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Found 581 results

  1. I'm speaking in the context of the Friendship is Magic canon, does Twilight have the potential to turn into a villain like Nightmare Moon and Daybreaker? Since Luna, Celestia, and Twilight have been rulers of Equestria, have flowing manes, are taller than the average pony, are alicorns, and have the responsibility of raising the sun and moon, is seems likely that Twilight would also have a potential evil alternate form like Celestia and Luna. Twilight's evil alternate form could be similar to Daybreak in the sense that she didn't become a reality but her potential to become a reality was there as seen in Starlight's dream.
  2. For being the final 2 part finale, I feel like it has the biggest number of problems. First, I think why Tirek couldn't use Discord's magic because he wasn't strong enough/powerful enough in comparison to when he did in the season 4 finale Chrysalis calling Grogar a goat when he's a ram when Discord say's "Your welcome." and everypony turns to look at him they forgot to remove a red arrow on one of the guards indicating to turn her head Tirek took the magic from the Pillars they still had their cutie marks Luna's voice coming from Celestia Chrysalis calling Tirek a minotaur when he's a centaur Discord and Tirek mispronouncing cretin when Cozy Glow say's "Their right there!" she is missing her horn and Hyper Sonic's voice.
  3. We know that Celestia and Luna are immortal and possibly Twilight, Cadence and Flurry Heart as well, but maybe non-alicorns could live extremely long such as Granny Smith and possibly the rest of the Gold Horseshoe Gals. Because Granny Smith in "Family Appreciation Day" called herself a "young filly" but when the founding of Ponyville she looked more like a teenage/young mare but the founding of Ponyville was over 200 Years ago according to Twilight in "Winter Wrap Up" said "Ponyville was started by earth ponies, so for hundreds of years they've never used magic to wrap up winter" the key term being "for hundreds of years" so Granny Smith at her youngest during "Winter Wrap Up" is over 200 years old.
  4. Between Dark and Dawn marks the next chapter for the goal from the premiere: Celestia and Luna will retire, so the RM7 will take their place when they're ready. Capping the first half with this episode fits with the arc to a T, especially with the sprinkling of continuity throughout the season thus far. The fact that Gail Simone, one of the best comic writers, was invited to write the first Royal Sister episode of the show fits the grand nature of what S9 has felt for the past several episodes. If you're going to wrap it up, do it while on top. Season 9A is the most consistently good half of the series: Over half of the first eleven were great, and what wasn't great was still good. Between Dark and Dawn increases the percentage of great episodes, and it's the third-best episode of Season 9, only behind both Sparkle's Seven and The Last Crusade. So why is it so great? Time to break it down! LO-FUCKING-L! I know little of Simone's comic writing, but according to Voice of Reason in his latest At the Screening, she has really excellent comedic timing. Well, easy to see why: BD&D's littered with hysterical moments throughout. Some of the best are the following: You know what's coming! Y'said what everybrony was thinking. Celestia could've been involved everywhere, and they went with a simple trespass of Tank's hungry great-great-great-great-great grandfather. While Luna and Celestia went on vacation for the first time in forever, several ponies reacted really hilariously. Three favorites include one stallion (Fond Feather) fainting as they walked by, one mare taking a selfie while Celly naps on her head, and a stallion backing away from them in the post office (a scene that I'll get to later). And it's easy to see why. They're the most famous ponies in all of Equestria, yet spend almost their whole lives cooped up in Canterlot Castle. So once you pass them when you least expect it…well, can y'blame 'em?! Dash incredulously asking why the swanifying ceremony was so important. In addition, this episode has a plethora of really goofy faces, taking full advantage of the cartoony medium. The fact that a very famous writer agreed to write for an episode and the overall absurd tone accompanying it gave the crew ample opportunity to go for it wherever. If I go through a lot of them, I'd be overloading slower browsers with all the pictures… Oh, what the hell! Y'know y'screwed up when Pinkie's cross. Feelin' a wee giddy there, I presume? Not feelin' the Aloha spirit, I guess. This episode is loaded with detail, and this tiny one is no exception. Celestia glaring at the goofed-up face of herself. Luna fighting off fits of laughter. The sculptor not having any clue about his screw-up. Luna doesn't like the thrills. That said, wait for that Luna face again. Goth Celestia? How amusing. Ruling a kingdom ain't easy, whether it's for celebrating the agency of swans or manipulating position of the sun and moon. That FACE is Twilight at her most exasperated. Of course, the funniest of them all. Recall Luna's face while riding Flim and Flam's roller coaster? That face comes back again, only this time with Celestia's excitement. With all these faces, it's easy to see how much fun the storyboarders and animators had with these scenes. But even with all of them, they don't ruin the moment when it gets serious or turn gross. They push and toe the point of being uncanny without crossing that imaginary border. Each time they make that face, it's laugh-out-load hilarious. The little scores and voices help time them, too. More to come later. Swanversion of expectations. One big strength of FIM that doesn't get much credit anymore is its ability to subvert expectations to the audience. Back in Season 1, the show built a reputation of flipping clichés on their head, such as making the prince a vain jackass, a female unicorn who works beyond the call of duty to deliver the best quality possible, or a realistic approach to sisterhood conflict. How does this episode do this? Via swans. Stereotyped as elegant and gracious, the swans here are not presented this way at all. They're impatient, and temperamental, and aggressive, all with enough agency to make the RM7 know their place. When they found out who was leading the gala, they honked crossly at them. These moat-wandering, spoiled, Pony version of castle gators commanded respect; when things didn't go their way, they let Twi and friends have it. Celestia knew it, and while they were on vacation, they have every reason to count on them to solve it without their help. Fancy seeing you here! As Twilight helps run Equestria while Celestia and Luna vacation, the first main thing they must accomplish is hosting the Swanifying Gala. But little did Twilight know that Fancy Pants (welcome back!), Jet Set, and Upper Crust would be there to help out. Granted, it was very dumb of her to reject their help without observing Celestia's scroll of instructions, yet this isn't purely her fault here. No one warned her that someone would come to assist her. For all she knew, they entered unannounced and had no idea how to help set it up. This was Twilight's first taste of how to run and eventually understanding how no one pony can run an important royal event, much less a kingdom, alone. Leaders need help. Some rudeness aside, Fancy Pants was quite reasonable, and his sternness was completely justified. Neither he nor his aristocratic clients entered Canterlot Castle because they felt like it. They're familiar with the Swanifying Gala and lead the Royal Swanifying Committee. He knows how it works, and with Upper and Jet helping him, they can delegate for the gala so it can all be finished on time. Twilight turning them away surprised them and implicated that they know more that they do. However, their disorganization setting up the gala meant ignoring other critical points of government. By falling back, they can't help negotiate a deal with the street sweepers and help the carpenters complete their own jobs. So why does this matter to Fancy? Canterlot trusts him; Celestia wouldn't hire him to lead the committee for no reason. Everyone there — even down to the swans, who are promised watercress — are his constituents. By getting involved and lending his voice to those more unfortunate than him, their complaints amplify. Fancy makes sure they are heard and the RM7 listen. Plus, as head of the committee, the gala adheres to specific formal standards. With his experience, he can accurately judge if it holds up to it or not and mandate changes if they don't. The tablecloth decorations clearly don't, so Rarity had to delegate someone else to help her. When they realized what to do, he lets his monocle down and trusts them to finish the job. While this may not be as entertaining as the A-plot, it's important, nevertheless. This is the first time they run a kingdom together, so this was good practice. Hiccups aside, they prove their worth for now. The AliTeam! But the meat of the story is Celestia and Luna. Now, this ain't the first time they shared a humongous portion of an episode. A Royal Problem dealt with long-standing friction between them, but for almost the entire 22-minute run, they acted like they hated each other, making up only after Starlight nearly scarred herself with a massive nightmare. Secondly, Starlight was the main character, not them. Most of it was in her point of view or sympathetic toward hers. Eight and a half seasons in, but FIM finally wrote them co-leading an episode. In addition, this was A Royal Problem written much, much better. How? Instead of making them forget how much they loved each other, they loved each other both in the beginning and at the end. Their fight slowly progressed, crescendoing at their private picnic, without degrading them. The many moments throughout the episode not only showed their relationship, but added touches to their characters. Going over milestones one by one. For long-time watchers like myself, the criticism of Celestia and Luna being inactive, whether via capture or not appearing at all, makes some level of sense, especially during the Chaos Theory and Cosmo arcs and movie. This episode, self-aware, pokes a little clever fun at itself, setting the tone of both the episode as well as their relationship. Even though they're major beings in Equestria, they're still sisters. Each time they "helped" was always as a team. This shot — as they exchange eye contact and hold hooves — reminds us in a very funny, over-the-top manner. Unless you read the comics, the show rarely explored them as a sibling bond and individual characters. Often they appear as royal heads only. That all changed with this one scene: How is this important? This is the first time the audience ever watched them act like actual sisters throughout a scene. They may be wearing regalia, but they're not behaving like royalty here. A tight connection between them is revealed, and nowhere nearly as muted as their hoof-holding during Slice of Life's moral recitation. Reading to bow their hair, they share immense excitement for the upcoming trip and offer grand ideas to share their moments together. That said, the episode subtly lays the groundwork for their eventual fight. They disagree with how to spend that time on vacation, and it's easy to see their perspectives. Just like the Fifty Shades series, Princess Celestia's day shift is SOOOOOOOO boring! On the other hand, Luna spends all night settling nightmares and other forms of dreams so they can sleep. So adventuring and relaxation, respectively, would be welcoming changes to their routines. But most importantly, Luna says this: Here, doubt clouds above them, potentially leading to an argument. However, just like the Angry Swans, Between Dark and Dawn subverts expectations once again, cutting off the idea to make way for a compromise. When it's possible to introduce disagreement (i.e., Celestia's uncertainty toward the Hawaiian shirts and forgetting to warn Luna of the snack's awful flavor), they go back to being caring sisters once more. "Lotta Little Things" is one of the best songs of the series. Similar in tone to The Smile Song, its happy jingle bounces off the sisters' hooves and into the viewer's mind, and the catchy lyrics accentuate its giddy tone. Also, the animation in two of the sequences is creative. Aside from the clever Easter Eggs (yes, I know about Capper, and Wicked's an awesome musical! ), by making the ground round like a globe, it reinforces the jolly mood of the song and shows how far they traveled to do those activities. Beyond just the great lyrics, it also subtly advances their conflict. At the start, they cooperate and have a world of fun together, and several of the shots are adorable! Celestia at Not-Toys-R-Us cuddling with all the humongous plushies as Luna giggles, Luna fails to create the illusion of holding onto the Great Horseshoe, Luna giggling at the Celestia & Luna sculpture shown earlier, Luna playing the banjo (with some of the most imaginative rhyming since Stop the Bats), and especially Celly and Luna huddling as Jack Pot and Big Bucks perform. <3 However, after the second chorus, they start subtly disagreeing more. Still seeking thrills, Celestia looks for more adventure. But Lethargic Luna is exhausted and wants to take a break. From that point forward, they begin to disagree on what "fun" is, like Celestia getting bored watching Wicked, Luna nearly dying from fright swimming with sharks and barreling down Neighagra Falls. The last lyrics succinctly point out this change in tone. The post office scene is one of the best of the entire episode. Beyond the zipline, this really showcases the vast difference of opinion of fun. Celestia's so used to it, but as stated in episode, Luna's traditionally asleep at night, so she never experiences it, so what's mundane to Celly excites her like a little filly. And this scene is loaded with comedy spots and the most adorable Luna has ever been. Luna prancing like a little filly while waiting. (Awwwwwww! ) A stallion slowly backing away from the line in surprise. DERPY as cute as ever! Luna wiggling her eyebrows at Celestia and singing "Wait for it…!". Bored, Celestia takes out her pocketwatch as the secondhand ticks. The whimsical "du-d-du" as she mails her postcard (which has their cutie marks on the written side!). "It's about the PROCESS!" Now who trusts the process more, her or 76ers fans? In addition to Luna at her most adorkable, it created a clever transition to make both of them stop seeing eye to eye and getting more and more angry at each other. They wanted to have fun, but with their sister there, the whole vacation was less joyful and more chore-ful. Their tug of war and ripping the bucket list in half symbolically marked the point where they stopped compromising with each other and quit enjoying being in each others' company. Their picnic scene was the major boiling point. The moment Simone built up over the first two-thirds. Luna's accusation was childish, but the episode shows us several moments to understand where she's coming from, such as taking part in more extreme events late in the song, getting extremely upset at her makeup being ruined, and then being forced to leave an opera in the middle of a performance. What did Celestia do? Shout and use the Canterlot voice in her face. So it's completely believable of her to feel unwanted. However, what she also did was accuse of her of believing Celestia wants nothing to do with her at all, and despite the huge disagreement with each other, she clearly doesn't want her to stay sealed in the moon. Celestia wants to enjoy life and not feel cooped up in the castle. But because their anger feels so raw, emotion dominates logic. Also, because that anger feels so down to earth, it's hard to watch. Compared to their fight from A Royal Problem, it wasn't petty. However, unlike Twilight and the gang from The Mean 6, they don't immediately make up. Spending several long hours alone, they're deservedly reminded of how much they need each other. Canterlot isn't complete with one Royal Sister. But as the fight shows the hardships of sisterhood, the late-night scene at the mountain proves they still love each other. Luna reminiscing the times Celestia taught her to watch the stars to search for the lucky ones allowed the story and characters themselves to close the conflict without rushing. They talked to each other, expressed why they felt the way they felt, and became a closer unit. Does this warm you? …I'll take that as a yes. Between Dark and Dawn is a phenomenal addition to FIM's growing lineup of great episodes. Great humor, great characterization, and great heart. Whether it's the B-Plot of The RM7 struggling to run a gala at the most inopportune time to Celestia and Luna distancing themselves and later reuniting, there's a lot to unpack and love. The little details add extra shape to the atmosphere and story, like ponies fainting or taking a selfie upon seeing them or Luna teasing Celestia in the post office, and help improve a good episode into a great one.
