I awoke from my slumber and stretched, my horn tapping against the silver headboard of my bed. My eyes were shot wide open after a second. I was quick to wake fully in the mornings. I rose from my comfortable sanctuary and trotted across the corridor and through the foyer, entering my library. I smiled as I gazed upon all the books, staircases leading to more and more levels of the library. I moved to my desk, picking up from where I left off the other day with my magic recharged.
I had been reading from a book on the anatomy of earth ponies and how they seemed to make anything grow better under the same circumstances that other ponies had. A touch of their hoof seemed to release a sort of magic from within them that gave plants a boost in their growth separate from other material resources. I trotted away from the central table and into the wing of the library that contained spells I crafted myself. I organized them all by alphabetical order and I knew exactly what spell I was looking for.
I came over to the B's and found the collection of tiny books that contained the "Body Augmentation" spells. I grabbed off the pegasus wings spell and brought it back to the desk. I then traveled outside my home, stopping into my alchemy room to get an acorn. I planted the acorn a few inches below the ground and poured water over it. I levitated my wing spell outside an focused my magic on it, but having the idea of an earth pony in my mind. I shot the spell into the ground, a solid grey beam coming from my grand horn. I felt the ground pull more and more magic from me. I got the message and poured more of my magic into it, a sapling breaking the ground soon. I continued to put more into it and the stem of the small plant formed into a trunk that began to stretch to the sky, the pine tree growing impossibly tall as I continued. I was exhausting myself, but I was making progress.
I felt a strong magic presence coming towards me and I stopped, seeing a purple alicorn with a magenta streak in her mane. This was the Twilight Sparkle that I saw coronated from the distance. The unicorn that banished Tirek again, helped to save the Crystal Empire twice, was the embodiment of the Element of Harmony Magic. I knew the winds of change were finally coming for me.
"Did-did you just make that tree grow with magic?!" She let out a very excited pip.
"Yes, I crafted that spell and you won't be able to see that anywhere else." I called parchment and a quill out to me and wrote down the procedures for casting the spell that lended me the power of an earth pony. I had only taken away to natural gift that was supposed to be given to an earth pony in Equestria. That pony would still have a good life, I had done the same to a pegasus and they turned out fine.
"A-amazing!" She shouted, throwing her hooves into the air.
I turned away from her with nothing more and started into my home. The pine was easily three times the size of my house when I looked back to it and compared the two.
"My name is-" Twilight began.
"You're Twilight Sparkle, Princess of Friendship, former student of Princess Celestia, fan of Starswirl victor over; Nightmare Moon, Discord, Tirek, Chrysalis, an ursa major, and a bug bear. You solved Starswirl's unfinished spell." I spoke, turning back around to her.
"How do you know all that about me? I knew word would travel across Equestria, but some of what you said was personal."She responded, raising her guard around me.
"I watched you since you were but just a filly. I felt your birth from here. I knew you were a special unicorn. I knew your brother was also the same. I knew you would come out here because the map would send you here alone. I want no part in whatever 'friendship problem' you think is here." I moved fully inside my home, shutting the door behind me. I went to the library and began to look around for the time travel spell of Starswirl's.
"Just hear me out." Twilight had followed me inside.
I took down Starswirl's time travel spell and looked at it for just a moment before putting it back and casting it. The light blue portal opened up in the library and my mane and tail began to go towards it along with Twilight's.
"You hear me out first." I finally responded as she attempted to hold onto my desk in the center of the library. I saw her soon lose her grip and she flung into the portal. I willing let my magic take me into it soon after.
My old home came into view around me as I landed on the tiles its library floor, Twilight in a collapsed mess. She gathered her bearings and stood.
"Hey, this looks like my old Canterlot home." She observed aloud as she trotted around.
I took her into a levitation spell and forced her to hide with me behind a bookcase as a smaller horned me came into the library.
"Your home was orginally mine. It holds a lot of history. I know you through this." I pointed at Starswirl who was entering the library.
"We need to discuss this week's findings!" Starswirl spoke and I remembered those lines as if it were yesterday. He began to give me the short lecture that i still remember.
"So, what's going on?" Twilight asked me.
