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[Nightmare Night] Day 1 - The Gates of Tartarus Haunted House, hosted by Iron Will


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This ghoulish haunted house is slick in a nearly audible atmosphere of malice, every edge of it designed to scare you away from venturing inside. If you can get past the macabre outside, you'll wish you hadn't- ponies dressed as monsters leap out at you, rooms designed as 'traps', and the sound of timberwolves closing in all around you. They say that Cerberus guards the Gates of Tartarus alone, but the moment you step into Iron Will's haunted house, you'll swear you've seen Tartarus in the flesh!

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Ardent Fate's eyes remained sharp and focused as they explored the dark corridors of the haunted house. Nightmare Night: Fate had learned the previous year that it was a day mainly for fun and games. The ghouls of the day were not real; the monsters lurking around the corner were all fabricated. She had assailed enough costumed ponies with her quite real sword to understand both what she should and shouldn't do upon the day. She got it now, even if she still chose only to dress herself in her father's throughly worn knightly travel cloak, her prized blade on her back.

However, even if it wasn't all real, that didn't mean the day was useless to her! No, with the fearsome frights abounding all about, the entire experience made for an excellent test of her knightly valor! Braving the constructs of terror filling Ponyville that night could be a most important step in forging her knightly legacy! Following her Iron Pony success, Fate was ready for anything. Princess Celestia had even wished her well in a letter! There was nothing that could scare her now.

Just then a pony skeleton jumped out at her from the wall, causing the young filly to give a shriek. She ran back and cowered behind a wall. Only after peeking back out and staring at the thing did she realized it was fake, set up to sock passersby. She gave a gulp. She was going to be a brave knight, the kind who would be able to brave the real Tartarus someday... but right here, in that moment, this fake Tartarus place really crept her out. She was ashamed of it, but that was the fact.

She couldn't let it get to her. She had to swallow her fear and press onward. Even as a ghostly wail permeated the air, Fate stepped ahead. Whatever was ahead, she could handle it! This was the next chapter in her story of greatness!
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Telki had to make that trip back to Ponyville, she had heard much about the elaborate Nightmare Night celebrations there and was just dying to check it out. No matter that the ponies in Ponyville treated this as a community event (and therefore would not pay her for her services), nor that she had arrived too late to aid in the effort anyway.

Arriving in Ponyville, she quickly realized that she nether had a costume nor the bits to spare to purchase one, and even if the did, the shops would be closed this night anyway.

Luckily for her, she realized that her traveling cloak, used in this context, gave her a somewhat air of mystery. Also, whimsically she found out that if she focused just enough, she could make her eyes glow, the same eye glow that occurred as a by product of when she was using her telekinesis, but this time without actually needing to carry anything.

Choosing the most convenient and creepiest place to explore first she sauntered into the Haunted House. But not before reminding herself "[colour=#FF8C00]"Nerves of steel, Telki, nerves of steel"[/colour]

Sauntering carefreely throughout the house, she divided her time equally between admiring the attention to detail, flinching slightly, then responding with a wink when jumped by ponies in skeleton costumes; and raising her head slowly and making her eyes glow menacingly that one time she spotted a pony in a witch costume hiding clumsily behind a bush, neatly turning the tables on her would be scarer.

Going further in she heard a shriek, followed by a wail and grinned. The house was having a better effect on another pony!

"[colour=#FF8C00]Maybe that pony will run into me...[/colour]" she thought whimsically. "[colour=#FF8C00]It'll be fun to pull an additional prank[/colour]"

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Entering the Haunted House of Iron will in a serene and stately walk, Wordsworth Psmith made his effective entrance into the Ponyville Nightmare Night festivities. He was an older colt, of a greyish lavender coat and brown mane, just starting to grow to what would probably be an impressive length in the legs. Not that one would have thought be looking at him that he'd ever make much use of them; his attitude and bearing did not suggest the athlete in the slightest.

Perhaps it was that reason which led him to choose for a costume the flannels of a professional cricket player, with a bat and ball strapped to his back. Psmith was not without a sense of humor.

As he proceeded past the initial guard of the macabre, he regarded it with interest, but there was something patronizing in the Canterlot's colt's stare, which moved the denizens of the place to further increase their efforts. Little result, however, could be expected from the initial guard. Once or twice he did look around sharply, with a raised eyebrow, but uttered nothing more than rather bland remarks. "[colour=#996699]After three skeletons, I start to wonder about your master's interference in your feeding habits.[/colour]" He said to one such costumed pony, who glared back defiantly through his eye sockets.

