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You are standing at the south end of a large, grassy field that is surrounded on three side by small houses. To the north, pink double doors stand open and beckon you inside of a three-story, circular building with dozens of windows and a red domed roof. An arched stone bridge leads east across a small river. A dirt path leads west around the southern edge of the town square. A large fountain is visible to the northwest at the far edge of the field.
A manila envelope lies at your feet.
There is a brass lantern here.
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>pick up envelope
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>>6976>pick up envelope
Opening the envelope reveals a letter.>read letter
You remove the letter from the envelope.
The letter reads:
Dear valued customer,
The Frobozz Magic Time Tunnel Travel Agency takes utmost pride in providing its customers with the best time tunnel travel adventures available anywhere in the Great Underground Empire. The Frobozz Magic Time Tunnel Travel Agency also takes utmost pride in providing its customers with the best time tunnel travel adventures available anywhere outside of the Great Underground Empire, and we ensure you will enjoy your selected time tunnel travel adventure, #461: miniature horse wonderland. As you have been informed, time tunnel travel is not without risks, to both you and the so-called 'normal' and 'expected' passage of time, and so we are obligated to remind you, "Don't do anything stupid." We value your business and hope you will consider us for your future (and past) time tunnel travel adventure needs.
The Frobozz Magic Time Tunnel Travel Agency
disclaimer: The Frobozz Magic Time Tunnel Travel Agency makes no guarantees as to the safety of time tunnel travel and assumes no liability for any actions taken in the past, future, or present or the consequences of said actions to self, others, or to the very laws of nature and the concept of being.
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"Sounds like an adventure is to be had…">put away letter>pick up brass lantern
"I wonder where this Agency is… maybe this odd building with the many windows?"
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>>6980>pick up brass lantern
Untreated wooden stairs lead up to a deck that encircles the first of three apparent levels of the wooden rotunda. Exposed support beams and perimeter columns serve to bolster the second and third exterior deck levels and stabilize a very top-heavy structure. Stained glass windows with regular patterns accent each of the 3 levels but obscure your view of anything inside. The building is capped by a red shingled dome which is itself capped by a round spire, and these together contain another two dozen or so stained glass windows. Pink double doors stand open and beckon you inside.
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>>6981>peeking through the door
"Hello? Is anybody there?"
>>6982>peek through the door
It is relatively dim inside, and you are unable to make out any details.>say "Hello? Is anybody there?"
There is no response.
>>6986>turn on the lantern
The lantern begins to glow.>peek through the door
It is relatively dim inside, and you are unable to make out any details.
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After waiting a moment for your eyes to adjust, you take in your surroundings. Light refracts down into the auditorium rotunda that doubles as the town hall from dozens of stained glass windows in the upper levels and is further softened by the many colorful banners streaming down from the rafters above. At the north end of the room, a small two-level stage is partially obscured by luxurious magenta curtains. Similar curtains accent exits at the northeast and northwest and presumably lead up to the various balcony levels. A large crystal table supporting a scale model relief map shimmers and seems to emit a glow of its own. There is a purple unicorn here carefully examining the table. A small purple dragon is furiously taking notes.
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If this doesn't interest you and/or you don't want to continue, please let me know. :) Just so you're aware, I'm thinking of turning this into an actual game including the puzzles I've drafted, but you're my first guinea pig.
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>>6991>hail the unicorn and dragon
"Excuse me… I hope I'm not disturbing you but I was looking for um…">checks letter
"… Frobozz Magic Time Tunnel Travel Agency."
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It's fun, reminds me of Zork… or one of the old fighting fantasy books!
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>>6994>hail the unicorn and dragon
The unicorn responds, "I'm sorry, but I really don't have TIME to talk with you right now. We've got some real PROBLEMS to deal with here, and I think this MAP is somehow related to it. Now if you'll excuse me…" The unicorn returns to her examination of the table and the relief standing upon it.
The dragon glares at you briefly over the parchment onto which he's scribbling before ignoring you entirely.>ask unicorn about time tunnel travel
The unicorn laughs, "Time tunnel travel isn't real! There's no evidence that it's even possible, and even if it were possible, it would be so incredibly dangerous and unpredictable that anypony would be a fool to use it! Now if you'll excuse me…" The unicorn returns to her examination of the table and the relief standing upon it.>ask unicorn about Frobozz Magic Time Tunnel Travel Agency
The unicorn takes your letter. As she reads over it, her eyes widen in shock. "What!? YOU'RE the cause of all the PROBLEMS we've been having?" she asks while pointing an accusatory hoof at you before returning to the letter. "According to this letter, you're here on a time tunnel travel vacation. I'm inclined to say that's impossible and that you're insane, except that it would partially explain the presence of the incredibly weird stuff going on."
