Ponies in Hogwarts

by KittyrinnAiko


Chapter 11: Bludger Jinxes and a Dirty Rat

Nova headed off to class that morning about as happy as she’d been in a long time, longer then she could remember it seemed. She’d gotten to see Luna, her muma, and she’d be staying for the next two nights though she hadn’t said where. Luna had talked about a lot of embarrassing things, but when it came right down to it, Nova didn’t care. It was like being home. She’d even been provided with all the books she’d need inside a carry all that was no bigger than a typical school bag on the outside, and just big enough for everything she might need for the day on the inside. It also meant no more using the backpack of Ensign Nightfoal. She ran everything up to her room, put away what she wouldn't need, and placed everything she would need in the carryall. Potions was going to be her first class now that she was back, and along the way, she happened to spot a dust-colored cat with large lamp-like eyes. The students didn’t seem to care too much for the scraggly old cat, which Nova decided was just fine when she’d recognized the mottled patchy aura that looked to be full of holes. Nova knew well what type of aura that was having seen it before and knew exactly what she needed to do. Nova walked right up to the cat, snatched it up, holding it tight, right arm about the front paws, and the left holding the gut. “Forced loving!” Nova exclaimed while holding the startled cat in tight. It could honestly be said that everyone else was just as startled as the cat.

Mrs Norris hissed and spit as Nova poured on the loving while rubbing her check on the creature's head. Mrs Norris tried to kick, but the position of Nova’s left arm had all but immobilized the hind legs. Her front legs were immobilized to, and when she tried to bite the arm that had hold of her, all she got was a taste of pegasi magic, with a hint of alicorn and something else that had a suspicious Canidae flavor. And then she gave up… Mrs Norris hadn’t felt so much love in such a long time, and it was being freely given, not taken. What’s more, the love was being poured on at a rate that was staggering. Mrs Norris slowly closed her lids down to slits, and began to purr.

“I thought you could use a little love,” Nova said, gave the cat one more head rub, set her down gently, and walked away.

Mrs Norris just sat there stunned, oblivious to the goings-on around her.

“Would ya get a load of that.” Someone said. “I think she broke Mrs Norris.” When Mrs Norris finally did get up she wondered off staggering about and mewing loudly as if drunk.





“What was that?” Hermione hissed. “That was Filch’s cat. Mrs Norris.”

“That was insane,” Harry said with a smile. He’d nearly forgotten that they were on their way to potions.

“What, I saw a cat, I hugged it?” Nova offered with a sly smile.

“She watches the students, and any time anyone does anything even remotely out of line, she runs and gets Filch, the caretaker of the castle.” Apple Bloom explained sounding a bit too bitter.

“Well, I think I know the cure for that.” Nova offered.

“A good swift kick?” Ron asked.

“I’m guessing Filch is a miserable person with no love or compassion.” Nova mused.

“Never was there a more miserable wretch.” Sweetie Belle offered.

“Worse than old Ebeneezer?” Nova asked.

“Oh, far worse.” Hermione offered, suspecting she knew who Nova was talking about. “Filch actively seeks to cause misery.”

“And poor Mrs Norris has been surviving off scraps of praise.” Nova offered. “And I’ve a mind to take her from him.”

“You have got to be barking,” Ron said as they entered the potions lab.

Nova hung back a bit as everyone found their work stations. Segregated. It was double potions with Slytherin, and everyone was segregated by house. Nor was there the friendly banter she’d grown accustomed to.

“And why are you just standing there?” Professor Snape sneered as he entered the room.

“I’m terribly sorry sir, but I haven't been assigned a work station yet.” Nova offered.

“Well if you’d bothered to be here at the beginning of the semester, you’d have been assigned a work station.” “So what was it, that was so important that you couldn't see fit to grace us with thy prescience?”

“Sir?” Nova asked. “The reasons I wasn’t here is a private family matter, but if you’ve a mind to dig further perhaps you’d like to take it up with Professor Marchbanks. I am her student.”

A deathly silence fell over the class. Nova had the feeling that Griselda Marchbanks was fairly high up considering the way Dumbledork had tried to be all chummy with her. Perhaps they were good friends, but Nova was having a hard time seeing anything other than the man he once was. As for Snape, his mind was going a mile a second. When Nova said that Professor Marchbanks was her head of house, had she, in fact, meant head of her family, and who was that woman? Oh yes, he’d seen them all at the Gryffindor table, being all buddy buddy. Maybe he’d best not push his luck, but that didn’t mean he had to actually teach this insulate brat.

“There. Use that work station.” Snape said pointing at an unused station towards the back.

“Thank you, sir.” Nova offered with a polite bow and went to the station. She’d cautioned Sweetie Belle to tie up her hair on the way back, and then fastened up her own. Nova turned, set her carryall on the workbench and waited. Snape didn’t say a thing. He turned to a blackboard, and wrote out some instructions.

“You may start now.” He said, and then looked about to see who would do what.

Nova looked at the instructions, the man’s writing was atrocious, figured out what it was he wanted, got out what she’d need, and set her bag on the floor in the back of the room. She then took a piece of paper, and quickly wrote out a checklist of everything she’d need to do.

Snape’s eyes had turned to her.

Once Nova was ready, she began.

Snape was still staring at her intently, and there was a tingling sensation right on the tip of her mind. Nova looked up at him thinking, you’ve got to be out of your bucking mind, and gave him far more then he’d ever bargained for. She’d realized Snape was trying to read her thoughts, and rather than just try to block him, she let fly the horrors of war. Not just from her own personal memories mind you, but scenes from some really intense movies. She filled his mind with every horrific thing she could come up with, slamming them in one after another. He wanted to read her thoughts, then have them damn it.

Khamûl Lord of the Nine spiced with a healthy fear of King Sombra sent Snape staggering backward. It was over. Nova went back to her task at hand.

When class was over Nova presented her work. Snape looked at everyone’s work, and awarded a point for each successful attempt, but ignored Nova. All the Gryffindors had been successful including Sweetie Belle who was usually at the center of disaster. His tone was only mildly subdued as he wasn't quite sure what to make of the images that had flooded into his mind. He knew she'd done it deliberately. Snape had been violating her privacy, and his reward had been images of a wizard war on a scale he could scarcely comprehend, against such horrors...

“I don’t know if I should be pissed at you, or thank you,” Sweetie grumbled as they made their way down to lunch.

“Snape started it,” Nova said with just an edge to her voice.

“You were putting thoughts in my head.” Sweetie Belle stated as she came to an abrupt halt. “What’s Snape have to with it?”

“I caught Snape trying to read my mind.” Nova informed them. “So I filled his head full of the worst stuff I could think of.” She all but spat out. “Really put me off my good mood too. Anyway, because he did that, and I was at such a good vantage point, and couldn't physically tell people when they were about to mess up without Snape seeing, and getting on my flank about leaving my work station, I prompted people telepathically.”

“You can do Legilimency?” Hermione asked. “And you and Snape were battling it out in the classroom?”

“You’ll get suspended for sure,” Ron said horrified.

“Suspended? What’s he going to do, go tell Dumbledore I wasn’t going to let him read my mind? - Harmony knows who else he’s been messing with.”

“You don’t think he’s been doing that to us do you? Poking his mind in where it doesn’t belong, invading our privacy, do you?” Ron asked. “And who’s Harmony?”

“Trying that on me, invading my privacy. I wouldn't put it past him.” Nova offered. “Come on let's go get something to eat.”

“One other thing,” Sweetie Belle asked, “why’d you insist I tie up my hair?”

Nova leaned in, and whispered, “Unicorn hair is reactive to potions.”

“You mean all those disasters were because of her Animageus form?” Hermione asked dumbfounded. The others laughed as their previous good mood returned.

:unsuresweetie:

A little while later at lunch, Nova was dismayed to find that Potions was the only class they had on Friday.

“Yes, it is a rather light scheduled for the first years.” Hermione offered. “Not tself-studyt do my fair share of self-study.”

“Speak for yourself.” Ron protested.

“Quidditch team will be practicing. There’s going to be a game next weekend, and we’ve been doing a lot of practicing.” Scootaloo informed her. “You can come out and watch.”

“So are you the Seeker this year?” Nova asked.

“No, Harry got picked for that,” Scootaloo replied. “I’m alright with it.”

“Everyone thinks she’s got it on account of the Nova broom.” Ron offered.

“Nova broom?” Nova asked.

“It sort of picked me.” Scootaloo offered.

“Neville got in a hurry on our first time out, and went shooting strait up about twenty thirty feet, and then fell off his broom.” Ron offered. “And then they’re all like Cutie Mark Crusaders emergency medical response, made a stretcher using their robes and a couple brooms.”

“They are well practiced in making stretchers.” Nova offered.

“Neville was out cold, and the three of us carried him to the nurses office. Apple Bloom offered. “That broom followed her.”

“And then I was told to keep it.” Scootaloo replied.

“It followed you?” Nova asked. She’d certainly never added that spell.

“It’s picky about who it lets fly it too.” Ron offered. “It’ll go nice and easy for weak fliers, but if it don’t like you, it’ll put you in the hospital. It’s been nicknamed the widow maker. Won’t let Fred or George touch it.”

“Gee, I wonder why?” Nova said sarcastically. “Kind of sounds like it’s possessed though.”