  5. Hello lovely ponies of the forums! I'm gong to be taking questions as the princess of the sun! You may ask anything you wish, as long as you keep the inquiries within the simple guidelines I've set forward: 1) please keep everything welcoming and friendly for others! 2) I'm not terribly interested in talking about ships- lets just not do that please (although sailing ships are quite alright ) *soaring down from above- almost falling, until catching myself at the last second* Hello dear ones *trots over to my big plush pillow and lies down- stretching*
  6. After many years of being a member of the fandom and avid reader I decided to begin my first dive into writing by putting together a short story. I'm fairly thick skinned so any and all criticism including subjective opinions are appreciated. Fimfiction link
  7. Assuming Celestia and Luna do retire after the Season 9 premiere, who is going to raise the sun and moon in their absence?
  8. Hi everypony Throughout the years, I've read several interesting posts such as "How fast was Rainbow Dash when she achieved Sonic Rainboom" or "Comparing scales in MLP universe to our universe". So I thought it would be interesting to do a project on studying how the Equestria solar system would look like. I started this project a year ago but now I finally wrote it in a readable fashion (by which I mean in a way that hopefully makes some sense ). I 'published' this paper here in picture form, but I also attached the original pdf file. Project_MLP.pdf. I hope you guys enjoy it and please do let me know if something I wrote doesn't seem to make sense or is not clear . Any form of feedback would be amazing and greatly appreciated . And let me know what are your thoughts on how the Equestria solar system should look like or any other thoughts you have on the role of Science in Equestria in general. (pictures can be enlarged upon clicking and zooming in in a new window ) (note: This is an updated version of a blog post on the same topic I did a year ago. Now that I looked back, there were a few (huge) mistakes there which I now corrected) Project_MLP.pdf
  9. Celestia and Luna talk with Starlight Glimmer about retiring from ruling Equestria. Author's Note: This was an idea that came up after watching the Season 9 trailer. Cover Art belongs to 90sigma on DeviantART. Retirement Talks
  10. Out of the 2 princess's that rule equestria for 1000's of years. Which one of them would be your mother? To be honest, I would pick Princess Celestia to be my mom and have Luna be my aunt!
  11. Having Starlight and Trixie together in the movie means it has to take pace after "No Second Prances" sense that's the first time they met. Not having the Royal Guard would explain why Celestia had Flash Magnus be the new drill sargent after season 7. Having it take place then would also explain why the changelings and the Pillers of Equestria were not in the movie but I'm not sure about the yaks but if the movie takes place after "No Second Prances" the mane 6 haven't been to Yakyakistan yet, unless you count Pinkie kinda. But griffins probably wouldn't want to help, and sense Ember just became Dragon Lord she probably needs to impose her rule, and that I don't think the ponies would trust all the dragons yet to listen to Ember. As for the map expanding, remember the map was broken after "The Cutie Re-Mark", which would also explain why it took so long and that Mount Aris needed to be repaired and the new train station there. As for Twilight saying "This happened while we were gone?" could be when they went after the Pony of Shadows instead of the Storm King. Why Sandbar mentioned The Storm King but not Queen Chrysalis nor the Pony of Shadows is that no pony would probably know that Chrysalis replaced the mane 6, the princesses, etc and that the Pony of Shadows never appeared in public, and why Apple Bloom was recapping the movie in "surf and/or Turf" was because The Storm King was what directly affected the hippogriffs. This I the best I can do saying it takes place between season 6 episodes 6-7 and explaining how. But there is one thing that contradicts all of this unless you can help me, the new throne room, it is possible they were working on a new throne room for a while and was finished in the movie in a different part of the castle and was going to turn the old throne room into something else but for what happened to the new one in the movie they had to go back to the old one while that was being repaired, but the whole of Canterlot got repaired when they retuned all the magic at the end of the movie? Write below if you can think of any reason why Celestia and Luna would still be using the old throne room until season 8.
  12. Celestia... ah Celestia. The princess that is the SOLE reason everything in the show happened. Whether it was directly, like giving her wings, or Indirectly, making Discord to try to capture Tirek which accidentally made Twilight lose the Golden Oak. She is someone who rarely ever directly intervenes on huge issues so giving her any class that does does so, like a knight is really unfitting. I was thinking healer but then Cadence came to mind and how she is the one who heals relationships and such. Back to Celestia, it is pretty hard to get a direct class on her. Because of that, I skipped to finding her Sonic class. This was SO MUCH EASIER. 1) She rarely flies. Fliers are known to do it super constantly and in Sonic Fliers are shown to fly when ever, not only to get around quickly but even when idling around at times. IE Tails and Cream. Since we rarely see that with Celestia, we can easily rule this out. Now what about Speed? When have you seen Celestia do stuff super fast? Yes when it comes to certain things Celestia may react fast, like the parasprite swarm thing but we never see her use her speed to the best potential. So Celestia is a Power Types. Now that we have that out of the way, How did I get ranger? Most of the shows biggest problems had Celestia in the back seat. She helped in some way but never directly. Examples: She sent Twilight to get friends, she didn't confront Nightmare Moon. She gave Twilight all her magic to deal with Tirek. So that's all I got. Do you agree? Disagree? Let me know below. The image was made by me but the Power Symbol and Celestia are vectors from Wiki (Or rather Google)
  13. Let's see... Why do I love Celestia and Luna more than anypony? Well first off, they both were the first MLP characters I discovered and the reason I became a fan in the first place. All it took to turn me was a video about Princesses and of course at first, I didn't think much of it because I thought it was simply just another girly show to avoid, but one day I actually took a chance and looked up pictures of Celestia and Luna and went and looked on the wikia for more information, only to discover how incredibly powerful and very beautiful they both were. One rose the sun and the other rose the moon? That's amazing. Even before MLP, I always had a thing for Princesses in the past, and being a Legend of Zelda and Sonic fan, it was easy for me to fall into the love for these two princesses. So, I actually took my chance a step further and watched an episode of the show that was about the princesses and "A Royal Problem" was the first episode I watched. At the time, I didn't know who Twilight or Starlight was and just watched the two princesses scenes instead. Both Celestia and Luna were hilarious in the episode and it got a good laugh out of me at one point. 3 years of being a MLP fan later, I questioned myself again: Why do I love these two beautiful alicorn princesses so much? And the only answer I can give is because they both taught me a valuable lesson of how to forgive and forget things that happen in the past. After going back and hearing of the whole Nightmare Moon thing that happened to Luna, something born out of a misplaced jealousy and the poisonous ways Luna tried to make her own sister suffer, it actually made me sad to hear that she was banished to the MOON for a thousand years for her actions. But of course, this was because Celestia had no other choice, or else Luna's rage at her sister would have turned to the newborn kingdom they both had the responsibility of holding together. Celestia was indeed broken from this battle, wondering to herself if she would ever see her dear sister again or if what she did to Luna was wrong, every time she looked toward the Moon where Luna then resided. A thousand years later, Twilight and her friends save Luna from her torment and what does Celestia immediately do? Not scream or yell at her for what she's gone through for the past thousand years, but instead embraces her sister and asks for her friendship and sisterhood once more, with Luna happily agreeing to and begging for Celestia's forgiveness, unaware that she already had forgiven her. They're sisters, and that all that matters. Never mind all that happened in the past, let it stay there, because the only thing that matters is what you choose to be in the future. As long as you or someone you know is willing to let go of the past, you can make it through anything, no matter how hard or tough the situation is! I can think of no better teachers than the two Royal Sisters. Both are so beautiful and incredible and even after a thousand years apart from one another, they're both still sisters until the end!
  14. Title says it all, really. If they're ascended alicorns who are long lived, wouldn't that mean Twilight, as an ascended alicorn, really would outlive her friends, contrary to what Meghan McCarthy stated?
  15. The letter that Celestia got said that at the end of the first day all unicorn magic will be gone. During the first day Luna even stated that raising the sun and moon have become troublesome. But after the first day when all unicorn magic should be gone the day and night continue to cycle without Celestia and Luna? Unless the Tree of Harmony took over for them sense Cozy Glow's "spell"? didn't seem to have an effect on the tree and knowing the tree being sentient from episode 22? Maybe kinda like it didn't seem to effect the "monsters" bodies in Tartarus or something, I don't know?
  16. I know that there are a lot of topics that asks which one is better than the other, but I think both of them are equally the best. Both are kind and very beautiful, both of there duties are important for the ponies of Equestria and there seriously needs to be an episode centered solely around these two royal sisters. Both Celestia and Luna are the best
  17. EDIT: Have a Luna as well! Hey guys!! Wanted to share this with you all. It's a new little thing I thought of doing last night, where I draw characters and use stock photography to color them. Here's my first attempt, Best Pony, Celestia...
  18. I mean think of it, we have yet to get an answer as to where this darkeness came from. Well here I give my theory on how it came to be and who may be responible for it. Comments are Welcomed #MLPFIM #MYLITTLEPONYFRIENDSHIPISMAGIC #GROGAR #HASBRO #DHXMEDIA #MLPTHEORY #THEORY #THEORIES
  19. Ok, so I know this isn't a story but i need help. I am currently working on my OC's backstory and i'm kinda stuck. So, i need another pony to write about and what i could add to help me get in the writing mind set. I have a set of ponies and a brief summary: Capricorn: Male, Unicorn: He was Starswirl's partner and was the first Changeling king. He was erased from history when he was bitten by a Changeling maggot in case the ponies would begin to fear Starswirl as well, Starswirl was ordered by King Anubis to destroy any trace of Capricorn's connection to the Royals or Starswirl. King Darus: Male, Alicorn: He was the Alicorn of Justice and the brother of Cosmos (Celestia and Lunas' father). He married Princess Nyah (The Alicorn of Nature and the cousin of Galaxia) and had a son named Otis. He was the king of Sendaria and was loved by his people yet he faced a constant struggle against the threat of war from the close West, past Orberia, by a land of dragons named Gnar (na-rr). Queen Allegra: Female, Pegasus: She was the mother of Cadence and wife of Eros (prince of Cloudsdale). She felt like an outsider as she was a Pegasus living in a world of Alicorns. King Cosmos created the Alicorn Amulets so that non-Alicorn rulers ruling beside Alicorns would be able to be on the same level. The Amulet gave Allegra magical abilities without having to possess a horn and increased strength. King Garin II and Queen Gillian: Male and Female, Griffins: They were the last monarchs of Griffonstone. They fled their kingdom after the Idol of Boreas was lost when Garin was fighting the Arimaspi. They had no children and their relatives where all murdered or they escaped. They ended up in Horseshoe Bay, then they travelled past Apple Loosa (Which used to be a kingdom named Appalia) and they finally laid to rest in Saddle Arabia. They lived there for the rest of their life. What can i do to make this more interesting and have more depth? P.S: I have the whole timeline of most species and their kingdoms and rulers from before Equestria was created, so if you want to know then i can tell you. Thanks!
