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Unit V

By Batbooper
Created: 2022-04-22 22:35:02
Updated: 2022-05-23 00:03:21
Expiry: Never

  1. >Be Smile Spire and today is your lucky day. PHEER accepted your application and now you will be leading a brand new team in Foaledo. You have turned in your day guard gear and salute your leader CPT Beaming Kite. He released you from duty in the day guard and even gave you a hug (you will miss him) before dismissing you to your new assignment.
  2. >It was a long ride from Manehattan on the train but by the next day you had reported to your superior Stirling Foresight. This was inside of a new barracks that the crown had made right here in Foaledo. He informed you that you had three newer recruits that you would meet. After going over some general leadership skills he had the secretary bring them in.
  3. >In the somewhat large office room came trotting in three ponies that were all bats. Introductions were made. The first is a Red curly haired mare with Orange eyes that went by the name of Fruits. The next is a smaller stallion with short green hair with teal eyes named Swift Fisher. And last has long black hair for a Bat Stallion and brown eyes. All of their coats were lighter shades of grey. You were a stand out being a fantastic Pegasus Mare with beautiful flowing golden hair, deep pools of blue eyes, glorious wings with the softest feathers, and with a smile that would make any Stallion slip out (if you know what I mean Mares).
  4. >For the next two days Stirling took the time to go through a long and boring course on PHEER’s history and what an agent does. You learned some runes, how to use some tools, and a basic run down of the supernatural spooky spirits. Really what is a Jiangshi and why does it breathe life into corpses?
  5. >It seemed that Thorough Study, what an apt name, took the best to the training. Adjusting his hair as he stood before the group, he addressed what an agent should do if separated from the unit. We were not even taught that he picked it up from a book. Stirling clopped his hooves from the presentation and the next day graduated us from the crash course.
  6. >Standing before us he iterated a few key skills that we possessed. Swift Fisher even though being small was incredibly quick on his hooves with the recommendation that he act as reconnaissance for the unit. Next was Fruits who took to using all the tools quickly and was stated as being the perfect candidate for a unit armorer. He went over Thorough but you kinda didn’t pay attention on that one. Finally he came to me. With stars in my eyes his praised my natural leadership abilities and stated our team had a bright future ahead of us. The next day Stirling and his secretary Pleasant Writ took the train back to Canterlot.
  7. > And here you were with your team Unit V. Or as you all joked the Verrrry best team.
  8. >And a little bit before that:
  9. >Be "Fruits" as your friends like to call you. Or Fire Drill as you should be known. It’s not as if sometimes you are caught in a coma surrounded by the pits of fruit with your lips reddened by strawberries. Never happens not even every Friday.
  10. >Foaledo is your home just like it is for your cousin Swift.
  11. >Thorough is a Manehattan transplant and Spire is from Canterlot.. you think.
  12. >Ever since you were a foal you looked up to your father in the night guard as your hero.
  13. >He was brave and courageous but sadly was taken from you and your mom when you were a teen.
  14. >Growing up you were sure you would be in the guard. But things sometimes do not turn out as planned. You ended up working on the dock yard for a few years until your 20th birthday when your cousin Swift who was in the guard approached you. He joined that PHEER group and thought you might want to as well.
  15. >You questioned him for a while on what they did, then being satisfied that you would protect ponies you joined up. And were assigned with him in a unit that was stationed in Foaledo. It was great news.
  16. >Swift was trained in general PHEER skills at a school in Canterlot. You were actually trained on the job by Swift. You took quickly to the physical demands of the job. Your real shine was the use and maintenance of the equipment. Nary was a day when you didn’t sew up tears, hammer out divots, fix wiring, or make requisitions for more chalk/salt/chemsticks. Your cousin may not pay attention to these deficiencies but you had a keen eye for them.
  17. >For two weeks you and him did small missions around Foaledo. They usually revolved around noises in cellars and attics that turned out to by birds and mice. But there were a few times restless spirits were there. Your cousin was decent at dealing with the persistent not living problems.
  18. >Near the end of the month Thorough was sent down to join you both. He was shy but was a good researcher. Before every mission he usually had good information on something to expect. He wasn’t the greatest on mission if you needed him to do something physical but he was a fountain of ideas. Within another week Spire had arrived and now your unit was filled.
  19. >You are Spire again. Your first mission was with Swift patrolling the nice streets of Foaledo looking for leads on spooky dealings. You ran into the night guard who informed you of some supposedly haunted houses on your route. One of the houses was owned by a nice bat pony couple who let you in. After using your ki meter and some detective work by Swift you were able to locate a keepsake chest that was possessed by a spirit of a dog. You informed the couple about it, and they laughed. It was the spirit of their late Terrier who they had his ashes stored in the chest. Their only bother had been the box moved around sometimes and the lid sometimes lifted when they rubbed the top of it. Thanking you for your troubles the couple made you midnight lunch and off you went. You don’t know about eating meat like the bats do but those shrimp were delicious.
  20. >Thorough and Fruits took the first house clearing mission. Turns out the spirit of an elderly mare was stuck in limbo at a families’ house that had moved in only a year earlier. Thorough wrote out the reports, which was really nice of him that allowed you to talk to Fruits. She stated that the earth pony family was woken up at all hours of the night by a scratchy nagging sound whenever the foals had left their toys out or the dishes were not cleaned, that sort of thing. Fruits says it took some work but her and Thorough eventually convinced the elderly spirit to move on. The family thanked them too and Fruits shared a cookie with you that they had baked, yum!
  21. >For the next week saw a lot of the same where one pair would do an actual mission and the other pair would hunt down one from the town’s ponies. And that brought a lot of good will from not only the towns ponies but also the night and day guard. It wasn’t a mission but you even rescued a kitty in a tree for a filly and the smile on her face when you brought Ms Whiskers to her was priceless. You love this town and you love working for PHEER!
  22. >And here is you hardest mission yet. At the bakery one of the bakers has been acting very weird and Stirling wrote that it required the whole team. Writing back quickly a sending your correspondence letter through dragonfire you rounded up your team. In the barracks there were a few rooms. Two stallion and two mare rooms capable of bunking four ponies each, two bathrooms, one laundry room, one kitchen, one dining room, and a “war room” where you and your team discussed things and work was done including correspondence.