“Legend says it was made by a mad genius who had both a phoenix and a pet night mare.” Ron continued. The crusaders gave Nova a curious look while Ron continued on with the story about how Harry was chosen to be the Seeker. “Oliver Wood, the captain, is a little iffy under the circumstances about putting Harry in the game, but it was Professor McGonagall who brought Harry to Wood’s attention. - Kind of hard for him to say no.”

“Way to pile the pressure on Harry, Ron.” Nova said with a smile.

“Harry will be great, I’m sure of it.” Ron said quickly.

“I actually know something about that broom.” Nova offered. She leaned over, and whispered. “It’s got a pegasus primary feather in the shaft.”

“So do you think it chose Louise because of her pegacorn form?” Hermione asked.

“Anything is possible.” Nova offered. “What worries me is it might be possessed by a previous owner. - But don’t worry, I’m sure it’ll be fine.”

“You’re a lot of help, you know that don’t you.” Scootaloo offered sarcastically.

“I do try.” Nova offered, and turned to Hemione. “Any chance I can get a list of assignments, I’m going to have a lot of stuff I need to catch up on if I’m going to get full credit for the year.”

“You’re not asking us?” Sweetie Belle asked sounding wounded.

“I know what your notes look like.” Nova replied with a smile.

“You keep forgetting that she knows us.” Apple Bloom offered while Scootaloo did her best not to laugh.

“Well, I’m done.” Scootaloo announced. “I’m going to head on up, and get my haunted broom.”

“I’ll go with you, I want to get a better look at that broom.” Nova offered, and Hermione followed them up.

When they’d arrived Nova picked up the broom and gently caressed it. It lifted up into the air at just her touch. Owing to the Equestrian preservation spells she’d used on it, it was still in really good shape. “I see...” Nova mused, and then cast a fox fire spell on it causing it to glow.

“What spell is that?” Hermione asked.

“Afraid it’s not one I can teach you.” Nova informed her. “Has to do with my mixed heritage. It’s a unique form of magic that’s from my father’s side of the family. They have some rather unique ancestry.”

“Do you mean like Veela?” Hermione asked. “I’ve read about them.”

“Nope, not Veela.” Nova informed. “Dad is descended from an Byakkosan-tenko.” Nova wasn’t too worried as she figured that not even Hermione would be able to figure out that reference. “Yes, there’s been a considerable amount of spell work added to this.”

“What makes you think there’s been spell work added to it?” Hermione asked. “And how can you even tell?”

“Would you believe me if I told you I built this?” Nova offered.

“Maybe.” Scootaloo said with a twinkle in her eye. “But you’ll have to tell us later, I need to get to practice.”

“Alright.” Nova replied, her magic seemed to soak into the broom, and then she passed it over to Schootaloo who took it, and went downstairs. “Alright, lets study. We can sit in my little reading room, there’ll be fewer interruptions.”

It wasn’t long before books and parchment was scattered all over the place, as the two happily went over everything that had been covered up to that point. As to the volume, Nova found she was just a little disappointed in how little there was.

“Light scheduled is right.” Nova said as she leaned back to stretch.

“I know right?” Hermione affirmed. “Seems to be all the guys can do to manage though.”

“What about the trio?”

“To be honest, they are handling the work load fine. If anything I think they need more just to keep them out of trouble. Personally, I think they are brilliant, they just tend to loose focus.”

“Ya, they do have that quality.” Nova said with a smile as she looked out the picture window. Gadgull was flying about as if to find something, and there was an air of panic about him. “I’m going to use the toilet.”

Nova got up, went into her bedroom, into the toilet and bath area of her bedroom, closed the door, and teleported to the other side of the book shelf. What she found was Princess Luna in all her Alicorn glory giving Alalme the third degree, the door to the rotunda was wide open, and no sign of the foals.

“Nova, I think there’s something wrong with Moonie?” Alalme said casting a glance to Nova.

“That’s not Moonie, that’s my muma. Where are the foals?” Nova asked as Miss Aiko came running in from the rotunda.

“They’re outside, the door was left open, and they got out before I could get to the door!” Miss Aiko called.

“Sweet Luna mother of ponies!” Talma exclaimed as she came up the steps. She’d just done a sweep downstairs. Gadgull came up behind her. Princess Luna had a rather odd look on her face.

“Foals?” Luna asked, the news sinking in as Nova transformed to her pony form, cautious not to transform her clothing as well and stashing everything into that sort of temporary pocked dimension where such things went. Nova galloped for the exit with Alalme, Talma, and Gadgull following quickly on her heals. Luna realized a moment later what she must have done, transformed herself to look more like the local pegasi, and followed quickly after.

Goldwine and Alya delighted in their new freedom. They flitted from place to place exploring the towers, and roofs, while concerned pegasi looked out from their nests wondering who the out of season foals were? And what were those white puffy things around their bottoms? The foals turned, and on spotting the activity at the quidditch pitch made a beeline right for it.

Now the local pegasi were a little more then mildly concerned. Nest mates started issuing forth from their various windows.

Scootaloo was out at the pitch at this time practicing her broom flying, while the Gryffindor team practiced passing the quaffle, and clubbing bludgers. Scootaloo caught sight of a familiar gold colt in a nappy out of the corner of her eye, and then she saw the bludger headed strait for him. The twins would later plead that the bludger had gotten away from them, but the who and why wasn’t on Scootaloo’s mind. Scootaloo’s one thought was to protect that colt, and to get there before the bludger could. The mother instinct had hit her hard earlier that month owing to an ill conceived spell the Crusaders had cast, and her own personal safety was now the last thing on her mind. Not knowing how fast her broom could go she abandoned human form, and using the technique Nova had shown her, raced to intercept. Somehow she’d gotten there just in time, wrapping her forelegs around Goldwine just as the bludger hit. It grazed her left wing, and slammed into her body. Both hits causing intense pain. That wing was now useless, and she couldn't fly on a wing and a prayer. She didn’t even know the right prayer. Down they went while the bludger circled around for another go.

What the majority of the people in the stadium saw was a golden pegasus with a magenta mane come out of nowhere to shield a foal of similar hue with a mane the color of wine, who by her actions took the hit, and was downed by the runaway bludger. This was followed by a mostly white pegacorn blasting the bludger with a beam of intense magic driving it so far into the ground it would take a mining operation to retrieve it, and then she turned her magic to the falling pegasus cushioning the landing. She was followed by a sable foal, two sable mares, a chestnut paint, and a gray stallion while more pegasi flocked over head.

Sweetie Belle, and Apple Bloom ignoring all calls not to approach the pegasi ran to the fallen pony. Madam Hooch was hot on their heals to stop the girls, or at least pull them to safety.

And then they were gone.

“Gadgull, go back out and let those pegasi know what happened.” Nova commanded. Nova was now in war mode.

“I’ll take the foals to the room.” Alalme said. “Come on you two, you’re getting a time out!”

“Anything I can do?” Asked Sweetie Belle.

“Sweetie, Apple, just stand over there until I say otherwise.” Nova ordered. “Scootaloo, your wing is broken.”

“I think a few other things are broken too.” Scootaloo said in a pained tone.

“Let me.” Luna offered.

“No, I’m a trained battle medic as well as a message runner.” Nova offered pointing at her armor. Luna had wondered about that and was curious to hear the tail, but not now. “Aiko!”

“Got it.” Aiko offered dropping a large white box. On it was a red cross overlaid with a heart.

“I’m going to realign the bone, and set it.” Nova said. Scootaloo cried out in pain. “Talma, take Apple Bloom down to the lab, and bring us a mild pain killer, and bone restorative.”

Apple Bloom transformed to her pony self, Talma brightened in realization, and the two raced downstairs.

“Is there nothing I can do?” Sweetie Belle asked. She transformed, and sat on her plot.

“You can come around to Scootaloo’s head and offer encouragement.” Nova offered as she braced the wing and fixed the brace in place. “Scootaloo, how are you doing?”

“I’ve been worse.” Scootaloo offered. Nova smiled, and refrained from making any comments that might make Scootaloo laugh. Scootaloo had indeed been worse on more then one occasion.

:unsuresweetie:

Through all this Madam Hooch watched in dumbfounded astonishment. The gray pegasus who’d been identified as Gadgull returned a few moments later with a trio of concerned pegasi, and pony Apple bloom came running back into the rotunda a few minutes later with a couple vials in a small basket she carried in her mouth. She also knew Apple Bloom, Sweetie Belle, and Scootaloo, Louise to her, by their cutie marks. Scootaloo’s mark, a sort of birth mark, but it wasn’t a birth mark, had been brought to her attention by the other girls in the team, and then they’d learned that all three girls had similar marks like they were part of some club. Most of the Gryffindor girls had been aware of the marks, but never said a thing. An inspection by Madam Pomfrey had reveled the marks to be magic in origin, but no known removal spell could touch them. A couple attempts had even done physical harm to the skin while doing nothing to the marks.

The pony who seemed to be calling all the shots had a mark as well, as did an appaloosa sable. What was more, these ponies were conducting themselves in much the same manner as witches and wizards would. Three were pegacorns, Sweetie was apparently a unicorn, or at least could turn into one, and Apple Bloom had the appearance of an ordinary pony save for the bright pastel colors.

Scootaloo let out a yell as Nova used her magic to snap some ribs back in place. The potions Apple Bloom had brought up were at least starting to work in providing relief, and Scootaloo let out a soft sigh.

