It S A Trap
IC date: Autumn 2
OOC date: September 21
Location: Wintersong Forest
PCs: Makuru, Hoarfrost, Sadaka, Freeze-Frame
NPCs: Snakebite
GM: Applejack

It's a chilly afternoon in Wintersong right now, the clear skies above doing nothing to ward off the cold of the magical woods now that the summer sun isn't beating down. Luckily Makuru has so much energy and cheerfulness that he is incapable of feeling cold-induced discomfort! He's out in the woods today hunting for potion ingredients, although he hasn't informed his friends why exactly he needs them beyond 'for alchemy homework'. "I found the pausownia!" he says, pointing up at a creeping vine that has started growing sepia-toned flowers high up in a tree. "Can one of you get it for me?" he calls to his friends. "I don't wanna try climbing that."

Freeze-Frame nods a bit, wearing a nice and thick scarf as well as her chubbiness to keep herself warm. she flits on up to the plant Makuru pointed out and very carefully picks it out before bringing back down… she doesn't look like she's having fun, that's for certain.

Not feeling cold induced discomfort? Somepony isn't doing her job! The Ice witch to be Hoarfrost is out in the woods acting as much as a guide to this miss adventure as she can. After all she is 'Trained by Snowfield in the ways of the forest' or at least she boasts as much. Small frame devoid of anything to keep her warm yet she almsot seems to prance about in the cool air. "Are you sure thats not poisonous?" she questions Makauru.

Sadaka is pretty okay with the cold. She's only brought along a scarf - anything else would get in the way of wings, wouldn't it! Speaking of wings - oh, nope, plant already been gotten. Just as well, she still has the easiest time with running takeoffs and that's not the easiest thing to do in a snow forest. "Alright, so that's that one… what else're we after?"

"Uh, let's see," Makuru says as he goes over his lesson in his head. "If we can find some everroot, that'll be great." He gestures at the ground underhoof. "It's a really low weed, about yea high, chokes out all the other forest floor plants around it, and it refuses to get pulled out of the ground."

Freeze-Frame nods a bit. "Alright. I'm just in it for the cookies and hot cocoa at your place afterwards, Maku! that, and probably a shower after digging around in the dirt for plants…!"

"Ummmm Everroot." Hoarfrost trots in a tight circle as if chasing her tail for a moment. "Over here!" pointing a hoof in a seemingly random direction "I think there are some over there." the ice witch chirps and fallows the path already layed out in her head.

Sadaka blinks and pauses mid-step, half bent over to look for the mentioned weeds. "You can't pull it out of the ground? …How're we supposed to get it then?"

"Momma made chocolate cookies with peanut butter chips," Makuru says when Freeze-Frame states her required bribe. "I'll make the cocoa for us when we get back home, okay?" When Hoarfrost points in a seemingly random direction the little zebra colt laughs. "Hey, wait up! Some of us don't know the forest as well as you do!" he laughs as he follows after her. Over his shoulder he calls back to Sadaka, "By digging up the whole root system! I'll spend the rest of the afternoon trying to cut it up at home."

"Push it out of the ground still, if it wont pull!" Hoarfrost tries her best to sound like a mystic filly with mysterious ways, but Makuru gets to it first and she rolls her eyes. "Or ya I guess you could just go and dig up the whole thing. Thing is though she has never been in this part of the forest before, it just seemed like a good direction to go. Plants at least where in that direction right? "Um I think its around here somewhere … they should call it Never-root because you never find it …"

Freeze-Frame follows right along, licking her lips… "Maku, you -KNOW- Choco-Peanut butter is like… my favorite!" she leaps into the air to accent the words she's saying, tryin gto flap along a bit to lessen her need to try and deal with the rough terrain.

Somewhere in the forest, near where a small group of foals are more or less wandering around in circles, a bell is ringing. It's a pleasant jingle-jangle, a small sound coming from a small object, but it's there in the air. Calling out to forest critters with its out-of-place cheerful sound.

Sadaka ponders this for a second, then shrugs. "If you say so." Maybe they should've brought shovels. She turns to trot after Hoarfrost, but pauses when she picks up a faint sound. Her ears perk, and twitch. "…Anypony else hear that?"

"Neverroot's already a thing," Makuru explains helpfully. "It has really a shallow root system and gets blown away by the wind real easily, so when you see it it looks like it never took root." He grins at Freezie and says, "I know! That's why I asked her to make 'em before we went out today, I knew I'd owe you one." He slows down when Sadaka draws attention to… something. "Hear what? I didn't hear anything."

