I am practically Twilight Sparkle.
35w, 2dHehe, uh, hi... 1 comments · 92 views
58w, 5dHello, hello! 6 comments · 157 views
59w, 1dAbout the password on Twilight's Curse... 6 comments · 82 views
66w, 1dHi, guys, I have some news. 1 comments · 52 views
70w, 1dThe meat of the chapter is here! Also some questions 9 comments · 48 views
70w, 1d1,000 to go! 3 comments · 38 views
70w, 2dChapter in Progress 8 comments · 41 views
72w, 1dA quick question #1 10 comments · 79 views
72w, 1dI'm baaaaaaaack! 2 comments · 50 views
73w, 3dAn Announcement 4 comments · 41 views
Twilight Sparkle was pouring over her books. Her violet irises were tinged red from lack of sleep, and the fact that she had been reading for about sixteen hours straight, and they flickered back and forth, attempting to burn every last scrap of knowledge from the ivory pages into her memory. She yawned, fanning a lavender hoof in front of her mouth. Her mane was quite scraggly, and desperately needed a brush.
But never mind her appearance, and never mind the fact that the time was nearing 3 AM. The devoted librarian had decided to read all her books. All the books, mind you, and that meant pouring over 3,781 tomes.
3,781. The number also known as three thousand, seven hundred, and eighty-one, or quite possibly, 3 thousand, 7 hundred, and eighty-one. It could also be read as 3,000 + 700 + 80 + 1. Still, however you read it, 3,781 was a huge number, even for reader extraordinaire Twilight Sparkle.
Said unicorn lay sprawled in the library’s main room, her forelegs tucked comfortably underneath her chest, and her back legs stretching out behind her. The tangled mane and tail frizzed out in all directions, making her look almost like a parody of Pinkie Pie. Her purple coat also stood on end, but not from fear or cold, but from static electricity. The multicolored hairs were as frizzed as they were because it was winter, and for whatever reason, the library drew static like a certain blue Pegasus drew danger. Living in a tree also meant that there were not very many metal objects for her to discharge that static electricity, and being as focused on the book she was reading as she was, the lavender unicorn had not noticed the absurd amount of electricity in her coat and mane.
Her dragon assistant had long ago left to sleep, rolling his eyes at her unresponsiveness to his insistence that she too needed sleep, and had merely advised her to not “stay up too late.” Saying as it had been 1 AM when he said that, wouldn’t it have been staying up too early? Twilight wasn’t sure, and as much as she would have loved to puzzle it out, she had things to do.
Namely, reading as absurd amount of books.
The reason she was reading 3,781 dusty old tomes and shiny new novels was that ever since Cheerilee had been assigning more book reports, more foals arrived at the library, searching for a tale to appease their teacher, and hopefully find an interesting book for them to read. Now, Twilight knew her library quite well after having lived in it for almost three years, but even she hadn’t read every fantasy novel, every romance, or every science fiction book the library held, and as such, she made it her duty to do so.
The wake-up call had arrived in the form of Sweetie Bell, Rarity’s darling little sister, squeaking in that adorably high-pitched voice of hers that she needed a fantasy/mystery novel for a school report on mixed genres. And worst of all, all the Daring Do books were checked out. Twilight had stood there, looking at the little white unicorn, and desperately trying to think of a fantasy/mystery novel that was appropriate for fillies to read. Fantasy novels usually required a great deal of action and some steamy romance to make them must-reads, and mysteries almost always involved drugs, murder, or… other things, and Twilight simply did not have anything the filly was looking for that was Sweetie Bell-appropriate in the library.
The Books and Branches Library was also the only library in town. Twilight was the only one Sweetie Bell could turn to for her assignment, having already asked all her friends (even Diamond Tiara and Silver Spoon) for a book that met the requirements. She’d also exhausted her allowance to buy a book, and Twilight was way, way over the library budget again, and could not afford to place an order for a book.
Not to mention that said adorable filly had waited until the last possible moment to find a book, and be able to read it all without rushing, in time. Panicked, Twilight had asked the filly if that was the only genre she could choose. Thankfully, the filly had replied no, and Twilight had sent the little unicorn away with a smile, and a book titled “The Marvelous Misadventures of Misty,” a little tale of a young unicorn trapped in space who meets ghosts, and it was a science fiction/paranormal story. Relieved that Cheerilee had decided to let the foals choose sub-genres, Twilight had flopped down and reconsidered the library stock, and the unicorn had decided that she had better know her inventory inside and out.