“You’ve got this.” Sweetie Belle offered encouragingly.

“Muma, if you could lift her up, I’m going to do a chest rap.” Nova offered.

“So now what?” Scootaloo asked. Being suspended like that actually made her feel better. “Am I going to be stuck like this? What do we tell people? Did anyone see me transform?”

“Um, I, I could ask around for you?” Madam Hooch offered. She’d actually considered herself as something of an expert on pegasi, but all this was on a whole new level. It was like she’d just discovered the home of one of the legendary high elves. In the center of the rotunda was displayed a petite suit of horse armor, banners hung from the columns, paintings hung on the walls, and a fresco depicting day and night ruled by pegacorns on the ceiling. They were definitely fae of some kind, extremely intelligent, and likely very powerful. If pegasi had a ruling class, this would be it. The excitable phoenix flying around also meant that the student who suddenly showed up at school two months late was also connected to these, these ponies.

“Oh horse apples.” Apple Bloom swore on realizing the quidditch teacher had been there the whole time.

“Um, this might be an awkward time,” said one of the pegasi who’d come with Gadgull, and spoke in the old ponish. “There is an issue of an egg that was given to the trio in the top of this tower, by the human. We don’t seem to know where it came from or who it belongs to?”

Scootaloo understood just enough to know they had an egg, and didn’t know who it belonged to. “Mine!” Scootaloo called. “It’s my egg.”

“Yours?” Luna asked. Surly Scootaloo was too young to be laying eggs yet?

“You mean Hagrid didn’t eat it after all?” Apple Bloom asked. Madam Hooch made a mental note to keep Hagrid away from all pegasi eggs.

“Tell us what his name is so that we might banish his nether regions to the moon.” Luna said with the air of a parent about to commit murder.

“Haven’t we already done that joke?” Sweetie Belle asked.

“It wasn’t any colt’s doing it was Sweetie Belle.” Apple Bloom offered.

“Sweetie?!” Luna, and Nova exclaimed.

“Wait, what was the spell?” Luna prodded.

“It’s not like that.” Sweetie protested. “We turned Moaning Myrtle into an egg.”

“Who?” Nova and Luna asked.

“So that’s what happened to her.” Madam Hooch said. “Moaning Myrtle is, or rather was, a ghost in the second floor toilets.”

“Second floor Toilets where the large sun pegacorn seal is?” Nova asked.

“Yes, that one.” Madam hooch offered.

“That’s just a little to coincidental. Do you know what she died from?” Nova asked.

“I’m to understand it was a spider bite.” Madam Hooch offered.

“What kind of spider?” Luna asked.

“An acromantula.” Madam Hooch informed them.

“I’m going to need to see that egg.” Luna offered.

“Might be a good idea to see if it’s even a viable egg and weather or not there is a pony, or a girl in that egg.” Nova suggested.

“Hadn’t thought of that.” Luna replied. “I was more concerned about residual memories. No pony wants to wake up into a new life remembering about being bitten by an acromantula. - Sweetie, I’d like to see the spell, what kind of spell is it, and where’d you get it?”

“Well it’s a unicorn spell, that’s why I was the one who cast it, and it was Auntie Twili.” Sweetie Belle explained.

“I am definitely going to have to talk to her about what sort of spells she gives the three of you.” Luna grumbled.

“Well I’m all done here. What say we take Scootaloo into the lounge. She can lay on one of the sofas in there for now.” Nova offered.

“So how long am I going to be like this?” Scootaloo asked.

“The wing bracing will need to stay on for a couple weeks at the least.” Nova informed her. “No flying for a month, though I’d prefer to keep you grounded for two. I wouldn't even think about trying to transform for a few days. On the one hand, it’ll be a great way to keep the wings immobilized, but on the other hand it’s going to hurt like that time you tried to nail your own horseshoes, and missed.” She paused to let what she'd sais soak in. “I don’t want to rush the healing process anymore then I have to because it could cause a deformity of the wing.”

“Ah, what about school? What are we going to tell people?” Sweetie Belle asked.

“That’s easy, she can’t come to class because she’s a little horse with a broken wing.” Apple Bloom offered.

“No, that’s probably not a good idea.” Madam Hooch offered. “We could just say she got thrown off by that broom she’s riding. People will believe that. - Listen, your taking me here is going to be fairly easy for me to explain as I’m the person who looks after the school flock when there is an issue they can’t handle on their own. - Now, in order to keep the scope of this under wraps, I’m going to need to bring in some co conspirators?”

“You know I could just erase your memory of this whole incident.” Luna offered.

“You could, but then there’d be the issue of their not getting proper medical treatment, such as when Scootaloo got sick last month.” Madam Hooch offered. “Scootaloo, you got sick right after you participated in that spell, didn’t you?”

“Maybe.” Sweetie Belle offered.

“I heard something about it from her father, her new father I should say.” Luna offered. “Mind telling me what it was?”

“It was a severe mineral and calcium deficiency, and she was showing signs of enema. As a result of which she was suffering from numbness, muscle cramps, and poor apatite, along with fainting, and lethargy.” Madam Hooch offered.

“Sweetie Belle, could you go get that spell Twilight sent you?” Luna asked.

“We’ll need to bring Madam Pomfrey in on this, she’s the School nurse.” Madam Hooch offered as Sweetie belle got up and went to find the library. “And what about Dumbledore?”

“I’d rather not.” Nova said. She’d completely forgot about Hermione back in the lounge. “I don’t really know what sort of man he is now, but the first time I met him he’d had too much to drink, and was ready to relive me of my phoenix without my leave.”

“When was that?” Madam Hooch asked. Her phoenix? That meant this pegacorn was Nova Moon. Yes, the mane was the same. “The man I’ve known has always been the most upstanding citizen of our community.”

“Christmas, nineteen oh three.”

“Nineteen oh three?” That proved it, they were Fae.

“School records should show that that was the year Slytherin’s crypt was discovered. Two Wyrms were found to be on the grounds, and killed as well.”

“Hagrid?” Madam Hooch prompted.

“Can’t keep a secret to save his life.” Apple Bloom countered.

“Now what makes you say that?” Madam Hooch asked.

“The three headed dog is named Fluffy, and he’s guarding sumt’m important that belongs to Nicholas Flamel.” Scootaloo offered. Nova’s ears dropped at the name. She already knew why the man was famous, and what that stone really was, but decided to keep it to herself. For now at least. As for the trio, if they hadn’t have been avoiding Hagrid for allegedly eating Myrtle, they’d have had the stone by October.

“I see.” Madam Hooch said in a dry tone. “You haven't gone in there have you?”

“Slobbered all over us.” Apple Bloom offered.

“I suppose that would happen, he was raised with a bunch of Shetland ponies. Probably thinks he’s a horse.” “You go any further?”

“He don’t like people, and no.” Apple Bloom offered. “We’ve done some crazy things, but experience has learned us not to go jumpen down holes what we don’t know what’s at the bottom of.”

“I see.” Madam Hooch offered.

“Muma, what say we move Scootaloo.” Nova prompted.

“You probably don’t want to put too much trust in Hermione, her heart was in the right place, but she is the one who told us about the egg.”





Meanwhile Hermione is outside Nova’s small bathroom in the little apartment. “Um, Nova, are you alright in there?”

“Best let her be.” Sweetie Belle offered. She’d just come out of the closet. “You sure she’s even in there?” Sweetie Belle went to the door, knocked, and then opened it. “Nope, looks like she’s gone. Say, maybe she went down to the Quidditch pitch.”

“What, just wander off, and not say anything?”

“Well, you know how egg heads are.” Sweetie teased. “By the way, there was an incident on the quidditch field. The twins tried to bludger a pegasus foal, and hit its mother instead.”

“They did what!” Hermione exclaimed. “So help me, when I get through with them!”

Sweetie Belle waited till she was gone, and then fetched the spell book.

🦄

“Ya, we figured as much.” Apple Bloom offered as they moved Scootaloo. Scootaloo had fallen asleep. “She even helped us with figuring out the spell that created the egg, and spells that would keep Myrtle warm while we weren’t there. - Sweetie did most of the translating of the old ponish.”

“And I’m liking this less and less.” Luna offered as she placed Scootaloo on a lounge. Alalme brought a blanket to put over her, and then Nova went down to the kitchen to get a plate of Granny’s oat crackers. She gave one to all the ponies, and made sure there was some for Scootaloo.

“What ever became of the Mackintosh farm?” Nova asked just as Sweetie was returning. It was a book of spells, mostly academic, and a good deal of it in old ponish. It being a collection of spells from earlier works, some intended for banishing ghosts, some for finding or detecting, and then there was the egg spell. The egg spell was complicated ritual, and a wonderment they’d managed it at all. Luna wasn’t liking what she was seeing. It called for a unicorn to cast the spell, and a pegasus mare preferably of foal bearing age. Luna had a mind to truly lay into the girls big time, but by the looks of the spell, just the side effects of casting it wrong were going to be punishment enough. “It calls for a drop of blood, who’s did you use?”

Just the three of us.” Sweetie offered. Luna’s face developed a twitch.

:facehoof:

“So, how am I going to get out of here?” Madam Hooch asked a short time later.

“I should probably take you back the same way I brought you. And understand that we are going to trust you because the local pegasus trust you, but keep in mind what they sell in apothecaries.” Nova offered. “And Sweetie Belle, and Apple Bloom should go back the way they came as well.”

