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898550 No. 898550 ID: 15a025

Previous Threads:
https://tgchan.org/kusaba/questarch/res/827428.html
https://tgchan.org/kusaba/questarch/res/842528.html
https://tgchan.org/kusaba/questarch/res/868410.html
https://tgchan.org/kusaba/questarch/res/879792.html

Discussion Thread: https://tgchan.org/kusaba/questdis/res/115339.html

Wiki Page: https://tgchan.org/wiki/The_Herd
137 posts omitted. Last 50 shown. Expand all images
>>
No. 905764 ID: 15a025
File 153896874228.png - (5.05KB , 800x600 , 70.png )
905764

>use your cell phone as a flashlight so you can see what's down in the hole.
Oh right, I keep forgetting about that. Or all the stuff I'm toting around in my sweater?"
I dig out the phone and shine it in the fire place and peep down the ho-ello!

There's a red enchantment stone hiding in down here! I wonder if this was used for the fireplace at all?
>>
No. 905765 ID: 15a025
File 153896876292.png - (5.88KB , 800x600 , 71.png )
905765

> Maybe you can use the fire poker to fish it out of there.

I grab the bent up fire poker and try to straighten it out a bit. Only then to realize it's not going to go down the hole this way. I have to re-bend it to fit it down.
>>
No. 905766 ID: 15a025
File 153896878316.png - (5.82KB , 800x600 , 72.png )
905766

After a couple attempts at rolling it up the hole, I manage to get it out. Now the question is, what am I going to do with it?
>>
No. 905772 ID: 91ee5f

>>905766
Well, the police are offering monetary rewards for turning in enchantment stones, so maybe we should turn it in and you can finally have some money in your pockets. Or you can have it put into us, so you can have some way to protect yourself, should you need it.

However, even though you’ve got an enchantment license and we have an open slot for another fire enchantment, you’ve gotta get it approved by the police for you to have it put in us. Annnd you’re probably going to need money to do that......shit, maybe you’re just better off turning it in for money?

Just remember what Officer Nibbles said and don’t try to use that stone without that collar you were using during your test! Unless you want to destroy both it and us!
>>
No. 905775 ID: 891b91

Yeah, turn it in to the police, but don't tell them where you found it. Remember, Sugar brought in a big sack of these things not too long ago. In fact, there's probably a decent chance that she hid it there.
>>
No. 905778 ID: 91ee5f

>>905772
Also, put that rock back in the hole and put the fire poker back where you found it. Then hide that stone until you can get it to the cops tomorrow.

>>905775
I guess telling them we found it in the snow wouldn’t be too hard to believe.

Just gotta make sure we clean it so that it’s not covered in soot from the fireplace, so that it’ll be a more believable story.
>>
No. 905785 ID: fafba8

>>905766
I mean is it even enchanted? I mean it looks like it is but you never know. I mean we hide gems all the time. rich bastards
>>
No. 905819 ID: b1b4f3

>>905766
You have a license, and you have practice using a fire enchantment stone. It's effectively been abandoned by the previous owners of the house so it's legal to take. Keep it!

I mean why did you go get training using a stone if you're just going to give it to the police as soon as you get one? That doesn't make any sense.
>>
No. 905822 ID: 91ee5f

>>905819
Officer Nibbles and Officer Freeze explained it here: >>/questarch/879983 .

The reason she can’t use it is because if she tries, she’ll break us and that stone she found.

Which is why she needed to wear that special collar during her enchantment training.

The alternative is to constantly take us off before using the stone she found, which blinds us from what’s going on around her and if anyone sees her doing that, they’ll know her earring is also an enchantment stone.
>>
No. 905823 ID: b1b4f3

>>905822
It's still better than giving up the option.
>>
No. 905875 ID: 91ee5f

>>905823
We don’t have to give it up. Officer Nibbles said that we’ve got some open slots on us for 2 more enchantments.

