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Giovenith
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Left-wing Utopia

Postby Giovenith » Mon Sep 16, 2019 10:23 pm

Island

Sallow laughed slightly into his hoof, and Ms. Prism always looked jovial, as they bounced ahead on the sand.

"It's a bit complicated," the paper pony said. "But just follow us."

They lead her shortly ahead to a thin grouping of tropical trees. Ms. Prism went on, walking behind tree, and seeming to disappear into the space behind it, not emerging on the other half of the tree. Before she could have second thoughts, Sallow pushed Samantha ahead into the space, where reality seemed to flicker and fold before they found themselves on the other side.

It was the beach, and yet not the beach. More specifically, it was a hyper-detailed, hyper-shaded drawing of the beach on top of a wide void, not quite 3D it not 2D either, like scratchy lines resting in midair. That was the main part. But further ahead the location differed, as the white slowly faded into color and true 3D, and formed the bright, colorful, musical noise of a large island carnival held in the distance. The ferris wheel glowed against a twilight lit sky, striped tends rose beneath it, and warm, buttery smells wafted. The whole display looked like someone had oddly photoshopped a live photo into the sketch, only if photos could, you know, be real, touchable places.

"Come on!" Sallow tugged. "Come meet our friends!"
❃she's ripping wings off of butterflies❃

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Zarkenis Ultima
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Founded: Feb 22, 2011
Democratic Socialists

Postby Zarkenis Ultima » Mon Sep 16, 2019 10:57 pm

Giovenith wrote:---
Fvaarniimar wrote:---


Lyra's energetic demeanor took Meri by surprise yet again as the woman found herself struggling to keep up with her new friend, tugged along by an invisible force as she followed in the pony's footsteps. Thankfully, the ponies' place was not too far away, and the two humans did not have to endure being pulled on for long before arriving. The Kemetian found herself looking over the pony-sized cottage with keen, curious eyes - the architecture, furniture and accessories around her were not so old that she would recognize them from her previous life, but neither were they modern enough that she would recognize them from the time she had spent in the Building, which meant they were new and fascinating. Some more than others, of course, and her attention was currently focused on the gramophone at the center of the living room.

"Huh?" The woman was surprised when Lyra shot off towards the stairs, missing what she'd said while amidst her self-absorbed analysis. But she did catch the question about food. She had little to add after Rmwtyliin's helpful response, but spoke up nonetheless.

"Oh, yes, pastries of any sort should be fine, I think we're on the same page there. We like fruits and vegetables as well." She stated. She briefly thought of mentioning meat, but one of the few things she had learned about horses was that they were strict herbivores, so she wasn't sure how a carnivore might be received in a society of sentient horses. Best not to push my luck there.

"Perhaps there's something in particular you had in mind? If you tell us what snacks you have planned, we could easily give our opinion on them."
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Northwest Slobovia
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Anarchy

Postby Northwest Slobovia » Tue Sep 17, 2019 6:17 pm

Weather Factory, Cloudsdale, Equestria

Sandy's expression held a curious mix of wonder and careful analysis, as though he was mentally critiquing a miracle for technical merit and artistic expression. Which, if Nick were to deepen his telepathic link with Sandy, he'd find that that wasn't far off, although Sandy had already given the Equestrians a 10 for artistic expression, and his technical analysis was mixed with a lot of “how are they doing that??”. Amanda, by contrast, seemed unabashedly taken by everything about the factory, from the architecture to the weather it made.

Giovenith wrote:Willow made sure to nudge everyone close to the middle of the elevated road as they walked forward, not wanting anyone to fall off and go plummeting into one of the lower levels or straight to the ground.

The second time Willow came by to herd her along the straight and narrow, she deftly dodged him, showing him a mischievous grin. “I'm perfectly safe here, Willow. I doubt I can fall off, and if I jump, I might even stick the landing.”

“And I'll spend the next two days putting your legs back together, dear.” Sandy gave his head a slow, sad shake. “Don't get too used to that; once we start the tour, I'm going to let it dissipate.” Amanda looked hurt. “It's a cell phone going off during Handel's Messiah.” He seemed to stare though one of the more airy factory buildings. “No... the 'Ode to Joy': a... secular work, though with the same sort of religious feeling – sense of religious expression.”

Giovenith wrote:Pouring out from over crevices in the lower levels were what appeared to be (to Giovenith's utter delight) glowing, liquefied rainbows.

Amanda caught the light in her eyes before Sandy did, and she turned to him. “Are they really rainbows?”

A rapid shake of his head. “Too far to tell like this. And they may have substance to them... uh, not just light, not like my--” He broke into a crooked smile, and held out his hand. It took him a few tries to get a tiny skyrocket to leave his palm in an arcing trail, and a couple more to get two at once. But with a bit of practice, he managed to launch seven in succession, forming a miniature rainbow. He grinned like a kid with a new toy for a moment, then abruptly dropped his hands. “Doodles compared to Michelangelo.”

Giovenith wrote:"Giovenith?" he asked. "Maybe you could..."

"Already on it!" […] The godling had produced three raincoats from her pockets, one for her and two for the Belas, along with three hard hats.
[/quote]
Amanda looked at the hat and coat with distracted interest: Giovenith's hammerspace pocket was more like it. “If I could get a purse like that, it would be worth carrying.”

Sandy gave his set a cockeyed look, before raising his eyes to Giovenith. “This will work for a little while, but I'll need something much larger for most of the tour.”

Amanda shot back a barely audible, “Talk about cell phones going off...”, earning a dirty look in return.

Sandy's reply was just as soft, and in Greek to boot. “You know it doesn't work that way: I don't hear it unless I concentrate on it.”
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Giovenith
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Left-wing Utopia

Postby Giovenith » Wed Sep 18, 2019 4:09 pm

Weather Factory

"I can ask my mom to make you one," Giovenith told Amanda absently, concentrating on putting the finishing touches on the tiny tailored rain coat and hat for Nick. She gently set him down, folded her hands, and awed at the cuteness she had accomplished in only a few minutes.

"I guess it'll be fine if you make sure to do it in the right places, Sandy," said Willow. He turned back to the suited mare, who had come back to hand him his own coat and hat. He nodded with a smile, and exchanged his card for a ticket for each of them.

The mare went back up to the front and grabbed the attention of the small, coated crowd with a throat clear. "Alright everypony, we're about to begin. Please remember to stay with the group, keep your hooves to yourself unless given permission, don't run, raise a wing if you have a question, photos are encouraged..." All common sense tour guide instructions.

Giovenith adjusted her hard hat before whispering to Willow. "Willow, are you sure you're okay with the tour? I'd think you wouldn't want to keep your family waiting..."

He shook his head. "It's fine. I still need a little time to prepare, actually."

"Are you sure-sure?" She folded her hands again, this time in anxiety. "I mean, what if they're not home, or they leave? Or they left because you're gone?"

Willow shook his head again, this time more confidently. "No, they'll still be there. It's the solstice." He started to put on the coat and hat. "My dad always believed it's important to celebrate the holidays, because they teach us that being happy is something we have to practice at, not something that just comes automatically." He finished buttoning up the coat. "I'm sure they'd need the extra practice."

Giovenith nodded, understanding. "He sounds smart. What about your mama?"

"My mom never shows weakness."

Giovenith could relate to that.

The large double doors into the factory opened, and the tour group was herded in. They entered into a long, fancy, white hallway decorated with large, framed pictures, each depicting a step in the history of weather making. The guide stopped at the first picture, which was of a relief of stylized equine figures on a large plain of squiggles and mounds.

"For as long as recorded history, ponykind has been connected," the guide explained in a genial yet formal tone. "Like three sides of a triangle, the three tribes depended on one another for continued existence. While the Earth ponies were the custodians of the Earth and its resources, and the unicorns kept the secrets of the heavenly bodies that warmed the Earth, the pegasi were the stewards of the life giving nourishment of the rain and seasons."

The guide flew upward to point to a series of rounded squiggles in the upper corner of the relief.

"Back in ancient times, pegasus ponies didn't have big fancy machines to help make the weather," she explained. "They only had their own natural abilities, and so they had to work twice as hard to do what we do today. This was partly why in the Old Country, pegasi developed a very strict and regimented culture, in order to make sure that everypony was doing their part and doing it correctly. Every living thing depends on water, and even the smallest slip up or irresponsibility could have wide consequences, which was something nopony wanted to deal back before the tribes united..."

Willow suddenly felt like his chest was growing heavy, and his vision seemed to narrow in on the primitve, minimalist depiction of a cloud city that the guide was pointing to. A wave of mixed feelings hit him. He blinked hard once and shook his head to bring himself back to reality. "You're talking about Cynisca, right?" he asked with a strained wistfullness, folding his ears with a forced smile.

The tour guide paused, and ponies in the group - which was mostly composed of bored looking parents and their young foals (who were apparently getting more enjoyment out of gawking at the present humans, and a few gleefully eyeing Nick), along with a few half-hearted young adults who had come to kill time before their nighttime bashes - turned to stare at him.