“Um, Hermione was in the dorm room.” Sweetie offered. "I might have sort of sent her out to the quidditch pitch."

Nova’s ears went flat again, and then she facehoofed.

“I sicked her on the Twins though.” Sweetie offered.

“Alright then, that might keep her distracted.” Nova offered. “Change back.”

:rainbowhuh:

A few moments later, Pony Nova deposited Madam Hooch, Sweetie, and Apple Bloom back on the pitch. She gave Sweetie and Apple Bloom a nuzzle, and lifted off into the air. She circled, spotted her old broom drifting towards the forbidden forest, raced to it, and brought it back to the pitch like a dog with a bone. She gave it to Apple bloom.

“Maybe we can play fetch sometime.” Apple Bloom teased. Nova snorted, and then took off again. Several teachers hurried over having heard about the abduction.

“I’m well. A bit bemused, but alright.”

“Chasing after pegasi even after you’d been told to stay well clear of those animals, that’ll be fifty points...” McGanagall began, and then her jaw dropped.”

“Awarded to Gryffindor.” Madam Hooch stated firmly.

“What?” Snape said not quite sure he’d heard what he thought he’d heard.

“And we were wrong about that egg. The girls had been taken into the confidence of a clutch of pegacorns, and our meddling may have caused that egg irreparable harm in that in our ignorance it had not been returned to the right mother.” Maddam Hooch stated. “Oh, and Miss Magnus injured herself earlier, and may be out of action for a while.” She had to take a moment to catch her breath. “Bloom, and Sweetie demonstrated excellent equine management in the care that they rendered this afternoon as well.”

“Ya, we pretty much live and breath everything horse back home.” Apple Bloom offered trying not to smile.

“I’ve a mind to take points from Fred and George Weasley for their recklessness, but that wouldn't be fair to the rest of Gryffindor.” Madam Hooch stated. “But I am going to give them detention.”

“But what all happened, where did you go?” McGanagal asked.

“Well, we were all apparated in one go strait to where they nest. And it was the easiest smoothest transport I’ve ever experienced. Like blinking, and finding myself suddenly in a different location. Assistance was provided for the stricken pegacorn, and we were brought back.”

“How badly was it hurt?” McGonagall asked.

“Broken wing, and cracked ribs. The wing has been mended, and the chest cavity wrapped. - I shudder to think what would have happened had that bludger hit that foal.” Pegasi were known to drop rocks from beyond wand range when sufficiently angered. Of course they had bombs of other kinds as well. The kind that went splat.

“Now, if you’ll excuse me, I need to go talk to Madam Pomfrey.” Madam Hooch said once everyone had a chance to process what she’d said. “Girls, you can go back to your free time, though you may want to make sure you are caught up on assignments.”

“Yes Mam.” Apple Bloom, and Sweetie said, and hurried off.





Nova landed on the balcony, entered, closed the door, walked past several pegasi that were still there, and apparently just hanging out. “Be sure and close the door when you go.” Nova said in the old ponish. She continued to the next door. Luna had the egg now. “Muma, if you find any thing that we might want to look into, I’d like a copy of it. There are memory vials in the clinic room.”

“What sort of things?”

“Well if the spider bite wasn’t an accident, or anything having to do with Salazar Slytherin or the chamber of secrets.” Nova offered. “We sealed up one entrance, but they never found any others, nor how the wyrms were getting in and out of the school while I was here last. - Now, I’m going to go lay down with my son.”

“Excuse me?” Luna asked as a vein bulged on her forehead. “Tell us his name that we might slay him.”

“He, and his egg mother were killed by a Wyrm. I killed one of the Wyrms rescuing Goldwine’s egg. Now, there are wards that resist my teleportation spell, and I’m worn out.” Nova then went into the bedroom, climbed up onto the bed, and lay down with the foals who were more then happy to snuggled up.

“So, what kind of a relationship do you have with my daughter?” Princess Luna asked Alalme, she was sitting a short distance away, and was watching Scootaloo.

“Before I came here an injury like that would have ended a life.” Alalme said quietly. “As for our relation, it’s complicated.” She thought about what she wanted to say. “She rescued me. I was tethered in a barn, along with my new foal Alya. Even if I could free myself it was the dead of winter, and Alya too young to do much of anything. - And there she was, half pony, half predator, and she was beautiful because she was liberation.” Alalme smiled thinking of that moment. “Sometimes we are like siblings, just like sisters. Sometimes she seems so much like a little foal, and at other times she gives me the feeling of a pony aged beyond my comprehension. Nor had she come after me for my own sake. She wasn’t there to rescue me. She’d rescued an egg from a creature that we were helpless against, and the mother instinct had taken hold of her. - She’ll do anything for Goldwine.”

“I see.” Luna replied as she cradled Myrtle. “I got a taste of that duality of hers today. This morning she was my delightful little foal. This afternoon she is an accomplished member of my personal guard. - I’m finding it difficult to wrap my mind around it. And I am all to familiar with the lengths the mother instinct will drive us. Seems to hit winged ponies the hardest. - Scootaloo has it bad.”

“How simple it would be to just drop an egg, and go about our lives leaving it behind without a second thought. And yet we brood over that egg even to the point of daring to face our worst nightmares head on for the sake of the little one inside.” Alalme offered in quiet contemplation.

On noticing that Scootaloo was restless in her sleep Luna took Myrtle, and placed her under the blankets next to Scootaloo. Scootaloo did her best to cuddle the egg, and then quieted.

“You are such a broody little hen, you know that don’t you?” Luna whispered as she gave Scootaloo a loving cares on the top of her head.

🥚

That night after everyone had turned in, Nova was on the prowl. She was a fox on a mission. Her target: Mrs Norris. What with everything that had happened she’d nearly forgotten about Mrs Norris, but now, now she’d a need for that specific feline that was forcing her to push her plans regarding Mrs Norris ahead. She needed her, and she needed her tonight. The only question was would she cooperate? Nova had learned of Mrs Norris’s habit to patrol the halls at night from the Weasley twins who were more then willing to provide whatever information they might. They’d even given her a rather unique map in an effort to get back into the good graces of all those around them.

Silently the owl winged fox glided through the halls. To the casual observer she was just another pet out wondering the halls. To Peeves, she was a predator to be avoided. Peeves had no desire to be made into a pinball ever again.

But would Mrs Norris even be out prowling after what Nova had done to her? Nova had to think about it, and the answer was yes. Mrs Norris wasn’t just reporting every little infraction for the sake of praise, she was doing it to maintain order within the hive.

There.

Target sighted. Prepare for glomp.

Nova glided into position, dove down, snatched up Mrs Norris, and teleported away.

“What was that? Who’s there?” Filch called as he issued forth from a secret passage. “Mrs Norris?” He looked about. “Now where has that cat gotten to?”





Suddenly Alicorns.

Mrs Norris had been doing her patrols for the sake of order if for no other reason when the beast struck. The hallway vanished – oh Bucking sweet mother of Chrysalis – Princess Bucking Luna!!!!

Princess Luna was sitting on the floor next to a golden pony who looked to be another alicorn sleeping on a large cushion, and was presently drawing silver tendrils from an egg, and depositing them in crystal vials. Mrs Norris knew what that was, but what sort of memories might an egg have? Shouldn’t she be placing memories in the egg so that the hatchling will understand its place in the hive?

Mrs Norris looked to see who her captor was, black pony legs, white chest, head, wings, oh buck another bucking alicorn! Her doom was upon her.

“Oh don’t tell me you’ve foal-napped a kitty?” Luna asked looking puzzled. “You are a puzzle.”

“This is Mrs Norris, and she is the answer to or little problem.” Nova offered.

“A cat?” Luna asked with a bemused expression. “And which problem? We seem to have many.”

“Mrs Norris is a changeling. - Come along, change back to your ever loving love bug self, Mrs Norris.” Nova prompted.

Mrs Norris let out a sigh and transformed into her little black buggy self. Her visage marred only by a small white placard glued to the outer shell of her left wing with the number fifty three on it.

“What? But how did you know?” Luna asked. “And why bring her here?”

“I’m a fox pony. Fox ponies can sense the life forces of living things, and my own inner sight is so sensitive I can actually see the aura of just about everything. Changelings have a particularity interesting aura that is unmistakable to any fox who can see it, and knows what they are looking at.”

“What do you want with me?” Mrs Norris asked grumpily.

“Aww, is that any way to talk to the pony who topped you off with love this morning?” Nova asked rubbing her chin on top Mrs Norris’s head.

“Well you do want something, though I don’t see why you are bothering. Changelings are a threat to foals and weaker ponies. I’m surprised you didn’t just kill it.”

Mrs Norris shrunk back into Nova. At least Nova didn’t want her dead. ‘Dead, bucking dead, buck buck bucking dead, bucked, buckety buck, bucked to the bone, buck, buck, buck...’ Mrs Norris’s thoughts were filled with her bucking doom.

“Muma. Pleas. You’re frightening her. Honestly, you've got he clucking like a chicken.” Nova protested. “Besides, she’s only a threat in her present form.” If you could possibly impart on her how the changelings evolved, I think we’d have ourselves a most cooperative love bug.”

“Evolved?” Mrs Norris asked.

“Ya, those that have evolved are no longer dependent on the need to feed off the love of others.” Nova explained.