  20. https://www.fimfiction.net/story/370173/the-guardian (C)2017 A common human Alex gets transferred to Equestria. Desperate to return home at first, he starts noticing himself changing. Time comes for him to decide for Equestria destiny. Will he conform? Which path will he choose? Are Celestia's fears justified? Here is the story of a human, despite being an alien in Equestria, not being an outcast, a door mat or a toy for ponies. His misery comes from inside, painfully at first he accommodates. Equestria changes him and time will come to return the debt. 1. Arrival A fierce lightning bolt ripped thick clouds and speared into the ruined castle tower so heavily that it made debris and dust fly in the damp air. When the mess settled a bit, partially taken down by the rain, which became really strong at that moment, it revealed the electric discharge being so strong that it carved a deep notch in the stone floor of what previously had been the upper room of the tower. At least when it had a roof. Now, as the rain poured inside freely, it made the strange curled figure in the middle of the lightning carved pit feel quite uncomfortable. Because seconds later a young man gasped and cringed in pain from the feeling of a bunch of burning snakes slithering through his entire body. “Oh, my…” He wheezed faintly. “What in the name of the creator just happened?” Slowly and painfully he kneeled. Perhaps it was not the best idea, as nausea struck him mercilessly, so he almost crashed back on the floor. But lying on the stone floor in the pool of rain water, which started gathering in the pit he found himself in, was neither. He realized that he started to freeze in the cold wind, blowing through glassless windows of what he recognized to be some sort of a ruin. That wasn’t nearly nice. His skin burned and reddened, as if he had gone through some fire, but thankfully it wasn’t burnt too much, yet it hardly made the feel better. His clothes now looked like a few shreds of the shirt hanging from the collar and cuffs, some remnants of the jeans wrapping around his legs and annoyingly getting in the way, the rest was completely ruined, burned as well. The charred edges and familiar smell spoke for themselves. At least he had his boxers and boots intact, the former simply missed their chance to burn, being under the rest of the clothes, and the latter were well made of thick leather for man’s sheer luck. “Great,” He muttered to himself, shivering as another thunder strike rolled in the sky. “At least I don’t need to go barefoot…” “Go where?” A sudden uneasy thought came to his mind. “And where exactly I should go from?” Still feeling dizzy, he got on his feet and tried to look around. With the bright lightning flash he got an image of a medium size round room full of stone and wooden debris. It could be anything before, totally unrecognizable now as it was hardly the first thunderstorm hitting the unmaintained building. The roof fell in long ago, showing a few broken beams, which couldn’t stop the wind and rains from doing their destructive job. What could be some furniture, books, anything else now lay in decay. The time-worn chandelier, lying on the floor under the large boulder, appeared to be the most durable thing there. The only attention-worthy thing in that room was a square opening in the floor near the wall. Surely it looked like an entryway to a bottomless pit in the darkness, but it couldn’t be really that bad. For all, what he knew about castles… “Castle!” He caught himself screaming that in full voice. “What the flying hell is going on?” “I can’t remember any castles nearby,” He said to himself, calming down a bit. “Damn, not nearby, not in the whole region, hundreds of miles round neither. What has happened to me?” “Well,” He grinned painfully. “One step at a time, Alex, one step at a time…” At least he remembered his name. Seemed not that bad, right? If only it could be worse actually. So… For all, what he knew about castles, they were made of stone and with the priority of safety and stability in mind. So, hardly the owners, builders, whoever stupidly jumped in the pit, there must be stairs under that opening. Hopefully stone ones, which haven’t been destroyed by the time, unlike wooden hatch on the opening – a few planks still hung on the ancient door hinges. With another lightning Alex indeed saw dark, narrow stone stairs made slippery from the rain. He thought it was time to leave the open room – bombs never hit the same pit twice, but it was a lightning storm and… the day was “strange”. So he decided to err on the side of caution. He ripped the rags – which were once his shirt and pants – off his hands, neck and legs. ‘Off you go,’ Alex threw them in a pile on the floor. ‘No warmth from you anyway, yet another chance to stumble or catch something and fall all the way nobody-knows-how-far down.’ He stepped on the spiral staircase, sticking to the outer wall and touching it with his left hand. He didn’t smoke and had no lighter or matches… And even if he did, that wouldn’t have helped him as all he had vanished with his jacket. As he remembered the stairs were not wider than the hatch. God only knew if there were beams, landings or even anything in the middle. He caught himself on the feeling that the wind became chilling in the tube of the tower… or was that staircase itself to blame. Alex was afraid of heights. “I’m not taking any chances,” smirked Alex to himself sticking closer to the wall. * The car ate mile by mile of the empty Sunday road. Oncoming traffic was minimal and Alex could focus on his plans and expectations while driving. Surely not every 25-years-old man could think of a better career – benefits of the well planned and qualitative education, personal determination and, let’s be honest pure luck, but what job doesn’t require at least some luck – an IT specialist in a profit-making company capable of having personal transport, simple but comfortable apartment and no Damocles sword of debts hanging over the head. Well, he really deserved it. Starting from the “ground level”, working with hardware, through endless night shifts, he finally noticed that it naturally started paying back. He could manage everything he came across his daily routines, but sometimes the feeling of completion was slightly tinted with regret. He could have spent more time with parents, with his almost-a-girlfriend. They were neither officially engaged nor limited themselves by any obligations… yet, but Elen was just-the-right-person for Alex. They understood each other wordlessly, they always found time to help each other, they could trust themselves being a stronghold one for another and above all, they both could easily make each other laugh happily or feel safe and serene, when it was necessary. No wonder Alex wanted to give Elen more attention. But living forced him to prioritize. And it was rare chance to get to the next level of personal freedom and gain. He was offered a job in another company. Same IT field, almost the same duties, but in fact it was a direct promotion from the level he currently had. They have practically been ready to give him a whole subdivision to lead, obviously, that meant bigger income and further career opportunities. In common terms, it meant a private house after a short while and an ability to move in with his special somebody, whom he already asked about and got cheerful consent. Truth to be told, Elen would have been happy to join him in the old place without any special conditions long ago, but he didn’t ask and she didn’t find it acceptable to suggest herself. Of course, it also meant moving to another city, but wasn’t it better done, while his parents were not too old and he could freely build his life? Besides, it was a neighboring city, not another country or another planet, it was only a few hours ride. Considering all that Alex took a couple of days off to visit the new place and make the final decision. The new company was ready to give him from a couple of weeks to a month to make all arrangements at his old job and quit with as much dignity as it was possible. So he planned his days off to be Monday and Tuesday, thus having all weekend plus two days for a safe trip and acquaintance. A few raindrops fell, leaving curvy tracks on the windshield. Alex frowned and raised the side window – the wind became stronger and blew some dust inside. He heard the muffled sound of distant thunder, then a bright flash sparkled in the sky. Soon the whole road ahead was barely visible through the heavy rain. Alex slowed down his car and turned on the lights. Thunderstorms were never a rarity in May, but as long as Alex remembered, there wasn’t any in that day prognosis. They promised warm, even hot, for that time of the year, sunny day without any precipitation. The whole cataclysm started all of the sudden. A few seconds ago it was warm and clear and in a moment the storm began… and the car didn’t even cover a mile during that change. Flashes of lightning followed now one by one in a matter of a few seconds and Alex slowed down even more, when one of them lit a road sign at the shoulder – sharp turn. It was even darker here; the whole road was covered by the shadow of an enormous tree on the nearby hill. Alex could swear, he had never seen any of that size in his life. It was shimmering with millions of silvery green leaves on swaying in the wind branches. Alex thought it was very strange that no lightning yet struck that giant tree, despite it was standing as the only lightning-conductor in a few miles radius. He also thought, if that tree was guilty of quite a few road accidents every month, as the whole view was simply marvelous and there hardly was a driver, who didn’t lavish it with an extra amazed look. Next thing he saw were headlights of the oncoming car, which apparently moved considerably faster than reasonable on such a turn, with that kind of weather. The driver managed to swerve past him. Alex took a glance in the mirror and saw the car started sliding uncontrollably on the road, then it hit a smaller tree behind the road shoulder and stopped. Alex pressed the brakes all the way down, risking repeating that driver’s “trick”. He stopped at the wayside and turned off the engine. “Merlin’s pants, I hope the poor bastards are alright,” he thought, when he rushed to the crash site. “What did they think about, when they were driving that fast… or were they just looking at that damned tree mammoth only?” There was a woman behind the wheel in that car, she managed to get out herself. More shocked than hurt. She was still shaking off that dizziness, when Alex took off his jacket and pushed in her hands. “The inner pocket,” he looked in her eyes to ensure that she understood him. “Take the phone and call the emergency.” He already saw that there was one more person in the car, who definitely needed more help. A girl on the back seat, clutching something yellow and pink and evidently terrified and shocked. Alex tried to open her door, then the door on the other side to find both were jammed, while the girl’s mother was making a call. Gasoline trailed up his nose and Alex realized, it was the matter of moments. He climbed into the car through the driver’s door and took out the keys. Still, he could swear, he heard the dreading sound of the sparkles somewhere under the hood. He then turned to the girl and forced himself to smile in the most soothing way possible in that situation. “Hey, hold on, we’re going to get you and your… pony friend out,” he noticed the toy in her hands. “Just a moment longer.” He then climbed over the front seat and unlocked the belt. The poor little one clutched to him hardly less than to her pony. She didn’t cry, only whimpered like a deadly scared kitten. Alex found that it was nearly impossible to get the shocked child out of the car the same way he got into. She was near the panic attack already. “It’s raining, your pony needs some cover,” whispered he in her ear, while pulling girl’s head to his chest and covering her from any damage. He then twisted and hit the rear window with all the strength he could afford. After the second blow the glass gave up and out. Alex grabbed the girl and pushed her out of the car through the opening. “Here, take her and get away from the car,” he breathed out. “Thank you, thank you…” Tears mixed with the rain on the mother’s face, when she got her treasure. She then backed off the car with the daughter in her hands; suddenly Alex saw, how her eyes widely opened in terror. “Please, hurry, get out now!” She shrieked on the top of her lungs. Next thing he heard was a zapping sound and the car got lit from the bottom by inflamed gasoline. And then the world around him dissolved in an unendurable white flash and the sound of thunder. * So the last thing he remembered, when the world around was normal, if being fried and electrocuted in a crashed car could be considered nearly normal (well at least it was real), was bright blinding light. That was the first thing he experienced here. But wasn’t the rest around him real too? Alex stopped. Wondering how silly that idea looked he took a small portion of the skin on his arm and pinched it as hard as possible for the resulting feeling to be enough to tell if he was dreaming. “DAAAAAAMN IT!” The roar rolled down the tower, causing the rumbling echo in the corridors below. ‘Merlin’s pants, that was convincing!’ Alex cringed. He was into RPG and fantasy, so it sometimes came afloat with the strong feelings. Unsure if Merlin had indeed something to do about all that Alex noted that the feeling of burning snakes inside him didn’t go away, it simply faded, muffled by more actual problems. Besides, he realized he was freezing cold already and started to shake. Like if that wasn’t enough, his legs started feeling numb, as the whole way down the stairs wasn’t that easy, despite being only a few minutes long. He saw absolutely nothing and was to proceed really slow, trying to feel the wall with his fingers and stairs with his feet. The tower had no windows and, while it could be lit by some torches (somehow Alex felt that there were exactly the torches or candles, never the electric light), when it was in its full glory, now it was pitch black all over. ‘I must be thankful for being claustrophobic not,’ grinned Alex. ‘Otherwise, I would probably be stuck in the upper room forever.’ ‘So, what do I have now?’ he tried to summarize his score. ‘I was on the ride to a work appointment, when it started raining cats’n’dogs all of a sudden. I couldn’t see the road well enough, so I slowed down.’ ‘And there was that sharp turn. And that tree nearby!’ The memory came so vividly, almost highlighted by a thunderbolt. ‘Yeah, there was the thunderbolt, the flash which made the whole surroundings visible, despite the clouds and rain.’ ‘That tree was enormous, I wondered if it was more than a thousand years old. There were quite a few such trees in the whole country, and that was probably the biggest one,’ Alex also thought that he had wondered exactly, if many drivers got into accidents, being distracted by the mere look of that silver-green giant. ‘Then another car appeared. It was moving too fast for those road conditions, no wonder they noticed me too late.’ As he remembered, that car lost control, as its driver tried to avoid the collision on the wet road. It slid by and crashed into one of the smaller trees at the road shoulder. The woman, who drove it, got out by herself, but the rear doors jammed after the impact. And there was a girl, about eight years old, on the back seat of that car. Alex remembered that he had stopped at the shoulder, and rushed to the damaged car, risking to fall on the slippery ground. He had taken off his jacket and threw it to the woman, who seemed to be a complete wreck. There was a cell phone in the inner pocket. Alex told her to call the emergency and climbed inside her car. Taking the keys out didn’t ease the situation – he could feel the smell of gas quickly forming a pool under the car… and there were those damned sparkling sounds somewhere. Alex tried to calm himself. Panic was nowhere near useful for solving problems. And he was afraid that he could scare the girl even more. She sat there, curling almost in a small ball; she wasn’t crying or panicking, just quietly whimpering. There was hope in her wide opened eyes… He tried to open the rear doors only to find they both were jammed, then he told her to duck, and hit the rear window with his foot. It got covered in the web of cracks, but stayed, damn those tinting films. He hit once more and thankfully the whole glass flew out. Alex shouted to the woman and clicked the kid’s seat belt open. He took the girl and carefully pushed her from the rear window into her mother’s hands. The little one gripped tightly to her plush toy – a pony it was… He remembered it so clearly, perhaps for the rest of his life – the yellow pony with soft long pinkish mane and tail. The woman shouted something, while she was backing from the car with her daughter. ‘Well, at least they are on a safe distance,’ he thought. ‘Time to get out of here before all hell breaks loose…’ ‘And then the nightmare started!’ Alex closed his eyes, cringing at the memories. With another sparkling sound the whole pool of gas under the car turned into the bright oven of doom. But before Alex could think, it was the end and a really ugly one – he started feeling heat almost immediately – he heard the ear-splitting sound of thunder and a bright blinding flash filled his consciousness. Alex shivered. Was he brought here by lightning? By fire? For common sense’s sake, that was breaking the whole world order, he knew and loved. That was simply impossible. Yet it happened. The whole world around him was real. The feeling when he pinched himself was real. And the damnation, he screamed in pain, caused one damn real echo. His foot stepped on a very real small mean stone… And Alex lost his real balance rolling down the real stairs. “FUUUUUCK the castles!” He wasn’t sure, if he shouted all that in his mind or the whole castle was blessed loudly. Most likely mentally, as he was lucky to roll only a few steps. “FUUUUCK the stairs, cars and storms!!!” “… And fuck the ponies!” assumed Alex, when his head heartily “greeted” the floor. With that reassuring thought he fainted. * Darkness fell upon Canterlot, muffling all the activity on the streets. Cicadas, occasional dog barking or hurried hoofsteps of rare citizens on their late way home were the only sounds breaking the serenity of the night. Everypony slept in their comfortable beds, resting from daily routines and even leaves on the trees didn’t dare to break the silence in the complete calm. Nopony noticed the distant and violent storm, which poured tons of water and ripped the dark sky with thunderbolts above the old ruins in the middle of Everfree forest. Even the hardest blast, which could easily compete with the light of full moon rising, was most likely unnoticed by anypony. Anypony but one. “Ahem…” Luna turned one ear to the approaching delicate steps of her regal sister, but apparently her attention was otherwise completely occupied by something else, as she stayed, where she was, observing distance through a telescope. “Luna,” princess Celestia, the Ruler of the Day and Sun, called a bit louder, while she entered the observation balcony on the top of the highest tower of Canterlot castle. She waved her wings in unconscious contraction with a sudden windflaw. “Dear, are you here or several dozens of miles away?” She then approached her younger sister, princess Luna, the Ruler of the Night and Moon, Master of the Dreams. Something was apparently bothering her that much that she decided to abandon her usual patience and extended her foreleg to touch sister’s shoulder. “Oh, Tia! Mine apologies,” Luna turned her head from the telescope. “Well, of course, I’ve heard thee. I’ve been examining our… strange issue in the Everfree and slightly captured by mine thoughts about. So what didst thou want?” “So, you’ve already noticed,” Celestia nodded. “That overly strange and, I’m not afraid to call it that, impossible thunderstorm above the woods.” “Above the old castle ruins to be exact,” Luna rectified with her eyes, returning to the swirl of clouds in the distance, which meanwhile started to fade. “And what do you think about all that?..” “It started moments after I raised the Moon, escalated really fast and now, after half an hour, is fading as suddenly as it started,” Luna touched her chin with the hoof, summarizing. “With clouds so thick and swirling in a compact circle, thunderbolts of that strength and the whole amount of water, which managed to come down in a short time, one might bethink, it needed quite an army of pegasi to stage such a performance.” “Exactly,” replied Celestia with a tiny smile. “But…” “But thither were no pegasi assigned to that wide-scale duty the present day at all,” continued Luna. “I have checked the prognosis twice and thither was nothing alike planned for tonight. Besides, what was the point of pouring tons of water in the middle of nowhere practically?” Her strengthened Old language revealed Luna being a bit excited by the events, as normally she tried her best to accommodate to the modern style of talking. Being properly understood by your subjects was sometimes vital and the Royal Canterlot Voice wasn’t an ultimate tool to reach that goal. There was no point of being loud, while others were trying hard to grasp the mere sense. “The storm started completely by itself,” Celestia emphasized with concern. “And that’s not something we have been getting here for hundreds of years. Not here, in the middle of Equestria. I admit that Everfree lives by its own laws quite often, but still…” “Thou art concerned about some imminent danger,” Luna nodded in understanding. “Or rather somepony. As we hardly got something unruly without somepony’s assistance the last few times.” “Even if they were not ponies,” she smiled mirthlessly. “But I have sensed nothing. Nothing and nopony, possessing any magic at the least, be it malevolent or contrary to that,” Luna’s ears sadly flattened. “I don’t understand, Tia, what are we dealing with?” “Neither do I,” confessed her older sister. “As you said, “sensed nothing and nopony”.” “But we shan’t let it out of our attention. I wonder, if I should send some guards there right now, Luna,” Celestia threw a quick look over the distant ruins, but there was silence and peace over them at that moment, as the storm ended. “I sincerely suppose that we should just wait for a while,” Luna returned to watching the sleeping domain below. “Guards will hardly find any…pony in the middle of the night, despite mine Moon. If thither is anything to look for, I’m unsure.” “I trust your judgment of that, dear,” with a heartily smile Celestia nuzzled sister’s shoulder. “Well, I’m not insisting… but I doubt, we are capable to take any effective steps right now.” Luna leaned back to Celestia. “Have some sleep now, Tia. It’s going to be a long day ahead. And I shall return to mine nightly duty.” “Have it lightly. Good night, sister.” Luna waved her hoof in the air, showing that she returned the wish, while her attention returned again to the old ruins deep amidst Everfree. * “AAARGHH!!!” Absolute darkness of unconsciousness was changed by the slightly less thick darkness of the old castle. ‘It becomes routinely to fall and get hit. Up to no good you are, man.’ Alex sat on the floor and waited, till the walls stopped spinning around him. As he gained normal sight, he noticed that it became less dark around. There was a hallway up ahead and the moonlight patches on the floor noted the existence of windows for once. He got up to be greeted by his grumbling stomach. What a nice change: just when he realized the flaming snakes feeling was still with him, he was almost naked, cold and bruised, his stomach decided to remind that it existed and needed attention. The mere fact that the last decent, moreover any, meal Alex had, was past noon didn’t encourage as well. Trying not to think that he should rather be concerned of not being eaten in that godforsaken place, than having something to eat (the castle seemed to be abandoned for a few hundred years and could be anywhere deep in the wild), Alex proceeded to the hallway. The storm was over during his “blackout” and the full moon looked through the numerous bowed windows of the long corridor with dark regular winged statues standing in the arcs. The night seemed to be young still and Alex noticed that he shivered less here than in the tower. Strangely the storm ended without any sign of it taking place, except water, the air outside was still warm and brought the faint scent of unknown flowers. Alex looked out of the nearest window. ‘Bad, bad idea!’ He managed to notice the green sea of trees, apparently surrounding the castle and shimmering silver in the moonlight and breeze… just before the whole picture doubled or even tripled in his eyesight and his guts tried to make a backflip. ‘I’m too high above the ground,’ he said to himself, accurately backing up from the dreading opening. He then added. ‘Great, I’m in the middle of nowhere and still need to find a suitable way out of that castle.’ He was a bit ashamed to confess, he wouldn’t use the faster exit, even if it was twice lower or there was water below. Back home he was never able to enter a balcony higher than the first floor, here it seemed that he was on the fourth or something alike. And the ceilings were high given that it was the castle. The sudden memory about home was painful. Alex had no faintest idea, how he was supposed to get home without practically anything: the documents, money, his car. The thought that it would be great at the very least to define, where he was and where his home was, didn’t provide much optimism either. Without the phone, map or any clues about the area it wasn’t going to be a game. Alex released a deep sigh. It seemed, he was to stay inside till morning – he couldn’t notice anything outside, which can be used as a landmark, except the very castle, but it wasn’t enough to proceed. He was still uncomfortable about walking around in the wild in underwear only and hoped that perhaps he could find something for the covers. Finally, it was simply stupid to walk through some unknown forest in the middle of the night. ‘So let’s check the other rooms,’ he said to himself, while stepping further into the hallway. ‘If only that annoying pain inside faded, I’d be completely happy.’ The closer look at one of the statues quickly brought the now-almost-native feeling of unease back. There was something familiar in the statue, something that Alex still couldn’t remember, yet making his skin crawl. No, they were not some gargoyles or any sort of other ugly stone abominations so usual for the ancient castles. What stood in front of him was a sculpture of a… unicorn. There was something strange about it: it wasn’t of the size of a normal horse, but smaller, almost like a big pony. However, it was more slender, than a pony any of us could portray, more graceful. In addition to that, the statue was “wearing” the armour. Quick examination made clear that the armour was more like of a soldier, than a battle animal, besides, there were no saddle, no harness, in other words, nothing normally used to ride a… pony. Alex also noticed that not all the statues were the same, as it seemed to him from the first look. Half of them were unicorns, another half had wings, thus being technically pegasi. He giggled nervously. ‘Yet this feeling that I have seen those somewhere…’ “Well, dude,” Alex slapped the closest statue lightly on the muzzle with a cackle. “It seems, there going to be more ponies in my life from now on.” According to his “internal clock” Alex was wandering around the castle for about an hour already. He tried to keep the general direction of getting down to the ground floor, thus walking down every staircase, he could find not ruined. Yet he felt that he was covering much more distance horizontally than actually descending, not mentioning that he was to backtrack twice because of corridors blocked by collapsed walls. Alex completely forgot about his hunger. Now he was concerned about warming himself and getting some safe place to sleep without any risk to freeze completely till morning. He wasn’t sure if it was going to get any colder before the sunrise, considering he had no idea, where exactly the castle was situated. What he saw through the windows clearly showed that it wasn’t some polar region. For which Alex was immensely thankful. But every compartment without windows was noticeably colder; the stone walls didn’t keep warmth like probably they did, when the castle was full of life. He didn’t know if it was bad or good that he apparently was all alone there. Remembering now the yell he gave, when rolling down that stairwell in the tower, he came to the conclusion, that wasn’t the best thing to do. But the sound startled nobody and nobody came to check of the trespasser. So he guessed that tiptoeing wasn’t absolutely necessary, opening the few remaining doors, despite them screeching mercilessly, was safe as