Willow blinked, a bit uncertain. "The old cloud city, in the Old Country."

The guide smiled politely, albeit with a bit of confusion. "Oh, well, we don't actually know what its name really was," she said, tapping the cloudy drawing. "Or much at all about the Old Country before the emigration. Remember that ponies had to leave quickly, and they couldn't bring a whole lot with them, so a lot was lost in the transition. Not to mention it was so long ago."

"O-Oh." Now that he recalled, Willow couldn't remember ever hearing Cynsica's name before his... misadventure, nor any of the other tribes'. He'd occasionally heard it called 'Pegasopolis,' but that was what Commander Hurricane had been going to name Equestria (at least according to the play, which he wasn't sure how much of he could believe anymore). He supposed he'd simply never considered it before, that that old, forgotten place actually once had names attached to it. Never really considered that it had once been a real place at all, with real ponies, real lives. All that was left of all that was now was a few squiggles on a plaster picture. He looked up at the depiction, sadly.

The guide looked at the humans a moment. "Maybe I should explain the context for..."

This elicited impatient groans and objections from the rest of the group, who were all already hopelessly familiar with Equestria's founding and just wanted to see the rainbows and clouds being made. Taking the hint, the guide moved on to the next picture, which was an old painting of a small cluster of cloud structures above a wild, untouched looking valley. In the background were the purple mountains the Residents had seen while flying, only there was no sign of a city anywhere in them.

"Anyway, after the unification, the weather base was one of the first things that needed to be built," she explained, regaining her upbeat tour tone. "Before anything else in Cloudsdale, even proper homes, so that the first Equestrians could begin starting the cycle of life in the new land. This little base is what would eventually grow to be our very own weather factory. Isn't that interesting, that where you're standing now was one of the very first spots your ancestors established in Equestria?"

The group stared at her, largely blankly.

"When do we get to see the snowflakes?" somepony demanded.

The guide restrained a sigh. "Soon. Anyway, it was then-Private Pansy's idea to build the new city over the valley. That's why we're called Cloudsdale, dale meaning valley. She thought it would better to have the new city in the open, closer to the other tribes, to help with the new harmony."

"Somehow I really doubt that," a young mare whispered to her friend, which caused them to both snicker.

Willow felt himself seethe at that, in both rage and overwhelming sadness. He wanted to swoop over, point, and yell at them, She was a hero! Get it?! A hero! She saved my life, she saved all of our lives! But that would have only made him look insane, or zealous. Besides, he couldn't blame them, they only knew what they had been taught. It was the same as he once thought, before he met the truth.

The guide guided the group forward, detailing more about the steps in weather advancement. Willow held back, sadly staring at the little winged figure at the bottom of the valley in the painting. Giovenith went to him.

"Willow..." she said, pulling back his attention. She gave him a sad, knowing look, before embracing him in a hug. Then she lead him onward.
❃she's ripping wings off of butterflies❃

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Giovenith
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Left-wing Utopia

Postby Giovenith » Wed Sep 18, 2019 5:49 pm

Ponyville

Bon Bon nodded along. "We have visitors from outside Equestria sometimes, so we understand that non-ponies usually can eat anything but grass-based stuff."

Changelings, however, were a different story. And if these two proved to be too suspicious, Bon Bon was grateful to have been able to lure them here where she could take them out without making a scene. She really didn't feel like spending her holiday hunting down ponies to memory-wipe. She just had to check.

"I have some baked goods I made myself," she pointed out a few covered dishes on the table. "Why don't you try them, see if you like it?"

She opened up a dish to reveal cherry strudels. They wafted deliciously in the air, still warm. Bon Bon kept an unflinching friendly expression. There was nothing wrong with said strudels, the goal was to see whether or not the two could, in fact, eat them. That was the test...

"I'm back!" Lyra barged back in, moving between the guests and the strudels.

"Lyra!" Bon Bon hissed.

"Look at my collection!" said Lyra, levitating several objects in the air and gently showing them to her guests. "They're hyoo-muns things!"

Indeed, they were, shockingly enough. Specifically, there was a five-fingered glove, a home telephone from about the 1940s, a desk fan, and a Rosie the Riveted poster. They all looked old and worn.

"Do you like them?!"
❃she's ripping wings off of butterflies❃

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Zarkenis Ultima
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Founded: Feb 22, 2011
Democratic Socialists

Postby Zarkenis Ultima » Fri Sep 20, 2019 4:42 pm

Giovenith wrote:---


Hearing that they weren't the only non-ponies to have visited Equestria made Meri feel relieved. No wonder he thought to ask us about our dietary needs first. She thought. Perhaps they were even accustomed to meat eaters? Though she felt that it wasn't prudent to bring that up regardless - better that than finding out the wrong way that her suspicions were off the mark.

As Bon-Bon offered a taste of his strudels to her two human guests, the Kemetian looked them over with mild curiosity. She wasn't familiar with that type of crust, but the cherry filling's scent was easily recognizable, not to mention tempting. 'Are you sure we can try these before your guests arrive?' were the words she wanted to say to the cream-colored pony, but just as she turned to look at her, Lyra returned from upstairs with a small collection of objects she claimed once belonged to humans, or at least were of human manufacture.

"Oh, these are great for the colder seasons, helps keep your hands from freezing over." Meri spoke, quickly moving on from the topic of pastries to observe Lyra's collection. After glancing between the lime green pony's hooves and the glove, she corrected herself. "Erm, my hands."

The other three objects, however, had her quite puzzled. The time she was originally from was thousands of years apart from when Rosie the Riveter existed, for one, and while she had seen telephones before, the ones available at the Building were of a more modern kind, fairly distinct from the rotary one in front of her.

"I have to say, though, I have no idea what the rest of this-" She began to admit, but as her eyes fell on the fan, she recognized its shape. "Oh, these are for cooling, right?"
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Northwest Slobovia
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Founded: Sep 16, 2006
Anarchy

Postby Northwest Slobovia » Mon Sep 23, 2019 7:12 pm

Weather Factory, Cloudsdale, Equestria

Giovenith wrote:"I can ask my mom to make you one," Giovenith told Amanda absently,

“Thank you, but I’d like to think about the implications of that offer before accepting.” The Prick is bad enough as it is; I’m not sure I need any connection to another greater being.

Giovenith wrote:"I guess it'll be fine if you make sure to do it in the right places, Sandy," said Willow.

Sandy gave him an uncertain nod as he put on the slipped on the coat and donned the hard hat.

Giovenith wrote:The mare went back up to the front and grabbed the attention of the small, coated crowd with a throat clear. "Alright everypony, we're about to begin. Please remember to stay with the group, keep your hooves to yourself unless given permission, don't run, raise a wing if you have a question, photos are encouraged..."

At ‘raise a wing’, Amanda’s eyes started to rake the crowd, examining each member in turn. She turned to Sandy, whispering in French. “All of them are pegasai. It does seem that some animals are more equal than others.”

Sandy tore his vision away from the pictures and looked over the group. He replied, “So it seems”, in hushed Koine Greek.

“No dirty look?”

A trace of shaken head. “No, it’s an important cultural observation. Their perceptions of or aspirations for their society don’t match its situation.”

Amanda looked at him in surprise: that wasn’t what she expected, but she continued whispering in French rather than saying so. “Look at their cameras! I wonder if they have color film. For that matter, I wouldn’t mind if I could take some photos, but I see you have the fish.”

He leaned in close to her, lowering his voice further. “Right! Speaking of which...”. Sandy removed the holocam from his shirt and pinned it on Amanda’s sundress, just above the embroidery. “Might miss something when I transform. And your phone is in your purse, next to the other thing. Even if they recognized it, they don’t know the passcode, and hooves won’t work on a screen meant for fingers. They’ll just brick it if they try to unlock it.”

“Oh, that’s why it seemed so heavy!” They returned to listening to the canned lecture.

Giovenith wrote:"You're talking about Cynisca, right?" he asked with a strained wistfullness, folding his ears with a forced smile. [...]Willow blinked, a bit uncertain. "The old cloud city, in the Old Country."

The guide smiled politely, albeit with a bit of confusion. "Oh, well, we don't actually know what its name really was," she said, tapping the cloudy drawing. "Or much at all about the Old Country before the emigration.”

Sandy gave Willow an sidelong glance when he mentioned the city’s name, and added a raised eyebrow when the guide confirmed it was lost. Did he and Sterling get their hooves on a cache of old documents? Or did he also take a dip in the river of time? He returned to looking at the pictures, certain that the holocam was getting more detail than he was. The guide’s explanation relative to Amanda’s observation brought up questions about the historiography, or rather hagiography, of the ‘official’ account: perhaps Equestrian history was as bloody as human history, and has been even more greatly revised in the popular mind.

