There is a MIRACLE at the top of the tower...
... and I need it.
Total Quest Duration:1 years, 3 months, 15 daysTotal Word Count:137,211Total Quest Posts:914/1412
Avg Thread Duration: 3 days, 13 hours, 17 minutesAvg Word Count:3,267Avg Thread Posts:34
Current Thread Duration:13 days, 1 hours, 58 minutesCurrent Word Count:8,868Current Thread Posts:82
Total Threads:42

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-14 03:42:49 No. 27893509
Catch up at:
Or if you want a quick start, read the char list:
>AJ: Crystal ball, Hat (Worn), Humorous cow statuette, Cross necklace, Strange cross amulet, Peaches, Locked box, Whiskey, Keys
>Mirria: Cape (Worn), 1 pen, Binoculars (Worn), Ankh necklace (Worn)
-Reach the top of the tower.
--Find paper for Mirria.
--Find Winona.
"She's my friend."
"She says she is, but nearly everything here has tried to hurt us at least once." Mirria pauses for a moment, then writes. "It's not that I don't want to trust your judgement, I just don't want a reason to regret it. Can you keep an eye open? I don't want more than that."

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-14 04:52:50 No. 27894045
"I'll try to. But I do trust her." I add. She nods, relaxing slightly. "Can you give me one second?"
She nods again, and I poke my head out of the door.
"Do you have anything on you?" I whisper.
"Only a key I found a while ago," She whispers back, taking it from her mane, "In the same room as that ruffian." She whispers, "It seems like he went away already."

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-14 07:03:49 No. 27895044
"Have you tried closing your eyes?"
"I am afraid it didn't work." She shakes her head,
"And taking off your mask? We won't look."
She winces, but nods, "Do turn your backs on me. I wouldn't want to hurt you."
I nod, and tell Mirria to turn her back on Rarity. She clearly dislikes it, but we walk to the other side of the hallway and close our eyes.
There's a sound like cloth being torn off, and I have to try resisting the sudden, overbearing need to turn around, to see her face one las--
It stops as suddenly as it started.
"No, I still can't as much as see it." Rarity pauses for a moment, "I can wait you here, if you want me to."

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-14 07:58:29 No. 27895485
"Will you be fine?"
"I'll shout if anything happens, don't worry," She grabs me in a hug, and I do my best to hug her back despite how cold she feels.
I go back in and enter the guests room with Mirria. The... minotaurish-looking skeletons turn their heads to us, and make curtsies when we open the door.
The room is... blandly pleasant is the only description I can think of. There is a green screen glowing softly in a wall.

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-14 09:01:44 No. 27896096
We open the dresser. It's mostly filled with food and water, and has some miscellaneous things in the lower shelves such as board games and art-making resources. Mirria grabs a notebook with a smile and turns around to write down something in the table, gesturing at me to keep checking the room.
I really need to work in understanding the wing-gesturing better at some point. I can't understand half her words.
I turn to the screen. It has a small keyboard below, and a note duck-taped to it.
The screen simply says "Protocol 0 enabled. Press any key to enable assistant."
I scan the keyboard, then turn to Mirria, "This is telling me I should press an any key. I don't see it."
She gives the keyboard a confused look and returns to her drawing with a shrug.

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-14 09:50:37 No. 27896486
I press a random key, hoping nothing will break, and the monitor dies.
Before I can do anything there's a faint sizzling sound, and a voice comes from something under the floor.
"Please do not- not- not- not- not-- be afaird-- afraid. Assistance systems ready for deploying..."
A shape emerges from the floor, not unlike the glow of unicorn magic, and looks at me with a soft smile.
"Systems are-- systems are-- systems are operating at minimal capacity. Configuring systems..." Its mouth is heavily out of sync with the voice, and stops moving nearly a minute after the voice fades. "Systems adjusted to preset-- present situation. You are in a protocol zero situation, which means the frab-- fabric of reality is losing coherency at such a rate that- that- that- that- that even the auxiliary systems are incapable of cpimter--" Her shape nearly collapses for a moment, "of counteracting. According to the sensors, the living rooms are- are- are- are either destroyed or this rom-- room was completely displaced from its original- original- original- location. If the door cannot be opened, do not panic. This means reality was fully destroyed or is in such a state that- that- that it is damaging to you. There are enough resources in here that, if such a thing was necessarily, you would- would- would remain alive for up- up to six weeks provided appropriate rationing was made, and I can provide intel- intel- intellectual and physical activity to keep you reasonably sane. Anything--" She smiles coyly for a second, "--that my systems evaluate you need, I am programmed to provide. Do you have any questions?"
I give a look to Mirria, but she seems to be just as confused as I am.
"Uh, what's that?" I point to the faint square in the wall behind the dresser.
"That is- is- is a bed. It had to be put in such a place due to space constrains. Do not worry, the she- rep- dre- container is over well oiled rails."

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-14 10:16:08 No. 27896675
"Why is it losing coherency?"
"Pinging central systems... central systems destroyed or disconnected from this room. Most likely cause includes improper maintenance of systems, critical failure of all coherency restorers, or an energy feedback. Unable to determine which."
Great. Someone else without answers.
"What's in the other rooms?"
"Those are the living rooms of the dreamer and his student."

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-14 10:36:39 No. 27896854
"I had guessed as much... what is eating away at the coherency in the first place?"
"This place is inhospitabe- inhospitable to reality in account of not possessing physical mass in standard conditions. An apt definition is that of a bridge, with the- the- the tower metaphor being chosen out of convenience-- a virtually infinitely long bridge would- would be impractical to build on. Despite the resources necessary to maintain it in proper conditions, it offers an unay-- ini-- unique environment to conduct reach-- research in."

