Along the Roads, Among the Halls
IC date: Winter 36, 1007
OOC date: January 24, 2013
PCs: Dream-Daze, Lavender, Magpie, Pumpkin, Sadaka, Spearmint, Thunnini
GM: Diamond Dog

The adults in the expedition are still rather absent. Nobody was ever designated chaperone; heck, hardly anybody has been designated in charge, one way or another. Muzaji is still off enjoying the city. Goody Horseshoes- he's a ship's captain! Why wouldn't he be the one in charge?- has been in the library at the Silver Archive more often than not, lately, researching something of his own accord. Who's there to keep an eye on the kids and keep them out of trouble?

Eddy, of course! Except she's basically a kid herself. Also, she's not present. There's assorted work to be done in preparation of an incoming expedition to some awful place someplace outside of town, so she's off taking care of that. She seemed really torn up about not being on hand to tour-ize the airbreathers, so she left a handful of guards around to keep an eye on things and to show anybody around in case they needed it. Said guards are more interested in playing cards, though. What game do they play? You'd think Go Fish, but you'd be wrong.

As such, there's basically nobody to stop anybody from going anywhere. The doors are open and the staff at the Berth is familiar enough with its unusual guests that they hardly notice when they come and go by now. The room and board, it's all getting paid for, so it all works out. There hasn't even been as much piratical pillaging as they were first worried about! Who knew.

Pumpkin has pretty much not stopped going 'wow' the whole time they've been here. She's following around her friends and keeps pointing out places they should go or things they should see. What? It's not every day that a filly gets to go under the sea. Well. A non sea-filly, that is.

So what have the foals been doing with all this free time? Dream Daze has been alternating between taking little swims out with those fun swimmy-floaty thingies, romping through the odd marketplace, and watching the guards in the hopes she'll catch one napping on the job. She's so full of curiosity… She wants to know what seaponies dream about! Ones that don't come to the Harbor, see. But she can't find one asleep! They go…somewhere when they're asleep. Hmph.

Thus she's easy to convince to go out and about with Pumpkin, and they probably pushed Sadaka into coming along to see shops at least. Maybe they'll find a good souvenier! Or a go-kart ornament…

Thunnini's still using an old broom to help push her water-cart around, and she's developed more balance in standing on her tail so she has proper leverage to get a decent push. But even with all of this…

"I'm bored," she sighs plantively. "We haven't had a chance to /really/ go adventuring yet, and there's so much stuff we could do while we're down here!"

Sadaka is indeed trailing along with the rest of the group, and looking quite uneasy about it. She's left her wings back in the room, and isn't quite sure what to do with herself without them! Not to mention, you know… the water. She's very dedicatedly keeping her eyes on her hooves.

Spearmint, meanwhile, has his eyes quite elsewhere. They're staring off at that wall over there. Not that that does him any good or ill! But his ears are perked and he seems a bit more confident trotting about in these odd bubbletunnels. The echo always threw him off, but he seems to be getting used to it! He even manages to approach the group without running smack into somepony this time. Yay!

Pumpkin says "So what do y'all think? I'd love to try seapony food. Ah bet it's tasty! You wanna eat?""

The hotel is boring! It is old news. The foals have since proceeded to exit into the streets outside. Here in the middle of the day, in the middle of the week, things are fairly busy, as traders go to and fro- seaponies in leg mode, and zebras as well. The plaza outside the hotel is a crossroads where several of the tunnel-like roadways come together, and different routes wind off in different directions. The glassy roof affords a view of the sea's surface high above- not as bright as one might expect, owing to the depth of the city. Even during the day, the characteristic, star-like lamps of the Starlight Kingdom gleam on the outsides of buildings. It might be easy to lose your sense of time down here… and, if you don't have a guide, your sense of direction.

But this is a town built to accommodate outlanders, and so there are signs. Four tunnels branch off from the plaza. One is familiar enough- heading west, back to the heart of the Port district, where the elevator leading back up to the surface, as well as the 'moon pool' room that provides easy access to the water outside, await. The port district also features a number of shops, and the clearest confluence of cultures. One other heads further north, in the direction of the Academy. The third tunnel heads south… it's not as busy, and looking out the windows in that direction reveals mostly smaller buildings. It appears to be a more residential part of town. The road to the east is the least traveled- there doesn't seem to be much in that direction except the rocky frontier of the town.

None of the different routes offer any immediate indication what they may hold. The adventurers will just have to sally forth into the unknown and see what they find… but then, that's what you get when you sneak out without a guide!

