As the black pony walked silently into uncharted area, a violet mist – sparkling like the stars themselves – moves swiftly from the side of the house to a nearby tree. Then it floats from its base to the darkest section above.
…Now's the point where I realize there was one important question I should have asked Fauna, and it may as well meant the difference between life…and death.
I forgot to ask for directions! I can feel the tears worthy of a complete moron ready burst out. I can blame this on…me. There is no one else to blame but me.
The negative thoughts kept coming nonstop, but…there is something that happened to slip in. Why didn't Fauna tell me where to go? That valid questions helped me pull out of my negative state, Fauna knew I have no idea where this place is, much less how to get out. So why didn't she tell me where to go?
I don't know them completely, but…I can't deny this, I do trust them. This isn't a matter of trust, but of why. …That just now, I actually sounded cool.
I continued on with these new thoughts in mind. Thoughts that relate to Fauna and why she didn't give me directions, nothing else.
A distant crackling sound makes my legs stop. W-What was that? It was a sound I heard before, but I couldn't put my…hoof on it (might as well practice with this new language). That was…fire crackers? Something like that, but… The sound was too similar to fire crackers …here, in a forest, where-
I had no chance to finish. A white sphere of light appears on the very distant. It becomes brighter in the blink of an eye as the crackling sound of thunder-THUNDER?! My eyes widened as the thunder became more recognizable, and its target is me.
I couldn't dodge it; I couldn't even move. I am scared, but I am not paralyzed from it. It's…too late for me to save myself.
I closed my eyes and braced myself for a torrent of pain. Then it came, the roaring sound of thunder enclosing around my ears.
…Then nothing, the typical silence before the storm. Am I…dead? I opened my eyes, wary of what I might see, but after I did, I am worried of what I am not seeing.
The sight of trees with its never-changing background is a relieving view, but-A white sphere of light appears in the horizon. My heart skipped a beat as my body shivered, T-That's-
It turned brighter, then I quickly tilted my head to the side as far as it would go. The crackling sound of thunder became obscured by the explosion as millions of volts passed within earshot.
Then it followed; a hollowed buzzing sound as my body felt a hollowed coldness. I could still feel how my chest moves up and down. And although my vision unfocused, I was at least able to straighten my head back. But my body began wobbling immediately.
I managed to make my body firm so it would stop moving, but just then, I felt a strange...separation from it. My body is there and it moves where I want, but it felt more like someone was pulling it with strings - like if I was some kind of puppet.
My head turns. Behind me stands a tree with an irregular hole burned through it; its giant enough for me to walk through, but the unscathed wood looks ready to split apart from the weight its now carrying.
That unbearable ringing nearly dies out, slowly replaced by a friendlier sound. *Thump* W-Whaaaat? My mind drew a lazy tone as my head turned back, I…I… *Thump* I…I was… *Thump*
My head shot upright, I almost died! I regained my senses as well as my vision, but that brought something else. A heavy throbbing manifested on the side of my head, forcing me to press a hoof on it. I also had to close my eyes for the gentle light from the flowers became too intense.
*Pant* W-Why did my eyes- I tried taking a peek, and I was able to see the green grass perfectly well. But as I raised my eyelids higher, the flower's white light stung my eyes until they closed. Why are they sensitive? It's my ears that are supposed to be like that!
As the headache subsided, I dared to take another peek. Unlike my previous attempt, the light is now soft on my eyes. I moved my hoof down, then searched left and right for that monster-in-disguise.
"Has my presence been reduced to that of this filthy forest?" My blood ran cold, hearing her harsh words paralyzed me for a moment, and when I finally gathered the courage to look at her in the eye, – which is something I should avoid doing – all sound died. My heartbeat, the breeze and my breathing, all those were gone in an instance. Her scowl slowly turned into a smirk, "This shall clear the problem."
She aimed her horn at the sky, and white lightning sparked around it.
I took a small guess at what she was doing, but when I looked up, I hadn't imagined she could take it to that scale.
The once covered skies turned pitch black with lightning clashing with one another as if for dominance. The sky flashed white, and I made the most logical decision anyone in my position would have done. Duck my head, cover my eyes and pray.
The earth shook violently as the only audible sound came to my ears: multiple trees tearing into pieces as a shower of lightning stormed my surroundings.
