There is a MIRACLE at the top of the tower...
... and I need it.
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!CammyIzMqA 2017-04-13 06:36:30 No. 29858584
> Catch up on
> INV:
"Wh--" I blink rapidly, realizing that my eyes are painfuly dry. "What?"
"What's wrong?" Asks Mirria, concerned.
"I am not sure." I rub my head and thankfully the headache goes away quickly. "I think it's Twilight." Mirria's eyes shot to the window immediately, so I put a hoof on her withers, "The elements' connection is odd sometimes. Don't worry. Let's see if we can find those--"
There is a shout above. I put on my bags and trot up there with Mirria, Rarity and Winona nowhere to be seen.
"Calm down," Someone I haven't seen before is trying to soot the skeletal griffon that attacked us before, "Calm down, please."
The griffon shouts in response, "What for!?"
"Please, you have to breathe, remember your exercises?"
"Do you see any lungs in here, Rubicon?" The griffon points at his hollow chest, walking circles around Rubicon. "What use is calming down? I am a nightmare! Reduced to mere function, assuming I ever was more than that!"
"But you don't have to be," Rubicon turns to keep facing him. "Have you truly forgotten that?"


!CammyIzMqA 2017-04-13 06:36:57 No. 29858589
"I haven't." The griffon avoids looking at Rubicon, his voice softer for a moment. "Do you know how long did I resist the pull after you decided to disappear? Not years, not months, two days. That's how long I could resist before trying to pounce on someone!" His voice grows hysteric once again, "You made me think I could... I could do something! But I couldn't, and you just disappeared! I was jut an experiment for you!"
"Astrail, I love every student like I would a son," Rubicon tries to move closer to Astrail, but the griffon just moves away.
"Look at yourself, it's happened to you too... you are just a pile of scrap, reduced to function without form or purpose, the same this tower does to everyone... everything." His voice grows quieter as he speaks, reduced to a whisper by the last word.
"I choose a body where I can't feel, yes," Rubicon walks against Astrail, pushing him closer to the hole, "And if my function is trying to repair what I did wrong... then so be it. Would you deny me my function?"
Astrail looks at him quietly, his empty sockets giving no indication of what he feels, and walks outside through the hole.
Rubicon looks at the hole for a moment and sits down, his head low.

!CammyIzMqA 2017-04-13 11:56:11 No. 29860558
>>29859387 >>29858961
"Rubicon?" I walk to him carefuly, followed by Mirria, "Is that really you?"
He doesn't answer immediately , instead looking at his metallic hoof, "I can't say so."
I share a look with Mirria, who shakes her head, "You... he'll come around."
"I am not so sure, Honesty..." He gives me a sideways look for a moment and turns back to the hole, "I always admired your resilience, from afar... but some of us can only advance despite the weariness, and have to stop every once in a while while others, like him, fear to they don't have any."
"It's fine to rest." Is the only thing I can say, putting a hoof where his withers would be. He doesn't seem to notice. "Don't try to do everything at once. Pace yourself."
"I know, yes." He's quiet for a moment, "Have you heard of the Ordanaic dilemma?"
"I can't say I have." I say after a moment.
"Ordanai was a grand wizard, who sought to create life and made a daughter from wood and string." He says automatically, seemingly having told the story many times. "His daughter desired to be real and sought a lover, convinced than his love would be enough... but it wasn't, and when he found out what she was, she stabbed him, again and again. Ordanai found this and commited suicide, mad from guilt, leaving his daughter alone in the world."
"And the dilemma is that?"
"The dilemma is whether or not he was responsible for his creation's murder, or for helping his creation after it did something he wouldn't ever." He sighs, only a sound without any air being moved, "That is what I deleted from my thought process before, Honesty. When I remembered that my creation is the cause of this whole disaster."
Unplanned for update.