Freeze-Frame blinks at the jingling and pull sout her camera. "ooh…! yeah, Sadaka! it… it sounds really pretty!" she sways back and fourth in the air and starts to try and zone in where it's coming from and fly that way.

Frost pauses, ears flicking back and forth trying to track the sound she just barely caught. "A bell? Did a cow get lost in the forest? Don't they know the Wintersong is dangerous?" Didn't seem to stop this group. "Freeze! Wait up!" the ice witch chases after her friend as she takes off to the sound. "We don't know what it is, could be a monster we should sneak up on it!"

"Why would a monster make a bell sound?" Sadaka asks, with genuine curiosity. She wouldn't be surprised if it /was/ a monster, she just wants to know /why/.

How many evil monsters have bells?

Following the sound of the gentle chime, which is fairly erratic in its noise, leads the small group to a stunty dead tree, stripped of leaves and covered in a sort of luminescent fungus. Next to this tree is a big ol' bush, frosted like everything else in this cold and unforgiving forest.

Dangling from this bush, suspended by one if its adorable back legs, is a bunny. A very grumpy-looking bunny, that looks like it's spent the better part of forever trying to reach up and get loose from the snare that's apparently caught it. It doesn't help that its forearms are tied around its body too. The bell? That's tied to the snare around the bunny's foot, jingling away every time said bunny tries to reach up to bite at the rope, or do /something/. Boing, boing, jingle, jingle~

Makuru chases after Freeze Frame and Hoarfrost further into the woods. "Hey! Momma said that you shouldn't chase after… " he slows down to consider the statement. "Actually, I don't think she's said anything about this. Wait for me!" Gallop gallop~

Makuru chases after Freeze Frame and Hoarfrost further into the woods. "Hey! Momma said that you shouldn't chase after… " he slows down to consider the statement. "Actually, I don't think she's said anything about this. Wait for me!" Gallop gallop~

When the group comes across the captured bunny he comes to a sudden stop fearfully. "Wait! Wait wait wait! She DID say stuff about bunnies! Don't touch the bunny!"

Freeze-Frame floats up and blinks at the bunny, but not too close… she then quickly takes a photo of the poor defenseless thing. "you sure I shouldn't let it go? I like… got a pretty good picture of it in distress…!"

"Well from my point of view it seems to lure fillies into a false sense of security." Hoarfrost is only proven wrong as her fear only turns out to be a bunny rabbit. "Huh." she says walking about it. "Maybe a - no who makes snares?" confused by the little trap. Not a lot of ponies trapping for bunnies. "Don't have to touch It I could magic it free?" the witchling offers helpfully.
Sadaka blinks. "Don't touch it!" she agrees with Makuru. "It could be one of those snowbunny ice monster things!" Oh, she remembers the snowbunnies. Yes she does.

"Snow bunnies will mess you up!" Makuru agrees. "They've got fur like knives!"

Freeze-Frame flaps away from the snow bunny. "Yeah, Daddy doesn't even trap for bunnies, I don't think…! still… bell traps! that'd be super smart for him to do! I'mma have to ask if he does or not!"

For a bunny, this doesn't seem like a very dangerous one. As the group of foals find it, the little guy blinks at them and struggles anew, twisting about, jingling the bell, and when that's all futile, heaving a sigh and giving this most adorably pleading look!

For that matter the Harbor foals might actually recognize this bunny as one that has been seen scampering about town every now and then. Particularly associated with a certain griffon or brown-hatted pony.

It's also only suspended maybe a foot from the ground.

"Knife bunnies? An' I thought my world was screwy." Frost slinks away with this new news. Images of her trying to hug it and she would suddenly be black with and red all over. "You would think Knife bunnies would be day on in forest training." adding with a little grumble. Clearly there is holes in her witchly training! "So we leave it?" asking just to make sure.

Makuru doesn't recognize it because he is selectively observant while around town. "Maybe one of you two could cut it down," he says to Freeze Frame and Sadaka. "That way it can fall to the ground and we don't have to be anywhere near it."

The bunny's eyes widen, poor thing going into a brief panic when talk of leaving it happens! Bounce bounce jingle jingle augh!

Sadaka frowns. "I dunno… it doesn't /look/ all crystally." She peers at the bunny, then edges towards it. "I mean, it won't hurt to let it down, right? Just don't touch it just in case? …You're not gonna try and get all cuddly, are you, Mr. Bunny?"