  23. >Gathering the team you all suit up in the very finest PHEER accessories. Fruits goes around making sure everyone’s armor and equipment is working correctly. She even made sure you smelled good enough for the mission, how thoughtful ^-^
  24. >Into the bakery your unit marched in and were met with the lead baker. Supple Dough was his name and baking was his game. And this facility was responsible for all of the baked goods in the town. So the kitchen was really large and had a few storage rooms. Supple, who had a doughy posterior if you must know, told us that one employee of his by the name of Gentle Clop was acting very weirdly for the last week. He showed up at weird hours, made all sorts of weird groaning noises, kept eye contact with you for far too long, and disappeared with baked goods only for them to be found spoiled but not eaten. And today he was somewhere in the bakery making quite the mess. Supple had told all the employees to go home early and now it’s your teams duty to fix this problem.
  25. >Supple locked the doors behind you and told you he would wait outside until you were done. And so your team scanned around the front display area where delicious pastries and breads were sold. Nothing seemed out of the ordinary. Swift took point and Fruits took rear leaving you and Thorough in the middle. Fruits had her ki meter out and the Tau reading started to climb as you all entered the kitchen. Some pots and pans were strewn on the ground with a mess of flour about and spices off the racks…is this normal for a bakery????
  26. >From a darkened corner Swift saw movement and he gave chase. There moving between the table isles was Gentle Clop with a disheveled mane and waxy looking facial features. As he ran around the tables he groaned like he was enjoying this. It looked like he was vomiting a mix of flour and water as he went, much to Swifts dismay and hoofing. You helped corral Clop with the help of Swift and Fruits to the doorways of the supply room. To which he shuffled a hoof underneath himself for a few seconds making some disturbing sounds before shuffling into the back supply room and ewwww his stallionhood is out in full display before disappearing behind the door.
  27. >After cornering Gentle Clop in the back supply room Thorough had deduced that he was a victim of possession. He stated that we needed to find either an item that was linking the possession to him and separate that or somehow intimidate the spirit demon out of him. Slowly the team moved into the supply room which had everything thrown about. Gentle was hunched over a bag of flour humping it like it was a helpless mare. His head turned fully around while he humping the bag and proceeded to projectile vomit toward us.
  28. >Thinking very quickly Swift held a mixing bowl as vomit rocketed into it, and being just like his namesake, he swiftly threw the contents back at Clop. The stallion possessed looked in shock and then made a terrible reeeing sound, to which your unit reeed back at him. I think I went deaf there for a second. And just like that something cylindrical fell onto the floor behind Gentle.
  29. >And then Gentle collapsed onto the bag of flour. It looked like a ewww eww ewwwwww. Thorough approached the object and drew a salt circle around it and Swift drew a rune on it. A devilish scream was heard and then all was calm. Thorough picked up the object with his teeth, eeeeeew, and threw it in the trash. Fruits and Swift helped a disoriented Clop to the front of the store where Supple was waiting and unlocked the door. Supple took a hold of Gentle thanking us and said we would all be receiving a discount from now on.
  30. >GO UNIT V!
  31. >For the next few days your unit went back to its normal routine that was until you received an urgent letter from Stirling. He stated you had a secret mission that required you to rendezvous with a Night Guard Squad at the junction of Appleloosa and Dodge City. From there you would exit at Hollow Shades and link up with another PHEER team at an abandoned orphanage, spooky. Thanks to your teams bravado and your writing up Unit V’s accomplishments in your reports you assume your consistent asking for tougher assignments paid off. Talking to the team you all decided to take a day’s rest and relaxation before heading out to the train station. Fruits had you all test out your salt guns before the train arrived at the train station, neeto!
  32. >You are Fruits again and unit V is waiting at the junction for your night guard escort. The train from Dodge City pulls in and you all board. Searching through the boxcars you find the night guard passed out. Not wanting to wake them your unit unloads their gear underneath the seats across from them, shortly joining them in slumber.
  33. >A few hours later you are awoken by Spire. The guard Squad Leader, Somni, is giving a briefing to her troops and Spire shortly does the same for your unit. Word from the top was they were impressed by your abilities in Foaledo and accepted your units request for a higher status mission. Swift and Thorough had bugged Spire every day about doing bigger and better missions. It only made sense since you tackled everything with ease in Foaledo. Thorough had mentioned Black Hoof was key to request that would put us on the map. You had agreed with them (whats Black Hoof?), adding pressure to Spire who relented after a week of badgering.
  34. >And here was the mission that would grant Unit V grandeur making your mark in the monthly PHEER digest. Maybe even you would get recognition from Princess Luna. That would be a dream.
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  36. >So what’s the mission? Clearing out an abandoned orphanage of all spirits at Black Hoof, that’s what the team wanted. This can’t be too bad right? And you will have another PHEER unit to back you up. Somni’s night guard will also be there in case there are non-spirits that get involved. All these assets for one building make you think something bigger is going on. After asking Spire about that she states that post building clearing you are to hold it with the guard until further notice. Good thing your saddle bags are filled with fruit.
  37. >After Spires’s briefing you see the night guard stallions are relaxing away from Somni. The best way to make friends and meet Stallions is through their stomachs. You grab a small cartoon of berries heading over to them. Their ears perk up at your approach and smiles adorn their faces seeing what you are bringing.
  38. "hmp bfld uu krle brrrs"
  39. >Nodding their heads two of them dig in grabbing hoof fulls and thanking you. The third stallion is a little more timid. He shly approaches thanking you before grabbing a hoof full himself. You decide to sit next to him and eat your little fill of berries. You can see a little red on his cheeks and think this stallion may be a little mare unaware. He is cute so you strike.
  40. >After he shows his embarrassment talking to you and his fellows stop laughing you start to really talk to him. His name is Graham Stroker, and he has been in the night guard for a few years now serving in the badlands. You excitedly discuss what you both have done in your jobs. Seeing as how you have nothing going on your nights off you ask him out after the mission is complete. His fellows laugh hard at him while he mumbles out a sure. You would continue on talking with him but SGT Somni chases you off back to your unit.
  41. >Spire pats you on the withers and Swift tells you could have done way worse. An hour later the train arrives on the outskirts of hollow shades. Your unit and the guard file out. They have a few duffle bags instead of saddle bags they carry with them. Everypony in your large group is wearing your issued sunglasses minus Spire who is the odd one out.