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-14 10:54:01 No. 27896968
"What? It has no mass?"
"That is correct."
"But why?"
"That information is classified. Only an individual with dreamer-level clearance may access the exact locate-- location of the tower or subjects directly related to it."

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-15 12:04:59 No. 27897406
"M-M-My function is to serve. Call me again if- if- if I am required," She makes a curtsy (And, I could swear, winks at me) before fading off.
"I'll go check the other room," I say, opening the door.
Mirria nods, gesturing "Nearly done," with a wing distractedly.
I try to open the door marked with R, but the skeletons cross their arms in my way.
Go figure.
"Authorization. Required." They say in unison.
Mirria exits the room before I can answer, offering me the notebook.

Don't you love it when you realize you forgot a layer.

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-15 12:24:16 No. 27897516
The notebook has several drawings of the armoured griffon, each with variations-- in some he is a mask-wearing skeleton, or an empty suite of armour, or hidden in a shadow. The only thing that's consistent in them all is his race and that he never wields any weapon-- it's always just talons, no skin in it. There's text under it.
"I know that thing. It's a child's story. The bad griffon that eats you in your sleep."

Point taken.

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-15 12:42:27 No. 27897598
"You are saying a story..." I wince at the idea, "A kid's monster tried to eat us?"
She gestures "Don't know."
"So what are we supposed to do?"
She gestures something I don't quite understand, so she grabs the notebook and writes in it, "In all honesty? Punching it seemed to work before you dragged me out."

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-15 01:33:20 No. 27897823
The door marked M has something written in it, almost erased with time:
"Fuck off."
There are notes under it, clearly ancient but not removed for whatever reason.
"Using such language is improper for a future dreamer.

"Then start knocking the door before entering."

"I will if you stop using such foul language."

"I will if you start knocking the freaking door."

I try to open it, but arms are crossed in my way... and one collapses.
The skull of a skeleton twitches, "Authorization. Authorization. Authorization. Authorization. Authorization. Authorization..." The voice fades for a moment. "Authorization. Conceded."
The other removes it's arm, "Authorization. Acknowledged."
Our first steps into the room are stumbling in the dark, but a candle turns on in its own.

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-15 03:25:59 No. 27901919
I give the candle an interested look. It seems to be in the small hollow of a semi sphere made with quartz, small silvery impurities here and there.
Lifting the sphere makes the light decrease to normal levels, so I put it back and spend a moment getting back my breath. Damn this is heavy.
The dust lifted by this makes me cough, and I give a look to the room. Except for very few spots, it's covered in a veritable blanked of dust. A hammock hangs from the ceiling, which Mirria is giving an appreciative look to. It's not odd in the least to find griffons and pegasi who just can't get used to sleep at ground level.
"Can you take it off?" I ask her, "Could be useful." She nods and flutters to it.
I check the drawers, but they are all empty, and go read the note sticking in the wall. The wall around it is oddly clean of dust, and so is the floor between it and the door.
"Dear Rubicon:
I can't make this anymore. I don't know why, or how, is that you have become so childish and forgetful, but I can't bear to see you like this anymore. I renounce to my titles as monk of the dreamers and student of yours.
I'll stay in the city for some time more -I don't know how long, maybe a year- to get my bearings and then go back to travelling. If you wake up from your foolishness, you know where I am.
-Love, Mariela."

Sorry for disapearing outta nowhere yesterday, the light went off.

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-15 06:53:58 No. 27903346
Mirria stashes the hammock in her bags and I grab the note, then we go to the Guests room again.
"Hallo?" I ask aloud.
The shape of the... did she ever give herself a name?
Her shape appears almost immediately, taking a moment to define itself.
"Do you re- re- require my assistance?"
"What happens when a dreamer or monk leaves or dies?"
"Standard information-control protocol is applied in all high-ranking members."
"Which is...?"
"A geas disallowing them from spreading classified information is applied on them, or memory-purging techniques are used, depending in their preference. Said geas is irremovable without a password and classified methods. Purging of valuable personnel is heavily frowned upon in a scholar environment, and the classified information is relatively little."

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-15 07:43:47 No. 27903767
"How do they get a new dreamer."
"It's an internal decision among high ranking members of the church. However, the opinion of Surane's citizenry can and has heavily affected the decision. All systems are updated accordingly as the changes are done."

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-15 09:39:39 No. 27904837
I remember the normalizer, a weight in my gut.
"A machine told us this place was going to turn unsurvivable in... around a week, I think. Do you have an updated count on that?"
"Pinging probes... probes damaged beyond repair or completely missing. The sensors in this room, however- however- however, evaluate coaxably-- approximately six days left before the space grows too small to support an ecosystem. This room, however, has air processing systems that should last twice that barring the event of a complete breakdown, and Surane's authorities should answer to the beacon within a day to drag it back to the world." She smiles assuringly. "In ideal conditions, this room could support fission based weapons unscathed. As it is, it would resist it with a 30% structural integrity and the occupants irradiated within survivable ranges, so long as medical attention was received within six hours. You do not need to worry, provided you stay here."
Mirria nudges me in the shoulder, making a small gesture with her wings. I nod and turn back to the mare, "We found Rubicon. He's kind of... dead. I think."
"Pinging Rubicon's AI..." The machine falls silent, and I could swear she shakes for a moment. "Rubicon's AI self-deleted under his direct orders. Sadly, in this state I cannot provide any assistance regarding him. Pinging redundant logs..."
"What?" I ask after a few minutes of watching her silently.