Amanda, meanwhile, gave the rest of the group their first look at her courtroom face: her neutral mask was now punctuated by her piercing gaze, seeming to glean meaning from whatever tells Willow had. His slip, mentioning something nobody should know, was often the difference between justice delivered and justice denied. She took her eyes off him for just a moment, to glance at her husband. She got back only a tiny shrug and a mumbled Greek. “Hard to say.”


Giovenith wrote:The guide guided the group forward, detailing more about the steps in weather advancement. Willow held back, sadly staring at the little winged figure at the bottom of the valley in the painting. Giovenith went to him.

"Willow..." she said, pulling back his attention. She gave him a sad, knowing look, before embracing him in a hug. Then she lead him onward.

That little scene was impossible to miss, and it settled the matter for Sandy. He switched back to English as he took the few steps toward Willow and quietly and gently addressed him. “You were there, weren’t you?” He cocked his chin towards the picture. “It... Didn’t go as the guide said?” The question was entirely pro forma: Willow’s expression already told him it didn’t. The only question was how badly it went.
Gollum died for your sins.
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Monfrox
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Founded: Mar 25, 2011
Father Knows Best State

Postby Monfrox » Thu Sep 26, 2019 11:18 pm

"Wah!"

Samantha didn't have anything more to say before she was literally shoved into another world. It was...quaint. Odd, but quaint. They atmosphere was light and artsy, almost. She didn't know what to make of it, really. She looked around until Sallow tugged at her shirt. Well, she was here and it didn't seem dangerous yet, so why not. Trust was not an easy thing, but it warming people up has progress. Samantha followed along at her own pace, taking the scenery in.
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Giovenith
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Founded: Feb 08, 2012
Left-wing Utopia

Postby Giovenith » Sun Sep 29, 2019 10:23 pm

Cloudsdale

The guide wrapped up the basic history of weather making as she lead the group to a second set of doors at the end of the hall. Willow nudged Giovenith ahead before tightening his expression into something more collected for Sandy. He breathed in, then slowly breathed out.

"It did, more or less," he said, quietly. "It's just... more complicated."

The doors opened up and the tour group was finally lead in the factory proper. They spilled into a large and spacious warehouse filled with the loud working of machines, which dominated most of the floor aside from the middle walkway that the guests were allowed to walk across. The machinery in question seemed like a complex series of large tubes and generators, taller than most everyone there, with ginormous containers of water held in the back while up front, equally huge openings stuck out openings carved out of the wall and ceilings. From those openings, flurries of white mist slowly materialized, before being pinched and carried away by unseen workers from outside. Inside, workers waved politely to the tour. A few smaller samples of clouds were indoors, being inspected on a few conveyor belts and desks for unfathomable imperfections.

Willow flopped nd rubbed at his ears with a sigh. "I'll tell you later!" he said loudly, over the machinery. It was quiet enough to talk normally, but definitely too loud to be discrete.

"All the basics of weather begin with clouds," the guide explained, gesturing to the work all around. "Clouds are the vehicles through which things like rain, snow, and hail are carried to where they're needed throughout all of Equestria. We can't make them on our own, though." She turned to face the crowd, addressing the children in particular. "Every year, a city or town is specially chosen to provide water from its reservoirs and springs to be used for all the weather made here. All of the pegasi of the spot are called upon and encouraged..."

Willow nudged Sandy and made a cynical air-quotes gesture at "encouraged" with his wingtips. Giovenith gave him a light shove as a reminder to behave.

"... to join in combining their wingpower in forming a jumbo tornado," the guide lifted her foreleg up demonstrably. "That will suck up all the water like a straw and funnel it all the way to the factory. It's a huge honor to be called to tornado duty! Your home gets to be the one to bless all of the nation with rain for a whole year, and you get to be the ones to thank for it. It's one of the few parts of the original weather making traditions left, so in a way, it also connects us with all the pegasi of the past and the future." She wagged a hoof at the foals in a friendly manner. "So remember to always stay strong and healthy no matter where you are, because you never know when it will be time to show all of Equestria what your town is made of."

The children gawked at her in that ambivalent way children did, intrigued by her words but vastly more intrigued by the various sights around them.

"Please, look around!" The guide encouraged, flouting a foreleg. This sent the tourists off in various directions to snap pictures and ask the workers questions.

Most of the adults were eager to get a better look at the weather process, relevant to many of them as it was. Many of the foals, on the other hand, had another idea: They flocked to the ape people, a few staying on the floor and a few others nimbly buzzing around in the air like tiny cherubim from some old cartoon.

"What are you?" one asked.

"Can I pet your kitty?" asked another, reaching for Nick.

"Your mane is so soft and shiny!" A boy-sounding foal tried to reach for Amanda's hair before being herself pulled back by his mother.

"Junior!" the mare snapped, pulling the chastised foal back next to her. "We do not touch strangers without asking." She smiled at Amanda apologetically. "Oh, I'm so sorry, you know how kids can be..."

Ponyville

Lyra chuckled. "I think so. I like the way your hand singles in the octopus PJs!"

Bon Bon kept her cool, though she was growing more impatient with her roommate. She reached for a strudel and held it up again with a smile. "Strudel...?"

"Oh sure, thanks Bon!" Lyra said, snatching said strudels with her magic and chomping down on it with delight.

Bon Bon screamed internally.

Before she could grab another one though, there was another knock on the door. Whoever it was decided to let themselves in without waiting for a response.

"We're heeeeere!" Another Earth pony, this one also creamy-colored but with a red and dark pink mane, poked her head in. "Sorry we're early, but word o the street was that you had special visitoooooors!"

Lyra waved to the guest happily. "Hey Roseluck, come on in! These hyoo-muns are great!"

Crap! CRAP! The last thing Bon Bon needed was more civvies here in potential harm's way. She bolted over and tried to block the newcomers' way. "Actually, uh, Rosie, we're not quite finished with the decorations yet-"

Roseluck pfffft'd and shoved her friend aside. "It'll be fine, we'll help you set up."

"We?!"

There were a few more cheers behind her.
Last edited by Giovenith on Mon Sep 30, 2019 10:18 pm, edited 1 time in total.
❃she's ripping wings off of butterflies❃

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Giovenith
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Founded: Feb 08, 2012
Left-wing Utopia

Postby Giovenith » Thu Oct 03, 2019 10:48 pm

Island

Ms. Prism and Sallow lead Samantha to a table near what appeared to be an abandoned game stand. Several prize toys hung from the small roof of the set up, seemingly normal, but upon closer inspection, were all modeled after the various residents. Raggedy doll, button-eyed versions of everyone, with a few dressed in silly outfits.

Ms. Prism materialized uncomfortably close to Samantha, holding a doll version of herself (or perhaps Gio) dressed as a princess wielding a tiny poleaxe.

Sallow laughed, cheerfully. "Aren't they cute? Ms. Prism and I have been trying to collect them all! Look..." He pointed. "There's one of you!"

Indeed there was. There among the bunch was a doll version of Samantha, hand-stitched and dressed in an exact felt replica of her uniform.

"All you have to do is shoot down those cans with this BB gun," Sallow explained, pointing out the game set up.
❃she's ripping wings off of butterflies❃

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Zarkenis Ultima
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Founded: Feb 22, 2011
Democratic Socialists

Postby Zarkenis Ultima » Mon Oct 14, 2019 11:45 pm

Giovenith wrote:---


Meritari chuckled at Lyra and Bon Bon's antics, but soon enough her attention was brought to the door, as another pony knocked - was it really a knock if they were using hooves and not knuckles? - and then let herself into the house, much to Lyra's delight and Bon Bon's chagrin. The Kemetian smiled at the opposite reactions and looked over the newcomer, a pony with a striking rosy mane. Feeling some measure of embarrassment in the face of Lyra and Roseluck's compliments to her and Rmwtyliin, and another dose of self-consciousness upon learning that Roseluck had brought plenty of friends along, the Kemetian nonetheless made her way to the rosy-maned pony.

"Hello there. My name is Meritari, I come from a place called Kemet." She stated, smiling at Roseluck as she introduced herself and then gesturing towards Rmw. "This is Rmwtyliin, she's from a different land, but we've been neighbors for a while." she explained. "You're Roseluck, yes? How about your friends?"
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Monfrox
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Father Knows Best State

Postby Monfrox » Tue Oct 15, 2019 1:42 am

"I...I haven't held a rifle...s-since training..."

It was true, for the most part. She was more a cop than a soldier at her point in life. Her go-to gun was a easily concealable pistol, and her uniform was more a loose dress code of professional looking garments. Only her dress uniform was official, and she wasn't in that at the moment. But then again, it was a BB gun in a carnival game. She pumped the foreend and steadied herself. These were much lighter than the HS Produkt VHS-2s she had handled, or the FB Beryls. She looked at at the two (Ms. Prism was still making her a little on edge) and asked,

"So...wh-what do I do?"
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Northwest Slobovia
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Postby Northwest Slobovia » Thu Oct 17, 2019 6:46 pm

Weather Factory, Cloudsdale, Equestria

Giovenith wrote:[The guide] turned to face the crowd, addressing the children in particular. "Every year, a city or town is specially chosen to provide water from its reservoirs and springs to be used for all the weather made here. All of the pegasi of the spot are called upon and encouraged..."

