Just Trying To Help
IC date: Spring 15
OOC date: March 5
Location: Abandoned Syndicolt Ship
PCs: Lily-Heart Mad-Mare
NPCs: N/A
GM: AJ

It's been weeks… Months, even. Months, since anyone ever last heard tale or tail of the ex-Syndicolt leader otherwise known as Mad Mare. She disappeared in a poof of magical teleportation thanks to a little gem charm. Never to be seen again. The great Syndicolt ship, the rusty heap that it's become now that its no longer in use, sits alone and forgotten a good mile or so down the beach from the Harbor. Abandoned by its old goonish owners.

Or so everyone would like to think.

There's a relation. One abandoned ship, plus one forgotten mare, equals a crazy hermit in a rusty ship. A lone filly wandering the halls, holed up in her old Captain's cabin, building little fires out of what used to be a very awesome hat collection. A little filly, in fact… One whom had never been cured of a poison joke incident so long ago, staring forlornly into the flickering flames of a discarded bonnet or two. The winter was not kind, she looks like she's nearly starved, whatever stores of food and water the ship had likely dwindling down to next to nothing.

skreeeeeEEEEEECLUNK.

The sound of the distant door in the side of the ship opening and shrieking with rust reaches the little filly's ears. And— hoofsteps? And muttering! Perhaps the Bone Mistress has finally come?
You say "You're running out of food…" the flickering fire says to the Mad Mare. Or maybe she said it, and she just /thinks/ it came from the fire.

"I know…" the little Mad filly says.

"You're almost out of hats, too…" the fire says again, hissing and popping as it consumes a button, like a fine dessert.

"I /know/…" the little Mad filly says again, her ears splaying from under the fur-lined hood she's wearing. It's going in the fire next, most likely.

"You can't stay in here forever…" the fire claims, creeping over the blazing hat, flickering as though sitting on its rim. One could almost imagine the face it has, staring at the crazy little foal.

"…Watch me." the filly grumps, shugging into her hat. "If I step anywhere civilized, I'm dead anyway."

The fire crackles merrily. "Only because you're weak. You had everything, and you let it go. You ran. Like a coward. That's not like you."

"Shut /up/." the filly growls at the burning hats, "I didn't have a choice! I—" Wait. Little ears perk and twist, interrupted from her self-arguement by the sound of hoofsteps. "Uh-oh! They found me! They FOUND ME!" Scamper! Hide! Ahhh! The Mad Filly dives beneath a dwindling pile of hats, hardly enough left to do more than cover her up to her gleaming little metal legs!"

"…dreadful, just dreadful," the voice is saying. It's soft and feminine and melodic and — familiar! Who was that? "Oh! Goodness, I'm sorry, little mouse. I didn't mean to step on you. Oooh, where was it? Hmmm…" Hoofsteps, getting closer! And finally: a youngish white unicorn mare pokes her head in through the doorway. "Was it here? Or— … a fire!!"

Familiar indeed! The Mad Filly squeaks when the door opens, yet when she recognizes an actual 'friendly' face, she perks her head up. "H..hey!" Another squeak as her voice cracks, a cough, and a clearing of a young throat. "Uh.. I mean, hi! Wh.. What are you doing here?" She hesitantly creeps out of the small pile of hats, shaking off a top hat that had stuck to her tail. "You're not here to… Take me to jail or something… Are you?"

Lily is busy staring at the fire in astonishment for a moment before an even bigger surprise pipes up. She skips back a few paces, and blinks. "…Miss Sunshine?" she asks, clearly utterly confused. "Wh…what are you doing here? And a filly! And— so… so underfed! Are you okay?" Her astonishment melts swiftly into concern as she approaches.

The Mad Filly's ears immediately splay. "Don't /call/ me that…" she grouses, but can't quite put up enough of a fight in her tone to do more than that growl. "I prefer Maddie. Or just..Mad Mare. Even if I don't look it." She holds her ground, adorble little filly eyes still trying hard to glare up at the odd bleeding heart of a pony. "This is my home. Why shouldn't I be here? What are /you/ doing here?" She turns her head away. "Shouldn't you be, I dunno, hugging porcupines and frolicing in fields of flowers and magically mending hearts or something?"

