Dances With Statues
IC date: Spring 53, 1008
OOC date: June 23, 2013
Location: Forest's Edge
PCs: Player Player

"Huh?" Aliella tilts her head as she stops to look back at the torches, but is sure to take one more look in front of her first… then below her, for what lies ahead is a very steep hill. At the bottom, there is a rapidly flowing river, bringing both sides together with only a thin trail of stepping stones. It appears there is no means of hesitating before taking the stone path. "Uh-oh…" Aliella gulps as she looks down the hill. "Um… anypony have any ideas?"
(OOC) Aliella: That's ok. There'll be plenty left of the scene by that time.
Pumpkin regards the path. "Ah don't rightly know. Ah say we just keep going an' figure it out as we go." She eyes the stepping stones.

(OOC) Tale-Chaser
Sadaka has bounded merrily down the passageway after Aliella, up until this point. A few yards back, her ears pricked. A couple feet later, she stopped bouncing. And by the time she's reached the top of that incline, she's got her ears flat and is practically creeping along. She peers down over the slope, gives a little "Eep!", and backpedals a few steps. That… that is quite the raging river down there. She wants nothing to do with that, nope nope nope.
Tale Chaser is the sort of pony who doesn't just walk down a dark spooky corridor, thank you very much. Then again, he is also the kind of pony that doesn't want to be left alone at the entrance while everypony plows ahead, so with a hurried skitter he catches up to the rest. He peers over Sadaka's head at the slope, and the water at the bottom. "Oh, water!" he says, in the tone of voice someone else might say 'oh, thank goodness, fresh air after having been sealed in this cave for days.'
(OOC) Aliella hoofbumps TC.
(OOC) Dream-Daze: Sadaka and TC. Such opposite ends of the water-loving spectrum.
(OOC) Tale-Chaser: Hey, we got her swimming once!

Dream Daze (She's been here the whole time, honest!) pokes her head up behind Sadaka and Pumpkin, half-perched on TC's back, peeking at Ali and the cliff. Ideas? Uh. She ducks back down again, sneaking past the pony pile to get her hooves next to the edge, crouched down on her belly, explorer's hat askew. She squints…and floats up the image of the most obvious solution: Foals hopping across rocks to cross the river. That's what those stones are there for, right?
(OOC) Sadaka: to be more specific you got her in the water clinging to Siyana going AAAAAAAAAAAAHHHH for like an hour once.
Quintessent-Rune leaned over Tale Chaser, peering down into the water. "Oh, water," she said dryly (ironicaly enough). Without her phylactery out taking a dip into he river seemed a good way to drown, especialy with the armor she was carrying.
Windrose has arrived.
(OOC) Windrose: Raah!
(OOC) Sadaka: whee, Windrose~ We've only just started up so I think it's all on +pot
Aliella takes the whistle given to her out of her saddlebag, and leans her head down to prod at the ground. The whistle is quickly covered in mud, which she wipes off on the ground before her before putting it back away. "I don't think it gonna be as easy as just going down there, guys. I think…" She takes a deep sigh before continuing. "I think the only way down there is really really /really/ fast."
Windrose has been here the entire time! Just kind of distracted at trying to figure out how everypony is going to get back -out- of the hole. So it takes her a moment to realize they got the door open and have started into the hidden passage. "Wha… hey, wait for me!" The pegasus beats hasty wing to catch up with the others.
(OOC) Aliella: There's a steep muddy hill with rapids at the bottom, and a small stone path along it.
(OOC) Aliella: It's like a slip and slide into even more water and pain.
(OOC) Sadaka: is the ceiling high enough to just fly it, or is it too small a tunnel?
(OOC) Aliella: It was high enough in my head, assuming you have about as much freedom of movement as a pegasus.
(OOC) Aliella: Like, one and a half Iron Wills high.
(OOC) Sadaka nods. "So still pretty confined but a good flier could probably pull it off."
(OOC) Windrose: So plenty of room, though it may be limited maneuvering.
(OOC) Aliella: Yeah, if you're more along the lines of airplane maneuvering, it'd be tricky.

