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First there was the faint cawing of seagulls, then the soft crashing of the waves and bubbling sound as they receded into the ocean. That fresh salty smell of the oceans flooded her olfactory senses as their owner slowly regained consciousness. As the three toned maned pony began to move her extremities she took notice of the grainy feeling on her hooves as the sand shifted wetly beneath her form. Soon her eyelids began to lift, exposing her bright purple irises as they scanned and acclimated to the heavy sunlight. The landscape was fuzzy at first but as she gained focus she found her presence of mind seemed to be matching her vision's clarity as it became more vivid. "Ohh... mah head..." the Ivory mare rubbed her forehooves to her temples a few times before she looked around, "A beach?" The pony pulled herself to her hooves and looked at her surroundings, in front of her was a lush and vibrant tropical forest, the calls of various birds and animals present that seemed almost musical. She looked behind her to see the ocean, waves crashing against the shore and then pulling back into the deep blue waters. On the horizon of the water, she could see what looked like a violent tropical storm drifting just out of view... "That's right. there was a storm... Ah was on a Boat..." Soon her mind drifted back to the memory of what her publicist had told her; she needed a vacation. She'd been producing a great deal of short stories so fast the printing presses weren't able to keep up and then suddenly she'd hit a bad case of writer's block. Go on a cruise in the gallopocus, she said. It'll be fun, she said. She was gonna have quite a talking to when Foxglove got out of this situation. Wiping some sand off her face and the rest of her, she looked around for her favorite accessory; Her Umbrella. She looked around and then noticed something black hanging from one of the various palm trees at the edge of the shore. She sighed, somewhat annoyed and thought to herself, "Well, at least it's close. ah'll have ta come back for it... fer now, Ah should look ta see if anypony else had luck like mine." With that she began to stroll down the beach, her hooves leaving her mark in the sands. As she walked she made sure to keep a bit of distance from the tide so the water wouldn't wash her tracks away. "Anypony Here?" she called out, her voice echoing a good ways down the coastline.
The summer air hung thickly about the crypt, in a haze of grey and dirty green, thick enough to stifle all screams. For three weeks the weather had stayed like this, as if the sky were trying to smother the earth in its bed; for three weeks the night had brought no relief, as if the moon could hold by reflection all the cruel heat of the sun. And for three weeks, Prince Blueblood had become more and more certain that he was going mad. He had taken this trip to his country house, partly out of a desire to be quit of Canterlot and its attendant cares, partly to recuperate from his first visit to Whitescar, and partly to decide what he was going to do about the great rotting heap of wood and masonry. Now, it seemed, the more relevant question was what the house would do about him. He’d arrived, expecting the normal gothic trappings of aristocratic decay; drafty windows, howling breezes, moonlight illusions of ghosts. But from the first, he could not help but feel the presence of some more subtle malevolence. He had at first attributed it to the weather, and tried to put it out of his mind. But for the past 20 nights, he had not woken up in the same place he had fallen asleep in. At first it was the wrong side of the bed, then it was the floor, then it was a different room, and now he was waking up right underneath a headstone with his name on it. The Prince let out a gasp, and then a groan. His whole body hurt, not just with the stiffness of sleeping upon the earth, but as if he had been locked in some desperate struggle all last night. He’d come in with a retinue of servants; none of whom had seen what happened to him all those nights. Some had even had similar incidents happen to them, and not a few had fled afterward, fearing some dark magic. After assuring himself that this was not his own grave, but that of one of his ancestors, Blueblood shook himself awake. “This can’t go on. Either I’m going crazy or…. Something really is happening.” With a stilted, painful gait, he wandered back into the house in search of someone he could get to call a bath. He needed to clean up… and then he was going to write some letters. *There’s got to be somepony who knows about this stuff. I’ll have my secretary to get a name of some expert in… whatever this stuff is. Supernatural, paranormal? Bloody weird, I call it. And… best see if I can’t get a few other ponies, solid sorts, to counterbalance whatever lunatic I’m recommended.* That resolution made, he began writing down a brief account of the incidents that had afflicted him since arriving. Beside the odd bouts of sleepwalking, there had been strange, five-minute blackouts experienced by… pretty much everypony that stayed a while in this house. Sudden feelings of chill and clamminess despite the heat, and the dreams! Dreams of drowning, and being trapped in a burning building, the flames spreading like water leaking into a ship, determined to drag the whole down into an unmarked tomb- He blinked. His hoof was wet, ink pooling about a stilled quill pen and an upset pot. The puddle spilled across the stationary, but it had not spread randomly. Staring back at the prince was a fanged, grinning skull, too symmetrical to be coincidental. He made to scream, but there was too great a tightness in his throat. His lungs burned under the blockage, before bursting out in a series of gasps. With dislodged heart still pounding in his skull, Blueblood sealed the letters and gathered the remains of his retinue. He didn’t care what it cost to put them all up, he was sleeping in a hotel tonight! ~***~ The hotel had at first offered relief, but as Blueblood waited for replies to his inquiries, he felt something like the same atmosphere seep in. This was the closest town to his country house, and had once been economically dependent upon it. As it was, it had languished slightly, leaving few visitors or reasons for them to come. Now, as he waited in the hotel lobby, there were none other than himself and the few who stayed with him. He left a mostly full cup of coffee untouched, the stifling air made hot drinks unpalatable...
This picture is so old, I needed to sketch Foxglove and JavaSun into the picture, but I think it came out alright. This hasn't actually happened and I doubt it will, but I can imagine Inkbrand forcing the foals in Foals at Heart outside to burn off energy so he can relax for a moment. Even if he finds them more amusing then he should. Grass, tree, and cloud brushes don't belong to me. Fire Walker © Tacobob Razor © ShadowWalking18 JavaSun © moonshinetheleocat Foxglove © Presteza