Freeze-Frame flits on up to the bunny and frowns a swell. "I'd totes let you free, but I don't have anything to cut you down, I mean… I could TRY to eat through the rope…" Freezy flies higher and starts to chew at the ropes with her dull, flat teeth.

"I've got a knife in my saddlebag," Makuru says as he flips the flap open and reaches into it with his face. This is the safest way to retrieve knives, of course. He withdraws it with the hilt gripped in his teeth. "Cihm dirn hurr,, Fershy," he says.

It's a pretty sturdy bit of rope! Could take some gnawing to get through… But it is, still, just a rope. Yep.

The bunny is giving Sadaka the biggest little doe-eyed look he can possibly give. There may even be sniffling involved. Sniff. Sniff! Don't leave meeeeeee!

Hoarfrost keeps her distance. There is talk of murder bunnies. The filly will keep a safe forever away from the that mess.

Freeze-Frame flies on down and performs something that to the average onlooker would look like a kiss, but is really just hwo ponies pass tools from one another. she then flies back up and starts to cut the rope! (now available on iHerd!)

Sadaka is, perhaps luckily, distracted by wibbly bunny, and does not notice the exchange of tool. "Okay, okay, we'll get you down, Mr. Bunny. Just don't be all icy and sharp at us when we do."

Frost makes a loud 'Ooooo' as the two ponies 'kiss' as it where. Giggling at the strange exchange of tools. Why don't those silly ponies just used their mag-oh right. "I'm ready incase there is any uncalled for bunny cuddling! I will freeze it in it's tracks." giving a pair of squinting eyes to the pitiful creature.

"I don't know if that'd work on a Snowbunny," Sadaka asides thoughtfully. "They're made of ice already."

Cut, cut, cut the rope! Cut, cut, cut the rope! Huzzah! A few moments of steady sawing at the sturdy bit of ropework has the tether sliced and the bunny free! Free to drop to the soft, cushiony ground! Well, free to land on his head anyway. it was a short drop though, so no harm done! He hops a couple times, then blinks up at Freeze-Frame, giving her the same doe-eyed look, then glancing at the other rope that's keeping his arm's bound up! Hurray for helpful ponies!

Now that the jingling bell sound is no longer a constant reminder of BUNNY, other forest sounds can resume. Like that soft, soft hiss of noise that seems to be coming from somewhere behind Hoarfrost.

Freeze-Frame rolls her eyes at the call from Hoarfrost, going down to very carefully start cutting the bunny's front paws free! she hasn't noticed the hiss yet.

Sadaka stretches her wings out, keeping an eye on the bunny. She's /reasonably/ sure it's not a snowbunny, but better safe than sorry. "Hey, maybe he knows where the planty thing is." She pauses and tilts an ear. "…Hey, how'd you get out here, anyway?" She asks, as if suddenly realizing this issue. "Who'd tie up a bunny like that an' just… /leave/ it?"
Makuru is keeping his distance as Hoarfrost is, and now it is his turn to perk his ears. "Do you fillies hear that?" he asks as he glances into the trees.

"I dunno maybe its like I said cute bunnies and pleasing noises make for a pretty handy-Meep!" Noises! Nothing in this forest is going to get her! Spinning about on her hoof she points her horn at the sounds. This is her chance, finally she gets to use what she learned to help stop nasty monsters from mucking things up. "Who's there!" she says voice cracking a bit nervously for a pony claiming to be so brave.

Snap! goes the rope cut by Freezy to free the bunny completely. Whom is more than a little joyful at all this! Oh he bounces around, hippity hop, happy as can be! But one hop causes the ground to shift, then shudder, the sound of a whole mess of ropes suddenly kicking off! Twang!

That's when the net beneath the very ground the helpful pegasus was standing springs to life, shooting up from beneath Freeze-Frame and Sadaka's hooves! Oh, and the bunny, too.

At the same time the hissing noise intensifies, turning into more of a laughing snicker. Hss-hs-hs-hs-hs! Rustle goes a bush! And boing goes a /real/ snowbunny, light glistening off its spike-like fur, as it bounds from one bush to another inches from in front of the snow-witch-in-training.