  42. >Your unit makes its way around the outskirts of the town heading towards the orphanage. The guard keeps it in the rear alert for trouble. It is 2 hours before sunset when you all arrive outside the orphanage.
  43.  
  44. >Your unit and the night guard unload the baggage in a neat organized manner near the front entrance. Swift recons around the building with Graham and Somni. A few minutes later they return stating the area is clear with the only entrance being this front door. This orphanage looks to be two stories with an attic and probably a basement.
  45. >Spire wants to wait a bit for the other PHEER unit. The night guard begins building protective fortifications near the front of the building as a just in case outside forces try taking the building. The stallions dig shallow pits and put small logs on the outside. It looks like they have spots to jab out with their spears while they would be in the pits.
  46. >Swift and thorough are getting antsy. Spire is also getting bored just standing here. And to be frank so are you. Spire calls a unit meeting. You all give a vote for entering early without the other unit. Thorough thinks if we can take care of the spirits without the other team we will look great in the eyes of higher command. Swift thinks it would look better if we did it alone but the guard might be a good idea. You comment that you will be staying here for the long term according to our orders so does it matter? Spire puts in here final that we could just start early and the other unit can join in when they get here, no rushing. It seems reasonable to everyone.
  47. >Your unit approaches the guard who are finishing up their defensive works. Spire calls out to SGT Somni who flies over. Somni is not going to stop you from going in since her orders are to wait for the PHEER Recon. Somni states that if we have trouble then call out for the guard and they will come rushing in to clean up the mess. Spire huffs at that but agrees.
  48. >You wave to Graham before you fill inside the orphanage, he waves back. You can hear some snickering and the comment if he wants a fruit spread on his cracker......Stallions what can you do with them.
  49. >Swift takes the lead and Thorough takes the rear as usual. An open hallway stands in front with a single door to the left, two to the right and a staircase going up, and a door at the end of the hallway. Thorough suggests we go to the dining hall first. You check your ki meter and already tau and zen are starting to increase. The ki is standing steady. Checking the doors on the right reveals a basement and a kitchen, and on the left is the dining hall. Your team closes the other doors and spreads out into the dining hall. There are 4 rows of benches with many seats. At the opposite side of the room are partially draped windows. Nothing seems unordinary in here. Just some weird foal paintings on the wall. Some have a cave with monsters and others have classrooms with menacing looking teachers..weird. The ki meter readings have not moved in here.
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  54. >Be Thorough the brave, that’s what ponies should call you. Standing in the mess hall you reminisce.
  55. >You are the researcher for unit V and all around cool stallion....come on let me have this.
  56. >You came to PHEER after you saw and add in the Canterlot press. The add caught your attention with this line. If it bumps in the night, we will fight.
  57. >Since you were a young colt you had seen things that other Bats pushed aside as nonsense. But you did not have the nerve to confront any of it. Many times you tucked tail and ran when you encountered even the smallest and tamest spirit.
  58. >You promised yourself that would change and it kind of did. You worked in Foaledo, a hick town, taking care of the small fry of the spirit world. It raised your confidence being able to send spirits to where they belong. And your team helped somewhat as well.
  59. >Spire, your boss, was feather brained with a good heart. Fruits was a good worker but lacked the strive for greatness. Swift never called you out when you were wrong, and you depended on him a lot for this job.
  60. >It would have been nice to have had a longer class by Stirling. Your somewhat experienced team mates should have taught you more on the job. Sadly all you had to go on were books and other means of learning.
  61. >Speaking of that prior to the poltergeist mission you were in downtown Foaledo, a whopping four shops, minding your own business when a traveler met your eye in the park. She beckoned you over with long eyelashes and bountiful proportions. It was hard not to charge over. She wore what some would call a gypsy outfit, and made promises of a future she could tell if you would follow her. And so you did into a small tent put up by the town's wooden walls.
  62. >She sat behind a table and asked for your hooves. Laying them to her, she rubbed them with her hooves, searching for mysteries with her eyes. Following this she locked eyes with you and what followed is your path now.
  63. >In a different voice that was lower and more seductive, she promised me the glory that I wanted and it could be mine if I agreed to a few stipulations. First she needed me and my unit to go to Black Hoof Hill. There would be trouble that she said we easily take care of. With a purring in her voice and the softness of her touch I asked what I could get in return. She told me that my face would be on display for all of PHEER to see. Added to that I would have a tremendous weight lifted of my withers.
  64. >This was too good to be true. I leapt at the offer. She pulled out a written contract from Luna knows where asking for a drop of blood to cement this contract. In the back of my mind alarm bells rang at this, but she had me under her charms. All I could do was let her prick my hoof making the deal done.
  65. >She followed up the deal with something sweeter. Runes. She drew two runes that I could use for protection. One against evil and one against chaos. Sliding the piece of paper over they looked simple but I could tell they were powerful. She stated they were most effective in Black Hoof Hill and with them my Unit would be safe. With a cheer in my voice I thanked her, to which she smiled darkly before I took my leave.
  66. >After exiting the tent I wanted one last look at her but the tent was empty. I know my destiny now Black Hoof Hill. Glory awaits.
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  71. >Spire calls every pony around one of the tables.
  72. >Spire "Ok Fruits you have some obvious activity showing on the meter and Thorough what is the layout of this place.
  73. >Thorough adjusts his hair "Well as we saw there is a basement level. The current level we are on has the kitchen and this dining hall, and I think a janitors closet at the end of the hallway. The second floor has three rooms. One is a sleeping room for the orphans, one is a classroom, and the other is and administration room. There appears to be an attic entrance in one of those rooms and it likely is in the admin room"
  74. >Swift places his fore hooves on the table to show his emphasis " The fastest way to clear this place is if we split up, we could start on the second floor and sweep those rooms and have one team be below the attic while the other clears, then clear the main floor the same way with one tem ending in the basement"
  75. >Fruit " What if we just do every room together, sure it slower but we have all night"
  76. >Spire sighs “Ok we will take a vote who wants to split up"
  77. >Swift raises his hoof. Spire makes as if she was going to lift her hoof but does not commit
  78. >Swift huffs in frustration
  79. >Spire “Its decided then we do this together and finish together as our unit. And if we do this all before the other unit shows up all the better for our reputation"
  80. >This gets Swift to nod along with Thorough.