And you know what that meant to the unicorn?
It meant reading every damn book in the library.
The lavender librarian continued her reading, tired as she may be, when she heard a shy little knocking at the door. Swiveling one ear distractedly towards the sound, Twilight began to pull herself out of the book-induced zone-out.
Oh dear, now who could that possibly be? Ignoring the fact that there were audible “eeps” coming from the other side of the door, there were not many ponies who would even think of being up at this hour, let alone bothering somepony else. Rainbow would certainly be out like a rock. Not like a log, a rock. A whinny-snoring rock, but a rock all the same. The same could be said for Applejack, her chores at the farm requiring her to be up in about two hours, so she would certainly be catching as much sleep as she could. Rarity needed her beauty rest, and nothing short of a fire, a police chase, or a budding romance would keep her awake, and Rarity surely wasn’t in danger. Twilight would have heard it, even all the way across town. Pinkie Pie, despite the rumors, also needed to sleep, plus Twilight had told her no more “Yay, you’re awake at 3 AM, let’s be awke-buddies” parties. And Fluttershy, wait, what time did that Pegasus go to sleep. She was always awake if there was an injured animal, and surely Angel couldn’t let her rest that much.
“Um… Twilight. I, um, need your help, if, you know, that’s not a problem,” Fluttershy’s delicate voice peeped up from the outside.
Striding over the door with a sigh, leaving her statuesque calmness on the floor, Twilight opened a door. “Oh, hey, Fluttershy.” Twilight yawned again, shaking out her coat from all the dust it had accumulated on the floor, unmoving for sixteen hours. Twilight leaned forward to give Fluttershy a hug, since the Pegasus simply looked so frightened, but the Pegasus didn’t get a hug. Instead, the butter-yellow pegaus got an electric shock big enough to put a thundercloud to shame.
“Eeeeeeeee!” Fluttershy squealed, her coat on end like Twilight’s had been, and her mane frizzy.
“Oh, uh, sorry, Fluttershy,” Twilight laughed sheepishly. Whoops. “Are you alright?” the unicorn inquired, veiled amusement in her words. Yeah, she might feel bad for shocking her friend, but you had to admit, Fluttershy did look pretty funny all fuzzy.
“Oh, um, yes, I mean, no, uh…” Fluttershy trailed off, looking at Twilight’s bloodshot eyes and still tangled mane.“W-were you sleeping? I’m sorry!” Fluttershy wailed, throwing herself to the ground and whimpering. “I’m sorry! I saw the light on and thought that you’d be u-up,” Fluttershy sniffled and picked herself off the ground. She began to hastily back out the door, ears folded down to her head. “I’m sorry. I’ll be going now…” Fluttershy lowered her head.
Twilight giggled at her shy friend’s antics. “Fluttershy, please stay. I might look tired, but I’ve been reading this entire time. So, of course I’m tired, but you wouldn’t have come at this hour if it wasn’t something important, right?” Twilight gave the butter yellow Pegasus a smile. “And if it’s that important, I should help. That’s what friends do, after all.”
Fluttershy’s lower lip quivered, and then she leaped forward at the purple unicorn, blubbering her thanks. “Thank you, thank you, thank you! I didn’t know what to do, and I was so worried, and I just thought that if I could come to you, you’d be able to help me with some magic!" Flutttershy took a deep breath after that, the words having come out of her in such a surge that it would have made Pinkie proud. Poking her hooves together timidly, Fluttershy blushed (1).
"Well, we should probably go sit down." Twilight yawned again, and absentmindedly levitated some pillows over to her "nest," as Spike had taken to calling it.
Spike walked out of the kitchen, a mug of warm milk clasped in his claws. He squinted his eyes as he stared at it, looking over the milk suspiciously. They were probably going to need to get more. The milk was fine, but, well, it was probably on its last legs. Spike stopped looking at the milk warily, and turned a corner.
A candle's faint glow alerted him to his surrogate sister, who was still reading. The lavender mage was hunched over by a pile of books and pillows, a blanket over her head. She'd been reading more recently, Spike thought. Almost like she was harking back to their Canterlot days. His sleepy eyes widened, briefly shrugging off the welcoming embrace of a night's rest. "Twilight!" he yelled, the unicorn's head whipping around to glare at him.
"What?" she demanded, more than a little irked at his exclamation.