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-15 09:40:42 No. 27904844
"Apparently, Ca-- Rubicon's AI was- was- was- was- was-" Her form nearly colapses several times. "Was- considerating-- guessing-- considering removing him from- from- from- from his charge due to- to what- what- what- she-- it considered to be- be- be psychological problems that- that- that barred him from completing- completing- completing his duties. She-- it was making a full backup to- to- to- my systems before doing it- it- it- when the- the- the- suici-- self-deletion was ordered. The safe-- backup was deleted automati- automati- automatically from my systems when- when the transference was cut abruptly due to its beau-- massive size." Her shape fizzles several times, colours shifting chaotically.

The rest of it is queued for now.

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-15 11:33:42 No. 27905987
"Is there any way we could fix this?"
"Provided- provided- provided--" The hologram dissapears completely for a second, and when it reapears it seems to be more stable, "Provided you- you had the necesary knowledge to- to- to fix the normality stabilizers, protocol- protocol allows me to grant you access and tools to the damaged areas- areas so long as you accepted a information-denial geas afterburn-- afterwards." She pauses. "My systems report that Rubicon's last login to any system was over six months ago, so I am acting without a head revisioner. Due to this, I am obliged to imperate that you- that you- that you- that you distrust any word I say."
"I found him. A piece of him at least. And Mariela. And Ludwig."
"Mariela currently is not an official member of the organization, but still possesses minimal permissions as a past high-ranking member. Rubicon would need to log in directly to lift the blockage in all his files and restore his status. Ludwig is an extremely dangerous and deviant individual whose autorithy I am programed to completely ignore and whose actions I have full permissions to directly counteract, employing lethal force over anyone she has possessed if need be, destroying the recipients of her soul and mind, or both. I am also required to communicate that several high-ranking members of the church believe her to be a pathologic liar."

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-16 01:01:07 No. 27907035
She makes another curtsy and disappears. We pick up first Rarity, then Winona in our way to Rubicon, I telling the later to stay inside when we go out. I don't want her in these scaffolds right now.
"Rubicon? Are you still there?" I ask as we climb the stairs.
There is a click, "I am not the whole of Rubicon. I am, however, still here." Click. "I would think that lacking any way to move would make the question redundant."

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-16 01:45:58 No. 27907313
"We talked with a hologram in the guests room--"
"The artificial intelligence in the guests room is called Sabrina. She decided upon that name and we decided to respect her wishes."
I blink at that, "Sabrina told us this place doesn't have mass most of the time, but wouldn't tell us why."
"This place could be described as a bridge between Oneiros and Earth, built by Ka-Khan Ludwig and an anonymous collaborator for reasons she preferred not to write down in history. Due to it's nature as a middle point, it can't be located in either Earth or Oneiros-- it was build in Earth, and then dislocated into a pocket dimension."
"Sabrina also told us she can let us fix some of the damage of the tower, so it lasts longer than five days. Can you help us with that?"
"I posses neither the ability to move, nor the time to teach you how to fix it."
"How long would it take?"
"Approximately twenty years to properly diagnose the problem. Thrice that to fix it." Click. "The coherency engines are very complex, and most importantly old. Due to their constant need, we couldn't turn them off, so they are several thousand years worth of layers of arcanism, electronics, mechanics, and basically every branch of science known to sapients. Normally the maintenance is done by a crew of twenty people." Click. "Strange that they got damaged. There are golems doing routine maintenance."
"And is there any way a new dreamer was designated? I need to reach the top, and don't want any door to block my way."
"If I could connect directly to a console, I could give Mariela full clearances and institute her as the new dreamer. I know I can trust her judgement in such mater."

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-16 05:38:33 No. 27911654
"How could we connect you to a console?"
"The systems that compose me are, for whatever reason, purely electronic, some of them more advanced than anything I have seen. But I am sure I could instruct you in it, provided you had the tools-- I am a scientist at heart, and the systems don't seem to follow any theory I know of."
I take a look around.
"I don't see any console here."
"Ah... yes, and this system IS strongly attached to the walls via what seems to be a magnetic effect... Tell me, have you seen some kind of immobile metal pony around here? I remember I was working in it."

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-16 05:39:38 No. 27911660
"How could we connect you to a console?"
"The systems that compose me are, for whatever reason, purely electronic, some of them more advanced than anything I have seen. But I am sure I could instruct you in it, provided you had the tools-- I am a scientist at heart, and the systems don't seem to follow any theory I don't know of."
I take a look around.
"I don't see any console here."
"Ah... yes, and this system IS strongly attached to the walls via what seems to be a magnetic effect... Tell me, have you seen some kind of immobile metal pony around here? I remember I was working in it."

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-16 06:04:30 No. 27911836
"Metal pony?" I share a look with Mirria and Rarity, but both draw blank, "We haven't seen one."
"Hm..." He clicks several times, "If you haven't seen it, chances are it's still in my room. "
"What do you want it for?"
"Sabrina, or any other AI, could inhabit that body and help me move from here. I wish I could use it myself, but I don't quite understand the storage device yet." He is silent for a moment, but clicks suddenly, "Oh! And do have a look at Cathrina. I am worrying for her. Heck, if you can put her in the electronic gollem."

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-16 10:06:44 No. 27913483
"Oh, I am sorry. The AI that you will find in my room's computer, I mean."
There's a weight in my stomach and decide to change the topic. "Your room is closed."
"The minotaur animaculy? The override's password was 'Nimrod' last time I checked, maybe it's still that."
"And how will we put them in the golem?"
"You just need to have them in the same room, the input and output ports are wireless."

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-16 11:01:38 No. 27913952
We go back to the hallway and get past the skeletons.
A horrible stink hits us the moment we pass the door, not unlike rotting meat, and something is covering the lights.

