When life gives you inter-reality travel.

by Crafting

chapter one: lemons.

OW ... the only word that could ever describe what I was feeling right now. I had only ever felt this much pain when waking up several years ago, and that was just an anomaly. Now it felt as if I was put through a meat pulverizer, without any safety gear. My eyes were blinded even while my eyelids were still closed. And above all that why did I have a migraine! I wanted to go back asleep, snuggle deeper into my… where are my covers? I know I kick a lot in my sleep but not feeling my BED is defiantly new. And… is that birdsong, like actual birdsong… sounded strangely like a flute, several flutes actually. My eyes were harder to open than normal, heavier, and not tired heavy either.
… why am I in a forest? Logically this makes no sense, so this must be illogical. Going off that logic the somewhat purple color of the trees makes sense, although that could just be a mineral in the area. Logically illogical also explains the fact that the underbrush is strangely gnarled, or disfigured, twisting at odd angles with stranger growths. Blue flowers with bluer leaves, I already don’t feel safe and my eyes are still the slightest bit blurry! I blink, hoping to remove the blurriness. Now that I can see I found that the strange red things I thought were somehow my covers, would make sense if someone carried my here in them, were strange round tubes… with fur.
Now that proprioception (the ability to tell where your limbs are without looking) has kicked in I know with a whole lot of doubt that my arms are where those strange tubes are. Either my arms, and thus my hands, have sprouted red fur and turned more cylindrical, or I’m hallucinating, both equally likely given the absurdity of the first option. What is weird is I’m not dreaming, otherwise I would be lucid dreaming, and this feels nothing like the inside of my mind does. If I’m Not hallucinating than the first option is true… so furry tubes where my hands should be… I can work with that, given recent advancements in prosthetic research. Now that the pain is 20% not as bad I can turn my head… only too see that the rest of my body is in a similar situation.
Brain.x86 has stopped working, close it now? >wait<… “what. How? Huh? Yes!!! That doesn't help.” my voice felt different, easier, less gurgling-vibration and more calm guitar. That talk with myself has moved me from panic to annoyance at myself for slipping into my own crazy mask again. Responding to oneself is often seen as crazy yet many people do it, including me. Now my objective wasn’t ‘see where I am’ it’s ‘what happened to my body!’, something easier said than done. Paying attention to my visual receptors again I see another color, several actually, attached where my brain says my hips are. A strange image not unlike a tattoo is there, an almost tree-like grouping of black arrows with a mainly red, although there are many shades and hues of red looking like someone put a red filter over a rainbow, heart seeming to be where the roots should be. A brown tuft of hair fell into the top of my vision. I moved my hand to brush it out of the way and got a good look at the bottom of the cylinder.
It was somewhat of an anomaly that I haven’t, and still continue not to have, screamed. What shouldn’t be possible suddenly seems to be, considering that, from what I can tell, my hand is now a hoof. Or at least that was my first thought, is obviously malleable according to my brain and the fact that I can move it, as all emotions were overloaded and my curiosity took over. It’s definitely malleable, hooves don’t bend like that so it must be something else. My other… appendage is in front of me and it looks as if they are the same. Good, nothing worse than mismatched appendages. I smirked at that mental image, A strange quadruped with mismatched limbs, not unlike discor… discord… a character from the show my… little… pony. MLP, my little pony, my little Pony, colorful… cartoon-y… horse-like… I see the top of a distinctly red muzzle when I look down.
Brain.x86 has stopped, would you like- huh. That makes sense… and doesn’t. “What? Yes. oh. um. Huh… OK… I think.” my brain is still not dead so that’s a good sign. I’m a pony. Only one quick question… HOW? I don’t care about me being a pony, that could be fun, what I do care about is how I’m a pony. Also, where am I? that seems important. Sitting up… that was too easy, I didn’t think about the body change in regards to movement until after I sat up. So, I have muscle memory for something I have never done. My mouth curls into a slight smirk, oh this Will be fun! I stand, no thought about how is necessary, I just do. I look around, I’m in a forest, a dark, damp, creepy forest. “I’m in the everfree.” If I wasn’t so afraid right now I might have cared that my voice sounded like I was, as it is I care more about getting out of here. The sky was still entirely bright blue so the sun won’t go down soon… I hope, the sun is apparently controlled by Celestia... or twilight depends on timing. I never paid much attention to the map that was drawn of Equestria, and now I regret that. If I pick a direction I could be heading deeper into the forest or toward ponyville. The best option is higher ground where I could see where to go next.
Walking is easy even as I was thinking about it. No ‘if you think of it it won’t work’ like so many stories will tell people. This is good because I can step quietly around loud sticks. So far I’m safe, although I’m taking “hope for the best, plan for the worst” to heart, quiet steps when nothing’s around and not a word spoken. I could see a small mountain, or a large hill, just up ahead. Getting there is easy, getting UP is going to be hard. The same principle is there, step in that spot, not the other spot, the problem comes when ‘the other spot’ is off to the left and straight down.
Moving on a slight incline with hooves is much different than one might expect, this is mostly because these hooves can flex and bend. I can actually grip the rocky surface I’m standing on. shaping my hoof like a spade allows me to wedge it in the small cracks and use my leg as a lever. The biggest almost-shock is that ponies are nothing like horses, horses aren’t double-jointed, nor, to my knowledge, can they actually stand like a biped. Ponies are, apparently, supper adaptable, almost as much as humans. And I can’t believe it took me this long to realize that I don’t hurt anymore!
