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  1. It was a quiet starry night at the Everfree Forest. The creatures are lurking. the waters, stagnant. The air, deafening. Then suddenly, in the middle of the forest. A rift opens and spat out an injured pony. It was a male earth pony with a white body, grey mane, and an X for a cutie mark. Covered in bruises, it clumsily tried to move quickly out of the place he was spat out off. And ended up falling off a ditch and hitting his head, causing the bruised pony to drift off to dream world. A few seconds later after the pony fell off, another rift opened. A draconicous came out of the rift. "I was sure i felt a very disturbing disturbance around here...must be my imagination." The draconicous went back into the rift and closed it. As the bruised pony lay unconscious, he continues to dream as the night continuous at Everfree Forest. " Light...light!... Wake up!" shouted the blue female unicorn to the unconscious white earth pony. The earth pony suddenly found himself inside a ruined building filled with rubble, fire, and explosion. "We've gotta get out of here! Carbon Crown.. she's here,"the unicorn cried. "we need to evacuate everyone!" As soon as she finished speaking. An explosion erupted behind the unicorn, flinging her and the white earth pony off the side. As he tried to collect himself, he saw the unicorn that was just talking to him, bruised and unconscious. As he looked at the direction at where the explosion happened, a big figure came out of the smoke. Six female Alicorns surrounding one female earth pony with a big black crown on its head. two of the alicorns serves as the chair of the crowned earth pony while the other two at her side and the other two at her back. "Light, i finally found you." The white earth pony woke from his nightmare with great fright and stood up from the bed he was laying. As he tried to collect himself once more, he found himself in a hospital of some sort. Then he fell back on his bed. "Calm yourself white, the worst is over... It's time to change everything."
  2. Chapter 6: Past Mistakes Two Days Earlier... Lee woke up in his home and looked around his room in confusion. He remembered what had happened to him back at Canterlot and tried his best to clear his mind of what happened, even though he could still hear the sound of everypony laughing at him. While both Celestia and Luna had helped him ease his burden and they asked for him to come back today, he still wondered if he should go back. "I do appreciate everything that they've done for me and I do genuinely like the both of them, I don't want to have to go through all of that again..." Lee got up from the bed and made his way to the door to go outside and he was immediately greeted by the bright and blinding light of the sun. He shielded his eyes for a second and the next thing he saw was a bunch of fillies running around happily while flying kites that were high up in the sky. As Lee continued to walk the streets, he saw a huge line of ponies in front of an ice cream stand and a pink pony that was serving the ice cream. Lee wondered if he should stay and then felt a rumble in his stomach. "Hmm, maybe some ice cream will help get my spirits up..." Lee walked into the back of line and was relieved of how quickly ponies were getting they're ice cream so that the line was constantly moving. But as Lee watched the line, he noticed something important: Everypony was paying for the ice cream. Lee searched himself and realized that he had forgotten his money pouch at home and groaned in disbelief at the situation. He was so close to the front of the line and the line behind him was stretched too far away. In an act of desperation, Lee tapped the pony in front of him on the back and ask if he had a few bits to spare, but he had told Lee that the bits he had were all that he had. After another moment, Lee sighed as he decided to leave the line and forget about the ice cream, which only soured his mood now. Just as he turned to go back towards his house, he heard somepony yelling for him to stop and wait for a moment. He turned around and saw the pink pony that was serving the ice cream run up to him. "Uhh, can I help you?" "Well, I'm hoping you can explain yourself, mister. I saw you waiting in line for Pinkie Pie's Chocolate Chip Sundae Supreme and then I saw you leave WITHOUT the ice cream! What's up with that, huh? HUH?!" "I-I'm sorry, I would love to try it honestly, but... I don't have the money to pay for it, so..." Pinkie looked at him in disbelief for a moment, complete with her jaw hanging down to the floor and quickly went back to her ice cream stand. Lee remained confused about what was going on and not a moment later, Pinkie returned with a bowl of ice cream and brought it to a nearby table. She asked him to sit down and he did so as she slid the bowl of ice cream next to him. Lee looked at the ice cream and Pinkie in disbelief, wondering if this delicious ice cream was truly for him. "W-wait, what? Is this... for me?" "You better believe it, silly pony. Now, I'm not leaving this spot until you try it and tell me what you think of it" Pinkie widened her eyes and did her best to not blink as she watched Lee. Lee could only laugh a little as he looked at Pinkie, but he then looked at the ice cream before him and felt his mouth watering a little. Lee took a bite of ice cream and got a bit of it on his face, but he smiled and laughed as he tasted the ice cream. He was blown away by how delicious it was and Pinkie noticed this as she started bouncing in her seat happily. "So, how is it? Isn't it the most delicious thing you've ever tasted?! I bet it was!" "I loved it and it tasted absolutely amazing! Thank you for giving this to me" Pinkie let out a loud cheer and started jumping all around Lee and trotted in place giddily. Lee smiled happily at this and let out a laugh, something he hasn't done in a long time. "So, how much do I owe you for the ice cream?" "Owe me? You don't owe me anything, silly. I gave it to you because I wanted to make you smile and brighten up your day! Happiness shouldn't have a price and ice cream should be no different" Pinkie smiled at him again, but looked away when she saw the line of ponies still waiting for their ice cream. "Whoops. I spent so much time with you that I completely forgot about the other ponies who don't have ice cream! I'll see you around... uhh, hold on I didn't catch your name" Lee smiled at Pinkie and happily answered her question. "My name is Lee and I thank you again for being so kind and awesome!" "Nice to meet you Lee! I'm sure that I'll see you around town again, yeah?" "No doubt! I look forward to crossing paths with you again, Pinkie!" Pinkie smiled at him one more time before she left him alone to finish his ice cream. Once he finished, he returned the bowl to Pinkie's stand and left the town square to go back to his house. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- As Lee made his way back to his house, he heard somepony calling his name and saw Twilight and another pony with lavender fur walk up from behind him. "Oh, hey there Twilight. How are you doing today?" "I'm doing just fine thanks. B-but what's been happening with you? I heard about... what happened up at Canterlot from Celestia and Luna and I just wanted to say that I'm so very sorry and I hope that you're doing okay." The lavender pony next to Twilight nodded in approval with her words. "Yeah, what happened up there was just not right! How could anypony just attack you like that? Hopefully you're doing okay now..." Lee smiled at the lavender pony and thanked her kind words, but remained confused as to who she was. "I'm sorry, I didn't catch your name. Who are you again?" "Oh, my name's Starlight Glimmer. Twilight told me about you and I can say that it's very nice to meet you" "Starlight? It's nice to meet you too! I'm meeting a lot of nice ponies today, first Pinkie Pie and now you. It feels nice to meet some new ponies." Twilight laughed when Lee mentioned Pinkie Pie and Lee looked at her. "Hehe, you met Pinkie? She was a hoof-full wasn't she?" "I thought she was nice. She gave me some free ice cream and we talked for a while" "Well, I'm glad you two got along. So, if you're not busy, would you like to come along and sit with us? I'm sure you could use some company and you can tell us all about what happened." Lee agreed to walk with Twilight and Starlight and went towards Sugarcube Corner to sit down and talk with the two of them. Once they all sat down, Twilight ordered milkshakes for the three of them and Lee asked for a chocolate milkshake as Twilight and Starlight both got a strawberry milkshake. As he took a sip of his milkshake, Lee sighed before he began his tale about what had happened at Canterlot and Twilight and Starlight listened carefully to everything he was saying. After an hour of talking, Lee had put his head down on the table and placed his hooves on top of his head in frustration. Starlight had became a little upset at what she heard from Lee and could feel a couple of tears well up in her eyes. "Lee, I am so so sorry that you had to go through something like that. If I or Twilight had known, you can bet we would've been there to help you. Nopony should have to be subjected to such humility and we are both going to help you make this right, right Twilight?" "Starlight's right, Lee. You're our friend now and we're both here for you now. And not just us, but Celestia and Luna too have said that you are always welcome to speak to them if you need to." Lee raised his head slightly and listened to every word they said, but still felt the pain of being ridiculed heavily inside. He felt more sadness in his mind and stood up a moment later and walked away from the table to keep Twilight and Starlight from seeing him be upset. Twilight watched him run away and both her and Starlight shouted at Lee. "L-Lee? Where are you going? Come back, please!" Twilight and Starlight followed him to a nearby alleyway and saw him turnover a nearby wagon and made it spill all of its contents onto the ground. Lee then pounded his hoof against the wall several times, only to them slide against the wall to the ground and held his head as he started crying from the pain in his head. "Idiot. Idiot! I'm nothing but an idiot! Stupid pony!" Twilight lowered herself to the ground next to Lee and placed her hooves around him as she hugged him tightly. Starlight joined a moment later and hugged him tightly too. Lee still didn't move though, but he could feel the warmth of both ponies surrounding him. "It's okay... It's okay. You're gonna be just fine and I know that for sure because you have us to help you. We promise that we won't let anything happen to you again." Just then, however, Twilight heard the sound of somepony screaming and quickly ran to the end of the alleyway to see a horrific sight: The sight of somepony's house on fire. A young filly and her parents were standing outside their now burning home and the filly was crying as she held her pony doll tightly. Many other ponies gathered around too to help put out the fire and watch as the house continued burning. "What in the name of Equestria?! H-How did this happen?" As Twilight and Starlight both rushed over to help out with the fire, Lee stood up and looked at what was happening, speechless to the destruction that was being caused. He looked away for a moment when saw the wagon he had turned over earlier had crashed into a nearby street lamp, knocking it over onto the house and caused the flame inside the lamp to start burning the house. Lee suddenly backed away from the scene when he realized how the fire had started. "I-I did this... I did this." As a strong sense of guilt and panic washed over him, Lee had suddenly opened up his wings, flew into the sky and quickly went towards the Everfree Forest without anypony noticing him. Once Twilight and Starlight had finished putting out the fire and made sure that the residents were okay, they turned back towards the alleyway, but it was now empty with no Lee in sight. Twilight looked around and called out for Lee but there was no response whatsoever. "Where did he go? He was just here wasn't he?" Starlight asked as she kept looking around for him. Twilight continued looking around until she had noticed the overturned wagon and street lamp and remembered that Lee had turned over the same wagon when he was upset earlier. Twilight gasped in shock as she realized what had happened and turned to Starlight and told her about what she found. "No... Not Lee! He would do something like this!" "No, he didn't do anything Starlight. He would never mean to do something like this! I guarantee that whole thing was just an accident." "But where is he? You don't think he... ran off do you?" "I don't know, but let's go and check his house. Maybe he went there to get away from everypony." Twilight and Starlight both agreed to finding Lee and made their way to Lee's house. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Lee continued flying in the air for another hour before he decided to go back towards the ground and he landed in a clearing with a stumble and a large thud on the ground. He stood up with his legs shaking and wiped away the tears pouring out of his eyes, unable to get the thought of him burning down sompony's house down out of his mind. "I can't go back there! I can never go back there again, not after what I've done!" The wind in the trees gave Lee a chill and he started becoming cold from the breeze. He made his way into the trees and thought about all the ponies back in Ponyville, particularly Celestia and Luna and Twilight and Starlight! "They'll never forgive for what I've done! They probably hate me now... And the princesses, who knows what they'll think! They'll probably have me hunted down and thrown into a dungeon." Lee continued walking through the forest until he came to a large pond, where he splashed some water into his face to clean the dirt and mud off of his face. "This is where I live now... I can never go back to Ponyville again" Lee sat down by the water as he waited for nightfall, uncertain for how long he would last in the dangerous Everfree Forest. Finally Finally FINALLY finished the next chapter of my story! Sorry for the long wait, my friends but I hope you enjoy my newest creation!
  3. Do you like King Sombra's story in the IDW comics? This might be for you... https://www.fimfiction.net/story/468381/the-good-king-returning-alive This story continues his tale with Radiant Hope while trying to stay as true to show canon as possible. In it, Hope and Sombra return to the Crystal Empire after gathering all of Princess Amore's shards, only to find that everything is not at all what it seems. It's a planned five-part series that began on May 15th, and will conclude on June 19th.