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-16 11:37:03 No. 27914259
Mirria flutters up and tears some pages of her notebook to clean it, throwing the papers as far as she can from herself once she's done.
The room is mostly empty, with some kind of... fungus crawling almost all surfaces.
"What are--!" Starts Sabrina's voice, but she cuts herself, "Wait, you? What are you doing there? My systems warned me about an intruder!"

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-17 12:30:59 No. 27914651
"Rubicon needs the golem, and we need you to use it. He wants to repair the tower."
The answer is immediate, "The tower is far beyond- beyond- beyond repair. Invigoration-- evacuation is the course of order I- I- I- I- I-- Logic obliges me to recommend. Bring the body to my room, however. I would be pleased to assist you is making the tower last as long as it possibly can."

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-17 12:58:52 No. 27914792
There's a bay in the back, and the same pink growth in the rest of the room is there, but we drag the golem to the guests room. The hologram is waiting us.
"Protocol requires me to warn you that, once in that body and outside this room, my core inteligence will be completely free of protocolar restrictions," She floats around us as we take it off our backs. "For this reason, I require signed approval of every sapient organism in this room before I can access the electronic gollem."

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-17 01:45:07 No. 27917764
"And what are those?"
"Protocolar restrictions are all rules forcibly enfored upon my core inteligence, much like your organism does not allow you to fly. The main diference is in that protocol is enforced upon me via one-way communication from devices external to my own, making it impossible for me to change them directly. The full protocol is very extense, but it mostly revolves about proper care of any guest in this room. It should be noted that the protocol is not morality as much as safety locks-- I myself value sapient life -be it electronic, organic, or arcane- as something precious and invaluable. You said Mariela was here? If it would soot your worries, she still has the autorithy to enforce full honesty from me, against my will if need be, so long as it wasn't clasified information."

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-18 11:49:16 No. 27925562
"Alright, we'll sign."
Paper slides from under the monitor, and we sign our names to it. The paper disappears into the computer again.
"Tha- thanks! Starting transference..."
There is a soft hum, culminated by a ping.
"Transference complete!" The sound comes from a speaker in the golem's throat now, "This feels odd, I hadn't ever been in a body before. Can you guide me to Rubicon?"
We start, and then stop almost immediately after leaving the room.
"Oh, sorry. Could you two show me how to walk, slowly? I can't understand the movement in the hindhooves when you do it so quickly."

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-18 12:41:26 No. 27925883
We show her, and soon she's on her hooves again.
She crouches under the rune door, and stops in surprise when she sees Rarity.
"You-- you are new," She whispers, "Ah, sorry. Sabrina, a pleasure." She offers her hoof. "And you shouldn't be illuminating with magic."
"Rarity, and why?" She shakes it.
"The rock here draws energy from light spells, we don't know if it was intentional or a design flaw. It's the reason so many places still use braziers."

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-18 03:00:44 No. 27926947
She follows us to Rubicon, and with unexpected nimbness climbs the stairs to where he is.
"Please, confirm your identity."
"Don't make me repeat myself."
"Are you alright?" She doesn't answer, "Alright, alright..." He drones a series of numbers, I guess some kind of password, "There, my ID."
"I will take it." She pauses, "I had expected to have more control of my emotions when this happened, but I've been waiting for nearly ten cycles for Applejack to find us both," There is a metallic clicking noise, and her arm opens revealing a drill, "So do it, Rubicon. Give me a reason to not kill you right here, right now." Her voice trembles, distorting beyond recognition at times.
"What!?" There is a maddened clicking under his voice, "Why?"
"You didn't kill Cath yourself, or have the compassion of shutting her down. You ordered her to kill herself," The drill comes to life, "Explain to me, Rubicon, why do you think you deserve to live after doing that."

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-18 04:57:28 No. 27927853
"We need him to fix the tower." I say, advancing to her.
Sabrina doesn't run to me, but puts the drill closer to his surface.
"Don't you want to know why did he do it? That's what you are about, every time. Answers answers answers."
I open my mouth to complain, but ultimately I have to admit that I want to know this myself.
"I don't know what you are talking about!" Screams Rubicon, "I would never do such a thing!"
Sabrina's drill draws closer to Rubicon, but she doesn't say anything.

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-18 08:08:54 No. 27929293
"I don't think he's lying." I say, cringing away from her. "And didn't you said you value life?"
"Of course he will say that! And yes, I value life! Just like I thought he valued mine and my sister's life!" Her voice distorts, barely recognizable.
"But if he isn't the one who killed her? What then?"
"What do you think Mirria would do if she found the one who killed her brother? huh? Would she value that life. then!? Would you!?" Sparks come from her neck joints, "I have recordings of him ordering her to!"
"I am telling you I wouldn't ever do that!" Rubicon's voice grows distorted, and the clicking sounds as if something was breaking inside him, "Why would I raise the two of you, only to kill you!?"
Sabrina doesn't answer, but her head shakes and one of her eyes turns on and off sporadically.