!CammyIzMqA 2017-04-14 01:28:51 No. 29863396
>>29860767 >>29861367
"You can only teach so much." I say as comfortingly as I can.
"Have you been a mother, Honesty? Or a teacher?"
"You could say so." I ignore Mirria's question-loaded look completely.
"Then you'll understand that despite what you can do, you feel responsible for more." He gulps, "I tried to teach the child, and I believe he tried to understand, but at the end nothing remained with him."
"The child." I repeat, remembering vaguely a few mentions of one in the first floor.
"Something I made... or found, I am not sure, and who stole my body, and that has tried to kill everyone in here a great many times. The giant, Honesty. I'd recognize its voice anywhere." He turns to me and seems to notice Mirria for the first time, perking in surprise, "You, my dear," He stands and walks to her to grab her in a careful hug, as if afraid of hurting her with limbs he isn't controlling properly yet, "Dearest Princess... I loved your brother like life itself, and grieve him as much as you do."
"Would you guide me to Master Sarim's current location?" Rubicon interrupts her. "I am in need of sharing word with my teachers."

Last player prompt was to search a few recordings and notes that weren't checked. You can check them now or pursue the conversation.

!CammyIzMqA 2017-04-14 03:11:32 No. 29864063
>>29863421 >>29863732
"You do know Sarim's a door, right?" I ask as carefully as I can.
"Master Sarim is a memetic entity inhabiting utterly complex draconic machinery, but yes." He lets go of Mirria, who is still looking at him in utter confusion. "I am aware he is a library too."
"He's in the floor below." It's all Mirria can say.
"Much appreciated, princess." He starts walking away, but turns when I speak up again.
"The giant doesn't look anything like a pony."
"It's been years, Honesty. In that time, he destroyed completely our order and country and killed Cathrina and Hlaoo. I have no way to know what he's done with my body."

!CammyIzMqA 2017-04-14 06:05:49 No. 29865260
I walk to him, followed by Mirria, "What do you know about it?"
"What for?" He doesn't stop walking this time.
"We have to take care of it." Mirria talks before I can, "It's tried to kill is constantly."
"Take care... do you want me to tell you how to kill a student of mine?" He asks as we take the short elevator ride to the level Sarim is in.
We don't answer.
"I made the boy inspired by Princess Luna's Tantabus." He tries to jump to the ledge that separates the elevator from the rest of the room, unsuccessfully, so he simply waits for me and Mirria to help him, "Nightmares and dreams can gain corporeal existence, but personhood is something much more difficult. My mistake was in working on the theory that they are two classes of the same object, which was completely, utterly shattered by the boy. As a nightmare, Tantabus sought to overstep its function to meet its purpose and help Princess Luna not feel guilt-- Forcing her to leave it behind. As a dream, the boy simply wants more and more without understanding why."

!CammyIzMqA 2017-04-14 10:06:01 No. 29866924
>>29865925 >>29865955
"What was the gi-- the boy's function?"
"His function?"
"Luna made Tantabus to not forget, and it decided to help her." Luna still has Tantabus around, but usually doesn't talk about her. "What did you make the boy for?"
He's quiet at that, the dark objects in his eyes that I suppose are pupils shifting around. "I... never thought about that. I need to speak with my masters now."
I offer a hoof to help him help, and nearly fall over from his weight when he climbs, "Hmp... Could you make it into something else?"
"Not as long as it presents the resistance it surely will." He says distractedly, his mind somewhere else.
He climbs the ledge and falls off it immediately, crashing on the other side.
"Rubicon?" I shout.
"The body is fine." It's all he says.
I share a look with Mirria, who shrugs, and hop to the top of the ledge to climb down to Sarim.
By the time we enter Sarim's library Rubicon is already inside-- looking around quietly.
"Ah." The cat that Sarim decided to be now hops into the window, "Long time no see."
"Too long, master." Rubicon lowers his head. "And I regret it's not in better circumstances."
"Do you want to talk with my sisters?"
"I can't say I want to, but..." Rubicon leaves it in the air.
The cat nods and turns around, "Ludwig? We got visitors."
Both of them heed the call-- the pony entering through the door and, a moment later, the knife spinning to the windowsill besides Sarim.
"What is that you want?" Asks the knife immediately.
"Repentance, teacher." Rubicon lowers his head in a reverence, "And guidance. I... am aware you have confronted the usurper of this tower repeatedly."
"The child, yes. A hysteric fool."