“Show me. Pleas.” Mrs Norris prompted. She’d gone so long living off scraps of emotion, this was something she wanted.

Luna contemplated for a moment, her eyes grew bright as she locked eyes with Mrs Norris. The link only took a moment, and then she leaned back to see what Mrs Norris would do with the information she’d given her. Mrs Norris seemed to be contemplating, or perhaps analyzing the information, and then a look on her face as though an epiphany had struck her. Nova decided to scoot back a few spaces. Mrs Norris lifted up into the air, light shined, a pupa formed about her, and vanished a few moments later to reveal brand new bug. She was now mostly metallic gold, with iridescent green legs, belly, wings, horns that came up on either side curved forward in the look of a tiara, and a black dot towards the end of each wing shell.

“Wow. You’re all sparkly now.” Nova offered.

“I am, aren’t I?” Mrs Norris said turning around several times on one direction, and then switching to go the other.

“Ahh, that fifty three is still there though.” Luna pointed out.

“Oh, that was stuck on me by a pony entomologist.” Mrs Norris offered. “I am outcast subject number fifty three.”

Luna let out a sight and shifted hoof to face.

“Outcast?” Nova asked. “You didn’t just get stranded here?”

“Stranded, I came here on my own volition.” She explained. “Our queen was doing crazy things, I dared to speak up because what she was doing was contrary to order and harmony. - I was forced to flee.”

“You don’t say?” Luna mused.

“We were able to live off the ambient love of pony communities.” Mrs Norris offered. “And a community must be healthy and harmonious to produce that ambient love.”

“And doing things like invading and putting ponies in cocoons would have shattered that harmony, so you spoke out.” Luna Offered.

“I did.” Mrs Norris replied. “I was deemed defective.”

“Now, there is a big favor I need from you.” Nova prompted. “I need you to impersonate a student.”

“Wouldn't that be considered a bad thing?” Mrs Norris asked.

“Well normally yes, but in this case it needs to be done for the sake of order.” Nova informed her.

“Order? How would impersonating anyone preserve order?”

“We don’t want people being concerned, and subsequently finding the truth about our dear friend Scootaloo.” Nova replied.

“I don’t know a Scootaloo?”

“You might know her as Louise Magnus.” Luna offered. “She’s our yellow pony here with the egg.”

“Oh yes, the human who is friends with the two ponies.” Mrs Norris offered. “She’s this alicorn?”

“Yes, she is.” Nova assured her.”

“Strange name for a pony. I'd have sworn she was human.” Mrs Norris mused. “Strange name even for an alicorn pony.”

“Her mother has spent a lot of time in the human world, and was found of the name Louise. Louise was given up to foster parents, for reasons I won’t go into, who started calling her Scooter Louise, and that morphed to Scootaloo.” Nova offered.

“How do you know all that?” Luna asked.

“Traveling through time and dimension a pony learns things.” Nova replied. “In fact the pegasi here actually remember you as the heroic figure of Night Fall. 'Unto the goddess of night was given a foal of dazzling beauty so much so that ponies thought he a star descended from the heavens. But the goddess of the day did covet the colt, and attempted to take him. Bla bla bla, supporters scattered to the wind.' Best I can figure is the pegasus in this area are descended from members of your household staff, and possibly some of the guard. How they got here is beyond me.”

“Oh they probably came in through the mirror of Erised. It connects to a store room in an old castle not far from Ponyville, and Professor Dumbledore is hiding the Philosopher’s stone in it.” Mrs Norris offered oblivious to the importance of what she was saying. The stone meant nothing to her, so she'd no reason not to tell the ponies about it.

“What is a philosopher’s stone?” Luna asked.

“You’d know it as a blood stone.” Nova replied.

“A what?!” Luna spat remembering the stones Sombra had made. When she’d learned how they were made she was horrified. Twilight presently had one, it was fixed to the Alicorn Amulet. No one was really quite sure why she hadn’t destroyed it. She hadn’t even placed it in a vault somewhere, no, it was on display under glass in her castle.

“Alright then, that’s two things we need to take care of.” Nova offered. “First I’d like you to step in for Louise, all you need to do is simulate the injuries typical of falling off a broom that hates you. Make it an injury to the right arm as well, and some nice convincing bruises.”

“I can do that.” Mrs Norris offered.

“Why the right arm?” Luna asked.

“Scootaloo is right hoofed. If Mrs Norris wraps up her right arm no one will expect her to write or cast spells.” “I know wizards have spells that speed up the healing process, but Scootaloo being a pegacorn, we can’t speed up the healing process to much. It has to happen as organically as we can allow. - Mrs Norris, what we’ll do is get you to the infirmary, and if we can stall for a week, I’m sure Scootaloo will be able to transform back into a human by then. But first, I’d like you to take me to that mirror.”

“But you can’t go out in the halls at night?” Mrs Norris said. She was more concerned about Nova, then worried about rule infractions.

“Well no, pony me definitely can’t go wondering about the halls, and if human me gets caught there’ll be Tartarus to pay, but there’s nothing that says fox me can’t.” And with that Nova transformed to her fox form.

“You’ve wings on your fox form now.” Luna remarked.

“The wings showed up when my flight feathers came in.” Nova offered. “Mrs Norris, you ready?”

“Hold up, your pendant?” Luna asked.

“They’ll think it’s a dog tag, and it makes it easier to cast magic without horn or wand.”

“What about if someone tries to force you to transform?” Mrs Norris asked.

“I’m not an Animageus, it won’t work, I’ve tested it. That and this seems to be my default form in this world for some reason.”

“Just one more thing.” Luna said sounding like she was hesitant. “Mrs Norris, were you here when a young man named Tom Riddle was here?”

“I was. He terrorized the school one year. When he was a prefect.” Mrs Norris told her. “He, he wasn’t human. Not in the normal sense.”

“Why do you say that?” Luna asked.

“He’d no emotions. No empathy. None what so ever. He was just blank like a gaping hole from which no light could penetrate. Gave me the creeps. And I’m a changeling. He killed Miss Myrtle, I saw him. I ran to get someone, and then he turned around, and blamed little Hagrid.”

“And you did nothing?”

“I’m a changeling. What could I do. For all their talk of how bad muggles are, wizards can be far worse, and they would as likely killed me on the spot if they knew.” She had to take a moment to calm herself down. “At least being a cat all the time is a lot safer.”

“I guess I’m asking a lot of you.” Nova asked.

“I’ll do it. For the sake of order like you said. After all if Louise isn’t produced fairly soon, they’ll start asking too many questions, and then we’ll all be in the soup.” Mrs Norris offered.

“I knew I was making the right choice by bringing you in.” Nova said, and turned into a girl again. “Turn back into a cat, and lets see if we can’t sneak out of here.” Mrs Norris transformed. “You’ve gone all floofy.”

“Mrow.”

The two made their way out to the dorm room, where they discovered Hermione was awake. Nova picked up Mrs Norris. “I’m just going to go put Mrs Norris out. She followed me to my room.” Nova informed her holding the cat. “I might sit by the fire for a bit too.”

“Mrs Norris… seriously?”

“What, she was starved for love.” Nova offered, and went down stairs.

“Now I’ve seen everything.” Hermione said, and dropped back down into her bed.

At the base of the stairs a winged fox and a cat passed into the common room, and out the portrait hole unseen by all save the fat lady. The two then made their way to the seventh floor where Mrs Norris stopped at a blank wall.

“It’s right here, not sure how to get in though?” the cat whispered.

“I can see where the opening is, I might be able to jimmy it open with a little fox magic.” Nova offered. Wisps of fog drifted from her and felt out the entrance. “Oh, right, yes of course, I do really need to get in there.” Nova said, and then a door appeared. She used her magic to open the door, and then the two went in, closing the door behind them. There in an empty room stood the mirror. Nova transformed to her pony self, and Mrs Norris transformed back to her bug self.

“Afraid all I ever see in this thing is me not having to chase after rule breakers, and everyone doing as they are supposed to.” Mrs Norris offered.

Nova looked in the mirror. “Ya, I see myself with my family, and all the friends I’ve made and left behind, but that’s not what I want right now… aha, that’s it!”

“What?”

“Well if you don’t define what you want it shows you your deepest desire, but if you tell it what you want, it’ll show you that. Come on.” And at that Nova stepped up to, and into the mirror. Mrs Norris wanting to follow after did exactly that.

They found themselves in a grubby little room with no light save for what drifted through the mirror, and that wasn’t very much being the room hadn’t been well lit. On the floor was a grubby little package.

“Don’t touch it. It’s dangerous.” Nova said as she went to the door. When she tried it, it wouldn't budge. “Well then, I guess I’m just going to have to blast it open.” She took a couple steps back, aimed her horn…

In the hall outside two guards are startled by the eruption of a section of the wall. Fortunately they weren’t anywhere near it. Other guards start running to see what the explosion was, and are startled to see a smallish young alicorn, and a gold changeling step out of the opening.

“I need a magical hazmat team, stat!” Nova ordered.

“What, who are you?”

“I am the High Priestess of Arcadia. There is a dangerous magical artifact in here. It can not be touched, and no magic is to be used to handle it. The only safe way to deal with it is with the elements of harmony.”

“Yes mam.” A guard said, turned, and ran to inform a superior and request a hazmat team.

“Who wall papers over a doorway anyway?” Nova asking of no specific pony.

