she walks up the steps, she is ready to meet head on whatever threw the Javelin at Nobunaga and is ready for round two... She also will keep and eye on Zerrawn as she is all too familiar with what a lightsaber is and the damage it can do. She does think about Zerrawn being a Sith and what he can truely do. Just the remarks on his anger is enough to give her chills and what she is seeing so far adds to that.

    AS they top the stairs, she blinks at the Skeleton and both of the guns disappears as the javelins start to fly, she raises her left hand and begins to concentrate and halt the Skeleton in place. "... Go...." is all she says as she will take all the hits to hold this beast. in place. Using her AIC she in a sense slows it to the point of view of not moving. As she does this, she is hit by a second javelin and holds her place, but the hit was good enough to do some more damage to Mairead and her IS. "Clota, give me the strength to stand and hold." she mutters to herself.

May (6331) has posed:
Turns out it can be a little hard to hold a conversation while running at full speed.

May tries it anyway. "All right, Clover - I'm May. Just - keep your hands around my waist, okay? I came to help and I'll do the best I can to rescue everybody." She means it. She really means it. May doesn't know how to move to let someone on her back fight well, but Clover's not going to fight, she's just going to hang on, and May /does/ know how to fight while carrying a heavy load.

May suddenly stops her forward run, but just for a moment; she plants her forelegs and kicks backwards with both her rear legs when a shadow gets too close. But she's gotten ahead of many of the people - Zerrawn and Nobunaga excepted - and she has to trust to Leyanne and Mairead to shoot /up/ after her to keep them safe.

"I don't want riches!" May yells at the skeleton. She likes money (who doesn't?) but that's not what she came here for today. "If you let them go, we'll just leave, and you can go back to... haunting your money, or whatever you do. We can even tell people not to come in because it's all yours!"

One of the javelins strikes May in the flank; she turned to avoid exposing Clover to danger, but that means she got hit instead. She rears up halfway in response to the sudden pain, dropping back down with a heavy thump as her hooves hit the carpet. "Get away from them!" she orders, drawing a special arrow from her quiver and pulling it back.

May fires a red-tinged arrow with some papers wrapped around the haft. In flight, the whole thing ignites into a firebolt, aimed directly at the skeleton's torso; May follows it up with a trio of regular arrows, one after another as fast as she can shoot. She's prancing around, trying to stay out of reach of the shadows, the whole way; the fifth arrow she shoots is aimed at a shadow instead, for her own safety.

Kotone Yamakawa has posed:
It's not long before they reach the castl and htey find there, with May handling the woman who soon gives her name to be Clover along with them? Everything is accounted for and they pres son soon they make it into the hall, it's pretty amaing there's enough gold here that she could cash out of being a Paladin and live pretty well without screwing anyione else out of a share she shake her head a bit keep focused ans the Skeleton isnice for that. She looks at it for a moment and sshe wonders jut /what it was, in life. Then comes the Javelins and she's now trying to evad,e also it's a good thing she has the plasma blade, ro she's be not able to evne think about really hurting the Skeleton with bullets.

She however can't get up close as she's evading so she'll have to use the bullets. She sees the Sith use his power to redirect the javlins and she's closing in now firing shots hopefully able to get to melee soon enough!

Nobunaga has posed:
    Cresting the staircase to confront a skeletal ancient king. Well, that's adventurous in most regards! The warlord Oda Nobunaga sweeps a hand, scattering the various arquebus rifles floating around her into more advantageous firing positions. When Zerrawn charges right in, it's the Demon Archer's duty to keep her distance. She draws her katana once more, keeping the scabbard at her side and her sword at the ready.

    "I have no interest in such pointless material things," Nobunaga repeats. Her eyes shift and she glances back. When shadows start closing in a pincir movement, she whirls around and points with the tip of her sword. The matchlock rifles around her respond in kind, opening fire down the gilded staircase.

    "Surrounding us won't work for someone as weak as you!" the Warlord calls out, "You will submit to me, or be destroyed!"

Twilight Sparkle has posed:
     As she makes it into the room, Twilight is awed by what she sees. The gigantic skeleton, the huge javalins, the settlers trying to escape...she has just enough time to gasp before one of those javalins impacts right beside her. The explosion from the force of the impact sends her sprawling across the floor, but she gets back to her feet quickly. She hears what the skeletal king says, then notices the shadows coming in behind them. It looks like they are surrounded, trapped in here with this creature. They could be overrun at any moment!