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"Now, now… let's not jump to conclusions. I just happened to find this letter here outside and it sounded interesting. That's why I cam here to inquire about this Time Tunnel business!"
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>>6997>"Now, now… let's not jump to conclusions. I just happened to find this letter here outside and it sounded interesting. That's why I cam here to inquire about this Time Tunnel business!"
That's a verb I don't recognize.
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"They aren't obvious enough? Oh wait. I guess you wouldn't know since you're just on vacation… MAGIC has become entirely unpredictable and in most cases just doesn't work at all," the unicorn says while pointing to her horn. "Night follows day without any intervention from the PRINCESSES. The ELEMENTS OF HARMONY are missing. And it seems like the very fabric of time has been undone. Take this MAP for instance," she states while indicating the table and the relief upon it. "It shouldn't be here! YOU shouldn't be here! Maybe I shouldn't be here either. It's impossible to say. But it does seem that YOU are the reason all of this happened." The unicorn returns to her examination of the table and the relief standing upon it.
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Magic binds us together as a society, it's the thing that makes ponies' special talents truly special. All ponies can use magic in different ways, or at least we could until earlier today. Now I can't even use the simplest of levitation spells! But that's not to say magic is gone. Take this MAP for instance… There's powerful magic at work here. I just don't understand how it works yet or why some magic works while others don't. I think the ELEMENTS OF HARMONY will be necessary to restore balance to magic.
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"The ELEMENTS OF HARMONY are the most powerful magic known to ponydom. Many years ago, they were used by PRINCESS CELESTIA to defeat NIGHTMARE MOON, and they've been in the ANCIENT CASTLE OF THE ROYAL PONY SISTERS in the EVERFREE FOREST ever since. I went to the castle and found FIVE STONE ORBS that I believe to be the elements. They were too heavy for me to bring back on my own, so I returned to town to get some help, but by the time we all made it back to the castle, the orbs were gone. Legend says that when the five are present, a spark will cause the sixth element to be revealed. I didn't notice any sparks while I was in the castle." The unicorn returns to her examination of the table and the relief standing upon it.
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>>7035>Why shouldn't I be here?
"Oh believe me, it's not that we don't want you here. In fact I'm sure FLUTTERSHY would love to throw a welcome party for you. It's just that your use of time tunnel travel has altered the fabric of time in unpredictable ways. I'm not so sure that's a good thing." The unicorn returns to her examination of the table and the relief standing upon it. >Why am I reason that there is no magic?
"My guess is that the magic that brought you here is interfering with magic as we know it." The unicorn returns to her examination of the table and the relief standing upon it.
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>Who is PRINCESS CELESTIA?
PRINCESS CELESTIA is one of the two PRINCESSES OF EQUESTRIA. She was, at least until recently, responsible for maintaining celestial balance with her powerful alicorn magic and controlled the rising of the moon, stars, planets, and most of the celestial bodies that you see at night. Many years ago, she used the ELEMENTS OF HARMONY to defeat NIGHTMARE MOON.
>Who is NIGHTMARE MOON?
NIGHTMARE MOON was a Stalliongrad businessmare who, many years ago, succeeded in cornering the kumquat market. As I understand it, she secured controlling shares in several high-yield kumquat hatcheries and singlehoofedly caused a kumquat shortage that drove EQUESTRIA to the brink of ruin! Thankfully PRINCESS CELESTIA confronted NIGHTMARE MOON with the ELEMENTS OF HARMONY, which the former used to bludgeon the latter until NIGHTMARE MOON relinquished not only her shares but also her highly lucrative stock options. EQUESTRIA was saved, though it's said that NIGHTMARE MOON will one day return to exact her revenge, probably with the help of the Stalliongrad plutocracy, over which she still holds sway.
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…>Um…. "Tell me about the MAP!"
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>>7039> Tell me about the MAP!
"The map appeared this morning around the same time that the other problems started. It's a scaled relief map of EQUESTRIA but with several features that don't make any sense - like this large structure just outside of town and this crystalline area far to the north. I'm not sure why they're on the map or what they mean. These geometric sockets around the edge of the map also have me a bit confused." The unicorn returns to her examination of the table and the relief standing upon it.
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>>7041 >Tell me about the EVERFREE FOREST!