"Yah!" Net outta nowhere! Sadaka has her wings spread, mid-stretch, which allows a convenient flap downwards pretty easily. Apparently she's much better at takeoffs when startled! She shoots right straight on up into the air, a good couple yards in a few strong flaps. "What the hay…"

Freeze-Frame yalps as she's suddenly hoisted up! this causes the knife come loose from her jaw, but she thankfully clapps her hooves together to catch it before it drops, although she's barely got a grip of it! "WAAAH! whew… I almost dropped the knife…! just have to really carefully pull it back…!" with her hooves threaded through a square in the net each, she starts to very carefully pull the knife back up.

"Wagh!" Makuru exclaims. He runs under the benetted Freeze Frame and begins jumping to reach her. "Hold on! I'll get you out!" He performs a mighty *POING* into the air and clamps down on one of the bottom ropes with his teeth.

Bunny! The Ice witch freezes not sure if it is going to attack or go after her friends. Shoot why did the monster have to be cute looking? The screams cause her to turn away for a dangerous moment to see what the screams are all about. Freeze and Sadaka are captured, they are under attack! "Shoot I'm coming guys!" she tries to make a run to the net horn lighting up trying to build a flat plane of ice under Makuru that can lift him up towards the others, giving him at least the higher ground.

One foal netted, one foal now hovering! Another foal hanging off the net! And the last one running to help. It's a pretty sturdy net, this trap, thicker than the bonds that held the bunny firm and with hardly any space between threads. Enough for a knife to drop, sure, but not so much a bunny. Poor guy, caught in the net with Freeze!

The ground beneath Makuru gives another shudder as ice forms beneath the alchemist foal. In fact, where the net had settled has fallen away to reveal a deep hole beneath the suspended net, that ice forming a sort of plank overtop of it! Nets AND pits? Goodness!

Right about then is when something zips past Sadaka's ears. The only warning she gets that something else is about to try and sting her flank.

Freeze-Frame carefully tries to hoof off the knife to Makuru, squirming around and kicking in the net… her chubby belly is probably smushed against the poor bunny. "Hoarfrost, Sadaka, like… Run! When Maku cuts me free, I'm gonna try and carry him out of here!"

Yipe! Sadaka flattens her ears and flits to the side, hooves flailing as though galloping will make her fly faster. (Protip: no. It won't.) "What's going on?!"

Makuru reaches for the knife with one of his free hooves, still holding onto the net with his teeth. Unfortunately, flailing around isn't a particularly good way to get a grip on an item and all he succeeds in doing is slapping it around— maybe even knocking it out of Freezie's hooves entirely! The ice floor that appears beneath him gives him footing but not very good footing. His hooves scrabble for purchase ineffectually.

"Oh no! I'm not loosing any more friends or family or anypony I'm gunna fight'em all!" The little ice witch snorts a cloud of powdery snow, pawing at the ground. Eyes glancing about wild like to find what ever the hay is doing all this! "We can't trust any ground we step on anyway, stay on the ice they can't booby trap that." a bit of occupational pride welling up in her. Though being ice it is kinda booby trapped by its very nature. "I'll build a wall!" all that training with Hawthron is going to pay off. Snowfort time!

Fwip! Fwip! Fwip! P-ting! Several more little dart-shaped objects flip through the air at the poor group of foals! Two of them likely lodging in that newly formed ice wall. Just in time? But… That leaves those foals' backs facing that pit, doesn't it? With naught but a slippery sheet of ice to keep them from tumbling in.

The next thing Sadaka has to worry about isn't a dart. It's a bola. A whistling sound accompanies the trio of weights spinning at the airborne foal, aimed to put those wings in a tangle!

Poor bunny has to watch it all with his face smooshed into the net. He squeaks pitifully…. Poor bunny.

THIS IS NOT FUN BUT IT IS VERY GOOD PRACTICE. Sadaka banks with one wing, rolling to the side and flapping to shoot up a few feet higher. She should probably be fleeing by now, but… her friends are stuck down there! "Look out for the hole!" She calls down to Hoarfrost, and tries to dive for the net and the knife before said means of escape can be knocked into oblivion.

Freeze-Frame indeed drops the knife. it clangs once against the ice and then down into the pitfall it goes. she does realize she's got the bunny crushed and tries to shift aorund to get the hare on top of her instead. then of course there's the the obvious thing she can do; she takes in a deeep breath before letting out a blood-curtling movie shriek she's been practicing, trying to see if that draws any sort of attention from anypony who might we wandering the forest. "HAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAALP! SOMEPONYYYYYYYYYYYYYYY!!!"

