Unknown amount of days later
I’ve lost count of how long I been in here just fight and dodging this skeleton’s sword, exhaustion doesn’t seem to be a thing here as instead of wearing me out i’ve been slowly improving my reflexes and sword skill I even ended up creating my own style. Argo has only said small tips in hopes to speed up my so called training, but the advances i’ve had on the energy front is the ability to summon it for a moment so I can do a more watered down version of my now nicknamed Blade Time after Max Payne’s Bullet Time. After using it a few times i’m starting to get the principle around it, he ability doesn’t increase my speed it increases my reaction time and comprehension of said time that way I won’t hurt myself by moving at supersonic speeds and stopping suddenly. The first time I discovered this ability was when I was running on pure adrenaline meaning my body only cared about self-preservation so it hurt me afterwards ,but now that I can make it a conscious thought I have a version that won’t injure me from using it. I watched as the skeleton gained some distance from me with a giant leap backwards to the edge of the fog ring then seemed to ready it’s dark frost covered sword for a move I was very familiar with, the skeleton swung the sword down at the ground but instead of ice barreling towards me the ice started to surround him and when he was completely surrounded the skeleton wound up there sword again and struck the ice while spinning shattering it and sending large shards of ice flying at me. I stepped back for a moment before taking a deep breath and silently activating blade time, when I activate blade time I have no outward appearance change other than my eyes changing slightly. My eyes are naturally a chocolate brown but when blade time starts a ring of glowing azure grows around them showing that the ability is enhancing my sight and other functions, the only downside of this ability is that it’s tied to my mental stamina which I can still feel here so at most I can do about nine or ten of these a day if i’m not being to strenuous with them if I am then about half of that.
The approaching shards slowed down immensely but not completely leaving me a perfect path through them and to the vulnerable skeleton, I weaved my way through the field of ice slipping past some that posed no threat while breaking any that came close with my sword until I was right in front of my enemy, I was in mid-swing when blade time ran out letting me slow back down to regular time as I finally stabbed my blade through the skull of my opponent. Slowly the skeletons body when still and from the toes up it slowly turned back to dust and when it reached its head I heard a quiet whisper at the edge of my hearing.
“Well fought” and with that final word the skull disappeared along with the body and the dust pile blew away in some invisible wind and flew deep into the fog. I took a step back from the the diminishing pile in a small show of respect and quitely smiled to myself in pride of how far i’ve come ,but the moment was cut short as the voice of Argo cut through the mist from all directions.
“ Fantastic work ,that took a bit longer then I thought but who can say no to progress. Now that you have a way of using that plasma we’re no longer in danger of dying in a multiversal explosion and that means my work here is done, before you ask you will see me again just not anytime soon” I looked towards my right to where his silhouette had appeared and listened and was about to question him on how to leave but he beat me to it.
“If your about to ask how to get out of here you don’t need to this is your mind so once I leave you will inhabit your body once again and on that note it has been a pleasure to watch you slowly grow more competent with your sword and abilities but I must be off, please improve immensely so the next time I see you I will be impressed goodbye” and with that the dark silhouette of Argo seemed to dissolve into the mist along with the sword in my hands leaving me alone in the mist wondering when I would wake back up. My question was answered as slowly my feet seemed to sink down into the ground like I was standing in quicksand, panic started to rise in me until I hs is had the thought that this is how I wake up so just grit my teeth and beared it until it was at my next and held my breath until I blacked out suddenly.
It’s been closer to a week since the battle and Michael still hasn’t woken up, it’s getting better as his breathing has evened out and he doesn’t move as much in his sleep. I need to go shopping for more supplies for the train ride to our next destination, I walked over to the door and grabbed my bag before opening the door. I had to stop for a moment to fix the strap over and around my beak then pull out a piece of paper from my bag to make a list of what we need, it took a bit of searching and digging through my bag making me think I really need to organize my bag. I heard a noise behind me but just chalked it up to Michael rolling in his sleep or something, after a few more seconds of digging I was starting to get a bit irritated so I voiced my anger.
“Where is this stupid paper, it’s in here somewhere!?” I was expecting silence to reply to me not the familiar voice of my comatose traveling companion.
“Did you check the inside pocket it could be there” I didn’t even register the tired voice of my friend at first as I reached into the inner pocket and pulled out a few folded pieces of paper and grinned in satisfaction.
