Into The Hive
IC date: Summer 52, 1008
OOC date: August 11, 2013
Location: Wintersong Forest - Deep Wilderness
PCs: Solar-Wind, Wishy-Washy
NPCs: The Windigo
GM: Snowfield

Windigo's Kiss is an incredibly rare flower, known for growing in only the harshest of environments. It's harder to get much harsher than the Wintersong Forest so that may be a good place to start looking if somepony wanted to get their hands on the rare and incredibly valuable plant! However, much like its namesake, the Windigo's Kiss hates being around others like it and will not grow when other plants are nearby. This makes the Wintersong Forest a terrible place to start looking.

This should be a fun adventure.

Wishy-Washy goes through her mental checklist of her things one last time… she's got canned goods, her hatchet she's been using to cut tinder, her Jambiya that she sometimes uses in her acts, a bedroll and waterskin, her quilt rolled up, and her cloak that she's been wearing to help cut down on the cold… this was about as prepared as she was going to get to go into the depths of the wilderness. she had a sort-of mental note of that map hoarfrost had, but she wasn't about to endanger young fillies to do this, nor bother neither Bright-Ice or Sunshine-Stormcloud to abandon their duties to go on a fool's errand; she had to venture deeper… find a clue, find that old changeling hive, find some Windigo's Kiss… maybe even more pages to the journal! Something had to give! Wishy trudges forward on her own, keeping quiet and alert as she readies her magic to draw the curved knife at a moment's notice.

"Hold it, what are you doing out here?" asks the the deeply cloaked fireguard stallion, as he paces through the outskirts of the trees coming from the direction of Daybreak Village. Solar-Wind is wrapped in his former winter-wastes garb to keep the chill down, and he looks on with concern to the unicorn mare that has wandered out this far. "Are you coming to Daybreak? I, I don't recognize you" he asks curiously.

Wishy-Washy shakes her head quickly. "Neigh. besides, I don't think I am very welcome there after my last visit. regardless, I am well aware of the dangers that lay ahead of me. it has taken me a bit just to steel myself to venture fourth…"

Solar-Wind says "Aye, I've been out of town lately" he shakes his head some with a little shrug and ponders, "So you're going in regardless" he pauses, "I see" the pegasus looks around the other pony, "Just you I see, It looks like you need an escort for this journey, If you'll allow me a moment to collect a pack, I could offer you any assistance you should need, its not a place to travel alone in." Solar mentions."

"If you can handle yourself and are willing to face the danger, I would appreciate the help, mister…?" The cyan mare pauses, waiting for the other pony's name.

Solar-Wind offers a rather formal bow, complete with his wings spread wide, and down, "Captain Solar-Wind of the Equestrian Fireguard, but you may call me Solar" he offers, "And whom would you be?" he asks as he regains his posture. The stallion makes a note, "I actually live here in the forest, just on the outskirts of Daybreak Village along with my wife Plot-Twist" he offers softly

Wishy-Washy bows in turn and does a little flourshed spin, every step of her hooves being graceful and dainty. "I am Wishy Washy of the far off arid sands of Saddle Arabia… I am -NOT- the most seasoned adventurer, but I can handle myself .

Solar-Wind Ooooh's softly, "Far of lands indeed, I hope you packed warm clothing, for the forest is unforgiving with its chill, you have experience with the sands not the snows I could imagine" he intones with a little smile, "I' should retrive my gear if we are to go further" he asks//suggests

Wishy-Washy says "please do. I have dressed my warmest… so yes. I shall wait here and await your return."

Solar-Wind tips his head in acknolodgement, then turns and takes to his wings cruising up firstly, then dives down and through Daybreak Village, disapearing from view for a time.

Solar-Wind returns carrying much the gear he would for fighting fires, though tailored more for rugged outland adventures. Ropes, and gear, camp ration packets, and waterpacks, small firestarters, and a bedroll, tucked about a small flightworthy pack that sits betwixt his wings looking overall quite minimal. His winter-wastes garb does him well for warmth, it was designed for such afterall. "I'm Ready when you are Miss Wishy Washy!" he strikes a grin and points towards the forest

And so, both would-be adventuring ponies equiped for the trek into the forest, the journey commences. The forest seems darker and more ominous than it normally might thanks to the cloud cover stealing away what little sunlight normally makes it through the the treetops, but that shouldn't be much of a hindrance to a group with a unicorn among its ranks.

Wishy-Washy indeed lights her horn up, walking right along. she breathes shallow breaths trying not let the icy air get the best of her.