  4. This fanfic is not 100% complete. It is like the first chapter or one part of a bigger fanfic. Regardless, I hope you enjoy reading it! Daring Do and the Emblems of Shadows In the mists of the jungle, brave and fearless adventure pony Daring Do finds herself surrounded by a gang of Earth pony stallions. “Back off! Don’t you come any closer,” warned Daring Do. The stallions laughed at Daring’s response. “You think you can get past all of us. You’re trapped with nowhere to run,” one stallion responded. It was true. The stallions have cornered her in the trees, and she was in no condition to fly due to an earlier fight with Ahuizotl and his gang, where she injured her wing in the process. But still, I’m not going to let these lousy stallions outsmart me, she thought. She needed a plan. She knows she cannot attack head on because there were just too many of them. Twenty or so, she counted. She did not recognise these stallions before. She had never seen them before at all, and she wondered who were they working for? Daring scanned her situation. There was nothing but trees, but she sees that the branches from the trees can create a path for her. That will work, she thought. She quickly leaped into action, towards a tree with a low, thick branch. She then jumps onto another and another as if she were a monkey. If she was able to reach the highest branch, she would be able to jump over the stallions and make a run for it. The stallions simply just stood there, watching Daring move from tree to tree, helpless of intercepting Daring’s escape. Daring nearly reached the highest branch, but when she landed on the branch just before it, it snapped, unable to hold her weight. Daring fell from a great height and landed on some of the stallions. The unharmed stallions quickly captured her and tied ropes around her hooves and wings. “Gotcha! You’re not getting away that easily!” exclaimed one of the stallions. He then puts a blindfold over Daring’s eyes. Daring said nothing, as the gang of stallions took her away. Daring had no idea where she was going, but it was a long walk. Eventually, the stallions threw her to the ground. “Boss, here she is,” said one of the stallions. “Very good,” replied the boss of the gang. He walked up to Daring. “Look who we have here. Daring Do! Hahahahaha! You’re not getting away this time!” “Oh no,” said Daring, recognising the voice. The boss stallion removed Daring’s blindfold. “Caballeron!” Daring exclaimed. “So, it was you, huh? And it looks like you found a new group of henchponies who can actually do your job properly.” “Silence! I know why you are here in this desolate jungle. What you are looking for, I want them too. I already have one of them!” said Caballeron, in a fearful tone. Daring gasped. “You know what will happen if all of them come together. You cannot let that happen! It will doom all of Equestria!” “You know me well enough that I’m not here for the destruction of Equestria. If I get my hooves on all of them, I’ll be able to sell them for thousands of bits! I’ll be rich!” “But at what cost? If you get your hooves on all four, then Equestria will be in grave danger.” “Ah, Daring. A criminal mastermind like myself already has a plan to deal with that. In the meantime, you will stay here so you won’t interfere with my plans. I only have three more to find.” Caballeron then left through a door with his new henchponies, leaving four of them to guard Daring Do. Daring knew there was no way to escape now that she had been tied up. She looked around. She couldn’t make out where she was exactly, but she could guess she was in some temple. She looked up and saw that the room of the temple she was in didn’t have a roof. The position of the sun indicated that it was around afternoon at the moment. Daring, helpless, lied tied up on the floor with the four stallions around her. She was thinking of what her next move should be. Meanwhile, back in Ponyville, the Mane Six were having a picnic at the park. Twilight and her friends brought plenty of food to share. They were eating and talking about their adventure when they defeated the Storm King. “It was quite an adventure, wasn’t it?” said Twilight. “It definitely was. I so glad we were able to help the hippogriffs return to Mount Aris,” said Fluttershy. “I just hope there won’t be another one anytime soon. I was very tired after all that excitement.” “It was so much fun! I would love to go back to Seaquestria and make more seashell necklaces with the sea ponies!” “When I told Apple Bloom the story, she could hardly sit still,” said Applejack. “It was most certainly an exciting adventure. Visiting the land of Seaquestria has even inspired me to create a whole new line of ocean-themed dresses! I’m sure these dresses will look fabulous, and I can’t wait to show all of you!” said Rarity, excitedly. “Rainbow Dash? How did you find the adventure?” asked Twilight. “Huh? What?” said Rainbow Dash, surprisingly. “Rainbow Dash? Is everything okay?” asked Twilight. “Yeah. You’ve been awfully quiet lately. Usually talking about an adventure would get you all excited,” said Applejack. “Oh, sorry everypony. I just don’t feel right today. Something seems wrong, but I can’t say what exactly,” replied Rainbow. “I hope you’re not sick, Rainbow Dash,” said Fluttershy, concerned. “No, I’m not sick.” I think it’s something else. Can you girls excuse me for a moment? There’s something that I need to do.” With that, Rainbow Dash flew away. Everypony else watched her fly off with puzzled looks on their faces. “Should we go after her and make sure she is alright?” asked Fluttershy. “Hmmm, I don’t think we should,” replied Twilight. “I think whatever Rainbow Dash is doing, she wants to do it alone, otherwise she would have asked us.” Everypony looked back at where Rainbow Dash was headed, hoping everything was okay. Rainbow Dash flew as fast as she could, heading towards A.K Yearling’s cottage. She felt that there was something wrong and needed to investigate. Once she entered, she had look around and spotted a map on a table nearby. The map was already rolled out and there were marks on it. The marks showed a trail that leads to a temple of some sort. “I knew it! Daring Do needs help!” Dash quickly grabbed the map and flew off. “Don’t worry, Daring Do! I’m coming to rescue you!” Back at the temple, Daring was still tied up and out of ideas. No matter how hard she tried, there was no escaping the position she was currently in. If only I could get my hooves free, then I’ll be able to escape, she thought. Fighting four ponies is much easier than fighting twenty. In the distance, a rumble could be heard, getting louder and louder with every second. Not too long after, a flash of rainbow entered the roof of the room Daring was in. After a couple of seconds of colourful flashes, stood there was Rainbow Dash. The guard stallions lied on their backs on the floor unconscious. “Rainbow Dash? What are you doing here? How did you know I was here?” “I’m here to rescue you! I found this map on the table inside your cottage.” She gave Daring the map, which she stashed in one of her pockets. “But what were you doing at my cottage in the first place?” “That’s the weird part. I just sort of ‘felt’ that you needed help.” “You ‘felt’ that I needed help?” “More like ‘sensed’. I have no idea why I was able to though.” “Beats me as well. It must be a friendship thing or something.” “Probably. Anyway, is this another Daring Do adventure?” “Let’s not talk here. These stallions could wake up at any moment. Let’s go over there.” The mares quickly moved into the next room. “Okay, what’s this about?” asked Rainbow. “Right now, I’m on the search for the Emblems of Shadows.” “The Emblems of Shadows? What’s that?” “They are old artefacts. There are four of them out there, and Caballeron is trying to get them all. He already has one. His henchponies captured me and took me to this temple.” “Caballeron? Those stallions before didn’t look like they were part of his gang.” “Well, he hired new ones. Tons of them. Twenty at least.” “Well, no matter who we face, they are no match for the two of us!” exclaimed Rainbow Dash. “Anyway, what’s so special about these Emblems anyway?” “They are super dangerous. I read in ancient, old texts that if all four of them come together, their union could create a massive vortex that could suck up all of Equestria inside!” “What! Why would Caballeron want to do that?” “He doesn’t. He just wants to sell the Emblems to the highest bidder of course.” “Oh, right. No surprise there. What do these Emblems look like?” “They look like this.” Daring took an object from her pocket. It looked like a type of symbol with a picture of a Pegasus pony. “Huh? So that’s what they look like. Does Caballeron know you have one of the Emblems already?” “I don’t think so. But even if I just kept this one, I cannot let Caballeron sell the other three.” “Okay then! Looks like it’s time to find some Emblems! Where should we start?” “That’s the thing, I have no idea. I found this one in a cave in the jungle, protected by creepy three-eyed snakes. But considering that this is a temple, and that Caballeron took me captive here, the other two must be somewhere here in the temple.” “Then where should we start? Any clues?” “Not that I know of. The ancient texts said that these Emblems are well hidden and carefully guarded. I think the first thing is to explore the temple. Just be careful that there are no traps. Follow me.” “Lead the way, Daring! I’m right behind you!” A couple of hours later... “Found anything yet, Daring? We’ve been here for hours.” “Nothing yet, Rainbow Dash. Wait! What’s that?” Daring pointed to a wall that showed a scrambled image. A closer look at the wall revealed that there were multiple panels that made up the scrabbled image. “Aha! A puzzle! One where you have to slide the panels to create a complete picture.” “Awesome!” exclaimed Rainbow Dash. “Let’s solve it!” “Problem is that I have no idea what the final picture should be. The panels also look very similar to each other.” Daring stared hard at the puzzle. “It appears to be a pony of some kind.” “An Earth pony!” exclaimed Rainbow. “Look at the drawings on the wall. They all show an Earth pony fighting a different monster.” “Yes!” said Daring, excitedly. “And look at the cutie mark of the Earth pony. It also shows the same Earth pony. I bet that’s the picture of the puzzle. Look, Rainbow!” Daring quickly ran back to the puzzle and began sliding the panels. It didn’t take her long to solve it. Once she completed it, she stood back. The picture was indeed the Earth pony’s cutie mark. “Wow! Would it be weird to have yourself as a cutie mark?” said Rainbow. “Probably, but look at the wall!” Daring pointed to the wall where the puzzle was. The wall split into two, revealing a secret tunnel. “A secret passage! Awesome!” said Rainbow, excitedly. “No time to waste. Let’s go!” The two quickly ran into the tunnel, and once they reached the end, they stood right in front of what appears to be a number of loosely connected rope bridges dangling from the roof, over a deep ravine. “Look over there!” shouted Daring. “See that light? It’s an Emblem! We must get across this ravine to get it!” “There’s a river full of crocodiles! Look!” Rainbow pointed to the ravine below. Below was a river with tons of crocodiles, showing their jaws and sharp teeth, readying themselves for lunch. “We cannot stop here! We must get past!” “Can’t we just fly over?” asked Rainbow. She attempted to open her wings, but no matter how hard she tried, she couldn’t. Neither could Daring. “No good. Looks like we must do this on hoof. Stay close to me and follow my lead.” Daring jumped on the first dangling bridge. When she landed, the bridge shook very vigorously. “Whoa!” yelled Daring. “Come on Rainbow! Be careful when you land. The bridge will shake a lot.” Rainbow Dash leaped onto the first bridge with Daring. The crocodiles started jumping from the water, in attempt to catch the ponies. “Hurry, or our hungry friends down there are going to have us for lunch!” Daring shouted. The two ponies continued leaping from bridge to bridge. When they landed on the last bridge, the ropes that connected the bridge to the other side of the ravine snapped into two, causing the rope bridge to fall and hang from only the other two connecting ropes, leaving the two ponies dangling. Rainbow Dash, being at the bottom of the dangling rope bridge, was just a few inches away from being caught by the crocodiles! “Daring! Do something or I will get eaten!” “Hang on tight, Rainbow! I’m going to swing you across! Get ready! Help me swing this bridge!” Rainbow and Daring began to move their bodies to get the hanging rope bridge to swing, hoping to get enough momentum to launch Rainbow into the air. “That’s enough, Rainbow! Get ready to jump! On the count of three. One... Two... Three!” Rainbow Dash then jumped for dear life, from the dangling bridge. She easily made it across, landing with a loud thud. She then quickly approached the edge of the ravine to help Daring. “Daring Do! What should I do? I can’t reach you from here!” yelled Rainbow Dash. “Use a broken rope and throw one of the ends to me! Maybe you can pull me up!” Dash quickly grabbed one of the two broken ropes and threw an end to Daring, while holding on tightly to her end. Daring quickly tied the rope around her waist. “Got it! I’m going to jump to you! Hold on tight!” Daring took a massive leap off the rope bridge, attempting to land on the other side. She missed, but fortunately, the rope tied to her waist prevented her from falling into the crocodile-filled river. Dash quickly responded and began trying to pull Daring up. It was a struggle, but Rainbow was successfully able to get Daring onto the other side of the ravine in one piece. “Thanks, Dash!” said Daring. “It was your plan! I should be thanking you!” replied Rainbow, still panting from the struggle. “You know what? We make quite an excellent team!” “Heck yeah!” “Let’s get that Emblem!” Daring and Rainbow approached the glowing Emblem, which was attached to the hoof of a large drawing of an Earth pony on a wall. Daring removed the Emblem from the wall, and it stopped glowing. She showed it to Rainbow Dash. It looked similar to the Emblem Daring had with the picture of a Pegasus pony, except that this one had a picture of an Earth pony instead. “Awesome!” Dash exclaimed. “Two down, two more to go!” “Let’s not get too excited yet. We need to keep moving. Come on!” With that, the two ponies exited through a door on their side of the ravine. They had no idea that what they are about to face is going to be their greatest challenge yet.
  5. ((ongoing, an idea that's been in my mind since last year, and the Daring Do stories thingy in Events finally pushed me to try and work on it)) CHAPTER 1 It was the first night of decent sleep she'd had in weeks. Daring Do was never one to admit that she needed help. This was an issue she knew she still needed to improve on. "I work alone," was always her motto and it had gotten her into hot water on more than one occasion. But still, there were few that she trusted even now. And of those few she might call upon in such a time, already had their hooves full with their own problems. Celestia and Luna were retiring; she knew that much. And her most trusted confidante, Rainbow Dash, along with the other Element Keepers, were learning to take over their royal duties. It was quite an honor that she learned about it so soon; she was one of the few who found out before the Summer Sun Celebration. The thought of it snapped her out of her half-awake state. Daring turned over in her cot at the thought of it. She was still kicking herself for missing the festival. The last, the very last Summer Sun Celebration ever. Yes, the annual tradition would live on with a new name, but was the last one presided over by the current royal family. Why? Why did all of this have to happen now? "Can't sleep?" "I think my brain has been running for so long that it forgot how to wind down." "I'm not keeping you awake, am I? I've always had a habit of talking to myself when I'm wrenching my brain; I'm trying to be as quiet as I can about it." "No, you're doing fine. I couldn't even hear it over the fireplace." "OK, good. By the way, I... was so excited when I got here, I didn't get to thank you before, for the opportunity to work with you again. It's... quite an honor." "I know talent when I see it. If there's any puzzle I can't figure out, it's a good gamble that you can." She opened one eye and peered over at the gray-haired orange stallion who was sitting on a pillow at the other end of the room, turning an intricately-carved iron cube over in his hooves. He was wearing his best Daring Do cosplay. She wasn't sure if it this was a personal choice or it was simply the only appropriate outfit he had for the occasion. "Just don't go all fan-foal about this like the last adventure." "Oh, I wouldn't dare." "I'm just sorry that the others couldn't be here too. That would've been fun, for all of us to go on an adventure again." She hated to admit it, but it had indeed turned out to be more fun with a team." "Yes, poor Rainbow Dash. Of course, I will enjoy rubbing it in her face that this was the time that I got to go on an expedition with Daring Do, and she didn't." Daring Do smirked as she noticed Quibble's eyes widen. He jumped up excitedly. "I don't think this is a puzzle. It's a map!" Daring rolled off of the cot. "What? A map of what? A floating land mass with six sid--" "No, nothing like that. But each "side" is part of the map!" Daring trotted over and took the cube, examining it, noting how the patterns seemed to trail around in some places, but not others. "I think you're right! Now, but how do we plot it without ruining it?" "Iron." "What?" "That's why it isn't made of gold or silver! It's meant to be heated so it can burn an image into something! You alright with me trying this?" "If we're wrong, it wouldn't be the first time I ruined a priceless item." Quibblepants tossed it into the fireplace. "Now, we just wait for it to turn red--" The cube immediately sparked and floated into the air, engulfed in a red flame. "Whoa, whoa!" Daring exclaimed, pushing Quibblepants out of the way as the cube levitated from the fireplace before descending down the wood floor in front of them. Upon making contact, it burned an imprint onto the floor with a loud hiss of smoke. It then rolled to another side, and another, and another, until all six sides had burned an image into the floor. Whatever magic was in the cube then exhausted itself and it fell to the ground, lifeless and dark. Quibblepants poked it with his forehoof. "It's completely cold!" He picked it up and examined it again, and then looked at the floor. "Well, we have a map, and we didn't break this thing." The image on the floor appeared to be that of a group of islands, with contours of mountains and valleys, a vague impression of roads, and a couple of shapes hinting at structures. "Do you have any idea where that is?" Quibblepants asked. "It's familiar, but it can't be that, can it?" Daring Do pointed at an island in the center that seemed slightly reminiscent of a skull. "Have you ever heard of the Phantom Archipelago?" "The what? That's just an old mare's tale that they tell to foals!" "So was Nightmare Moon at one time." Daring Do grabbed an axe and began to cut into the floorboards to make it possible to pick up the map.