Dream Daze ducks back into the hotel long enough to grab her trusty Daring-Do issue Explorer's Hat. For this situation calls for a healthy dose of Exploring the Unknown! The shops are known. The water is very known. So Dreamy tries to plant the seeds of adventure in the others…by staring down the Road Least Travelled, and offering little daydreams of happy foals bouncing down a rocky road.

After grabbing a bite to eat at a tasty Seapony Snack Shack of course. Travel snacks are /essential/.

"Ooo, good idea, Dreamy," nods Thunnini. "Especially the snacks - don't want to come back from the adventure early because we're hungry."

Turning back briefly to see what Dream Daze is doing, Lavender gives a little pout. "Aw, I should have brought my hat!" A grin. "Looks good on you Dreamy!" Romps off forwards. "Food sounds great! But some of the food around here is just…weird…"

There is a lot of weird food. There's seapony food, which tends towards cold, wet, and salad-like. But there's also zebra food, which is all kinds of zesty and aromatic. Why would a zebra travel all the way from their land to use their spices to make their food in a distant location? Because they're homesick. And also, because seaponies love it. And also because it's delicious.

Presumably. Some of it looks kind of weird. What are those strings? Is that cheese or something? But some of it just looks like fruit! Or veggies. Or cooked fruis and veggies, alien and familiar at the same time.

Sadaka perks her ears slightly. She's all for the idea of food, at least! Especially some of the zebra food around. This is more zebras than she's ever seen in one place! It's kind of weird. But kind of cool! It's sort of neat to not be one of the only striped ones about. "Well, um… food is g-good." And it's not swimming. So… yes. Let's do this idea!

Dreamy bounces. Yes! Food! And then exploring! With such things decided, she starts to trot down the road with the best smells coming from it. Whichever road that is.

The best smells are in the direction of the food, which is in the direction of the center of the port district.

More wild Zebra food. More subtle Seapony chow. There are a few larger businesses built into the little buildings adjoining the main tunneled street, but there are little stands and carts set up in the street as well. A vendor hawks some kind of noodles, waving the foals over. Someone else has what looks like red bananas strung out and slowly grilling, filling the air with a sweet and savory aroma.

Every now and then, out of the corner of their eye, the members of the party- or at least, the ones that can see- spot bushes of blue leaves for sale. Looking directly at them, however, makes them hard to spot. Surely they don't sell any blue leaves down here, that would be silly.

Lavender is instantly drawn to the zebra treats. Spicy is preferable to wet and soggy! That, and she's got a zebra fondness anyway. She sniffs all about. "Getting hungrier just thinking about it. Ooh! These banana things look amazing."

Thunnini thinks about the tasty soda flavor she had in Horseshoe Harbor, but decides to follow the others in finding guaranteed food to acquire. Save the questing and such for the main adventure!

Pumpkin licks her lips. "Ooh, yeah! That sounds great, Lavender!" She fishes for her money pouch and gives a smile to a stallkeeper. "Y'all take bits?"

Admittedly it's hard not to think about being hungry in the face of such tastiness all around. Dreamy certainly isn't shy about sniffing at the seapony food as much as she is the zebra food. Bananas are brought up! Those are /always/ good. She remembers this one plantain booth in the Harbor… So she trots over to investigate. That booth's gonna get a lot of business, isn't it?

They're not ACTUALLY bananas. But they sure look like bananas! They're kind of pink in the middle and slathered in a rich red sauce. The pony manning the stall is a seapony shaped like fishing bobber, and he eases up from his bench behind the corner of the stall to peeeer down at shorter clients than he usually gets. More Equestrian clients, too! He grins broadly. "Bits! Of course! Be hard to do business with half the zebras here if we didn't!" He looks up and counts up the foals. "How many do you want?"

ONE BANANA serves ONE FOAL. Maybe two if you're not that hungry.

Lavender's a big filly, and hungry enough. Also feeling charitable to her friends! "You all want one? Five bananas please, my good friend!" Close enough. She gets some bits out of her saddlebag to pay for the lot.

Dreamy bounces her agreement and desire for a banana~ She wants one! Totally!

Pumpkin halts with a mouthful of bit partway to the counter. She shrugs and drops two on the counter. "Keep the change!"