Solar-Wind walks along side the pony//flashlight, "err, Thanks, good light, light is good" he chuckles softly to himself, "Ya warm enough? I brought extra blankets just in case"

"I am fine… but there are a couple of things I am looking for… Mainly, I am looking for any leads on the snow witch's disappearance or where the winidigos could be hiding. there was a map hoarfrost had that showed a changeling hive out here…

A prickling of the mane and the sensation that somepony… or maybe something… is watching the pair trek through the forest begins to gnaw at the edge of one's consciousness. Out in the trees a strange blue light glows weakly.

Solar-Wind pauses mid-stride and looks around, wings up and agitated, he looks around, turns leaps into a low hover, making a slow turn as if taking in all the forest in a visual sweep, "something's out there, uhh Hey Wishy, just how good is your magic?" he asks with concern in his voice as he gazes about. He's of the sort that follows instincts, feelings, that itch, and right bout now, there's some feelings going on right there, out there

GAME: Solar-Wind made an unskilled roll with an outcome of Abysmal.

Wishy-Washy draws her Jambiya, seeming ill at ease at this point. "My magical aura is gold… hmm…" keeps on walking where she can see another light that isn't hers per se, but keeps a level of caution about her.

Whatever is glimmering in the trees seems content for the moment to lurk out in the woods. It waits for the two ponies to begin moving again and then follows just closely enough for its light to be seen, but not so close as for its body to be spotted.

Solar-Wind does see the light, but stays close to Wishy-Washy, "We've gotten something's attention" he gulps some, "Wonderful" he grumbles, "Soo, just what can you do with that magic of yours, some unicorns have keep specailities I've heard" he mentions more asks curiously, "Special tallent? Cutie Mark skill?" he asks for education sake, in case of well, in case whatever that is catches up with them.

Wishy-Washy ulps a bit, keeping the dagger drawn. "I am a dancer by profession… I have learned some wind control and illusions to aid in my show that coould potentially drive back any foes, but… yes. keep your wits about you and stay on the ready…" she takes a look around herself, doing a spin around….

GAME: Wishy-Washy made an unskilled roll with an outcome of Bad.

Wishy-Washy likely spots nothing.

The creature in the forest isn't making any attempt to keep itself hidden. Wishy will catch a brief glimpse of light flitting between the trees, enough to warn her that something is out there, before it disappears again.

A cheerful, musical trill eminates from somewhere around the pair when the Saddle Arabian mentions being a dancer.

Solar-Wind looks to Wishy-Washy, "Dancer, and illusionist hmm, and a bit of wind magic hmm?" he asks, "If I provide a upthrust windburst, can you direct that through the woods around us, maybe, give us a brief bit of confusion going to this, this whatever?" he asks. The windburst will drive the snow around us, maybe confuse it." he ponders outloud not sure of what ever is following them, "but that sound, uhh, what was that?" he asks outloud pausing midflight to pause, He asks outloud, "Who are you?"

GAME: Solar-Wind made a skilled roll with an outcome of Okay.

Wishy-Washy blinks a bit at the trill, looking around quickly as she twirls the dagger once. "Yes, show yourself! We will not harm you if you come out and show that you mean no harm!"

There are no further sounds from the forest but the glow seems to intensify as if it was getting closer. It darts between the trees quickly for a moment, then stops and waits with a slow pulse of light.

Solar-Wind lands beside Wishy-Washy, "Uhh, perhaps you should dance" he suggests politely to her. "it seemed to uhh, 'like' that idea or something, I don't know with this, this ghost?" he offers, "Is that what you are?" he asks aloud

Wishy-Washy examines the forest around her to see if she's got decent room to dance before starting to gently step about in a rythmic fashion, her horn glowing brighter to provide better illumination as well as to swish the curved blade around in a way that compliments her own dancing, seeing if that draws whatever it is closer. "I hope this works… I just… don't want to exhaust myself by kicking up too much wind… not to mention that it's so cold and the wind so cutting and icy already…!"

The glowing brightens when Wishy begins to move and it trills cheerfully again. The creature appears to be moving closer for a better look, but there's still nothing visible in the forest even though the shadows being cast indicate it should only be behind the first row of trees.

GAME: Solar-Wind made a skilled roll with an outcome of Bad.

Solar-Wind jumps into flight a little distance away, giving her some room, and isn't particularly gracefull, but he fly's patterns. no not gracefull, Flying sack of bricks gracefull about. But this is probably expected given his 'Mac' like size and stature. Well at least he's trying.

GAME: Wishy-Washy made a talent roll with an outcome of Okay.

The forest floor wasn't the most ideal hooving, especially given the snow that is about… between that and the cold, Wishy certainly doesn't put on the most impressive of her shows, but she's able to gyrate her hips in a fairly alluring manner!

The creature finally comes out into the open! Er, sort of? The source of the glow comes out from behind the trees with a happy trill and begins spinning around Wishy Washy, but there hardly seems to be anything there! A careful observer might notice a shadow that looks vaguely like a pony's head at the center of the glow, bouncing around with gusto, but for all intents and purposes it's just a light floating around the forest withough a corporeal form.