"Oh… right. Miss Maddie. I'm sorry, I didn't mean to." Lily-Heart, to her credit, does not tear up or go tearing off on a sniffle-bender. Instead she just looks gracefully abashed and approaches anyway. "I've misplaced my favorite hat, and I thought I'd perhaps left it here on one of my visits, so I was coming to find it. Would you like a sandwich? I brought one for a snack."

"Yeah well, I hope it wasn't one of the ones I've already burned then…" Maddie grumbles softly. The mention of a sandwich is enough to set her stomach rumbling, the little off-white filly looking more than a little gaunt in that moment. "Um. …Yes. I would."

"Oh, well if you burned it, then it's served a much better purpose than sitting on my head." Lily smiles brightly and sits beside Mad, levitating a cucumber sandwich and a packet of hay chips from her bag, setting them in front of the little foal. "Oh, dear… You do look like you've seen better days. Do you want to talk about it?"

It's all she can do to keep from drooling at the sight of the sandwich, the Mad one staring at it with wide eyes and a soft whimper of noise. Fooooooooood~ No sooner does the delicious-looking thing get close enough than Maddie pounces upon it, devouring the whole mess quickly and without much grace. It's a mess, yes. But now it's a mess that's nourishing a needy body.

Post sandwich, Maddie looks up at her visitor, licking a hoof clean. "Mn..? Um. Talking. I've been talking to myself for a while now, I don't know if I'm very good..company. For talking. To real ponies again." Her thoughts, so scattered! "But… Maybe you can help with that, yes? I seem to recall you had some kind of weird mind-twisty magic."

Lily's heart, and open expression, fills with hope! She can be useful! It's her ONE TRUE CALLING!! "You want me to try again? I can help you! We'll get you fit for company, and get you a doctor and some food and you'll be right as rain! Oh, Maddie, I want to help you so /much/!"

There's /such/ a weary look in the little filly's eyes. "I don't…" she starts to say, then brings a hoof up to her face. "…no, fine. Yes. Fix me. Whatever. I can't keep going on like this. I'm driving myself crazy, and I know it's that bloody gypsy's fault, but I can't do anything like this. So…" Turning a pained expression up to the white unicorn, Maddie gives her head a slow nod. "Just do whatever you need to do."

WOOSH! Mad is swept up into a hug, and even /showered with kisses/. YUCK. "Oh! Yes! I will!" And as if it were a particularly enthusiastic afterthought, her horn bops into Mad's forehead and just like that, the magic takes.

Before Maddie can even protest the application of kisses and affection, she's struck by magic! "He—" BOOP!

Fire. Fire everywhere. A vast ring of fire, with more fire criss-crossing, intersecting, and making a mess of the otherwise black ground. A mirror of the fire outside… At the center of this scorched plain, surrounded by yet more fire, is a little white filly. Holding up a great big black mountain. Looking absolutely drained. No hydra. No war. No battle. No conflict. It's come down to the weight of the Mad Mare's psyche bearing down on a magically fortified mote of innocence. With shakey knees…

Lily yells in surprise as she's blasted with sudden, intense heat. She stumbles back in the dreamscape, head down to protect it, and finally opens her eyes to squint. It's so…scorched. So barren. Her little heart breaks, and breaks again, as she spies the filly crumbling in the center. "Little one!" she calls. "I'm here to help!" And off she runs, toward the poor thing.

The mountain rumbles. Rumbles? Oh… It's not just a mountain. It's a volcano! And it's not just rumbling! It's erupting! Every step Lily takes towards the little filly, with the weight of a mighty volcano bearing down on her shoulders, the more unsteady the ground gets, and the more rumbly that 'mountain' is! And yet, the sound of Lily's voice snaps the attention of the filly up, squinting through the shimmery heat waves. "H..hello!?"