Willow nudged Sandy and made a cynical air-quotes gesture at "encouraged" with his wingtips. Giovenith gave him a light shove as a reminder to behave.

Sandy replied with an uncertain nod: Willow's reaction seemed quite changed from defending the status quo against Amanda's charges. Perhaps being reminded of how his society got where it is made all the difference; perhaps it was just easier to admit problems when nobody is forcing you to; perhaps, even, Willow was just tacitly acknowledging Amanda had a point without explicitly saying so.

He sighed, though the sounds of the factory doubtless covered it: the system being described was odd, and he wished he could ask Willow about it. It seemed an unusual kind of hydraulic empire: a corvée gathered the water everybody depended on under central control, putting the 'donors' at the mercy of the center. Even knowing it was a relict tradition of a 'regimented' society only explained part of it: why did they still put up with it? Maybe that was something he could ask without giving offense. But who to ask? The tour guide? Unlikely. Hmm...

Amanda caught Sandy's eye; she flashed him a gleeful smile, which he understood all too well. She'd found another child locked in the dungeon of this utopia, and was saving it up for an excuse to point it out. Her smile vanished as fast as it appeared: she could wait for the opening.

Giovenith wrote:"Please, look around!" […] Most of the adults were eager to get a better look at the weather process, relevant to many of them as it was.

Sandy was one of them, though his interest was purely the how of weather manufacture and control, not yet necessarily the consequences of it. Even to his muted Sight and Hearing, he could tell that the pegasoi were exercising fine control over a huge amount of ousia. He started towards the closest work area, but he didn't get far.

Giovenith wrote:Many of the foals [...] flocked to the ape people, a few staying on the floor and a few others nimbly buzzing around in the air like tiny cherubim from some old cartoon. "What are you?" one asked.

A big smile lit Sandy's face, all deeper thoughts forgotten: they were cute kids, inquisitive and unselfconscious. "We're humans."

Giovenith wrote:"Can I pet your kitty?" asked another, reaching for Nick.

"Uhhh, you should ask him first." Sandy's grin showed mystery. "He's not just a kitty."

"Your mane is so soft and shiny!" A boy-sounding foal tried to reach for Amanda's hair before being herself pulled back by his mother.

"Junior!" the mare snapped, pulling the chastised foal back next to her. "We do not touch strangers without asking." She smiled at Amanda apologetically. "Oh, I'm so sorry, you know how kids can be..."

Amanda was the picture of politeness and grace, smiling and unperturbed. "Oh yes, yes I do." Which is why I leave them to Sandy. But she turned to the colt with the same easy grace. "If you ask nicely, I'll let you."

Junior looked to his mother excitedly, who considered skeptically.

"Well, if you say so-" She ventured, holding a hoof to her chin.

"Can I pleeeeeeeaaaase?" the child pleaded, bugging his eyes out brightly.

Amanda continued her polite guest routine. “Yes, you may. But be gentle. Despite your size, you’re pretty strong compared to us.”

One of the foals circled Sandy. "I've never heard of hyoo-muns. I met a griffon at flight camp once." She smiled and clapped her hooves. "Will you come look at the clouds with me, please?"

“Sure.” Sandy beamed back at her. “I came to look at how you guys make the weather.

“It’s OK that you’ve never heard of us. Until we met Willow, we’d never heard of you guys either.”

The little boy beamed as he flew up and, gently as he could, ran a hoof along Amanda's pretty golden locks. Thrilled and embarrassed at once, he zipped away soon after to hide shyly behind his mother. "Thank you!" he peeped.

“You’re welcome!” Amanda’s smile changed from polite to charmed. OK, that was cute. But I still don’t know how Sandy does it.
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Postby Giovenith » Thu Oct 17, 2019 6:53 pm

Willow and Giovenith exchanged looks. She was delighted at the cuteness of the children, tinier versions of the already adorable ponies she knew and loved. He was more content, not generally a fan of children, but not averse to them if they managed to behave themselves.

"You are too kind, miss," the mother smiled at Amanda. "What's your name? Are you from a land very far away?"

Amanda’s eyes refocused on the woman’s, er, mare’s face, still charmed by her cute kid. “Amanda. Yes, we’re from a great distance away.”

"That explains a lot," the mother nodded, smiling. "Uh-man-duh? That's an unusual name. But very pretty. I'd have thought it was a griffon name if it began with a G."

"It means 'loveable,'" Giovenith piped in, equally taken by the shy child and his mommy.

Said child brightened with thought, then tugged at his mother to whisper something in her ear.

"Ask her yourself, dear," she commanded, gently.

Still timid but fascinated, the little foal nudged his way in between his mother's foreleg to look up at Amanda again. "Do you, are you friends with, um, you going to the show? With the princess?"

Sighing, the mother decided to translate. "He wanted to know if you were going to be with Princess Mi Amore Cadenza at an art show in Canterlot we're going to tomorrow." She gave an expression that said she already knew the question was a nonsensical one.

"Princess... Mi Amore Cadenza?" Giovenith asked. Willow had never mentioned that one to her. Mostly Celestia, occasionally a Luna, and recently Twilight. Never a big fancy name like that though. "Who is that?"

The mother ruffled her wings in sudden alertness. "Well, she's one of the alicorns, of course! She's the princess of love and family." She turned to Amanda. "He thought you must be friends with her because of your name." She laughed slightly at the idea.

“It’s not a bad guess. Both ‘Amanda’ and ‘Amore’ are both related to an old word for ‘love’. Our languages have been around for a long time, and have changed lot over the years. But an art show!” Amanda brightened. “We hadn’t heard, but we’ll be there! Is the show just her work, or is it a collective show?”

"Oh, it's not her art," the mare clarified. "She's stopping by to oversee it in place of Princess Celestia, who I think had some work to attend to with the unicorns' school."

"Is that the place where all the really special magicians do their work?" Giovenith asked, remembering what Willow had said when pointing out Canterlot.

"Partly. It's definitely the center of it." The mare beamed again. "It will be so nice to see Princess Mi Amore there though! She just had a baby you know, and I'm sure she's had her hooves full, but even mommies need to get out once in a while. She is so kind and beautiful, you're going to love her."

“I expect we will.” Amanda flashed a last smile. “For now, let’s take a look around. We don’t have anything like this at home, and I’d like to see what’s here.” With a wave for the others to follow her, she set off in the opposite direction from Sandy.


The girl foal clapped again and, after a permission nod from her parent, flew over to one of the bigger of the machines further down in the room. Willow followed after them, feeling that there would still be gaps needed to fill.

"You, you, you see?" the girl stuttered with excitement, gesturing to the large window of the machine. "This is where they make the cute-moo-list."

"Cumulus," Willow gently corrected, landing beside the two. "The biggest and fluffiest clouds."

The girl nodded eagerly. "They're the softest and strongest at the same time!"

Through the window, it was difficult to quite understand what was going on. The machine was connected to a water supply flowing in from the ceiling, and behind the window, a swirling mist slowly whirled round and round the chamber inside. It was slightly transparent, but thick, enough that you could see the layers of vapor but nothing more precise than that.

"I want to be a weather leader when I grow up," said the girl. "I want to make the biggest tornado ever and get all the water!" She turned to Willow. "Did you ever do a tornado?"

He nodded. "Yup."

"Was it fun?!"

"It was hard, but we did alright."

She turned to look up at Sandy. "My teacher said that other places don't make weather. It just happens all by itself. Why do you do that?"

“Well…” Kids ask the damnedest things! I suppose that’s why we learn so much from them! Sandy tried to kick his mind into overdrive, but his mind suffered from hefty turbo lag. But he was hardly the first time he’d been surprised by a student’s question, and fell back onto old tricks, though years out of the classroom made him rusty. First, repeat the lesson to buy some time: “Well, as the guide said... in the Old Times, controlling--um, making-- the weather took-- um, was very hard work… because you guys didn’t have this factory.

“It’s the same for us, and it’s harder for us, because only a very few of us work magic. I can cast spells..” He waved his right hand over his upturned left palm, shooting off a spray of foot-tall fireworks. “...but it’s a rare gift for us. And I cast spells like unicorns do.

“Since very few of us humans can control weather like pegasoi do, it would probably fall to people like me to do the work. And…” His gaze lifted from the child, and he Stared at the few nearby strands of ousia he could see, trying to Hear what the factory workers were doing. Smiling bravely, he looked back at the filly. “I’m not sure we could without something like this factory, and that would be a project that would take generations. Uh, me, my children, and probably my grandchildren. All their lives to build the weather factory we’d need.”

There! True, complete, and probably using concepts she can understand!