Solar-Wind makes room for the much better dancer and her new dancing 'partner' the light presence creature. He is a bit disturbed by it, but well, its not the oddest thing he's seen since he came to the harbor. New things everyday afterall. The Pegasus lands himself and unpacks a spare blanket, and pulls out a stout container of wiskey laced Cider (so it won't freeze, and still warm your belly) for when Wishy stops dancing, just so she won't catch a chill. "You're welcome to Join us" he offers politely to the light, as it seems harmless thus far along, may as well invite it along?

Wishy-Washy whirls around with the ghostly figure a little bit, smiling a bit before setting her hooves down and sheathing the knife, looking at the glowing blue figure. "Hello… can you speak at all…?"

The little ball of light whistles and trills at Wishy-Washy's question, bouncing around erratically. Apparently it's native language is "interpretive dance". It also flits around Solar-Wind's head, seemingly agreeable with coming along for the ride.

Solar-Wind watches the circling light, "I guess thats a yes you're coming with us, Ookay" he nods some, "Wishy-Washy, here bundle up, please don't catch cold" he offers her that spare blanket, "I also have a warm drink if you want, though go easy with it" he mentions with a little knowing grin, as he watches the new guest, "Never seen one of you before" he mentions to the light creature

Wishy-Washy nods and steps on over, laying down on the blanket and smiling up to the fire. "So, friend… I'm here searching for a friend named Snowfield. Do you know a pony by that name…?

The sprite whistles low and bobs from left to right. It doesn't know anypony by that name! But boy, is it excited to know two new ponies today who dance and fly.

Solar-Wind watches the 'sprite' if you will, and takes the left and right motion as a headshake no, "No, hmm, ok, well than looks like we continue on from here, Wishy-Washy, are you ok to continue?" he asks to be sure she didn't wear herself down too much. He hovers in place as he repacks his pack sans that one extra blanket which he gave to Wishy. "Do you offhand know which path we should take, to take us to that old Changeling hive?" he asks of the seemingly kindly sprite, "Could you lead the way?

The sprite bounces blankly at Solar-Wind. It has no idea what he's talking about!

Wishy-Washy nods and gets up, smiling. "do you at least want to light the way for us?" she looks to the will-o-wisp, smiling."

"I'd much appreciate it."

The floating nightlight can do that! It bounces up and down exhuberantly and then begins floating around Wishy's head, as if the pony was Equestria and the sprite a tiny sun.

Solar-Wind nods to Wishy-Washy as he takes his place beside her looking to the sprite, ok, no he gives them space, so he's off to the side a little bit, in his corner more or less. "Ok, so onward" he chimes in as the trek begins anew, with a stance toward 'lead on' to Wishy

Wishy-Washy walks along, giving her horn a much needed rest as she takes a swig of that warm drink that Solar wind had pulled out earlier, looking around to see if she can find anything she's been looking for. "I really hope this is it…

You wander off into the trees, hoping you'll be able to find your way…

Continued journeying through the forest yields no other surprises, thankfully. Wishy-Washy's mental map of the area has been generally correct and, with a pegasus around to scout above the trees, finding the old hive hasn't been too difficult. Exploring it, on the other hand, might be— the peak of the mountain seems to be the eye of the storm that has been throwing clouds at Horseshoe Harbor for over a month!

Solar-Wind looks up as he lands buffetted by the winds from above, "nasty weather for flying" he comments on landing, "No wonder the weather team has been having such difficulty, I, I don't remember it doing this when we came back from uhh, the other side" he comments with a shudder, and a tinge of panic, "I'll have to report this to Jellybean so he knows whats going on here" the big stallion mentions as he looks to the ominous hivemountain.

This is it… Wishy's heart was racing, her ears perked, her senses heightened… The clouds were coming from here, and there -HAS- to be answers… "Do you see that, Solar…? the clouds are coming from there…! We can be heroes! I could be a guardian… Dancer! Yeah!" With gusto, she starts to gallop for the mountain, filled with a welling zeal!

There are a number of ways a pair of ponies might climb the ancient hive. Its strange surface, like dried mud, offers more than enough purchase to climb the exterior although it gets perilously sheer in places, not to mention the numerous patches of ice that have formed on the previously snow-free mountain. Nearby is a cavern which Solar-Wind would recognize from his previous foray as one of the entrances to the maze of tunnels and chambers that make up the greater hive.

Solar-Wind blazes after her in flight just following after her, "Wishy-Wait! If we're going in there, its Together, like in Teathered by rope, thats a heck of a climb for anypony, Inside, its like a maze, so easy to get lost in" he huffs as he chases her down, "Slow down a minute!" he tries to issue commands as if he were in his firefighting team. "This place is Very dangerous, there's places here that that could well lead to bad places" he lands before her trying to halt her with spread wings.