The Unicorn hands you an enchanted paperback copy of the Encyclopaedia Equestria.>consult encyclopedia about EVERFREE FOREST
The EVERFREE FOREST is an enchanted forest located east of PONYVILLE and is home to a variety of creatures that would gladly have ponies for dinner, breakfast, lunch, or even a midnight snack. (When dining with a ferocious beast, it is recommended to be on your best behavior.) The forest stands upon the site that was once referred to as EVERFREE PLAIN. The majority of Everfree Plain was purchased by the Apple Family after the foreclosure of the ANCIENT CASTLE OF THE ROYAL PONY SISTERS, but Apple attempts to both cultivate the land and convert the old castle into a bed-and-breakfast met with little success. Instead, an unsealed wild magic caused the castle to deteriorate while also fostering in the rapid growth of a temperate rainforest around the site. Vines, roots, and outgrowths appeared faster than they could be cleared by the industrious Apples. A last-ditch attempt by the Apple Family to bring the fertile plain under control was met with vegetative resentment. The Vidalia of Independence, which peeled away to reveal the many floral grievances against the Apple Family, was accurately flung into the Apple residence, sparking the Plantation War. Four months later, faced with crippling debt from the war effort, the Apples at last recognized that the Forest would remain forever free.
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"Hm… this story sounds strangely odd.">stashes the book away>What is going on at the ANCIENT CASTLE OF THE ROYAL PONY SISTERS?
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"I went to the castle and found FIVE STONE ORBS that I believe to be the ELEMENTS OF HARMONY. They were too heavy for me to bring back on my own, so I returned to town to get some help, but by the time we all made it back to the castle, the orbs were gone." The unicorn returns to her examination of the table and the relief standing upon it.
I figured you can use the book to look stuff up so you don't have to ask 'the unicorn' about everything, but it's up to you.
Maintaining internal consistency is going to be a bit of a challenge!
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"Well, thank you for all the information. Take care for now!"
>Northwest to to large fountain
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The unicorn suddenly speaks to the note-taking dragon, "Let's go, Spike. We've been staring at this MAP for hours, and we haven't made any real progress in figuring out why it's here. If we're going to deal with the problems, then we need to find the ELEMENTS OF HARMONY and figure out how to use them."
The unicorn turns to you and says, "Look. I know you didn't mean to cause any problems, but your use of TIME TUNNEL TRAVEL has done just that. There's no telling how much damage you've caused already! I'd tell you to sit here and not touch anything, but I'm not sure how to fix the situation on my own, and since the ELEMENTS OF HARMONY are missing, the more ponies we have looking for clues the better. If you find anything interesting, come find me right away. I'll most likely be in the PONYVILLE LIBRARY on the west end of town."
The unicorn and dragon walk outside and disappear from view.
You are standing in front of an impressive pink granite fountain that serves as a popular meeting spot for ponies at the west end of a large, grassy field. Among the row of houses that border this side of the field, one particular house catches your eye - a house decorated in gingerbread style with frosting and cupcake accents stands with its door open to the northwest. A dirt path leads north and south along the western edge of the field. A large three-story circular building with a red domed roof is visible to the southeast. Brightly-colored tents sway in the gentle breeze to the northeast. A wide avenue leads west through a row of houses.
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>>7048>turn off lamp
You are standing in middle of a cluster of brightly colored tents and booths that comprise the Ponyville market district. Tents sway gently, and various flags and banners attached to the corners of the tents flutter in the light breeze. A gruff-looking brown earth pony stares at you suspiciously from behind his produce stall, the only shop that appears to be open. To the northeast towers a combination wind-and-water-mill. Neither the mill's sails nor the water wheel appear to be turning. A dirt path leads west along the northern edge of the field. A large fountain is visible to the southwest. The back side of a large three-story circular building with a red domed roof is visible to the south. A stone path leads north along the edge of the river.
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"Are you just going to stand there and stare, or are you going to buy something?"
Several bins are visible behind the shopkeeper, with each bin containing a different type of produce - broccoli, lettuce, oranges, kumquats, the Coconut of Quendor, green olives, white grapes, and tomatillos.
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You are carrying:
A manila envelope
A brass lantern
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"Sorry, Sir… looks like I am out of funds. Goodbye!">head west along the dirt path
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You are standing at the northwest corner of a large field in front of a sloped building that is covered by an ornate checkered teal canvas canopy. A sign to the northeast, hanging above the front door awning, indicates that this building is the La-Ti-Da Spa. A dirt path leads east along the edge of the field toward brightly-colored tents which sway in the gentle breeze. The path bends south from here and leads toward a large fountain. Unmarked streets lead west and northwest through rows of houses.
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You are standing in the middle of a lavish spa which provides standard spa services including mud baths, seaweed bath wraps, horn filing, massages, mane styling, and of course hooficures. There is a large bathing pool here. There are several personal mud baths, bathtubs, massage tables, and lounges distributed around the edge of the room. An azure earth pony looks expectantly at you from behind a counter near the front door. A door marked "sauna" leads east.
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>>7059>hails the spa pony
"Good day to you!"