All we’d have to do is have the cops look at this stone and tell us if Candy’s license allows her to have it. If they say we can have it, then we just transfer that enchantment into us and Candy will have a way to defend herself without needing to carry around another stone. The only problem is knowing how much money that’s going to cost.

.....actually, doesn’t Sugar still owe Candy something for winning that bet on being able to get an enchantment license? I know Sugar said Candy could take a stone from that huge pile Sugar brought home, but maybe we can have her give us some money instead?
>>
No. 905884 ID: b1b4f3

>>905875
If we have two slots then we should take a Light stone from the pile.
>>
No. 906202 ID: 91ee5f

>>905884
I thought we were told that it’s bad to put a spell that’s a different element than the element of the stone you want to put it on?

The only exception seems to be if the spell in a neutral element, like us.
>>
No. 906348 ID: 15a025
File 153920673276.png - (5.78KB , 800x600 , 73.png )
906348

>I mean is it even enchanted?
There's a chance it could be some red stone, or even just an empty enchantment stone. I'd have to get it appraised to know for sure.

>Well, the police are offering monetary rewards for turning in enchantment stones, so maybe we should turn it in and you can finally have some money in your pockets.
I thought they were just giving hot chocolate to anyone turning them in, no questions asked the other week?

>Yeah, turn it in to the police, but don't tell them where you found it. Remember, Sugar brought in a big sack of these things not too long ago. In fact, there's probably a decent chance that she hid it there.
>It's effectively been abandoned by the previous owners of the house so it's legal to take. Keep it!
I'll take it the station with me next time I go, and ask Officer Nibbles to appraise it for me, and then hear what she has to say about fusing it into my earring.

She's definitely going to want to know where it came from though.

>telling them we found it in the snow wouldn’t be too hard to believe.
That might sound like someone lost it in the snow then. She might take it and try to search for the 'owner' then.

I might be better off just saying it was my grandparents, and they left it in the house when they moved out.

>you’re probably going to need money to [fuse enchantment stones]
Money I don't have, dang it. I owe Marsh... shoot I've already forgot how much? I don't think my "paycheck" from my sister is even going to cover that when I get it.

>doesn’t Sugar still owe Candy something for winning that bet on being able to get an enchantment license? I know Sugar said Candy could take a stone from that huge pile Sugar brought home, but maybe we can have her give us some money instead?
It might not be completely out of the question, but I'm not sure she'd give me much.

>If we have two slots then we should take a Light stone from the pile.
>I thought we were told that it’s bad to put a spell that’s a different element than the element of the stone you want to put it on?
>The only exception seems to be if the spell in a neutral element, like us.
It's not bad to put enchantments of different elements on a stone, it's just not possible. With the exception being neutral, non elemental stuff. You guys could go on any stone.
>>
No. 906349 ID: 15a025
File 153920675179.png - (5.71KB , 800x600 , 74.png )
906349

> put that rock back in the hole and put the fire poker back where you found it. Then hide that stone until you can get it to the cops tomorrow.
I try to un-mangle the fire poker and cover up the hole. There's still bend marks on the poker, but it doesn't look like the fire place has been used in awhile. I'll sneak the enchantment stone down to my room in put it in my briefcase for now.
>>
No. 906350 ID: 15a025
File 153920685060.png - (4.30KB , 800x600 , 75.png )
906350

Now to take care of something else that's been bugging me all day, this crap in my sweater pocket!

I flick the dead bolt in place on my door and empty out my pocket.
I've got:

Binoculars
Cell Phone
A Letter for my sister
Police Camera with a roll of film
Radio microphone with the light off.

I should probably put some of this stuff in my night stand for-
>>
No. 906351 ID: 15a025
File 153920688087.png - (4.19KB , 800x600 , 76.png )
906351

Wait, a letter for my sister?
>>
No. 906413 ID: 91ee5f

>>906351
Oh! I remember who that’s from! It’s from that weirdo you and Marsh met in front of the coffee place!

He wanted you to give that letter to Sugar and you said you’d try to give it to her when she’s sober enough to read it!

