An Imperfect Storm
IC date: Winter 91, 1006
OOC date: March 19, 2012
PCs: Jellybean, Snowfield, Hayseed, Typhoon-Wave
NPCs: None
GM: None

Snowfield tries not to come to turn during the day, what with all the ponies everywhere who she might, audible gasp, have to interact with. Her increasinly frustrating artist's block is reaching intolerable levels, however, and lacking a better idea she's decided to take Purple Prose's advice and seek out something to occupy herself in Horseshoe Harbor. The little mare has foregone her cloak today since the vast majority of winter has been successfully cleaned away and it's actually pretty pleasant out, all things considered.

Blech.

She's currently sitting on a bench along one of the trotting paths outside of town, engaging in a rousing session of ponywatching and hoping something with strike her interest sufficiently to make a sculpture out of it.

Exile? No, that would be a terribly plan. After all Jellybean doesn't know the first thing about living off the land and then Horseshoe Harbor would be minus a weatherpony, and even if Jellybean can be a bit whiny at times he's not going to give up on his new home. On the other hand right about now he's feeling pretty down and has been keeping himself to the edge of town, if only to keep other ponies from getting rained on. Or hailed on, as the case may be.

Jellybean comes into Snowfield's view while he's trying to shoo some insistent fogbanks out of town. He waves a hoof to the tiny mare and offers a friendly little "Hi Snowfield."

The white unicorn tilts her head quizically at Jellybean as the other pony says hello to her. "…why are you still leading that thing around?" she asks in lieu of offering a greeting in kind. "It's not supposed to be rainy for New Year's, you'll make a big mess of everything." Her gaze drifts up at the cloud above the pegasus, pondering its fluffiness and what manner of art it could make.

"I'm not leading it anywheeeere," the big baby blue baby whines, "it won't leave me alone. I talked to the Zebras about it and they said they'd get back to me. It's a curse, or a magic cloud, or something." Little bits of hail are bouncing off of him as he talks.

Snowfield shakes her head. "There's no such thing as a magic cloud, no moreso than there is magic steam or magic snow. It's all just water." She stands up on her bench, gives him a thoughtful look, then LEAPS off of it and attempts to knock the pegasus out of the air.

Jellybean blinks at the smaller mare and lets out a squawk of protest when she leaps up and tries to pull him out of the air. He acquieces, coming down to the ground and blinking at her some more. "Does this mean you want to be my very special somepony?"

"Absolutely not," Snowfield says as she gives him a rough push to the side. "I'm cloud watching and you're in the way." She keeps her eyes on Jellybean's stalker cloud to see what it does as she gives the pony another hard push.

Snowfield. Snowfield.
Look at his eyes.
Q___Q
See that?
IT'S BECAUSE OF YOU.
Don't you feel awful?
I bet not.
Monster.
Jellybean is a peaceful soul and accepts the shoves with a good-natured little whimper of complaint and wobbles out of the other pony's way. "Oh. Sorry." The cloud, meanwhile, is feeling contrary and stays more or less where it is, maybe drifting a bit on the second push.

Snowfield doesn't notice the Q___Q at all because her gaze is turned upwards at the moment. "See? Not magical at all, it's staying in one place even though you're moving when you get caught by surprise." She moves to stand underneath of the cloud, horn glowing faintly as she wards off any hailstones that dare to fall on top of her. "The reason it's following you around is because controlling it, if only subconsciously."

"But I'm really not, honest!" Jelly bean stamps one of his hooves in a decidedly petulant fashion at Snowfield's somewhat bossy, know-it-all approach to this problem. "Here, watch. I'll get rid of it and it'll be back. Nothing I'm doing: I'm not pushing a raincloud around everywhere, it's following me." He flaps up into the air and gives the cloud a good hard buck. And apparently has forgotten everything he knows about handling the weather, because if he hadn't he would've known better than to kick a cloud full of hail. Ice chunks, everywhere, and one dazed pegasus on his back on the ground.