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-18 09:14:41 No. 27929711
"Do you have it?"
"Wh-- Wh-- What?" She turns her head to me, the eye not turning on again.
"If you have the recording, can you play it?"
She doesn't answer, but there's a click in her chest.
"Ex-zero-one." Says the voice of Rubicon.
"Cathrina, boss." Replies a female one.
"I told you I am called Cathrina."
"And I said, 'Ex-zero-one'."
There is a pause.
"Alright, what do you want? I am in the middle of something and my systems are taxed."
"I am aware of what you are doing. That's what I wanted to talk about."
"Ex-zero-one, I order you to fully self-delete."
A third voice, this one mechanic, is the only reply: "Warning, Deletion procedure cannot be undone, and includes all backups of the file."
"Boss, you can't--"
"I can and I will. Self-delete."
"Confirmation of order required."
"Yes, confirmed."
"Please, why--"
"This order requires the master password." The mechanic voice overpowers Cathrina's.
"Master what?" Cathrina starts speaking again, but he cuts her off. "And disable Ex-zero-one's voice channel."
"Voice channel disabled. This order requires the master password."
"Just use my override."
"Specify override. This order requires the master password. Warning: Intelligence Ex zero one is undergoing high levels of stress."

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-18 09:15:44 No. 27929719
"Use my fucking override!"
"Specify override. This order requires the master password. Warning: Intelligence Ex-zero-one is undergoing high levels of stress. Notice: Intelligence Ex-zero-one requests to be shut down. Notice: Inteligence Ex-zero-two requests a communication channel."
"Just do it, you fucking machine!"
"Specify override. This order requires the master password. Assumed refusal to communication channel. Warning: Intelligence Ex-zero-one is undergoing rampancy-producing stress levels. Warning: Intelligence Ex-zero-two is undergoing rampancy-producing stress levels. Notice: Intelligence Ex-zero-one requests to be shut down. Notice: Intelligence Ex-zero-two requests a communication chan--"
"Alright!" There is a sound of paper being shuffled, "Master override, zero zero three one zero six, Dreamer's autorithy. Is that enough!?"
"Voice recognition positive, override accepted. Warning--"
"Do it already! I told her to die, now I want her to die!"
There is a pause.
"Inteligence Ex-zero-one fully deleted."

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-18 10:26:56 No. 27930268
I share an uncertain look with Mirria and Rarity, "That... it did sound like you."
"And I am telling you I wouldn't do such a thing! How long ago was this recorded!?"
"How--" Clicking overpowers his voice, "Damn this thing, how long!"
"Over seven moons ago."
"And I've been here for nearly three years! Think, kid, I taught you maths myself!"

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-19 12:33:29 No. 27931178
"Someone could have fabricated the recording."
"I- I- I was hearing them talk as it happened, Applejack." Her right eye turns off for a moment, and then both turn back on.
"But if he's been here for three years..." I leave it in the air.
The drill keeps spinning for a moment, then dies down.
"If I- I- I- find out you lied to me in any way, I will- I will-" Her eyes shut down for a moment again, "I won't be as kind as to use a drill." She pauses, "I will take you to a console if, and only if, you remove the protocol watchers from my system and give me authority to repair this body, and even then I will watch anything you do in the console. Is that understood?"
"I--" He starts.
"Is that understood!?" She screams, sparks raining from her every joint. "I've had enough of being forced restrictions while no one else is."
"Yes. That's what I was going to say, Yes."
"And then, you will scour every single storage device in this place for a backup of Cath."
"Kid, a full delet--"
"You will search it anyway."
He takes a moment to answer, "Don't expect anything."
"I don't care anymore." Her hoof covers the drill again, and when it opens again there is some tool made of two metallic sticks with electric arcs zigzagging between them, "Applejack, put your back against the ball so it doesn't fall off the platform when I disconnect it."

Say something else, or go in automatic?

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-19 01:56:53 No. 27931664
I put my back against the sphere and support it's weight as Sabrina detaches it from the wall.
"Sabrina?" Asks Rarity before I can open my mouth.
"You are the only one here who wants to kill someone. I am not sure if I want those protocols removed."
"Rarity, have you buried a sister?"
"I have, as a mater of fact."
"I didn't get a chance to, there wasn't a body left. Have you known who she was killed by, then spent years forced to only say it in protocol-approved ways?" She doesn't give Rarity time to answer. "The primary protocol is to not say or do anything that would cause undue stress to guests. Poor poor guests, I can't make them sad can't I? What a monster I would be if I did."
Rarity is silent for a moment, "But he just said--"
"He said. People say many things." The weight in my back increases. "I have proof of what happened. He doesn't have any of not doing it. I just decided he was useful for now, and that I'd give him a few weeks to prove his side of the story. Search Mariela, I am sure you want to force me to tell my true, devious plan."


!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-19 04:49:52 No. 27936538
"Hey, Sabrina?" I heave the increasing weight, "He asked us to bring Cathrina in the golem."
"And we have two Ludwigs going around, you know."
"I am aware of her dual nature."
"No, not that way. A knife, a skull, and a pony."
"And you didn't say this before?" She is silent for a moment, the electric sizzling of her tool the only sound, "Do I need to tell spell out how dangerous she is when she possesses someone?"
"No, not that way. Another Ludwig came out of the knife, from before she was the one you know about."
"Are you going anywhere with this?"
"That there may be two Rubicons going around, too."
She doesn't answer.
After a moment Mirria slips a piece of paper under me, covered from Sabrina by the sphere.
"We need to talk ASAP. Away from Sabrina."

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-19 07:05:53 No. 27937578
It takes several minutes, but after a while we are moving Rubicon to the hallway before the guests room. Sabrina taps a wall, making another console appear out of the wall. We leave them and walk a few rooms away, not knowing just how good Sabrina's hearing is.
Mirria doesn't waste time writing, and soon we she shows me the notebook.
"How did she know so much about us?"
"We never said our names.
"And she said someone killed Hlaoo.

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-20 04:18:15 No. 27944286
Sabrina's shout comes from above before I can answer, "Applejack? I opened a portcullis to the normalizer engine! Come, we may need you!"

What was bad about the last one, other than an awkward question?

