69w, 2hHuman in Equestria
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Lyra sighed as she looked around her study. The room was rather small affair, the walls were a brown color with a white trim at the base. A fireplace dominated the wall opposite her desk, a large mirror above the mantle taking up a large part of the wall. The other walls were dominated by the many artifacts she had collected or been given in her ten year employment by Canterlot University. The school was actually called, ‘Celestia’s Institute for Gifted Ponies’, but most simply called it ‘Canterlot University’. It was the most prestigious learning institution in the whole of Equestria, she was currently working as an archeologist and linguist for the school but she had her eyes dead-set on teaching.
She was a unicorn mare, with a mint green coat and a two tone green/white main. Her mark was an odd one for one in her profession, a golden lyre, but Equestria had done away with the cultural ‘bound by mark’ mentality. Most ponies still took jobs pertaining to their mark, but it was now not looked down upon if one chose not too. For the most part anyway, she still got the occasional upturned nose. She loved playing the lyre, as a pastime, she couldn't see herself doing it as a living. Now this... this was her passion, she loved history, she loved to see ponies learn.
The reason she was so exacerbated was that another pony by the name ‘Feather Duster’ would simply not stop attempting to contact her. He was the last director of Anthropology for Canterlot U, and he had been ostracized around a month ago for his newfound beliefs. The asshat had to have sent her over fifty letters in the last month alone, asking her to translate something. Always prattling on about having something that would, “Change life as we know it!”. He had never been the same after he had attended a dig at the city of 'Corinth', the oldest found pony city dated to be nearly ten thousand years old. Something about a tablet going on about a ‘great dying’ unleashed by ‘angry gods.’ He began saying that we were once something much more than what we were now.
‘Humph… fool.’ She thought to herself, ‘That line of thinking cost him not only his job, but nearly everything, whole world thinks he’s a crackpot. All over a gut feeling.’
They had been good friends, even went to the same school, but ever since his… breakdown; she had avoided him. Generally in the scientific community, if you associate with a madpony, you were one too. She felt sorry for the stallion, she really did, but she did not want to lose her job just for old time’s sake. Alas he was very… adamant in his regard, and would not take ‘No’ for an answer.
Hesitantly, she had agreed to help. If only to stop his incessant requests as he would not be swayed otherwise. She had even threatened to sue for harassment, not that it did anything good.
She had just moved to take a seat at her desk when she heard a retort from her door.
‘That has to be him.’ She thought with a sigh.
“Come in.” She called as she found a blank piece of paper on her desk decidedly interesting.
She looked over the paper as the door opened, her suspicions confirmed as Duster walked in.
He looked just like she remembered him, a unicorn like herself with a off-brown coat with a like colored wild mane. His mark was a stone slab with a pony on it, but it was as of now covered by his saddlebags.
“Lyra,” He started, closing the door, “I can’t thank you enough for this. You were the only one who I could turn to that I trusted and possessed the skills I need.”
She gestured for him to sit in the chair across the desk, “I hope you understand what I'm risking even seeing you. This is a one time deal, understand? I’m sorry, but I can’t risk my job. This is my life's work we're talking about, I won't just toss it away chasing dreams.”
“Of course of course.” He said dismissively, to which Lyra huffed. He pulled something out of his bags and lightly placed it on her desk.
Lyra looked at the ball of cloth on her desk, “This is what you’ve been pestering me about?”
He nodded, “Have a look; I've done what I could to restore it to readable condition. I just needed somepony who could do it.”
“Not one of your ponies could?” She asked.
“It’s not that they couldn’t, just did not trust them as much as you.” He said back.
“Flattery won’t get you anything else out of me Duster.” She said as she unwrapped whatever he had brought her.
“Flattery, maybe not, but this…” He trailed off.
She stopped and glared at him, his response was to gesture back to the half unwrapped tablet.
She looked at the thing that had turned her friend into a laughingstock. It was a small thing; the top part looked like it had broken off, and only couple of inches in height and breadth. It looked genuine; it looked aged in a way similar to other artifacts of Corinth, so she could not dispute him of it being a fake. What caught her was that it was absolutely covered in script, no spot was unoccupied by the curvy writing of the ponies that inhabited Corinth. The writing was… sloppy, it looked hastily written.
It may be sloppy, but it was not unreadable to her.
“So… Can you read it?” Duster asked.
She held up a hoof, “This takes time… Now please, be quiet.”
Unseen by her, Duster had a grin on his face; he knew she was enthralled by the tablet.
"The script looks more... advanced, than it should be. The word usage and concepts are at least a thousand years ahead of what they should be. You dated this?” Lyra asked.
Duster smiled, “It’s at least five to seven hundred years older than the city itself.” He said smugly.
“Amazing...” She said.
“So... What does it say?” Duster asked.
“Oh... yes... Ahem.” She started. “The beginning is cut off, but this is what it says.”
‘...skyfire brought it down upon us all.
The whole of what could be seen was death.
How smitten were the plains, the ichor of death did rain upon them.
How smitten the cities, in whose streets our dead we piled.
How smitten the winds, whose breath once gave life, now death comes on it’s heels.
How smitten the seas, who once birthed the life of all, now the cradle of dead.
How smitten were we, who ruled all, now only death.
Three and ten revolutions, all was death.
Then from the dark, they came, the progenitors of the great dying.
They preached peace, they preached salvation.
Do not listen, cried us.
Pleaded with great leaders did we.
They are interlopers.
They caused the death.
Their tongues carried not but lies, deceit.
Blood-for-blood, the cry of a nation, turned the cry of all.
Then blood was had.
Their great home, did we smite from the sky.
Alas, then we did hear.
The new gods, the new masters, did call.
Then blood was had.'