     With everyone else focusing on the skeleton, Twilight focuses on the incoming shadows. Her horn glows brightly and quite a bit of those gold coins float into the air. As those shadows move in toward them, the gold coins settle into several large piles near the entrance. Then at each pile a small amount of the coins for into large gun-shapes, and with a sound much like a heavy calibur machine gun the coins start firing down the tunnel, pelting the shadows with all the power and lethality that small disk shapes launched at high speeds can muster, joining Nobunaga in keeping the shadows at bay.

Hemlock (6320) has posed:
Leyanne tries to negotiate with the Skeleton King. He doesn't listen, and continues to fight, leading to him getting torn into with her gunfire, his cloak tearing open. The whispers continue. "Those who attempt to take my precious crown suffer the full wrath! I am the king of Midasmount! Behold the splendor of my riches!"

Zerrawn slams into the skeleton, hurling its own javelins back at it with the power of the Force. They embed into its bones, causing it to roar out and lash in pain, as Zerrawn's own lightsaber slices through its bones and starts to make its legs wobble.

May's flaming arrows slam into it, setting the cloak completely on fire and burning it away. The shadows behind them go insane, uncontrolled, and uncoordinated. This makes it easier for Nobunaga and Twilight to hold them at bay, ripping the Shadows apart with sword and gun and coins, and making them no longer a problem after a bit.

Clover is holding on tight to May, trusting in the centaur-woman completely to help her. Kotone's bullets knock off balance one of its jeweled eyes, partially blinding it, as it begins to stumble even more. The skeleton-king, however, is /pissed/, especially at its coins being stolen. The spears impaled in it start to glow, lights flashing out at everyone...and then it freezes, the lights dying down, as the Inertia Canceller completely stops whatever it was about to do. It stands there, ripe for the attack, for several moments, allowing free shots...

And then, the /crown/ fires off a blast of all things, a wave that moves to push Mairead back and break through the effect. The Skeleton-King thrashes out in anger, ripping off its hairs and using them as fine whips, trying to lash out at everyone in range. It's partially blind, so it's stumbling and easily tripped up...but that crown has started thrumming, occasionally sending out shockwaves at everyone. It's small enough to fit a human instead of a skeleton, but there's some sort of /power/ behind it.

Zerrawn (6336) has posed:
    Zerrawn grins as he watches the skeleton-king flops around and trips down. But the shockwaves cause him to stumble, and one of the whips manages to cut his hood off. It reveals his felinoid features, and a VERY PISSED OFF looking kitty man. The poor king would soon find the Sith Lord screaming at him, and a wall of concussive force smashing against him like a freight train.

Mairead Sandilands has posed:
    Smiles as the beast stoppe dand than is thrown back by the crown and there is a good sized imprint in the wall where she hit it. She falls forward and blinks as she stands up, hurtng more and a few good cuts on her body and dents in her armor and parts missing. Seeing the crown, she thinks for a moment and targets it. AS she thinks, the four pods open up and the guns appear in her hands as she gets good lock ont he crown.

    Inside Mairead head, there is a voice, "I offer my help to you." the voice says as her IS speaks to her and across Mairead's eyes she sees a message, Full Weapon Unlock Granted. Smiling, Mairead looks and squeeze the triggers of the beam guns and the barrels start to spin and fire. Next all four pods fire out the missiles within, all 40 of them launch at once and fly for he head and crown.

Leyanne Mace has posed:
Leyanne Mace takes advantage of the free shots that Mairead grants her, diving aside to avoid one of the whipping hairs. She rolls to her feet, only to be knocked off them by a shockwave. Okay, he's really starting to annoy her now. "Ah fuckit." She growls, trying to plant herself stable enough that she can open fire without being knocked down.

"Just like all undead." She growls. "Gotta shoot 'em in the head."

And she does just that, concentrating her heavy barrage of 20mm fire on the head and crown area, especially those ruby eyes, should she get the shot.

It's at this point that Mairead opens up again, and even Tiny is impressed. "You got enough overkill with yer overkill there love?"