Only now I realize how dumb I was, Facing off against that nightmare?! I must have been delusional! But the truth is, I thought that maybe that this whole situation could have been avoided. That my godlike bad luck turned for the better, at least for a few hours.
A tree on top of me split in half. As to how I heard that, it was very, but very close. It is followed with the incessant explosion from lightning and the occasional sound of wood clashing against wood, and dirt bursting from its inert state.
It stopped, and once again, I am left in a dark silence. Then the unmistakable sound of hell's fire with its scorching temperature reached me, and as I opened my eyes, I could hear the last bits of my sanity crumbling down.
A hue of red has taken over the entire field; multiple trees have fallen and become a large supply for the fire towering under half their original height. The worst part is that a clear path between me and that monster exist. A real grassy path remained after her display of Armageddon.
Desperately seeking for an exit, it is a stroke of luck there is a clear path behind me into the remaining forest.
*Cough* I covered my snout but was too late. *Coughcoughcoughcoughcoughcough*
"Quite the troublemaker you turned out to be." With a hoof still over my nose, I turned my head to face her, but was reminded of the fear as I met her piercing gaze. "Will you finally stop cowering and fight me," and with a bemused look she adds, "or are you going to seek out a new house to hide in?"
I froze in place, staring forward with round eyes while in the back of my head I could hear her mocking laugh, Run? Run where? She is going to find me again. This is never going to stop, but why me? Why is my life like this?
I am fed up with everything, tired how things never turn my way, not even once. Why do I have to go through this? I- A soothing warmth caresses my forehead. The tension that gathered inside my body gradually decreased, and I slowly released some air I didn't know was holding.
My hoof moves on its own to a spot on my head. Once it got there, a gentle warmth extended to my entire foreleg, then rekindling life to my silent body. *Thump* *Thump* I could also hear my breathing again; a simple sound I will never take for granted again.
I took my gaze off the obvious death threat, and stared at the long curly petals on the corner of my vision. I feel a unique serenity that could even dispel the dark and fiery ambient that is crushing me. …Fauna, did you know something like this was going to happen?
"W-What is this?" My eyes went back to Nightmare Moon; who's posture faltered as she took a step back. A scowl is now over her face, but in her eyes which were filled with an unbreakable confidence and icy glare, reveals a hind of worry. "When did you come in possession of…of that?!" That last part carried a feint growl that I may have imagined, but seeing her bare her fangs like an animal about to jump on its prey, I am not so sure anymore.
"You mean this flower?" I moved my hoof back down, and barely notice the smoke surrounding the field in its dark walls. Huh, I am not coughing anymore. Leaving that aside, I focused on the pegasus/unicorn (pegasus have wings, unicorns have horns, and normal ponies don't have any of that), "I got this from Fauna…" I became bold to say what I wanted to, "my…friend."
Her eye and wing twitched with the last word, "That mare…hooved you that…that thing?"
I answered with a nod, despite the circumstance I am in.
Fire spontaneously grew larger as it narrowed the small path between us, yet, I am not scared, but I don't feel safe either. It's a rare mixture of the two; almost an…empty feeling.
"Nothing's changed!" The dark pony with purple-blue armor stomped forward, anger visible on her features, "You won't roam freely so long as I am here! Or did you honestly believe a miracle would come to save you?"
That's…not far from what I hoped, but "But…" but I… "I have to…" I want to see him again "I need to get out of here…" so I can't "I can't back down!" I stomped my hoof forward, forgetting about the fire surrounding me and the hollow-like fear she made me feel.
The pony's eyes widened before she retracted her step; can't blame her, I was surprised as well, but for some reason, this…new energy inside me, is keeping me from sinking back into that depressed state. Almost like-
"ENOUGH!" She pulled me out of my thoughts, and I see her spreading some distance between her legs. Her eyes glaring as she bowed her head so her horn aims at me, but no lightning or any visible magic surrounds it.
I did the same with my legs. Then bowed my head and readied myself.
You know brother, you are right. I am an idiot. The King of Idiots even. My hoof instinctively scraped the ground as if trying to tear it off completely. But what else do I do? Running away is pointless. The wood inside the fire cracked, reminding me of the other present hazard, If I say I give up, what happens to me then? She nearly killed me with just being close. I don't want to know what she do to me if she did capture me. Put me to work on some mine? Torture me to kill her boredom? Or hypnotize me to make me her jester or a dispensable soldier…I am thinking more of the former.