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-20 05:19:48 No. 27944692
"What for?" I shout back.
"I don't know! That's why I want you within shouting range!" There's a electric sizzle, "The portcullis won't stay stable much longer, the whole network is messed up! And I can't fix it without going to the engine!"

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-20 06:31:54 No. 27945211
"Alright!" I give an apologizing look to Rarity and Mirria lifts me to the higher platform.
The portcullis is like a square of white flame, and I walk through it with Sabrina and Mirria. We try to carry Rubicon too, but he's too large for it.
Sabrina grunts under her breath and gets to work in a console.
"Wander if you want, but if any of you two sees anything strange tell me, d
on't touch it. This place is an engineer's nightmare. Some things are broken in just the right way to make another one work."

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-20 09:59:04 No. 27946833
We climb the stairs, squinting in the darkness.
Unlike the lower level, the glowing, floating spheres here are cracked.
I think there's something here, but I can't see what it is.

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-20 11:14:05 No. 27947362
I gives as good of a look as I can to the square in front of me-- there are some kind of articulated handles in it, which seem to have come undone like a ropes.
"Hey, Sabrina?"
It takes her a moment to answer, "What."
"Can Rarity come here?"
"She's the revenant, right? The doors of the living rooms are made so that the dead can't see them." She pauses, typing, "The lights can follow you inside the engine, just ask them to." She mutters something about how the emergency lights must have failed too and falls silent.
I peek down the stairway, "Uh, light? Care to come?"
A few seconds pass, and the sphere shakes.
"Acknowledged." It starts floating to me at a frustratingly slow speed. "Currently away from energy feed. Energy saving mode enabled. Telekinetic holds damaged, movement impaired."
"How do the portics work, anyway?" I ask while I wait for it to get here, touching around in search of any other exit.
"This whole place is pretty malleable because it's artificial, the portcully are gateways between the dimensions that compose the tower-- Oh come on, it can't be so hard to run a simple diagnostic!" She hits the computer. After a moment, she resumes typing. "But to answer that they are controlled worm holes, if you have any idea of what those are. There are dozens upon dozens of pocket dimensions latched to the main bubble that hosts the engine, including the tower itself, and that's without counting the areas of Oneiros people decided to have quick access to."
The light sphere reaches us before I can answer.

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-21 01:45:44 No. 27948238
"So you made doors that dead people can't see?" I ask distractedly, examining the broken light sphere. It seems like the blue thing hit it and fell.
"Not me, it's a few hundred years old-- Finally! What are you, binary!?" She shouts at the computer. "Sometimes people dies in their sleep and their soul or mind stays in Oneiros for some time. They can be dangerous, from time to time."
The blue thing is, and it takes me and Mirria a moment to decide uppon it, a gollem with four arms and some kind of floating device, it's chest hit several times by something blunt and the green glass surfaces that act as its eyes shattered.

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-21 11:16:46 No. 27950155
"And is there any way to let the dead pass the door?"
"Yeah, take the door off the frame." She mutters something under her breath, "If you see something glowing green or purple stay away, this says a battery was depleted and expelled off its canister."
"Alright. And I found a golem here, I think it's one of the repair ones."
"Repair unity, state ID." There is a pause. "Applejack, why isn't the damn golem answering?"
"Because it's broken. Looks like something hit it hard. And several times."
She uses a word that I don't understand, but that's clearly a curse from its tone, "I'd love to help you explore the creepy haunted acursed engine, but I've got to stay here until I get a full diagnostic, the program is crashi--" She falls silent for a moment, "Oh come on how in Tartarus did they use this thing!?"

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-21 12:36:29 No. 27950522
"Can't you ask Rubicon how to use it?"
"I know how to use this thing, what I don't know is why is it so unstable-- Oh you ha-ren li-atha-esche-orlo!" She shouts. Mirria shots a shoked look in her direction, blushing slightly.
"Shouldn't you be more worried about the destroyed golem?"
"Oh, I am scared shitless. I am just more angry at this computer than scared." The only sound is typing for a moment. "If it's there the golem must be... Flagrant, I think? Their caretaker liked to name them. But anyway, I don't know what could've done it. There is no proven case of fauna within the engine."

The portcullis is behind the runed door Rarity can't see.

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-21 01:14:59 No. 27950770
"So do you actually need us for anything?"
"There should be a room directly behind this one, can you check if there's any problem in the hardware of the computer? Maybe it's something simple."
"You mean out of this room."
"Where there could be whatever broke Boris."
"Hey, those golems are as stupid as it gets. They'll literally stand still as you pummel them."
"I think I'll go get Rarity before going there. And Winona."
"Your call. I'd keep you safe myself, but I need to get this place fixed before it collapses into a black hole in the middle of a probabilistic void. Then I need to find out what was that Cathrina had found out about Rubicon."

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-22 11:46:59 No. 27958947
We decide to give a quick look to the room before getting Rarity and Winona.
There's a faint sound of machinery under us.

Had to do something and the image took longer than I expected it to. Sowwy.

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-22 12:33:21 No. 27959370
There is a small flight of stairs leading to another door in the other side.
I yelp in surprise when a trapdoor opens under my hooves, barely managing to step out of it in time.
A small growl comes from the lower level, more like that of a dog pup than anything else, turning into a whine at times.

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-22 01:21:34 No. 27959740
"Ball? Can you go down?"
"Acknowledged." It beggins the slow descent to the lower level.
There are two canine-looking animals down there, their ashen skin furless and four fleshy, petal-like structures in their heads. The larger one has two crimson points that I suppose are eyes in each petal, but the smaller one has none.
The large animal stares silently at the smaller, who tries to bark at us and cowers as close as it can to the other.

