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Snow fell heavy on this somber morning in the Askr clan's great City-hold. At this time normally there would be lively caribou and even brief appearances of other species in the crowds, but now all the streets were empty. Houses and dwellings were boarded up from the outside as many families fled at the behest of their chieftain to a safe zone outside of the city's walls. Eight cloven hooves clopped silently down the street. One set of four belonged to a statuesque cow in a long cloak that covered up the majority of her body. The other wore a similar cloak but his having a slightly brighter color to it. A waft of steam escaped the Cow's nostrils as they flared to let out a sigh. The chieftain of the Askr clan was missing those usual smiles she wore many places outside. Instead of her usual playful grin or sly smirk, she wore a furrowed brow and her eyes seemed sharper than usual because of it. To see the hold she'd worked so hard to build up seeming so empty of it's usual cheer... it was heartbreaking to the cow who had given so much of herself to raise up her clan to these lofty heights in the treacherous eastern ends of Whitescar. The fact that the enemy she was faced with was somehow magic based and was an infection and not an earthly body she could strike down or reason with only made this all the more maddening. Today, She and her clan faced a threat they could not hope to defeat on their own due to it's nature... it required the assistance of allies whose views towards the caribou species were mixed at best. She turned to the Royal Equestrian Military and that of the task force of E.P.I.C. to help save her clan. Thanks to intelligence of the scouts who returned from the reconnaissance, Sigrun had prepared a path that could quickly take them out to the great hall at the center of the city. She could only hope the experts she had asked for would arrive soon and any that arrived late would be escorted by her personal guard that were stationed at the sides of the tall gate that marked the main entrance to the great clan's home. One of of the younger looking troopes galloped over and spoke up to the Jarl mentioning the snowfall was a precursor to an approaching storm that was descending from the Serpent's spine... it would be upon the territory come nightfall. Sigrun grit her teeth and glared at the young bull before closing her eyes to calm her nerves, "Thank you, Young one... make sure you go back to the barracks as soon as possible." While she tried to keep up her chipper demeanor she couldn't help but be worried about not only this coming storm and it's implications: if it fell upon them before all the stage 3 caribou were caught, then they could escape in the cover of the snowstorm and escape to infect more victims. The last thing that worried her was the presence of her ward. Why hadn't he gone yet?! why did he decide to stay? This was possibly the worst time to have someone she was close at her side in such a dangerous situation... and even stranger, her ward recommended the help of an admitted kind necromancer, but still a necromancer. "Limi... Are you sure this is where you wish to be right now?" she asked, looking somewhat sternly at the young bull by her side.
The unicorn WRAITH Officer had incinerated the letter awhile ago, though she couldn't stop thinking about it. The ambitious mare had a big smile on her face as the small team of mooks and scientists got to work. She didn't know why they couldn't just dump the plague in the water and call it a day, but the eggheads insisted it "must be added gradually". Either way, she knew this was going to be her big break! If she succeeded here, she might even be rewarded! She might even get a name tag! Finally! Recognition she deserved! She couldn't fail, and thus far, they had been practically unopposed! Unnoticed, even! Or so she thought. This underground waterway didn't offer much in the way of protection, however. It was fairly canalized with few places to hide. Something that may or may not work in their favor, but she preferred to get out of here as quickly as possible. Just on the off chance somepony did notice them going in here. It did strike her as a bit odd there weren't more guards, seeing as this water directly went to the caribou royalty... Her supervision cut short by rumbling footsteps coming up behind her, the Officer scoffing as she looked over her shoulder at the 'Elite' operative she was provided. "What is it now, you impertinent buffoon?" she asked of the very large Diamond Dog towering over her. He and his new gadget had been assigned as extra insurance for her operation, though in all honesty she took it as a slight. She didn't need W.R.A.I.T.H.'s lapdog to babysit. She had things well under control! "Dog new pack is ready" he reported, referring to the large crystal pack strapped to his back. The mare seemed unimpressed. Did he even know how to use that thing? A new development of W.R.A.I.T.H.'s R&D department, it was supposed to be some kind of 'magic beam caster' that was originally going to be used as a static post. Instead, they decided to strap the prototype to Dog. "Very well. Stay within earshot. If one of those savages wanders down here you will need to dispose of them..." Dog nodded, and situated himself in a darker nook of the waterway to sit and await further instructions... Or for trouble to start. The spot was shadowed enough to hide him with her darker fur color. While not the stealthiest guy around, perhaps if he held still he could at least surprise potential opponents. Maybe. But until then, he'd just have to wait and fantasize about hitting something. The remainder of the security team, four uniformed mooks sat at the entrance, were just making idle chatter through their respirators. Glorified lookouts, if nothing else. At the very least they could buy some time before Dog was deployed. "What's taking so long?!" she barked at one of the WRAITH scientists, looking up from the canisters they were rigging up. "We're finishing calibrations now... The pressure levels of these containers need to be set to to release the contagion at a rate where it will not be too diluted and will have a better chance of contaminating the water supply as a whole! Of course, if you decided to assist us, we could move this along much-" the stallion was cut off by a fireball square to the torso, singeing his labcoat and knocking him against the far wall. The Officer, he horn steaming, just stifled a chuckle. "You shouldn't make jokes, doctor. Humor is... hurtful... and can ruin lives. Besides, if you're telling me you need my assistance to do your job... All I'm hearing is you admitting you've outlived your usefulness..." Without another word, the scientist limped back to work, leaving the underground waterway itself back to an eerie silence.