!CammyIzMqA 2017-04-14 10:06:33 No. 29866931
"Teacher?" Asks the pony Ludwig.
"I have to confess that... that the child is my creation." The knife doesn't answer, "And that I have realized what might be my primary mistake only minutes ago, and not due to my own wisdom."
There's only silence, interrupted suddenly by pony Ludwig. "You made that thing."
"Yes, teacher."
She advances to Rubicon, her horn alight, "Aren't you supposed to be a master of your craft? What kind of idiot did my title end on?"
"Child." The knife buzzes immediately, its blade angling closer to Ludwig, "Touch my pupil and I will kill you. Is that clear?"
The light on Ludwig's horn only becomes brighter, her eye twitching in anger.

!CammyIzMqA 2017-04-15 01:46:12 No. 29868138
>>29867148 >>29867612
"Would you calm down?" I barge in with as much authority as I can muster to hide the fact that I have no authority whatsoever here, "You are all acting like children."
"I would hear her." Sarim licks his paw.
"Says the little mortal." The knife turns to her other self, "I will be the one to decide if my pupil needs any correction, pony. Not you."
"Do you think she'd hurt him?"
"Yes, I do. I know myself." Says the knife simply.
"Come on, Lud, you wouldn't hurt him, right?" Mirria gives me an odd look when I say that.
Sarim answers for her, "I am afraid to say, my sister is not in her best frame of mind."
"It's true." He says nonchalantly.
"Fade your hornlight and step away from my pupil, right now." The knife's blade is now nearly horizontal, slowly moving into a direct shot into her head.
"What--" Rarity walks into the library from the forest outside and blinks at all of us a few times. "Dears?"
"Fade your hornlight, pony." Demands the knife again.
"I'd do what she says." Says Rarity, her tone soothing, "Lud? Please?"
"Fine." The mare's horn fades and she walks outside quickly, her head down in irritation.
Rarity gives Rubicon a look and walks closer to me, "I can't be away from you for five minutes, can't I?"
"What exactly was the 'Core problem' you mentioned?" Asks Sarim.
"I made a dream with self-awareness, my teachers." Rubicon lowers his head into a reverence again.
"I thought I had specifically prohibited that centuries ago." Says the knife severely.
"I thought we had the knowledge to do it properly this time." Answers Rubicon quietly.
"Do bury yourself deeper." Sarim gives him a look that only a cat could give. "Be my guest."
"I never thought about the dangers of making a dream without a stated purpose other than existing." Rubicon keeps talking. "It was not from my own wisdom that I realized the foolishness of this."


!CammyIzMqA 2017-04-15 01:46:43 No. 29868140
"You have always been a fool, Rubicon. But at least you are a fool who learns." She adds grudgingly.
Rubicon seems to relax from this, "To speak crudely, I had feared to find you both in a worst state. The few years since my mistake have clearly been unkind to everyone else."
"Oh, we weren't even here." Sarim goes back to licking his paw for a moment, "There was this fascinating ideological movement on a village far north of here. It had been days since our return when the element of honesty barged in so rudely for the first time." He gives me an amused sideways look.
"We've experienced worse, Rubicon." Adds Ludwig.
"Worse than the complete collapse of our order?"
"You are a dreamer of the third order for a reason. We don't like being loud about it, but..." Sarim does the closest thing to a shrug a cat can do.
"I was not aware of this, my teachers."
"The first time we had to end it. The second time, Surane themselves took care of it. The tower and us are almost the only constant."
Rarity gives me a look, her thoughts transparent to me-- 'The only constant in three consecutive failures.'
Rubicon doesn't answer this, so I speak up, "Can you really not help us with the giant?"
"The child is a creation of the dreamers, youngling." Ludwig answers for him, "It's dreamers who will take care of it."

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