Kotone Yamakawa has posed:
Kotone Yamakawa hearinf that style of name? Makes Kotone's thought to ignore the coins likely the best action she could take on that. With her shots knocking the thing off balance she's able make her time to attack. She sees the skeleton is exposed and she'll make a charge at it. The waves push her back she keeps going she was going to attack the Skeltinb directly even as she's taken some harm from the force pushing her back.

She shifts her aim of her weapon leaps into the air double jumping as she goes and takes a shot at the crown.

May (6331) has posed:
May expects to be held onto in this case, so it's fine. Just so long as she doesn't squeeze /too/ hard.

May's fire arrow seems to have helped matters with letting people get the shadows out of the way, for which she's grateful - she can't shoot them all one by one (or she could, but it would take a while and they'd probably swarm her before she finished).

As the shadows start to clear out, she slowly starts to circle, moving around to try to get toward the group of innocents previously menaced by the king. May thinks she has a clear chance because the king is slowing down and the shadows have been cleared out for the moment.

NOPE

May is whipped by one of the hairs. It's a wild shot and doesn't catch her solidly - the King /is/ blinded, but she wasn't expecting him to do anything at all, so she doesn't dodge much. It leaves a welt along her arm as she blocks it from hitting her face, and she winces, but she keeps moving in the direction she'd planned, only half-deafened by Zerrawn's scream and dazzled by the bright blasts. Whoof, her allies don't ease up, do they?

Seeing as everyone else is downing the king, May tries to hustle the settlers out of the way. "C'mon!" she calls. "While he's busy!" Or dead, judging by the power of those guns. "Come with me, I've got Clover!"

Nobunaga has posed:
    With shadows dealt with, Nobunaga whirls around. The rifles floating around her dissolve, and she thrusts her sword upward. More appear at her command, and she calls out, "Present your corpse before Three Thousand Souls, upon the Three Steps of Nageshino!" Countless matchlock rifles swivel around, aiming at the great skeletal king. While not the direct focus of his rage, and being at a distance where she's a poor target for whip attacks, the shockwaves do strain her. She braces against it, digging her heels in as she points with the tip of her katana, "Behold, the Demon King's Three Line Formation!"

    Immediately, the guns surrounding Nobunaga open fire. Some scatter from the shockwaves, their shots going wild, while those that resist are aimed for the monstrosity's face. They fire in volleys, such that the first group is reloaded (or in this case, re-summoned) by the time the third group has fired. A ceaseless barrage of gunfire.

Twilight Sparkle has posed:
     Twilight Sparkle feels a bit of relief as the shadows become disoriented and therefor easy pickings for the various types of amunition. When she turns to look though, she gets hit by that shockwave and is again sent bouncing away and slides right toward the shadows. "Aaaaaahh!!" It takes her a moment to dig her hooves in and slide to a stop, at which point she scrambles up and sprints back toward the others. When she notices what May is up to, Twilight's horn glows and a portal appears in front of herself, while another appears near May. May and the settlers would be able to see Twilight on the other side as well as the stairs that seems to be nearly clear of enemies. "Come on!" she shouts to them, gesturing with a hoof for them to come toward her. "Let's get you out of here!"

Hemlock (6320) has posed:
The Skeleton-King is in a mad rage, no more whispers. Just lashing out and trying to slay those it feels have trespassed on its realm. Zerrawn charges him, knocking him completely off balance, and stopping his flailing of the hairs.

It moves to grab the javelins and start their glowing again, but it can't aim the lights all of a sudden, because the cannon fire blows out its eyes entirely. Massive bursts of energy fire out, but they just impact into the castle and out the hole, causing more rubble to fall into the lava rivers out below.

As May focuses on the settlers, they all move to rush after her, a pair of them moving to grab their injured comrade and take him with them. Twilight's portal is taken as a route to get them out of there, running towards it as fast as their feet will take them.

Kotone's shot strikes the crown true, and it welts the metal, causing a hideous shriek of noise throughout the castle. The gold coins still left actually start to /wilt/, the crown having great power. More shockwaves are about to fire out...