“Thank you…” I had turned to thank Michael but when I saw the struggling form of my friend trying to sit up it finally sunk in that he was finally awake, the shock made me drop the paper on the floor and slowly a smile made its way onto my beak.
“Your awake!” By the time those words even left my beak I was at his side and helping him up into a sitting position, Michael turned his head slowly and looked around the room in what I guessed was confusion so I explained what happened while he was out.
“After the death of Light the rest of the mercenaries he employed either surrendered or escaped now that the one paying them was dead, there were a few casualties on our side but not too many thankfully. Quick was pretty banged up but she’s healed up now and has decided to settle down in town as a sort of guard captain with the rest of her group joining it with her, the town itself has been repaired and rebuilt pretty quickly thanks to some magic and a lot of help from everyone.” Michael seemed pleased with the outcome and was about to ask about something but flinched and settled back down.
“Careful now you may be healed but your gonna be pretty stiff and sore for a while or at least until you get walking around again” He took a deep breath and nodded to me and pulled himself back up to a sitting position, I took a few steps away so I was close enough to steady him but far enough so he could try to stand up. With a deep breath he pushed off of the bed and put his feet on the ground then stopped and looked down at his toes then turned to me.
“Triton… where are my clothes?” I stifled a snort at his confused face and settled for a grin as I pointed at a pile containing his repaired clothes sans jacket also a little gift from the town.
“You clothes were pretty much scrap after the whole battle but they were easy to replace but you jacket was a lost cause as we had no way of fixing it after it was singed, cut ,and trampled during the battle so instead the local blacksmith modified your chestpiece and made this” I pulled out Michael’s new jacket with a bit of a flourish and looked over it, the remaining clothe from his old jacket had been used as a lining for this one so the interior was black and soft while the outside had been changed from a chest piece to a more leather jacket with sleeves now. The new sleeves were just as tough as the rest of it along with having metal elbow covers for his arms, the whole thing retained its black color and had the blue stripe running from the bottom up the jacket’s arm and ending in a circle on his shoulder. I handed the jacket to Michael who slipped it on along with the rest of his clothes and in my opinion it looked pretty nice on him and judging by the smile on his face he liked it as well, he seemed to glance around the room again before looking behind me and seeing his sword in its sheath leaning against the wall next the light’s sword which reminded me.
“Oh yeah the residence town wanted us to have light’s sword and Quick didn’t want it so it along with some supplies was our reward for helping out pretty cool huh?” Michael reached down past me and grabbed his sword and strapped it to his back in a practiced motion then grabbed light’s sword and gazed at it for a moment then shrugged and just attached it to his belt.
“Hey, where’s my bag?” I perked up at his voice, silently noting that his voice was scratchy from lack of water and pointed next to the door where a hook was jutting from it and had his back hanging from it which he smiled at and grabbed and put over his shoulder.
“Let’s get out of here, i’m so tired of being tired” He turned away from me and opened the door fully waiting for me to follow which I did happily while silently feeling relief for my friends health.
The transition from being in my mind and awakening was a bit terrifying but once I blacked out everything felt back in place besides feeling a bit stiff everywhere making it pretty hard to move at first but once I got back on my feet and had Triton explain everything along with the slight shock of awakening with only my underwear I got all my stuff together and wanted to leaving this town finally and get to the train, I was sick of sleep… for now, but nonetheless I was still slightly tired so I took it slow down the stairs and out the front door into the warm sunlight which woke the rest of my body up, I stopped and stretched in the light relishing in the feeling. I heard Triton close the door behind me and I turned to him as he spoke.
“So since we’re taking the train into Equestria proper we only need some basic food or snacks which I got yesterday so today I was thinking of letting you decide on where to go but we should hurry the train leaves in a few hours so maybe one store, two if were quick so where do you want to go” The way Triton explained it made it easy to see that he was excited to move on judging by the small grin on his beak so I just laughed a bit with my dry throat reminding me to get some water in me then glanced around the town that was looking much better then when I last saw it, you could clearly tell some building were brand new and others were repaired as the bright fresh coats of paint stood out more than the faded colors of old buildings but one building in particular caught my eye. The building was called the Magical Menagerie and looked to be full of small magic trinkets judging by the front window like a toy store but the sign hanging from the door caught most of my interest it said.