“They bricked it up too.” Mrs Norris pointed out.

A captain of the guard showed up a short time later. “Who, and how did you even get in here?”

“There is a portal to another world in here. I’d recommend it be properly monitored from now on.” Nova informed them even as more guards came running. This time they were followed by Princess Twilight.

It was all Nova could do not to run to her. She smiled though, and bowed her head. “It’s a portal from Hogwarts.” Nova offered sounding a little sheepish having been thrown off her bluster.

“And who are you and what brings you here?” Twilight asked.

“I am Princess Luna’s number one shadow.” Nova said, removed her amulet, and offered it to Twilight. Twilight took it, and examined it. “And I am Princess Celestia’s agent in Hogwarts.”

“This is in deed something made by Princess Luna.” Twilight sad… Twilight examined the pendent with a probing spell and the large blue stone turned green, and burst with light. “A harmony stone!”

“And now I have to recast the spell to make it match my cutie mark.” Nova said sounding a little put off, and requested its return. “Do not tamper with or attempt to analyze the stone in the package in this room. It’s the same type of stone as what’s in the Alicorn Amulet. It needs to be destroyed, and will destroy any pony that attempts to use it.”

“But how am I supposed to destroy it?” Twilight asked as she passed Nova’s pendant back to her.

“I destroyed a small one with an artificial element of hope, so I’m guessing a full element blast should do the trick.” Nova offered hopefully. “Also, I don’t know if you’ve gotten word yet, but Scootaloo got hit by a bludger.”

“Oh no. Is she alright?” Twilight had been about to ask about the artificial stone.

“Broken wing, and cracked ribs.”

“Broken wing? - What was she doing flying around in her pony form?”

“It’s complicated, oh, and… don’t give the crusaders any more dangerous spells.”

“But I didn’t?”

“They’re the crusaders. Trust me, you did. But I’m going to leave that chewing out for Muma, er I mean Princess Luna.”

Twilight’s eyes grew wide. “Kitzu?”

“As soon as that package is on it’s way, I’ve got to get back.” Nova replied. “Nor is it safe to use this portal.”

“Alright, we’ll get it dealt with, there should be someone on the way now.” Twilight offered, hesitated a moment, and then went in search of the Evergreen palace’s hazmat team.

Twilight came back a short time later with five ponies in hazmat suits, and a large container that looked to be a cross between a cooler and a strong box. They carefully scooped up the package, placed it in the box, and latched the lid tight. This time Nova didn’t hold back, she went to Twilight, and gave her a hug. When she’d let go she ran at the far wall of the old store room, jumped, transformed into a fox and vanished through the wall. Mrs Norris followed quickly behind.

“High Priestess of Arcadia?” Mrs Norris asked on the other side.

“Well, technically it’s not exactly a lie. Now turn back into a cat, and lets get phase two of tonight’s mission accomplished.”

From there they made their way to the infirmary were they found Professor Dumbledore arguing with Madam Pomfray the school nurse.

“I’m the Head Master of this school, and you’re telling me I can’t even check on one of my own students?” Dumbledore asked in disbelief as a cat crept on past.

“She needs her rest.”

“Excuse me?” a very good likeness of a rather beat up looking Scootaloo asked. She was presently in one of the school night gowns that were kept in the infirmary, and had an arm in a sling. “Can I go back to my room so I can get some sleep?”

Madam Pomfrey proved a true veteran of the comings and goings of that school, and somehow managed to not jump out of her skin.

“Well, Head Master Dumbledore, being how you’ve woke her up, how about escorting her back to her room?” Madam Pomfrey asked as nicely as she could muster.

Dumbledore was at a loss. He’d been put off so many times, not to mention the fact that no one could remember Miss Louise being taken to the infirmary, that he’d become convinced the girl simply wasn’t there. He had the nagging suspicion members of his own staff were hiding something from him, and he was at a loss as to why. Nor could he see through changeling magic. If he could he’d have surely known that Mrs Norris wasn’t a cat. He still had the feeling he was being played but couldn't fathom why?

“They really are Fae.” Madam Pomfrey said once Dumbledore and Mrs Scootaloo Norris had left.

Somehow they managed to pull it off. Mrs Norris had hung in there for a week. Not that there hadn’t been a number of close calls. Monday started out unpleasant. Potions first thing in the morning, and Snape took a point from ScootaNorris for having the audacity to have her arm in a sling. The explanation as to why she hadn't already been healed, was that she was alergic to the healing potion, and would just have to mend naturaly. Nova had attempted to hand in the past homework assignments having completed them over the weekend with the help of Hermione only to be told that he did not accept late assignments. And in Defense against the dark arts, poor ScootaNorris nearly had a melt down.

“She’s not feeling well, I’ll get her to see Maddam Pomfrey.” Nova informed everyone, and rushed her out of the class room. The two stopped a short distance from the room.

“Are you going to be able to hold it together?” Nova asked as the two leaned against the wall. “I know it smells bad. Kind of reminds… troll fart.” Nova’s eyes widened. “That wasn’t a troll fart, that was Quirrel. He smells of death.” To be true the room stank of garlic, but the garlic was there to cover the smell of Quirrel.

“Why didn’t I see it before?” ScootaNorris said once she’d calmed down. “But then why would I pay any attention to members of the staff, they can do whatever they want. He’s so hollow. It’s like there’s no one there.” “What little I could detect was that of the remains of a shattered mind.” This statement, halting as it was, set Nova’s mind to racing, she’d been actively filtering out auras so that they wouldn't be a detraction, but now that she thought about it… Nova’s hair on the back of her neck stood on end. Professor Quirrel had all the earmarks of one of Sombra’s drones.

“What are you two doing out of class?” It was Mr Filch. Mr Filch was the last human Nova wanted to see, but exactly the person Mrs Norris needed at that moment. Both Filtch and Nova were at a bit of a loss. ScootaNorris had just hugged Mr Filch. A moment passed, and then in a whisper Mr Filch asked, “Care to explain why you’ve recruited my cat in your little clandestine operation?”

“Sir, I don’t know what you mean?” Nova asked. She was honestly and rightly flabbergasted.

“You knew?” ScootaNorris asked.

“You’re nearly as old as I am, maybe older for all I know.” Filch replied. “Why no one else ever caught on is beyond me.” He have her a pat. “Though a few have suggested you might be a lover hiding from a jealous husband. Still, you’ve been a good ally, and if I said anything now I’d be condemning myself. - Now, Miss Nova Moon, if that is your name. And you’re no first year, that much is obvious. I’m guessing a small sixteen, Maybe even a petite twenty, and that Madam Marchbanks sent you hear to investigate those girls calling themselves the Cutie Mark Crusaders. They’re not exactly first years either. We tried to remove those dark marks off those girls, but gave up because they couldn't do it with out causing irreparable damage.”

“They did what?” Nova exclaimed. “We are from Eques. If you know your Latin you’d understand ‘eques’ to mean that we are from the country of horsemen, or knights as it’s sometimes translated. We have large herds of unicorn and pegasi who we work with on a daily basis. That mark is a manifestation of magic identifying someone in our community who can work with the equines, and such is the swiftness of our armies they are known as the Cohorts of Rohan.” Nova explained, her tone seasoned with anger and bravado. She wasn’t exactly making it up on the fly either, having worked out the explanation if she should ever find herself having to explain her cutie mark. As for rohan, well that was just in intransitive verb meaning to rush, hurry, run, or sprint. Back in the 1903-04 school year it had never come up because those who knew about her cutie mark had just assumed it to be a manifestation of her alleged blood curse. “I myself have a rather elaborate marking, not just on my hips, but all the way up my back.” Nova added. “They are not dark marks. Miss Magnus is especially good at caring for injured pegacorns, few though they may be, and is tending the injured mare. And yes I am Professor Marchbanks’ student, and yes there is something going on here. And no, the Crusaders have nothing to do with it despite their propensity towards finding trouble. No, what seems to be going on here if I’m to make a guess from what I presently know, is that Headmaster Dumbledore seems to be playing a very dangerous game.”

“Dumbledore?” ScootaNorris asked as she let loose of Mr Filch.”

“I suspect he’s baited a trap for a very dangerous creature, and put everyone in danger in the process.” Nova offered.

Mr Filch just stood there. He knew more then enough to know that the traps that had been set up to protect whatever it was that was being protected weren’t going to be that difficult to get past. Not to mention the fact that Dumbledore had even gone so far as to advertise it before it was even ready. Granted it might take a few tries to get past the first three traps, but still... “So what is he trying to trap if I may ask?”

“I’m not sure what it is.” Nova offered. “But whatever it is, it’s passing itself off as Professor Quirrel. As soon as Mrs Norris came in close proximity of him, and really paid attention to him, she nearly fell apart.”

“He gives me the same queer feeling that the Riddle boy did.” ScootaNorris replied. Filch turned white as a ghost.

“We’ um, we are going to run to the infirmary. I want to see if they have any Athelas. It’ll counteract the effect that thing is having on Mrs Norris.”

“I should talk to Dumbledore.” Filch said.

“If he doesn’t already know he’s twice the fool.” Nova replied, and then she escorted ScootaNorris to the infirmary. Nova’s assumption was that Dumbledore the elder was likely just as rash as his younger self, only more calculating in the effort. Dumbledore was a man playing a game of Chess against an unseen opponent who was playing a game of Shoji.

