NeoCrystal Elegy By AYolland

Instruments: Tarot Deck

Game Description 

You traverse the barren pink covered city on a planet that has been laid to waste by the crystal salt. Explore the area, search for your goal, relive the memories of others, and avoid the oncoming storm.

Game Content Warnings 

These are content warnings that are from the game prompts and are present in all playthroughs.

Playthrough Content Warnings 

These are content warnings specific to this playthrough only.

Game Playthrough

Word Count: 1,471     Played: Nov 3, 2023



You feel oddly at peace here


King of Cups

A Library: Academic, Spiritual, overgrown collapsed, and eerie 

Phase 1: Wands

Minor: Seven of Wands, A crater. What used to be here? 
Major: The High Priestess: Inner guidance, thirst for knowledge, mystery 

Minor: Six of Wands, A memorial. Mummified wreaths, candles. Who is memorialized here? 

Minor: Ace of Wands, A Highway, abandoned vehicles. Where were they going? 
Major: The Hanged Man, Innocence, freedom, travel, foolishness 


I’ve reached the outskirts of the city, near the edge of Crater HB135. As previous reports have confirmed it is located in the center of downtown. I’m no geologist so I’m inclined to believe the reports that it's more of a sink-hole where the earth opened up after the crystals sucked all the water out of the ground. I’ll try to report what I see when the Memories trigger. 

There’s still the mummified wreaths just where all the people left them. Hard to believe all this happened hundreds of years ago seeing as everything is still so preserved in The Pink. There’s some names and portraits about, looks like mostly government officials and the like…. And I can see them now. Placing the wreaths on the ground. I’m holding a pair of gloves and I place them next to a portrait of an older man. I’m crying…. 

Previous reports stated a courthouse was one of the buildings in the affected area along with other government buildings. 

I’m continuing on down the roads, most of which are… somewhat preserved. There’s a few cracks in the roads where the crystals have emerged and the entire thing is coated in The Pink, but it’s still traversable. 

There’s still plenty of abandoned cars and vehicles, and I even saw a bicycle a while back. If I remember the reports correctly most people couldn’t leave because of how many cars were on the roads at the time. Panicking people all trying to leave as fast as they can instead of in a more efficient manner. But I can’t blame them, looks like the city wasn’t set up to help a vast majority of people so they only had themselves to rely on. 

And… I can see myself running. Through the streets, after abandoning my car. People are shouting and running, carrying kids and pets and other supplies. Most of them are being consumed by the crystals and I’m falling, my legs withering and turning into dust… 

What a wretched place.

Phase 2: Cups

Minor: 3 of Cups: A food truck, What was the last meal made here? 
Major: The Devil, dependency, materialism, abuse 

Minor: Ace of Cups: A mural, covering windows and pipes. Whose work and why did they paint? 
Major: Death: letting go, transformation, unexpected upheaval

Minor: 5 of Cups: A list of names and dates, each year they come back. What were these reunions like? 
Major: The Empress nurturing, beauty, nature, harmony, art


I’ve made my way further into the downtown area of the city and I’ve stopped a bit to rest inside an abandoned hot-dog truck. Crazy to think we still have these things. Cheap food is cheap food, but I’m looking at the prices and, can you believe it!, they were charging ten times what they are now! Exploitation never ends and when you’ve got hungry people in the rich downtown I guess you can charge whatever you want.

The Pink’s got all the innards of the place coated and crystalized. It almost looks like an art piece seeing one of the dogs laid out with all the fillings and coated and transformed. I can still make out some of the awards this little stand once got. Looks like they got some city wide best stand prize 10 years running. That’s probably why they jacked up the prices. 

The Pink hasn’t faded the photos so I can still see all of them smiling and holding the ribbons. They look happy. I hope they made it out.

I can see them, now, standing all around me as we get our picture taken. I’m happy, so happy. I’m not thinking about the money or the increasing cost of supplies and food, but I’m just so joyful as I put my hand on my son’s shoulder and we all laugh for the camera…


There’s a mural across the street on one of the surviving buildings. It’s mostly covered in sand crystals and The Pink, but I can still make out a little bit of it. It must have been painted after everything started since I can see a person transforming into a crystal. According to the data this city was hit around the middle of the catastrophe, so it might have been a protest, or an awareness piece about the happenings elsewhere. 