  81. >Spire "Here is the plan we clear from top to bottom. In the admin room one team will stay down while the other goes up, and we clear the main after, and then the basement together. If something goes wrong remember use runes use salt use your gun use pick. If someone is injured we get the guard. Look getting glory is great but I don’t want any of you hurt, you are my friends including you Thorough. "
  82. >That gets a laugh and a red faced Thorough.
  83. >Fruits “Oh before we start I brought bananas for everyone”. Fruits passes them out.
  84. >Everyone has a tasty snack in an empty dining hall with nothing going wrong.
  85. >A few minutes later Unit V stacks up and slowly makes their way up the stairs.
  86. >Fruits checks her ki meter “Looks like Tau is climbing and so is Zen.”
  87. >Nothing looks out of the ordinary up here.
  88. >Spire motions to the right door
  89. >Swift lightly taps the handle, then presses the door slowly inward. The team moves inside finding rows of beds lining both walls. The setting sun’s rays can be seen passing into the room.
  90. >Fruits “Tau and Zen have dropped”
  91. >Thorough pipes up “The spirits will likely be hiding away from the light, as soon as it gets dark the readings will pop back up again”
  92. >Swift and Spire have looked up and down the isles for anything of interest. Just messy beds and hoof lockers that are empty.
  93. >Spire “Ok this room is clear onto the middle room”
  94. >The team quickly files out closing the door behind them. Swift tests the middle door as he did the last door. The team files inside. Rows of desks, line facing the blackboard on the wall with the larger instructor desk at the front. At the sides are bookshelves, and on the floor is a broken cauldron. Everything is covered with dust and cobwebs.
  95. >Fruits “Tau and zen are the same as the other room”
  96. >Thorough “I have a bad feeling about this room”
  97. >Spire “Thorough place a few runes on the walls”
  98. >Thorough goes about drawing runes against the wall as if a teacher would be looking at their students. He draws a few perfect circles with crosses on them and then a few squares with crosses in them. “Ok we are good”
  99. >Spire “ Ok onto the last room up here”. The team files out and files into the Administration room. Two large desks sit in the room. Shelves lined with numerous papers, books, and maps line the walls. Numerous curious items are stacked on the shelves. There is a bit of dust and cobwebs in here but nothing like the classroom. The setting sun’s rays are leaving their last mark through the window on the back wall.
  100.  
  101. >On the ceiling is the attic entrance. Swift flies up and lowers the staircase to the ground.
  102. >Spire “Ok Swift and I will check the attic, you two keep guad down here. If anything happens yell out and the team in trouble will be joined by the other”
  103. >Spire and Swift fly up to the top stairs and climb onto the attic floor.
  104. >Spire cracks a chemlight while swift pokes around some boxes.
  105. >Swift “besides some clothing I don’t see much up here”.
  106. >Spire looks at the few pony mannequins that are by the wall. Curious why they are even in an orphanage.
  107. >Fruits from below “The sun has set and slowly Tau and Zen are rising.
  108. >Spire draws a rectangle on each mannequin “Swift does this look right”.
  109. >Swift makes a few more lines in the rectangle and one above it.
  110. >Spire lightly taps her head with her hoof and laughs. Swift laughs with her then they descend the stairs.
  111. >Spire looks around the room spotting a globe on the main desk. She makes a correct rune this time on it then titters around smiling at her unit.
  112. >Thorough “Uh well there are spirits here and they haven’t revealed themselves yet so they must be below here”
  113. >The unit collectively nods their heads filing out into the hallway. All doors are shut upstairs.
  114.  
  115. >Filing downstairs the unit checks the kitchen. It’s dirty with some pots and pans on the ground with some broken dishes.
  116. >Spire “Ok Ponies be on guard that janitor room at the end might be spook central, be prepared for anything”
  117. >Thorough and Swift ready their salt guns. The team moves forward in a reverse wedge formation.
  118. >Near the door Swift catches the handle throwing open the door and jumping back at the same time.
  119. >A mop falls over. Then a mouse scurries out carrying a cracker that looks older than the mouse.
  120. > Swift and Thorough check the room with Spire holding the door open.
  121. >Fruits “No change in Zen or Tau”
  122. >Spire “Ok it’s the basement
  123. >Thorough draws a few circle and square runes in the janitors closet. [spoiler]On the shelf is an IOU for one free hot pocket.[/spoiler]
  124. >Closing the door the whole team readies their salt guns.
  125. >Forming back up in the reverse wedge the team slowly moves down the hall towards the basement door. Every bat hears the nervous gulping of their Unit leader.
  126. >As they are set Swift uses his wings to count down to zero from two. At zero he flings open the door finding darkness below.
  127. >Fruits “Uh I think Ki just went up”
  128. >Thorough “That is probably because we are so close to the guard outside”
  129. >Fruits wears a worried glance as she looks at the ki meter and the darkened basement.
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  132. >Sighing Swift perches himself on the top step and the team slowly files down into the basement. A very dirty wood stove sits in the corner along with a large quantity of rotten wood. Some of the wood looks like it was bleached white in an oblong section where further down it looks a snake skeleton has been bleached as well.
  133. >Spire wrinkles her nose and so does Fruits
  134. >Swift “Did they use this as a bathroom oooh wow that is rank”
  135. >Thorough “Did they say we needed to clear a cave, because that is a cave in front of us”
  136. >True to his statement the entire back wall of the basement had been carved out with a cave branching deeper into the darkness.
  137. >Spire “It wouldn’t hurt if we looked a little further down there and call it a night, I think whatever was here either went down that tunnel or is being contained with our runes”
  138. >Fruits check her ki meter “Tau is a little strong here and Ki looks larger than just four ponies”
  139. >Swift turns around “Look I know no one wants to explore down that tunnel so I tell you what I will trot down a few hundred meters and report back how is that”
  140. >Thorough “Yeah sounds good Swift, did I ever tell you how handsome you look”
  141. >Fruits rolls her eyes
  142. >Spire “Swift you don’t have to do this alone, look I will go with you”
  143. >Swift shakes his head a few times, stomps his little hoof on the ground “Ok Spire it’s you and me”
  144. >Fruits looks at her cousin with worry and Thorough checks the basement door as the duo slowly trots forward.
  145. >Swift and Spire keep their wits about them trotting along in silence salt guns at the ready. A large stalagmite just from the ground in the middle of the cavern.
  146. >Spire motions towards it with her free wing making a circling motion.
  147. >Together they slowly circle around it finding nothing.