"Starswirl's lecturing me on the spell that I used. I suppose you're too busy observing to ask many questions. But I lived this long by casting immortalsu, a spell only I know that nopony in Equestria should ever use. I live forever now." Starswirl soon left after my explanation and the room began to light up from my preparations of my spell.
I casted the time travel spell once more, returning us to the present through a smaller, unseen portal.
We appeared back in my library, it unchanged by anything. Twilight landed on her hooves just fine this time.
"Then why live out here?" Twilight questioned.
"It'd be suspicious if a pony lived in towns for much longer than the lifespan of a normal pony. I've also donated some spells to Equestria, particularly into your castle library. There is a spell to gain temporary wings in their now. That is a duplicate of my scroll, it has my signature on it. I live in seclusion because I choose to and I must. Now, Twilight, please see yourself out, I have a journey to make soon."
"You don't have to live in seclusion, you can find friends who can live as long as you." Twilight began to argue.
I grabbed a book of empty parchment off a separate shelf next to my desk.
"I said I have a journey to do, leave me to my research." I levitated the book into saddle pack that held my cutie mark on it. I then levitated it onto my back before floating some scrolls from my library into it.
"I have friends and I'm going to outlive them. Just because you're immortal, you don't have to give up friends." Twilight kept going, holding a firm position.
"All my 'friends' died out forty-eight thousand moons ago. Starswirl wouldn't even speak today, even if he was recently brought back nopony knows where he went to now. Now you're forcing me to evict you from my home." My horn lit up brightly with grey and I teleported both of us together into her castle, where the rest of the six were with Spike. I had casted an invisibility spell and made myself almost completely undetectable. I had also casted a spell to make myself silent save to Twilight.
"Hey, I'm not done talking to you! You can't just teleport me back here!" She yelled at me, hooves spread out in anger with her teeth showing.
"Well, I am. Now I need to go do some studying." I teleported out of the castle, seeing her friends stare upon her oddly.
I appeared in the center of the Crystal Empire, right next to the Crystal Heart. Guards stood at the doors that lead into the castle. I still kept an illusory spell active so they couldn't see my magic, I now had to let it down to free up some concentration to study this amazing artifact before me. I remained invisible and silent to all ponies around me, I made all my materials the same, only my eyes could see them.
I levitated a quill, an ink pot, and the book out of my pack and held them in front of me, my grey magic aura levitating them hard to see for the guards in the first place. I stared at the floating Crystal Heart before me. I reached a hoof out at it and poked it, feeling a magic aura emanate from it. It was indeed a strong artifact and I could feel the magic when I got close to it. I began to write down that observation as I attempted to grip the Heart with my magic and move it, finding it to refuse movement other than it's own rhythmic beating. I wrote down again.
I looked about me and saw the guards had yet to move. I trotted around the heart, thinking of what spell I'd want to cast on it first. I shot a bolt of offensive magic at it, just to see that it was absorbed and neutralized. Another observation to write down.
I had looked here from my home and saw that Flurry Heart had broken the Heart with a loud scream filled with magic, but my magic was to no avail. The Crystal Heart must had been overwhelmed by the amount of magic or specifically just Alicorn magic. I couldn't cripple any current alicorn's magic to craft a spell that can temporarily gift it to me. Equestria would have an uproar and surely notice. I moved really close to it and examined the material of the Crystal Heart myself, finding a very sharp reflection of myself in it. It was cut from the finest crystals of the Empire. I began to analyze it with my magic, trying to see how it was made or how it came to be. I definitely sensed that it was just a very fancy looking artifact made of crystal, but some powerful unicorn or alicorn had gifted it with almost unrivaled magical powers, making it almost indestructible and able to absorb magic to protect the Crystal Empire.
And then genius struck me. I could make my own. I put my book and other utensils back into my pack safely. I then teleported to the royal crystal mines, where ponies worked hard. I stopped keeping my invisibility and silence spell up and ponies soon noticed me, not caring too much that I appeared, but surely alarmed by my sudden presence. My horn soon lit up bright, a large flaring ball of grey magic at it's tip, I was only slightly straining myself. I casted the largest teleportation spell I had to date and all the workers suddenly disappeared in magic bubbles, reappearing right around the Crystal Heart in one group.