Wishy-Washy is certainly not a climber as she slows down, looking up to the pegasus. "Yes… I realize that. sorry, let my excitement get the best of me! You want to climb? I'm not the best at climbing, but maybe the networked caves would go up to the top?"

Solar-Wind says "I see two ways, to get there, one being the entrance off to the side, I've been here before some time ago" he gulps visably, "Or, I can probably fly you up about half way by using my rescue harness" he offers. "Fire ponies like myself use rescue harness's to lift ponies out of harms way, and also use them to deliver water to the fire scene, twould easily hold you. I, I'd only go up half way, as I don't want to risk the winds as I go further up" he states with a solid voice. "The lower enterance, I, I'm just a little nervous of thats all" he admits. This is a rather big stallion, (Big-Mac sized flyer) and he's actually creeped out by this place a bit so there has to be something valid to his ideas. "But I, er, maybe we should go in at the bottom, that way, I can get a report back to my wife and the others at Daybreak Village reagarding whats going on here" he states now sounding concerned at the prospect of entering the cavves. (big pegasus is actually claustrophobic)"

Wishy-Washy looks up and rolls her eyes. "Very well. you can get me strapped up and we'll enter up higher. I'm not turning back though, because I'm not sure I could find this place again." her resolve seems to be there, even if it's born out of granduer and airheadedness.

The winds are perilous going up the side of the mountain but not terrible so until the higher elevations. As once ascends the outside of the old hive a bright blue glow can be seen flashing at the pinnacle.

What isn't seen is a much smaller blue glow around Wishy's head. The will'o'wisp has opted to not accompany the Saddle Arabian on this leg of the trip. It flits between the trees at the base of the hive nervously, unwilling to get close to such a terrifying place.

Solar-Wind has strapped her in for a ride she hangs sturdily below the pegasas by a few feet clear of his hooves, but He lifts her up with little strain besides that of handling the buffeting winds. He grunts occasionally as the wind attacks him with unnatural ferocity, he ducks in and aims his landing place for mid-high cavern opening. He cruises into that gap steady and strong, keeping her hooves from the ground still as he inspects the opening that he has chosen to be sure it can support their combined weight.

"aw… oh well. I do not blame the will-o-wisp for being at a little afraid, but… do you see that brighter blue glow up there…? I believe that's where we'll find the windigos and if we're lucky, maybe even Snowfield." The sensation of flight like this is one Wishy would have liked to enjoy more, but given how shakey the ride gets the higher they get… perhapps not. she sets her hooves down when Solar Wind gets close enough to the designated spot, lighting up her horn immediatley to peer into the cavern he has chosen.

It is a short walk through this tunnel until it opens up into a larger chamber. Whatever purpose this room served to the changelings who once called it home has been lost to time, for now the multi-tiered expanse is utterly barren. More tunnels branch in all directions, some of which with visible inclines which could provide a good starting point for making one's way to the peak.

Solar-Wind lands beside her unfastening almost all the harness lines save for one, that of a saftey rope to link the two ponies together incase any one falls, the other one might be able to give aid. Well falling won't be a problem for the big pegasus, but well, no pony gets lost today.

Wishy-Washy gets to that central room, looking around at all the various tunnels. "Lots of ways to go. Do you have anything you could use as a marker for this one before I head on up?

Solar-Wind paces back and forth at the end of that rope. looking into the glooom of the insides, "I, I can't go in, I, this place it scares me" he actually admits out loud, "tight places, but, But I'll be right here when you get back, right here to fly you home" he nods as he jerkingly looks around. He sets down that rope and coils it about for Wishy to carry. "Just mark it with this" he pulls his pack down and pulls out some string, "Tie a little bit to the side here, or" he pulls out some stakes for putting down a tent, "take these and mark the way, got about ten of em, so go easy on em. I'll be keeping a light on in here ready for your return" he offers as he looks outside, "I'm Sorry Wishy-Washy, I, this place is too tight for me" he mentions as he gazes around slightly dazed.

Wishy-Washy nods in an understanding fashion, taking the tent stakes and rope. "Thank you for all your help, Solar Flare. Try to keep safe… and if I'm not back in a few hours, assume the worst. get back to town, and warn everypony. especially the Gypsy at the outskirts. she'll likely know what to do." With that, the cyan mare turns about and ventures on in, her hips still swaying that seductive little sway that they do even when she's tense and serious!

There are a number of tunnels which seem to lead in a general upward direction of which Wishy-Washy may choose from. Of the two closest tunnels one seems to be fairly nondescript while the other has a thing mist billowing out which flows down into the lower tier of the large chamber she and Solar-Wind have set up their base camp in.