Lily gasps as it starts to erupt, and she races towards the little filly as fast as her legs can carry her. Because clearly, it's going to erupt one way or another. "I'm here! I'm coming! Please, just hold on! I'll save you!"

The distance closes! The volcano RAGES! It's erupting! OH THE LAVA! Careening down the mountainside, forming some sort of odd, crude face! Angry eyes… A big mouth made out of lava and fire! "YOOOUUUUU CAN'T SAAAAVE MEEEEEE!" the volcano rumbles! Which makes the filly shriek and stumble!

"NO!!!" Lily LEAPS into the air, horn lighting bright pink as telekinetic force crashes into the little filly, sending her flying from her spot, away from the volcano, and the lava. "I /CAN/ SAVE YOU!" she yells, leaping into the air and using the same magic to propel herself forward into flight toward the little foal, hoping to protect her. These are things she could never do in real life, but in a dreamscape? The sky's the limit!

The moment contact is made, between a magical bleeding heart of a mare, and a small filly holding up a volcano, there's something akin to an explosion! A bright light, a sensation of so much rushing wind! And then…

The cold hard floor of the abandoned Syndicolt ship. Whump!

Only something's different. There's a little white filly, tucked within Lily's hooves, looking dazed, confused, and very much not crushed by a volcano.

There's…also another body. A darker grey body, with metal legs, and an equally dazed and confused expression. Is that Maddie?

Lily hugs the little filly tight to her body, not even quite aware of the fact that things have shifted. She's fairly clinging to the poor dear. But finally she squints open her eyes… and blinks. And she spies the other pony there, and blinks again. That…was not supposed to happen.

But right now, most importantly, there's a little filly who needs comforting, and she cradles her close. "I've got you," she says gently. "No volcano's gonna crush you, sweetheart."

Sniffle. The little white filly seems oh so very happy to not be underneath a volcano! Or in a creepy cage of chaos! Or being almost trampled by fighting conscience monsters! Or…or… She breaks out fully into tears! Mixed joy and relief and stress and everything all in one long wail!

Which is what helps shake the dark grey mare out of her daze. Maddie? It sure looks like it. Full grown, but with those unmistakeable metal hind legs. Slowly rising up on all fours. "…What…" she says, her voice resonating with a hollow, echo sort of quality. Coal black eyes turn to gaze at Lily and her armful of filly, the voice rising again, barely more than a whisper. "…What have you done…?"

"Shhhhh, there there," Lily comforts, hugging the little white filly and petting her back. "It's okay. Everything is okay…" When Maddie asks her that question, she looks up, eyes full of nervous confusion, and shrugs. "I…I'm not sure," she murmurs.

Black eyes glimmer. Sparkle, even, though that could be a trick of the fire burning out nearby. Just as easily as it could be a reflection of the raging volcano that had so nearly crushed the white filly in Lily's arms now. "…You…" the voice echoes. "You saved her…from me…"

The bawling filly's ears perk up! Her crying stops almost immediately, turning into a soft whimper instead, lifting her head and looking up past Lily at the physical embodiment of something really, really bad.

The filly promptly screams. "AHHHHH!!"

"…I did," Lily says in a wavering voice. The filly screams make her jump and it spurs her suddenly and impulsively to action. If this thing was that volcano, if this thing was all that chaos and pain… Now's the time to RUN!

She grabs up the little one in her teeth and bolts, galloping as fast as her legs can take her. This needs to be fixed. This needs to be fixed SOON. But now? Now is NOT THE TIME.

The filly is still screaming, all the way out of the boat! Yet this sound of a small shrill squeal is not enough to mask the /other/ sound coming from the confines of the ship.

A laughter. A roiling, deep, echoing laughter, punctuating two words that could have been just as much a raging wind as spoken from any kind of dark and demonic pony! A sound that chases the fleeing Lily and her new filly prize all the way back to the Harbor!

"I'm freeeeeeeeeee! I AM FREEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!"