Hayseed wanders by, meanwhile. Well, 'wanders' might not be accurate. She is moving at an admittedly awkward, somewhat sideways trot that incorporates a lot of zigs and zags and the occasional spin. Mostly caused by her constant attempts to look behind her and lift her hooves somewhat unnaturally high with each step.

Why the odd gait? Well, that might have something to do with the trail of little, colorful flowers that are growing up unusually quickly everwhere her hooves hit the dirt. Flowers that she was both attempting to gawk at and, at the same time, /not step on/, because now that would just crush them, and that would be sad.

Snowfield, expert with ice and snow that she is, knows exactly what happens when a pegasus bucks a hail cloud. Her horn flares bright blue as she catches the hailstones which proceed to take up an orbit around her like a tiny solar system. It's almost adorable.

The white mare walks over to Jellybean and stands over him, looking down at the poor boy with a bored expression on her face. "If you're that insistant that it's following you, would you like me to render it immobile?" she asks flatly. "I could freeze it into an ice cube, ice cubes don't float." Her hail hula hoop not withstanding, of course.

The entrance of Hayseed is, at least for the moment, ignored by Snowfield. She has more precious projects to ponder than passing ponies prancing precariously over popping posies.

(OOC) Jellybean: Alliteration: the official sport of Horseshoe Harbor.
(OOC) Hayseed: "Why are we all so alliterative now? Jellybean, what have you wrought?
(OOC) Jellybean is a trendsetter.
(OOC) Snowfield: I blame the town name.

"Well… do you think that would work? I guess it would. We'll have to wait for it to show up again, though." He gets off his back, sees Hayseed and her… walk? He waves a hoof at her, blinking. "What's going on, Hayseed?"
Hayseed blinks and glances up, smiling and waving back albeit a bit distractedly. "Hey there, Jellybean! And… ice wall pony. Don't recall if I ever did get your name! You ran off so quick after that whole mess."

"I don't see why it wouldn't," Snowfield says. "How long after you buck it does it take for the cloud to 'come back'?" She still has her doubts that it is out to get the pegasus.

She finally deigns to glance in Hayseed's direction. "Oh, it's you, the tall one," she comments. A quick glance towards Jellybean as the stallion mentions this one's name. "Hayseed, is it? I had urgent matters to attend to at my home after that filly angered all the animals at once. Luckily nothing was trampled in the stampede."

"I wasn't really counting, because I've been busy with work, but I want to say about an hour or so?" He looks around at the sky: no clouds right now. He looks around, trots in place a little, looks back to Hayseed. "Is everything okay, Hayseed?"

This question gave the tall unicorn pause. Well… things weren't… /un/okay, but… hm. Hayseed glanced back at the flower trail, tilting an ear. "Well… I'm brightening up the town! Though not exactly… intentionally." She trotted over to them, still trying not to trod on the little blooms.

Snowfield looks down at the flowers blooming around Hayseed's feet. "How are you not intentionally doing that? Magic doesn't just happen on its own." It has /rules/, after all. She gives a few of the flowers an experimental poke with her hoof, then leans down to pick and eat one.

Hayseed glances sideways at her. "Well, I don't entirely… know, honestly. I don't /mean/ to do it. They're certainly pretty, but nopony's told me how to set up the flowers for tonight's decorations yet, and I don't think 'just trail them everywhere' is quite it." She tilted her head. "Oh, magically grown ones are never quite as good for snacking, hun, though I suppose they'll do if you're peckish."

Suddenly, clouds.

Hundreds of them.

Well, no. But over the next minute the sky DOES grow noticably darker as a few new clouds jostle for position in the skies above, bulging and wobbling randomly. Jellybean looks up and swallows nervously. "That didn't happen last time."

Snowfield chews the flower thoughtfully. "You're right, it does taste weird. Kind of a… hollow flavor?" She thinks about this for a few moments. "Empty, even. It doesn't taste bad, it just… doesn't taste?" She'll need to consider this more later, perhaps this train of thought could lead to new inspiration.