Wishy-Washy starts working on up the misty one, dimming the light form her horn a bit as she cautiously ventures… she tries keeping an eye out for any traps or any sort of immediate dangers as she ventures on upwards…

GAME: Wishy-Washy made an unskilled roll with an outcome of Abysmal.

Wishy-Washy soon notes that the mist is actually pretty and she might have to try that on her next dance routine!

A think mist rolls down this tunnel, high as a pony's knees and so heavy as to render the ground completely obscure. Progress will be slow in this direction if one wishes to avoid tripping, which hopefully Wishy does.

Wishy-Washy certainly does not want to trip, and even with her percise and graceful gait, she has to slow it down a bit… but that's okay regardless… she doesn't want to end up tipping off the windigo or any sort of horrible abomination… she does try and at least take in the scent of the air to see if that helps clue her in onw hat the mist could be.

The air becomes uncomfortably humid as the Saddle Arabian ascends the tunnel— a surprising feat considering how cold the depths of the forest are. Or, well, it was cold. It's actually getting… almost balmy in the tunnel now.

Wishy-Washy is surprised to actually be… sweating now…! perhapps this route isn't the best idea, but regardless, she gets an idea as she focuses, trying to create a bit of a windy draft around her to spread the mist apart so she can see where her hooves are stepping…!

The wind magic clears the way spectacularly. It would appear there's nothing magical about the fog on the ground, or at least nothing so magical as to prevent other magic from acting upon it. There are some loose rocks in the patch which might have been problematic for footing had they continued to be obscured, but no longer!

Eventually a new chamber is reached and the source of the heavy mist discovered. The sound of dripping water echoes through the chamber which is filled with pools of liquid water, a rare find in Wintersong, and a great number of strange mushrooms. The steamy atmosphere of the room is generating the fog in the tunnels as the warm, humid air runs into a wall of frigidness and condenses.

Wishy-Washy quickly plucks a few specimins of the various fungal formations telekinetically and carefully places it in a spare pouch she had brought to transport the Windigo's kiss. She notes that Manyara or possibly Sodium Fizz will be able to tell her of what this stuff is… she doesn't walk further into the room, but does see if there's any sign of the source of heat in this room or if it leads anywhere else.

There doesn't appear to be anything special in this room aside from the mushrooms and the pools of water that they encircle. There are two exits, three including the tunnel she entered from; one of the tunnels out continues upwards while the second slopes down and around a corner. Stalactites on the ceiling, a strange feature in the old hive, are the sources of the dripping sounds as water condenses on irregularities in the ceiling and drips down from their tips.

Wishy-Washy nods and proceeds onward to the upward slope, taking care not to accidently dunk her hoof in a puddle. getitng wet might be a very bad idea given the challenges ahead.

Since the mist is bound by the laws of gravity the uphill tunnel is thankfully mist-free, allowing unhindered passage to the next chamber. The rising hot air even makes the temperature almost tolerable! This room appears to be an old storerrom. How can one tell that it was an storeroom? Why, because there are still things stored in it! Well, the remains to stored things, anyway. Tools at least a century old whose organic bits have long since rotted away, leaving only metal shovel and pick heads. Sticky piles of what may have once upon a time been nectar but which was not sufficiently well preserved (perhaps in part due to that warm air from before) and is now an ominously dark sticky mess which has oozed over most of the floor.

Wishy-Washy stops at the goopy stuff… how unsanitary! being that this is a storage room, there's probably not another way out, so unless she spots a way to go further up, she's not touching anything here, that's for certain!

The changelings were apparently not big fans of dead ends. Ease of travel and hitting all of one's waypoints were high on the architect's list because there is, in fact, another exit from this room! It's on the righthand wall, right next to a half-decayed barrel of old nectar. Thankfully the goo hasn't invaded the tunnel due to its uphill slope, but getting to it without getting one's hooves stuck will require either some clever telekinesis or some fancy acrobatics and lucky to hop across the ungunked detritus in the middle of the room.

"… I will simply have to buy solar wind another one when I get back to horseshoe Harbor." Wishy then takes the blanket back that she had been carrying on her as an extra layer since she met with the will-o-wisp and lays it down over the nectar, casually trotting over and using a couple of simple jumps to get over into the next ramp…!

That's one way to get across! The blanket makes a perfect barrier against the sticky tar on the floor, although there is exactly zero chance of being able to recover it once Wishy walks across it and presses it down into the rotted nectar. That thing is glued forever.

The next tunnel is nondescript, but long. So long, in fact, that it gets cold again traversing the tunnel… although without the distraction of the blamy atmosphere Wishy may notice that her saddlebag has gotten awfully warm all on its own.