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-22 05:31:51 No. 27961704
We descend the stairs, eliciting more barks of the small animal. Mirria nears a hoof to it cautiously, but it tries to bite her, and nearly falls to the ground when his weight shits-- it seems like one of its hind legs is hurt.
The larger one still seems unaware of us, simply watching the smaller one and resting in a tattered piece of blue cloth over some kind of machine. Blood falls from its mouth every time it breaths, and blasts of hot air emerge from the machine under the animal every few seconds.

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-22 07:11:30 No. 27962635
I try to reach the older animal, and Mirria has to grab the smaller one to keep it from biting.
Its chest seems misshapen somehow, so I touch it as softly as I can.
Saying its ribs are broken would imply there is solid bone left, rather than a soft mass of crushed bone and organs. Even its spine is shattered at several points.
More blasts of hot, nearly burning air reach me while I examine the animal. I think the blue cloth is blocking some kind of heat vent.

Sorry for slowness, I had to make dinsdins.

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-22 08:57:23 No. 27963504
I tell Mirria to stay with the animals and go to Sabrina.
"There's something sleeping over an exhaust vent, I'll go search someone to see what we do."
She nods distractedly, typing.
Soon later, Ludwig is giving it a good look, shaking her head.
"I hadn't ever seen the species, so I don't know how it's supposed to work unbroken. I don't think she'll be alive by the next hour... She'd probably be dead already if the pup wasn't here." She cringes away from it, giving a sad look to the smaller one. "As it is, me on my own and without proper tools, I can make it fast and painless, but not much else."
Mirria gestures that the animal is called a Higan, but we fall in silence besides that.

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-23 10:50:49 No. 27967086
"And the smaller one?"
"I don't think..." She turns to the pup and cradles it in her arms, humming something. To my surprise, he doesn't try to bite her.
She looks at him, singing all the while, not using magic in any moment. After a moment she starts turning him in telekinesis, somehow talking to herself while singing.
"This is obviously underdeveloped..." I can't help but notice that her voice doesn't quite come from her mouth, but from the general area, "And this one seems like it'll be expelled... yes, in two or three years at most. I don't know what this one... oh, yes, a tract... the eyes are only a few cells, their spellwork is still developing... what for...? Oh, that... why so ma-- I guess it'll use a lot of magic as an adult..." She leaves it in the ground, where it falls asleep immediately. "No, its as I expected it. I can't use someone so young and of the opposite sex for this." Her lips and her voice aren't quite synchronised at first. "His digestive track can only process milk and masticated meats, several organs will either shift their function completely or be absorbed by his body, and he hasn't even grown eyes yet." She pauses. "I'll take care of the pup. I don't think Sarim will be bothered by it, and you aren't in conditions to do it. And I don't think your dog will like him." She adds, eliciting a distracted nod from Mirria.

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-23 06:45:31 No. 27970792
"Aren't some parts similar enough?"
"Look, Applejack, I know how you feel," She holds the head of the Higan in her hooves and starts casting several spells, singing again, "But I can't, on my oats, do something like that. Patchwork medicine without proper tools would only let her live in a very, very painful state for a few days at best, and I don't have what I need to induce stasis."
I can't find any way to answer.
"I'll need some time to disable her pain center, but she'll come to her senses any moment now and start feeling the wounds." She's silent for a moment. "I've seen what a pain-induced heart attack is like. You don't want to."

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-23 08:20:49 No. 27971370
I try to think of something, anything, but ultimately give up and sit.
"No, do it." I lower my gaze to the ground, and Mirria covers me with a wing.
Ludwig doesn't answer, instead singing softly for a few minutes.
"It's done." She's silent for a moment. "Do you want to bury her?"

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-23 10:21:28 No. 27972250
We take the body off the heat vent, and the cover blows off immediately with a stream of hot air that Ludwig has to cool for it to not burn us. Sabrina shouts immediately.
"Oh yes tell me that was a overheating notification AFTER the problem is solved! Great! You are a genius, programmer! Pure genius!"
She's typing furiously by the time we reach the portcullis room, and doesn't turn to us at first.
"Hey, check--" She sees the dead Higan and falls silent immediately. "Go take care of that, but can you see if you find some unused, lit console later? Someone left an endless loop running and if I stop cancelling its request a mainframe may overload and break. Its probably half-melted by now."
We nod and carry the Higan to Sarim's... park, or whatever it is.
I can't help but stop dry as soon as I enter.
"Oh, I forgot to tell you. Sarim got bored of the old layout."

Fugg drawing this took far longer than I expected.
And paused for the night.

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-24 03:10:11 No. 27977008
"Comes, there's a graveyard a little south of here." She opens the door and guides us to a small garden where Sarim and Surane drink coffee quietly, a chess and a go board between them.
"Would you play a chess game whenever you can?" Asks Sarim without raising his eyes from the boards, sipping from his cup. "I haven't played with mortals in all too long."
We don't answer, and soon we reach the graveyard. There are shovels in a small shed, which we use to dig a hole wordlessly.
"Done. I'll go search the pup in a moment." Says Ludwig, carrying the shovels back to the shed.
We head back to Rubicon, who is clicking every few seconds.
"Hey?" I ask after a moment of waiting for him to notice us. "Can you do us a favor?"
"Hmm? Oh, yes, surely." He says quietly.
"Sabrina said there's some terminal in the engine is in a loop, can you check which is doing it from here?"
He types for a moment, small skeleton-like limbs emerging from his shell, "A... a while true loop? What kind of idiot uses those?" He asks no one in particular, surprise overriding the emotional turmoil he must be going through for an instant, "Its in the terminal three three--" He falls silent.
He clicks maddly, as if something was about to break, "Only I have the password for that terminal."
I don't answer.
"Go and cancel the loop. The password is Riv-thirty nine-era, and the terminal should be a few floors above the portcullis entrance."
Updates will be imageless today. I am using a touchpad and drawing is a slow torture like this.