I charged up a large levitation spell and I held every pickaxe and mining tool in my magic. I smiled, giddy to get this experimentation under way. I sent every pickaxe I held to chip at the rocks, the progress being made much faster than all the workers in the mine together would have been able to do. Every drill was shattering and traveling through the hard rock and every shard of debris and rock was levitated out, I was expending a lot of magic as I worked, not once sending a tool through crystal. I was uncovering much of the precious gem.
Several minutes passed until I felt a magical presence in the mine. It radiated from one of the many giant tunnels and rooms I had dug out. I dropped all the tools and took off galloping down the specific tunnel, passing by many crystals of different colors and brilliance. It was a while until I reached the source of it.
I saw a crystal cluster the size of a wagon, the magic coming from it. I trotted up to it, observed it closely, and found it to be made of the exact same crystal as the Crystal Heart. I couldn't believe my eyes. I thought it was just the most beautiful crystals that had been enchanted, but it had actually come from this particular cluster and then improved upon. I took my book out and quickly wrote this finding in it, putting it away once more. I would create my own Crystal Heart.
A flash of light blue came from behind me, followed by magic residue in the air. I turned around and looked at the pony behind me: pink furred, large horn, pearlescent wings, a small gold crown adorned with matching shoes, a cutie mark of the Crystal Heart, and a mane and tail of pink, purple, and yellow streaks. This is Cadence, Princess of the Love and the Crystal Empire.
"I heard the miners mysteriously teleported out of the mine and to my castle. I never expected a single pony to be responsible." Cadance spoke calmly, imposing that I identify myself.
I turned around, my horn quickly catching her attention. I couldn't blame anyone for staring at it, it was larger than Celestia's.
"I only had to take things into my own hooves. I mean no harm to you or your people. I'm almost done and then I'll be out of your mane." I spoke in my normal gruff voice. I could feel some tension in the air.
"I suppose that meant you wanted to mine extremely fast. I am relieved you left the crystals alone, but who are you? I've never seen a unicorn quite like you." She inquired the one question everypony wanted to know.
"I'm Shadow Aura, but my life won't matter to you soon enough." I began to cast the massive teleportation spell yet again, a large magic ball gathering at my horn. I gritted my teeth, a lot of my magic was already expended today.
The miners soon appeared all in the room we were in, every last one appeared in a grey flash.
"Unharmed like I said. I need to go home now, I have a lot of rest to get." I began to cast a smaller teleportation spell for me and the crystal cluster, but I felt a magical interference and looked to Cadance. Her horn was glowing light blue and she was stopping my spell. I canceled my casting because of my little magic left.
"Please, just let me leave. I want to go sleep in my bed." I sighed out, my ragged mane flopping.
"Please, Shadow Aura, tell me why you came here to do this." She said calmly, a concerned look on her face.
"I'm studying the Crystal Heart and I want to try making one of my own. I'm of no threat, I've given Equestria spells in my seclusion. Let me free please." I was at the end of my rope.
"Make a Crystal Heart of your own?" She inquired, confused.
"The tests I want to run could possibly harm the Heart, so I wish to make one of my own so yours would remain untouched." I responded.
"That's understandable and I don't believe even you could succeed. Please stay here without trouble until Princess Celestia arrives. I think she would want to see you." Cadance looked to one of the bystanders and nodded. The miner took off, galloping as fast as he could.
"No! I mean no, please. I can't talk to Celestia. She mustn't know of my existence." I panicked at her words. Celestia would most certainly be able to detect my unnatural form if she hasn't been told by Twilight already. She would certainly force me to do things I didn't intend to in my life.
"What's so bad about Celestia? And what are these spells you've created?" Cadance wanted more and more answers about my personal life.
"Celestia would force me into living a different way that I do not wish to. If I show you two of my most recent spells, may I go? You will not be disappointed." I wasn't going to give her too much information and I needed to distract her questions to a different conversation line.
"What spells are they?" I had definitely gotten her interest.
"I can show you now, just bring me a seed. If I do show you...promise me to lend me some of your magic so I can travel home."