More skillful forkwork than one may anticipate from a hooved creature ensues, as the vendor uses a long, double-tined implement to pluck five bananas off the grill- savory juices drip from them- and wrap them up in little sheets of tissuey paper. "Five bits," he says, because sometimes getting bananas is easy like that. "Plus another, for the road!" Money is exchanged, the goodies bagged up, and the bag is handed across to Lavender.

You receive: ["Banana"] x6

Lavender happily passes bananas around to all who desire them! And all who don't, if by any chance there are any, which seems unlikely.

Bananas, get! Dreamy bounces again! And, with a banana now equipped, shoots out a slightly shakey image of the foal parade marching down that road, which now has a sign that reads Adventure. Can we go that way noooooow?

Spearmint doesn't seem to mind the miscount! They got an extra for him anyways. Besides, one might not guess he's part of the group; he is bounding about quite eagerly from stall to stall. It smells so /good/ here! So many new smells! So many new spices! There's stuff here he's never smelled before, and he wants to take it all with him. Wouldn't cooking lessons be interesting with all this new /stuff/?! Eeeeeee spices~

Pumpkin accepts a banana and commences eating. Her tail flicks with sheer delight. "This is amazin'! Ah'm gonna have to learn how to do this mahself."

Back home the entire Harvest family shudders lightly as one.

The bananas taste much like they smell- a bit sweet, a bit savory. Sweet BBQ would be an apt comparison if ponies had any concept of BBQ. They're not quite as fruity as you might think, but they're not exactly regular bananas, are they? They are fruit of some sort, though. The sauce is a little sticky. The paper wrapping is handy for keeping the things held while one muches.

With bananas acquired and munched upon, the party heads back towards the hotel, and beyond, to the east.

As always, glass in the ceiling in walls affords a view outside, and some idea of what lies beyond as one heads down one of the winding, dome-like streets. To the east, there's fewer and fewer buildings. A few are large and quiet- storage facilities, perhaps. There are a few houses, and the smaller tunnels that wind off from the main road lead to more of the same. Occasionally a traveler passes by, carrying something with them on their way back towards the busier stretch of the port town.

But mostly, there is darkness- a quiet, sleepy kind of darkness rather than something truly forboding. The more spoare buildings makes for fewer of the star-like lights, and as such the gloom of the deep sea closes in further.

The road seems to branch at one point. A sign points northeast: "TRENCH OVERLOOK AND EASTERN DEEP DOCK YARDS." A second sign points southeast: "TRENCH DISTRICT AND HALLS OF REMEMBERANCE."

A small sign, scrawled on parchment, has been taped up underneath one of the signs. It reads, ZEBRAS WONDER WHY SEAPONIES LIKE CAPITAL LETTERS SO MUCH

At least it's a pleasant walk! And the darkness is adventureous, right? When the foals come across that sign though, and the parchment, Dreamy studies it. Then peers back at Thunnini, and points at the sign, a foggy question mark appearing over her head. Really?

Pumpkin reads. She reads slowly, but she reads. "Halls of rememberance? Now what in the hay could that mean? Y'all wanna check it out?"

Lavender blinks. "It sounds kinda neat! Probably all hero-y. Maybe there was a giant sea-pony war or something…" That gives her vaguely uncomfortable shivers, though. "I bet it's fun to look at. Let's go!"

Thunnini shrugs back at Dreamy. "Dunno; I'm not one who writes the signs," the seafilly says. She prepares to pole along after Lavender.

Dream-Daze shrugs too and follows. Halls of Rememberance does sound rather hero-y indeed. Maybe it'll be haunted too… Or at least with some creepy caretaker that has fun stories to listen to.

Sadaka trots along after the group, munching her snack. Omnomnom. She's not a picky sort! All of these ideas avoid going in the water, it sounded like. And hey, this place was… actually kind of cool, as long as she got to stay dry. She tilted her head. "…Don't you think Eddy would've mentioned that?" She speaks up after a moment. "She talks 'bout history a lot."

And stamps. She also talks about stamps.

The party heads southeast.

Here the tunnel slants downwards, towards an incline. Outside, the lights of the city are fewer and fewer. Anypony who has taken a trip down the elevator into the city will know that it's built in the confluence of several trenches, many of which cut further off into the ocean, dark and empty- it seems the trench district is so named because it descends into one of these massive, dark canyons in the ocean's floor.

Soon the tunneled path is quite clearly winding its way back and forth along the rock wall along the side of an undersea canyon. The inner wall consists of dark blue and black stone, while outside the windows on the opposite side, across the canyon, one can see the opposing cliff face, composed of more of the same jagged black and blue stone. Out in the water, on little ledges and crevices within the cliff face, plantlife is growing more and more sparse, and there are few fish to be seen. Little light from the surface makes its way down this far- what light there is spills out from the tunnel, lit every 20 feet or so by the soft glow of a magically-lit sphere set in the wall.