Whether already under or barely being eaten by the fire, another, but more resounding, sound of wood cracking makes my ears twitch. And by chance, we both sprint with all our might.
I literally take the crown for thinking this, but brother – I closed my eyes, prepared for what's coming – if you can actually hear this, I want you to know I tried my best. I could hear her steps becoming louder with every grass she crushed, I don't regret doing it. Because…Because at least I tried my best this time! A single hot tear rolled down my cheek, and my lips quivered into a smile, At least…I wasn't a coward in the end.
The two ponies collide with one another, but instead of the predictable scenario to occur, the black pony keeps running through a dark haze where Nightmare Moon stood.
He comes out running from the other side, and opens his eyes with a confused look on them. I-I am alive!?
He was about to turn his head when, inattentive of his surroundings, trips with a small but sturdy rock.
What followed was an unenjoyable experience for the human.
WHYYYYYYYYYY – this kept going as my insides moved up and down countless times. Seeing people roll uncontrollably in TV is funny, but experiencing it is…painfully dizzy. The end is unforgettable as I come to a stop with a chin-to-ground meet up. O-Ooooouch, I got a feeling I am going to use that word at least once a day.
I tried opening my eyes, but my mouth opened instead, letting out a long, low groan.
I don't know…and right now I don't care what happened, but if whatever that thing was is gone, then…I can sleep…for a few days. My body was the first to give in to the comfort of the ground, and as my mind followed, a red-orange light destroyed what could have been a peaceful nap.
I lazily moved a hoof in front of my eyelids, further blocking the sun's warm rays-Warm? …Warm… It's hard to explain, but in the back of my mind, there's something I should be remembering. …FIRE!
I got on all fours and turned around in a heartbeat. What I see, makes my jaw hang open.
I managed to get out of Lostshine Forest; the same forest with celeste colored trees that seemed to reach the skies. The very same in which fire threatened to burn everything minutes ago, but in its place, stood a death forest.
Dull, beaten down brown trees remain over the barren soil, and as a light breeze passes by, the thin leafless branches on top quiver as if ready to snap loose.
Okay…what did just happen here? Better yet, what Happened to the forest I was in!? And then it hit me, Wait, that's the same question. I shook my head, focusing on the giant mystery in my hooves.
I noticed something a little to the left where I exited, A…sign? I walked closer to the only source of information, a worn out wooden plank nailed to a tree.
Its state is bad, but at least the words are readable –for the most part, "For…bidden…entry to…Su…Sunshine Forest." At least the last two words were-Huh? I looked over the words again, repeating them over and over to prove myself I haven't gone crazy.
What did…that book say. And as if by second nature, my mind recites them perfectly.
After I faced the nightmare of Sunshine Forest, I knew what to do next.
It's scary that I can remember everything written in a book, but not my name or anyone I knew. The sole thought made me tremble until a new thought came to mind. My eyes widen, *Gasp* "Fauna and Pebbles."
Tired muscles or not, I dashed around the tree and took the linear path from where I came. Expecting my surroundings to repeat themselves, seeing the small image of a house so soon is…scary. Many inexplicable things transpired in a day, adding another one is going to make me grow a gray hair.
I soon had to skid to a halt, and in front of me, a simple, wooden house that somepony called home. "T-This…this is it." There are plenty of changes done to it: holes on the roof, notable cracks on the front side, the wood itself looks tarnished, giving the place an eerie vibe.
*Gulp* I took a few steps, then hardly touched the door handle with my hoof. The door fell to the other side, uplifting dust that thankfully flew to the sides.
I am left wide-eyed to see the house's conditions worse than I imagined, That's…a bad start.
While trying to keep my emotions in check, I took two steps inside, and instantly regret doing so. The dark lighting is…foreboding; the creaky sound as I stepped on the fallen door made a chill creep on me from the surprise.
I took one more step, and a small light – probably from outside – illuminated the area for me to see familiar objects. On my left, at the corner of the house, is a bed; needless to say, it looks…decomposed. Most of the pillow's fabric is now a dark moss; the bedding is…completely covered in dust. I can't tell if it's there or not anymore.