Now might be a good time to give it to her before she decides to get drunk again!
>>
No. 906419 ID: 91ee5f

>>906413
Now I’m remembering more details! It was a Hyena guy that said he was “An acquaintance from the next town over.” and said to make sure Sugar got the letter and she reads it tonight!

Marsh already checked it, so it’s safe to give to Sugar. And don’t open it! Respect your sister’s privacy!
>>
No. 906482 ID: b1b4f3

Yeah get that letter over to her pronto.
>>
No. 906531 ID: 891b91

I have a bad feeling about that letter, but you might as well give it to Sugar and hope for the best.
>>
No. 906736 ID: 15a025
File 153946827127.png - (4.90KB , 800x600 , 77.png )
906736

>It was a Hyena guy that said he was “An acquaintance from the next town over.”
>I have a bad feeling about that letter, but you might as well give it to Sugar and hope for the best.
>Now might be a good time to give it to her before she decides to get drunk again!
>Yeah get that letter over to her pronto.
I grab the letter and rush upstairs.
Candy: "Sugar?!"

It's a few moments before she replies.
Sugar: "In my office!"

I walk in and- why are there so many holes in the wall?

Sugar: "That wasn't an invitation to come in! What do you want, I'm on the phone here!"

Candy: "Oh sorry to intrude. Look I forgot to give you your mail earlier so here."

Sugar: "Since when did I give you the key to the- yeah just a second!"
>>
No. 906738 ID: 15a025
File 153946839762.png - (4.83KB , 800x600 , 78.png )
906738

She sets the phone down on her massive desk.

Sugar: "When did I give you the mailbox key?"

Candy: "You didn't. Some 'acquaintance from the next town over' gave it to me to deliver to you."

Sugar: "How does he-"

Sugar: "I'm going to have to call you back. Yeah? Well tell that one to Slick, because he just dropped me a letter!"

She slams the phone on down to hang up.

Sugar: "How does he know you?"

Candy: "I don't know! This hyena guy came up to me and Marsh at the mall wanting us to deliver this to you!"
>>
No. 906739 ID: 15a025
File 153946841483.png - (4.72KB , 800x600 , 79.png )
906739

She grabs the letter off her desk and seems to just skim through it.
>>
No. 906741 ID: 15a025
File 153946847867.png - (4.91KB , 800x600 , 80.png )
906741

Sugar: "For a second there, I thought this was going to be trouble. "

Candy: "Then what is it?"

Sugar: "Just another phone call I'm going to have to make in the morning. Not sure why he didn't just call me in the first place? Anyway in the future, try and stay clear of him."

Candy: "Why, who is he?"

Sugar: "One of my biggest costumers. He runs a mafia or something and sells my goods in another town.

Candy: "A mafia or something?? Wait, you're selling drugs to the mafia to sell in another town!"

Sugar: "You didn't think I could afford this place just running a candy store and a bar did you?"
>>
No. 906751 ID: b1b4f3

Honestly, yes, because it's a shithole.
>>
No. 906753 ID: 891b91

>>906741
>"You didn't think I could afford this place just running a candy store and a bar did you?"
The holes in the wall and the lack of any functional plumbing whatsoever suggest otherwise!

>mafia
Honestly, Candy, do you really want to risk getting mixed up in this kind of stuff? I know you used to live a bit... wilder, but it seems like you've been trying to stay on the straight and narrow, for the most part. Not to mention that it's pretty disturbing that mobsters know who you are by sight. Marsh and Sharcole seem like very nice people, and I know Sugar is family, but I'm not sure this is worth the risk.