Dreamy gets this /super-focused/ look on her face, tongue stuck out one corner of her mouth and tail swishing. She crouches, totally looking like she's about to go ahead and try to cross. This is what adventurers do, isn't it? There may even be the echo of Daring Do's themesong playing in her head.
(OOC) Aliella: If only because of the landing.
(OOC) Aliella: On the bright side, it could make for a comical splat on the wall, followed by sliding down it.
(OOC) Sadaka: XD
(OOC) Aliella: It could hypothetically still get you on the other side.
Sadaka slowly stretches a hoof out to poke at the mud. Yup. That's muddy. There's no walking slowly down /that/. She oggles at TC as though he'd grown a second head, at least for a moment. Then she's back to staring down at the river. "There, uh… m-maybe there's… another tunnel."
"Well, er- here. Let's…" says Tale Chaser, which is apparently his way of saying 'I'll go first,' judging by the way he inches up to the incline and scoots his butt down and makes ready to sort of clamber down. And, you know, he does! For a few feet. With his legs increasingly spread-eagled and his weight distributed, he's doing a good job of not sliding down at a breakneck speed. But gravity takes over and with a little squeal he shoots down the incline towards the river, skates across the landing at the bottom on a layer of mud, rockets over the stones, then bounces off the first step like a pinball to land in the drink. Plop!
Pumpkin gently pats Sadaka on the shoulder. "Jes' take a deep breath, Sadaka. Ah know you're scared, but we gotta do it."
Quintessent-Rune facehooved at Tale Chaser, then sighed and turned to look behind her… ah! "Servant! Would you kindly offer some assistance in guiding us safely down the incline?" Silence. "No, that's in truth not really a request as much as it is a order… Why? Perhaps due to the fact I've endowed you with the ability to fly? Now would you kindly - and it's a order - offer your assistance?" She pointed at the slope.
(OOC) Sadaka: that mental image of TC just like, mudsliding right on down, is somehow hilarious.

Dreamy's ears perk up. Well there goes TC! …Yup, that's about how she figured it'd go. It even looked fun! Thus there are no further reasons why the little foal shouldn't follow suit. She straightens up, puffs out a breath, puts a hoof over her hat, and scoots over the muddy edge! There's an open-mouthed look of 'squee!' on her face, sliding on her filly rump down the hillside, conveniently down the path that TC just took now that it's kind of indented for perfect pony sizes, though when she hits the water she doesn't so much skip across as hit the edge of the river, wind up airborne all in one go, and somersaulting to an eventual landing on her back on the other side, straight into more mud. Splat!
As Tale-Chaser lands in the water, the first thing he may see is that it's very deep. In fact, the 'stones' that made the path, eight of them, are all pillars. The coarse rapids motion him towards one of them, but before he even has the chance to react, it sinks, leaving seven to try and avoid as the rapids spiral around. Fortunately for him, the waters have also slowed down just enough to make moving about slightly easier for a seapony.

Aliella is too distracted to notice that as she pats Sadaka on the back. "C'mon, it's not that bad. Y'just gotta make it on the stones, and if you don't, we'll help you- uh?" Looking back to point at the stones. "Where'd the first one go?"
(OOC) Aliella: I'll do the next scene pose in a few poses.
Windrose catchs up just in time to see ponies.. sliding down a mud slope? Hah. Too bad for the land walkers. For a pegasus she just has to keep gliding along, watching everyone else take the fast way down. And messy way down. Thankfully she doesn't have to go that way, and get messy. The only mud she likes is mud packs!
(OOC) Aliella imagines the King Ramses "Aw, c'mon," coming from the walls.
Sadaka prances in place. "But… but… but…" apparently, she can't come up with anything more coherent, because there goes Tale Chaser, and that brings out another "Eeep!" And then Dreamy follows, and the little zebra gives a little squeak, taking a step forward and fluttering her wings, looking as if she'd /really like/ to go and dart over and make sure that her friend's okay, but there's /water/ in the way. At least she's got her front hooves to the mud now?
A few moments after he lands in the water, Tale Chaser surfaces with a splash. The kick of a fin behind him and the iridescent quality his coat has adopted may offer an indication how he is managing to navigate the water so handily, though even with skillful swimming it's an effort to keep up with the curant and not get swirled around. "The columns are sinking!" he calls up to the others. "We might have to hurr- ohhh-" He trails off as Dream Daze sails overhead. Goodness gracious! His eyes go all wide behind his glasses. "That was super impressive, Drea- hubrrlf-" Water splashes in his face and he gets swept away for a moment only to pop back up further up the stream. "Urghf! I'll help fish out anypony who falls in," which is totally something he can do, yeah, "but we need to go!"
Pumpkin puts her head down and charges forward. "Yee-haw! C'mon, Sadaka!" She starts hopping across the stones: she's awful agile, it seems.
Aliella has reconnected.
Aliella has partially disconnected.
Aliella has reconnected.
(OOC) Aliella: My computer suddenly had a very hard time processing information.
(OOC) Dream-Daze: Oohf.

