• Published 20th Nov 2013
  • 2,205 Views, 33 Comments

FoE: Snippet Story - Windrunner



Set at various points in the Fallout: Equestria universe. Each chapter is intended to be a unique story unto itself. So many references, both ludicrously obscure and blatantly obvious. Even the title. No, not that. You will never figure them all out.

  • ...
16
 33
 2,205

PreviousChapters Next
Coats of Many Colors

.

Books are written for a great variety of reasons. Some are written as a record of history. Some to rewrite it. It is all in the eyes of those beholding the words contained within. It is said history is written by the victors, but what is written when no one is victorious? In post-war Equestria, exactly nothing. The very existence of books is a rare thing. Rarer still, those who would seek them. Very few ponies remain who know the knowledge they may contain is sometimes more valuable than all the caps in the wastes. Especially now that knowledge truly is power. What you know may be the difference between the fine divide between life and death, and remaining on the side of the living.

In a time when everypony struggles just to survive only might makes right. Before the war some unicorns may have felt themselves above the common crowd. Now their lives meant just as little as another. Most unicorns kept at least a few books. In a dim forgotten corner of an ancient book depository one particular book lay, the unicorn who owned it never knowing how valuable it would one day become. She knew only that the subjects it touched on were greatly detailed. Something which must have taken an entire lifetime to write. When she lived she was not a well-to-do unicorn. Her life was meager and bereft.

A sad little pony who toiled her life away trying to ensure future generations would have the knowledge their ancestors possessed. Her sadness only tempered by the stories she would read, her one escape from her goal. To a point only dragons were thought to know with their great hoards, she was obsessed. For years she obtained and hid all manner of books. Anything she deemed those to follow may need. The slightest shred of knowledge, the most obscure spell. Anything that might someday be needed she filed away from sight. She began this quest to safeguard knowledge almost before the ministries came into being. Back when it was not considered so dangerous to know certain things.

She was thought to be eccentric, and certainly questioned when she went looking for donations to help build the depository. Why build it out there? She chose a spot where she imagined it might stand the test of time. She found it difficult to raise funds or to get workers to come this far out, but dealing with these things were necessary pains. Her explanations behind its location were quite clever. Nopony would suspect the true intent. No mere library once stood here. Every bit, every minute of her spare time was spent here. When workers were scarce she would do anything she could alone.

Long days of heavy labor made her look withered far beyond her age, her once bright blue coat tattered and unkempt. Her cutie mark of a glimmering gilded scroll frazzled. Her friends concerns over her appearance were carefully brushed aside with well-reasoned explanations. Not able to find fault with her logic they could only watch in sadness as this pony seemed to teeter on the edge of life before them. She knew, and was happy knowing her friends cared so much for her. They would leave her before the end, as would what was left of her family. She knew this too. It was okay. They would leave because they must. It was better that way.

She did not want them to see her decline any further or involve them in something which could ruin their lives. The better part of a decade passed in this fashion, until at last the depository was fully constructed and very full of books. Slightly uncommon books. Books that would otherwise arouse no suspicion. Her last bit gone, the work finally completed. It opened to a surprising amount of fanfare and many more visited the place than she ever expected. At last able to rest, her health recovered somewhat. Over the next ten years it played its public role as a library, garnering a reputation for carrying material not often found outside of Canterlot itself. This alone drew visitors who did not wish to travel so far as the capital.

During that time she continued to gather and hide away any book of note she could get her hooves on. With the ministries in place this was becoming more difficult to do without being caught. Places to hide these books were at a premium as well, but built into the grand library using very clever means. Small secret rooms and side pockets not in the construction plans were added subtly. To an untrained eye it was no different from the plans. What pony would ever expect a public library to hold any secrets? She played her role well, none would ever suspect the quiet shady deals she would seek out under cover of acquiring material for the depository.

It was a perfect front, flawless and far enough away from anywhere important to warrant a second look. Though her physical health improved, the stress exacted its price. She could never save all the knowledge in the world no matter how many books she obtained. Doing without many of the comforts of life she built the grand depository in hope for the future. The building did indeed hold up fairly well over the years, but the wastes are harsh on everything. The crumbling ancient walls and timber could barely hold up what was left. The first floor lay open to the world. The second floor cracked and filled with holes. Little remained.

Should no pony happen across this place soon, her efforts would be proven entirely in vain. Much of her life was spent in loneliness, to spare any around her the risk. Having been orphaned early in life through an industrial accident, and her mother succumbing to an uncommon illness, she resolved then that someday she would bring as much of the worlds knowledge together in one place as she could. She came as close to this impossible goal as could be. A mere two months before the wars climactic end ministry investigators began finding evidence of her dealings that would be used to close and search the depository. They would never get the chance.

---

There are many types of sacrifice, was hers worth it?

PreviousChapters Next