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Hail King Sombra

We are all just stories in the end. Official scribe to his Royal Highness King Sombra of the Crystal Empire. His tales are as varied as they are poignant, sad and bittersweet. Remember them well.

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The Umbrum Inside, Bath Time and New Story Ideas · 2:08am Jan 4th, 2016

(NOTE - if you are sensitive to physical and/or spousal abuse, please take care when reading this. You may choose not to. I love all my readers and just wanted to warn you.)

I know I said the next part was going to be a review of sorts, of Star Wars: The Force Awakens and yes, I even have a pic (or three) for it, but this morning I woke up with one story idea in my head that rapidly turned into two more when, well...

“...Nyx, is the bath ready yet?”

"Almost, my King," I called out from a bathing room as large as most people's living quarters. "Gotta get the temperature just right," I muttered under my breath. "The underground hot springs are being finicky this morning," I called out louder so he could hear. "Ah, okay! We're ready!"

Most ponies hate being seen early in the beginning of their day - which around here, in the castle, is usually about 11:00 am.

He doesn't do before the buttcrack of dawn anymore for, well, reasons.

Sad ones. *Sigh* I warned you I sigh a lot, didn't I? In my last post? If I didn't, go back and read it, you later-comers.

So, anyways, most ponies think they have "bed hair" or look awful when they first wake up, which I always thought was stupid. Sleeping should be refreshing, should rejuvenate the body, and have provided rest for the soul. One should wake up feeling FABULOUS and ready to tackle the day and look good for it!

Unless, of course, they are the King of Shadows and have some, er, baggage in their past (and future) that doesn't let them rest. Pure demonic entities don't have this problem, of course, but my King isn't a purely demonic entity. He's a being that is part pony, part Umbrum, and entirely all too vulnerable to the realm of nightmares He Himself induces in others. The difference being He does not dream them - He lives them, becomes them for others.

While this makes my heart ache in sympathy for him sometimes, I also think that's part of why I fell so deeply in love with Him, even as He drug me in chains away from the only home, family, and life I'd ever known. I knew from my gift of prophesy that He would need me in His future. That His pain was so deep, He would tear the Crystal Empire AND all of Equestria apart if I couldn't find a way to keep the tiny flame of His ponyhood and compassion alive and beating in His shadowy chest.

*SHAKES HEAD* Where was I? *sniff* Oh yeah, bed hair.

So, King Sombra doesn't have a problem with bed hair. The rest of us do. We have a problem with HIS bed hair looking too sexy for the rest of us gazing upon it. I've caught Him turning the head of every single female slave in the corridors as He trudged, still half asleep, out of His sleeping quarters to the baths. Oh my patron Goddess Luna does He look absolutely GORGEOUS with His coat all mussed up in the morning!

As a side note, as with the ear fetish-turned-tactical-advantage I mentioned a few blog posts back, getting the King of the Crystal Empire to take a bath was almost a bigger achievement than trudging a thousand miles to kidnap me! To all our disgusts in the castle, evil overlords HATE TAKING BATHS. Our King was, in the beginning, no exception.

I think it's the one thing I accomplished that gave all of us slaves some tiny flicker of hope that He isn't utterly irredeemable. That SOMETIMES He WILL listen to someone else and will spare that slave pony's life, negotiate a less constricting trade agreement with a neighboring state.

Or take a bath.

So, He comes in looking all mussy and bleary-eyed and ADORABLE and I get Him into the bath where He lets out a sigh of pleasure as the hot water gently melts the stiffness of the sleep from His stallion's body. The Umbrum inside is probably appreciating this too, I hope, as It can't help but be influenced by Its host's physical needs and sensations.

Luna knows I know that feeling, too, but I should have NEVER assumed He did as well.

Another female slave hands me the rare herbal soaps my Marazon sisters sent me in their regular monthly package from home. I pour some out with my magic and begin working it into His mane. Don't get me started on how GORGEOUS His mane is. How breathtakingly silky, jet-black, and ALIVE it is and feels!