  6. Submitting this with just over two hours to spare. Good job me Procrastinating at every opportunity. This one involves Rainbow Dash, Daring Do, and an OC I whipped up for the occasion traveling through a very dangerous foreign world and almost dying on a few occasions. I wanted to kill somepony off, but I also wanted to keep the rating for this story fairly low. No gore in this one. Just a little bit of blood (I actually mean a little bit. It's not an exaggeration). That's extremely tame for a story of mine. There's a little bit of cursing, but nothing too heavy. Pretty sure it would still be rated PG-13 if it were a movie, as there is only one F-bomb (only one in 9,000 words of writing? Man, usually there's at least four or five in that many words, even more if it's a particularly exciting portion of text. I really toned it down for you guys). Also, I snuck in a cheeky Princewhateverer reference at the end. I've got a short (for me) story for you. I separated it into spoilers because 9k words is a rather intimidating wall of text (over twenty pages on Google Docs). Enjoy. Or don't. It's up to you. Also, sorry about the weird formatting. I'm used to writing on Fimfiction, so instead of separating paragraphs by a single space and indenting, I wrote using two spaces out of force of habit. Hopefully it's not too difficult to read. One more thing. I didn't have time to proofread, so sorry about any errors that pop up (I'm sure there are many). Part 1 Part 2 Part 3 Part 4
  7. Note: This story takes place anytime before Daring Doubt as I am going to use Dr. Caballeron as Daring's opponent. I also am not used to writting adventure, especially a short one, so I apologise if it lacks 'adventure'. This story is written for the Rainbow Dash Day: Daring Stories event. --------------- The sound of quiet hoofsteps echoed throughout the cave's dark passage, in tune to the dripping sound of water. A mare, with a hat balanced on her head and a bag across her back, slowly made her way closer to the tunnel's exit with caution. The last time she crossed this tunnel, she collided with a gang of bandits. They might not be able to stop her, but she'd prefer if less things stood in her way. Light started to pour in as she got closer to the mouth of the cave, ears alert for any signs of danger. Reaching the end of the tunnel, the pony stuck her head out and scanned her surroundings, her pink eyes taking in every detail. She was in a jungle, trees growing close together, making it hard to see too far but her trained ears could hear distant splashes of a waterfall, her destination. She turn to look up, seeing the sun high in the sky. 'Noon,' she thought. 'Good, it is still early.' Once she was sure that the coast is clear, she stepped out, shaking of dust from her brown coat and grey-black mane and ruffling her wings. After she made sure her saddlebag still have all her supplies, she trotted deeper into the dense jungle. The sound of nature and animals accompanied her like an endless soundtrack. - After nearly an hour of trekking, a lunch break and a squabble with a family of monkeys, the pony finally made it to her destination, a non-descript waterfall. She glanced one more time at her map, making sure it is the right place, before stepping into the water. The water, reaching up only to her knees, gently flowed and ripple as she waddled closer to the falls itself. But then she stopped abruptly, ears swivelling, eyes searching, for a sound, a sign. There. To her right, a silhouette, the telltale sound of a released arrow. She spread her wings and flew quickly, as the arrow struck right where she was. She look up just in time to see a figure throwing themselves at her. She flew back and tried to make her way to the falls. 'Almost there,' she thought flapping furiously. But just as she manage to make out an opening behind the wall of water, an arrow caught her right wing, causing her to tumble down into the pool. She groaned and pulled her injured wing closer to inspect it, just as a large shadow tower over her. "Daring Do," Dr. Caballeron greeted, a smug look on his face. "Caballeron," the mare responded with a glare. At the back of her mind, Daring Do accessed her injuries and situation. The arrow hit nothing fatal, but flying imediately is not an possible. Especially with the weapon still there. At least nothing else got hurt by the fall. Dr. Caballeron doesn't seem armed, but one of his henchpony has a bow and a quiver of arrows while the other seems like a weapon himself just by his size and strength. Chances of her getting away: slim but might be possible. She just need to dart through the waterfall right behind her enemies. She used her uninjured wing, hidden from view, and reach into her saddlebag, which, luckily, was magically waterproofed by one of Rainbow Dash's friends. "I was wondering when will you notice us," Caballeron continued. "It took quite a while, didn't it. But alas, your little adventure ends here." He and his henchponies stepped closer to the pegasus. "I doubt it. After all, daring is my name." Caballeron stopped his approach, confused, and Daring quickly threw a tiny canister at her enemies' hooves. As soon as it hits the water, the small object hissed and froze the water, trapping the ponies. While the Caballeron and his henchponies yelled and panicked, Daring wasted no time in jumping over her opponents and galloping towards the opening behind the waterfall. An arrow bounce near her head as the archer managed to get both forehoves free from the ice. Daring darted in and quickly found a loose boulder to seal the enterance. Once was sure she was safe, she noticed that the place she is in was brightly lit up. She looked around the tall, spacious cavern seeing torches lining up the brown-gold walls and a tunnel, the only other visible passage, up near the celing. Knowing that that should be where she would find what she wants, Daring Do was about to take flight when a sharp jolt of pain reminded her of her injured wing. She leaned back against the boulder and properly inspected it. Gripping the arrow with her teeth, she carefully, but quickly pulled it out, wincing at the pain. She folded her wing against her side and got up to find her way to the small tunnel. She remember packing a long length of rope in her saddle bag and the cavern walls are not overly smooth. Maybe she could try climbing up with her rope. - Daring wallked into the unlit tunnel using a headlight. The passage seem to go in one single direction and, occasionally, there are steps going downwards. She went on, following the tunnel until it finally opens up into a dimly lit room. She poked her head in and look around. The space is bare except for one item standing on a stone pedestal, the legendary Bracelet of Light. Just what she was looking for. Its soft glow lights up the entire room. Daring Do inspected the room and the pedestal for any signs of traps. Seeing none, she carefully picked up the artifact and place it in her saddlebag. She glanced around the room once more before heading back out. - Just as she reach the end of the tunnel, Daring Do could tell that something is wrong. The boulder that blocked the enterance is missing and yet, Dr. Caballeron and his henchponies are nowhere to be seen. Daring turned off her headlamp and peered over the ledge, trying to see if she can spot any of them. She stepped back when she saw nopony and tried to figure out her next move. There is a posibility that Dr. Caballeron saw that the tunnel is too high to reach and since he didn't have any pegasi with him, he just gave up and left. But Daring Do knows better. Dr. Caballeron doesn't give up that easily. His determination is almost admirable. - Dr. Caballeron glanced at his two henchponies then back at the small tunnel at the top of the cavern. He is certain that today he would be able to take the Bracelet of Light and bring down Daring Do from her glory. In other words, he will steal the light from her. He smiled at that thought just as he saw Daring Do gliding down from the cave. He signaled to his henchponies before they leapt into action. The archer shot an arrow towards the pegasus still in midair. Daring Do was only able to dodge the arrow but with one wing still lightly injured, she couldn't keep herself balanced and fell to the ground, landing in a practiced roll. The other henchpony wasted no time in pouncing on her and, after some struggle, he manage to pin her down. Dr. Caballeron stepped out from the his hiding spot and approached the adventurer. "Daring Do. I actually expected more of a fight from you." He signaled one of his henchpony for the pegasus' bag. Daring Do momentarily turned her glare to the archer as he took her saddlebag and passed it to his leader. "Well I expected more preparation on your part," she responded. "You should have brought along a pegasus or a unicorn. Besides the bracelet wasn't there." Dr. Caballeron ignored her, she used that as an excuse before, and tipped her bag over, pouring out the contents. An array of thin fell out, equipments, a map, but the braclet wasn't there. He frowned. "Search her." "Hey!" Daring protested as one of the henchponies snatched her hat. "Give that back." They searched for a while longer before they told Dr. Caballeron that they couldn't find it. "Impossible," he growled. "Where are you hiding it?" The pegasus shrugged. "I told you the bracelet was not there." She flailed her hooves slightly. "Now I would appreciate it if I can go." Dr. Caballeron finally believed that maybe the artifact has already been taken by someone else, probably Ahuizotl, and Daring Do isn't hiding anything. He nodded. "Release her." The Henchpony holding her down stepped back. "But be warned author, if I ever do find out that you have the bracelet, I will find you." Daring scoop her things back into her saddle bag. "If you found out," she retorted, flipping her hat onto her head before walking out of the cavern. - "But then what did you do?!" Rainbow Dash asked impaitently, pacing in Daring Do's cottage before pointing towards the Bacelet of Light on the desk. "How did you hide that glowing thing from Caballeron and his ponies?" AK. Yearling gave a smile."Well to find that out, you will have to read the Daring Do and the Bracelet of Light when it comes out."
  8. “From Nobody to Snombody” I was but a simple Snom, chilling out in the grass in a hailstorm. Suddenly, this trainer ran into me, damn near stepped on me. “Oh,” the trainer said to me, “A Snom. How cute!” I wasn’t sure what to think. Most trainers that ran into me typically run off or would get their grubby Pokemon to beat me up. But, this one was different from the others. He seemed to want to merely scratch me. He had one of his lackeys hit me with a Thunder Wave. It felt really weird and made my body tingle to the point that i can’t seem to move. He then pulled out a black ball with a yellow stripe and threw it at me!!! I ended up getting sucked into said ball. I tried to get myself free, but my muscles tensed up and i can’t budge. Next thing i know, i hear a click and i feel it getting picked up. I end up hearing that the trainer that caught me decided to call me Squishy. For Arceus sake, Squishy? Really? What am I, a gummy worm to......oh, i can see why he called me that. Anyways, we ended up going on a lot of camping trips in the Wild Area of Galar. I saw so many different kinds of Pokemon outside of the ice covered tundra i used to live in. They all seemed pretty scary, but my trainer’s team were pretty strong. I ended up watching them and learning how to fight, but my trainer still refused to let me out to fight. He stopped traveling a lot and pitched up a tent after shaking some berry trees. He always cooked some of the best food ever. He always fed me huge portions, or rather i always ate most of the curry he cooked. I liked how he always fed me. I mean, everyone still ate some of the curry, but i kept most of it to myself. He gave me this really weird looking bell. I dont know what it was for, but it was rather calming to shake it. My trainer sometimes went into some weird looking dens with lights coming out of them. He took one of his Pokemon with him and is gone for a few minutes. I know he always comes out safe, but i cant help but feel worried about him whenever he goes into these scary, dark places. He sometimes comes out of said den with a new friend, but he almost always has new berries and candy in his possession. He fed me these spicy-looking red candies. I was timid about eating them at first, but one encouraging look from his Pokemon was enough to get me to try them. They weren’t spicy at all. In fact, they were rather crunchy and sweet. After liking the first one, i ate nine more, then for some reason, my body felt like it can’t eat anymore of them. We ended up just camping and exploring all throughout the Wild Area from day to night. Come nighttime, however, was when everything changed for the better. “The time has come.” my trainer said as he looked at the moon then at me. I had no idea what he was talking about. Was he talking about dinner time? I sure could use some more food right now. And i was right, partially. We did indeed set up another campsite and had dinner. Little did i know that that was gonna be my last huge meal. After dinner, my trainer immediately took down the campsite and fed me ALL the mysterious blue candies he collected from the dens. “Eat up, little guy,” he told me “time to see what you’re made of.” I don’t know exactly what he meant by that, but i trusted him enough to gorge on those candies. Suddenly, i got this uneasy feeling all throughout my body, like it’s going through a sudden change. Oh my Arceus, my body IS going through a change. I’M EVOLVING!!!!! I think i lost consciousness for a second because the next thing i know, im not all that hungry anymore. I looked at my trainer, and he had tears in his eyes. Uh oh, I thought to myself, Did you not want me to evolve yet? Instead, he gave me a big hug. “You look so beautiful,” he told me with tears rolling down his cheeks onto my fluffy body, “Now, to make you extra strong.” He gave me the rest of the blue candies that made me this way. I felt, stronger. Like i can do anything. I now knew how to do some cool new moves like Quiver Dance and Bug Buzz. My trainer took me over to the Pokemon Center. At first i thought he was gonna put me back into the PC, but then he went to the guy on the left side of the Center. First, he gave me a new name. From here on out, I was known as Mothra. Next, he asked the nice man to teach me some moves. I ended up learning Air Slash and Ice Beam. Respectable moves to learn. Lastly, he oddly gave me a pair of boots. I have no idea what they’re for, but he says that they’ll protect me. I trust him. From then on out, he proceeded to continue hunting for more of those red and pink lights coming from the dens. When he came out with more candy, he fed me and my new friends, one of them was named Leeko, who looked like an Inteleon. We went on to the Championship matchup when it was suddenly interrupted by a scary-looking skeletal dragon. My trainer identified it as Eternatus. It looked horrific, like a hand reaching out into the land to grab onto someone to drain the life out of them. After my trainer and his friend vanquished the monster, he caught it. Is this what it looked like when he goes into those dens? I guess I may find out soon now that my trainer deemed me worthy of participating in the Championship match. The match against this boisterous champion was exhilarating to say the least. Many of us, myself included, got the wind knocked out of us multiple times during our match. I think my favorite part was when i went up against my opponent, a Dragapult. A couple of Ice Beams were enough to do him in. His own attacks, however, almost got me, almost. I was close to crying when i was at my limit. Luckily, my trainer took pulled me in, petted my head and whispered “Good job, Mothra” before putting me back into my ball. I got to see the final matchup from my trainer’s belt. Leeko versus our opponent’s Charizard. Both if them Dynamaxed at the same time. Leeko drew first, firing off a huge stream of water into that Charizard’s stupid face. The Carizard then exploded, shrunk, and fainted. Leeko then shrunk himself and was returned to his ball. The former champion threw his hat in celebration of my trainer’s victory over him. My trainer was the new champion of Galar. I was inducted into the Galar Hall of Fame with the title “The Galar Champion”, which is a worthy title for myself, I mean, i managed to beat a Dragapult for my team, for crying out loud. Anyways, days past after being declared Champions. Now, my trainer takes me, Leeko, Eternatus, a Dragapult of his own he named Pseudo-02 for some reason, and a Dracovish all around the Wild Area, always looking for those pillars of light. Finding more friends to play with. Oh, if you’re wondering about his sixth slot, he saves it for Snom eggs. That’s right, he’s breeding more brothers and sisters for me to continue my legacy. He tells me that with me as a Galar Champion, many young trainers will gravitate towards me. His plan with that was to breed a bunch of Snom, give them all cute nicknames, and give them out to young up and coming trainers, teaching them about the importance of bonds and relationships with your Pokemon, with me as a shining example.