Then again, the risk is probably there regardless of whether you try to avoid it or not; if Sugar were to (perhaps inadvertently) make enemies with these mafia types, they could still go after you to punish her, no matter how cleanly you live.
>>
No. 906764 ID: 91ee5f

>>906741
>"You didn't think I could afford this place just running a candy store and a bar did you?"
Considering how much of a miracle it is that a gust of wind hasn’t blown this place down from the terrible condition it’s in, yes! I thought you got this place really cheap and all you needed was a candy store and a bar to afford this place!
>>
No. 906783 ID: 094652

"Sugar, this place is a dump, and the drugs you keep are low-grade swill. How much are you making from the mafia? Because you're not getting paid enough to live like this just as a front."
>>
No. 907083 ID: 15a025
File 153965696467.png - (4.90KB , 800x600 , 81.png )
907083

>Honestly, yes, because it's a shithole.
>The holes in the wall and the lack of any functional plumbing whatsoever suggest otherwise!
>Considering how much of a miracle it is that a gust of wind hasn’t blown this place down from the terrible condition it’s in, yes! I thought you got this place really cheap and all you needed was a candy store and a bar to afford this place!
Candy: "There is no way this place cost you that much cash. There's no plumbing-"

Sugar: "We've got running water."

Candy: "Then why don't we have a bathroom!"

Sugar: "It needs to be completely redone. The floors are rotted and moldy in there, the shower is just rust, the toilet is missing-"

Candy: "How does a toilet go- anway, my point still stands. How does a mansion with a rotted out bathroom and holes everywhere cost so much you have to work for the mafia to afford it!"

Sugar: "Buying it was cheap. Keeping this place standing and running isn't. You know how much cash I've spent fixing this place up? You should have seen it when I first moved in here."

Candy: "It looks like you just moved in here! What have you even done?"

Sugar: "This office here was just a giant hole in the floor if that gives you an idea."

Candy: "What about the holes in the wall there?"

Sugar: "Those weren't there when I moved in."

Candy: "Then-"

Sugar: "Yeah yeah, bullet holes. You know how many times I've made other people replace that window?"
>>
No. 907084 ID: 15a025
File 153965704368.png - (3.97KB , 800x600 , 82.png )
907084

> Honestly, Candy, do you really want to risk getting mixed up in this kind of stuff? I know you used to live a bit... wilder, but it seems like you've been trying to stay on the straight and narrow, for the most part.
From the sounds of it, she doesn't really want me getting involved with the mafia either? Or at least the hyena guy. I don't mind helping out with the bar or the candy store, but I'm not sure I want to go back to selling "candy canes" again. I'm kind of surprised peppermints and candy canes in general haven't been banned here yet either. When I was dealing in college, four towns just flat out banned all the stuff used to make them. Didn't stop me from driving further to stock up on stuff though.

>Not to mention that it's pretty disturbing that mobsters know who you are by sight.
Somehow everyone seems to think I look like my sister, even though she has that ugly mop on her head. I could kind of see him thinking I was related to Sugar, but I don't think he'd just hand me a letter like that based on an assumption like that. Knowing her, she's probably got drunk once and told him about me and maybe even Pepper.

>Then again, the risk is probably there regardless of whether you try to avoid it or not; if Sugar were to (perhaps inadvertently) make enemies with these mafia types, they could still go after you to punish her, no matter how cleanly you live.
Yeah then there's that too, as well as the reverse. They could go after me if I turn on her. I'm not sure if their relationship goes that far or not though. Or if she wouldn't come after me herself.
>>
No. 907085 ID: 15a025
File 153965706992.png - (4.91KB , 800x600 , 83.png )
907085

Sugar snaps me out of my train of thought.
Sugar: "Alright, get to bed Candy. We got a busy day of catching up tomorrow."

Candy: "Catching up on what?"

Sugar: "Orders. It's going to be tricky because I've got people picking up actual candy orders on top of those other 'candy orders' if you catch my drift. With Sharcole being out of it whatever I'm going to really need your help keeping things from going bad. Last thing I need is for her to slip up and give some school teacher a box of spiked candy."
>>
No. 907090 ID: b1b4f3

>>907085
Tell her you can handle all the normal candy business if she wants.
>>
No. 907093 ID: 891b91

>>907090
Seconded, don't start dealing for her if you don't want to.
>>
No. 907167 ID: 91ee5f

>>907083
>bullet holes
Shit! Duck down next to the desk!

