New entry for the poll driven story “The Fall of Almerry Keep”

You can find the new entry below the break or read this part of the story in its current entirety HERE.

* * *

“Dunla, I think we’re lost,” Gwynaetha said, pushing her way through a bit of thick underbrush. “Nothing in the place makes sense. It’s like the forest keeps shifting and changing around us.”

“It is,” Resi said, tapping her staff on the ground and making a patch of undergrowth that had been slowly creeping towards them pull back. The top of her staff radiated green light that grew gradually brighter as she strained against the magic she was fighting.

“What are you doing?” Emiko asked, biting her nails nervously.

“Trying… to keep… the forest… back…” Resi said, gritting her teeth from exertion. With a grunt of pain she stumbled back, the light at the top of her staff dying. The underbrush she’d been pushing back began to quickly creep towards them, easily recovering the ground it had lost.

“Quick, everyone, this way,” Dunla called out, drawing her sword and cutting a way through the underbrush till they were out of it. Once clear of it she put her sword away and threw her head back, groaning in frustration. “It’s like this place knows where we want to go and is doing everything it can to direct us somewhere else.”

“I’m pretty sure that’s exactly what it’s doing,” Resi said weakly, resting on her staff for support.

Emiko rushed to her side and placed a hand on the tall Orcish girl’s chest. Pink light radiated from her hand and when she pulled it away Resi looked refreshed.

“Thanks, Emiko. I don’t know what we’d do without our healer.”

“It’s nothing,” the shy Kittaran girl said, blushing and looking away with her big fluffy pink tail lashing behind her.

“How long have we been lost in here?” Gwynaetha asked, holding her wand out and making the tip light up like a lantern. “Shouldn’t the sun be rising soon?”

“I don’t think it works like that in here,” Dunla replied, grunting and kicking away a vine that had been trying to wrap around her ankle. “I don’t think we see sunlight unless this place wants us to.”

“Great,” Gwynaetha grumbled. “So we just have to keep stumbling around in the dark like this?”

“But you have your wand,” Emiko pointed out.

“Yeah, but the light spell keeps fizzling out,” she said, just as the illumination coming from her wand began to flicker. “SEE! GAH! This is so annoying.” She grunted, stumbling forward on a root as the light died completely for a moment. “Come on you stupid frick’n wand. Light up!”

The others could see through the dimly illuminated forest that she was angrily shaking her wand.

“Gwynee, please be careful,” Dunla called out. “You’re pretty far away from the rest of us. If something-” The stocky Battlemage’s wand lit up. “Don’t!” Dunla called out, too late.

“Don’t what?” Gwynaetha ask as she stepped into a patch of big puffy red mushrooms. They exploded, expelling a thick spore cloud that flowed unnaturally up to her face. She began coughing and trying to wave the cloud away, then remembered her want and summoned a blast of air that blew the spore cloud harmlessly away from her and her friends.

“That tasted really weird,” she groaned. She groaned again, throwing her free arm up to hold her chest. “Something’s wrong with my breasts,” she told the others.

Resi chuckled. “What breasts? For a girl as bottom-heavy as you are you’re almost as flat-chested as me.”

“That’s very inappropriate,” Emiko chided her. “And mean? I think it’s mean.” She stomped her foot. “Things like that always confuse me since I’ve never been in heat.”

“Emiko, please don’t stomp your foot like that again,” Dunla said, her voice suddenly serious. “Everyone, please stay still. Gwynee, are you okay?”

“I don’t know,” she said, holding her chest and wincing as the light coming from her wand died again. “I think that spore cloud did something to me. My breasts feel weird. Really sore and tender all of a sudden and very, very warm. I— Oh!”

“I’m coming,” Emiko called out.

“Don’t,” Dunla said, grabbing the Kittaran’s arm and pulling her back.

“But she needs healing!”

“But we can’t see where we’re going. There might be more of those mushrooms.”

“Dunla,” Gwynaetha whined, “I don’t want to alarm you but… But I think my breasts are growing.”

How big will the breasts of those hit by the spore clouds grow? (Choose 1 option from this poll)

Who else gets hit by a spore cloud? (Choose 1 option from this poll)

What happens next? This choice will potentially be heavily effected by the previous polls. (Choose up to 7 options from this poll)

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