Mud-Covered Dream-Daze wallows in her mudpit for a moment, shaking off the daze of so much spinning. Oogh. She gets back on shakey hooves, wobbles over to where her hat landed, and brushes some mud off of it before plunking it on her (much more muddy) mane. She's more brown than blue now, but at least she's okay, and trying to scamper where she can meet/follow Pumpkin! She wouldn't deny, that was fun~
"Yeah, you ponies need to hurry up! No time for second guessing!" Windrose circles around and stops to hover over the water, just in case she needs to help pull someone out. Because com'n, Tale Chaser is a nerd. How strong is he gonna be? No offense, nerdfish.
(OOC) Sadaka snrk.
(OOC) Quintessent-Rune: And I should look into going to bed.
(OOC) Sadaka: aww. well, sleep is good.
(OOC) Pumpkin hugs QR.
(OOC) Aliella: Seeya, Rune! Thanks for coming!
(OOC) Dream-Daze hugs Rune!
As soon as Dream-Daze crosses the bottom of the hill, one can see a stone at the opposite end sink, leaving Pumpkin with a much larger stride to take should she wish to cross. Not only that, but as she is crossing, the stone behind her sinks as well, leaving only five. Those in the water can find it substantially easier to traverse, as the rapids have slowed down even further.

"Huh…" Aliella stares at the sinking pillars. "Maybe if I…" She takes a few steps back and charges forward to build momentum, but flails and pushes herself back before sliding down, turning to Sadaka. "Hey, think that we need everypony in this together if we make it across. Look." She points to the rapids once more, which are adorned with less foam than before, and one colt floating blissfully. "There's eight of us. I don't wanna make you do this, but I think we need you to if we wanna get across."
(OOC) Aliella counted Magpie in that.
(OOC) Quintessent-Rune snugs. "Sorry for not being any good though!"
Quintessent-Rune has left.
Windrose hovers overhead, scratching her head with a hoof. "Is it just me or does each pillar sink when they're touched?"
Sadaka blinkblinks at Aliella. "I… I…" she gulps thickly, and takes a deep breath, and closes her eyes - and then opens them again, because aaaaah no that's a terrible idea - and slowly, /slowly/, edges forward onto the mud, all four hooves splayed and wings spread wide to try and keep herself from sliding too badly. How effective that will be is debatable but she's going to /try/.
Pumpkin is pretty much just running at this point, not stopping until she hits solid ground that isn't going to sink on her. "Y'all gotta just keep movin'! It'll be okay, all right?"
"I can't tell!" burbles Tail Chaser, who is increasingly dizzy as the currents toss him about.
(OOC) Tale-Chaser: (that was in response to Windrose, should have clarified)
Aliella has partially disconnected.
(OOC) Aliella: Almost done with the pose. Has Sadaka actually dived in, though?
(OOC) Dream-Daze: Sadaka~
(OOC) Sadaka: oh, sorry! No, I have not. give me a sec~
(OOC) Aliella: If you want I can work the pose around a pose of yours. I've got it all done mostly, and it could save a bit of time for both of us.
(OOC) Sadaka: sure~
Long distance to Aliella: Sadaka was going to have her get about halfway down before she starts sliding, then wind up not being able to stop herself; with two stones missing she'd probably wind up dunked and trying to grab the nearest stone in a panic. I can type it up and page it to you if you give me just a second~
(OOC) Sadaka got distracted by a cat.