  148. >Spire “You know its smells better down here”
  149. >Swift “It does doesn’t it…time to head back”
  150. >Spire “Yeah lets go Swift”
  151. >They trot back to their waiting unit members. Spire and Swift wrinkle their noses once they get close to the basement from the cavern.
  152. >Spire “Ok that is clear so I guess we head back upstairs and check with the guard.”
  153. >Thorough “I hope I don’t get on Somni’s bad side, she is a real firecracker”
  154. >Spire “You can say that again”
  155. >The team files up the stairs with Thorough up front followed by Fruits, Spire, and Swift.
  156. >A dark shape moves from the wood pile
  157. >Its fully dark in the hallway as Thorough reaches the top stair. Swift’s ear catches something and he pauses.
  158. >Fruits looks back down and raises her salt gun. Spire’s eyes go wide, and Swift fires his salt gun in tandem with Fruits. Spire opens up as well. A ferocious inpony yell is heard. Swift and Fruits take to the air arming their picks trying their best to avoid the large arms swinging at them attached to one very large beast. Spire reloads and fires again enraging the beast, salt sparks ricochet of its bleached skull.
  159. The beast charges forward grabbing Spire in its grip slamming her against the staircase. She ragdolls slowly tumbling down.
  160. >Swift lands a deep blow with his pick in the beast’s back. Roaring it reaches back grabbing Swift and bashing him in the head and the back. Swift goes limp.
  161. >Fruits lands at the top of the stairs looking down into the basement. The light on Spire’s vest can be seen slowly moving deeper into the darkness.
  162.  
  163. >Fruits “Thorough get your gun up at the door” She pears to the right and then to the left spotting Thorough racing up the stairs to the second floor.
  164. >Buck buck buck thinks Fruits. Slamming the basement door Fruits rushes to the front hollering for the guard. The door doesn’t budge under her slamming against it. The pick cannot wedge into the door frame. Looking at the ki meter TAU and Zen have spiked, and she can’t get a good reading on Ki since it is maxed.
  165.  
  166. >Outside
  167. >Somni led her guard in a raucous chanting
  168. >Somni “WHO ARE WE”
  169. >Guard Stallions “THE PRINCESSES’ CALVARY”
  170. >Somni “AND WHAT DO WE DO”
  171. >Guard Stallions “PROTECT EQUESTRIANS FROM ALL ENEMIES”
  172. >Somni “FOR THE PRINCESS AND EQUESTRIA”
  173. >The entire Night Guard “EEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE”
  174.  
  175. >Fruits leans against the door looking back into the Orphanage. Ooh what do I do, what do I do. “I have to get Thorough and get out of here” Fruits composes herself then leaps into the air flying to the second level. The classroom door is open.
  176. “THOROUGH WE HAVE TO LEAVE NOW GET OUT HERE”
  177. >Fruits hears the door knob to her right start to turn. Running forward she enters the classroom shutting the door behind her. Peering above the teacher’s desk is Thorough scared out of his mind.
  178. >Fruits runs over to him
  179. “Thorough we leave or die here, pull yourself together”
  180. >Thorough buckles down and cries.
  181. >Fruits looks to the right of the desk spotting two windows. Running over she tries lifting them. They won’t budge. She dries bashing them with her hooves. The glass will not break. And then her eyes pick up the same sound as before the door knob turning. Looking back at Thorough he is laying on the floor rocking back and forth. Mist flows into the room, a chill is in the air. Fruits levels her gun forward.
  182. >A spirit materializes as a Foal looking directly at her then trotting forward.
  183. >Fruits fires at it. A shrill scream is heard, the spirit dissipates. Fruits gets beside Thorough and puts him on her back. She runs forward towards the door and trips sending Thorough onto the ground in front of her. Two foals appear right next to him.
  184. >Fruits backs up to behind the teacher’s desk. She tries to reload but is shaky with the crystal dropping it on the floor. Breathing in she thinks clearly grabbing Thorough’s salt gun on the floor she pops up and freezes.
  185. >Thorough is trying to scream but he can’t, his face half peeled off. The spirits besides him are standing on two hooves with what should be their fore hooves being talons like on a griffin. Slowly they peel the rest of the face off. Thorough slumps onto the ground gasping for air. The spirits announce “ Now your face will be on display for all of PHEER to see.”
  186. >The spirits skip forward with their prize towards the black board. Fruits orients to the front side of the desk as they pass. Quickly she runs near the windows pouring out her salt making a circle. She pops 2 chemlights and puts them against the window. Looking back into the room A DEMON is front of the circle looking up at her. It smiles revealing a mouth of sharpened incisors.
  187. >Fruits levels Thorough salt gun at its face firing. The demon dissipates.
  188. >Fruits begins to reload a crystal then starts the salt pour. Looking forward one of the demons is slowly dragging Thorough out of the room. One appears at his side
  189. >?? “And now you will have a tremendous weight lifted of your withers.” It drives talons into his head severing the head from his torso. The demon turns around with Thorough’s head. Fruit is done reloading leveling the barrel at the demon and fires. The head falls onto the floor only to be pulled out of the room by a thin black tentacle.
  190. >Fruits tries reloading but lacks a crystal to do so. Quickly she pulls out her rune book. In a panic looking for any rune to save her. Her eyes fall upon an oval rune with a cross on it. The description tells her magic cannot manipulate what the rune is drawn on. Looking up she sees it is different than the circles with crosses drawn on the wall. Cursing to herself she grabs her chalk and draws the rune on a window. Finishing it she looks down. Her neck is outside the salt circle and a demon has grabbed her throat. She is losing all air, he vision is turning white. She knocks over her salt container directly onto the Demon. It shrieks letting her go and backing off.
  191. >??”We have time to play bat and wouldn’t that be grand if I were your teacher.”
  192. >Fruits tries to wedge her gun against the window staying inside the salt circle. She is getting it up an inch, YES! Her concentration is broken when something strikes her head. Looking down it is a book. The demon smiles at her.
  193. >?? “I will help you study, maybe you will learn something this evening”
  194. >Fruits turns around desperately trying to get the window open. But it is no use the barrage of books destroys her leverage every time.
  195. >?”They are coming we must hurry”
  196. >?? “I thought we would have all night but now the game ends. It’s too bad though we could make a deal and maybe you would be safe”
  197. >Fruits huffs and then spits outside the circle “Never I saw what you did to Thorough you could never be trusted”
  198. >?? “Suit yourself”
  199. >Two desks are thrown at her knocking her out of the circle and unconscious.