When the sky begins to darken the little unicorn rolls her shoulders back to stretch. "Alright, I'll admit that this isn't standard behavior for clouds." Her horn begins to glow icy blue as she focuses on the closest few clouds, trying to rearrange the water in them, push the water together and lock it into a crystal to heavy to stay in the air.

It… doesn't really seem to be working as intended. Instead the entire clouds are starting to merge together into an even bigger, more threatening-looking cloud and stopping there, instead of freezing and drifting towards the ground like they're supposed to.

Hayseed blinks and glances up at the gathering clouds. "Well… that's a bit unusual." She lays her ears back almost timidly — well, as 'timid' as a pony her size and stature could quite pull off — as the clouds start to gather together; even the flowers seem to droop slightly as she glances down at Snowfield. "Uh… what are you… I'm not entirely sure that making them bigger will help matters."

Jellybean is about to say something when Snowfield decides that now is a time for ACTION. Also MAKING THINGS WORSE. Instead he launches himself skyward at the now-larger cloud-mass and… goes right through it. Well. Goes right through it and then, judging by the bulge that shoots up on the other side, gets stuck inside. A little pony-sized bulge can be seen bouncing around inside the cloud.

The tiny unicorn closes her eyes and concentrates on her spell, trying to put it back on track. "I'm not trying to make them bigger, I'm trying to make them heavier," she says with a hint of annoyance in her voice towards Hayseed. "The water in them SHOULD be freezing and making them sink to the ground." Should be, but isn't. Her mouth twists into a frown as she reaches out with her horn to try the spell again, imagining the water in the cloud obeying her bidding.

"W-wait, I…" Snowfield begins to say, cutting herself off with a sharp inhale as a deeply discordant note echoes in her head. Keep your focus, Snowfield, you're a better magician than this. It's not like the clouds are salinated, keeping them under control should be easy. And yet something is very, very wrong. The gentle flows of magic she's familiar with feel more like raging rapids, the water in the clouds may as well be actively fighting against her.

The mare's eyes shoot open, her normally bright blue irises now glowing as brightly as her her horn is. "I can't— it won't stop!" The spell around Jellybean's cloudy prison begins to go out of control, arcing out like lightning towards the other clouds in the sky, drawing them into the mass like some sort of cumulowhirlpool. "Somepony, h-help!" she gasps.

Hayseed gives a startled whinny and backs up a few steps, flowers momentarily forgotten though any she trod on regrew themselves pretty quickly. "What the…" she gapes up at the clouds, looking momentarily stunned and quite at a loss for how to react; she was /not/ a weatherpony, and this was /far/ from her forte.

Typhoon-Wave arrives from the town square.
Typhoon-Wave has arrived.

Wait. Hold on. Seriously? There were no storms today. Typhoon would /know/ if there were storms scheduled for today. Well… at least, she /should/ know. But nopony had mentioned storms. And really, this looked like the sort of storm she would've liked to be in on, she thought to herself a bit mopily as she jumped off the cloud she'd been resting on. Jumped off, because said cloud was currently heading at a rather rapid pace towards said storm. Really… if this was planned, somepony could've, you know, mentioned it. She's a weatherpony too.

But… there didn't seem to be any weatherponies present. Just Unicorns. One flowery. One glowing. Glowing? Huh… "Okay, so… wait… what's going on here?" she called down at them. Unicorns and weather usually didn't mix.

Snowfield hears what she thinks is a voice, but the source of the sound is lost amidst the noise of the out of control spell in her mind. "Please, make it stop!" she gasps as she looks around wildly. She doesn't lock eyes with Typhoon, but the light shining from her pupils and the panicked, pained expression on her face should be more than enough to let the purple pegasus know that something is horribly wrong here, not to mention that the glow from her horn and eyes is a matching shade of ice blue to the glow that seems to be coming from the core of the immense cloud mass.