The sounds of the factory itself were what you would expect from a factory: repetition, sterility, rigidity. Just like the outside implied, everything was neat and clean here, everything ran smoothly. Those sounds, however, were recent additions. They were an artificial package containing the deeper, far less tidy-and-professional sounds.

Much like with Starlight in the library, the core magic was primordial and fundamentally unique. The was where the similarities ended, though. Whereas the unicorns had been fiery and brilliant, the pegasi were heavy and imposing, like a loud, low drum that shook your teeth. There was a nonstop churning and mixing, out of which flowed feelings of refreshment and satisfaction, but also a terrible underlying violence, like a giant who could at once caress you like a cherished pet but also crush your body with a flick or chuck you back and swallow you whole.

It was not evil or dark. It was the reality of the storm. The forces that brought you the gentle rain to raise your crops and feed your children also brought the merciless hurricane to smash your city and reap everything you loved. The only difference was intensity, and fortune. Back on Earth, such forces were up to chance, nature being blind and indiscriminate. In Equestria, they were stuffed into intelligent little shells deceptively shaped like hapless, doe-eyed bird-horses.

The little filly gasped at the sight of the sparkles and smiled. She had heard that other creatures had magic of course, but never imagined that monkeys were one of them. She scrunched up her face and seemed to think very hard about what Sandy had said.

"I guess sooooo..." Suddenly, she gasped in epiphany. "Do you have kids? Little kids, like me?" She sprang back and forth between her front and hind legs in excitement at the idea, running in a few circles around both Sandy and Willow before looking back and forth between the two.

Willow flicked his ears and jerked slightly, taken off guard. "Me? Oh, no, no I don't."

The filly frowned. "Why? Don't you like them?"

Not really. "Because, I'm too little myself to have kids," he awkwardly explained as best he could. It was basically true, in a lifestyle sense anyway.

She turned to beam up at Sandy, expectantly.

Fortunately, Sandy had a moment to think of an answer while she asked Willow. “Um, not yet. There’s too much to do, too much to see, where we’re from. And so much to learn and discover.” His smile could have lit the entire factory by itself. “For example, I’d like to learn a little more about how you pegasoi make the weather. So, I’m going to use another spell to be more more like you guys. I will be rather big and tall, though.” Sandy made sure to catch the glances of the nearby adults, including Willow’s, as he said it.

“I’m going to need a few seconds to cast the spell, and then we can look at the clouds together.” Sandy took a few steps back from the filly, checked that he had room, and cast Apollonius’ Fifth Transformation, ending up in his usual white, winged form. He returned the filly’s beaming, and if he caught anybody staring, he waved to them.

The filly gasped and briefly backed up close to Willow when Sandy transformed. She didn't actually know much about the changelings, but it still caught her off guard.

Willow nudged her hair slightly, comfortingly. "It's okay. It's just a magic trick."

She crept out again, and after some thought, flew all the way up to Pegasus' face. She poked his nose. "Wowee! You're a giant!" She stretched her forelegs out in amazement before flitting over to his flank. "But where's your cutie mark? You're all grown up!"

More in-depth, Pegasus would be able to tell that the clouds in current production were being infused with heavy amounts of water. They were almost ready to burst, but manageable before being sent out.

A worker flew over. "The Summer Sun Celebration always calls for a sunny day, of course. But in a few days we'll need a major downpour to make up for the dryness."

A distracted nod was Sandy’s only reply. He had barely heard him over the factory’s magic. In fact, he was only dimly aware the filly had asked him a question, even though she’d been smack in the middle of his vision a moment before. The pegasoi theme seemed Romantic, German: full of sturm und drang and barely contained violence, like much of Earth’s technology, which depended on powerful forces capable of destruction of not carefully watched. And much like the other spellcasters back home as well, he concluded.

Sandy lost himself in the details of what the workers were doing, how they were manipulating magic to “fill” the cloud in front of him with water. He stood nearly motionless, eyes closed, moving only his head and ears as he Listened to workers individually and in groups.

The filly blinked, confused. She waved a hoof in front of Sandy's face.

Willow looked over his back and caught the stares of other workers and group members, quickly ended as they were when they caught him looking back. He decided to fly up to Sandy's face himself and gently pat and shake it with his hooves.

"Sandy," he roused. "Come on, let's look at a little more before the tour moves on..."

Sandy opened his eyes, blinking, trying focus on Willow. He nodded sheepishly, wondering how long he’d been Listening to the factory’s Music. He followed along behind Willow, one alula fluttering in time with the magic’s underlying beat. The sharp-eyed might spot it, and they might also notice that his outer flight feathers rippled like a subtle player piano, as he tried to memorize the pegasoi theme.
❃she's ripping wings off of butterflies❃

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Giovenith
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Postby Giovenith » Fri Oct 18, 2019 4:22 pm

Monfrox wrote:"I...I haven't held a rifle...s-since training..."

It was true, for the most part. She was more a cop than a soldier at her point in life. Her go-to gun was a easily concealable pistol, and her uniform was more a loose dress code of professional looking garments. Only her dress uniform was official, and she wasn't in that at the moment. But then again, it was a BB gun in a carnival game. She pumped the foreend and steadied herself. These were much lighter than the HS Produkt VHS-2s she had handled, or the FB Beryls. She looked at at the two (Ms. Prism was still making her a little on edge) and asked,

"So...wh-what do I do?"


Sallow shrugged. "Beats me, I don't have hands." He held up his forelegs to demonstrate.

Shink! Ms. Prism produced two pairs of scissors, one in each hand. Faster than either Sallow or Samantha could see, she chucked them at one of the pyramids of cans, and a second later, two of said cans were embedded in the back wall of the game stand with the open blades.

"Oh! I see," Sallow nodded. "Just do that with the gun then!"

Zarkenis Ultima wrote:
Giovenith wrote:---


Meritari chuckled at Lyra and Bon Bon's antics, but soon enough her attention was brought to the door, as another pony knocked - was it really a knock if they were using hooves and not knuckles? - and then let herself into the house, much to Lyra's delight and Bon Bon's chagrin. The Kemetian smiled at the opposite reactions and looked over the newcomer, a pony with a striking rosy mane. Feeling some measure of embarrassment in the face of Lyra and Roseluck's compliments to her and Rmwtyliin, and another dose of self-consciousness upon learning that Roseluck had brought plenty of friends along, the Kemetian nonetheless made her way to the rosy-maned pony.

"Hello there. My name is Meritari, I come from a place called Kemet." She stated, smiling at Roseluck as she introduced herself and then gesturing towards Rmw. "This is Rmwtyliin, she's from a different land, but we've been neighbors for a while." she explained. "You're Roseluck, yes? How about your friends?"


Roseluck grinned at Meri.

"I saw Lyra and Bon Bon over here trying to keep you all to themselves," she said. "So I brought everypony over so we could all spend the day with our new hyoo-mun friends."

With that, there was a clambering murmur as a crowd began to shove their way into the front door and pool into the cottage, carrying party favors and refreshments with them as they did. There were cheers and friendly conversation already being set up, and someone managed to find their way to the gramophone and put the needle down on a funky party jam.

Bon Bon looked across the crowd in a panic. She flipped her head around frantically until she located Lyra, who was by then showing off her human things to their guests. The creamy Earth pony grabbed her unicorn roommate and dragged her to a corner.

"Do you realize what you've done?!" she hissed in a whisper.

"Uh, whoa Bon," Lyra lifted an eye. "Nopony cares that much about the decorations being finished, calm down-"

"Not that!" Bon Bon lowered her voice even further. "I haven't cleared these guys yet, and now if something goes wrong, they could easily escape in the crowd or even take somepony hostage."

"What re you talking about?!" Lyra widened her eyes. "They don't seem dangerous."

"Not everypony who is does, Lyra," Bon Bon shook her head. "That's why you don't wait to see if they are."

"I think that incident with the Bugbear has gone to your head." Lyra shoved her friend aside dismissively. "Not everything is a spy conspiracy, Special Agent Sweetie Drops."

"Lyra!" Bon Bon looked around frantically. She could just go around spouting her codename like that! Luckily, no one seemed to hear. But by the time Bon Bon looked back, her friend was gone. She looked frantically around again until she found Lyra gently lifting Meri and Rmw over the crowd with her magic.

"Let's hear it to our new friends!" the unicorn announced, eliciting cheers from the partygoers. Her magic set them down on the stairway, decently above the crowd. "Tell us all about your hyoo-mun country!"

The crowd cheered in agreement, demanding grand tales of far away lands.
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Postby Zarkenis Ultima » Wed Oct 23, 2019 3:15 pm

Giovenith wrote:---


Meritari could only smile at Roseluck and then watch as a small army of ponies trotted into the building and eagerly began mingling with one another - as they no doubt had been well before their arrival - while an unfamiliar tune played, strange and new but not unpleasant. The suddenly crowded environment made her feel slightly self-conscious, despite the ponies having displayed nothing but warmth and cordiality so far. Still, it was nothing quite as extreme as when she had first arrived to what became her new home, which meant she didn't find it difficult to adapt. She smiled politely at the ponies that approached her and treated them as cordially as they had treated her and Rmw.