“Enchantments Available inside” The idea of having magic tools was to tempting as I pointed at the colorful building and gestured him to follow which Triton did so willingly, the inside was structured like a toy store but that’s where the similarities end as the shelves were full of different glowing items ranging from simple stones and pebbles to small knives and bags, I approached the front counter with Triton trailing behind me a bit looking at the shelves. The front desk was being manned or ponyed by a brown unicorn with brown hair that was whispering quietly to two toys sitting on the counter beside him, one looked like a pony with a fish bowl on its head and was colored green and white and the other was a cow pony that was wearing a brown cowboy hat. I cleared my throat to get his attention which made him jump and look over at me and Triton who was also staring at him with slight confusion like I was so he slowly pushed the toys away from him and trotted closer to the counter to serve us.
“Umm welcome to the magical menagerie, sorry about that I was in the middle of… something anyway my name is Sandy Stones but everyone just calls me Andy what can I do for you?” I just stood there for a moment just looking at him then the toys then back to him before I just disregarded it and went to ask about the enchantments.
“What kind of enchantments can you do?” At the question the unicorn looked towards the back and lit his horn and a few moments later a list floated it was over to us and stopped in the air and opened for us to see. The first was the standard fire proof charm that would last for a year or two, a warmth charm, a cold charm, a light charm, a size increase charm, a shrink charm, a house enchantment, and a custom enchantment.
“What’s the house and custom enchantments?” My questions were immediately answered by the stallion with enthusiasm
“The house Enchantment is something I came up with, It works by first casting a waterproofing charm along with an insulation spell which includes the two heating and cooling charms and ending with a small scale space enhancing spell that will make the inside of the house larger but keep the smaller appearance” The first part sounded useful to apply to my coat but the last part where it makes the house like the tardis interested me the most as I could apply that to my bag to carry more stuff.
“The custom spell is just specific spell you can ask for and i’ll estimate a price for it, which would you like?” I looked to Triton and asked him how much money we have.
“We have about sixty bits remaining after restocking our stuff so that might be enough for one or two enchantments” I nodded to him and turned back to Andy who seemed to be staring at the toys again so I snapped my fingers to bring his attention back to me then gave my order.
“Can we have two space expanding spells on our bags, one on each?” He gave me a quizzical look before saying.
“You know that doesn’t make what’s in there lighter, right?” I nodded and he shrugger before gesturing with his hoof to hand him the bags which Triton and I did, Andy laided the bag down before us and closed his eyes and concentrated while alighting his horn. It was quiet for a few moments before a beam of yellow magic shot from his horn and onto our bags and after a few more seconds the glow faded from our bags and his horn and it was done.
“There all done, they should be about half a size bigger so that will be about thirty bits as that was one of my more taxing spells” I grabbed the bag and checked inside and nodded appreciatively at the sight of my bag being indeed bigger on the inside, while I check the bags Triton pulled the money out and gave the stallion the thirty bits and we turned to leave. The bags didn’t feel all that heavier but I didn’t have much int here besides a bit of food and a crystal, Triton seemed to regain the small bounce in his step and started to take the lead to what I hope is the train station as I don’t know this town as well as him.
“The station should be around here somewhere” I heard Triton speak to me without turning around while he scanned the area for our destination, I looked around as well as I was taller and could see more so I was easy to see the top of the train poking out over the stalls in the market area so I nudged Triton who looked at me questionaly but stopped when he saw me pointing in the direction of the train so we rushed the rest of the way there in fear of missing it. On the way many of the residence waved at us and yelled thanks which I tried to reciprocate but it was over fast as we reached the station, the train was just as gaudy from the show but it was our ticket to the griffin kingdom or at least our ticket to the boat that’s our ticket to the griffin kingdom. We walked up to the ticketstand which was being ran by another griffin but this one looked to be a different species of bird as their beak was more curved then Triton’s and looked to be much younger, The ticket master was leaning against the counter looking bored so when he saw us he just sighed and held up a talon and said.
“Buying or boarding?” I looked to Triton who started to rummage around in his bag for a moment before pulling out two tickets and saying.
“Boarding” The ticket griffin just took the tickets and waved us away so we just entered the train which appeared to be not long to depart, I saw a few familiar faces from the battle sitting in the seats we past and there were quite a few so we had to walk for a bit before coming to an empty booth so I unstrapped my swords and bag and sat down with them to my right against the wall and Triton sat across from me so he could see out of the window to our right.
“Whoa” I made a small sound at the train jerking and starting down the tracks and into edge of the desert meaning the first leg of our journey was over and who knows how many remained in our future.