Wishy-Washy blinks a bit and smiles. "huh… the mushrooms were making it warm. handy stuff!" She keeps trotting on up, a bit more spring in her step then when she was wandering the woods if only because she has a better way of keeping warm.

The tunnel eventually lets out in a room with a view! There's an opening in the cavern wall here which looks out over the forest. It must be in the eastern side of the hive because the White Saddle Mountains are visible in the far distance. There are only a few things distracting from the splendor: the roiling cloud ceiling only a few meters overhead, the roar of the heavy winds blowing past the window, and the insectoid husk of an ancient changeling collapses near the opening.

Wishy-Washy ulps a bit at the dead changeling… while unnerving, it's very much indecative of the abandoned nature of this place. Regardless, going outside is probably a bad idea, so looking for a way up that's still inside would be a good idea… also a good idea, even if it is slightly gruesome is to see if the changeling has anything to LOOT!

The changeling is, sadly, loot-free. All that remains of it is its chitinous shell, the fleshy bits and anything it may have been carrying have long since fallen victim to the ravages of time.

There are two tunnels leading out of the overlook chamber. One is opposite the opening in the wall, sloping down and heading straight for the mountain's core. The other is on the far wall and also slops up and around, apparently following the curve of the mountainside as it approaches the pinnacle… although it is dusted white with snow, which may be a bad sign for ponies hoping to stay out of the elements.

Wishy-Washy pulls her hood on her cloak up over her head and trudges up the snowy path, shivering a bit as she marches on up the path.

Great sections of the mountainside have sloughed off as avalanches, exposing the tunnel to the open air… for a given value of open, considering this elevation is right in the middle of the cloud ceiling. The wind howls terrifyingly loud this close to the mountain's peak. The occasional flash of blue light illuminates the clouds but doesn't do anything to make it any easier to see the hoof at the end of one's leg. A near-blind hike up the exposed tunnel will be required to advance further, blisteringly cold wind chilling ponies to the bone.

GAME: Wishy-Washy made a skilled roll with an outcome of Okay.

Wishy-Washy tries her darnedest to beat back the winds with her wind manipulating magic, trudging through as her body shivers heavily, she squints her eyes, absolutley hating this chill… hate, no. she has to cast that out of her heart… she has to focus on the warmth of the mushrooms in her pack and think about all the ponies she has come to love in horseshoe harbor.

The wind magic manages to fight against the storm and keep the area immediately around Wishy down to a stiff, steady breeze instead of a storm powerful enough to knock a pony off their feet. It does little to clear the way, unfortunately, nor to clear any of the ice that has collected on the path. Hopefully Wishy can maintain her footing here… it would be terrible if she slipped off the mountainside from this high up.

GAME: Wishy-Washy made a skilled roll with an outcome of Okay.

Wishy-Washy thankfully doesn't slip by taking it niiice and easy, winding up and up the mountain… she's nearly past the cloud wall now…!

The sky brightens considerably as the top of the cloud layer approaches and the winds die down considerably. It's almost nice up here! Aside from, y'know, the frigidly cold air. That's not going anywhere.

Wishy-Washy keeps trudging along, her breaths a bit short and her legs shiver a bit with each step, but she can at least rest her hooves… just a bit further and she'll be able to put an end to the cold and bring happiness and sunshine back to the harbor…!

The view of the area up here isn't nearly as nice as it was from the observation room down below. Clouds as far as the eye can see in all directions, spiraling out from the mountain peak. The highest level of the hive has several more exposed tunnels and passages leading back into its depths, although whether these connect with the lower tunnels to provide a less stormy means of reaching the pinnacle is a mystery. From one such tunnel, the highest one on the mountain, great plumes of dark gray clouds pour forth with a chill of deepest winter. This cavern is the source of the blue light that could be seen during the ascent. The glow refacts through the clouds in a manner reminiscent of lightning flashes.

Wishy-Washy looks at the billowing black clouds and steels herself, putting her wind wall up agian as she draws a deep breath and trudges on into the dark clouds, knowing that this is really it… she's got her rope leading back to Solar wind that's still has surprisingly lots of slack if something bad happens… the only source of solace she has as she bravely stomps fourth!

The dark clouds are about neck deep on a full grown pony so at least Wishy will be able to see what's going on… sort of. As she enters the cavern the temperature drops to well below freezing and an overwhelming presense will begin to fog her mind. It seems to latch onto her negative emotions and attempt to draw them out of her psyche, kicking and screaming. Any loneliness or hatred she's felt recently will come to the forefront of her mind, followed by those deeper grudges she's felt going back months and years.

GAME: Wishy-Washy made a skilled roll with an outcome of Good.