I don’t care if nobody’s shooting right now, she just said this room gets shot at a lot, so it’s better to be safe than sorry!

>>907090
I agree!

And explain that you don’t know who wants what or what the code names for the special candy are! You’d end up messing something up and giving someone the wrong thing! So she needs to bring in someone else to handle all of the special candy while you handle the regular candy for the normal customers.
>>
No. 907442 ID: 15a025
File 153992607583.png - (4.86KB , 800x600 , 84.png )
907442

>Duck down next to the desk! I don’t care if nobody’s shooting right now, she just said this room gets shot at a lot, so it’s better to be safe than sorry!
We're the only people and house around for miles. I feel like those bullet holes are probably from angry
"guests" or "friends" she's had over.

>Tell her you can handle all the normal candy business if she wants.
>Seconded, don't start dealing for her if you don't want to.
Candy: "I'll help out at the candy store with the regular orders. I'm not dealing with anything other than just normal candy."

>explain that you don’t know who wants what or what the code names for the special candy are!
Candy: "I don't know who's who or what they want. I don't even know what your names for everything is!"

Sugar: "Pff, that's easy. Sharcole's got a list and knows everyone. I could make you a list of names-"

Candy: "I'm just selling candy tomorrow. That's it. I'm not dealing."

She lets out an over exaggerated groan.
Sugar: "Seriously, who are you and where's my sister?"

She lets out a sigh.
Sugar: "Just try and keep the peace tomorrow then alright? Not saying anyone's going to try pulling anything, but some of them might need a reminder."
>>
No. 907443 ID: 15a025
File 153992617180.png - (4.18KB , 800x600 , 85.png )
907443

She pulls out a gun and sets it on the desk.

Sugar: "Your pocket knife isn't going to do you much good behind a counter. Even has a hoof lock on the grip so you can hold the stupid thing."

As worried as I am about her just giving me a loaded gun to, she's got a point. I need something more than just a knife to protect myself. Something isn't- wait!
>>
No. 907445 ID: 15a025
File 153992635481.png - (4.89KB , 800x600 , 86.png )
907445

Candy: "Hold it. Are there customers coming in tomorrow that carry a gun with them?"

Sugar: "You think anyone buying drugs in this town can afford a gun? You don't need to worry about that crap."

Candy: "The bullet holes in your wall say otherwise."

Sugar: "Those came courtesy of my friends outta town. But, that's a story for another night and another reason to stay away from them."

Her phone starts ringing.

Sugar: "Alright it's getting late and I've got phone calls to make."

Candy: "Yeah, whatever. Goodnight."
>>
No. 907446 ID: 15a025
File 153992642072.png - (5.21KB , 800x600 , 87.png )
907446

I leave Sugar's office and head back down stairs.

Is there anything else I should do before crawling into bed for the night?
>>
No. 907457 ID: ee2d6e

Check and familiarize yourself with the gun if you intend to use it. Start by removing the magazine and clearing the chamber so you don't have any negligent discharges. Either there's a button on the side or a lever on the bottom to drop the magazine, and then you just pull the slide all the way back a couple times while looking into the ejection port and making sure the chamber's empty. Then you can start practising slowly pulling the trigger while maintaining a sight picture with the empty gun until you're confident you can do it without jerking the gun to the side.
>>
No. 907466 ID: 094652

Practice reloading the gun, and keep the chamber empty when you go to bed. I don't trust the safety switch of a mafia custom, and you do not want this thing going off in your pocket.
>>
No. 907467 ID: 91ee5f

>>907446
You do not have room to carry that in your pockets with how many things you’re already carrying!

