• Published 12th Apr 2016
  • 14,952 Views, 12,558 Comments

Three More Things! - Tatsurou



Uncle Chan tries to balance running an antique shop, fighting demons, and being a Chi Wizard with being a loving Uncle to his nephew, his somewhat removed niece...and three little ponies who drive him straight up the wall.

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Stone Secret

Scootaloo frowned as she stared at what she had laid out before her. If anyone asked her, she would say that she hated puzzles and riddles, but that wasn't entirely true. She loved finding puzzles and riddles that needed solving, and she loved solving them. What she hated was situations like what she encountered now, where she had just enough information to start solving a riddle, but not enough to actually find a solution.

Jade, Sweetie Belle, and Apple Bloom were helping Uncle unravel the nature of the Horse Talisman's power through research. That is to say, Sweetie Belle was helping research, Apple Bloom was collating the information, and Jade - who couldn't read the older of the texts they were researching from - was making sure everyone ate and drank something so they could maintain their focus. Scootaloo, however, was approaching the same thing, but from a different direction.

Uncle had once said that whoever acquired all 12 Talismans would achieve untold power. Ever since the Horse Talisman's description had been so vague, that detail had been bothering her. She had set up her research on the shop desk, so she could man the shop while she worked. Laid out in front of her were paper cutouts of each of the eight Talismans they'd encountered, and a list of the powers each Talisman provided, along with the inscriptions the'd managed to transcribe. She wished she had the text from the back of the Dragon Talisman to work from, as she felt it might have given her some clue as to how the Talismans were supposed to be combined.

"Combustion..." she mumbled, setting the Dragon cutout at the top of the circle again. "Invisibility, Super Strength, Super Speed, Levitation...Astral Projection and Animation." She stared at the seven cutouts she'd laid out, then lifted up the Horse cutout. "Where do you fit in all this? I've got more than half the puzzle. I should be able to see enough of it to start logicking out the other pieces. How does it all come together?" After a time, she slammed the cutout down angrily and turned back to the descriptions, grumbling to herself. "I hope Jackie gets back with the new Talisman soon. Maybe that'll give me more to work with." Hearing the shop bell ring, she looked up eagerly. "Speak of the devil!" she called out happily. "Uncle Jackie! You're ba..." Her voice died on her lips as she raced forward, coming to a halt as she spotted his right ring finger...grey, hard, and lifeless. "UNCLE!" she screamed out in terror.

Everyone from the back room came racing out at Scootaloo's scream. Uncle took one look at Jackie's hand and screamed, "AIYAH!"


Jackie laid out the story swiftly for everyone, having insisted that no one interrupt since time was of the essence. "I have until six AM," he explained. "Valmont's men will be waiting at the Coit Tower with the antidote."

"W...what are we going to do?" Apple Bloom whimpered, reaching out towards Jackie's hand.

"Wait!" Jade gasped out, grasping Apple Bloom's hoof. "If anything in the poison is plant based, your out of control magic might accelerate it!" Apple Bloom let out a horrified whimper at the very thought, sinking in on her self as Audrey wrapped himself around her.

"Good thinking Jade," Uncle complimented. "As for what we do...riddle of the Horse Talisman can wait. I will make an antidote! Sweetie Belle, you will assist me! Apple Bloom, fetch any magical plants you have grown that are harvest ready!"

As Uncle led Jackie, Sweetie Belle, and Apple Bloom back into the back room, Scootaloo went back to her work, pushing the cutouts around, having trouble focusing now. Jade, meanwhile, paced angrily back and forth. Both of them groaned every time they heard a strange noise or an agonized choke from the back room...or Uncle or Sweetie Belle cursing.

Finally, after the sound of something bursting into flame, Jade threw up her hands in frustration. "I can't take it anymore!" she screamed out angrily. Turning, she started gathering various items.

"What do you think you're doing?" Scootaloo demanded irritably.

"The Dark Hand will make a trade of the five Talismans in Section 13 for the antidote," Jade explained, determination filling her voice. "I'm going to go make that trade."

"You're just going to walk in and swipe them?" Scootaloo offered sarcastically.

"I have to do something!" Jade snapped out. "I'll figure something out."

"And what about those security systems?" Scootaloo countered angrily. "Think about what it'll do to Jackie, to the rest of us, if you get killed doing this! You don't have save points in the real world, Jade! This isn't a game!" Scootaloo's eyes widened as she suddenly realized something.

Jade stared at her friend. "Scoot...?"

"A game...that's it!" She turned back to the cutouts. "I was looking at it all wrong!" She grabbed the Ox cutout. "Bull's Strength!" She grabbed the Snake cutout. "Greater Invisibility!" She continued through each of them, giving them names from tabletop gaming. "Haste! Fireball! Spirit Walk! Create Golem! They're not super powers, they're spells!"

"How does that help us-" Jade began.

"If activated, the Noble Horse expels all alien forces from within," Scootaloo interrupted, rounding on Jade as she quoted the Horse Talisman description. "You've played more video games than me. Off the top of your head, what spell does that sound like flavor text for?"

"Esuna," Jade responded immediately. "But I don't see-"

"And what does Esuna do?" Scootaloo pressed.

Jade rolled her eyes. "It's the cure-all for status effects," she grumbled. "Like paralysis, sleep, poison...and..." Her eyes widened. "And stone!" Grabbing the Horse Talisman off the table, she raced into the back room. As she got there, Jackie's body was going into another paroxysm as the poison started to turn another part of his body to stone. Rushing forward, Jade slammed the Talisman into Jackie's right hand as his middle finger started to change. The stone ran up from the tip of his finger towards his palm...until the transformation brushed the Talisman. The Horse flared with light.

When the light faded, Jackie had returned to normal, no sign of stone transformation. "I...wha?" he gasped out in surprise.

"Aiyah!" Uncle cried out in amazement. "Horse Talisman is the healer! Jade, how did you know?"

"Don't thank me," Jade responded modestly as Apple Bloom leapt into Jackie's arms, burrowing into his embrace. "Thank Scootaloo. She's the one who logicked out what it had to be, once she looked at each of the Talismans as a spell."

"You're the one who put it together that the Horse description meant a healing power," Scootaloo added as she came in. "And figured out how to use Jackie's transformation to activate it."

"You both did excellent job," Uncle praised, rubbing both their heads affectionately. "I was right to have you two work together."

"So...what about the Dark Hand agents?" Sweetie Belle asked curiously. "Won't they still be waiting at Coit Tower for the Talismans?"

Jackie grinned softly. "Yes, they will. I think you know how to handle that, Sweetie."

Giggling, Sweetie Belle opened up her phone and went down her speed dial list.

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