Aliella nods at Sadaka as she prepares herself, and does the same, finally giving the last budge to slide down the hill. As the two fillies hit the water, they are able to hear, under the water, the sound of two more pillars sinking, followed by less of the white noise of the rapids. Spitting out some water as she surfaces, Aliella tries to tread in place as she counts the pillars before her. "C'mon, guys," she shouts at the top of the hill.
(OOC) Aliella: Gah
(OOC) Aliella: Lemme append to this
You paged Aliella with 'you can tweak it to fit in in however it'll work best!'.
Windrose waves at Aliella from where she's hovering overhead. "I'm right here. I don't think anyone else is left up there now."

Sadaka makes it about halfway down 'slowly' before the mud gets just a bit too slippery to keep that up. She slips, and tumbles with a wail, hooves kicking and wings askew as she skids right on down into the river. On the one hoof, with two stones missing on this side, at least there's not one right there for her to smack into. On the other hoof, with two stones missing on this side, there's nothing for her to land on but water! She flails and splashes and kicks and wails, trying to grab - well, /anything/!

Lo and Behold, the trail is down to three stones, fortunately after Pumpkin decided to traverse to the end. The doorway is wide open, but it may be fairly difficult to get the rest of the ponies up on the ground by herself.
The rapids have also come to an even slower pace, almost that of an average river.
(OOC) Dream-Daze is assuming climbing up to the door is a slippery/muddy affair or somesuch? :o
Tale Chaser squawks with alarm as he sees the pair of fillies make splashdown. "Hold on!" he calls, before ducking under the water. Aliella seems to have the situation in control, so the seapony goes to support Sadaka- reaching up and seizing her around the middle to bring her close to the surface. He might get kicked along the way, but that just sort of happens along the way. The nerdpony sputters above the surf. "W-Windrose! Grab her!!"
(OOC) Aliella: It's more so just difficult to stay still long enough to grab on.
(OOC) Dream-Daze: Ohh.
Okay, so she was wrong, Tale Chaser actually managed to drag someone up. Surprise surprise surprise. But Windrose doesn't waste time teasing him about it as she dips down and hooks her forelegs around Sadaka, trying to keep her head out of the way of any flailing. "Whoa nelly, we've got you! Just calm down girl."
Tale-Chaser was aided by the buoyancy that desperation lends a flailing pony.
What is this 'calm down' Windrose speaks of? Sadaka doesn't quite seem to get the picture. She /does/, however, get picked up, and hey, another pony is as much an anything as anything else, so she proceeds to cling to Windrose like a vice. Which at least lessens the flailing.
"Miss Windrose! Go to the end!" Aliella shouts, clinging to a pillar. "That should slow it down enough!" At last, a safe assumption of what is going on is set in her mind, and it appears some progress is being made. "Just hang on, Sadaka! We're almost through!"

Dreamy isn't sure about all this. But at least there's progress! She's just tryin' to get out of the mud and over to where Pumpkin is now. Hopefully without need of an airlift or something.
Tale Chaser takes a moment to resecure his glasses, then paddles his way over to Aliella, popping up beside her. "You okay…? Do you need, ah, a… a tow?" he asks, nodding to the far 'bank' of the river.
As long as Windrose has her wings free they're okay, she's gotten use to having feral foals and baby twins clinging to her at this point. "Okay, close enough." At least she's not flailing so much as the pegasus wings it for the other side of the river.
"Yeah, that'd be great!" Aliella responds. As Windrose begins to hover above the ground at the other end, another pillar sinks, leaving a trail of… bubbles? Aliella is now out of view from Tale-Chaser for a moment, until she returns from where she rested, now better able to control her movement as the rapids slow to to an almost brisk pace. "… Nah, I think I got it. Come on!" Paddling towards the end of the bank, she brings her hooves to the dry ground and pulls herself up, flailing, falling, and repeating in the process, but eventually making it. As the last two ponies make their way across, the water is entirely still. "Is everypony OK?"
Dream-Daze flops onto the ground. She lifts a hoof up. Totally fine!
Pumpkin hops. "Ah'm fine. That was fun: let's do it again!" Hop hop hop!
Tale Chaser nods to Aliella, but stays close nonetheless, following her to the far side of the river. He manages to tug his way up onto the ledge with a bit of effort- forward body strength, the Neighchilles' heel of every nerd pony- and goes about doffing his phylactery and getting back into Tunnel Explorer Mode. "I think we all made it…" he says. "Gett back out might be, uh…"
Sadaka oggles at Pumpkin, staring for a long moment before giving a faint sneeze. She's muddy and soggy and panting and still looking a little bit panicked. "L-let's /not/."
"I think we've had enough of that specific event for the day." Gently Windrose sets Sadaka back down on the ground.
(OOC) Aliella: My connection might be dead.
(OOC) Aliella: Nope. cool.
(OOC) Aliella: Instead of waiting for a round of going through the door, would you guys care if I just went along to describe past that?