  9. https://www.fimfiction.net/story/218728/the-needs-of-the-many (C) 2014 I've always wanted to visit Equestria (what Brony hasn't), but I soon discover that things very rarely happen the way you intend for them to when I suddenly wind up there myself. The ponies all live in a constant state of fear as a dark gloom lingers over the land, many of them suffering from life-threatening afflictions. Not only that, but I find myself with strange new abilities. What has happened here? What's happening to me? I will soon discover that I play a major part in the survival of the pony race, but am I up for the challenge that faces me? Part I in the "Guardian Of Equestria" saga. Cover Art by ThePleonasticPotato http://thepleonasticpotato.deviantart.com/art/Ponyville-at-Night-360066446 Chapter I: The Adventure Begins My life has not been an easy one by any means. I’ve had to overcome many challenges that most people normally face and even a few that’re unique only to me. My Little Pony has served as an escape from life’s demands while at the same time bringing hope to me, giving me the means to face the uncertain future with a positive outlook. I’m relatively new to this whole fandom of Bronies and Pegasisters, but I’ve found much to enjoy within the show itself. The art style, the cheery songs, the well-developed characters, the clever and often funny writing, the engaging, relatable stories and the positive morals they teach. All of these and more have captured my attention ever since I first saw the 2-Part pilot back in February of 2014 on Netflix. It is during these viewings that I have often longed to be part of that world: The world of Equestria with its beautiful scenery, mythical creatures, and welcoming inhabitants. What I never realized is that this dream would become a reality, only nothing at all like I originally imagined. * * * * * * * * My average day typically follows the same routine. I work at a local amusement park during the summer anywhere from 5-6 days out of the week. On my days off, I’ll either lounge around at home, call up distant relatives for a chat, or even hang out with the few friends that have time to hang out with me. This includes my girlfriend of two years, who was actually the one to get me into My Little Pony. We discuss the show a lot in our free time, check out fan videos, listen to Brony artists, the whole nine yards. While I do like all of the Mane Six characters, mostly because I see different parts of me in each one of them, my personal favorite of them has to be Fluttershy. I’ve just always loved her soft-spoken caring nature that people are quick to point out that I share with her. Personality-wise though, my girlfriend says that I take more after Rainbow Dash; the whole Element of Loyalty thing playing very strongly into that. And she’s not the only one to say this. My mom has mentioned on numerous occasions how I have a very extreme sense of loyalty in regards to who and even what I associate myself with. Along with the Loyalty aspect, there are the occasions where I share the often brash nature Rainbow has. Me and my girlfriend had planned to take the weekend off from work and go up to Old Orchard Beach in Maine: our favorite vacation spot. We’ve been to plenty of other beaches before, but there’s something about Old Orchard Beach that always has us coming back again and again. I had just finished a long day at work and was making the final preparations before our trip tomorrow. Everything was packed up, my phone was charging overnight, and I had just gotten off a Skype call with my girl to make sure she was all set for us to leave tomorrow morning. With everything all set, I went to bed, looking forward to the coming trip the next day. What I would not expect is that I would be taking an entirely different trip that very night. * * * * * * * * Now before I had gone to bed, I knew that there was supposed to be a lightning storm that night, but this didn’t typically bother me as I’ve slept through many storms before. However, this storm was nothing like I had experienced at any time in my life. The loud booms of thunder were enough to make me toss and turn in my sleep, all the while just wanting them to stop. Suddenly, the loudest thunderclap I had ever heard startled me awake in a cold sweat. Nervously looking around, I discovered that something was wrong. My room was much too dark, as if there were no windows to let in light. Fumbling around in the dark, I reached for my clothes, my glasses, and my cell phone. After putting on my glasses and clothes, I used the flashlight on my phone to find my way to the door. Opening my bedroom door, I expected to step out into the upstairs hallway of my house. What I saw before me was something entirely different. Before me lay a small town with colorful buildings, cobblestone roads, and, off in the distance outside of town, a shining, crystalline castle, unique and impressive in design. As I was beholding this sight, something about it seemed strangely familiar to me, but what? After looking around I noticed a few places automatically. Town Hall. Sugarcube Corner. It all suddenly hit me: I was now in Ponyville and the castle I saw before me was the Friendship Castle from the Season 4 finale I just saw back in May. Looking around, though, something wasn’t right. The whole place was shrouded in a greyish-blue gloom, almost like something you’d see out of a Tim Burton movie like Sleepy Hollow or Sweeney Todd. It was also far too quiet. Where was everypony? Taking a few steps forward, I heard a creaking noise behind me. Turning, I saw the now camouflaged door I came through closing. Running towards it, I reached out my hand to catch it, but it closed before I could reach it, disappearing from my sight. It was at that moment when I made another discovery. Looking at my hand, I discovered that it wasn’t my normal hand. It was still a human hand, but the color of it was more pastel and the appearance of it was more like a drawing. I held both hands out in front of me and wiggled my fingers. Looking down at the rest of me, I discovered that everything about me was pastel and had the appearance of being drawn in the ever familiar flash animation style used in My Little Pony. “I’m a cartoon,” I thought out loud. Several other thoughts ran through my head in that moment. What is going on here? What the hell am I even doing here? I decided to head straight for the castle in the hopes of finding some answers. Maybe Princess Twilight would know what had happened. All I could do was go there and hope for the best. * * * * * * * * On my way to the castle, I discovered upon further inspection that some of the surrounding buildings had taken damage. Windows were shattered, doors were left hanging from hinges, and even some buildings had a charred smell from where a fire had been. What had happened here? I also heard the sounds of ponies closing their shutters as I walked through the empty streets; the only sign of life in this desolate location. The castle was a good walk away, but I finally reached it after a few minutes. Entering through the gleaming golden doors, I walked down a rather lengthy hallway. The interior was as quiet and ominous as a mausoleum. You could literally hear a pin drop. Suddenly, I heard a noise off to my right. Startled, I looked towards a nearby crystal pillar where I saw a small flash of light rose colored hair. I immediately relaxed when I realized who it was. “Wait,” I finally spoke. “I’m a friend.” There was a brief moment of silence and stillness before a face nervously poked out from behind the pillar. Sure enough, I found myself looking into the soft blue eyes of Fluttershy. In the yellow Pegasus’ eyes, I saw fear and uncertainty. This made sense to me; she hardly had any idea who I was. For all she knew, I was probably just some hairless ape with weird clothes. In order to try to gain her trust, I crouched down to her level to show her that I wasn’t a threat. “It’s O.K.,” I whispered, softly. “You can come on out. I’m not gonna hurt you.” After a few seconds of standing there, Fluttershy slowly but surely came out from behind the pillar towards me. “That’s it, Fluttershy. Nice and easy.” At the mention of her name, she froze in her tracks. Finally she spoke. “Wait. How do you know my name?” she asked, unsurely. “Uh… lucky guess? My name is David. Are you here alone?” “Oh no”-Fluttershy shook her head, softly-“Some of my pony friends are here also.” “Is Princess Twilight here? It’s really important that I-” My sentence died right there for at the mention of the princess, tears formed in Fluttershy’s eyes. “What is it?” I asked, concerned. “Was it somethin’ I said?” “Something… terrible… happened to her,” Fluttershy managed to utter through sobs. As of the past few months, I had learned one very important truth about life from the show: Few things are more heartbreaking than Fluttershy tears. It was in that moment that I leaned in to hug her, offering what little comfort I could. She accepted the hug willingly. As we were embracing, something strange happened. A bright colorful aura emanated from the two of us like the Aurora Borealis before vanishing. What was that? I thought to myself pulling away from Fluttershy. Aaaah!!!!-Fluttershy’s pupils dilated and she jumped backwards nervously-How did you talk just now? At that time, I was really startled to hear Fluttershy’s voice in my head especially seeing as she didn’t even open her mouth when she spoke. Wait a minute, I thought. Can you honestly hear my thoughts? Y-Yes, I heard her answer back mentally as she cautiously approached me again. Unbelievable. It’s almost like we’re linked together psychically. Um… I guess so. You said that something terrible had happened to Princess Twilight. She’s not dead is she? I thought, nervously. No. She’s just… The tears came to her eyes again. I reached out both hands to dry them for her. It’s O.K. You don’t have to tell me what happened to her, but do you think you could show me to her? Fluttershy nodded silently and led me towards a flight of stairs. As we climbed each step, I started to feel uneasy. What terrible fate had befallen Princess Twilight that it brought Fluttershy to tears like this? I would find out soon enough. * * * * * * * * Reaching the top of the stairs, we walked down a shorter hallway before coming to one of the doors. Entering, I saw Rainbow Dash and Spike over by a bed near the balcony windows. Upon our entrance, the two of them looked up in mine and Fluttershy’s direction. “Hey, Fluttershy,” Spike finally spoke before noticing me. “Who’s this with you?” “Um… this is David,” she answered back. “David, these are Spike and Rainbow Dash. Has her condition changed?” Rainbow Dash shook her head sadly. “I haven’t left her side since we first found her here like this in case she came to,” Rainbow Dash stated, “but as of this point she hasn’t even flinched.” Listening to this conversation, I could only assume that they were talking about Princess Twilight. I approached the bed and, sure enough, the Alicorn princess was lying there with her eyes closed and an unhappy look on her face. Seeing her like this was heartbreaking. I reached out to touch her. “What’re you doing?” Rainbow Dash snapped at me. “I’m sorry.”-I recoiled at the outburst- “I was… just checkin’ ta see if I could find a pulse or a heartbeat.” “Oh. O.K.,” Rainbow Dash answered a bit gentler. I pressed two fingers against the side of Princess Twilight’s neck just below the head and felt a slight pulse. I also heard a faint heartbeat when I placed my ear against her chest. “Was this where you originally found her? In bed I mean.” “No,” Spike answered. “We found her collapsed on the floor next to her mirror. After finding her there, we moved her to the bed.” “And she didn’t even stir as you were moving her?” “Not once.” What do you think is wrong with her? I heard Fluttershy ask in my mind. “I think she’s in some kind of a coma,” I replied. “What’s a coma?” Rainbow Dash asked, confused. I’ve never had to explain what a coma is to someone so I tried to think of the right words to say, but also make sure that they understood. “Well… a coma is… like sleep… but different.” I struggled to find the right words. “With sleep… the body rests for a brief period… and then wakes up either by itself or by someone waking it up. But a coma… lasts a much longer period of time and… isn’t the sort of thing that one can be woken up from. Only the body itself can decide when someone wakes up from a coma.” “So we have no idea when she’ll wake up or even if she’ll wake up?” Spike questioned, putting emphasis on if. I never meant for it to be taken that way, but since Spike had already brought it up, I found no need to sugarcoat it. “Sadly yes,” my expression dropped. Rainbow Dash stared at the comatose princess with a look of worry on her face. “She was the one who first brought the rest of us together as friends,” she stated, sadly. “To think that she might not…” As Rainbow’s voice slowly trailed off, I walked over to her and placed a hand on her shoulder as a way of reassuring her. “I understand how hard this must be for you… for all of you, but Princess Twilight needs y’all ta stay strong for her.” Rainbow Dash nodded as, just like with Fluttershy, the Aurora Borealis aura glowed from the two of us for a few seconds. Whoa. Déjà vu, I thought to myself as I removed my hand from Rainbow Dash’s shoulder. Sweet mother of Celestia! Rainbow Dash’s voice echoed in my head as she jumped back. How are you talking without moving your lips? Wait. You can read my thoughts now too? Umm... I guess so, Rainbow replied, a bit unsure of herself. Why are you asking? Because the same thing happened to me and Fluttershy just a few minutes ago. Who are you talking to? I heard Fluttershy think. Rainbow Dash, I answered back. What? Rainbow Dash asked. No I was talking to Fluttershy. She can talk to you this way too? Yes she can. I can what? Fluttershy thought. At that point, I’d had enough of these two’s voices inside my head. “O.K. just stop!” I finally shouted. “Enough with this… psychic talkin’ you guys.” “What psychic talking?” Spike asked, totally confused. “The psychic talkin’ that happens whenever I touch somebo- uh… some… pony. Like this.” I reached over and touched Spike. However, when I touched Spike, nothing happened. I tried touching him again and again, but still nothing, aside from him laughing. “Ha ha ha ha ha ha. Please stop,” he begged through a fit of cackling. “I’m very ticklish.” “That’s weird,” I remarked, looking down at my hand. “Why wouldn’t it work?” “I don’t know,” Fluttershy answered back. “Maybe it only works on