The wall wasn't her best plan but hopefully offered some cover. "Hole right." Frost thinks hard for a moment how to fill the hole but its just not coming. Its too big of a space for her to fill. "Oh! Hoof rails." focusing he magic from under her snowy cover she tries to shape the ice into more of a U shape to channel ponies (maybe objects?) into it not out and into the pit.

"Shtrp mrvin errnd!" Makuru shouts at Freeze Frame from between clenched teeth.

That shout does attract some attention! Zoom! A rustle of leaves, branches, a whistle of air, something flits out across the sky as Sadaka dives and other foals scream! Obscuring what little light filters down into the bit of a clearing, a set of spread wings signals the arrival of a new face. A green face, with red slitted eyes and a purple muzzle, topped with a blue mowhawk of a mane. It's a face that takes all of a moment to study how this has all turned out. Oh, those wide-spread wings? Bat wings.

"You kids…" the figure mutters, tucking his wings in to allow a sort of dead-drop, falling like a stone several feet before flinging those wings out again, sending a sharp gust of wind down at the group of foals! Which he casually tosses a pouch of sparkling powder into. "Hoped I wouldn't have to use this stuff. It's dang expensive to get my hooves on! This bunch better be worth it…"

Freeze-Frame is kinda caught off guard by the spectacle of the bat pony and indeed gets a good whiff of the sparkly stuff, letting out a gentle little sneeze from it. "M-maku! ruuun! Don't worry about me no more!"

"Hrr! Whushis?" Makuru shouts at the batpony that suddenly appeared and threw weird powder at them. He sneezes at the dust and feels his eyelids getting heavy. "Err… shrt…" he mumbles. The grip on his jaws loosens and he falls down, crashing through the ice platform beneath him and down to the bottom of the pitfall.

No! Knife! Sadaka flairs out her wings quickly to redirect at the net. She's not diving into a hole, nope. (There could be /water/ down there.) But she's distracted by any rescue attempts by giant bat winged pony. "What the… who're you?" she manages, and then sneezes, because powder. She blinks. She sways a bit. Her wings five a little flutter. Then she topples to the side and drops like a tiny striped stone.

"Makuru!" Frost hidden behind her fort was spared a blast from the poweder for the moment, but leaps from her cover as her friend falls failing to grab his hoof in time. "Darn it!" voice fraying and sounding more frantic, looking up at Freeze trying to figure out a way to free her. Sadaka is falling from the sky, Freeze is looking like her eyelids are closing and Mak just napped off a cliff. "Why?" She demands at the batpony leveling her horn at the attacker like she might fire a shot at him. Staggering a little as the lingering powder starts to enter her system. "I-wont- I wont." blink blink. Horn lighting up she turns it towards Sadaka giving her a bank of snow to crash into before falling down herself.

Freeze-Frame thankfully being fat and having a slow metabolism lets her keep her wits aobut her for just a bit longer, and the last thing she manages to do is take aim with her camera at the batpony and take a picture, giving the big lug a nice shot in his eyes of very bright flashbulb. the polaroid picture slides on out and freeze frame manages to brush the photo out onto the ground before going completley limp in the ned, the weariness overtaking her.

Well three out of four isn't bad. The new bat-winged stallion beats his wings to carry him to the edge of the pit, squinting at the three sleepy foals that have by now either tumbled into the pit, or gotten a good faceful of the sleepy stuff within that net. He watches calmly, eyes focused like a predator on Hoarfrost's horn for the brief few moments it takes the sleepy powder to take effect on the frosty unicorn. So he totally doesn't realize that the foal in the net's still wriggling until the bright flash of a camera momentarily blinds him!

"Grah! Why you…little…" The bat-winged menace flails, rears back, and very nearly tumbles into the pit himself! Perhaps caught by the very ends of his wits, he manages to avoid his own little foaltrap, ears cocked and in rapid motion, listening for the sounds of fleeing hooves or beating wings. But neither of those sounds come for the few moments it takes the figure to regain some semblance of sight.

Spots still dancing before his eyes, the green stallion grunts. "Gonna have to keep an eye on that one. Tricky bugger. Hm. Four. Not bad, not bad." Thus does the villain set about arranging the net that had Freeze to fish out the other foals, making a perfect little bag of little pony to sling over his back.

Then off he goes! A powerful beat of wings sends snow flying in every direction, leaving the scene of so many traps behind. A small polaroid picture of that sinister green face, red eyes, and purple muzzle landing atop a snowdrift.