But Nobunaga is able to send them off-base completely by blasting back the skeleton-king's face, causing its head to veer back and blow up part of the castle's ceiling. The bone is all sorts of messed up, and if it was alive, those would have been entirely fatal shots. The crown starts to bubble and move to fire off /something/...

And then Mairead's massive volley goes off. In the impact that destroys the head (but not the skeleton, which briefly keeps moving), the crown is obliterated. A massive cloud of fog rolls over the entire place, thick enough to be possibly momentarily obscuring...and when it's gone, everything starts to go wrong. The gold coins are rusted away, useless, while the castle is rotting, collapsing, and the carpet below in rags. The city outside is a heap, looking like a massive ruin of the past. And the pillars of gold that the castle is standing on?

Collapsing underfoot. The castle starts to sink into a massive moat of lava, so if the group's going to escape...they better get through Twilight's portal, or flee another way, and quickly!

Mairead Sandilands has posed:
    Mairead blinks and looks, "Grab hold," she says as she hovers and extends her hands. "I'll get us out of here," she adds as she waits for peopel to get a hold of her. "Or if necessary, get through the portal." she adds as she looks at the building. "Or try to get upp higher, the roof if necessary."

    Asshe gets people, she places them on the pods that flank her, her back and in her arms and then moves for an exits

Zerrawn (6336) has posed:
    With that done and the skeleton-king apparently dead, the illusion falls away and the castle begins to cruble away. "Damn....Quinn! Autopilot the Fury back to Imperial space!" "It will be done, my lord! I advice you find another way out!" Zerrawn and his second, Malavai Quinn, have a quick discussion, pulling the Sith Lord out of his rage. He de-activates his saber and takes off for the portal, waiting to make sure everyone else gets out first. Once they do, he goes through.

Leyanne Mace has posed:
Leyanne Mace is, of course, the rear guard, because that's the job of folks with heavy cannons. She guards the portal, giving Mairead a nod as she secures those who can't make the portal. Then she ducks through, the last one through that particular exit.

May (6331) has posed:
May keeps chivvying people along. She'll carry if she has to, but with Clover on her back she's already fairly loaded down; mostly she's just trying to make sure everybody makes it through and can make their escape. She almost dances to absorb the impact of the few shockwaves that get to her before the King falls.

Which means instead she's dealing with a collapsing castle. "Faster!" she calls. "Can everybody make it? Come on!" She's going to be one of the last through herself, with a flying leap to clear distance /fast/.

Twilight Sparkle has posed:
     As the entire castle starts to collapse, Twilight Sparkle turns around and starts back down the stairs, keeping the portal with her and leaving the other end where it sits inside the king's chamber. She stops once she is clear of the moat, then waits anxiously for everyone to get clear. Once they are all clear of the moat, she starts back down the street. "Did we get everyone?" she calls out as they head back toward the front gate. She looks between faces, trying to mentally account for everyone.

Kotone Yamakawa has posed:
It seems Kotone had some idea of the Crown being the source of thing's power or at least a pat of it. tHe kings mage range contiunes but e the comined force seems to be bringing it down. She comes in for a landing with a cunch to the floor as the gold coins rust away into nothing useless and the castle is rotting.

"It's time to go!"

She's running for the portal Twilight made and she's going to leap right through it and out of here.

Nobunaga has posed:
    "Heh heh..." Nobunaga tips her head foward as rot washes throuhg the castle, transforming untold riches into so much ruined slag and destroyed cloth. Her head tips back, eyes closed and mouth wide, "Wa ha ha ha ha~! It was all a trap from the start! Ultimately worthless once claimed, even the fortress itself crumbles once victory is achieved! Truly the bait was selfishness from the start!"

    She waves her hand, dispersing her rifles into so much spent magic in the same motion that she uses to turn around, marching out through the portal provided by Twilight Sparkle. Deposited in a safer location, the Demon Archer adjusts her cap, still grinning, "To think that was so hollow after all."

Hemlock (6320) has posed:
Everyone can easily make it out safely, including the settlers, though the one injured man needs to be rushed to medical immediately. Behind them, Midasmount lies ruined. There is nothing of real worth here, atleast not on the surface - all gone with age.

Hopefully now, Midasmount will be forgotten to time. For the brave adventurers have put the cursed kingdom to rest, to live on only in memory.