"Maybe, show me them first, Shadow Aura." She responded, very intrigued. She looked to another miner,"Please go send for a seed, it is your choice to what seed." She commanded in the nicest of voices that surely wasn't being shared with me at the time. Her actual voice was as soft as ponies I overheard said during my travels for knowledge.
"I will show you one of them. the seed is needed for the other." I looked to one of the earth pony miners and pointed my hoof at him,"I need you to stand in front of me, please. I won't harm you." He looked at Cadance for guidance and she just offered a warm smile and a nod.
He slowly trotted over, meek and afraid.
"Stand still and relax your muscles." I spoke and my horn began to light up brightly, a grey color shining over the entire room. I shot a magic beam at his side and held it for a few seconds, casting the wing spell I made. After I casted it, I lowered my head, panting. I lifted my eyes to look at him.
Wings began to poke out his sides and grow to the length of an adult pegasus.
"Another pony is capable of taking them away. You'll have them until they are taken away. Be careful using them in a magic dense area or they may shrink away." I explained, sitting down on my haunches to relax some. doing a spell like that always required a lot of my magic. I had just enough to show the other spell. the miner that was sent for a seed had returned, holding a tomato seed in his mouth gently.
"That was...very impressive. I've never seen a spell like that. Is he just like a pegasus?" Cadance began to ask as the earth pony with wings now looked at his wings, moving them.
"He can fly, but he cannot control weather. He still has that special touch when it comes to growing plants." I explained and looked over to the pony with the seed, "please place the seed next to our new half pegasus." The pony did exactly what I asked, giddy for my next spell.
"Cadance, please consider lending me magic so I can leave, this is the rest of the magic I have left." I charged my horn up to be a bright grey once more.
A sheen of grey covered the entire room and everypony in it. I was gritting my teeth as magic formed at the tip of my horn in a ball. I soon shot it at the seed.
"Aaaaaagh!" I yelled out in pain, I was forcing so much of my magic to come out and it caused pain. Nopony was ever meant to completely use up there magic. My face was twisted into an expression of pain.
The seed cracked and a stem grew from it. the stem soon grew out and split, creating the vine like structure that tomatoes would soon grow from. After the plant covered the floor and walls of the entire room, it budded and tomatoes sprouted from each, growing easily to the size of a pony's head. I stopped the spell and faltered, falling to lay on my side. The plant was not under anypony's hooves.
"Are you okay, Shadow Aura?!" Cadance worried from the spell I had cast.
"J-just...exhausted." I was panting and out of magic to use.
"I think you've earned it. You've supplied the Crystal Empire with food for its poor families. these tomatoes will last for a while. You've done things thought impossible. You've grown food without water or fertile soil and given a pony pegasus wings almost permanently." She spoke kindly of me, her voice directed in a warm tone to me. She lit her horn up and shot a large beam of magic into my horn. I could feel myself getting some magic to use.
"I thank you, Princess Cadance. If you should keep me secret, I am at your aid if you find me in my seclusion." I stood and nodded with a smile.
I was hoping I would never have to be held to my word. I charged my horn and prepared a teleportation spell. I casted it on my and the crystal cluster behind me, sending myself and it into my library. The sun still shone in the sky and my clocks told me it was the afternoon. I casted a ward and alarm spell over my house, renewing the spell I had and trotted out of the library and down the living wing to my room. I levitated my saddle bag all the way back into the library before I climbed on top of my bed and closed my eyes.
"Twilight, are you sure this is the place? This doesn't look like where a pony would be in seclusion." I heard a smooth and mother-like voice come from my foyer, "and it seems a bit rude to enter without permission."
I dragged myself out of my bed and trotted to my foyer, opening the door with my hoof and froze, mouth agape.
"Hello! I thought that since you are immortal that maybe you know Celestia-" Twilight began in a peppy voice.
"No, go away. I don't want to talk to you or her." I stepped away and laid my hoof on the door to close it.
"Shadow Aura...is that really you?" Celestia said, leaning her head closer to look at me and more specifically my cutie mark. She smiled at the black mist surrounding a grey horn.
"NO!" I shouted and turned back, letting off a teleportation spell, moving Celestia and Twilight far, far off into the Gauntlet of Fire's very center. I closed the door afterwards and trotted back to my bedroom, climbing in and closing my eyes, sleep slowly coming to me.