ponies.” “Maybe. Is there another pony here that we can test it on?” “Well our friend Pinkie Pie is out on the balcony,” Rainbow Dash commented. “That could work.” “Fluttershy, you and Spike go with him while I stay with Twilight.” “If you don’t mind, I think I’ll stay here with Twilight also,” Spike replied. “K.” Me and Fluttershy then headed out onto the balcony where we saw Pinkie Pie sitting there all alone. Her mane and tail didn’t have their usual bouncy appearance, but instead were flat and straight. Whatever was going on, she was clearly feeling depressed. “Pinkie Pie?” I spoke. Whether she was suddenly startled by my mentioning her name or if she was just naturally high strung, Pinkie let out a “Yipe”, jumped several feet into the air, did a 180, then landed facing us. Once she saw Fluttershy, she relaxed a little more, but was still slightly tense at the sight of me. “Fluttershy, who is this and how does he know my name?” she asked, slightly suspiciously. “Um… this is David and he knows your name because Rainbow Dash told him,” she answered back. “Oh. O.K. then. Nice to meet you, Davey.” No one has called me “Davey” since about 15 years ago when I was just a kid. Strangely enough though, hearing Pinkie call me by that name was soothingly pleasant, even bringing a smile to my face. “Likewise,” I replied. “So whatcha doin’ out here?” “Keeping lookout for whenever our friends Applejack and Rarity return.” “Where are they now?” “They went into the Everfree Forest looking for their sisters, Apple Bloom and Sweetie Belle, as well as their sisters’ friend, Scootaloo,” Fluttershy explained. “How long ago did they leave?” “It’s been almost four hours now,” Pinkie stated, nervously. “I’m really starting to worry about them. What if something terrible happened to them?” “Don’t worry. I’m sure they’re fine.” “But what if-” Pinkie’s sentence was cut off by her making a gagging noise as if choking. She collapsed to the floor as Fluttershy panicked. “Fluttershy, go get Rainbow Dash and Spike,” I told her, all the while trying to remain calm. “Tell ‘em it’s a matter of life 'n death.” Fluttershy nodded swiftly and headed back inside while I ran over to Pinkie. I panicked as she lost consciousness. Without thinking, I reached my hand out to touch her. Upon touching her, the Aurora Borealis aura appeared and then vanished. Pinkie then regained consciousness, gasping for breath. That was super scary, I heard her think, terrified. Are you O.K.? I asked mentally. I think so. Wait a minute. What’re you doing in my head? I don’t know. This has been happening with every pony I’ve come in contact with so far. First Fluttershy, then Rainbow Dash, and now you. That’s kinda freaky, but also kinda cool. Do you know what had happened to you? No. I was just talking and then I suddenly found it hard to breathe. Almost like when you laugh soo hard you stop breathing except this wasn’t funny at all. At that moment, Fluttershy, Spike, and Rainbow Dash came rushing out. “What happened?” Rainbow Dash questioned, nervously. “What’s wrong?” “Nothing now,” Pinkie answered. “Wait. Weren’t you choking when I went to get them?” Fluttershy asked, slightly confused. “I was, but then Davey here saved me.” “How?” “I’m not sure,” I spoke. “I was panickin’ and I reached out ta touch her when that strange aura appeared. When it vanished, not only could we hear each other’s thoughts, but she was also fully healed.” “Weird,” Spike commented. “Tell me about it,” I stated, frustratedly. “What’s goin’ on? Why is this happenin’ to me?” “I have no idea,” Rainbow Dash answered. “Maybe Princess Celestia will know. Spike, have you been able ta contact her at all since all this has happened?” “I sent her an urgent letter, but she hasn’t responded,” Spike replied. “It’s been almost a day now.” “Something’s happenin’.” “What do you think it is?” Pinkie asked. "I don’t know, but I don’t like it. Rainbow Dash, I need you ta fly ta Canterlot as fast as your wings can carry you. Find out why there hasn’t been any answer from her.” “You got it.” Rainbow Dash offered a salute before taking to the sky. “The three of you, stay here and keep an eye on Princess Twilight ‘til my return.” “Why?” Fluttershy questioned, nervously. “Where are you going?” “Ta the Everfree Forest. Someone needs ta make sure that the others are O.K. Besides, I think I know a pony who just might be able ta explain what’s goin’ on.” --- Author's Note: Chapter originally published September 24th, 2014 on fimfiction.net. If you enjoy this story and have a FIMFiction account, please consider supporting the original release on https://www.fimfiction.net/story/218728/the-needs-of-the-many. "Thumbs up" would help out a lot and, if you're without a FIMFiction account, don't worry. You can still look forward to chapters being released here every Friday. Same Pony Time. Same Pony Channel. Any support at all would be greatly appreciated. Thanks.
  10. No Spoilers! What are your thoughts on the Daring Do books? Which have you read? Where they good? Did you like them? Which is the best? which is the worst? Why?
  11. After all these years of being in the fandom and reading a lot of the fan fiction I now decided to really get going and make a story(and not give up on it after months of writers block). Hopefully it’ll be to others likings. Oh and, if you may not mind, should you find anything that needs critiquing, I’m all ears. Danke schoen. FimFiction link: https://www.fimfiction.net/story/419733/my-unexpected-new-life-as-a-pony-in-equestria
  12. After watching the final episode of MLP: FIM, I knew I had to get back into writing more FanFiction. After almost a year, I decided to finish the first chapter of my second story. Please be sure to check it out on Fimfiction (link below) and feel free to leave any constructive feedback or criticism A Sapling of Friendship A treasure trove of old books and scrolls, the Golden Oak library stood for generations, sharing knowledge beyond its roots, knowledge that stretched to the far ends of Equestria. For many, it was merely a library, but for Twilight, it was home. With its absence marks a growing dilemma for Twilight, a problem that begins to plague her and her friends. Things are changing, a fact that each of them struggle to accept. But as time moves on, will their friendship change as well? As the Mane Six reminisce their time spent together, they make a surprising discovery, a discovery that Twilight hopes will not alter their changing lives even more...
  13. Chapter 5: Time of Need As Tempest walked through the forest to return to her home, she thought to herself about how she could further help the ponies around her. After everything she had been through and the suffering she had brought upon Equestria, she was still unsure if anypony could fully trust her again. "I don't want to be remembered as the monster that almost destroyed Equestria... that's the last thing I want." Tempest stopped walking as she hung her head down and sighed. She could feel the sadness inside her grow as she started to remember what she did. "I-I am not... I'm not..." Tears began to appear in her eyes, but before they started to drop, she suddenly heard something in the distance. Tempest perked up her ears as she tried to listen for the source of the noise. After another moment, the sound became more clear: the sound of somepony screaming! Tempest took off towards the direction of the screaming and remained wary of any ponies that were in the forest. Finally, she made it to a large clearing with a pond in the middle and saw a pack of timberwolves surrounding a pony. The pony was a brown Pegasus with a black and red mane and he was constantly screaming for help and Tempest could tell how scared he was and also noticed that one of his wings was injured. "He needs my help! I must get rid of these wolves!" Tempest charged forward towards the wolves and made them scatter as she came closer. She stood between the pony and wolves and looked back at the pony behind her. "It's okay. I'll handle this!" The pony hid in the bushes and peaked through the bush to see Tempest. Tempest smiled at the pony and faced the wolves with a determined look, waiting for the wolves to make the first move. One of the wolves lunged forward but Tempest hit it with a blast of magic, making the wolf get blasted back towards the trees. The rest of the wolves then ran towards her and attacked, with each one trying to scratch her, but she grabbed all three with her magic. This amount of magic was making Tempest sweat and her whole form was starting to shake, but she remained strong as she let out a large blast of magic that threw the wolves clear across the forest. Tempest stood shaking and panting in pain, but a moment later, the pain went away and she went back to the pony she just saved. "It's okay, my friend! The wolves are gone now!" The pony stuck his head out and smiled when he realized that the wolves were indeed gone. The pony exited the bushes and went over towards Tempest. "T-thank you so much for helping me! I didn't think anypony else was out here." "Well, I'm very glad that you're safe now. Are you okay?" "Y-yes, I'm fine thanks to you" "Glad to hear it. Do you have a name?" "My name's Lee. What's your name?" Tempest hesistated to answer at first, as she didn't like telling ponies her name because she feared that they would recognize the name and get angry at her. She looked back at Lee and decided to tell him. "It's... Tempest. Tempest Shadow" "Tempest? That's a pretty cool name!" Tempest was suprised at his reaction and laughed a little at Lee's compliment and thanked him. "So tell me Lee, what's a pony like you doing out here in the forest by yourself? Don't you know it's dangerous?" "W-well, I was just... trying to find some food and a place to sleep for the night." "Out here? Do you... not have a home?" "No, not anymore. I don't live anywhere because I did... something and I'm afraid that I won't be able to fit in with all of the other ponies because of what happened. I don't want them to hate me and think that I'm worthless." Tempest was taken aback by Lee's predicament, but actually made her think of herself and what she was going through now. She stepped away for a moment and wondered what she should do. She didn't want to leave him out here in a dangerous forest and she knew that she had the power to help him. "Well... if you really need a place to stay, why not come with me?" "W-what? With you? I... don't know if that's a good idea. It's not that I don't trust you, especially after you got rid of those wolves, but I just don't want to be a bother to you" "No no no, it's no trouble at all honestly. You'll have an actual bed to sleep in, delicious food to eat and... a pony to keep you company." Lee thought about Tempest's offer and looked at her again. "Hmm... well, are you sure you don't mind?" Tempest nodded her head and smiled, which made Lee smile too. "Alright, I'll go with you. Thank you so much for being such an awesome and amazing friend! I don't think I've met a pony as generous and sweet as you." Tempest told Lee to follow her and he did as she said. The two of them returned to where Tempest put her supplies and retrieved them from the bushes. She reached into the bag and pulled out an apple to give to Lee, with Lee thanking her and taking a bite out of it. "So, where do you live Tempest? I'm guessing you live in Ponyville right?" "No, I live out here in the forest. I prefer the peace and quiet than the hustle and bustle of the town." "Oh, I see. Well, I'm still very glad for your hospitality!" "Come on, we're almost to my house." -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Tempest and Lee returned to Tempest's house and they both went inside as Tempest closed the door behind them. "Well, here we are. Make yourself at home and get as comfortable as you can." Lee went to the couch and sat down as Tempest went to the kitchen to put the supplies in the cabinets. She then went to her bedroom and took off the cloak she was wearing and placed it back in the closet. She grabbed a pillow and blanket for Lee and went back into the living room and sat the pillow and blanket next to Lee. "You have a nice home, Tempest. Thank you for letting me stay with you." "Of course, my friend. Now, I'm sure you must be hungry. Why don't I make you some delicious vegetable soup?" "Oh, you don't have to do that for me. I can make it myself." "Nonsense. You're my guest and I'm going to make sure that you're properly taken care of. Wait right here, I'll be right back." Tempest went into the kitchen and grabbed the things she needed to make the soup. She placed a pot on the stove and started cutting up vegetables and throwing them into the soup. After a few minutes of stirring and tasting, the soup was finally ready and she grabbed two bowls and filled them both up with the delicious and steamy soup. As Tempest returned to the living room with the bowls of soup, she saw that Lee was reading a book, but he looked up and smiled when he saw Tempest approach him. She placed the bowl of season next to Lee and smiled happily at him. "Here you go, a delicious bowl of soup for you. Hope you enjoy it!" Tempest started eating her soup as Lee tasted his soup and was surprised by how delicious it was. Tempest noticed the look on Lee's face and laughed a little. "I'm guessing you like it?" "You bet I do! This is so delicious and I thank you so much for making it for me." Lee finished the rest of his soup and smiled happily at Tempest. "Well, I'm happy that you like it. I'm glad that I could make it for you" Tempest looked out the window and noticed that it was getting darker outside. Tempest finished off her bowl and stood up to take both empty bowls back to the kitchen. She returned a moment later and started to yawn as the sun went down. "Well, I believe now is a good time for both of us to get some sleep. Hope you sleep well, Lee" Tempest started to walk towards her room, but Lee called her name and she turned to face him again. "I just... wanna say thank you for everything you've done for me. I swear I'll find a way to make it up to you. You have my eternal gratitude" Lee nodded his head in respect to Tempest and she smiled. "A chance to help a pony in need? How could I not help you? I thank you... for trusting me." Tempest bid Lee good night and went into her room. She stayed by the door for a few moments as she thought about Lee. "And I hope that he doesn't find out about... who I really am." Tempest then went to bed with those words and waited a few seconds before she closed her eyes and fell asleep. A/N: Next chapter is now ready! More Tempest is always a good thing!