He found Telki just as she had finished turning the tables on the costumed witch, and sauntered up to her, and began to talk, speaking as if he was picking up the thread of a conversation recently dropped. "[colour=#996699]I tell you, comrade, the entire secret is to keep the philosophical balance. I feel a mind which can consider things properly, and is always careful never to confuse the unusual with the impossible, need never fear. I hear your objection, that Nightmare Night is an occasion to court terror. Just so, but consider, for every action, there must be an actor. If we are to be sacred, somepony must scare us. It is thought worth doing, and anything worth doing is worth braving challenges. I come to to provide this challenge, not only to the very able architect of this establishment, but to myself as well. It is a fine duel of minds, comrade! I challenge their ingenuity, and they challenge my philosophy. A triumph of either, well-earned, would just put the cap on such a holiday.[/colour]"

Psmith had a habit of doing this, of 'carrying on conversations by himself with other people', as one schoolmate of his had put it.

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(OOC: roflmao wordsmith sounds like a friend of mine, she uses words and sentences that are way to long for her own good XD)

Telki was trying to pin point the sound of the earlier shriek, perhaps looking for a chance to ambush the shrieker and perhaps get some jollies out of it

What happened next was totally unexpected....

[colour=#996699]huge wall-o-monologue[/colour]

"[colour=#FF8C00]Waa?[/colour]" Telki's mind raced to catch what was said, then slowed down as she slowly digested everything.

Catching the gist of it, she lowered her head slightly as if slightly contemplating, the raised it slowly and replied in the lowest tone she could muster, hoping that it would hide her usual high pitched voice.

"[colour=#FF8C00]It is all but a game, and we are all players[/colour]" she said slowly, deliberately. "[colour=#FF8C00]Doesn't mean that we need sit passively and play by the rules. RIGHT?[/colour]" at the mention of RIGHT she turned to face the speaker, face obscured by the darkness and the hood of her traveling cloak, eyes blazing an eerie fire red.

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princess_celestia___smiling_by_hawk9mm-d528iir.png

The mighty daytime ruler of Equestria has made a special trip to Ponyville to partake in the Nightmare Night festivities. Her smile is almost as bright as the sun, and just as welcoming. The ruler of Equestria is well known for her fairness, and equal treatment regarding all of her loyal subjects. She doesn't reward her subjects as well as her sister on this night, out of respect, but finding her will net you a piece of candy nonetheless.

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(Thank you!)

Psmith politely ignored Telki's initial moment of confusion; most ponies tended to need a moment or two to get used to the idea of his existence before fully mustering their wits to reply. As the hooded mare turned to look with blazing eyes at him, they would have met his own teal eyes, placid as still water. "[colour=#996699]Perhaps so. Still, comrade, consider it philosophically. The same rules which prevent a bowler from beaning the batsman with a yorker also prevent the batsman from setting about the bowler with his bat and hitting him for six. If we are playing a game, and not simply scrapping, the spirit of fair play does in some respect call for the rules of engagement. We applaud your technique, though, and do not think much of any rule system which should exclude it out of mere prejudice, comrade- I don't believe I caught your name?[/colour]"

As the pair progressed through the manor, however, even Psmith had to admit that any game that admitted this could have no objections to whatever Telki came up with. The initial set of "jump scares" were just meant to ease the traveler into the spirit of the place. Inside the house, it was more ambient, with the sounds of Timberwolves and the atmosphere of Tartarus. Most of the rooms, in fact, were not trapped, which only cranked up the nerves for the ones which were. The Canterlotian colt kept a running commentary to this effect, the only outward sign of perturbation being a tendency for shallower breaths and quicker speech. "[colour=#996699]I believe we are coming near the end of it, the final confrontation.[/colour]" He said for the third time as they entered through another door... to find a room with another door. "[colour=#996699]Gad, this Iron Will knew his business. I've never known an architect for fitting so many rooms into one house.[/colour]" He was really breathing hard this time, striding to the door and opening it to find-

"[colour=#996699]Why, your majesty![/colour]" Psmith said with a bow, for all the world as if he'd found Princess Celestia in his own drawing-room, and not a haunted house. The occasion was worth comment, though. "[colour=#996699]Like Horseus, we have braved Tartarus to find beauty.[/colour]"

As Psmith commented afterwards, though, they had the advantage over that classical figure. He never found candy on his epic journey.

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