Spying the delicious-smelling cherry strudels still sitting idle on a nearby table, the Kemetian decided she might as well go for one - the craving grew stronger, and she could always give Bon Bon her opinion on them later. But just as she was about to grab it from the plate, an unseen force suddenly lifted her off the ground. A small, near inaudible yelp escaped her, less so out of shock over her apparent levitation and more due to her realizing that the treat would elude her once more.

Quickly recovering her composure in order to avoid embarrassing herself in front of all the ponies, Meri smiled at the wave of applause and then fell silent for a moment while considering her options. There was so much to tell about old Kemet, of course! But where to begin?

"My country is located on the banks of a great river that flows through an even greater desert. We know it as Kemet, and it was born when a great king united the land of reeds to the south and the land of papyrus to the north. It's a very prosperous kingdom thanks to the river that flows through it and all the resources it brings." She stated. It wasn't the best summary, but it was the best she could come up with on short notice - it didn't help that she had never really ventured far from her home city of Tjenu until her impromptu journey to another world.

"I heard today's celebration is to honor the sun, yes? We had something very similar where I'm from. Once a year all the people went out to celebrate the sun god, Re. It was a day full of merriment." She said, fondly reminiscing of the many times she had witnessed the deity's receiving in her home. "If it's alright, I'd love to hear more about you as well. A friend told me that you enjoy sharing stories on this day."
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Giovenith
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Postby Giovenith » Fri Oct 25, 2019 1:26 pm

Weather Factory

There were a few more minutes of photos and asking the weather workers about their cloud business before the guide began to motion the group along. All of the foals returned to their parents' sides, some giving little waves to the humanoid (and feline) tourists as they did. Giovenith smiled at them.

This place is so safe and kind, she thought to herself. Not like our world. I wish everybody could live in a place like this.

As they exited the room and walked down the tour hall towards another set of tours, the guide looked up at Sandy.

"I'll, uh, need you turn back for this one," she said. "This room is a bit more sensitive. Can't have a tight space or too much gust."

They came to a door that slid up into the ceiling, and the guide hushed everyone to remain quiet as she lead them in. There was a large room filled not with machinery but small personal desks that workers were standing at, their faces pressed close to large, bracketed magnifying glasses hanging above some projects. The room was much quieter than the cloud room, filled most by the din of normal shifting and breathing, as well as the small tink-tink-tinking sound of small metal tools at work.

"This is where they make the snowflakes," the guide explained. "Or rather, the snowflake molds. These are the designs that will placed in the snow generators in order to produce the flake collection for this winter. It is a very delicate process to get all the designs just right, so please stay close and don't startle anypony."

Giovenith raised her hand. "Um, is it true that no two snowflakes are alike?" If that could be true on Earth, surely it could be true here?

The guide seemed to expect the question, and gently shook her head. "That's a very good question, but the answer is no. It's not possible for every individual real snowflake to each be different. That is a misconception stemming from the fact that no two snowflake molds are the same." She gestured to the workers. "Every year, our graphic designers create a unique collection of vectors unlike that of any of the previous years'. Each individual mold is unique, and the Weather Factory does its best to insure that each year has a completely new collection to snow down on Equestria — exceptions, of course, for unforeseen shortages, or anniversary specials.

She held up a hood and smiled. "And our collections can be yours at home too, with our Cloudsdale Collection vector albums uniquely produced and sold right here at our own gift shop at the end of the tour! Buy our definitive album for all the snowflake designs ever produced up to this year, or purchase a smaller one showcasing all the designs of a specific year's. They make great gifts for birthdays, anniversaries, cuteceñaras, and baby showers, a great way to commemorate a special year. You can also find accessories of some of our most popular and legendary designs at the shop as well."

This elicited excited exchanges among the tourists. After all, who didn't love gift shops?

Everyone was allowed, with guidance from the guide, to take turns going up to various tables to see the molds being produced. Set on the world table, they were about the size of a dinner plate so as to be easily handled, and were slowly being carved out from an apparently delicate substance with a series of bracketed needles and picks controlled by the workers moving the bases of the brackets with their hooves. It was clear that it would have been a difficult enough job getting all the finely detailed, perfectly symmetrical designs of the snowflakes just right for a unicorn or someone with hands let alone for creatures with only hooves to nudge the tools around, so the need to be quiet and calm was made apparent.

As, too, was the need to move on quickly so as not to distract the workers too much. After each was done with a brief glimpse at the process, they were directed towards the exit on the other side of the room, nearly single file.

"Did you ever think of doing something like this, Willow?" Giovenith asked her buddy, considering the abstract nature of snowflake designing. "I bet it would have fit you."

"Oh, I've got nothing but respect for the snowflake designers," Willow assured, walking with her side-by-side to the exit. "But I like focusing more on color and emotion instead of shape and technique, you know?"

Once everypony was out of the snowflake room, the group was lead on a slightly longer walk down the wide halls while the guide kept things lively with factoids, trivia, and guessing games for the children. This wrapped up as she lead the group out an opening — reminding them all to walk/fly slowly and stay together — back into the outside, sun still shining and the rumble of what sounded like flowing water in the near distance.

"We're moving on to the main draw of the factory, the rainbows," the guide explained. "It's an even larger operation than the clouds, so it's largely performed in our open air facilities. You'll be able to wander more freely here and get a view, but may I please remind you to not attempt to taste the rainbows..." She suddenly narrowed her eyes sternly. "... we don't care what that ridiculous candy company says, but rainbows do not taste like fructose corn syrup, and you'd be doing us and yourself a favor by not trying to test that." It seemed that there had been more than once instance of this issue.

The waterfall-like rumbling drew closer as they were finally lead into a huge courtyard. There were towering pillars, a smooth stone floor, and some basic framework to designate it as its own unique spot, but other than that, the area was largely open air and sky. Beyond the pillars, one could see that they had climbed up to a very tall part of the factory and the sky in general, with a view of pure blue largely unobscured by even the other cloud-based buildings in the city. There was no roof, and looking up above yielded a similar sight, with only blue and no further construction above in sight.

Within the courtyard, waterfalls of the glowing spectrums of liquid light cascaded from a place high above the group's heads, pouring into elevated pools above, which in turn poured again into lower pools, until the substance came to rest in the main pools on the floor, which rested within circular, elevated platforms and were as large as a family swimming pool. Everywhere, workers carried large, spoon-like sticks, with which they flew from pool to pool to slowly churn and mix the liquid light and keep the waterfalls flowing steady. As with any room full of falling liquid and pools, there was a slight dampness and humidity to the room — Giovenith curiously wiped a palm against her forehead, and it came away with a slight shine of wet iridescence. She looked above, and widened her eyes at some of the upper architecture, which included giant statues of tall, equine figures with both wings and horns.

"There are lots of ways to create rainbows," the guide explained, raising her voice slightly to go over the rumbling. "You could make one at home with just a reflective surface and some sunlight, and some pegasi are gifted enough to be able to perform the sonic rainboom. But in order to make the rainbows you see in the sky regularly, the huge arcs that last a while, we here condense the water, light, and magic into a unique substance which is painted across the horizon after each storm. Each rainbow you see can contain anywhere from hundreds to thousands of gallons of liquid light."

The group members scattered, excited to run around, take pictures, and ask questions. They weren't allowed to taste the rainbows, but under supervision of the workers, they could touch it — reach a hoof or handful in and watch the shifting, glowing colors pool out of your grip.
Last edited by Giovenith on Sat Oct 26, 2019 8:13 am, edited 1 time in total.
❃she's ripping wings off of butterflies❃

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Northwest Slobovia
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Postby Northwest Slobovia » Sat Oct 26, 2019 9:34 pm

Weather Factory, Cloudsdale, Equestria

Giovenith wrote:As they exited the room and walked down the tour hall towards another set of tours, the guide looked up at Sandy. "I'll, uh, need you turn back for this one," she said. "This room is a bit more sensitive. Can't have a tight space or too much gust."

Sandy flicked a hoof, and his spell collapsed, returning him to human form. It would have been interesting to Listen to their magic shift as I moved around, but...

Giovenith wrote:"This is where they make the snowflakes," the guide explained. "Or rather, the snowflake molds. […] Every year, our graphic designers create a unique collection of vectors unlike that of any of the previous years'. Each individual mold is unique, and the Weather Factory does its best to insure that each year has a completely new collection to snow down on Equestria — exceptions, of course, for unforeseen shortages, or anniversary specials.["]

Amanda raised a hand. "So it doesn't snow unless you all make it snow? Do you move natural weather around the weather you're making for the area?"

Giovenith wrote:Everyone was allowed, with guidance from the guide, to take turns going up to various tables to see the molds being produced. Set on the world table, they [...] were slowly being carved out from an apparently delicate substance with a series of bracketed needles and picks controlled by the workers moving the bases of the brackets with their hooves.