well. Next doors Alex faced were large, heavy, built of thick noble wood. Amazing ancient carving, highlighted by the moon light, coming through the high window behind his back, covered the door leafs. When he pushed them lightly, he was amazed by how easily and quietly they opened. It seemed that particular room was of great importance to the castle inhabitants, so they treated all the stuff inside with great care. The furniture stood intact in the dark room, most likely being of the finest quality, so it survived whatever disaster happened. “Gasp!” Alex stumbled in the doorway, as he noticed something deep in the room. A human figure in another passage at the far wall. At first he was worried a bit, but only for a second or two… “Hello!” Alex rushed inside the room. “I’m lost and…” He found himself staring at… Alex, same tired and bruised Alex in his dusty boxers and boots; Alex with quite a stupid look on the face, which already managed to grow some stubble. He extended his hand to touch a giant dimmed mirror about 10 feet tall. Alex gave out a deep sigh of relief and… despair. “Nasty mirror,” he muttered. “I almost thought that I found some help.” He took another look across the room, which, as he noticed, was a bedroom of some regal person most likely. Closer examination of the king-size bed revealed it being of no use, as there was nor sheets neither mattress left (they were probably that pile of dust beneath the bed). The wooden frame survived, but not the delicate cloth. Alex thought, he was going to have no sleep tonight, as other furniture in the room, at least the chairs and banquettes, were somehow not comfortable for him to relax properly. He remembered that every unbroken seat, he found previously, was as well… perhaps too low for his comfort. Other furniture like tables, cabinets seemed to be alright though. Alex proceeded through more and more rooms: spacious halls and small cabinets. Checked more bedrooms and bathrooms with the stone basins built into the floor – all with mostly time worn and broken furniture. He passed an enormous library, thinking that he probably was to wander around that castle till morning looking for the exit. He checked a couple of books (more automatically than hoping to find something helpful) one of which crumbled to dust in his hands. Nothing that could help, some historical stuff that could be interesting, if he wasn’t almost falling asleep on the spot. Well, if he wasn’t, he might have noticed that, despite understanding, what the books were telling, there was no single word written in plain English in them. But his tired mind noticed the content and completely missed, paid no attention to form – the symbols the books were written in. Finally, after one more staircase, he found himself on seemingly the first floor of the castle, in the long high hall of some regal value. High windows on both opposite narrow ends of the hall let enough light inside for him to see columns, chandeliers at the walls and ends of ceiling arcs, more sets of horse… pony armour, standing on their eternal duty along the walls, another single staircase at his end of the hall, going down and most likely to the castle front doors at some point. With the idea that going outside was definitely some daytime business, Alex headed to the opposite end of the hall, where he noticed a stepped podium with two… thrones. After approaching that three steps elevation with two large thrones Alex noticed, they were still in nice condition, not only stone frame, but also the soft seats and backrests. Another sign of those being made for the top-class noble asses, as Alex giggled inwardly. One throne was covered with a large ancient tapestry, also quite well retained. It must have fallen from the wall behind the thrones, as a similar tapestry hung behind the second throne. Alex rose the steps and took the tapestry by its edge to unfold it. The cloth was of amazing quality and lightness, unbelievable for its age, nowhere heavy and rough on touch, unlike almost every common tapestry. This one was made in black, all sorts of blue and silver colours with white outlining. Presumably night sky with stars and bright moon above and a dark blue slender winged horse figurine below facing… flying down. Another tapestry on the wall was generally in blue, white and gold, depicting the sky, sun disc high above and a white slender winged horse figurine flying up. Alex closed his eyes. The same feeling of unease flooded him again. Both images were painfully familiar, he knew he had seen them somewhere already. But they were parts of a single image in his memory. * That was one of those family days, when Alex and his parents were visiting relatives from another city. The latter lived in suburbs, without plenty means of entertaining people, especially younger ones. This and them having two daughters, 12 and 8 years old, practically meant that, while older members of the family were discussing all, what was usually discussed on family meetings, girls were totally Alex’s business. Besides cousins were under the impression of the 19 years old sibling, that sort of impression, which usually leads to looking up to with eyes wide opened, giggles, unintentional innocent flirting and tons of teasing. All harmless, at least until it starts coming at you as a storm… That day wasn’t going to be an easy one, as Alex told himself earlier in the morning. The relatives lived in a cottage with a large garden. So hide and seek, play catch, some more random running around, while both girls contrived to almost run him over a few times, made Alex finally unsure if he had two cousins only or maybe four… or even six already. “Hey, girls,” called he, getting up from the grass. “What about getting inside and having a bit quieter entertainment… before it becomes traumatic?” “Boo, spoilsport!” Older cousin bumped into him and grabbed in a bear hug. “Right when we started having fun.” “Two of you are too much for the “old Alex”,” he stuck out his tongue, teasing her. “You’re not old,” she wrinkled her nose, making her freckles jump. “Just a bit grumpy and into your computer stuff too much. Tell me the point of going to the gym, when you can just have fun outside for free with the same result.” “Yes, yes,” Eagerly jumped the younger, while Alex thought about a dignified answer to the previous question. “We can view some cartoons. Just got a new show on DVD.” She took Alex’s and her sister’s hands and rushed into the house, sweeping away all possible objections. “OK, what will it be?” asked Alex, when they sat in the living room. ‘Girly stuff,’ he shrugged mentally, while younger cousin turned the TV on and set the disc into the player already. It was the new show called My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic. As he suspected typical girly stuff. Yet despite pinkish gamma and girly hyper voices, what he watched was fun. It was the first episode, where a few pony girls were searching for some relics to prevent an evil alter ego of one of the two rulers of the land from returning from her 1000 years banishment. The land was called Equestria. ‘So original’, smirked Alex to himself. It was ruled once by two sisters: one reigned over the day and Sun, another – over the Night and Moon. The younger sister – Luna got jealous of Celestia, the older sister, thinking she was getting more attention and love, naturally being the princess of the day. Luna went completely mental, being spoiled by the shadow and turned into Nightmare Moon, who tried to take over the whole land and establish the eternal night by refusing to get the Moon down and let Celestia rise the Sun. It was impossible how Alex could still remember all those names and facts from the show. Celestia then entrapped her younger sister into the Moon, using those relics and started ruling the country on her own, day and night, Sun and Moon, while mourning of her once beloved sister. But after 1000 years certain conditions were met for Nightmare Moon to return and attempt revenge… With the help of the relics, the pony girls (main characters of the show) managed to cast out Nightmare Moon and return princess Luna as former kind and sane self. But those were details… There was the old castle of Two Sisters in that show. And there. Was. That. Sign! Of two regal sisters, rulers of the Moon and Sun. * Alex dropped the tapestry and covered his face with hands. It wasn’t obvious if he was going to shriek, cry or curl on the stone platform in disbelief and despair. ‘That simply can’t be true!’ cried his mind. ‘Come on, it was just a blasted movie, a cartoon for kids!’ Well, last time he tried to check, if he was sleeping or delusional, was painful and real. From all forms of insanity, this could be the least possible, Alex could imagine for himself, if thinking about insanity was his common practice. After a few minutes he managed to bring together, what remained of his trembling, tired and frustrated self. ‘I am regally screwed!’ he gritted his teeth heavily. ‘But, damn it, I’ll deal with this tomorrow!’ ‘I’m too tired for logical conclusions. No ponies or nightmares or else will take away my sleep. And I’ve finally found some “clothes”,’ Alex let out a sad grin. He grabbed Luna’s tapestry… ‘Oh, dear Lord, please, let me be mistaken!’ … and made some kind of toga, wrapping it around his tired body and finding it surprisingly nice and warm. He then climbed with his legs on that throne in front of him and curled, trying to find the possibly comfortable pose. Minutes later overloaded by today’s events Alex passed out. --- Author's note: If 't be true you like the story (and have FimFiction account, otherwise, you can't vote), please, take a minute to support the book hither: https://www.fimfiction.net/story/370173/the-guardian "Thumbs up" are very welcome, comments either. Mine most sincere gratitude in advance!
  21. Will princess Luna one day rule Equestria? Your thoughts and opinions are highly supported!
  22. New month, new track! This is an orchestral piece I made on the emotional turmoil following luna's banishment: pony.fm track: https://pony.fm/tracks/37402-the-banishment-of-luna
  23. What the hell did Celestia do a thousand years ago? it seems like Celestia was just pissing off every major Villain a thousand years ago. Nightmare moon sent to the moon, Discord imprisoned, Sombra and the Crystal Empire, etc.
  24. So Celestia can just decide when to move the sun when she feels like it? And in the middle of the night? Doesn't creatures on the world of Equestria kind of DEPEND on the sun being accurate and on time?
  25. The story of Laina Charm and the suffering of her mother. This is basically my OC's story and my OC is an Alicorn. So if that angers you in any way, feel free to leave. Queen Allura ruled the Kingdom of Orberia to the West of Equestria. Her mother was Queen Serena, the sister of Queen Galaxia. Therefore, Queen Allura was Celestia and Luna's cousin. One day, Allura was walking through her kingdom and witnessing the delight of her citizens due to the Festival of Starlight. A festival that celebrated the coming of the North Stars, flying to the South. Their light creates a purple and blue aura in the sky at night. One day, the Queen of Cloudsdale, Aurora, arrived in Orberia to talk with Allura and brought her Royal Guard with her. The General of the Royal Guard was named Gale Drasten and was always by Aurora's side. The threat of the changelings increased everyday and would soon become one of the the biggest problems Equestria has faced. "Allura, the darkness in the East is spreading. The Changeling kingdom is increasing in number and size everyday. King Zeros is ready to strike at any moment. A war will soon rise and the Alicorn rulers refuse to let any of their citizens lose their lives for it. We have also decided that your generation will not fight." Allura was shocked, "What? Why?" "I pray that we don't but If we all die then at least there will be others to rule afterwards. We know they will lose. What we don't know is if we will remain alive to celebrate their defeat." Allura looked to the floor in dismay as a single tear fell from her cheek. "There will be no cause to celebrate for such a tragic and immense loss." Aurora looked at Allura with a sad smile. "Do not worry, my child. Equestria will be fine and the threat of the changelings will be averted. You and the others will rule with benevolence and dignity." Allura looked up at Aurora and smiled. The breeze of the cool air brushed against her cheek and they began to continue walking across the courtyard. The Sun began to set beyond the horizon and its beautiful light shone for it's last hours. "Allura?" "Yes?" "This may be intrusive but...when was the last time you were courted?" "WHAT?!" "What? You need to. We are all weary and the world is at a dark place right now. Love is just what it needs and... I saw you looking at my General. This may be your chance. A child may be exactly what you need and what your kingdom needs." "I can't. That was Lorelai's line of expertise. Courting has always come easiest to her." "Don't be silly. It's easy. Just try. Trust me when I say that if it's meant to be then it shall be. I meant Ferrara during a thunderstorm and i was talking an evening stroll. He was conjuring them in anger and i calmed him. Destiny. That was how we fell in love. Fate is a powerful thing." "Fine, I will try." A few days went by and Allura constantly saw Gale Drasten. Her heart would race and her pupils would dilate every time. Finally, she bumped into Gale Drasten. His eyes were shimmering pools of clear water. She only wished to swim in them forever. She smiled and let her eyes fall to the ground. "I'm so sorry, your Majesty!" "There is no need to apologize, General." They looked deep into each other's eyes and smiled a smile which seemed like forever yet went in the blink of an eye. Perhaps it was fate. Afterwards, they met in secret many times. Sometimes in the Royal Gardens and others...in Allura's chambers. Their love began to come to light and the citizens smiled at the match. But not all were happy with their love. One pony, a Unicorn named Sultry, wanted the Queen's hand in marriage. He knew he had to get Gale out of the way. But unbeknownst to the kingdom, the Queen was secretly expecting a child. Only Gale, Aurora, Lorelai and Allura knew of the pregnancy. Allura was not leaving the castle as often and Lady Lorelai came all the way from Saddle Arabia just to step in for her sister. As soon as the Queen had her little filly, she could not enjoy the fleeting moment. Lorelai had to take the baby to Saddle Arabia to hide it