  200.  
  201.  
  202. >SPC Graham looks up at the second story. “I hope they are ok”
  203. >SGT Somni “If they are in trouble they will come running with their tails between their legs. Steel yourself specialist for this night is young.”
  204. >From out of the woodline appears three ponies and a changeling
  205. >SGT Somni spots the changeling “Oh for frick’s sake”
  206.  
  207. >Waking up Fruits back burns badly. A demon foal stands before her on four hooves looking down at her smiling without the teeth. It looks behind itself before walking through the door.
  208. From the hallway Fruits hear
  209. >??: Aether … There is a picture of you..”
  210. >Using the last of her strength Fruits crawls forward past the last row of desk
  211. >??? “Where is it”
  212. >Fruits continues till she is almost in front of the door.
  213. >Sounding weaker than she ever hears she gets out a “Help” before falling back unconscious.
  214.  
  215.  
  216.  
  217.  
  218. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------
  219.  
  220. >Fruits eyes open slowly. She sees the walls of the mess hall and panics. A hoof touches her cheek. Looking over she sees its Graham and behind him are the rest of the night guard and a bat mare she hasn’t met. Fruits gains her hoofing on the table that she was laying on. Sunlight is coming through the windows.
  221. >??? “You are going to be ok, your wounds were not life threatening. Your wings were torn up so don’t expect to fly for a few months”. The mare approaches Fruits putting a hoof on her withers.
  222. >SGT Somni wears a guilty look on her face. “The night guard would have came in to help your unit, we didn’t know you were in trouble.”
  223. >The night guard Stallions nod their heads in agreement.
  224. >SGT Somni “The skinwalker below is dead”
  225. >??? “All of the demons could be destroyed as well, but I will need your help to rune up this orphanage to prevent any more spirits from coming in”
  226. >Fruits steps off the table, her sides are bandaged up over her wings. “How do I know the same thing won’t happen again upstairs, my whole unit was lost” Tears stream down her face. Fruits lunges over at Graham in a hug crying on his withers. Graham strokes her mane.
  227. >??? “Your unit was unprepared for this, I will teach you what you need to know and then we will get to work. SGT Somni we need an escort while we work?”
  228. >SGT Somni scuffs the mess hall floor with a hoof. “SPC Shadow you will stay with the civilians until their work is done. SPC Stalker you will come with me, we have defenses to reassess. SPC Graham you can stay until she is done, then meet us outside”
  229. >Night Guard Stallions “Yes SGT”
  230. >SGT Somni and SPC Stalker exit the mess hall.
  231. >Fruits lifts her head off Graham her tears have dried. Fruits looks at the unknown bat “Who are you , are you from the recon unit?”
  232. >??? “Molo. And yes my unit came up her to assist you in clearing out this orphanage. We split up after destroying the skin walker, so you and I are the only PHEER members here”.
  233. > Fruits whispers a thanks to Graham who whispers something back to her. A small blush is seen on Fruits face.
  234. >Molo “Ok if you are done, Fruits let’s sit at this table and go over the rune book”
  235. >Graham waves to Fruits and exits to rejoin SGT Somni.
  236. > For the next hour Molo goes over runes that they will use in this building and where they will use them. She tests Fruits on her knowledge and when she is satisfied she boops Fruits on the snootle.
  237. >Fruits scrunches then laughs. Looking at the back wall she sees her units saddle bags and the duffle bags. Sighing she goes over to her bag retrieving a few guavas. Sitting back down at the table she shares her bounty with Molo and SPC Shadow. They contentedly devour the fruit leaving the nuts in a wastebin that has seen better days.
  238. >Molo “So here is the plan. We rune up the main floor and then take on the second floor. If there is still a demon or more up here we will attempt to trap it and destroy it. SPC Shadow you don’t mind being a decoy do you”
  239. >Shadow “That demon won’t stand a chance. Yeah I will do it”
  240. >Molo “Good. Fruits the spare gear is by the duffle bag, take what you need and meet me in the hallway.”
  241.  
  242. >Molo exits. SPC Shadow stays back waiting for Fruits to gear up. They both exit the mess hall a few minutes later. Molo is busy placing runes on every door in the hallway. Fruits places the Energy draw rune in multiple place on the hallway walls. SPC Shadow whistles up a tune watching the mares work.
  243. >Molo and Fruits enter the kitchen and rune every window and then pop back out in the hallway where SPC Shadow is staring intently at the closet at the end of the hall
  244. >Shadow “I heard something in there, stay behind me.”
  245. >SPC Shadow levels his spear at the door advancing forward with Molo and Fruits following behind him. Molo wears a bored look on her face.
  246. >Shadow throws open the door leveling his spear at where the noise came from. A mouse with an ancient cookie throws up its hands in surrender. Molo laughs and Fruits blows out a breath she was holding.
  247. >Shadow returns his spear to the resting position, the mouse scurries off. Molo appraises the runes in the closet.
  248. >Molo “I don’t recognize these runes, who drew them”.
  249. >Fruits sniffs “My team mate Thorough did, I don’t know where he learned them but he drew the same ones upstairs and they didn’t protect us like he said they would”
  250. >Molo erases them and draws a few runes in the closet. SPC Shadow spots a check on one of the shelves. It reads as a lifetime bonus for all your hard work, signed Motif, amount 10x 0 bits, to Janny Dogface.
  251. >The team backs out of the closet and heads up the stairs. Molo lines salt in each of the doorways. Turning back to fruits she spots a rune on the floor.
  252. >Molo “Did your unit draw that one?”
  253. >Fruits “I have never seen that rune ever”.
  254. >Molo “It must have been Aether” Molo sighs and taps her hoof a few times on the floor. “Fruits lets stick this one to memory it will have to be useful if he drew it”
  255. >After examining the rune for a few minutes the team enters the admin office. Spotting the globe Molo snickers then begins runeing the office, Fruits follows suit. Molo beckons fruits over and they each draw the mysterious rune in opposite sides of the room. SPC Shadow flies up drawing the attic ladder down. Molo flies up drawing a rune on the back of attic entrance and then lands in the attic landing. Fruits walks up the ladder and SPC Shadow flies up to the attic after she has cleared the way.