Dreamy joins Pumpkin in hopping after a moment or two. Hop hop hop~
(OOC) Dream-Daze: Go for it. :D
(OOC) Tale-Chaser: pLease do~
(OOC) Windrose: Go fo it
Another corridor is revealed through the door ahead of the group, again lit by torches. The room past it is somewhat less intimidating than the previous: a floor of marble tile. The only thing decorating the room, besides the torches, are statues of various ponies. The detail seems to be so perfect that they could have been petrified, though the stone blocks on which they sit suggest otherwise. Four of them are spaced out evenly at every four tiles: an earth pony, a pegasus, a unicorn, and a zebra, each taking on a different pose. Some appearing to bow, others appearing to reach for the sky.
Tale-Chaser pauses just inside the doorway, taking a moment to study the statues, and the tiles. This is right up his alley, as a scholar at a school of historical study with a mind towards ancient archaeology. But as he regards the statues, his expression falls a bit, and he peers down at himself. "I, uh, I don't think I can help with this one," he says. "It doesn't seem to be built for, er… sea… seaponies."

Dreamy gives TC a soft (if muddy) consoling pat, trotting into the room proper with little muddy hoofprints left behind. It's an awful pretty room, what with all the marble and everything! And the poses of the ponies… Dreamy beams, starting to mimic them. Bow. Reach for the sun! Whee~ Playing charades with statues.
"I can see why papa came here," Aliella muses, "Whoever made these was really good!" She trots about the statues, stopping at one to take out her whistle and poke at them. "Anypony in there?" Hopefully not; they don't repond. "It's gotta mean some'n, though. Or maybe…" She trots to the other end of the room, only to be met with another exceptionally detailed statue blocking her way, this time that of a dragon. Stifling a squeal, she tries to nonchalantly trot back to the group. "Nopethere'sdefintielysomethingtodohere."
Sadaka peers up at the statues curiously. She's slowly seeming to get over her earlier fright, though she's still a bit… skittery. "Huh. These are kinda neat." She reaches a hoof up to tap one, though she can't really reach much above the hooves, what with the stone blocks in the way. She glances over at Dreamy, and gives a small giggle. "What're you doing?"
Pumpkin peers at the statues, stopping to eyeball a unicorn statue that reminds her of her brother. "What is all this? These're neat lookin'."

Dreamy bounces over to the unicorn statue, too! She blinks at it, then lights her horn up to move her explorer's hat off of her head, and onto the head of the marble pony! She turns around, and strikes a pose. Pose! While grinning at Sadaka. She's playing with dolls. Big, heavy, pony-shaped, marble dolls. +
Windrose idly hovers to wear she looks the pegasus statue right in the eyes. "…. So, now what? Do these do anything or do we just go on?" You never know when the statues might be part of the traps or something.
Tale Chaser watches Dreamy for a moment, and smiles goofily, giggling slightly himself. Looks fun. He approaches the statue with a hat on, takes off his glasses, and easches up to put them on the stone unicorn's face, then steps back to admire his handiwork.

Except he just ends up squinting at it. He can't actually see how it looks very well. "Oh…"
The statue, a unicorn with a hoof extended upward, quickly moves across the marble tile, one tile towards the zebra statue to the right, the figure itself taking on a new stance, rotated 90 degrees, arm lowering a few inches. Aliella gasps and inspects the statue, then the one to the right of it, a zebra extending a hoof to its left. "I, uh… I don't get it."
Sadaka jumps and squeaks! Then peers up at the apparently moving statue. "…Are statues supposed to do that?" She hesitates a moment before moving to look up at the zebra. Look, it's stripey like her! After a moment's pondering, she glances over at Dreamy, then tries to mimic the zebra statue's pose. (The wings give her a moment's pause. She winds up just tucking them in with a shrug.)