Madam Pomfrey had never heard of Athelas. Nova let out a sigh, went to a small room which she was well familiar with, touched her wand to the wall, and produced from which a door. She then opened the door to reveal her own small clinic, went in, and retrieved a small sample of the herb. Madam Pomfrey pronounced the heard to be known as Chimpaphila umbellata with the common name of King’s cure. King’s cure was widely used in many healing brews.

“Care to tell me what’s going on?” Madam Pomfrey asked. “If I’m to be an effective healer, I need to know.”

“It’s just that...” Nova began as she placed the herbs in cups of hot water, one for Mrs Norris, and one for herself. “Defense Against the Dark arts was a bit much for Louise. What with her weakened condition.” The room began to fill with the sweat aromatic smell of wintergreen.

“I see.” Madam Pomfrey said quietly. “I’ve had a number of students coming to me with an assortment of complaints they couldn't quite put their finger on after being in his class. I imagine Louise must be extra sensitive to the smell. Why Professor Dumbledore puts up with it is beyond me, I can barely stand the smell myself, and it can’t be very healthy. Are you going to be alright going back in there again this afternoon?”

“I’ve an idea.” Nova offered as ScootaNorris sipped her broth. Nova went back into her infirmary, and returned a short time later with a container of the herb, a sheet, scissors, and string. Nova sipped some of her broth, and set to cutting circles out of the sheet. When she’d a number of circles, she placed a good sized pinch of the herb in one, pulled up the cloth, and tied it with a string. That one she placed in ScootaNorris’s school bag. She then proceeded to make several more, and placed those in her bag. After she’d finished, she finished off her broth.

To Madam Pomfrey’s astonishment both girls ate the soggy leaves.

“I’m going to let you have the remainder of what I’ve got in the container.” Nova offered. “And I’m going to give a small packet to everyone in my class. It should help.”

“Seems I’ll need a lot more.” Madam Pomfrey mused. “Can’t hurt to recruit students to make those pouches as I can’t very well ask you to make enough for the whole school. I’ll just have to distribute this to students as they come in. And as thanks for bringing this cure for the mystery ailment, I’m going to award you ten house points, and another twenty for the use of the herb.”

“Thank you.” Nova said delighted. “That should just about make up for what was wrongly taken from the girls.”

“It’s a shame that happened. Though I can’t help but think that had the girls tried to explain it, no one would have believed a word.” Madam Pomfrey offered.

“There is one other issue.” Nova prompted. “Regarding the girl’s cutie marks. It’s not some kind of dark mark whatever that is? It’s a manifestation of magic common to those of Eques, which is the country we live in. Most of us get one, and it signifies a vocational relationship with equines. Pleas pass that on, and let people know it’s nothing that needs to be removed. If you’d succeeded, the results would have been extremely harmful.”

“I’m terribly sorry that happened.” Madam Pomfrey offered. She was sincerely sorry about what had happened, and had insisted the effort to remove the marks be stopped when it was clear that they were more likely to do some real harm to the girls who’d found the whole ordeal quite traumatic. “It’s nearly lunch, why don’t you go find your friends.” Nova and ScootaNorris thanked her, and departed. The door to Nova’s infirmary had been left, but it was locked, and for what reasons she could only guess at, was only visible to herself, and Madam Hooch.

Nova gave out the herbs to each of her classmates with the explanation that it would counteract the smell of Professor Quirrel. After she was done with classes for the day she wrote a full report to Princess Celestia, who felt bound to share the information with the parents. Luna having only just returned so as to report her finding in person, wanted to go right back. Twilight advised it’d be to risky to confront whatever it was in the school. They’d need to get it out of the school. Luna sent out her best squad of Night Guard, and twenty four hours later a Harley came flying out of the portal in London. The rider was a woman dressed in black leather, she wore a helmet to match from which gold and red locks of hair protruded. Embroidered on the back of the jacket a two folded sun that resembled a yin yang symbol.

And the music was good and the music was loud.

“Unplottable my plot.” The woman said momentarily after coming to a stop. She’d been told not to go. No one tells her what to do. She looked about to get her bearings, and then started out for Hogwarts. She was going to find that school no mater what it took.

That night Nova and the other ponies were surprised by the arrival of a fully armed squad of Shadowbolts.

The week went by, Nova gaining points in Charms, Astronomy, Herbology, and even in history for outstanding work, and showing the initiative to get in the assignments she’d missed. Professor Binns had been no different then the other ghost, and seemed delighted that she could make it to class. Which in itself was rather odd being he seldom showed anything resembling an emotion. Nova was given detention in Transfigurations. Sure several students had hissed, no don’t do it, but she just couldn't resist giving the kitty some forced loving.

Scootaloo was finally healed up enough to transform in time to go watch the quidditch game, and Mr Filch actually demonstrated genuine affection on Mrs Norris’s return. As for Mrs Norris the cat’s sudden change in behavior, if any one had noticed that she was being more personable, and less likely to go fetch someone for every little rule infraction, they kept it to themselves.

Hermione went out to the game with Ron. The trio of Ron, Harry, and Hermione had grown close since the incident with the troll. The Crusaders might have joined them, they considered Hermione a friend, but they’d even more reason to keep her at arm’s, or rather, foreleg’s length. Non of the ponies wanted her to learn the secret of Nova’s room for fear she’d run strait to Professor McGonagull. Nova was no where to be seen having begged off, saying she had too much studying to catch up with. Hermione had volunteered to help, but Nova insisted she go watch the game. Not that Nova had any intention of missing the game, she just wanted to watch the game with Alalme and some of the other pegasi who were curious about the game.

“I can understand bringing snacks, and drinks,” Alalme asked as they landed on top the canopy above the stands, “but why bring those little rocks?” Nova had placed a hoof full of river rocks in the bag they’d brought.

“I did a divination reading prior to placing my bet on the game.”

“Is that even allowed?” Alalme asked. One of the nearby pegasus guards was chuckling quietly to themselves.

“Well, lets just say that divination isn’t always one hundred percent dead-on. You could even say I’m betting on my accuracy.”

“And the rocks?” Alalme asked.

“Something I saw in my reading suggested it’d be nice to have some rocks to fling at a certain pair of dark wizards.” Nova offered.

“Princess?” Asked a small gray pegasus who was sitting close by. Her wings looked suspiciously like bat wings with feathers atached.

“Lt Mouse, I expect Troll Fart to go after Mr Potter. No idea why, but I figured a good stone in the hooves of a practiced unicorn, or in my case a seasoned pegacorn, is as good a counter curse as any.”

“You think you can hit him from here?” Lt Mouse asked.

“Oh ya. I can hit him.”

They watched as the teams walked out to Madam Hooch, she said a few words, blew a whistle, and then the teams lifted off.

“No handshake?” Nova asked. That’s when it hit her, all the animosity towards the Slytherins wasn’t pretend, and the Slytherins seemed not just resentful, but downright belligerent towards everyone else. “I swear, I’m gone for a little while and everything turns to Tartarus in a hand basket.”

“It’s just a hoof, er I mean, hand shake.” Alalme offered.

“It’s not just that, it’s the way everyone behaves towards each other. That’s not Gryffindor and Slytherin out there, not the one’s I used to know. It’s more like House Lannister versus House Targaryen.”

“Who?” Mouse, and Alalme asked.

“Take too long to explain.” They all cringe at the sight of one of the players being hit in the back of the head by a bludger.

“He just shrugged that off?!” Alalme exclaimed.

“Hey, the head is the hardest bone in the human body.” Nova offered. “Why I wouldn't be a bit surprised if it’s at least a hoof thick on some of them.”

“Wow, that’s harder then a bison.” Lt Mouse offered. “Makes for a mighty small brain though.”

Down below Hagrid has joined Hermione and Ron. Hagrid was looking for the snitch with a pare of binoculars that looked like the sort one would see on a navel ship.

“Would you look at that, there’s some pegasi on the roof of a grandstand, watching.” Hagrid offered. “Oh say, one of em is a unicorn.”

“Now how’s a unicorn going to get all the way up there?” Ron asked.

“Well it’d have to be a Pegacorn.” Hermione offered.

“Harry still hasn’t found the snitch.” Ron reported. And then the snitch had been sighted. “He sees it, look at him go! Go Harry! Go!”

The Slytherin seeker had seen the snitch as well, and the two raced after it.

“Foul!” Ron, and about half the spectators shouted as Marcus Flint, the Slytherin captain slammed into Harry to keep him from catching the snitch.

“Well that’s not very sportspony of him.” Lt Mouse said as she looked at him in disbelief. Gryffindoor did at least get a free shot out of it, and Harry, to the ponies relief seemed to be alright.

“No worse then what goes on in a hoof ball game though.” Nova offered as the game went on.

“Ah, what’s going on with Mr Potter?” Alalme asked a short time later. Harry was flying about in a rather jerky fashion almost as though his broom was having some kind of clutch problem and him a new driver trying to drive a stick shift. He was all over the place, and barely hanging on as the broom bucked like a new bride. Harry was going higher, and higher, and the people on the ground began to look up at him in dismay. The broom rolled several times, jerked violently, and harry swung off, barely hanging on. Hermione grabbed Hagrid’s binoculars looking through one eye piece studying the crowd, and saw Snape. Nova had also picked out her targets.

Vip – THWACK!

