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Travel Account 5: Gold Plate

It seems Barricade was unable to start upon the rescue of the ponies that went missing from Twin palms village. Now it falls on me to get this show on the road and lead the expedition out towards wherever the taken ponies were.

I arrived in the town hall just as everyone else had said I would. I suppose I shouldn't have thought much would happen but it seemed a little underwhelming to me. The pinching feeling was there of course but besides that and the flash of the spell there was nothing too spectacular about it. The town hall was just as it had been described to me with the wooden flooring covered by a light rug and the desk with a few chairs sitting near it. The glass cases and decorations on the side walls were at least interesting to look at, but still didn't strike me as much. Then there were the earth ponies crowded around watching me. They had a multitude of colors typical to earth ponies and seemed to like my golden armor. I had forgotten the fact that I was the only one to actually come wearing the standard golden royal guard armor. Barricade had his dull steel armor on but it was worn and not nearly as well maintained as mine.

While I stood there I noticed an old stallion and what appeared to be the only unicorn in the room at the front of the crowd, each with a business like expression on their face. I waited for them to start the conversation and they started off with introductions. Midnight and Quicksilver told me about the plan of action that I had heard from the previous travel entries that had been given to me to read. Assuming nothing happened; this was going to be the time we actually set out for the ponies that had been taken from the village by who knows what. I just hoped this would go smoothly.

Once I was acquainted with the ponies that would be going with me on the boats, I gathered up whatever supplies would be needed along with the beacon that focused the time spell to its location. The crew that would be following my orders consisted of Quicksilver, a blue earth pony named Seafoam who was captain of the boat we would be sailing aboard, a brown pony with a black mane and tail named Compass Rose who acted as navigator, and an orange pony with a scarlet mane and tail named Fox who was in charge of the archers aboard. Besides them, there were various others along who were helping in any way they could. The ship wasn't large compared to some I've seen, but it fit a decent number of ponies aboard.

We were ready to set off at around midday. The trip to the islands where the ponies were supposedly taken would take a couple of hours as well as the trip back. If all went well, we should have been able to return shortly after nightfall. Too bad this wasn't meant to be.

When we arrived at the island everything seemed normal. The trees looked as if they had always been there, and there were no signs of civilization that I could find. We started a trek into the trees to see what we could find. Unfortunately, we didn't get far before a magical shield popped up around us, trapping us within a confined area of the forest. That's when a small group of three unicorns walked out into our line of sight and looked us all over carefully. They spoke between each other in a language I was not familiar with. I recognized it from somewhere, but I can't tell where I'd heard it from.

While the three unicorns spoke among themselves, Quicksilver tried to break through the shield with his own magic. The effect was less than desirable as Quicksilver's spell bounced off the shield and back at us dodging ponies. Luckily no pony was hurt as the spell was absorbed into the ground where it hit. I may not be a unicorn, but even I felt the magical feedback that came from beneath us. There was more magic within the dirt than just that of Quicksilver's spell. Whether the island was naturally that way or it had been enchanted to act as a magic battery I had no idea.

After hearing the commotion, the unicorn trio turned back to us watching curiously. They said one more thing to each other before they came up to us and started to cast some spell. I'm not sure exactly what spell they used, but it seemed to knock us all out.

When I regained consciousness, I was in some sort of circular room. The ceiling had a huge, gaping hole in it while there appeared to be strange runes carved all over the walls and pillars within the area. We still had all of our supplies with us so either nothing interested these ponies or they just didn't care. I am willing to bet it has something to do with the multitude of runes that covered the walls.

As I studied the room for any odd detail, the other ponies around me started to wake from their slumbers. Whatever had been done to us had lasted a few hours at least as the sun was beginning to set in the sky. Why we had been brought to this odd place is something I will likely never be able to figure out. Quicksilver was the last to wake up and shortly after he did, a group of perhaps a dozen unicorns stepped out of a doorway to the east. They took up a formation around us and began speaking in their native tongue. It was similar to ancient Equestrian, but was much more guttural and had many words I have never heard before.

While I only recognized a few words, and even then could never place their meaning, it seemed that Quicksilver understood what was being said by the unicorns. He seemed freaked out by the words and was constantly looking up to the sky. I soon discovered the reason as a massive form appeared and obstructed nearly the entire hole in the ceiling. Whatever the beast was, it was pure black and seemed to have its skin moving constantly as if it were made of smoke. This creature then reached down and plucked one of our crew members from the ground and lifted him until he was about halfway up the height of the room.

Once the pony was lifted, the runes began to glow and appear on the body of the captive pony as he hollered out in pain. Then, the pony suddenly started falling apart and turning to ash. Soon the entire body was gone and only a skeleton remained. The ash had been sucked into the creature's hand as it burned off.

The bones were then ground together into a powder and dropped until it created a new layer of dust on the floor. This entire process was repeated with three more ponies before the creature bellowed into the night and disappeared as quickly as it had arrived.

I spent the night freaking out over what had happened. I got no sleep at all. In the morning I set down the beacon like I was supposed to and used the spell ring to send myself back to my true time period. I wish luck for whoever goes into the past next.

End of Chapter 5

Here is the next part of Changed Worlds Changed Minds. It has been far too long since an update and I can really blame no one but myself. So I blame school and laziness. I will try to update soon but I seriously will not make any guarantees don't hold your breath for an update.