Sandy ignored the molds – they didn't Look like magic, and in any event, Amanda had the holocam – and studied how the pegasoi were making them. Copying how they used tools with hooves rather than hands would definitely come in... um, hoofy?

Giovenith wrote:Within the courtyard, waterfalls of the glowing spectrums of liquid light cascaded from a place high above the group's heads, pouring into elevated pools above, which in turn poured again into lower pools, until the substance came to rest in the main pools on the floor, which rested within circular, elevated platforms and were as large as a family swimming pool. Everywhere, workers carried large, spoon-like sticks, with which they flew from pool to pool to slowly churn and mix the liquid light and keep the waterfalls flowing steady. [...]They weren't allowed to taste the rainbows, but under supervision of the workers, they could touch it — reach a hoof or handful in and watch the shifting, glowing colors pool out of your grip.

It was easy for Sandy to convince Amanda that they should start by playing with some of the rainbow syrup, and got in line with the pegasoi. Sandy used the wait to recast the Fifth Metamorphosis. When they reached the front of the line, the pegasoi would get to watch the curious spectacle of Amanda lifting up a doubled-handful of rainbow for Sandy to drop his head and listen to with one ear just inches away from her hands.

After the syrup drained through her fingers, Sandy lifted his widely-smiling head, nodded to her, and then then backed away from the pool to get some room to spread his wings. He took off, searching for the source of the rainbows. Do they condense them directly from ousia? If not, what are they? Captured sunlight, in keeping with the Principle of Sympathy? Something like the Dawn?

Amanda watched him soar overhead, then went to look at the nearest workers stirring the light pools.

[OOC: "Principle of Sympathy" as in sympathetic magic. "Dawn", crystaline sunlight, something used in Alexandria to store ousia. Sandy has the text of a ritual to make it.]
Last edited by Northwest Slobovia on Sat Oct 26, 2019 10:45 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Fvaarniimar
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Postby Fvaarniimar » Tue Oct 29, 2019 2:11 am

Weather Factory, Cloudsdale, Equestria

As the tour entered the courtyard, Nick reopened the private channel to Willow.  Hi, Willow.  I'm sorry.  Earlier, I...just didn't know what to say.  But - remind me later.  I should tell you more about the Library, I think it's similar, and you shouldnocan - no, I can listen to your story, when/if you're comfortable.  Oh - (A flash of the Daring Do book cover.)  If you need to explain away your slip, maybe claim that the name was from a story.  It's embarrassingly easy to accidentally forget that a small detail like that is inaccurate, or to just think of something by a familiar name...

Spotting the cute-moo-list girl, Nick transferred the feeling of figuratively melting from sheer cute.  Her comment was so utterly adorable!   Anyway, rainbow bath time!  And I'll make sure to pose for the camera, afterwards...riiight,  no diving in the pools.  It looks like we just get to scoop out a bit.  That's still awesome!"

With that, the cat hopped in line behind the foal who'd previously petted him.  "I didn't catch your name?  Mine is Nick."
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Giovenith
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Left-wing Utopia

Postby Giovenith » Thu Oct 31, 2019 11:07 pm

Weather Factory

Northwest Slobovia wrote:Amanda raised a hand. "So it doesn't snow unless you all make it snow? Do you move natural weather around the weather you're making for the area?"


Amanda's question elicited a few questioning looks and exchanges from the other tourists, though they remained mostly focused on their own experience. The guide stared at her for a moment with confusion before lighting up in realization.

"Oh, that's right, you don't have a manual environment in the other lands," she remarked. "Sorry, it can be easy to forget that sometimes. But, well, no, it doesn't. Nothing here in Equestria gets done unless ponies make it get done. That's why it's so important for everything to stay in tip-top shape and on time here! It's never going to just rain on its own and feed the crops, rain-making takes hard work, as does everything else that comes out of the sky." She nodded proudly at this. "Oh, and on the land of course, everypony's work is important to making the country run."



Giovenith had made her way to the edge of the courtyard in order to see just how far the view from the top of the tallest clouds went, Willow trailing after her shortly. Leaning against a pillar to keep her steady, she looked out to see not only the rest of Cloudsdale, but miles upon miles of Equestria in many directions. Better than a skyscraper was putting it mildly, it felt as if a quarter of the world had been sliced off and set upon a stage just for her to observe. Beyond the billions and billions of trees and roads, the outlines of several far off cities poked the horizon, and not only was the once blurry Canterlot now in distant but clear view, but so too was the rest of the royal purple mountain range that cradled it in its tips. Little Ponyville below was just a smattering of colorful dots, lights, and rows in the vast green fields below.

Willow landed beside her, looking between the view and her expression. He breathed in the fresh wind. "Stranger in a strange land, huh?"

She shook her head. "We've both been in stranger places." Smiling, she knelt down to pat his head. "But we did it, we got you home just like I said we would. It's over now."

He smiled back and gently patted her hand with a wing. "Yeah, well. There's not really such thing as 'over' in life till your dead, is there? Just new things to worry about."

Giovenith tilted her head, pinching her brow in concern. "Aren't you happy to be home?"

"Of course," Willow smiled wider to reassure his friend, nudging her hand back to her. "But you know, lots of things can make me happy. Like reruns of that one soap opera on the TV, Turtleboss squeaking his toys..." He poked her in the nose with a hoof, drawing a giggle. "... making special chocolate chip pancakes for a special girl."

There were times when he struggled to be happy too, perhaps too many. He'd had trouble admitting that before, even moreso admitting that he could do anything to remedy it. But if learning to be better to himself is what made the people he loved — people like Geo-puzzle, and Brit, and Sterling, and more — happy, then maybe he could find it in him to take it on. Geo-puzzle needed him more than ever now, after all.

"I guess the point is, I'm not going to leave you," Willow explained. "I might need some time on my own to figure out where I belong here in Equestria now, with everything that's changed, but I'm still staying by you. That's a promise."

Giovenith nodded, though her eyes moistened and her smile turned strained as she did. She blinked lightly to hold back the moisture, and turned her gaze back onto the view. Willow's own smile dropped, though without any confusion as to her change in demeanor.

"How are you taking it?" he asked. "Him, and all."

She wiped a stray tear from the corner of her eye with a thumb, half-sighing and half-laughing. "You know, I was never really taught about how to deal with this. I keep looking around at the world, at the music and the TV and stuff... they all say I should be mad. Really mad, really hate him." Her gaze shifted down, false smile keeping. "But I can't make myself. Marcus isn't like those boys, he's one of the good guys. Yeah, he broke his promise, but if he stopped loving me... well, he must have had a good reason." The smile was cracking. "I just, wish he could have let me say sorry, sorry I wasn't good enough."

Willow moved closer and spread a wing behind them, shielding Giovenith's face from prying looks as she worked to dry her eyes and let out the little, pre-sobbing gasps. He didn't say anything, knowing there wasn't much he could say that could be fit into right here, right now. He couldn't speak for Marcus, nor for anything else that had hurt her, and he couldn't reassure away the deeper horrors that he knew were lurking beyond the simple heartbreak and cracked self-esteem. All he could do, for now, was prove her wrong.

He pressed his forehead against hers. "You haven't given me a good reason yet."

She sniffed, closing her eyes momentarily to block out everything except that one, thin string of hope. For now, for now, in this moment, there were a few voices that wanted her to stay. And she had to be grateful for that, by experiencing it all now and not worrying about the future.

Giovenith sighed deeply, opened her eyes, and nodded to Willow with a relaxed smile. They parted.

Willow looked over his back at the rest of the courtyard, noting where the rest of their crew had run off to. "Looks like the distinguished doctor could use some help. You think you'll hold up?"

She finished wiping the rest of any trace of tears away and nodded. "Yeah, I'll be fine," she said, still smiling. "Thank you."

"It's what we do." He nodded before flying off to meet Sandy at the rainbows' opening.


It was easy for Sandy to convince Amanda that they should start by playing with some of the rainbow syrup, and got in line with the pegasoi. Sandy used the wait to recast the Fifth Metamorphosis. When they reached the front of the line, the pegasoi would get to watch the curious spectacle of Amanda lifting up a doubled-handful of rainbow for Sandy to drop his head and listen to with one ear just inches away from her hands.


The rainbows glowed in Amanda's hands, and on the magical level, were relatively simple. Song-wise, they had a classic ethereal "ahhhhh..." to them, and radiated about everything you'd expect from rainbows: serenity, refreshment, relief from stress released. Deep inside, there were very thin, almost inaudible strands of divinity from the sunlight that helped make it.

After the syrup drained through her fingers, Sandy lifted his widely-smiling head, nodded to her, and then then backed away from the pool to get some room to spread his wings. He took off, searching for the source of the rainbows. Do they condense them directly from ousia? If not, what are they? Captured sunlight, in keeping with the Principle of Sympathy? Something like the Dawn?

Amanda watched him soar overhead, then went to look at the nearest workers stirring the light pools.