Wishy-Washy has to latch onto thoughts of her friends… of Ruby Blossom, Rising Chaos, Hemlock, Whirligig, Stagecoach, Kludge. She thinks about Hoarfrost who she wants to see smile… all the ponies she wants to see smile from her art and everything she puts into it… although it's shivery and nopony can see it, she starts to dance a little through the clouds, abeit shivery to keep her mind on those positive emotions.

There's a deep snorting sound from the depths of the cave as Wishy begins her dance and two points of cyan light blink lazily into existance and shine amongst the mist. They move from left to right slowly as if searching the area then rise up at the same time as a thick wave of fresh cloud cover rolls out of the cave.

Cold. hate the cold. this is absolutley miserable. Don't worry about other ponies. Worry about yourself. You should just leave horseshoe harbor. this won't make you more money. Those are the kinds of thoughts that boom through the mare's head that she has to try and shrug off, and she does by keeping in mind the thoughts of ruby and all her foals. Thinking about ponies like Midnight Sun and Sunshine Stormcloud and such that want this resolve push her forward to intensify her windy magic, trying to push the cold air off a bit. "I-I'm not afraid of you…! I… I've come because back down there there's many ponies who want to enjoy the warmth of the summer and live in harmony…!

The cyan points of light move closer to Wishy-Washy as she speaks. Close enough to enter the ring of illumination provided by her horn, exposing its features. The elongated features of its face might be vaguely reminiscent of those of Saddle Arabian nobility, although drawn out to an extraordinary degree that renders them inequine. They are not quite as angular as one might expect from storybooks, giving it a certain degree of… femininity? Its flesh, if one could call it that, is translucent and almost crystalline in appearance.

The windigo snorts at the dancer's declaration. It is unimpressed, but does not speak or raise a hoof in threat. Its sheer presense ought to be enough to chase her away.

Wishy-Washy takes a defiant step forward, doing her best to keep a stern look, each short exhale she does puffing a cloud into the air. "I told you. I am not afraid. Wh… where is Snowfield?" She unconciously frowns a bit, her body starting to feel a bit numb from the terrible cold that's blowing through the room.

The windigo continues to remain unimpressed… at least until Wishy mentions the name 'Snowfield'. The creature shudders at the name and snorts out another jet of clouds which swirl around and out of the cavern. Its chest, outside of the light of Wishy's magic, becomes visibly momentarily as something green glimmers and illuminates it from within. It is only for a moment, however.

Wishy-Washy has struck a weak point as she doesn't let her stare falter, trying to ignore the outright pain her body is in for now from the numbing feeling. "Snowfield's friends sent me to save her, Windigo. Ponies that love her and miss her. I will not be the last who comes, and when they do come here, they'll have a unity and warmth to them that your tricks alone cannot prey upon… but something tells me there is more to this then I thought, yes? She had many texts about your kin in her house… like the foal's tale of the Windigo's Kiss… that one interests me in particular."

There's another glimmer of green in the windigo's chest at the mention of friends. Is green a natural color for windigos to turn? It stomps its forehooves angrily on the ground and digs at the ground intimidatingly. The mention of the Windigo's Kiss does not seem to draw a reaction from the creature above and beyond what it is already doing. Either it doesn't care or it would need to hear more for it to do something interesting. Is that a risk Wishy thinks is worth it?

Wishy-Washy feels so incredibly numb already… she has to push it. "Th-there once was a windigo mare who dared to let love into her icy heart for a stallion. S-she didn't care the conciquences of her love; it was unconditional, and she… she ended up…" Wishy quickly shakes her head, trying to wake herself up a bit. "She ended up having her love… sacrificing herself for that love. her icy heart melted and all that remained was a blue bloom!"

Wishy's eyes begin to lid partially, the cold really starting to get to her body… even with the warming fungi in her saddlebag warming her a little, this was getting difficult.

That gets a reaction out of the windigo. The mention of love and sacrifice causes it to rear up angrily, snorting more billowing clouds and sending out a wave of icy energy. Wishy may find her hooves freezing to the ground below her if she doesn't keep her step light. It takes an intimidating step forward, allowing more of its body into the light assuming Wishy doesn't take a step back. Its torso is much darker than its head is, not allowing light to shine through it the way its head did. What were once flashes of green are now an active glow eminating from where its heart ought to be as well and the cavern is filled with an overwhelming presense… as if one is being watched and judged by some force beyond mortal ken.

GAME: Wishy-Washy made an unskilled roll with an outcome of Okay.

Wishy-Washy starts to step and walk around a bit awkwardly, doing a sort of jog in place to try and keep some sort of warmth and feeling in her body. She takes a moment to pick her own brain a bit… "We… All have somepony we love, even if we cannot act upon it… I know Snowfield loved a Pony named blackbird, and I bet there's somepony out there for you too. Search your heart… Speak to me, I want to help you.