Vip- THWACK!

“I’ve got him!” Said a large gray Pegasus just as Harry let go the broom.

Nova was faster, and dove down catching Harry lightly on her back. Harry was nearly as big as she was despite his small frame for a boy his age. Nova spotted the snitch, wheeled, dove, Harry reached out, and grabbed the snitch.

The crowd went nuts.

Everyone was cheering, everyone except the Slytherins who were jeering. Foul, they cried, it didn’t count they cried.

Madam Hooch called for the official role book, she and several other professors peered over the book to try to find out if it counted or not. Nova landed, and sat down causing Harry to slide off her back and land flat on his back. Snape and Quirrel lay in heaps up in the stands having been completely forgotten.

“Well, there’s nothing that says a Seeker must be on their broom.” Madam Hooch offered.

“Animal interference, if a bludger hits an animal, the game is to be halted until the animal can be removed.” Professor McGonagall offered.

“The interference rules all deal with the quaffle or snitch being removed from play.” Professor Flitwick offered.

“Oh, look here, if an animal not owned, and trained should as a result cause the quaffle to pass through a hoop it will be considered good.” McGanagal offered. “But if domestic, any aided action will be considered invalid.”

Nova was feeling glad she’d had the forethought to use a spell to camouflage her pendant, and the chain it hung from.

“True, but this is a Seeker being rescued by a pegacorn mare in the manner a foal might be rescued.” Madam Hooch offered. “There doesn’t seem to be a thing that covers this. Harry caught the Snitch in the Process of being rescued. Now the rules clearly state that he does not need to be on the broom.”

“But doesn’t it count as an assist?” McGonagall asked.

“Players are allowed to be assisted by another player in the event of a fall.” Flitwick pointed out. “There’s nothing that says the seeker can’t reach out, and grab the snitch on the way down.”

“But that pegacorn is not a player. If she was human, or any other recognized sentient being it’d be an eighth man ruling.” McGonagall offered.

“I heard, I heard.” Professor Dumbledore said as he arrived. He seemed slightly winded. He’d been in the hall when someone ran in announcing ‘Harry caught the snitch’. Good lad Dumbledore thought, and then the words ‘while riding on the back of a white pegacorn’ assailed his ears. Say what? He looked over at the small pegacorn. A large Gray pegasus bigger then Gadgull stood nearby. Dumbledor wasn’t quite sure what to think of that stallion. The stallion had a few scars indicating it’d been in some fights, and the wings though feathered, were shaped more like a thestral’s wing then a pegasus. Never the less, a mostly white pegacorn was considered a powerful ally of the forces of light, and everything deemed good. “We can’t continue without a new snitch. If there is nothing that specifically prohibits scoring in this case then there is no reason not to award the catch. Either way, the snitch has been taken out of play. - The game is ended."

“The rules say no bird or other flying animal may catch and deliver.” Madam Hooch offered. “To the best of my knowledge there is nothing that says the player can’t catch a snitch while riding on the back of an animal. Had this young mare simply flown through, or been present somewhere that didn’t interfere with the game there would have been no halt to play.” She then flew out into the center of the playing area, and placing wand to throat spoke in an amplified voice.

“On revue of the publicly documented list of rules, and faults, we can find no reason to disallow the catch.” “Gryffindor wins the match.”

Nova danced on her front hooves, trotted clear of the people, and launched into the sky. She was joined by the big gray, and then Alalme, Mouse, and several more pegasi followed, looped about the pitch a few times, and left.

Scootaloo watched them go, and let out a wistful sigh.

“If that wasn’t the darnedest thing I’ve ever seen.” Hagrid said from his place in the stands. “Can’t say I’ve ever seen flying like that either. One moment speeding past the Gryffindor team, and the next catching harry like he was a baby. Where’s Hermione?”

“She took off after Snape.” Ron said. “It looked like Snape was jinxing Harry’s broom.”

“Snape? He’d do no such thing, he’s a Hogwarts teacher.”

“Well someone else thinks he was responsible as well.” Hermione offered as she rejoined them. “Professor Snape is out cold with a welt on his head.”

“He what?” Out cold?” Hagrid asked.

“Somebody threw a rock at him.” Hermione offered tossing a rock up in the air and then catching it.

“Pity they hadn’t thrown it sooner.” Ron said. “Harry could have been killed.

“Poor Professor Quirrel fainted.” Hemione informed them. “Let’s get Harry.”

“What about the Crusaders?” Ron asked, we bringing them along too?”

“I, I don’t think they’ve completely forgiven me for telling McGonagall about that egg.” Hermione offered. “And Hagrid, you only made it worse making them think you’d eaten it.” Hagrid looked downcast. He’d heard about what Madam Hooch had said about the girls, and how they were friends to the pegacorns, but he’d not had the chance to apologize.

Somehow they managed to extract Harry from the crowd and the four went off to Hagrid’s hut to discus things. Snape trying to kill Harry among them. Hermione was also beginning to wonder if Louise might actually be a pegacorn that could transform into a person. It wold explain her attachment to the egg even though she knew it had been created by magic. She’d have to do some research. She’d asked Ron about the fallen pony, but he hadn’t gotten a good look. Harry had no comment, and there was the issue of Sweetie Belle being in two places at once, and all four girls just vanishing from the dorm room from time to time.

Ah, but lets get back to the ponies. Nova had gone back to the dorm. She transformed, got a short coil of rope, her wand, and a stop watch. She then went down to the celebration in the common room, gave the rope to Apple Bloom, and the stop watch to Sweetie Belle.

“Who we roping?” Apple Bloom asked as they headed for the showers. The girls in the quidditch team were presently showering off, and Scabbers was sitting there watching.

“Sweetie Belle, when I say go, you start timing. Apple Bloom, get ready...” The two girls watched curious as to what, or who Nova was after. Nova produced her wand, and blasted Scabbers sending him heavenward. She then blasted him several more times, the girls in the shower ducking wondering what was going on, and assuming Nova had snapped. Scabbers had no idea what was going on, thou he’d a few ideas, but couldn’t do a thing about it short of transforming. As for the crusaders, Scabbers tendency to hang out in the shower, along with the rope and timer meant one thing, there was someone what needed hogtied.

And now Nova had Scabbers clear of the girls who were in the shower. The beam of her wand flashed out spiraled white, purple, and vermilion, driving Scabbers into the far wall. Scabbers dropped, but what hit the floor was a full grown man.

“Go!”

Apple bloom rushed in, grabbing arms and legs, her rope whipping about at lightning speed. And then just as suddenly she stopped, jumped up with arms in the air.

“Three point four seconds!” Sweetie Belle shouted.

“Oh man, I’m off my best time by point three seconds.” Apple bloom complained.

“Maybe some of the boys will let you practice on them.” Scootaloo suggested from the doorway. The girls who’d been in the showers screamed, grabbed towels and ran from the room. Idda Peverell showed up a short time later followed by Professor McGonagall.

“Peter Pettigrew.” McGonagall said nearly breathless. “Never in all my days… we thought he’d been killed, and now here he is in the girls showers?”

“He was masquerading as Ron’s rat.” Nova offered. “That or he is Ron’s rat. - I’m not really sure which.”

“But how could you possibly have known?” McGanagall asked.

“I have a magical malady that makes it possible for me to sense, and see magic auras. I’ve been suspicious of Scabbers from the first night I got here. And I owe you another apology. I wasn’t just being cheeky. I, um, used you as a test subject. After that it was just a matter of cornering him.”

“Why didn’t you just say something? We teachers are good at magic you know.” McGonagall quipped.

“Excuse me, Professor McGonagall, I – being a student in first year just having come here under unusual circumstances – suspect Ron’s perverted rat, affectionately known as Mr Scabbers, to be an Animageus.” Nova offered.

“Don’t be cheeky. Just out of curiosity, what kind of wand do you have?” McGonagall asked.

“Blackthorn, with pegacorn hairs.” Nova offered.

“Hairs as in more then one?” McGanagall asked.

“My magic is a little erratic, I needed a custom build.” Nova offered. “I’ve found that in the hands of anyone else the triple core will feedback preventing them from using it to it’s full potential. It’s a one person wand.”

“You don’t say.” McGonagal replied. “Girls get Dressed. Someone get Professor Dumbledore.”

“Oh, and that cord is enchanted to prevent him from changing back.” Nova offered. “No, I didn’t do that enchantment. I have people for that.”

“You don’t say.” McGonagall replied dryly.

“There’s a crazy woman in the entry hall on a motorcycle who wants to know where Louise Magnus is!” Shouted a girl running up the steps.

“Hair like the plumage of a phoenix?” Nova asked. They answered yes.

“That’d be my mom.” Scootaloo offered.

“Well, being we are just in the way now, what say we go calm her down.” Apple Bloom offered. The four decided it might be a good idea, and went downstairs.

They found Mrs Magnus confronting several teachers, including Snape who had an ice pack on his head.

“Mom, knock it off!” Scootaloo called. Mrs Magnus cut through the teachers, and rushed to her, only to be blocked by the other girls.

“No hugs, you’ll break her!”

“Louise, I will not have you here with...”

“We just caught the dark wizard.” Nova informed her. She was a bit worried that Shimmer was about to tip off the real target. Troll Fart was standing a short distance away, and unlike Snape, showed no sign of having been struck by a rock at high velocity. Catching rat boy sure was convenient.