The rainbow waterfalls went up, up, ultimately originating from a thick wall that was set between two of the pillars. It poured out from a small opening, seemingly from an upward direction, but that was as close as he could get before one of the workers flew in to intervene.

"You can't go to that part," the worker said, apologetically. "Too sensitive to involve laymares, plus trade secrets."

Willow arrived, putting himself between him and the worker. "Sorry, Curious George," he said, gesturing for the jumbo-pegasus to come along back with him. "Even you can't unweave all the mysteries in one day."

The little filly lifted a hind leg in surprise as she felt Nick's soft fur touch her, even moreso when she heard his voice in her mind. She turned away from her occupied parents to marvel at him.

"You're a magic kitty?" she gasped, before grinning. "M-My name is Downy Bliss! Wow, I've never seen a magic kitty before!"

Meanwhile, one of the workers stirring the rainbows greeted Amanda with a cheerful nod as she came by. Out of their pocket, they pulled a tiny jar, no bigger than her thumb, and offered it to her.

"Would you like to take a souvenir?" the worker asked.
Last edited by Giovenith on Thu Oct 31, 2019 11:33 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Monfrox
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Postby Monfrox » Fri Nov 01, 2019 2:05 am

Well, that was mildly scary. Still, Samantha understood the game now and looked at the cans herself. Well...how hard could it be? Then she started to think about strategy. Shooting the top can was a no-go entirely. Little chance it would fall onto the rest. Shooting the lower cans could prove just as ineffective if the can was just pushed straight back. That meant the real targets were the middle cans. Well, how to do it? Aiming for the top or bottom of the can should cause the can to rock and disturb the balance of the rest of the pyramid, which was a good enough tactic as it got for a carnival game. Was she overthinking it? Probably, but she was taking it seriously.

Samantha aimed the BB gun right at the middle can and shot it near the top.
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Northwest Slobovia
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Anarchy

Postby Northwest Slobovia » Sun Nov 03, 2019 7:23 pm

Weather Factory, Cloudsdale, Equestria

Giovenith wrote:The rainbow waterfalls went up, up, ultimately originating from a thick wall that was set between two of the pillars. It poured out from a small opening, seemingly from an upward direction, but that was as close as he could get before one of the workers flew in to intervene.

"You can't go to that part," the worker said, apologetically. "Too sensitive to involve laymares, plus trade secrets."

Willow arrived, putting himself between [Sandy] and the worker. "Sorry, Curious George," he said, gesturing for the jumbo-pegasus to come along back with him. "Even you can't unweave all the mysteries in one day."

I can try! Sandy hung back for a second, Listening to the rainbow falls. Celestia's theme was stronger up here, closer to the source of the sunlight in the rainbows, but still just a single voice in the pegasoi chorus. So it is like the Dawn: ultimately condensed sunlight, though of divine rather than natural origin.

Sandy settled into an easy glide, casually following Willow down. As he turned, he caught sight of one of the alicorn statues, and headed for it, breaking his glide to flutter around it and study it. A cultic image? Just art? Since their gods are present, they don't need cultic images as foci for contacting the divine, so what are they? He Listened, on the off chance the statues were either enchanted or imbued with divine magic.

Giovenith wrote:Meanwhile, one of the workers stirring the rainbows greeted Amanda with a cheerful nod as she came by. Out of their pocket, they pulled a tiny jar, no bigger than her thumb, and offered it to her.

"Would you like to take a souvenir?" the worker asked.

"Oh, sure! It's not a problem?" Delighted, Amanda took the jar. "Is there a way to get all of the colors into the jar at once?"
Gollum died for your sins.
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Giovenith
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Left-wing Utopia

Postby Giovenith » Mon Nov 04, 2019 12:15 pm

Monfrox wrote:Well, that was mildly scary. Still, Samantha understood the game now and looked at the cans herself. Well...how hard could it be? Then she started to think about strategy. Shooting the top can was a no-go entirely. Little chance it would fall onto the rest. Shooting the lower cans could prove just as ineffective if the can was just pushed straight back. That meant the real targets were the middle cans. Well, how to do it? Aiming for the top or bottom of the can should cause the can to rock and disturb the balance of the rest of the pyramid, which was a good enough tactic as it got for a carnival game. Was she overthinking it? Probably, but she was taking it seriously.

Samantha aimed the BB gun right at the middle can and shot it near the top.


Several of the cans fell over, prompting Sallow and Ms. Prism to clap.

"You won!" Sallow cheered. He flew behind the counter, dug around in the prizes hanging below, and brought one over to Samantha. "Here you go!"

It was a rag doll replica of her, with button eyes and a wide stitched smile.

The celebration was cut short though as a loud sound suddenly cut through the air, leaving the two paper creatures suddenly frozen. It sounded like a tornado siren, with high-pitched "NnnnnnnnnnnnnyyyyaaaaAAAAOOOO!!"s sounding one after another. Ms. Prism and Sallow exchanged a look.

"Oh no..." said the paper-pony, clutching the doll close. "We need to get inside somewhere, quick!"

Zarkenis Ultima wrote:
Giovenith wrote:---


Meritari could only smile at Roseluck and then watch as a small army of ponies trotted into the building and eagerly began mingling with one another - as they no doubt had been well before their arrival - while an unfamiliar tune played, strange and new but not unpleasant. The suddenly crowded environment made her feel slightly self-conscious, despite the ponies having displayed nothing but warmth and cordiality so far. Still, it was nothing quite as extreme as when she had first arrived to what became her new home, which meant she didn't find it difficult to adapt. She smiled politely at the ponies that approached her and treated them as cordially as they had treated her and Rmw.

Spying the delicious-smelling cherry strudels still sitting idle on a nearby table, the Kemetian decided she might as well go for one - the craving grew stronger, and she could always give Bon Bon her opinion on them later. But just as she was about to grab it from the plate, an unseen force suddenly lifted her off the ground. A small, near inaudible yelp escaped her, less so out of shock over her apparent levitation and more due to her realizing that the treat would elude her once more.

Quickly recovering her composure in order to avoid embarrassing herself in front of all the ponies, Meri smiled at the wave of applause and then fell silent for a moment while considering her options. There was so much to tell about old Kemet, of course! But where to begin?

"My country is located on the banks of a great river that flows through an even greater desert. We know it as Kemet, and it was born when a great king united the land of reeds to the south and the land of papyrus to the north. It's a very prosperous kingdom thanks to the river that flows through it and all the resources it brings." She stated. It wasn't the best summary, but it was the best she could come up with on short notice - it didn't help that she had never really ventured far from her home city of Tjenu until her impromptu journey to another world.

"I heard today's celebration is to honor the sun, yes? We had something very similar where I'm from. Once a year all the people went out to celebrate the sun god, Re. It was a day full of merriment." She said, fondly reminiscing of the many times she had witnessed the deity's receiving in her home. "If it's alright, I'd love to hear more about you as well. A friend told me that you enjoy sharing stories on this day."


The guests listened intently to Meri's description of her kingdom. None of them had ever heard of it before, but then again, most of them weren't particularly well-versed in the lands beyond Equestria to begin with. They were so far away, and many of them were dangerous, so what did it matter much? A few things did intrigue them though.

"We should wait for the other hyoo-muns to come back before we tell the main story," said Lyra. "I mean, we got a puppet show planned and everything!"

"Is 'Re' your name for Princess Celestia?" Roseluck asked, perking her ears.
❃she's ripping wings off of butterflies❃

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Giovenith
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Postby Giovenith » Fri Nov 08, 2019 10:45 pm

A wind swept across the quiet beach, and without any more prelude, Ate Domenica Castañares was standing there with everything she needed to start a new life.

There were several huts there on the sand, but seemingly no other residents or events. Only the wind against the waves and the trees. It was like that for a moment, before a man dressed in formal attire appeared to her.

"Welcome, ma'am," he greeted. "Castañares? We were told that you were coming."
❃she's ripping wings off of butterflies❃

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Solisian Union
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Inoffensive Centrist Democracy

Postby Solisian Union » Fri Nov 08, 2019 10:59 pm

Waves. Winds. Sands. And a man in a really nice attire. It was one hell of a trip. And she finally was here.

Domenica blinked twice before she actually snapped out of staring at the man. "Uh," she said, "um, uh, I'm her. Yeah. I'm Domenica Castañares."

She then approached him until she was close enough to offer her hand to him and say, "I, uh, how did you know my name? And why am I here?" She looked around, trying to make sense of the place she found herself in. Everything seemed real. The beach. The silence. The huts. The trees and the waves and the winds. It really felt like a real beach. Just like the ones in Northern Mindanao. And she said to him, eager to know, eager to explore, but also worried, "I mustn't be dreaming. I could wiggle my toes and move my body freely. It doesn't seem surreal at all, unlike my dreams." She then frowned at him, adjusting her tone, trying to keep calm, but still worried.

She paused to think and then said, "Have I been...brought away from the world I live in? W-Who are you, sir?"
^_^

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