  256. > Fruits joins Molos Runeing while SPC Shadow peeks in every box he finds. After they are done the exit the attic and the admin office.
  257. >Molo opens the school room, walking in a few hooves and then gagging. Up on the board Thorough’s stretched out face is hauntingly staring at all who enter. SPC Shadow trots forward taking it down off the wall. Opening a window he chucks it outside for later disposal. Fruits finally enters and Molo recomposes herself. Molo looks at the runes on the backwall, shaking her head she clears them and places Aether’s rune on each wall side. Fruits and Molo finish runeing the room.
  258. >Molo looks at the salt circle by the window “So I take it this is where you had your last stand”
  259. >Fruits nods her head solemnly retrieving her salt blaster behind the desk and giving Thorough’s to SPC Shadow to carry.
  260. >Molo whips out her ki meter in the middle of the room. She walks to both walls that connect to the other rooms checking the meter and then putting it away.
  261. >Molo “There is a little activity in the room we have not gone in but nothing else in the rest of the building. We will rune up that room as well then come back at night to take care of the demon.”
  262. >SPC Shadow nods. Fruits draws her hoof back on the floor, pinning her ears against her head.
  263. >Molo walks over to Fruits patting her on the withers. “We finish this and you can rest easier knowing your Unit has been avenged”
  264. >Fruits nods.
  265. >The team exits the school room. SPC Shadow takes point open the door then charging in spear leveled to impale any demons. To which the rays of the sun beat down into the room leaving no demons at the current moment. SPC Shadow does see the following. Singular pony body parts on bunks. A head, all limbs, a torso, and a tail.
  266. >SPC Shadow “Fruits stay out there for a moment.” Shadow goes to open the window but it will not budge. “Molo can you rune this room the window won’t budge”.
  267. >Molo pops into the room. Disgust paints her face at the view of pony parts. She puts Aether’s rune on every wall then runes up the windows. Shadow pops the windows open a minute later then does as he did in the Class Room, chucking pony parts outside.
  268. >Molo “Fruits you can come in now”
  269. >Fruits comes inside noticing blood smears but not seeing Thorough’s remains. She busies herself drawing runes in the room. Molo and Fruits finish up beckoning Shadow to follow them as they exit the room and head downstairs.
  270. >Molo “Lets head outside, SPC Shadow you can rejoin your unit for a while we have an hour of daylight left”
  271. > Shadow trots ahead of them leaving the front door open all three off them exiting.
  272. > The night guard has extended the trench line to both sides in front of the building.
  273. > Molo and Fruits watch the night guard perform maneuvers both on ground in the air. As the sun finally set and the moon rises the night guard approaches the PHEER members.
  274. >SGT Somni “SPC Shadow you will rejoin them for their last bit of work. The rest of you, we will be standing watch inside the building. Graham you are in the kitchen, I will be at the front door, Stalker you will be in the mess hall”
  275. >Night guard in unison “Yes SGT”. They all file out to their respective locations.
  276. >Once everyone is inside Somni pulls Molo aside. “I don’t want to lose any more ponies here, if things get hairy yell out and the rest of us will charge up”
  277. >Molo “You will not be able to do anything to the demon, if we have too much trouble we will exit the room. The demon is trapped up there so if we don’t get it this evening we will try the next.”
  278. >Somni nods and the unit of Molo, Fruits, and Shadow head up the second story landing.
  279. >Fruits is breathing in and out heavily. Molo rubs her back. 5 minutes late Fruits calms down.
  280. > Molo whispers “The demon cant leave the room at all and it is weakened by the runes. SPC Shadow you need to keep its attention. Fruits and I will trap it in a salt circle then place those runes, Molo points at the one on the ground, so their lines would connect on four sides.” Molo draws a circle on the ground and the runes on the four “cornes of the circle”.
  281. >Fruits “Ohh ok that makes sense, so what will it do”
  282. >Molo “I think it will banish the demon”. If not it will be trapped there until the runes are broken.
  283. >Shadow and Fruits nod.
  284. >Shadow takes point again throwing open the door and charging in. The rooms floor is covered with mist. Shadow paces around the room. “Come out and face me you piece of ofal and I will show you my spear”
  285. >?? “The night guard coming to tackle a demon, how quaint. Tell me Stallion what can you really do against me besides please me” The voice comes from below the second to last mattress.
  286. >SPC Shadow charges driving the spear through the mattress multiple times
  287. >?? “I like a Stallion that is good with his spear, why don’t you come over here and try that again”. The voice comes from below the middle mattress”
  288. >Molo and Fruits watch the action.
  289. >Molo “if we have to then move the mattresses”
  290. >Fruits Nods
  291. >Shadow charges again destroying the middle mattress
  292. >From near the end of the room and foal like shape appears
  293. >??: “Yeah that’s it big boy, how about over here” The demon places a hoof beneath itself, moaning like a whore.
  294. >Rearing up and charging forward , Shadow’s spear goes through the demon. He hops back at the last second dodging the demon’s extended talon.
  295. >Fruits and Molo sneak in the room.
  296. >?? “I see you brought my plaything. Don’t worry bat I will get back to you later. But first come back here stud I have demon depths to show you.”
  297. >Shadow prances side to side using shallow thrusts of the spear that would be devastating to something natural.
  298. > Molo and Fruits throw the last few mattresses in the rows back into the center mattresses as Shadow repeatedly “strikes the demon”. The demon’s moaning continues as it nearly connects a talon with Shadow’s forehoof.
  299. >?? “Im so close big colt , why don’t you finish me off, and then we can cuddle under the stars”
  300. >Shadow rears up slamming his hooves down. The demon lunges forward at that very moment catching his spear and chucking it to the side. Shadow leaps back. Then prances circles around the demon. Thin black tentacles erupt from its back lashing out at him at every angle. They bounce of his armor and leave welts on his skin
  301. >?? “Oooh now this is what I call a climax”
  302. >Molo nods to fruit. In tandem they expeditiously pour a large salt circle going in opposite directions covering both Shadow and the demon inside
  303. >The circle is complete.
  304. >Molo “Shadow leap out”
  305. > Shadow attempts to leap out of the circle but is caught by a tentacle Circling his hoof. It drags him close to the demon who is licking her lips.
  306. >?? “Its been so long colt, I think its time I just eat you up”
  307. >Fruits aims her salt gun at the demon “This is for my Unit”. Firing at the demon causing a shriek and its disappearance.