  14. Chapter 4: Another Day... It was a very peaceful and calm morning in the Everfree Forest and all manner of creatures and critters were just starting to wake up and greet the day. One pony, however, had more of a sleepy start to her day. Complete with snoring loudly and struggling to wake up, she tossed and turned as she mumbled to herself in her sleep. This unicorn pony had reddish fur with a very red mane and tail and strangely, a broken horn. Her name was Tempest Shadow a.k.a. Fizzlepop Berrytwist, who was the former servant of the Storm King and the one who temporarily took over the city of Canterlot before Twilight Sparkle intervened and helped her see the error of her ways. After all of this transpired, Tempest decided to go out on her own and do the best she could to restore all of the damage she had caused. She decided to build herself a house deep in the forest, where she stayed until somepony had need of her. Unfortunately, this did nothing to relieve her of horrible nightmares, flashbacks and the overwhelming stress of what she did. Finally, after a few more minutes of snoozing, Tempest finally awoke and let out a big yawn. She got up from the bed and did a few stretches to get rid of all the cramps she had. Once she was done, Tempest went to a mirror by the bed and saw the messy mane that she now had. She actually laughed a bit at the wild look she had. "Hehe, I'll have to fix that up right away." Tempest grabbed the brush with her magic, but struggled a little bit due to her broken horn. She brushed her mane until it was once again straight and smile when she had her signature look again. "Perfect. Not that anypony will care how I look, but I should at least appear civil." Tempest went to her closet and got out a black and gray hooded cloak. She put on the cloak, but before she closed the door, she caught a glimpse of her old armor and saw the Storm King's insignia glowing. Just then, a horrible flashback of Tempest turning the Princesses of Equestria into obsidian statues crossed her mind, but she snapped out of it a moment later and slammed the door. "Why did I have to see that again?" Before Tempest went outside, she checked her supplies in the kitchen and saw that she was about out of food and suddenly felt a rumble in her belly. "And I was gonna make a delicious soup today. Well, I better grab some more food while I'm out." Tempest grabbed her money pouch from her room and hung the pouch on her cloak. She went to the door and finally made her way outside, but had to shield her eyes from the blinding sun above her. "Alright, I'll grab the supplies I need, maybe see if anypony in town requires assistance and return home. Simple." Tempest smiled confidently and started making her way towards town. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Once Tempest made it to the center of town, she looked around curiously as she started to smell something delicious. She saw a food cart nearby that was making grilled oats, but the line leading to it was stretching to the other end of the world and decided to forget it. "I don't have time to wait in lines. I should just get my supplies and be on my way" But while Tempest was making her way to a general store nearby, she remained wary of any ponies that might be in trouble. For now, however, all seem quiet and peaceful. Tempest entered the store and the clerk at the register greeted her with a smile. "Welcome, welcome. So glad you decided to shop with us! Can I help you find anything?" "No, thank you. I'm just grabbing some food and other supplies. I won't be long." The clerk nodded to her and left Tempest to browse the store. She went to the food section of the store and picked out the things she needed to make a delicious vegetable soup, but she saw some equally delicious cookies and cake nearby and decided to grab a few of those as well. "I believe a few desserts will perk up my mood. Hehe." Once Tempest was done shopping, she returned to the register and the clerk started bagging the supplies. "I thank you for shopping with us. So, do you live in town?" "Uhh, no I don't actually. I'm not really from around here." "Oh, I see. We get a lot of travelers from all corners of Equestria. Some come to see the princesses, other come just to see the sites, all sorts of reasons to visit. What's your reason for visiting us? "I'm just here to shop." Tempest quickly paid for the supplies, grabbed her bags and left the store. "Uhh... well, come back and see us sometime" -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Tempest went back outside and noticed how much busier it had gotten, with fillies playing in the street, other ponies chatting and food carts filling up with more lines. Tempest made her way towards the forest when she suddenly heard the sound of somepony crying. She looked around and saw a little filly who had dropped her ice cream on the ground, but her parents were waiting in a long line to get her another ice cream. The filly continued crying, but Tempest came up with an idea to help make this situation go away. She went over to the ice cream vendor and tapped her on the back to get her attention. "Excuse me, I don't mean to interrupt your ice cream business, but a little filly over there has dropped her ice cream. Do you think you could make a special sundae for her? I'll pay for it." The pony smiled at her suggestion and started making a very delicious sundae, which included three scoops of ice cream, a banana, a layer of hot fudge, whipped cream, sprinkles and a cherry on top. She handed the ice cream to Tempest and she was prepared to pay her when she stopped her and smiled. "No charge. That wonderful smile on her face is the only payment I need." Tempest nodded to her and returned to the filly with the ice cream. She kneeled down beside her and pushed the ice cream towards her. The filly looked at Tempest and the ice cream and smiled happily when she realized the ice cream was for her. "T-thank you! Thank you so much! You're so so so awesome!" The filly danced around happily and gave Tempest a big hug, which she was surprised by at first, but happily returned the favor. The filly went to her parents and told them about Tempest giving her the ice cream, but she was already gone before they could see her. Tempest saw this as she hid behind the corner of a building. She smiled happily at what she did and was happy that the filly was now happy too. "It never hurts to help those in need... Well, I should get going." Tempest looked back one more time before she headed back into the Everfree Forest. A/N: Hooray! I'm so happy I get to do another awesome chapter about an awesome pony. Hope you all like it and have a wonderful day!
  15. 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!
  16. [Principal Celestia, first page] Dear Diary... I have to hand it to Luna, she never ceases to surprise me. I mentioned to her that I've been having trouble sleeping yesterday and this morning she hands me this dream journal. I don't think I've even mentioned to her it's been dreams that have been bothering me but, well, she's always had a knack for knowing when something was bothering me. I wonder if she knew even before I told her. Heh. It wouldn't surprise me. It looks like she put a lot of effort into you, too. The moon-and-stars she put on the cover is a nice touch, but the dedication on the inside cover... "The best sister deserves the best dreams." Looks like somebody is getting something extra special for their birthday. Anyway, this is it for my first entry. See you tomorrow. [Principal Celestia, second page] We are stardust Floating. No, not floating. Nothing to float in. Just there. Then the city below me. No detail, no image, but I know it's there. Then moving away. Not away really, not moving, perspective shift. Feeling like I'm not there, was never there, not as a body not as a being. In space, no, not in space, universe around me, difference there. Stars, massive, burning. Feel them, all of them, a new sense, not synesthesia, something new. Thinking should be overwhelmed, first confused that I'm not, then frightened. Then feel becoming them, realize always have been. And that's the part where I woke up. I'm reading what I just wrote and it does make me realize think that's what my previous dreams were about too. It definitely feels familiar. I should probably ask Luna about it, she's always had a knack for figuring out what dreams meant. I might just be subconsciously remembering a Carl Haygan documentary or something, that would probably explain the whole feeling of oneness with the stars or something. It must've really bothered me in my sleep, though. When I woke up, the bed was hot. Like, right-out-of-the-dryer hot. On the other hand, I didn't feel sweaty at all. Weird.
  17. It was months after Princess Celestia had been to Sugarcube Corner in the autumn. The autumn ended, and Christmas was on the way. The Christmas days passed, and one day were Spike burping up a letter from the princess, and The Mane Six was invited to take part of a Hearth's Warming Eve play again. "We are invited to star in an outdoor play about the history of Equestria the day before Hearth's Warming Eve next week in Canterlot." Twilight said to her friends. The Mane Six got instructions about the play, as the Canterlot ponies was decorating the outdoor stage. The ponies and Spike could barely not sleep the day before the event. Later was the six ponies falling asleep, as snow covered Ponyville that night. In the meanwhile that night before Hearth's Warming Eve, was Pinkie Pie busy with delivering presents to everypony in Ponyville. Then the next evening came, and a big crow of ponies they had been gathering in the Canterot gardens. There was food, flags, Hearth's Warming Eve decorations and on everywhere at the garden market. In the meanwhile was the ponies building the stage , and the ponies waited for one of the biggest annual shows in the history of Equestria. Later that evening, was a huge firework opening the show, and The Mane Six entererd the stage while the crowd cheered. Some of those who came to watch the show was Diamond Tiara and her parents including Silver Spoon. The show began, and the curtain opened. Zecora she created the visual effects for the show, as DJ Pon3 made the music. "This is how Equestria was founded, and everypony was created." Pinkie Pie told the audience while visual effects showed the creation. Then the Unicorns, Pegasi and Earth had each of their song with the Canterlot orchestra in the background. "But for thousands of years ago Discord he showed up and disturbed the harmony, as both Princess Celestia and Princess Luna they was fighting Discord back that later turned to stone." Twilight said. A visual fight between the two alicorns and Discord was shown, as the audience they cheered. Ligths, magic and fireworks illuminated the stage. As the play ended with the Cutie Mark Crusaders song about Equestria, was the crowd giving them a long applause. While The Mane Six and Spike went to bed after the play, was Twilight in her bed thinking back to Rarity's speech she held for her five friends the day after the brunch for Princess Celestia in the end of summer. "Good eveing! Nice to see you all gathered here!" Rarity said to her friends. "As you know I decided to try and live in Canterlot for the remains of the year!" Rarity said. Rarity she had that plan since they saved Equestria as superheroes. "There are some friends here I knew since I was a filly, and it includes Rainbow Dash, Pinkie Pie, Fluttershy and Applejack!" Rarity said. The six ponies they gave a cheer for Rarity. "Thanks! I hope I see you again soon in Canterlot!" Rarity said and smiled.
  18. CLICK HERE TO SEE THE STORY ON FIMFICTION.NET Set around 400 years after the events of Friendship is magic, this story follows Scarlet Frost, who has had more than enough death and violence in her life, and has spent the last several years living quietly as a librarian and scholar in the city of Swanrun. Sadly, it seems that death and violence are not yet done with her. Forced to leave her peaceful home and flee for her life alongside a mysterious orphan filly named Primrose, Scarlet will have to use every resource at her disposal just to stay alive. In order to survive, she must confront the ghosts of not only her own past, but those of this long-broken world as well. 'Scarlet' is intended to be a lengthy and intense fantasy adventure, dealing with the themes of coping with grief and overcoming personal prejudices. I won't be putting any of the actual story in this forum thread, though, mostly because it opens with some pretty dark themes already being on the table. I hope some of you take an interest and enjoy it.
  19. The Summer Sun Celebration had arrived in the Canterlot Gardens with Princess Celestia and Princess Luna having their last Summer Sun Celebration ever under the longest summer day in June. The biggest crowd of ponies ever they went to the biggest Summer Sun Celebration fair in history in the Canterlot Gardens the morning before Princess Celestia’s final raising of the summer sun before Twilight’s takeover. There were games, rides, large shiny clear balloons in many colors on, candy and soda from all over Equestria strings and more as it was the final party before the End of Equestria. Everypony tried to stay up two nights straight. Streamers, horns and the pieces of lifeless balloons in many shapes without air laid all around that morning. Some of the many ponies who were in the crowd were Derpy, Lemon Hearts and many more. Berry Pinch as a unicorn and Cherry Berry were also in the crowd. Finally was the two ponies joining a huge crowd at the fair to see Princess Celestia raise the sun for the last time.
  20. i wish i'd travel to europe. canada. japan and s. korea. share your thoughts
  21. So me, my little sister, and my mom are planning to go to Portland Oregon this week! I think on thursday. I'm really excited! We haven't decided whether we want to take a plane, train, or drive there. I personally want to take a train. X3 I started wondering, do any of you all have plans for vacation like I do? If so, where are you going and how are you going to get there? I would love to know!