It's not completey abandoned. Every so often another pony walks by, though the mood is hushed. Most seem to be seaponies- though a Zebra does pass by, head turning this way and that as she searches for something, soon passing the party by and heading back up the way they came.

The tunnel continues forward and downward, switching back every now and then.

Pumpkin seems to be taking in the surroundings as much as anything else. "Ah bet this must've taken forever to get built. What do y'all think?

Lavender feels a need to hush her voice as the party descends the switchbacks. "What do you suppose is here? It's so dark…"

Dream-Daze 's eyes are wide as she takes in these sights. They're impressive! In their own way. Not so much beautiful as… Well, it feels so /intense/. She can't quite put her hoof on why. Maybe those other ponies that wandered by sorta give the impression this is not a Happy Fun place.

Needless to say, Dreamy feels about twenty times more 'adventuresome' standing in these tunnels.

Pumpkin hmms. "Maybe like a statue or something? That's what ah think memorials usually are, anyway. But this seems like an awful long way to go for one."

Magpie says "I feel like there oughtta be like… pirate treasure down here. Or a giant squid. Or a giant squid with pirate treasure. Or a giant pirate squid, with treasure.""

Dreamy promptly projects an image of just that: A giant pirate squid, with swords at the ends of all its tentacles, guarding a giant ship filled with pirate treasure.

And then Dreamy realizes who said it and double-takes at Maggie. Whoa! …She's Ruby's child, in spirit if not in blood, for sure.

Pumpkin leaps into air! "Magpie! Don't you go sneakin' up on a pony like that! Gave me the willies."

The noise of the ocean is a constant thing throughout the city- usually just a soft roar in the background as water churns and sloshes against the walls that seal away the air-filled portions of the city- but down here, it's more muted than normal, hushed like much of the atmosphere.

Lights begin to show outside- a soft gleam here and there on the far cliff face. Soon they begin to illuminate… structures. Columned entrances surrounding large, slab-like doors; sloping roofs sheltering them. Buildings built into the cliff wall, accessed from the water, leading to… what?

The tunnel is opening up as well, several doorways leading into cavern-like chambers dug into the rock wall. Inside these chambers are further doorways, many of which are sealed, as well as sconces in which are mounted small round portholes of some design. The lighting in these chambers is muted and warm. Here and there, ponies gather in small groups or stand by themselves.

Tucked into a corner near the entrance to one such cavern is a [ansi(r,small pouch). It does not appear to belong there.

Magpie is indignant! "I wasn't sneakin'," she lies. "I've been followin' right behind everypony for like forever!"

Lavender gazes…skyward, for all the sense that makes, and is distracted from Magpie's entrance! She pauses by a convenient, but unintentionally chosen, cavern entrance and gawks. "This is /incredible/. If it wasn't for being in a town I would say this is the best adventuring find of all time!"

Dreamy makes a raspy noise, almost a giggle, trotting along the tunnel now that Maggie's revealed her sneakiness. Peeking into random caverns, her horn aglow, she starts to form another daydream to say…something, but stops instead as she almost trips over a strange little pouch! So her image comes through as…a pouch. Blink. She nudges it with a hoof gingerly. And the image of the pouch suddenly has a question mark, with the word 'gold' hovering above it. Treasure? Did she just find treasure!?

Magpie comes trotting over to Dreamy. "Wha'ja find there, kid?" she asks, leaning down to peer. "Open it up!"

Lavender is slowly cut out of her reverie, and trots over. "Huh?.. Did someone lose something?" A grin comes over her face.

Something inside the small pouch jingles slightly with a metallic quality, albeit not one that is very much like coins.

At one far end of the cavern, a couple of ponies gathered by one of the sconces bow their heads. One reaches into a saddlebag and draws out some flowers- or at least bright pink, flowery fronds of some sort of seaweedy plant- and lay them in a vase near the sconce. The two then turn and make their way back out to the tunnel and head back up the winding switchback route towards the city.

The tunnel also continues downward, further into the trench, if someone so fancies heading deeper.

Sadaka blinks and peeks up over Magpie's shoulder to look at the pouch, then looks around nervously. "Wait, hang on. If it belongs to somepony we shouldn't just open it up."