  308. > Shadow stumbles forward then exits the circle to which Molo quickly corrects the salt circle.
  309. >Molo “Ok Fruits lets draw those runes”
  310. >Fruits and Molo draw the first two runes. The demon reappears. Looking at the runes a slight panic appears on its face.
  311. >??: “Stop and listen bats I have a proposition. I can grant you powers unseen if you will just let me go”
  312. >Molo and Fruits ignore it drawing the last two runes.
  313. >They both back up. The demon looks very weakened but still holding form.
  314. >Molo grumbles “we need blood on the runes”.
  315. >SPC Shadow “Don’t worry with all the lashes she gave me I can just bleed a little on them.” Shadow goes around letting blood leak from the open cuts onto the runes. After the last rune has blood on it a light emanates from the runes into the center. The demon screams in agony, a sulphorous smell covers the room, and the demon explodes covering Shadow in gore.
  316. >Fruits and Molo wipe off the small gore parts on themselves.
  317. >Shadow “Ugh I think I will wash up in the kitchen, do you civilians need anything else”
  318. >Molo “You are free to go, and thanks SPC Shadow you were a help”
  319. >Shadow nods then trots out of the room. His hoof clops can be heard coming down the stairs
  320. >From out in the hallway. SGT Somni “What the hell happened to you”
  321. >Shadow “The demons gone. And I am taking a sink bath.”
  322.  
  323. >Fruits approaches Molo.
  324. >Molo “Its over now your team has been avenged”
  325. >Fruits hugs Molo, who at first looks apprehensive then goes into the hug.
  326. >Molo “Lets say we clean up this mess tomorrow and call it a night”
  327. >Fruits “sounds good to me”
  328. >They both trot out of the room closing the door behind them.
  329.  
  330. >Near sunrise
  331. >SPC Graham “SGT Somni we have movement in the tree line out front. Multiple unidentified ponies. I don’t think there are any bats”
  332. >SGT Somni “EVERYONE OUT TO THE TRENCHES NOW, AND DON’T FORGET YOUR WEAPONS”
  333. > All the bat ponies thunderously charge out in the yard making for the trenches.
  334. >The thwacking of crossbow bolts can be heard impacting near them.
  335. >The night guard and the PHEER members make it to the trenches with no injuries.
  336. >SGT Somni “SPC Stalker how many are out there”
  337. >Stalker pops his head up between the log fortifications and then popping back down as three crossbow bolts impact the wood.
  338. >Stalker “There looks to be six, I saw a unicorn and a pegasus in that mix”
  339. >SGT Somni “All right here’s what’s going to happen. Graham, Fruits, and Molo you are going to be the distracting element. Make all the noise, chuck rocks, do whatever you can to keep those bastards focused on you. Stalker, Shadow, you are with me we will flank from the right side going through the east trees then south. We will attack at the right moment, keep all of your heads down we are going silent. Graham after you hear our attack impact, leap up and charge in against a target of opportunity. Molo and Fruits this isn’t your fight just distract the enemy. Ok lets go”
  340. >Somni, Shadow, and Stalker keep low moving through the trenches to the tree line.
  341. >Fruits pops up “I bet you ponies like fish flavored muffins”
  342. >Graham pops up “When you get a lottery ticket you try scratch and sniffing it”
  343. >They both duck down as a few bolts impact the wood
  344. >Molo rolls her eyes “Amateurs, watch how this is done”
  345. >Molo sucks in a large breath popping up “ALL I SEE ARE SHRIMP DICKS AND FLATS TEATS INFRONT OF ME, IF YOU EVER HAD A DATE YOU PAID THEM UP FRONT, SINCE THE DAY GUARD WOULDN’T TAKE YOU YOU SETTLED FOR SMILE P-A-T-H-E-T-I-C” Many bolts impacted the wood, and one skinned the side of her chin.
  346. >Molo grumbles ducking down to another position and popping “ @#$*&%$@ !**&$%# you #*%&@*%$ even *$%^#&@ her #*&%$#@ with *$%#^@ you”
  347. >The largest barrage of bolts barrel down on Molo’s position, luckily none hit her. As she was ducking down the whole team in the trenches could hear
  348. >SGT Somni “CHARGE!”
  349. >SPC Shadow and Stalker “YAH!”
  350. >The sound of steel impacting flesh could be heard.
  351. >Graham pops up and flies forward charging into a unicorn that’s horn looked like it was about to do something nasty to Shadow.
  352. >Fruits and Molo watch the action. Its short and they have one pony on the ground spread eagle, the rest look dead or dying.
  353. >Shadow and Stalker search the Pegasus. Stalker throws out a dagger and Shadow binds up the ponies wings. Graham and Somni go about searching the bodies taking daggers and crossbows. Somni finds a map on the unicorn stashing it behind her chest plate. Somni says something, then Graham flies over to front of the house grabs a shovel. He flies back to Somni who chucks the shovel at the Pegasus commanding her to dig.
  354. >Fruits and Molo trot over to the battle site. Molo grabs two pairs of goggles. The Pegasus is busying digging a grave. Somni motions the PHEER agents over. Removing the map she folds it out. It’s a map of the local area with numerous circles and Xs through a few of the circles. The X marked location are on the outskirts of the town. The orphanage has a few lines underneath its circle.
  355. >Somni “Looks like we stopped them before they could cause more terror but not soon enough to stop all of it”. “Shadow change of plans it’s a mass grave not singulars”
  356. >Shadow nods
  357. >An hour goes by and the sun has risen. The grave looks deep enough for the Night Guard. The Pegasus drags all the bodies in the grave. Then filling it in with the excess dirt.
  358. >Two hour goes by.
  359. >The night guard and Pheer agents are racked out in the mess hall. Graham is doing day guard until he is relieved by shadow in a few hours.
  360. >Their captive Down Bedding had revealed to her captors that her leader was the unicorn. They were to eliminate everypony inside the orphanage then proceed onto their next mission. After being further interrogated by the Night Guard she also let out that they have found how to control some cryptids by use of magic. This only allows simple commands nothing to long winded. After the interrogation she was fully bound and tied to one of the tables.
  361.  
  362.  
  363. ---------------------------------------------

Tribes Researcher

by Batbooper

Derp at your Door

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Hidden Strike

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2 Bats 1 Human

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Unit V

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