  22. Chapter 1: A Simple Request It was a very calm and beautiful day in the village of Ponyville, and everypony was out and about and doing the best they could to make the most of the time they had throughout the day. One pony, however, was still having a very sleepy start. His name was Lee, a brown pegasus pony who had a mixture of red and black in his mane and tail, and was also the latest pony to move into Ponyville, evidenced by the boxes dotted around the house. As Lee continued to sleep peacefully, he was suddenly awoken by the sound of his doorbell ringing and somepony knocking on his door. Lee slowly raised his head to listen to the sounds more clearly and groaned as he decided to roll out of bed to answer the door. "Be right there" he said, while yawning and stretching out his still tired muscles. He opened the door and greeted the bright sun that blasted his eyes with sunlight. "Yeah, can I help y-" Lee was interrupted when he realized that there were two royal soldiers covered in armor standing before him. Confused and uncertain on their sudden appearance, Lee simply said nothing and waited for one of the soldiers to speak. The light-furred pony cleared his throat and spoke first, magically making a scroll appear and unrolling it to read it to Lee. "Mister Lee, you are hereby requested by the Princesses of Equestria, Celestia and Luna respectively, to appear before them in the royal castle of Canterlot at once. They await your presence in the royal throne room and request that you come within the hour" Lee could say nothing to the words he just heard at first. After a bit, he managed to muster a question to the soldiers. "Okay, that sounds... great and everything, but what do the princesses want to see ME for?" The dark furred pony then spoke and answered his question. "We do not know. We were simply ordered to deliver this message to you, nothing more. But I am certain that all will be answered once the princesses have spoken to you. Nonetheless, do we and the princesses have your word that you'll be at Canterlot within the hour?" Lee simple looked to the ground and pondered about what he should do. He has never met the princesses in person, and has never given a reason to speak with them either, so why do they wish to speak with him now? Is there more to this meeting than meets the eye? Lee decided the only way to answer these questions was to speak with them about it. "Alright, I'll be there. I just give me some time to... get ready. Is that alright?" "Very well. We shall tell the princesses to expect you and we implore you not to be late for this meeting" Both ponies bowed to Lee and quickly flew off and back towards Canterlot. Lee watched as the soldiers flew off and glanced towards the castle for a minute, wondering what he should do to prepare for this meeting. Lee then trotted off towards town when he came up with an idea and decided to consult an "expert" on this situation. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ Lee came to the foot of a grand and very crystalline looking castle and knocked on the large doors in front of him. The first thing he heard when he knocked was the sound of something hitting the floor hard and somepony answering loudly. "Just a moment. Be right there!" Lee stood at the door for another minute, impatiently wondering if the pony inside was ever going to answer the door. He was ready to knock again when the door opened and a purple alicorn pony, known as Princess Twilight Sparkle to many ponies, stood before him smiling and struggling to catch her breath at the same time. "So sorry about the wait. I literally had a million other things to do at once and just needed time to tidy up. Heh heh, anyway, can I help you?" "Yes, you're Princess Twilight right? My name's Lee and I was wondering if I could ask you something?" "Hmm, Lee? I don't think I recognize your name. Are you new in town?" "Yeah, I just moved in about a week ago actually and this is a very nice town, very peaceful and tranquil... b-but enough about that. I was actually hoping you could help me with a 'situation' that I'm having" "Of course, I'd be glad to help you out. Go ahead and tell me what's troubling you." "Well you see, I just got this... summons from the princesses up at Canterlot and they said that they wish to speak with me in person within the hour. I was wondering, since you're a princess as well and all, that you could-" Lee was interrupted when he saw that Twilight had sort of frozen in place and that her jaw was hanging down, which confused Lee. " W-wait, y-you've been summoned by Princess Celestia and Luna?! What in the name of Equestria could they want? Is everything okay with them?" Twilight started pacing around and talking to herself, which only made Lee panic as he tried to calm her down. "L-look, all I know is that they want to talk to me, that's all. I was just hoping you could help me by... I don't know helping me talk with them" Twilight calmed down and looked at Lee and suddenly a nervous smile appeared on her face. "Oh, heh, right. I figured it was something simple as that, how silly of me to think otherwise. In any case, I'd be glad to assist you and, if you want, I'd even be willing to accompany you to the castle if that would help you feel better" "Wow, you'd do that for me? Well, it would definitely help to have some company while I talk with them. Thank you Princess Twilight." "Oh no worries, it's no trouble at all. Besides, I'm sure that it'll be fun to help you out and maybe I could even talk with them myself! Just give me a minute to get ready!" Twilight rushed back inside and started gathering important items and putting them in her bags. Lee noticed that Twilight was talking to herself again and stumbled around a lot as she rushed about, but this only made Lee smile at her strange behavior. "Okay, I think I have everything I need. We should get going if you don't want to be late" "Right, let's go" Lee and Twilight flew off and soared through the endless sea of clouds as they made their way towards the royal castle of Canterlot. As the two of them were flying, Lee noticed a bunch of other pegasus ponies flying by or relaxing on the clouds, with a couple of them waving at Lee and smiling happily at him, which he happily returned. Twilight called to Lee and turned his attention to her. "Alright Lee, before we get to the castle, we should practice how you should speak to the princesses. Now tell me, how would you greet them? Your highnesses or your majesties?" "Uhh, hello princesses?" Twilight stopped dead in her tracks and faced Lee. "What?! Are you crazy?! They'll throw you into the darkest dungeon they can find for speaking so informally to them!" Twilight stopped talking when she noticed the sheer dread and nervousness in Lee's expression. She laughed nervously and stepped back from him. "Heh heh, I'm so sorry Lee. I didn't mean to frighten you" Lee sighed as they continued flying towards the castle. "I don't know if I can do this, Twilight. You and I both know that I don't belong in a place like Canterlot and I'm afraid that the princesses just... won't like me." "Oh, that's nonsense Lee. You got nothing to be afraid of, and I know Celestia and Luna like and care for everypony, so I'm certain you'll be no different. The most important thing to remember is to just be yourself... and not getting yourself thrown into the previously mentioned darkest dungeon" Twilight laughed nervously once more, which only made Lee more nervous. "Heh, I'll keep that in mind" ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ Lee and Twilight finally reached Canterlot and landed next to the front gates. As Lee and Twilight approached the gates, two guards barred their way and looked down at the two of them. "Princess Twilight, how wonderful to see you again. Hmm, I don't recognize this stranger next to you, however. State your name and business here at once!" Lee cleared his throat to speak. "My name's Lee and I'm here to speak with the princesses." The two guards looked Lee over and then looked at each other... only to begin laughing. Lee was confused as to why they were laughing. "Y-you?! Well, unless you're here to apply for the court jester, I can't possibly see what they would want with YOU." The guards continued laughing until Twilight stepped forward and stood between Lee and the guards. "Hey, that's enough out of you two! He's my friend and my guest and I won't have you two making fun of him, I sure won't. Now, please apologize to my friend and let us through, or I will personally tell Celestia how poorly mannered you two are being. We'll see just how 'funny' she finds this." Twilight glared at the two guards and they quickly and nervously stood aside to let them through. "W-we apologize for our behavior, Mister Lee. Please head on inside and have a wonderful day! "That's what I thought. Come on Lee, let's not keep Celestia and Luna waiting" Lee and Twilight passed the guards and the gates and made their way inside. The entrance hall was a very busy and bustling area, with many dignified ponies dressed in formal attire going to all sorts of meetings and business arrangements. Twilight made her way to a waiting area off to the side of the hall and sat down on the couch. "Alright Lee, I think its best if you talk with Celestia and Luna alone. I'm sure they'll have a lot to discuss with you in private." "You sure I should go in alone? I really don't know what I should say to them." "Don't worry, I'm sure you'll be just fine. Just remember what I said: Be yourself. You do that and everything will be okay, I promise." "Right... Thank you Twilight. Now, can you tell me how I find the throne room?" "Oh, that's easy. You just take the main hall here, then you take a left, then a right and then take another right and it'll be the third door on the right side. The door will have a big sun painted around it so it should be easy to find. Anyway, you should get going, but don't worry, I'll be here when you're finished and you can tell me all about it." "Uhh, right. I'll see you later then" Lee made his way down the hall and came to an intersection, only to be confused by which way he should go, especially with Twilight's vague directions being of no help. He then decided to just keep going forward. After walking the halls for sometime, and passing by other ponies who were whispering things to themselves as they passed Lee, he simply stopped and became worried that he wouldn't make it to his meeting in time. "Man, how am I supposed to find anything in this castle without a map? I'm gonna be late and who knows what the princesses will do if I am" As Lee wondered where to go, he started hearing voices around him but nopony appeared to be around him. "Be careful with those books, sister. We need to get them to library as quickly as possible." "Well, it'd be easier if you helped me carry some of them. My back is killing me." Suddenly, Lee fell to the floor as something hard struck him in the head, making him hold his head in pain. Two tall ponies then dropped to the floor, one with white fur and the other with dark fur, and looked at Lee with concern. "Oh my goodness, I am so sorry. I didn't mean to drop that book on your head, honest I didn't!" Lee looked at the dark-furred pony, who had a very blue and starry mane, before him and quickly stood back up and retrieved the book. "Ah, it's okay. I should've worn a helmet is all. But I'm fine, don't worry about it." The white-furred pony beside her stepped forward and approached him, with her long and multi-colored mane blowing in the breeze. "Please forgive my sister's incident. We were simply taking these books to the library so that they'll be kept in better condition." "It's okay, no worries really. I was just trying to find my way to a meeting and I got turned around I guess." "Oh, are you lost? Well, the least we can do to make it up to you is help you find your way around. Where is this meeting supposed to be?" The white-furred pony asked politely. "I'm supposed to go to the royal throne room. You see, I'm supposed to be meeting with Princess Celestia and Luna and I'd hate to be late for such an important meeting" The two sisters then looked at each other for a second and smiled, which only confused Lee. "I suspect that they aren't far" Both of them laughed and Lee remained confused as to what was going on. And then, after a moment more of confusion, he finally realized what they meant. "W-wait a minute... What? You two are..." "Princess Celestia" The white-furred pony bowed her head. "And Princess Luna" The dark-furred pony didn't bow, however, due to the weight of the books that still occupied her back. Lee immediately bowed to them and nervously started panicking. "O-oh, p-princesses, please forgive my stupidity for not knowing who you are. I am so sorry." Celestia laughed as she looked at Lee with concern once more, trying to ease his worries. "No need to worry, heh heh besides, we should be ones apologizing to you for dropping a book on your head. You are Lee, correct? We have been expecting you, and we're so happy to finally meet you in person." Luna struggled with the books and found it difficult to speak. "Y-yes quite excited, but there is an important matter we wish to discuss with you and I recommend we go at once before my legs lose feeling. May we please?" "Of course, sister. Follow us if you would please, Lee" Celestia led the way as the three of them walked down the halls, with Lee noticing all the other ponies around him whispering and wondering why he was with Celestia and Luna. Lee then turned his attention to Princess Luna, who continued to struggle carrying the books on her back and Lee decided to help her out. "Umm, Princess Luna, I can carry some of those books for you if you want." "Oh, would you? That's so kind of you to ask, thank you. Thank you very much, Lee" Luna levitated half of the books off of her back and placed them on Lee's. The removed weight helped Luna stand up straight once more and helped her feel less in pain. "Oh, that feels so much better. Thank you for helping me Lee, I really do appreciate it. As you can probably tell, my sister here isn't too fond of heavy lifting." "Preposterous, dear sister. I'll have you know earlier today I carried a whole chocolate cake into the dining room" "Yes, which you then proceeded to devour within the hour of arrival" The two sisters laughed together, with Lee nervously smiling along with them, as he was still unsure as to why they wanted to speak with him. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ Lee and the princesses entered a room with the words 'Library' written above the door. The three of them entered and Celestia closed the door behind them. It was a darkly lit room with many rows of bookshelves, a desk in the corner and a large window which overlooked the courtyard below. "Wait, why are we in the library? I thought we'd be meeting in the throne room" "Well, we thought this would be a more... casual spot to speak and where we could also speak with you without interruptions." Celestia pulled up a chair and asked Lee to sit down, which he did. "I'll go get us some food in case we get hungry. Luna, will you stay and keep him company while I'm gone?" "Of course, sister. I have to put these books away anyway, so we'll be here when you return." Celestia left the room and Luna started placing books on the shelf, which Lee helped with. "So Lee, since we have a moment to talk, tell me about yourself." "Me? Well, there's not much to tell to be honest. I've been in Ponyville for a week, don't really have any friends yet, and... I don't know, I like taking naps and walking the streets. That's all I can think of really, sorry." "Quite alright. Heh heh, I also like taking naps, since you know, I can't really sleep during the night. But what of your family? Surely you have some right?" Lee immediately stopped what he was doing and stared blankly into space. "Uhh... right. My... family" Thankfully, Celestia reentered the room before Lee could finish his sentence. Celestia sat a tray with a steaming tea kettle and several slices of donut cake on the desk and filled three teacups with the freshly brewed and still sizzling tea. Lee sat down at the desk once more and Luna stood behind him as she sipped her tea and took a bite out of her cake. Celestia slid a teacup and a piece of cake towards Lee, but he didn't touch it and simply stared at his own reflection in the tea, making Luna look at Lee with concern. "Aren't you going to eat, Lee? You must be hungry" "I'm sorry princesses, I don't mean to be rude, but could one of you tell why I'm here please?" Celestia sipped her tea and calmly sat it back down and paced the room. "Very well. Hmm, where to begin?" Luna spoke first before Celestia could begin. "The reason we summoned you here is because we were hoping you could help us with a certain... well lets say project shall we?" "Project? What project?" Lee asked. "Well, the other day, me and Luna were discussing whether or not we were doing an adequate job of being princesses and the protectors of Equestria. And then I wondered: Is there a way to know for sure?" "Yes, and then an idea came to me. What if we hired somepony to study our meetings and our duties and have them see if we were doing things right. Celestia and I could then learn from their point of view and see how we could improve upon the results." "But then we realized, it couldn't be just anypony, especially anypony who are like the dignitary and important ponies who roam this castle everyday. So I and Luna decided to hire somepony who has never interacted with us before. And that's where you came into the picture." "We looked at the records for Ponyville and saw that you were the latest pony to move in. You were a perfect fit." "So now, here we are, and all we have is a simple question for you: Will you help us?" Celestia and Luna both stood before him now and waited for him to answer. Lee took a moment to take all this information in and just sat speechless. "O-okay hold on, let me get this straight: You want me to "study" you two... to see if you're doing a good job at being princesses?" "Yes, exactly. You would be our personal guest and you would travel with us to wherever we go in the castle. You'd get your own personal room here in the castle and we'll both make sure everything stays well for your stay here." Luna answered. "But I don't get it. Why me? I'm a nobody and I don't know anything about the two of you. How in the world am I supposed to do this if I don't know what I'm doing?" "Lee, that's exactly why we chose you. There's nothing more concrete than the perspective of somepony who is simply... normal. You're not learning from us, we'd be learning from you and your experiences" Celestia assured him by nodding her head in agreement. Luna then stepped forward and placed a hoof to his side. "Lee, listen to me. If this is too much for you, just say the word and we'll call this whole thing off. There will be no grief from us if you do, we promise. Right sister?" "Of course. We will understand if you choose to say no" Lee looked to the floor and pondered on what he should do. He knew that he knew nothing about Celestia and Luna nor do they know anything about, but at the same time, couldn't bring himself to deny their request. Maybe he could indeed learn something from this job and find some enjoyment out of it by interacting with the princesses. "Alright... I do it. You can count on me" Celestia and Luna both smiled happily and both shook hooves with Lee. "Thank you Lee! Thank you for agreeing to do this for us. And don't you worry, we promise that this will all go smoothly" "Thank you both for offering me this opportunity, princesses." Lee bowed to them once more, only for Luna to tell him that he didn't need to do that anymore. "No need to be so formal with us anymore. We're going to be spending a lot of time together and we want you to be comfortable around us, so no more bowing and please call us by our names, okay?" Lee laughed as he looked at the two of them again. "Very well... Luna, Celestia." "Now that were done, we'll bring you back to the entrance hall and bid you farewell. Please return to castle tomorrow morning and we'll both be waiting for you in the dining hall" "I'll be here. You have my word" ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ The three of them returned to the entrance hall and Lee noticed that Twilight was still sitting on the couch in the waiting room... at least that's what it looked like to Lee. Upon closer inspection, Lee saw that Twilight was actually sound asleep now, complete with her sprawled out on the couch, snoring loudly and drooling onto the carpet. "Oh, Twilight's still here? I thought she would have gone back by now. How long was that meeting?" Luna consulted the clock on the wall behind her. "About two hours. She must have fallen asleep while she was waiting for you" "Heh heh, did you come here with her? I'm not surprised she decided to accompany you given the circumstances." Celestia laughed a little as she moved over to Twilight and shook her softly to make her wake up. Twilight snorted a second before she opened her eyes and bolted out of the couch to face Lee, who was standing next to her. "Oh, hey Lee. I was wondering when you were going to be done, but I just closed my eyes a bit, I swear. So tell me, how did your meeting with Celestia and Luna go?" Celestia stepped forward, making Twilight immediately bow on the spot. "I'd say it went very well. Lee here has just agreed to stay here in the castle with us and assist us with our duties." Twilight jumped about gleefully at the news and looked at Lee. "Oh wow, that's wonderful to hear, Lee. And here I was worried they were going to throw you into the darkest dungeon they could find." Twilight opened her eyes and looked around the room and saw nothing but horrified/confused looks aimed at her. "Heh heh, oh look is that the time? I should really get going" Twilight quickly rushed out the door and flew off into the skies. Celestia sighed as she saw Twilight leave. "Twilight's always the one to jump to conclusions. You didn't honestly think we would do something so horrible, did you?" she asked. "Uhh, no of course not. Heh heh" "Well, this is where we say goodbye, Lee. Remember to be here early tomorrow and to meet us in the dining hall. We really look forward to working with you" "Goodbye Lee and thank you again helping us out. I and Luna can't wait to see you tomorrow and help you settle in" Celestia then smiled happily. "Yeah, and I look forward to it as well. I'll see you two tomorrow, I guess" Lee shook hooves with Celestia and Luna one more time before they waved goodbye to him and Lee turned to the gates to leave. Lee breathed in the fresh air and looked back at the castle he was about to become a temporary occupant of. "Well, hope I don't disappoint. This'll be... interesting to say the least" Lee flew off into the clouds and back to his house, uncertain of the events that were about to unfold... ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ A/N: Well, it's finally done. My first MLP fanfic and its all about Celestia and Luna of course. Hope everypony enjoys reading it and I hope you let me know what you think of it.