Magpie pffft. "Of course we should. That's what pouches are /for/." Maggie's grasp of personal property is somewhat loose.

Not to be confused with her grasp ON personal property, which tends to be as tight as she can clutch it.

Lavender looks between Magpie and Sadaka. "Well if it's something really important to somepony, we can tell someone, and if it's not…some remembering-y thing…then we can leave it be. But otherwise, well, maybe someone hid it here to be found~!" Logic. Prance.

The small pouch doesn't seem to be placed in any particularly fancy location. It's just sort of sitting there. On the floor. Tucked a little underneath an overhanging ledge where the rock cliff face has been cut and smoothed into the open cavern.

Dreamy nudges the pouch again, then focuses her magic on it to levitate the pouch up! She hovers it between Lavender and Magpie, making it bounce temptingly. Totally offering it up to one of them to open~ Ooooh look, treaaaaasure~

Magpie nods! "Right! We have to open it and — and see if there's a name inside. So we can return it." Naturally.

Magpie rolls her eyes. She's not shy. Her horn limns and she upends the pouch into her hooves.

Out of the pouch falls… jewelry! It's a necklace- a chain of tarnished silver. Regular settings feature little gleaming pearls or bits of shell. It is cool to the touch.

Lavender pounces right next to it and leans down, nosing at it and staring. "What could it /be/? Except kinda pretty, of course. Hey Dreamy, I think it might look good on you!"

Thunnini looks at the necklace, unsure if it's just a piece of jewelry, or if it's somepony's phylactery.

Magpie puts on the necklace and grins. "How's it look?" she asks, striking a pose. (There's nothing to it, vogue.)

Likewise does Dreamy stare at it, her ears pinkening somewhat when Lav suggests such things. It /is/ awful pretty. But Maggie already has it on pretty quick, so the mute lil' 'corn smiles and points, and then applauds briefly. It looks /much/ better on Maggie, for sure.

Magpie gets a sort of faraway look, as if trying to remember something from a long time ago that she's nearly forgotten.

Lavender giggles. "How did I know that was gonna happen…What do you think girls? Souvenier for our little trip? I mean…it's just a neat necklace."

Sadaka fidgets nervously, biting her lip. She doesn't quite look as though she likes this idea. This doesn't feel like the place to be trying on somepony else's random jewelry. "I don't know… I m-mean… maybe it b-belongs to somepony. They might be l-looking for it. Don't all these seaponies have necklaces like that that're all… important?" She casts a glance over at Thunnini for confirmation.

In the tunnel leading down along the trench face, a zebra and a seapony wander by, talking quietly amongst themselves. The zebra is pulling a cart in which is stacked a few blocks of stone. Thy pass this particular cavern by, heading further down the tunnel.

Outside, in the water, the lights of the opposite cliff face are briefly darkened as a large shape passes by… another kraken drifting slowly through the deep sea waters. It briefly pauses, one vast eye peeking inside the glass at the ponies within, before it ambles along, tentacles slowly waving about behind it.

Thunnini nods. "Yeah, most of the older seaponies have phylacteries that allow them to have four legs when they take them off," she explains. "And it certainly looks like a phylactery; not sure who it belongs to, though."

Lavender quirks an ear. "Well…All we'd have to do is find somepony who's a pony, right? Wait, that doesn't quite work, there's not gonna be a huge shortage of other seaponies doing that." She frowns. "Well, what do you wanna do with it? We can leave it or maybe Eddy would know how to find who's lost one. And if nobody has…"

Dreamy's ears perk right up. Eddy! Of course! If anyone'll know what it is, she would! So she floats that image up of Eddy, with a great shiny starburst behind her, holding the necklace over her head.

Magpie blinks and shakes her head as if trying to clear one of Dreamy's daydreams. She unlatches the necklace and slips it around Dreamy's neck. "Uhh… h-here. You did find it. You can have it," she says a little too quickly.

Lavender peers at Magpie, then at Dream Daze. "Huh, what's going on? you're turning down something shiny? Wait…You don't actually think it's /cursed/ or something, do you?"

Dreamy blinks, the necklace clicking into place around her neck. She gives Maggie a curious look, her horn lighting up as though about to 'say' something else when… her eyes go a little foggy. Unfocused even. The glow stalls, fades, and for a few moments the mute lil' unicorn just stands there, staring off into space.