from the Royal Advisors and Sultry. Queen Allura knew that her time with Gale had already upset the Royal Advisors enough. They met on the night of their daughter's birth one last time. When he left, he was kidnapped by a group of thugs. They brought him to Sultry. It was then that Gale drew his last breath. The next day, the news of a "cult" killing Gale was public. The news of a General soon became wide spread across Equestria. Allura was distraught and Aurora was outraged. She visited Allura and comforted her and spoke with her Advisers to warn them not to anger her or their Queen. Allura's Royal Advisers urged her to marry Sultry. A rich, nobleman with great power. He was perfect. Their forced marriage occurred the next day. The Kingdom knew that Allura did not want this union to happen. In an act of defiance, the citizens wore black for the whole day and performed great mourning sessions which would only occur when a member of the Royal Family dies. Though Allura was blessed that her people would do that for her, there was nothing she could do. Her marriage to Sultry would ease the ponies of Equestria. She sensed a change of an Era where ponies did not truly want Alicorns as much as they used to anymore. Just a few days later, the War between the Changeling army and the Alicorn rulers broke out. No Alicorn survived, even losing the greatest Wizard known to Pony kind. When the war ended, the eldest child of every Alicorn ruler that fought, ascended the throne. The whole of Equestria was silent. Celestia was now Queen, yet chose to remain a princess in fear of being treated more or different to any other pony. She also was devastated and chose the title to remain in a state of constant mourning for the deaths of the "true" rulers. Eros (Cadence's father) took the Crystal Empire's throne. Princess Lapis took the throne of Cloudsdale. At this very moment, every Alicorn lived in fear of what creature would lurk out of the shadows and claim Equestria for themselves. Without their parents, they believed themselves to be weak and unfit to rule. Moreover, many of the rulers were afraid of uprisings against the Alicorns. This fear was also fueled at the fact that Saddle Arabia and Appalia were both ruled by non-Alicorns and were thriving thus giving many ponies the impression that Alicorns weren't needed anymore. Alicorns were too powerful and the ponies were afraid that they could turn evil and destroy them. Only one was truly needed to protect them. Decades had pasted and the Original wielders of the Elements of Harmony were destroyed. Chrysalis was corrupted. Eros is dead. Discord was frozen in stone. Sombra was destroyed. Luna was banished to the Moon. Celestia was the only remaining wielder. Cloudsdale and Appalia (now named Apple Loosa) no longer have a ruler and the Crystal Empire has faded into legend. All the Alicorn rulers fled Equestria and went into the North when the uprisings began in Cloudsdale and Sendaria. All but Celestia and Allura. With no other ruler in Equestria to take charge of the other kingdoms, Celestia took the rule over Equestria in it's entirety. Cadence was forced to live in Canterlot with no title to show when her mother was killed in the uprisings in Cloudsdale. Queen Allura remained in Orberia. The desolate kingdom was no more. The subjects went to live in Canterlot, Cloudsdale or Ponyville ever since Stormcrow was born. Her vain son was a disgrace. His egotistical ways were undignified. He showed no respect for his mother, only seeing her as a common whore (something he pleasures himself with). Allura lived in the torment of a marriage without love. Lady Lorelai lived in Saddle Arabia with her niece, Laina Charm. Everyday was a day without friendship for Laina. Living in secrecy was a cruel punishment. She would dream of the day she would return to her mother and rid her of Sultry and Stormcrow. Her anger towards her half-brother stemmed from his arrogant and racist attitude. He believed himself to be superior to all non-Alicorns, be it Pegasi, Unicorn, Dragon or Griffin. Life in Saddle Arabia is repetitive and tedious. Wake up, fetch the water, go to the market for food, clean the house, prepare dinner, go to sleep. One long list. Laina loved her Aunt and praises her for her kindness. She knows that she is risking her whole authority and reputation. Laina lives in a small cottage just off the border of the city. It's beauty was breathtaking. Everyday, before dinner, Lorelai would arrive from the Palace of the Sultana Yasmin. She would teach Laina the most advanced ways of magic. Lorelai's expertise in Necromancy was unmatched. Her teachings lasted an hour. Laina wished to once again practice her flying lessons when she was a filly. The fun they had. They had to stop when Lorelai's duties in Saddle Arabia became much more important. Alicorns were under strict control besides Celestia. Allura was out of reach and Cadence and Laina were shut out from the world for their safety. Laina made dinner a little earlier today due to it being her 20th Birthday. Once Lorelai came home they talked over dinner. "Happy Birthday, my darling." "Thank you, Aunt Lorelai." They resumed their eating. Laina looked up nervously at Lorelai eating her dinner. Her thoughts were running wild. Finally she was an adult. She had built up the courage to finally ask Lorelai her dying question. Lorelai felt Laina's eyes wondering and without looking up from her food, said: "What is it, child?" "Nothing. It's just, I was wondering...if I could leave Saddle Arabia." Lorelai almost chocked on her dinner. "What?" "Auntie, I'm 20 years old. I should have left home by now." "And where would you go?" "I don't know. To Canterlot? I want to explore this world." "Hmmm." "Please, Aunt Lorelai, Cadence is a year younger than me and she lives in Canterlot, on her own." "Cadence lives with Celestia. As you do with me." "Please, Aunt Lor..." "No! I will hear no more about it." Laina looks down at her food, fighting back tears. Lorelai looks at her with a solemn look, fighting back the urge to tell her that she wants to leave as well. "Laina, please. I wish it didn't have to go this way. I wish you could be out there exploring the world. But you can't. Your existence is a secret that cannot be shown to the world. Cadence moved to Canterlot to be under constant supervision by Celestia and because her mother died. There are creatures in this world who want to take Cadence. Her powers as an Alicorn are too valuable and she would be much easier to defeat and kidnap then Celestia or I. Her presence is a constant threat to those dark creatures that want Equestria for themselves." "I wish someone would kidnap Stormcrow," Laina mutters. Lorelai pauses before whispering, "As do I." They were almost at the end of their dinner when Lorelai speaks once again. "Celestia has decided to send her best pupil to Ponyville, tomorrow." Laina was puzzled by this information. "Why would she do that?" "It is unknown to many. But I fear that it has something to do with Nightmare Moon's return." "Luna is to return!" "Nightmare Moon! It's name is Nightmare Moon. Luna is not a monster." "But why would Celestia allow such a thing to happen?" "She's not. She is powerless to stop it. One can only be banished for so long before they find a way back. It is said that the Stars will aid in her escape." "If Nightmare Moon is to return, what will Celestia do?" "I don't know. The pupil may be involved with or without it's knowledge of what is to come." A day past and Ponyville was preparing for the Summer Sun Celebration. Laina would always watch out of her window, awaiting the radiant Sun to rise forth and claim the sky. It was the closest she had ever gotten to meeting her mother's cousin. She always felt an admiration for the ruler of Equestria. To be under such pressure and to have faced so much hardship without anyone understanding surely should have broken her. Her strength was truly a sight to behold. Hours had past and Laina realized that not only had the Sun not risen on time but her aunt had not yet arrived home for magic practice. Laina began to worry. She walked to the door and looked out of the window beside it. The city was quiet and the lights were dimmed. Not a sound was uttered. A blurred figure soon became visible from the distance. It was running and fast. It was running towards the cottage. Laina backed away from the window and prepared for the door to be struck down. Nothing. Still nothing. Quiet. BANG! Lorelai came through the door with a worried expression and was breathing heavily. "Princess Celestia has been captured!" "What?!" "Nightmare Moon is back!" Laina took in the information before questioning, "What are you going to do?" Lorelai looked up with utter confusion. "What do you mean?" "Surely, you and my mother would do something. You are the only other Alicorn adults besides Celestia and Luna. Cadence and I would do what we ca..." "Enough! Your mother cannot do anything. She is already weakened. And you and Cadence will not be shown to Equestria so blatantly as if to show off your powers. It would be seen as challenging all the evil in this world. And I must stay in Saddle Arabia. My duty lies here. Alicorns no longer take precedence in this world. To Equestria, one Alicorn is enough. I don't know even what i would do. The ponies might see it as a threat. To see another Alicorn using her powers. It is scary and might compel them to rebel once again." "No! Surely, with great power comes great responsibility. As Alicorns, it is our duty to die for the ponies of Equestria. Even if it means killing our own to protect them." "You may be right but you must underst..." "NO! I'VE HAD ENOUGH! My whole life, I spent locked up in this cottage. I want a life that's true. My grandparents died for Equestria and kept it from evil. Now, Equestria see fit to be against Alicorns? What justice is this? I will not have it. I'm leaving." "What? No. You cannot leave. Where will you go?" "Orberia." Laina's P.O.V: The last thing I saw was my aunt crying out my name from the cottage. With all her powerful magic, not even she could stop me from leaving. I have to meet my mother. I will save her. It was a two day journey. All I had was my satchel, filled with a loaf of bread, a pouch of water, and ten gold bits. I was able to hide my wings. Aunt Lorelai taught me how. It took days but eventually I got the hang of it. Aunt Lorelai taught me almost everything I know. I missed her. But I had to do this. My mother needs me and I need her. Once I free her, we can save Equestria together. Celestia needs us. I passed a strange market. It was filled with trinkets from across Equestria and beyond. Yak horns, Dragon claws, Phoenix feathers, Hippogriff tails. It was so cruel. The creatures running the stalls were unlike any I had seen in my textbooks before. They were horribly deformed with tentacles for ears and mud for a face. They all differed in someway. I went to a stall selling food but it was not what I expected. They sold octupi and squid livers and dog feet. Eventually, I found some bread and Flash Bee honey. It is said to give an extra zing! It cost 5 gold bits. Far too much if you ask me. You could get the same stuff for 2 gold bits in a Saddle Arabian bazaar (market). I finally left with no trouble befalling me. But I did feel the presence of eyes trained on me the whole time I was at the market. I trod through a sea of shipwrecks covered in thick ice. The cold bit at my hooves and I felt my mane turn rigid. I cast a warming spell but it only did so much. I knew what I had to do. I would have to light myself on fire. It was the only way, I joked sarcastically in my head. As I past a red and black ship, I heard a rumble. I stopped. If there was any trouble, I could dispel it. Aunt Lorelai taught me magic in combat. With my knowledge of it, I say I could fight off two or three ponies. No more and nothing bigger. Another rumble. The ship beside me began to move. Is that possible? No. Is it? No, of course not. Nope, it moved again. It's moving. How is it moving? The ship began to settle the way a ship normally would on water. It had caused cracks in the ice to allowed the water through. A sweeping of purple magic turned the ship into a beautiful violet and black ship with fine wood and beautiful sails. It was renewed. A figure dangling from the mast. It was a light blue mare with a bright, violet mane. Was she friend or foe? Her horn was longer then most Unicorns, like that of an Alicorn. She called down to me. "Alright?" "What?" "I said: ARE YOU ALRIGHT?" "Yes." "What's your name?" "What?" "Oh bugger me, this one's bloody deaf. WHAT'S YOUR NA-You know what?" With that, the mysterious mare jumped down from the mast and I looked up in shock as she was about to hit the ground. Just before she hit the hard ice however, she cast a spell to levitate herself in the air and slowly bring her to my level. "My name is Sapphire. And you are?" What should I say? My spell to hide my wings were still in effect. What would she do? If she wanted to fight me, she could. She seems powerful enough. And a pirate. I might be a good trophy or something to sell at the market. "Hello? Ok. Don't tell me. It's fine. You look lost. Are you?" "I guess." "It speaks! I'm from Canterlot by the way and I'm 20 years old. I'm a pirate looking for a ship. And I found one. What about you? It would be nice to know something." I need to tell her something. I'll tell her the truth. No, don't.Tell her. Don't! "My name is Laina Charm, I'm 20 years old and I'm from Saddle Arabia. My father was from Cloudsdale. My mother is a forgotten kingdom called Orberia. And I am an Alicorn." Idiot. "No you ain't. I don't think you noticed but you..." Her eyes widened as she looked to see my wings which I now revealed. Fool. "Is your mother or father royalty by any chance?" "My mother is." "Nice. My grandma was Royalty. A Royal pain in the arse. Luckily, she's dead now. Old bat. Her name was Grammy Granite. She loved rocks. She used to eat them. Until she lost her teeth. Then she would just suck them. Do you need a ride?" "The whole sea is frozen." "Not when you have magic. I am quite advanced in fire and water spells. They are the best combo. But, I wouldn't mind the help?" "Of course!" "Great, so where are you headed?" "I was going to meet my mother for the first time." "First time?" "I had to leave the kingdom when I was born. She wasn't married to my father. I was born in secret. Then my aunt took me away for my safety and raised me in Saddle Arabia." "Who's your aunt?" "Lady Lorelai." "Oh, bugger a Dragon. That woman is your