Maybe… maybe that wasn't such a good idea. At the mention of love the light in its heart fills the entire windigo's body momentarily, turning it a sickly shade of chartreuse which lights up the entire cave, aside from a shadow in its chest just behind the heart-glow. Its mouth opens and lets loose a horrifying roar of anger, loneliness, sorrow and pain. As its body reverts to icy blue it charges forward in a blind rage, attempting to tackle Wishy bodily and send her tumbling out of its cavern. It seems the creature has given up on trying to freeze the dancer's soul and will now content itself with freezing her corpse.

GAME: Wishy-Washy made a talent roll with an outcome of Great.
GAME: Snowfield made a skilled roll with an outcome of Okay.

Wishy-Washy casually rolls to the side, letting out a gentle snort. "My words strike true and you feel threatened!~ you cannot defeat me though. Not through callous tricks or brute force. Now… stand down and take my help, or plague this land no more…!:

The windigo huffs and snorts at Wishy angrily, ice extending from its front hooves and racing across the ground at an amazing speed. Should any of it touch the dancing pony's hooves it will lock her down so that she can't dodge out of the way again. The time for threats of helping seems to have passed— the monster is out for blood now!

GAME: Wishy-Washy made a talent roll with an outcome of Good.
GAME: Snowfield made a skilled roll with an outcome of Good.

Wishy-Washy jumps out of the way but indeed catches a bit of frost encasing her hind hoof, causing her to let out a panicked yalp. she quickly, pulls out the warm fungi and attempts to telekinetically toss the shooms towards the beat's mouth in particular.

GAME: Wishy-Washy made a skilled roll with an outcome of Good.
GAME: Snowfield made a skilled roll with an outcome of Bad.

A simple mushroom isn't going to stop an enraged windigo, no matter how naturally warm it may be. The best Wishy can hope for is that it slows the monster down enough for her to get her hoof free— which it just might! The telekinetically guided mushroom goes right into the windigo's gullet, causing it to sputter and cough momentarily as it tries to expel the foreign object from itself.

GAME: Wishy-Washy made an unskilled roll with an outcome of Bad.

Wishy-Washy grunts as she starts to tug her hoof desperatley, trying her darnedest to get her hind hoof loose of the ice. she tug tug tugs before finally she manages to crack the ice and stunble to the side a bit.

The mushroom, slightly crushed, is finally ejected from the windigo's mouth. It takes a moment to collect itself before rounding on Wishy again, eyes blazing with magical fire. Dare she try to strike it again?

Wishy-Washy draws her Jambiya defensively and steps back, looking around the room for brief moments to see what she can gather, although she doesn't let her eyes wander from the Windigo for long.

The windigo snorts indignantly at Wishy-Washy. The mare is putting up a heck of a fight and neither is getting anywhere. As time goes on its mindless rage at the dancer is becoming tempered. Something seems to click in its head as it looks towards the mouth of the cavern.

Wishy-Washy 's eyes widen as she thinks she gets an idea of what it's about to do, scampering for the door; she does NOT wanna be trapped in this room with this thing.

When Wishy makes a break for the door the windigo does as well. Its longer legs and inherant floatiness give it a significant speed advantage over the unicorn and it easily closes the distance between them. It doesn't opt to seal the entrance, however… instead it gallops right outside!

Wishy-Washy blinks a bit… it's intimidated! She gives chase for a bit, even if it is a fruitless effort. she certainly can't teleport to stop it, but the show of chasing it will at least drive it away long enough to properly search the room.

Should Wishy watch the windigo away before returning to the room she'll notice that it's racing across the clouds directly south…

The cavern seems to be barren. Without the windigo around to summon more clouds the fog inside of it is beginning to clear away, revealing the floor almost completely coated with ice. The place where the windigo had been apparently napping when it was intruded upon is the iciest, likely on account of terrifying frost monster exposure, and will require a more thorough investigation to see through the rime.

GAME: Wishy-Washy made an unskilled roll with an outcome of Bad.

Wishy-Washy is outright tired and feeling woosey, and although she searches around, she starts to rapidly get fed up, but still keeps looking through, knowing there has to be a reason besides the vantage point that the creature made this it's nest.

GAME: Wishy-Washy made an unskilled roll with an outcome of Abysmal.

If there's any clues as to why the windigo holed up at the peak of the old hive, they're either not here or so thoroughly coated in ice as to require a week long defrosting to discover.

Wishy-Washy starts to hobble her way down the mountain back to the room with mushrooms; perhapps she could at least START the thawing process and camp out? she did bring camping supplies, at least…

Wishy-Washy manages to make it down to the mushroom room before she just outright FACEPLANTS from exhaustion, her eyes shutting as she drifts off… at least the warmth of the room will maybe keep the windigo from coming back and killing her…