It’s hard to tell since most of it’s covered.  ...But I can see myself painting it. Holding the spray cans. I’m so angry. No one is doing anything about this. The entire planet is going to be covered in these crystals and turned into dust and no one cares because it’s not ‘cost effective.’ It will cost them more money to cover this piece, but I’ll paint it again and again and again until it costs less to save human lives.

Phase 3: Coins

Minor: Ace of Coins: You find what you came for, exactly as you wanted it. What does it look like? How do you feel? 
Major: The Star, Hope, inspiration, healing, positivity 

Minor: Eight of Coins: A chair. What does it feel like to sit in it? 
Major: The Wheel of Fortune: Destiny, change, fortune, chance 

Minor: 4 of Coins: An office, papers, growing crystals, Who worked here? What power did they have? 
Major: The Emperor: Stability, structure, authority 


I’ve made my way into the library and down towards the special collections. Most of the books have been completely encrusted in the crystals and would need special equipment to read them. Not sure if it’s worth it though, the public collection looks like most of these books have been digitized elsewhere. 

I had to smash one of the crystals that was covering the entrance to the back. Don’t lecture me on safety, I used as much precaution as I can, and the suit’s still fine. 

Seems like nothing was safe from The Pink, even down here the sand’s coating the floor. Lucky for me one of the locked doors was destroyed with the growing crystals and I was able to get into the more protected areas. I had a good once over, since the previous report wasn’t quite right, but in the end I found a box that contained all the right stuff. 

I took it back to the head librarian’s office. It’s still covered in the growing crystals, but looks like they had a big fancy chair that was mostly free from The Pink. I was able to sit in it when I went through the goods. 

It was still soft. I thought about them and the last time they probably sat in this chair.

…I was doing papers, going through the catalogs, double checking what needed repairs and budgeting and other numbers. So many numbers that my coffee had grown cold while I took a sip. It was disgusting but I drank it anyway. I can hear my coworker sneezing in the other room and the janitor vacuuming in the hall.

The desk drawers, the ones I can open, have papers in them, but they’ve all faded to white sheets.  

But to the goods. Everything was inside, all ten volumes, and most of them don’t have any large crystals on them. They could use a good cleaning but I think it will be fairly easy to restore them to a proper state. 

I haven’t opened any of them, I don’t want to expose them to The Pink’s Light but it looks like they haven’t been disturbed in a long time since the box was covered in the sand, so here’s hoping that the ink’s still legible. 

Phase 4: Sword

Minor: Knight of Swords: You will not die here. How will you survive? 
Major: The Sun, optimism, confidence, truth

Minor: 3 of Swords: A shard flies into your shoulder. What does the pain remind you of?
Major: The Fool, carelessness, foolishness, travel

Minor: Six of Swords: The sound of crystal rain grows louder. What does it remind you of? 
Major: The Devil, secrecy, violence, hopelessness. 


BAD! I’m in immediate danger! Fuck!

I was careless. I thought I had enough time to get from the library back to the ship before the storm hit, but obviously not!

The rain came much quicker than before, and it sounded like the roar of the engines when there’s not enough fuel. I know that sound all too well.  

One of the damned things came crashing down and pierced through the suit. I managed to break through a window and into a building while the heaviest crystals came raining through. Luckily it was my good shoulder and not the one I keep dislocating. Still hurts the same. I patched the suit back up with some quick-seal foam that should last until I get back aboard the ship. 

I think the storm’s ending soon though. The sounds are starting to fade, and I can see out the window that there’s more light than before. 

I’ll just have to haul ass back to the ship and get this thing out of me before it mummifies the rest of me. Damn books better be worth more than the surgery cost. 

Phase 5: Major Arcana

Card: The Hanged Man: Feeling Trapped, Needing Release. Letting go. 


I’m alive. I’m on the ship. And I don’t have what I came for. 

I couldn’t carry the box with my shoulder all fucked up so I had to leave it behind. I tried putting it under some rubble and other shit to protect it from oncoming storms, but I don’t know if 

  1. It will be protected enough
  2. If I can find it again
  3. I’ll be able to carry it again

I wish I had brought just one of them. That would have been something. 

Something beautiful was destroyed today because of me.

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