Dreamy jumps when the statue moves, winding up on TC's back! She blinks at it, hat and glasses and all, then squints as Sadaka decides to mimic the zebra's pose. Hmm! She gives TC's neck a hug of apology, drops back down, and bounces back to the just-moved statue, tilting her head at it, and..also mirroring its pose again.
Aliella has reconnected.
Aliella has partially disconnected.
Aliella has reconnected.
Pumpkin leaps back, startled. "Ah don't reckon that's normal for statues. Maybe they do that in the big city?"
"Fascinating," says Tale Chaser, reaching up to adjust his glasses. Before realizing they're on the statue still. He sputters and stumbles after it until he can retrieve them.
Windrose yelps as the statue abruptly moves, resulting in her clinging to the pegasus statue she was previously exmanining. "What the hey did it do that for?!"
Likewise, the zebra statue moves across a tile, and rotates another nintety degrees, as does the unicorn statue. "Whoa…" Aliella beholds the statues once more. "So I guess that's how they move… but how do they get us out of here?" She looks up to the zebra statue again curiously and imitates its pose. As expected, it moves once more, now turned 180 degrees. The filly repeats the new pose as she looks at the other side of it and watches it move once more. "Nothing yet…"
"Maybe if we trigger them all at once…?" suggests Tale Chaser, looking between the others.
Aliella has partially disconnected.
"Or maybe they all have to be touching each other or something?" Windrose extracts herself from the pegasus statute, and then after a moment looking at it strikes the same pose as it.
Sadaka tilts an ear. Then her head. She watches the zebra statue move, then Aliella. Then, after a moment, she tries to mimic all of the poses, one after the other, adding in the spin. She's not the /most/ graceful, and kinda looks a little jerky, but it's a decent try. "S'like a dance or somethin'."
Pumpkin blinks at the statues, then peers at the Earth Pony statue and imitates it. "You mean like this? Ah wonder what all's in here, anyway?"
(OOC) Dream-Daze slinks away for dinner. Will be back soon~
Aliella has reconnected.
The zebra statue indeed moves with each pose Sadaka makes, eventually moving along a square and making every pose of the rest of the statues along the way. "I think you're right, Sadaka!" She peers at the statues of the other species of ponies, scratching her chin. "Maybe we just need to get them all going at once after all." After pointing at every other pony, taking account of those present, she wipes her forehead. "Phew. And I think we have enough ponies to do it."
(OOC) Pumpkin is kinda starting to fade here. "How much longer are we planning to go here?"
(OOC) Aliella: Another round or two, maybe.
(OOC) Sadaka: not much. We're probably gonna have to split it and pick up next week to finish it out.
(OOC) Aliella: If other ponies are fading, we could pause here.
(OOC) Aliella: It wouldn't be the most inconvenient thing for me since I know what comes next. >_>
Tale-Chaser takes up place in front of one of the statues, and starts mimicking it. He's not a bad dancer when he has obvious directions to follow.
Pumpkin hops from pose to pose, seemingly enjoying herself. "These things are nifty! Ah sure hope ah can remember this here dance when this is all over."
(OOC) Tale-Chaser: please tell me one of the poses involves hunkering down and wiggling your butt in the air because honestly any treasure/secret/whatever that is uncovered by booty booty booty booty rockin' everywhere is worth the price of admission
(OOC) Pumpkin points to her nose, points to TC.
Windrose just keeps coping poses to get the pegasus statue to wherever it's suppose to be. How do these things even know when the right pony is posing to move them? Mystery for the ages right there.
Aliella joins in the dancing as well, eventually figuring out the patterns from watching both the statues, and other ponies. The statues begin to pick up their pace, faster and faster, until they seem to create white walls separating the dispersed ponies. At least, the statues slow down, and between the two middle statues, a large statue can be seen. "Eep- hey!" Aliella squeals, then stops to inspect the statue. "This was blockin' the way earlier. I guess…" She looks over at the door in the distance, seeing no statue in the way. "Yeah, I guess we can go! That was more fun than the last one!"