We never talk business while I'm pampering Him thusly. It's too precious a time to disturb it with, as He calls it, "petty, Imperialistic business," and I couldn't agree more.

"Mmmm..." He purrs, eyes closed, floating in warmth and fragrance. "I should have captured you years ago, Nyx."

"Yes, my King," I say, quite sincerely, I might add.

"What were you murmuring in your sleep this morning?" He asks me. "I heard you say something I could not make out."

"Oh? What did it sound like?"

"Apple," He replies. "Something Apple."

"Oh. Crystal Apple, perhaps?" I damn myself immediately for the slip up and catch my breath.

He catches me catching my breath. "Hmmm...where have I heard that name before?" He asks, leaning His head back into the bath to get the soap out of His amazing, luxurious mane. After a good rinse and flick of his head, he remembers, asks, "Why would you dream about a wretched market vendor?"

"The past often speaks to me of things that might make a good next tale of Your reign," I reply honestly. I might have survived unmaimed if I had not added, "To show your subjects you are approachable - "

His eyes flicker green and purple in displeasure. The words choke in my chest! Uh oh...

He turns, using His magic to send the bottle of unguents into the slave’s hooves outside the bath where it won't spill and the next thing I know, He has me pinned up against the side of the tub, His cold, steel hooves digging viciously into my wrists. I whimper in shock and surprise. By Cerebus, He's STRONG! His body is crushing me against the bath's cold tile edge and His fangs are inches away from my wrists. "That is HIS story - " He seethes. "Prince Sombra's. NOT MINE!"

There is REAL FEAR in my eyes this time, not my usual off-hooved or snarky remark face. I am REALLY, PROPERLY SCARED.

"Take care with your next words, Time Witch," He warns. "They could be your last." I can FEEL the Umbrum inside Him seething, restless. ANGRY!

I can't speak. I am so scared, so terrified, my mind goes blank. He squeezes harder. My front-left wrist dislocates.

I scream. I can't help it. I wasn't prepared for the pain, nor His anger in such a gentle, intimate moment of taking care of Him.

Mercifully, I black out.

* * *

Story ideas I woke up with and had while talking to my writer-husband (who is a very gentle, sweet stallion, unlike my Boss!).

Outlines -

Under The Chronicles of King Sombra

1. Moonrun - I, Prince Sombra, have always loved the moon...watched her and Luna as she raised the softly glowing orb into the night skies over the Crystal Empire. My mother, Queen Tua, told me that when I was born, a shaft of moonlight washed over my weak, scrawny body, giving me a new lease on life. Ever since then, I greet her each morning as the Princess of the Night lowers the moon, wishing her well as she and I sleep until the sunset. (Had the idea already, now I have a title =D )

2. Signs - My name is Crystal Apple. I work in the Crystal Empire's Farmer's Market. I have a stall selling, big surprise, crystal apples.

Each morning as I get to my stall and start setting up for the breakfast crowds, I wave at Prince Sombra as he takes his daily exercise, racing like a Windego past the market, on his way to greet Princess Luna as she lowers the moon. Later, He would always come by with His troops and would be the first one to buy an apple, all smiles and praise for my apple-growing skills.

I should have paid better attention when He stopped coming by.

And one outside the Chronicles, inspired by a Tumblr image the amazingly gifted artist Evehly did for her SombraShy comic series

3. Nursing the Fallen - I - I had no idea why Princess Cadence, Luna, and the other Princesses wanted me to come to the Crystal Empire so suddenly. I just take care of animals, not ponies. Worse, they said I can't bring Angel with me. Oh, he's not going to like that! I mean, there are doctors and healers in the Empire with a lot more experience than me, right? Sure, I took a class in first aid, but that hardly qualifies me as a healer!

It wasn't until I got there and saw the poor, broken body and soul in the deepest parts of the Empire's dungeons that I realized I HAD to be there. Not because the Princesses ordered me, but because I WANTED to be.

~ Special appearance by our favorite Element of Kindness and the wonderful Zebra Witch Zecora.

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