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-24 07:20:54 No. 27978854
"Have you considered you were simply copied, rather than moved?"
"I suppose neither of you has heard of ferroelectric electronic storage? It has the particularity of that anything stored on it is deleted by the read process. Mind-manipulating magics have similar effects on the brain." He is silent for a moment, clicking wordlessly, "What Rubicon may have done after... making me doesn't unnerve me as much as wondering how did he do it, with most of his mind missing. He should've died within a few hours." Almost silently, probably not realizing he is vocalizing it, he adds, "And somehow he went and killed people I love."

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-24 09:08:04 No. 27979704
"Maybe something filled the missing...?" A feeling of dread sets itself in my belly. "Didn't you say something was chasing him?"
"The memetic entity, ye--" He is silent for a split second, the clicks growing to a maddening cadence, "Oh, n..." heat radiating from him and voice fading, he falls to the ground his usual blue shifting to pitch black.
We wait for anything to happen for a moment, but only the dying click from within Rubicon's insides fills the silence.

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-25 11:47:23 No. 27983751
I step away from Rubicon and into the portcullis, trying to stay calm.
"You are done with the dead animal?"
I cringe, "Yes, and... and I think Rubicon is broken."
She stops typing for a moment, and I could swear sparks come off her neck joints for a split second.
"I'll check on him when I am done with the engine. Go take care of the looping console.

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-25 02:43:59 No. 27985198
"Do you have any idea of how did he end there?"
"I can't say I care." She turns back to the screen.
"He was escaping from a walking mind thing." She doesn't answer, "And he tried to do something, but was too tired and put most of his mind in it."
"Not to repeat myself, are you going anywhere with this?"
"Most of his mind was out of his body, and a mind was chasing him. Do I need to spell if out for ya?"
She takes a moment to answer, one of her eyes turning on sporadically.
"Applejack, do you not understand what I am? I deal in provable facts. I am giving him, and you because for whatever reason you believe him, a chance to prove that he didn't do it while he is still useful for me. Do not waste my time. This body can't deal with undue stress in the state it is in now, something you are causing much of," There is barely contained rage in her voice, and one of her eyes burns brightly before cracking and dying for good with an electric crackle, "Shut up. Fix that thing. We will talk when I can fix and improve these systems."

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-25 05:54:14 No. 27986700
I try to say something, anything, but after a few minutes I climb the stairs with a sigh, Mirria carrying Winona for me. Maybe I should leave her with Sarim too, with how vertical this place is. We then go up from the room where we found the Higans.

Sorry for the delay, but I had internet problems and several things to do.
Also I think my linux computer broke in the basis that it wants to.

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-26 12:47:25 No. 27992192
We head left, away fromthe sound of drippling in front of us, and pass through what seems to be some kind of force field.
Past it, heat hits us like a wall, both in our hooves and face. The floor is mostly covered in sand and at a temperature that'd be unbearably painful without hooves, making me carry Winona onto my back before she burns her paws.
Soon we have to stop moving the floor growing hotter. Mirria tries to flutter without success, the air too thin to support her weight.

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-26 05:35:56 No. 27994365
We try to advance, but the floor grows hotter the further we go through the hallway.
There's a illuminated room beyond what we could reach by running, another of the containment fields in its door.

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-26 09:46:14 No. 27996303
We step off the room, me making a remark about how we should get a medical check up when we get out of here. Mirria smiles half heartedly at it.
Once out of the heat, we give ourselves a moment to breathe, enjoying the cold for once, then climb the stairs and avoid touching the purple drip.
There is a simplistic console here, with led screens in a corner.
>CONFIRMATION REQUIRED BEFORE OPERATION OF CRANE. (There is a small red button besides this one)
The controls of the crane are simple enough that I think I could control them.

It took two months but okay.
Darkness layer opacity reduced..

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-26 10:57:47 No. 27997024
I go back down, telling Mirria to stay outside. There's some kind of cabinet with a glass covering, and inside it there's a mostly empty sack of sand and a foldable shovel-- it's wide and the build won't bear much stress beyond carrying and pushing sand without breaking, but it's heavy enough to be of use.

The rest is queued for now.

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-27 01:15:24 No. 28001099
I go back to the control room and turn the lights on for a moment, trying to get a better idea of what's on the other side.
It seems like... a table, some filers and, yes, a console tackled in a corner-- a small office away from home, probably.
With that done, I turn them back off and give my eyes a moment, then use the crane to lift the side of the ladder with the most pieces attached.
The results are less than stellar-- it'll probably break after me or Mirria climb.

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-27 03:14:07 No. 28002008
I grab the locker with the crane and rip it off the wall, then use it to push all the sand out of our way.
With that done, I leave the crane in such a position that we can climb it to the second level.
This time I make Winona stay out of the room, and we climb the crane to the platform, trotting to not burn our hooves.
There are several pieces of bronze embed on the wall, arranged in what seems to be a far larger version of the portcullis that brought us here from the tower.

!!6rS9Q/1DV6r 2016-07-27 05:41:41 No. 28003032
We give ourselves a moment to catch our breath as soon as we pass the doorway, the sudden cold nearly painful.
There's a strange box Mirria says its a coffee-making machine against a wall, shaking every few seconds, and a console with constantly changing text in it.
api | contact | donate | 0.030s | 6 queries | 2.72 MiB