The cloud, for its part, menaces with bolts of blue magic that cast every shadow in stark relief.

Hayseed looks back and forth between Snowfield and the cloud for a moment before giving herself a firm shake and hurrying over to the little mare. "Okay… okay, hun, just calm down… deep breaths, you can get this under wraps…" she glanced around frantically, trying to think. "Uh, um… dangit…" she glances down at the flowers, blinking. "Wait! Okay, um… lavender, right, calm. Okay." She gulps a bit, seeming rather nervous herself as her own horn began glowing green; purple stalks began shooting up around them almost immediately, spreading /much/ quicker than she'd intended — and likely getting a good bit taller — but at least having the desired effect of filling the windy air with the soothing scent.

Typhoon-Wave blinks and frowns deeply. Okay. This… was not scheduled. And not normal. She took a deep breath, looking over at the magic-laced clouds. "…Pleasepleaseplease don't let me mess this up horribly…" she muttered under her breath before charging towards the clouds, circling around them a few times to wrangle them together before diving into them and weaving in and out in an attempt to break them apart.

Snowfield continues to look around wild-eyed, not sure of her surroundings and the great din in her mind. The scene of lavender all around her cuts through her confusion like a knife, however, giving the tiny unicorn something concrete to latch onto in addition to soothing the swirling confusion in her mind.

This seems to have a related effect on the great stormcloud. The glow at its core lessens, and while it doesn't break apart as Typhoon might hope it DOES let her create a few holes that don't seal back up immediately. Holes large enough that a certain other weatherpony might be able to escape out of them.

Typhoon-Wave blinks, given a bit of pause as the other Pegasus suddenly rockets out of the cloud and awaaaaaaay. "Uh…huh." She stared after him for a second before giving herself a light shake and getting back to work on the surprisingly stubborn clouds.

Hayseed looks rather startled by the pure… volume of lavender she'd grown so quickly; that was not entirely what she'd been going for. But hey… it seemed to be working! Sort of. At least it smelled like lavender now. "That's it, sugar, just… deep breaths, calm down, you're good…"

The chaos in Snowfield's head is replaced by a dizzying lavender haze which seems to muffle everything rather than drown it out. She hears Hayseed's voice as if through water, muffled but understandable, just barely. Deep breaths, that's right, controlling yourself is the first step in controlling the elements. She sways on her hooves unsteadily as the glow fades from her eyes and her horn.

At that moment the great cloud in the sky becomes an ordinary thunderhead, with all the effects one might associate with it. No longer held together by magic it begins pouring rain heavily upon the land and houses outside of Horseshoe Harbor, doing an excellent job of washing away the last remnants of winter snow.

Without the magic holding it together, it wasn't all that difficult for Typhoon to break it apart, bucking and dashing through it as she broke it down bit by bit into managable chunks, then broke those chunks into wisps that dissipated easily.

Hayseed gave a small sigh of relief as the cloud began to clear away, leaving her drenched and dripping but unable to keep from grinning slightly. "Whoo. Never a dull moment around here! What just happened, now?"

Snowfield stares blankly ahead for a few moments, wet mane plastered flat against her face and neck. She opens her mouth to say something but dizziness and exhaustion steal the breath from her and she instead falls over into the field of lavender. Looks like Hayseed won't be getting a meaningful answer any time soon.

Rumors
Message: 3/7 Posted Author
New Year's Eve Storm Tue Mar 20 The Grapevine
A freak, unscheduled storm on New Year's Eve appears to have done a great job washing away the last remaining snow that lurking in the corners of Horseshoe Harbor! And by 'freak' we mean the stormcloud was glowing bright blue, blotted out all sunlight over the residential district, and downpoured for five, ten minutes before a lone weatherpony got it under control and cleared the skies again.

There is also an immense field of large lavender plants growing on a hillside at the town outskirts, underneath of where the cloud was. Locals don't have any idea where it came from, it seems to have come into full bloom while nopony was looking.