And you know how good Officer Nibbles’ sense of smell is! If she decides to come get some candy again, she’s going to smell the gunpowder from the gun and know you have it! That’ll be harder to explain away compared to last time with the mashed cigarette on the counter and some candies with tiny amounts of alcohol in them!
>>
No. 907589 ID: 891b91

>>907467
That's a very good point. I think the best way to handle this possibility is to keep the gun stowed under the counter at the candy shop and treat it as store property. It doesn't guarantee that there won't be trouble, but you should be able to pass it off as a defensive measure (which it already is) in case someone tries to rob the shop. It seems like the area's having some pretty significant crime problems as it is, so it'd probably be pretty believable.

Alternatively, you could ask the police whether you could get a police-issued firearm from them, for the sake of self-defense while you carry out your duties as an undercover officer.

Anyway, as for what to do for the evening, it's probably time to get some shuteye.
>>
No. 907656 ID: 15a025
File 154005778568.png - (5.21KB , 800x600 , 88.png )
907656

>You do not have room to carry that in your pockets with how many things you’re already carrying!
If I leave the binoculars here I've got enough room.
Oh shoot! I forgot to put all that stuff away. I better go hide that stuff before Marsh or someone decides to come into my room for something.
>>
No. 907657 ID: 15a025
File 154005783558.png - (4.16KB , 800x600 , 89.png )
907657

I head over to my room and pack all my stuff into my new nightstand.

>you know how good Officer Nibbles’ sense of smell is! If she decides to come get some candy again, she’s going to smell the gunpowder from the gun and know you have it!
Considering what's going on at the store tomorrow, I might have bigger things to worry about if she decides to show up.

>I think the best way to handle this possibility is to keep the gun stowed under the counter at the candy shop and treat it as store property. It doesn't guarantee that there won't be trouble, but you should be able to pass it off as a defensive measure (which it already is) in case someone tries to rob the shop. It seems like the area's having some pretty significant crime problems as it is, so it'd probably be pretty believable.
That works too. I'll have to make sure I don't really leave the counter though, or stuff it back in my pocket when I do.
>>
No. 907658 ID: 15a025
File 154005789798.png - (4.39KB , 800x600 , 90.png )
907658

>Check and familiarize yourself with the gun if you intend to use it. Start by removing the magazine and clearing the chamber so you don't have any negligent discharges.
Guess it's a good thing I'm a walking cotton swab. She didn't give anything to clean it with.

Before I mess around with this thing at all, I double check safety's on and take out the magazine. With that out, I take off my sweater and use my pocket knife to cut off a little bit of wool.
>>
No. 907659 ID: 15a025
File 154005792824.png - (4.33KB , 800x600 , 91.png )
907659

After double checking the chambers empty and getting my make shift "cotton swab" I start cleaning the chamber out. My once creamy colored swab of wool comes out looking like a lump coal. Guess I'm going to be chopping off some more wool.
>>
No. 907661 ID: 15a025
File 154005796978.png - (4.36KB , 800x600 , 92.png )
907661

After a few swabs I get it cleaned out.

>start practising slowly pulling the trigger while maintaining a sight picture with the empty gun until you're confident you can do it without jerking the gun to the side.

Getting used to holding this is going to take some time. I better start now when there isn't any pressure. I press my hoof into the little grip on the side and twist it into place. It's awkward, but at least I can hold it. I don't have much around in here to use a sight picture, so I just improvise for now and use the base of my lamp shade.
>>
No. 907662 ID: 15a025
File 154005799655.png - (4.40KB , 800x600 , 93.png )
907662

>Practice reloading the gun

Afterwards, I start trying to reload it a couple of times when something hits me. She didn't give any extra ammo to reload this with. Hopefully I'm not going to need more than what she gave me.
>>
No. 907663 ID: 15a025
File 154005802209.png - (4.26KB , 800x600 , 94.png )
907663

>it's probably time to get some shuteye.
>keep the chamber empty when you go to bed. I don't trust the safety switch of a mafia custom, and you do not want this thing going off in your pocket.
I'll just keep the gun in my nightstand with everything else. Before going to bed, I practice getting my hoof in and out of the grip a few more times.

Goodnight earring ghosts!
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