On the far end, I see the chimney on the left corner with a black pot on the base – dirty, but not in such a deplorable state like the bed. As for the table, it's still there, but...it doesn't look better than the house.
What…happened here? This is all too much for anybody or anypony or whatever! Getting transported into a magical world filled with magical ponies sounds like a fun adventure, but what I went through…was HELL!
My legs began moving on their own, taking me around the right corner of the door to the pictures that are supposed to be there. It's not like I tried to resist. In fact, I wanted to see something.
Once I got there, I stood in front of broken framed photographs. It took a few seconds, but I found the one I was looking for.
It is titled to the side, but I can clearly see two lookalike ponies standing next to each other. A kind smile on both their faces as their long hair is combed graciously to the side.
I kept staring, too scared to move and too shocked to think. I took a deep breath, then exhaled slowly. I took small steps to the side, making my way closer to the door, Maybe some fresh air can help clear my mind.
As I proceeded to make a 'calm' escape, I stepped on something. An out of place softness grabbed my attention. I looked down to see the object, but all I could tell it's a fabric of some kind. I lowered my head to take a better look, but just as I could see a shape, it fell.
The white flower Fauna gave me fell on the Pebble' bright-blue celeste scarf.
*CRE-CREA-CREEEEEEEAK* I stumbled backwards, panting as my heart raced faster, "T-T-That is-that…that-" Get a hold of yourself! It's just a flower! I tried to reassure myself on a lie, but it doesn't take a genius to see this is beyond unexplainable. But…
I took a step forward, that flower…saved me. I closed the distance as I thought of more comforting words, If it wasn't for that flower, I…I would have lost it. I looked down at it with curiosity, and…managed to pick it up…with my hoof.
With a flower in hoof, I looked down at the second item – a scarf. Should I? It's not like anybody can tell me no. Before deciding to either leave it or take it with me, I placed the flower inside my saddlebag – opposite to where the book is of course, wouldn't want it to get squashed. Well, if I were to leave it, theeeeen…no one else would use it… Why am I thinking about this? Simple logic decides it.
I picked it up, and even though it's been in a house that's had better days, it's spotless. I took a good look at it, back and front, but only found bits of dust. A flower that saved my life, and a scarf that's almost clean. I am guessing this is going to be the definition of normal around here.
Without much else, I wrapped the scarf around my neck. I can now see it was made for someone like Pebble's height, since it only covers half my neck, but still, it's nice to have something from…a friend. Never really got a chance to ask…it would have been dumb to ask that anyway.
The creaky sounds from the floor didn't affect as I took my leave and headed from where I came. A question did, however, What do I do now? That pony – Nightmare Moon – is gone…I shouldn't think of it too hard. I am alone in this world of ponies, but who says it's only ponies, and who says I am alone? Wait…I am the only one saying this is a world of only ponies, but anyone looking at me can see I am alone… *Mental Slap* Which actually made my head turn to the side, I am being overdramatic here.
I hung my head low, getting mournful by my stupidity, Seriously though, what do I do now?
A yellow, bright light from above answered my prayers. I stopped, then moved my head up to gaze at the horizon. What I saw, even if ordinary for anyone who lives here, is…just wow.
I kept staring at a town that has a western look to it – like if stripped out from one of the history books I read!
I am far from it, a good one to two hour walk probably. But it's so perfectly placed inside the barren environment! And the houses don't look that big either! Plus, it is the only thing I see – aside from the death forest behind me. So simple logic wins again!
…That book was right. I turned my head to the left, looking at the saddlebag on my side, If I only knew where that book came from, I bet I could find a way back home. *Sigh* No point in 'if' scenarios. I shifted my gaze to the town on the distance, I do know what I need to do, but…what do I do afterwards?
I narrowed my gaze, held my head up high and took the first step into the unknown. Facing it with an unfamiliar determination.
After every three chapters or so, I will take a two month recess from this story to go to my other one. And the only reason I did six chapters in this one, was because I wasn't counting on the third chapter to turn mighty long. I wasn't...
In all technical, it might not be two months. Considering that I don't have to do major thinking like in this one, because in future chapters I will have to plan ahead. Big time too.
So this is something to keep in mind. Until next time, Bye Bye!