aunt? Cheese and crackers, that woman is scary. The whole Mistress of Death thing. So cool. I would love to meet her one day. I do admire her so." "You do?" "Yeah. She's amazing. Her magical power can't be matched. I wish I had her magic. Anyways, let's get to work." We got on board the ship and prepared our spell. Sapphire counted to three and on the third, we let out an inferno of fire and ember. The ice began to thaw until nothing remained but water. We set sail. Soon, i would meet my mother. I would rid her of Sultry and Stormcrow forever. But who knows how powerful Stormcrow is? What if he beats me? What if i can't help my mother? What if i only make things worse? "Who's Stormcrow?" I turn around, suprised by the intrusion. "What?" "Oh sorry, you were thinking aloud weren't you." "Stormcrow is my half-brother. A vain, racist Alicorn." "Another Alicorn? Gosh, I thought there would be a shortage of Alicorns ever since they fled Equestria and traveled to the Haven Lands." "The what?" "The Haven Lands. It is said to be a mysterious land beyond the Mountains of Storms that only Alicorns can travel to. When an Alicorn dies, they go to the Haven Lands." "I see. I never knew about that." "You know, I did hear a rumor that when Chrysalis took the role of Queen of the Changelings, King Otis, Queen Lapis and the others tried to kill her. A bit foolish, since she can't die unless she says so." "That's strange. Wouldn't they know that? Anyways, how did you become a pirate? You must have been a well-off pony since you came from Canterlot." Sapphire looked to the ground. "When I was 15, I fell in love with an Earth pony named Oakwood. My parents hated our love, deeming him unfit as he wasn't a Unicorn. A bunch of bull crap if you ask me. We ran away together. We found a ship and sent sail for the Unknown. We were going to explore everything. One day out at sea and our trouble began. We came across Charybdis. She was the great whirlpool monster. Oakwood told me to steer the ship away. I did it too fast. He fell off the ship and was eaten by that sea-bitch. I lost everything that day. It was only a few days later when I crashed from not knowing how to sail. I ended upon an Island named the Isle De Muerta. There, I met a witch. She looked like a zebra but with a curved horn and tribal tattoos. Her name was Calypso. She was so beautiful, like a Mermare. She taught me the most advanced magic and how to be a pirate. I owe her everything. Now, I'm here." "I'm sorry for your loss." "Oh, it ain't anything, doll! He is in a better place." "You know, you are the first friend I have ever had." Sapphire paused and looked at me with kindness in her eyes. "That's the greatest honour...my princess." "Haha! Stop it. I'm not a princess. Well I am but that's not the point..." "You said your father was from Cloudsdale. What happened?" "He was murdered by the pony who wanted to marry my mother." "I'm sorry." We were silent for a few seconds when: "Don't say a word.." I stop and look into her eyes. She is scouting the waters. She walks close to the rails. As I follow, I begin to hear a quiet humming. It soon turns to a melody. "Do you hear that? That is the song of the Mermares. We're safe. Mermares only eat stallions. With mares, they let out a beautiful song." This is how I imagine the song of the Mermares. I personally love it. You can listen to it while reading if you want. pirates_of_the_caribbean_4_soundtrack_hd_8_mermaids_hans_zimmer_mp3_1866.mp3 As i watch the moving waters, i begin to see silhouettes of unicorns with fish tails. Their voice is so soothing. I move backwards, away from the water. My eyes began to droop close as my body sways from side to side until...THUD! The last thing i hear is Sapphire's voice shouting my name. My eyes begin to open and i squint at the blinding light. Dozens of crystals hang from the ceiling and as i look around, i soon realise that i'm in a cave. I can smell the scent of the salty sea and i see a unicorn walking towards me. Sapphire? No. It's a zebra...with a horn? A curved horn! How strange. She was beautiful with red, tribal tattoos covering her body and a sea-blue ragged dress. She begins to talk in an accent as beautiful as her appearance. "Rest, child. You are weary." "What happened?" "Your immune system is weak. It seems to me that you have rarely left the safety of your home." "Can you help me?" "Do not fret, my dear. I will fix you with a simple elixir. Drink this." I took the bottle with my magic and drank all the contents of the elixir. It tasted like sweet milk, sprinkled with honey and butter. "Where is Sapphire?" "She is waiting outside." I look to the opening that lead out to a beautiful view of the sea and all its glory.I turn back to see the zebra hunched over a table of potions and scrolls. I get up from the table of rock and walk slowly towards her. "You're Calypso, aren't you?" She turns her head to the side. "Yes." "The great sorceress who taught Sapphire everything she knows." "I taught her nothing. It is the pupil who allows themselves to be taught and therefore absorbs all the knowledge on their own. You. You are the lost princess." "I was thinking about something Sapphire told me. It was very peculiar. She said that water and fire were the perfect combo. How do you teach someone to wield both fire and water in harmony together yet they are so opposite?" "Ah...look upon my dress and my tattoos. Both red and blue. They mix, countering each other in perfect harmony." "But i don't understand, how can you find harmony or peace in something so different? Surely, they repel each other." "On the contrary, my dear. You must have both water and fire to have balance and balance is peace. Darkness and Darkness cannot make Light. It simply makes more Darkness. You need two different things to make something new and wonderful." "That is very interesting." "My dear, above all, you should know the most. You are the granddaughter of the great Water Queen, Serena and the Fire King, Solaris. You have Water running through your veins and Fire surging through your heart. Your body is in peace with itself." I couldn't believe what i was hearing. I rarely heard of my grandparents. My aunt never gave me textbooks on the Alicorns. She thought it would make me rebel. "You wish to reunite yourself with your mother. I will help you." "Why?" "You are a friend of my adopted daughter and...i was once a mother. But my daughter was taken from me by the cruel, untamed seas. I can get you to Orberia. I will find the potion but it may take some time to prepare." "Thank you." I leave Calypso to search for the potion and i walk out from the entrance. As i leave, i am gifted with a great gush of salty wind. To my left, Sapphire is setting the sails in her boat. I travel down to meet her. The island is small with one small port for Sapphire to leave her ships. "Sapphire!" "Laina! You're okay! Good. I trust Calypso kept you good company." "Yes. She is going to send us to Orberia." "I know. Laina, there is someone i would like you to meet." "Who?" "Gabriella. She is a great friend of mine. GABRIELLA!" A great beast came swooping down from the mast. It's wings were enormous and a wondrous shade of light blue. Her eyes were deep pools of water. She was magnificent. "YOU'RE A GRIFFIN?!?!" "Haha! The name's Gabriella." "The name's Laina. I've never met a Griffin before. It's so nice to meet you." "Woah there, Laina! Don't smother her." "Haha, Sorry. Just got a bit excited." "It's fine. So, are you ready?" "YUP!" "My little ponies! I have found it!" We race to the cave's entrance. I was beyond excitement. I flew to the hole and was greeted by Calypso holding a phial with a sea blue liquid. She gave it to me and i held it within my aura. Sapphire was next, followed by Gabriella. Gabriella eyed the phial quizzically. "So this will get us to your homeland?" I turned to Calypso, expecting her to answer. "It shall. With it's magic, it can teleport you to the place you desire. Once Laina drinks it, you both must grab on to her." I looked at Calypso with grateful eyes. "Thank you, Calypso." She smiled and gestured me to drink it. "Now hurry. You do not know how much time we have to save your mother." I nodded and drank the contents of the phial. As soon as i had finished, i felt a claw on my right wing and a hoof on my left. A great magical wave began to swirl around us until it engulfed all of us. A bright flash was the last thing i saw until the water evaporated and we stood on sandy ground. I took in my surroundings and my eyes fell on a decrepit gate. It was as big as full grown Dragon and had two statues on either side. One depicted a beautiful female Alicorn with a swirling mane and tail of crystal water while the other was a dashing male Alicorn with a mane and tail of burning, ember fire. I walked closer until I was a breath away from the gate. I opened it with a nudge and walked through. Gabriella and Sapphire followed close behind, weary of anything strange. Not that anything was not strange. We walked past hundreds of house, brought down by time and reduced to mere bricks stacked together. We continued to walk until we were faced with the full splendor of an ancient castle. No guards? No anypony? The whole area was desolate. Gabriella walked up beside me. "What happened to this place?" I replied, "My aunt told me that once Stormcrow, my half-brother, was born the ponies of Orberia were fed up of the reign of Sultry. They loved my mother but they betrayed her in her most dire time of need." "I'm sorry. My parents are both dead. They were killed by Nightmare Moon. She was on a killing spree when there were those who openly defied her. Princess Celestia was terrified for days until she banished her." "What? But Princes Celestia immediately banished her on the day Luna turned into Nightmare Moon." "Yeah, that's not true. The Moon was up for days. She terrorized the villages and killed those who opposed her. Celestia hid in Castle Cosmos in the Everfree Forest until she knew it was time. She had to banish her sister." "I see." I can't believe it. The pain it must have caused her to banish her own sister. I wish i could swap places with her and i could banish Stormcrow. We walked up to the doors of the castle. They were wide open. We stepped inside and were suddenly greeted with a gush of color and gold. It was beautiful. The mix of red and blue with clashes of gold and silver. We walked to the centre of the vast room. I set my eyes on the throne. A giant chair carved out of the finest marble. It was beautiful and covered with red velvet cushions with gold trim. As i reached the throne, hooves sounded from outside. We all turned in unison and prepared ourselves for any attack. A purple hoof came first until a beautiful mare walked through the door. "Aunt Lorelai!" Lorelai turned to me and was overjoyed. "My dear Laina! I'm so happy to have found you...with a Griffin and a Unicorn?" "They're my friends." "I see. My child, we must leave." "What? No, my mother is here and i am going to see her." "Please, Lai..." "NO! I will find my mother and i will free her from Sultry." "You're right. We are here anyways. What is your plan?" "Well, you and I can go through the left corridor and Sapphire and Gabriella? You head through the right." Sapphire finally speaks up. "Let's go!" Lorelai and i began to walk towards the dimly lit aisles.. The corridors were long and covered by numerous portraits of famous rulers, wizards, witches and Nobility. One picture caught my eye. It showed Lorelai and Allura laying on the ground with Celestia as fillies. My grandparents and Celestia's parents sat on cushions as Queen Galaxia held Luna in her hooves. They were beautiful creatures. So majestic and omniscient-looking. Lorelai noticed me eyeing the wonderful portrait. "They painted that on the day Luna was born. We were only a few years old. That was over a thousand years ago." I looked at her, shocked. I knew that Alicorns have prolonged lives but i never truly thought about my aunt's age. We continued to walk down the corridor until we heard a soft humming coming from a room. We poked our heads around the door to see two mares in a giant, lavish bed. There was a male unicorn looking into the mirror and humming to himself. I looked away from the room to my aunt. She was frozen in her tracks, looking at the stallion. "Aunt Lorelai?" She looked at me with sad eyes, almost brimming with tears. I had never seen my aunt cry. "Who is that stallion?" "That filthy Unicorn is your step-father." "What!" As soon as i said that, i realised my mistake. He had heard me. We quickly back away but it was too late. "Who's there? Show yourself!" Lorelai and i came forth from the shadows. Now the two mares had woken up and attempted to cover themselves with the sticky, bed sheets. I looked upon the stallion with contempt. He looked quite young. Perhaps in his late 30s. I turned to Lorelai and saw the hatred in her eyes. She spoke in a voice that I had only heard once before. It was named the Canterlot voice and the first time I had heard it, it was because I had pushed by a stallion in the markets when I was young. He started to cry afterwards. "How dare you! Who do you think you are? Sleeping with these common whores while my sister lays in an eternal torment everyday! Your kind do not get to show such disrespect to us!" I realised now what Lorelai was doing. She was a regal Alicorn who cared for all ponies. But she also believed that Alicorns deserve the utmost respect due to them practically risking their lives to protect Equestria. Alicorns are feared by most other non-pony kingdoms for their power. Many creatures want us dead and to have Equestria for themselves. Therefore, our protection of the ponies put us at risk of murder. "Ponies like you don't deserve our protection! You should give us your full devotion but we are kinder than that so we only ask for your kindness in return. We die for you and you ponies seem to think nothing of it! I shall show you true power! I shall show you death!" As she said that, she let out a dark, bolt of smoke. But before it could pierce his heart, i deflected it with a force-field. "Laina? What are you doing?" "This unicorn is evil, yes. But i will not let you stoop to his level." I turned to Sultry and gave him my best death-stare, "You killed my father and for that, i can never forgive you. Go and take your sluts before i kill you myself!" Sultry ran leaving the defenseless mares by themselves. Typical. The mares got out of bed and bolted for the door. "Well done, Laina. Your mother would be proud. She cherished life, only harming a soul