  23. Chapter 2: Fitting In Lee woke up very early the following morning, to the point where he refused to even move from his bed for the first few minutes, but after awhile he decided to slowly but smoothly get up from the bed. Lee stretched out and went to the bathroom to brush his teeth and brush his mane and as he finished, he looked himself in the mirror and simply gazed at his own reflection and observed every detail on his face. He lowered his head down and sighed as he looked away from the mirror. "Well, if it has to be anypony, I can't think of anypony else worse than me" Lee laughed a little as he exited the bathroom. Lee entered the kitchen and was prepared to make himself some breakfast before he realized that Celestia and Luna were probably waiting for him at Canterlot already and he, of course, didn't want to keep the princesses waiting for him. Lee felt his stomach growling as he went to his room to pack some essential items for his stay at the castle. He grabbed a bag from his closet and started packing things like snacks for snacking on, a pillow and blanket to sleep with and a few books in case he got bored. As Lee reached to the top shelf for more items, he made something suddenly fall off the shelf and onto the floor, which luckily didn't make its contents fall out. It was a white box with the words "For Lee" on the front of it, but Lee was confused as to where he got this box from and had realized that he had never seen it before now. Before Lee decided to reach over and open the box, he suddenly heard knocking at his door and quickly placed the box back in the closet and closed it. "Be right there" he said as he went to the door. A familiar sight greeted Lee as he opened the door and saw the same royal guards from yesterday standing at his door. "Oh, it's you guys again! How're you two doing?" "Good morning Mister Lee, we were told by Princess Celestia and Luna to escort you to the castle for the first day of your "assignment". I trust you are all set to depart?" "Yeah, I'm all ready to go! Just let me go and get my bag, alright? Won't be long, promise!" Lee went back inside and retrieved his bag from his bed. Before he left the room, he glanced toward the closet and thought about that white box he found, and slowly took a step towards the closet. But his thoughts were broken by the sound of the guards yelling for him and quickly went back outside and locked his front door. "Alright, I'm good to go! Let's get going" Lee and the guards quickly took off from the ground and made their way toward Canterlot. Lee attempted to make conversation with the guards but they ignored all of his attempts to get their attention. He then decided to give up trying and just flew with them in silence. Sigh... Twilight was a better companion than these two... Lee and the two guards landed next to the main castle gates and made their way inside and back into the long and winding corridors that Lee was still unfamiliar with. Lee continued walking behind the guards until they came to a large door decorated with torches and a sun painted around the top of the door. The guards stood at each side of the door and held their position there. "The princesses await for you within, Mister Lee. If you would leave your bag with us, we'll make sure that it's delivered to your room" Lee did as he said and handed his bag to the guard and bowed to them in respect. "We hope you have a wonderful rest of your day, sir!" One of the guards actually glanced at him and smiled a little, which made Lee surprised and smile in return. "Uhh, yeah. You too! Thanks you guys!" Lee went past the guards and opened the large door. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ Lee entered a very large chamber, which was also very well decorated and made Lee look around at the room in awe. Large drapes emblazoned with a sun and moon hung down the large windows, Multiple chandeliers and torches brightly lit the room, and in front of him was a very long table decorated with candles, bowls of apples and a long cloth that spread out the entire table. Lee continued to be awestruck by the scenery until he heard somepony in the room call his name and realized that Princess Celestia was walking towards him. "Lee, it's so wonderful to see you again! I trust all is well for you on this fine morning?" "Yes, everything is just fine, Princess! Thank you again for having me here. So uhh... when do I start?" "Oh no no no, we're not having you do anything yet, Lee. There's no way were going to have you perform your duties on an empty stomach. Come, follow me!" Celestia pushed him towards the table with her wing and saw Princess Luna setting the table with three sets of plates, napkins and silverware. She turned to Lee and greeted him with a happy smile. "Hello again, Lee! How are you doing this morning?" "Princess Luna! I'm doing just wonderful, thank you." "That's so good to hear, my friend. Come, come sit with us and breakfast will be ready shortly!" Celestia and Luna both took their seats and Lee slowly seated himself next to Celestia, but this only made him nervous as he found himself constantly looking back and forth between her and Luna. He looked and saw multiple royal chef ponies coming into the dining hall and wheeling in a cart full of delicious choices for breakfast. Celestia looked at Lee and noticed how he was eyeballing the food, which only made her laugh a little. "I can assume you're quite hungry, correct?" "Y-yeah, I'm starving! All that food looks... so delicious!" As Lee continued to look over the food, he made very careful he wasn't drooling onto the table before he straightened himself out. The chefs made their way around the table and took the princesses' orders for their breakfast. Celestia had asked for pancakes (extra syrup and butter) and some tea to drink, while Luna had simply asked for some toast with grape jelly on the side and had some orange juice to drink. When the chef reached Lee, he actually had a hard time deciding what he wanted to eat, which made the chef impatient. "Uhh, yeah... I'll have... some scrambled eggs with some juice on the side... I guess" Lee looked at the chef and saw a very baffling look on his face as he walked away in a huff. "Was it something I said? D-did I offend him?" Lee asked. Celestia laughed as she tried to calm Lee's worries. "Don't worry about that, Lee. We'll be sure to speak with him if he decides to... do something drastic! He usually does." The chefs returned with the food and sat each plate next to the corresponding recipient. Lee carefully examined his food to make sure nothing was wrong with it, as he could see the angry chef silently judging him nearby and then decided to taste it, which only made his eyes light up in amazement. "W-wow! This is so delicious! This is incredible!" The chef who was "offended" heard this and actually smiled a bit at the comment as he and the other chefs bowed to the princesses and returned to the kitchens. As Lee and the princesses finished their food and the chefs returned to take the dirty plates away, Lee thanked the princesses for the delicious breakfast. "Oh, it's no trouble at all really! We want you to feel comfortable on your first day, and what better way than such a fantastic meal with the two of us?" Lee laughed a little as Celestia and Luna both smiled happily at him. The two of them then stood up and asked Lee to follow them out into the hall, making their way down the corridors together and Luna conversing with Lee as they walked. "Your room is right down the hall here, Lee. We made sure you had the proper commodities in place and make you feel more at home" Celestia and Luna entered the room and Lee noticed how spacious it was. The bed was fairly large, a large window which actually opened up onto a balcony and a large collection of paintings of the Royal Sisters. "Well, here we are! We hope that the arrangements are fine" "It's perfect! Thank you princesses for offering me this opportunity and I'm happy to be at your service, but aren't you at all worried that I might... mess this up?" "No, absolutely not. We have faith that you will do your best to perform your duties, so you will not hear any grief from us." Luna nodded in agreement to her sister's words, but Lee remained to look worried. "And... what about everypony else? All those fancy dressed up fops? I'm fairly certain they won't be as generous as you two are" Lee started pacing the room nervously and started talking to himself. Celestia and Luna looked towards each other with a worried look for a second, only for them to nod at each other a moment later. Celestia placed a wing around Lee as she brought her face closer to his. "Lee, listen to me. Yes, some of these ponies may try to dissuade you from doing your job, some may even take to insulting your well-being, and with this in mind, it is your duty to take these "insults" and clear them your mind to the best of your abilities. And, should that not be enough to turn them, you need not worry, because I and Luna will be there and we'll know when somepony tries to do you wrong." "Be yourself, Lee. That's all you need remember!" Luna smiled once more, which made Lee lift his head and smile at the two of them. "Yeah, you're right! I'm not going to be brought down by them! Celestia, Luna, I promise that I will not fail you" Lee had a determined look on his face now. "That's wonderful to hear, Lee. Now that you're settled in and had a delicious start to the day, I believe it's time for you to begin your first task." Celestia then looked toward the clock on the wall. "We will be having our morning meeting with the ponies of Ponyville in about thirty minutes. All you need do is make your way there when the time comes, find your way inside and try your best to place yourself closest to the thrones as possible, that way we can keep an eye on you... just in case, you know." "I'll be there, don't worry! I'll see you two there!" Celestia and Luna waved goodbye to him and left the room, leaving Lee by himself finally. Lee walked to the window and opened it to go out onto the balcony, which he could see overlooked a large courtyard that had many ponies roaming around and sitting next to the giant fountain in the middle of the courtyard. Lee walked back inside and started unpacking his bag. He placed the books he brought onto the desk and laid his pillow and blanket on the bed, then decided to start pacing around the room as he tried to figure out what to do next. "Hmm, I'm sure that it wouldn't hurt to get there early" Lee gathered a notepad and a quill from the desk and walked outside into the hallway. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ Lee made his way to the throne room and saw a large group of sharply dressed ponies conversing near a window, which Lee did his best to avoid due to the nature of these kind of ponies and not wanting to start anything with them. As Lee came closer to the group, and trying to move as quickly as possible in the process, one of the ponies saw him go by and called to him. Lee sighed in regret as he faced the ponies. The one with a mustache started examining him and scratched his chin in confusion. "You there, who are you? I don't think we've ever seen you here before" "My name's Lee. I'm here to help the princesses with a task" Lee heard the pony laughing at him, as well as the other ponies around him, and then cleared his throat again. "Well, if the princesses know anything, it's that they know how to have a sense of humor. I can't honestly believe that they'd ever even speak to... well somepony like you." Lee looked at himself as if something was wrong with him, but he immediately became irritated by the pony's comment. "S-somepony like me? What's that supposed to mean?" Before Lee got an answered, the group left the area as they continued laughing at him. Lee decided to just forget about it and continue making his way to the throne room. When he finally reached the door, all he could see was a very long line ponies that stretched all the way down the hall. "Oh geez, look at all these ponies! How am I supposed to get in there with all of them in the way?" Lee knew that the only way was to go through them and he knew that they probably wouldn't take to kindly to him cutting in line. He breathed in and out and quickly made his way through the long line of ponies, apologizing to every pony he cut in front of. And of course, many of them were cursing at him and calling for the guards, but he managed to squeeze through the door and finally enter the room. He looked around the large sea of ponies that occupied every tile on the floor and tried to figure out how to get closest to the thrones, which were at the very back of the room. Lee continued to push through everypony and made his way to the farthest corner of the room, where he could easily see the thrones now. Celestia and Luna were talking with one another, until Luna nudged her sister and pointed toward Lee. Celestia and Luna both waved at him and he happily waved back, but he still had a very nervous look on his face as he looked around at all the other ponies in the room. As he started to write things down on the notepad, he heard somepony talking to him. "Must be nice, huh?" "Excuse me? What are you talking about?" "The princesses. You must be here to apply for the new butler if they have YOU here. What a joke..." The pony walked away laughing as Lee's anger started to grow at the comments. Another pony went past him and wondered why "somepony like you" was here, and Lee started getting more worried. Lee started frantically panicking as everypony around him ridiculed and called him horrible names. "Peasant. Nopony. Jester" These were only a few of the words Lee heard as he looked around at everypony in disbelief. He held his ears as he tried to block the noise, but he could still hear the laughter, the embarrassment, the absolute horror of what was going on around him. Lee fell to the ground as he held his head in agony and screamed into the stone. Celestia and Luna immediately heard this commotion and Celestia quickly made her way to Lee's side, telling everypony around him to step aside at once. Celestia knelt down next to Lee and tried to get his attention. "Lee... Lee, can you hear me? What's happened?" Lee could not answer her, for his whole being started to shake with fear and started breathing heavily trying to hold back the tears welling up in his eyes. Everypony in the room had their eyes on Lee now, and many were whispering to themselves about what happened. "Come, come with me. I'm getting you away from here" Celestia magically lifted Lee onto his feet and helped lead him out of the room, but Lee stayed speechless and continued shaking in fear. Celestia looked toward Luna and she nodded as Celestia left the room with Lee. "Alright, everypony, let's not discuss this matter any longer. Let's postpone this meeting until we say otherwise, shall we?" A/N: Chapter 2 is finally completed! Lee's first day on the job starts with a delicious breakfast and ends in disaster! Will Celestia and Luna be able to set things right? Find out next time.
  24. I've posted the first chapter of my new fanfic, The Meaning of Harmony, on both FF.net and FimFiction. I'll link to the story here, for those interested in reading it. Summary: After Sunset Shimmer gets plagued by a recurring nightmare she returns to Equestria, where she discovers that Twilight has been having similar nightmares. Together with their friends, the ponies are tasked with finding the Forges of Harmony and bring harmony to Equestria once and for all. Shipping Warning: This fic will be SunLight, meaning Sunset x Twilight, in later chapters. If you dislike that pairing or shipping in general this might not be a story for you. If you read the story, please consider leaving a comment/review on it so I can learn how to improve. It's okay if you don't like it, but I'd like to know how to get better and constructive criticism can help me do that. Thanks! On FimFiction: http://www.fimfiction.net/story/245227/the-meaning-of-harmony On FF.net: https://www.fanfiction.net/s/11013060/1/The-Meaning-of-Harmony