Spike carefully set his milk down on a table, and then flew towards her as fast as his chubby little legs would take him. "Noooo..." he wailed. "Don't go back! Don't go back!" He grabbed her very confused purple furred face and stared into her eyes. Twilight just looked at him, her eyebrows scrunched together. Spike glared into her eyes again. "Don't go back to the dark side!" He let go of her, striking the floor with a claw. "Nooo... I can't lose you. You were doing so well..." he whined, tears springing to his eyes.
Twilight just looked at him, not amused at all. "Spike, you've been hanging around Pinkie too much." she said, emphasizing Pinkie. "And no, I won't be up all night, before you tell me off. I ordered some new adventure books for the school foals, and I wanted to make sure they were both good quality and appropriate for the foals to read." She levitated the book she was reading and waggled it in front of his face, the glow from her magic illuminating the pages. Spike grabbed the book and read the page, his fanged mouth making a small "o" shape. Twilight snatched the book back. "Ah, ah," she smiled. "Don't go ruining it for yourself," she grinned, flopping her head to one side.
Spike huffed and stalked back to his cooling milk. He took a deep sip, apparently not noticing when it left him a large milk mustache. "Bah, whatever. Go back to reading in your nest." He waved a claw at her, sleepily admonishing her for reading at this hour.
Twilight pouted, it wasn't a nest, it was a book fort.
Settling down on her pillow, Twilight sat up straight. If she so much as slouched, she'd be asleep in no more than a blink of an eye. "So, Fluttershy, what did you need?"
The yellow pegasus blushed, poking her hooves together again. (1) "Um, well, do you remember that special bat I told about at our last tea party?" Fluttershy muttered, her blush intensifying. Twilight nodded in agreement. She did indeed remember that bat. Fluttershy had found a species that didn't seem to be catalogued in any of her books. They'd agreed that someone should ask Zecora or write to the Princesses, but neither had gotten to their respective sources yet. The bat had been pure black with beady little red eyes, and it left black wisps of shadow when it fluttered around, or rather, tried to flutter around, for it had a broken wing. Fluttershy, being the kind pony she was, attempted to nurse it back to health.
"Well, it wouldn't eat anything I offered it. Not nuts, salad, fruit, eggs, or even imitation meat. But, whenever I tried to hoof-feed it, the little dear would open its mouth, like it was going to eat. When it smelled or touched the boot I put on, just in case it was sick, it would close its mouth right away," Fluttershy said, looking at Twilight with concern evident in her eyes. "So, I figured that maybe it didn't like the smell of the other animals or food, and I took the boot off." Flutteershy cringed, hiding behind her long pink bangs, from the glare that Twilight gave her. "I know, I mean, I realize how foolish of me that was now. Anyways," Fluttershy's tone began to waver a bit now, slipping from its already high pitch to an even higher one, "I tried to feed it some scrambled eggs, and it looked really eager when I went to feed it this time." Fluttershy's tone cracked, moisture in her eyes catching the candlelight. "S-so when I brought my hoof to its mouth, it," the storyteller swallowed, "it b-bit me."
At Twilight's confused expression, Fluttershy continued quickly, "I know that because I work with animals, ponies think that a bite or scratch isn't a big deal. But for me, it is. I've never, never ever, not ever been bitten by an animal before."
Twilight blinked from the new information. Whoa. Fluttershy had never been hurt, wait, had her skin broken by one of her animals before. That spoke levels of her meek friend's talent Twilight had never even suspected. Even Angel, with his violent tendencies, had never scratched Fluttershy, not even accidentally? Whoa, Twilight thought again. Whoa.
"B-but, that's not the worst part. It didn't just bite me, it s-s-," Fluttershy took a deep, shuddering breath,"it sucked my blood!" The butter yellow pegasus cringed, and held out a hoof for Twilight to inspect. Sure enough, two little puncture marks with a few smears of blood around them, stained the clean yellow of her friend's hoof.
Wait, so that bat was a...!
"Vampire bat," Fluttershy affirmed Twilight's suspicions with a squeak. "What bit me was a vampire bat. I'm guessing one that got separated from its friends, if the rumors that they travel in groups are true." Fluttershy began shaking. "W-what's worse, was that after it bit me, it d-died." Fluttershy looked down, scuffing the floor of the library with her uninjured hoof. "I couldn't save it!" the yellow pegasus wailed, causing Twilight to jump, and Spike to give a sleepy snore in the room above them. Fluttershy threw her forelegs around Twilight and sobbed, the moisture in her eyes finally getting its chance to escape.