when absolutely necessary. The powers of Death did not allow me the same choice." "Aunt Lorelai, do not mistake your element to be you. The element is a reflection of your power. We are not our power. There is good in everyone. Come on, let's find the others." We exited the room and headed back the way we came. I think of what life would have been like if my father had never died. If my parents married and i lived as a princess. Constantly, I also think of my favourite witch, Pandora the Hippogriff. I remember her story like the back of my hoof. She lost both of her parents as a child to a dark plague. Ever since, she devoted her life to the brewing of elixirs and potions to aid others. She helped stop the plague from wiping out the whole of Terabithia. She was gifted with a necklace that held the powers of the Wind and Sky. Perhaps, though losing your parents is a horrible thing, it doesn't have to remain that way. Good can come from terrible things, if one only wishes to seek it. The light is darkest before the dawn. However, Pandora was murdered by the townsfolk after they accused her of leading the Changelings to them. A crime that she didn't commit. The Changelings never came and there was no evidence to claim. But tell a big enough lie and soon it will turn even the most sane ponies to believing in silly superstitions. Finally, we arrived at a ballroom with Sapphire and Gabriella. "Sapphire, did you find anything?" "No. We passed a few rooms but they were all destroyed." "I see. Aunt Lorelai, have you ever been here before? Don't you know where my mother would be?" "I lived here as a child but it is very different. That was over 800 hundred years ago. It has changed since then." "What about upstairs? We might find your mother's bedroom there.", Gabriella added. "Brilliant." We teleported to the top of the stairs with Lorelai's magic. We walked on and on until we found a room with the door slightly open. I opened the door fully and saw a bright pink stallion with his wings spread out and using his horn to hold something. His eyes were closed as he lay in bed and moaned loudly. Sapphire destroyed our silence. "Oh, sweet Celestia." Stormcrow covered himself with his blankets and looked at us with a mixed expression of anger and surprise. "Who are you! And why are you in my room! "I am your aunt! Now stand up straight and present yourself with some dignity. What kind of Alicorn are you?" As Lorelai said that, she spread out her wings in a threatening gesture to assert her dominance. So cool! "My aunt?" "Did i stutter? STAND UP!" Stormcrow immediately got up with a terrified face. Thankfully, his little, little, little friend had disappeared. "Why are you here?" At this point, i decided to make myself known. "I ask the questions here. I am your half-sister, Laina. I have spared your father but he has fled and you will never see him again. I can't imagine why you would care though. Anyways,I am here for my mother. You won't get in our way. If you do, I will kill you and I will show no mercy. Ponies like you don't deserve. You couldn't redeem yourself even if you wanted to. You blew that chance when you were rude to my mother. Common whore? You're one to talk. You probably sleep with every mare you meet." "Kill me? I'd like to see you try." As he said that, I let out a stream of blue magic. He flew to the ceiling and i met him there. Then, a great battle ensued. Lorelai let a black bolt head straight to him but he dodged it. I told her not to fight. He was mine. I conjured a ball of fire and it hit his tail, burning it completely. He was enraged.He began to lose control and missed almost every attack. Finally, I struck him down. He fell in a heap, too pained by the injuries to get up. I walked over to my friends and aunt. "Go find my mother. I will finish him." "LAINA!" As i heard Sapphire scream, I saw her leap in front of me to be blasted with a pink bolt sent from Stormcrow. I screamed, "Sapphire!" I sent one last bolt for his head, delivering a final blow to a disgusting creature. I fell down to Sapphire's side. She smiled up at me as I wept. Gabriella had now come to the floor next to me. "Go. Find your mum. And tell my mum that I love her." "Which one?" I asked. "The one who cared for me." I cried uncontrollably as her eyes began to drift close. Gabriella held tight to me and sobbed silently. Aunt Lorelai used her magic to levitate her off the ground. "She will meet your mother with us. Then she will have the funeral of a Queen." I smiled up at my aunt, with eyes blurred by my tears. We got up and walked out of the room. We saw a room with a female Alicorn, as beautiful as daylight, laying in a small bed. Tear marks covered her cheeks and were red from rubbing them. I turned to Lorelai and Gabriella. "I will go in alone and take the form of a unicorn. Then, when I show her who I truly am, you will both enter with Sapphire." They both nodded and I used my magic to hide my wings and change my coat colour to grey. I walked in as if I lived here. My mother heard the hoofsteps and looked up. She was puzzled. I guess the only other mare she ever saw was a whore. "Good evening. I am sorry to inform you that your husband has fled the kingdom and your son has been killed." Rather then look upset, she looked even more confused then ever. "Who are you? And what happened to them." "Your husband was scared by your sister, Lorelai. Your son was killed by your daughter when he killed her friend." Her eyes began to water once more. "My sister and daughter are here?" As I said yes, I removed the spell and displayed my wings in full view. Lorelai and Gabriella came in with Sapphire. My mother was crying without end now. My aunt carried Sapphire and placed her on a sofa. I ran to my mother with my aunt and we hugged her with all our might. Her tears fell to our shoulders. "My beautiful girls." "I'm older than you," Lorelai said as she pulled herself away. "By two years. Hardly a difference. Who's that? A Griffin?" "She's my best friend." "Last time I met a Griffin, he tried to marry me," My mother recalls. "I remember. But then I got you out of there." My aunt retorts. They laugh and my heart is overjoyed. I hardly ever saw my aunt happy and knowing that she was at her happiest with my mother was a gift to behold. "What's your friend's name?" "The name's Gabriella, your majesty." "There is no need for that, my dear." "She was friends with my friend, Sapphire, who was killed by Stormcrow." "That pony was a disgrace of my flesh and blood. I assure you that your friend will have a funeral fit for Royalty." With that, we left the room as I carried Sapphire. I stood next to Gabriella. "I'm sorry. I understand that you knew her far better then I ever did." "It's fine. She died like she wanted. Protecting those she loved. Did she tell you how we met?" "No." "I ran away from Griffon Stone when my parents tried to force me into marrying this pompous brat. I flew away and ended up in Horseshoe Bay. She docked there and brought me with her. She taught me swordfighting and how to sail. I lived with her and Calypso for a few years until I left and got my own boat. She's called the Navy Mast. She never let's me down. From then, I pillaged the ships of rich, noble stallions with enough money. We are the greatest pirates of the sea. My crew are currently sailing across the seas." "You trust your crew to keep your beloved ship safe?" "Of course. Many of them are Griffins who abandoned their lives. Others are creatures from across Equestria. Four Ponies, a Yak and a Dragon. My first mate, Gillian, sails the Navy Mast to Marina Harbour in Saddle Arabia and near the Arimaspi Stalactites. Laina? Is it possible that Sapphire could actually be buried out at sea as she would have wanted, with her crew and Calypso." "Of course." My mother called upon me. I trotted to her as Aunt Lorelai went to talk with Gabriella. "You are so beautiful, and your wings are gorgeous. Your aunt has told me that you are brighter than most Alicorns we knew at our age." "I doubt that." "Don't be so modest." After a short pause, my mother's smile saddened. "Mother?" i asked. "I am so sorry. I should never have let you go. I should have kept you here with me." "No. If you did, i would have constantly been under scrutiny by Stormcrow and Sultry. It was i who have failed. I should have helped you sooner." My mother turned to me with a stern face. "No! You could not have helped me. I can handle them. You have done nothing wrong. You freed me now and I am grateful for that. I am so happy to be with you now. Your father would have loved to be here as well." I smiled at her and she returned it to me. We continued to walk until we reached the decrepit statues of two Alicorns. "Those are your grandparents." My mother said, "The Alicorns of Fire and..." "Water." I replied. She looked at me with a surprised look and smiled. "Well somebody is a know-it-all!" My mother laughed. We walked through the desolate villages. The old houses gathered dust. Cracks formed in the windows and webs engulfed the roofs and doors. The Sun had disappeared with the radiant glow of the Crescent Moon taking it's place. The whole atmosphere was deathly quiet besides the sounds of Gabriella and Lorelai talking. The pavement was cracked and worn, with weeds sticking about everywhere. "Your aunt has also informed me of Nightmare Moon's return. Celestia has gone missing?" "It seems so. What should we do?" "Laina, I know you what to fight and help Celestia but i trust Celestia has everything under control." "That isn't good enough. What if Nightmare Moon kills ponies? Who protects Equestria if Celestia is missing? I thought that was what Alicorns were for. To protect the ponies." "You are absolutely right but listen to me, if the world saw you or Cadence then we would risk the lives of many ponies. Equestria is already under threat since Celestia is the only one protecting it. With two child Alicorns, it would not only anger the monsters of the dark but urge them to attack. Our parents were at war with the dragons of the South-West for two generations of dragons. If the Dragons saw you and Cadence, they would only see two easy targets to weaken the Alicorns. We already have an Alicorn queen who is ready to attack at any moment with her army of Changelings. There is nothing we can do. Your aunt and I will be there to take the throne only if Celestia is...incapable of doing so." "I still don't understand. Why can't you and Aunt Lorelai protect Equestria whilst Celestia is missing?" "The pony officials. They don't want us anymore. As soon as Celestia's reign is done, they hope for a Unicorn, Pegasus or Earth pony to rule. Though we came and made Equestria a better place, we also put a huge target on it and caused a lot of strife. They don't want Alicorn Rulers anymore but they wouldn't dare defy Celestia. They are afraid of what she might turn into. They have their armies and they have authority figures. They "don't" need us anymore. We came to imbue balance to this land. We did not care or wish for their love and praise. We came to make Equestria a better and safer place but they no longer feel the need for us. They want us dead." I turned my head to the ground in anger. We walked further until we reached Herculon Harbour. We found a small broken boat and mother fixed it. We stepped onto the derelict boat. "Where are we heading to now?" I asked. "We are going to Sendaria, the kingdom of King Darus; Celestia and Lunas' uncle." My mother replied. Gabriella questioned, "Why?" "Their lies a festering power in that kingdom that needs to be destroyed. We believe there are some creatures in that land that will be willing to help us," Aunt Lorelai answered. "We are going to do something about the evil in Equestria? We are going to help?" I asked excitedly. "Yes." My mother said with a smile. "I think i should go now. I should take Sapphire and go see Calypso," Gabriella recommended. "Of course. I will go with you. Allura, i will see you in Sendaria by the Evern Caves." Aunt Lorelai said. My mother nodded and Gabriella and Aunt Lorelai took off into the skies with Sapphire being carefully held in a magical bubble. I turned to my mother who began to turn the ship into motion. "Why don't we just teleport to Sendaria? Just show me an image of the gates." I suggested. "That would be very clever but each kingdom has an invisible magical force field that protects it from creatures or ponies teleporting inside." My mother answered. The Moon's everlasting glow remained in the sky for hours and showed no signs of movement. I looked to my mother who was calmly and steadily steering the boat to starboard (right). The stars were missing. All except for six shimmering dots that formed a semi-circle around the full Moon. "Laina. I need to tell you something." My mother said, breaking the deafening silence. I turned around, awaiting her to begin talking. "The darkness we are about to face is not be fooled by. It is a trickster. A dark being capable of tricking the mind and corrupting the soul. She is a powerful creature." "She?" "Yes. Her name is Umbrina and is a powerful unicorn. When King Otis fled Equestria and Sendaria, she saw an opportunity and took it. She came from the North but has remained silent for years until she sent an army of "ponies" to Canterlot. They were easily defeated but they didn't have Umbrina with them. We are here to stamp her out before she does anything else. Oh! And she is what is known as a Shadow Pony." "A what?" I asked. "A corrupted pony, tormentted by darkness and shadows. She is changed from what she used to be. Now, she is only evil and a simple shadow of her past self. The shadows were able to keep her young and youthful but she is possibly around 1900 years old." "Do you know her?" I wondered. My mother paused before giving her answer, "Yes...once. She was be tutored along side me, Lorelai and Celestia. She was a mage in training but one day when she was documenting in the Bad Lands, she came across a dark cave and was attacked by a...Tantabus. The embodiment of darkness and shadows, it is an evil spirit that will inhabit the body of a creature and enhance its' abilities to harvest the souls around it so it can "feed". We must kill her before any harm can come to the last resistance in Sendaria." "What do you mean resistance?" I said, visibly confused. "There is an order of warrior ponies who remained in Sendaria, even after the Great Retreat (fleeing from Sendaria). They then protected it but went into hiding after Umbrina took over. They call themselves the Topaz Order, which was the gem symbolic of Sendaria."