When Lav mentions something about 'curses' and whatnot, that seems to bring her back out of her 'daze', blinking a few times rapidly and knitting her eyebrows in confusion. She hesitantly offers up the 'suggestion' of Eddy again, blinking at the necklace. Now she's convinced that the smart lil' seapony /definitely/ needs to see this!

When last the foals saw Eddy, she was leaving this morning for distant parts of the city to take care of business. They could go looking for her, or they could go back to the hotel and see if she showed back up.

The tunnel sits; the quiet atmosphere remains. Another pony descends from above, offers the group of foals a hesitant smile without really looking directly at them, and makes her way into the cavern to approach one of the little sconces that feature a porthole-like fixture.

Sadaka looks over at Dreamy uneasily. "What? What's wrong? Yeah, I guess we… could ask Eddy… maybe you shouldn't wear that." She frowns, glancing after the passing pony. What is up with these sconce things? She raises herself up on her hind legs to try to get a better look over at the nearest one.

Magpie ruffles Dreamy's ears. "We'll have to ask later," she says to Eddy, then slowly moves over to see what Sadaka's lookin'a t.

Shouldn't wear it..? But.. Dreamy puts a hoof over the necklace, one ear flicking. Fully intending to keep it apparently. At least until they find Eddy. She even bounces a couple times to show that there's nothing wrong! See? Happy filly~ She leaves it at that, then, as attention shifts to the sconces and things. They haven't exactly figured out what this place is /for/ yet, have they?

The sconce is much like a porthole on a ship in that it features circular brass fittings in which is set a plate of glass. It is hinged to open, but affixed by a heavy lock on one side. Inside is a small bay, and a pedestal; upon the pedestal is another pendant. This one looks like a gently frayed rope, into which is wound fibers of silver and platinum, and from which hangs a small conch shell. A small plaque beneath the pendant reads:

917 - 1002

Along the walls, a hundred other sconces gleam with a soft light from within and the subtle speckle of a rainbow of colors. The bounty of the sea, bound up in enchanted jewelry, alongside the names and memories of family members gone beyond into the embrace of the stars.

Sadaka blinks, staring at it for a moment before her ears droop and she slowly lowers herself back down, biting her lip and bowing her head a bit. She thinks she knows what this may be, and the idea doesn't seem to make her too cheery.

Lavender scoots up close to the sconce to look closer before looking around. "Oh…Oh wow. It's a tomb. It really /is/ a tomb. So many of them. It's so, um." She fumbles for words. "So ornate. I've never even heard of anything like this before."

Magpie says "You don't think they just leave those necklaces /in/ there, do ya?"

Sadaka frowns, reaching a hoof up to her earring. "They belonged to 'em. If… if they don't p-pass them on, then why shouldn't they keep 'em with the pony they belonged to?" she points out, admittedly rather quietly. "They're memories."

Dreamy blinks at the odd sort of tomb. Then at Magpie. Then at the necklace around her neck. This really /is/ a mystery! She steps back from the sconce, and starts backing down the tunnel, floating a daydream up about the foals walking back into the hotel. She suddenly feels very tired… And like they probably shouldn't keep playing in a graveyard. A seapony graveyard.

Thunnini remains quiet, thinking about the phylactery the foals found. Why does it seem familiar, like she's seen this specific one before…?

Lavender shrugs. "If the necklace is supposed to be where the seapony part of a seapony is, I guess it makes sense to keep them close, protect them. Respect them." She looks at the necklace from the pouch."

Magpie peers into another portal. "Well /they/ aren't usin' 'em. Oughtta be for somepony who, y'know, needs one." She pauses, blinks at Lavender. "…you mean like there's… part of 'em in there? Eww."

And so the party, with the phylactery in hoof, departed the Halls of Remembrance and headed back up to the noise and bustle of the city.

Did knowing the nature of the place they had found change the experience? Perhaps. It may have given new context to the hushed atmosphere, the dim lights, the sparse ponies. Still, it doesn't seem like a place of grief, much as that would be called for. The ponies gathered at the sconces to pay respects to friends and family seem just as inclined to do so with looks of fond remembrance- wistful, perhaps, and a little sad, but small smiles on their faces.

Up above, the city seems relatively bright and noisy. The smells of the restaurants and food carts are sharp against the nose; even the composed manner most seaponies seem to carry themselves in during their day-to-day business seems a little exagerated at first. Is it a rude awakening from a peaceful reverie, or is it a chance to enjoy all the bustle and clatter and sensations of life with a newfound appreciation? Just what does a foal think when their curiousity takes them into such an unexpected place and back again?