Twilight freed a hoof from her friend's grasp and ran it down FLuttershy's back, trying an awkward attempt at comforting the pegasus. The bat dying might have been a bit sad to Twilight, but she could see that it utterly devastating to her animal-loving friend. "There, there?" Twilight offered, hugging her friend a bit closer until the pegasus scuttled away from her, apologizing profusely for grabbing Twilight. "It's alright," Twilight said, hopefully assauging the meek pony's fear of offending her.
Twilight looked at Fluttershy, having a suspicion that the bat's death wasn't the reason her friend had come to visit this early, or late, depending on your view. There was something missing here...
"But, that's n-not why I'm h-here," Fluttershy hiccuped softly.
Aha, Twilight knew it.
Fluttershy glanced side to side, as if suspecting something was going to suddenly jump out and attack her. "Twilight, do you remember the Legends of the Vampires that Zecora told the foals last Nightmare Night?" Twilight paused, her mind traveling back to that night. She had been dressed as Clover the Clever, and Spike as a Windigo. THe night had been fun, and Zecora had shown up dressed as a vampire, and she told stories and lore about them. One in particular that Twilight had liked, was the legend of Aedayne, the vampire queen. Aeydane had become a vampire by being... bitten by a... bat.
Oh, dear. That could be a problem.
Fluttershy was going to turn into a vampire?
Twilight's eyes grew huge in her head. What?
Fluttershy's eyes copied Twilight's, both of them looking like owls.
Owlowiscious would be proud, Twilight absentmindedly thought.
The lavender mage's mind was desperately trying to remember every little thing Zecora had said. Had the zebra shaman mentioned a cure? Had she? Twilight closed her eyes, entering her world of memories. Cure, cure, cure! Wait, hadn't Zecora said...
"Living without life, and alive without death.
Bloodlusting monsters, stealing your last breath.
A cure, yes, there was found, but..."
But what? A chill went through the room. Twilight, for some reason, simply couldn't remember that part of the memory.
It was a terrible risk to attempt an unfinished spell, especially one that supposedly altered the body, but...
"T-Twilight? T-the reason I came here at this time, was because my vision started improving, and I could hear the hungry animals stomachs rumbling from all the way in the attic of my cottage," Fluttershy's voice took on pleading tone, her eyes and very being imploring her friend to help her. "I don't think I have much time left," came the whisper, ghosting out in the air like a sin revealed.
Twilight looked at her friend. Fluttershy needed help. Really, really, needed help. And ahe need help from her, Twilight Sparkle. What was she supposed to do? Turn the yellow pony away?
True friends didn't abandon each other, especially when a friend needed their help.
Twilight sent a pleading glance up to the heavens. She could feel something telling her not to do what she was about to do, something begging for all it was worth for her not to say the words she was about to do.
"I'll help you, Fluttershy. Right now." Fluttershy's soft crying stopped, and her teal eye turned toward Twilight in shock. (2) Twilight stood up, her tiredness forgotten, she needed a clear mind for this, anything else could mean disaster.
Twilight led Fluttershy to the center of the room, and faced her. Reaching into her magical font, she thought softly,
Living without life, and alive without death.
Banish the sickness, to final rest.
Bring back the health that we once knew,
And close your eyes, lest you pay more than your due.
The words began to weave a spell matrix, volatile and unstable, the magical threads dancing around the room, twisting and coiling like deadly cobras. Twilight furrowed her brow, sending every ounce of concentration into the spell, and the words, which continued...
Living without life, and alive without death.
I banish thee, monster, to eternal rest.
Live not anymore, in spirit, or more.
The purple unicorn's eyes opened, no longer violet, but pure white, the magic channeling to her horn blinding her as she drew upon every smidge of power in her body. A light show flickered in the room, the threads almost reaching Fluttershy, the pegasus' eyes closed in fear, but the yellow pony still stood tall, wings flared out with pride.
A thread touched Fluttershy, sinking into her chest until it turned from white, to gray, and then to black. The other threads began to join the dark one, becoming a thick pillar of shadow. The pillar receded from Fluttershy to rejoin its master, leaving the pegasus to crumple to the floor with a soft squeal. The bar of dark began to swirl around Twilight's head, creating a vortex of shadow, and slowly lowering itself to cover the mage. The blackness splashed down on Twilight. coating her barrel, legs, tail, and most of all, her head. It inched over her, soaking into her skin, and rapidly disappearing. It slid down her neck in viscous black streaks, painting the emerging purple black again. A thin pulse of light emerged from the unicorn, and then faded.
Twilight, exhausted, with only enough magic to keep her alive, fell to the ground, bowing in defeat to the dark.