The top of the rocky lump, bigger than I can call a hill but not as big as a mountain, I can certainly see for miles! Which I didn’t need. On the other side, in the direct path I was moving, are approximately fifty to sixty trees, then the open area where ponyville resides. Well, I did learn what I needed, what direction to go, I just wish I checked the other side of the mountain first. I looked toward the sun, shielding my eyes with my left hoof, and see that it’s precisely 11:42. I had my watch. I wish I realized that much sooner, I also wish I had a bit more, my coat or a pencil. Oh well, I need to move down the big hill.
So apparently going down is not an easy as up, as is evident by the fact I’m lying in a heap on the ground. slowly letting the pain go away. I can move, and I do, slowly moving the pain out of my limbs. Getting up off the ground hurt less than getting there, and starting the trek toward ponyville hurts less than that. The trees were less mangled out this far, the ground looked less dead and more like a natural forest. Stepping out of the forest was like dark from light, literally, I had to squint my eyes from the harsh light and tell myself it was too dark to speed up my eyes adjustment, the placebo effect is oh so useful. Once I could see, I saw a town, thatched roofs and straw bricks, and ponies. I had only myself for reference, so another creature that looked so much like the ponies from MLP confirmed where I was.
I moved toward the town almost trance-like, I wanted all the information from every inch I could see. The bricks were smooth, likely molded into the perfect shape, with expert insight of how to do it. The roofs a tight thatch, unlikely that water would get through more than a centimeter. The roads weren’t gravel like I would have expected, but instead a coarse sand with a gray tint that would be expected of gravel. The ponies themselves were almost neon with how pastel they were. Saddlebags and hats were common, clothes weren’t, but that was expected. What wasn’t expected was the sheer size of most of the ponies, many were almost twice my height, some larger. I wasn’t a stallion like I expected, I was a colt, a young pony, not yet an adult.
I stopped moving, the sheer problem of this began to sink in, I would be limited. Ponies seem both more open and more closed-minded than humans. in the show, sometimes young were given power tools, others, they weren’t allowed to have their questions answered. I pushed forward, moving around toward a less busy street. I needed to get to pinkie pie, the only one who doesn’t care about appearances… well after Zecora came over.
Sugar Cube Corner is just as the show depicts it… from afar. Up close, staying away from ponies as to not need to act “normal” in front of them, it looks like an average stone building, not counting the cupcake room on top. I moved quickly when there was a lull in ponies in and out of the shop. The inside was as expected, classic malt shop from the 1950s but as a bakery. I moved over to a booth and looked depressed, slumped over, head on table, and a flat line frown on my face. It took only a minute for the pink anomaly to show up in the opposite booth while I blinked.
“Hi!” she was just a pink and just as bouncy, even when not bouncing, as in the show.
I blinked again, my brain caching up with an object moving while no movement is observed. “Oh, hello” a slight smirk and a glint in my eyes, I sat up straighter, “how is your day?”
Her head tilted 45 degrees a larger smile appeared, “that’s what I wanted to know! You looked real glum over here! And nopony is going to be glum on my watch!”
I felt like laughing, I was talking to pinkie pie! “I knew you wouldn’t pass up the chance to make someone smile. I, however, am not glum. I simply wanted to say hello! Also, do you know where twilight is?”
She quirked a brow, “who’s twilight?”
...what. That statement meant that pinkie didn’t know who she was, why would she… “actually can you direct me to the library? I need to look something up.” that something is if there even Is a library.
“Oh yeah! it’s right down the road!” she didn’t register the subject change… no, she did, she just didn’t comment. “here let me take you!” what? Take me whe- I’m in a library. I don’t know how but I am. I look around, circular design with a detailed pony-head statue in the middle. Golden Oaks library, before Tirek.
“It’s still here?” my voice is quiet, almost scared.
“Well duh! Libraries don’t just spontaneously combust after all!”
That was too similar to what does happen. OK, new test for new info. “Do you know what the elements of harmony are?”
“Hmm” her face is scrunched up like it’s taking an actual effort to remember, “Nope!” that smile is too big for the danger that simple statement poses.
“Oh OK, thanks! I’ll just look for the book I need then!” I had to stay happy so she would leave.
“Okey dokey lokey!” and suddenly she wasn't there, an odd outline of dust was though.
Finally, I could panic. Breaths were ragged, movement was shaky, and the worst of all, my mind wasn’t calm. “okay, okay… it must be something logical… right? Twilight's… just not here yet. She’s... still with Celestia… and… Mare in the moon.” I moved quickly, going over to M and scanning the shelves. Mare on Mars, Mare of steel, Iron Mare; shouldn’t that be in I? Maybe it’s under moon? I looked. Moon bomb, Moondust, Moon fire, Moon imagined, Moon loom, Moon power, Moon tales! I reached for the book by propping myself up on the lower shelf, clamped my hoof around the book, and pulled. The book came out, faster than expected, I lost my grip and the book flew toward the floor. It hit the floor and I found myself wishing I had hands still. Too bad the only hand-like protrusions were hooves, unless… I needed a mirror.
Thankfully it was in the bathroom, up the stairs adjacent to the bedroom. I could finally see my head, still had my blue eyes, and above my eyes, right in the middle of my forehead, was a horn. It looked like someone took a short, red cotton candy cone and glued it on my head. I almost laughed at the sight, until I felt something different. As soon as it registered that, yes I did have a horn, something clicked. Proprioception found the bit it was fiddling with and my brain got all the data my nerves have been sending me. My horn wasn’t just a chunk of ivory stuck in my head, it was a complex machine, with everything needed to perform those incredible “spells.” I moved the energy I could now feel into my horn and pushed it upon the comb sitting next to the sink. It moved, easily too. I’m guessing that this body, however I got it, came pre-installed with all the muscle memory necessary for everything needed. I had… magic? No not magic, magic is the control of a powerful force outside of us, the manipulation of an outside energy like it was water and people created channels for it to flow. This wasn’t magic, no matter how much that name was used, this was an energy! Like electricity, or kinetic force, and like those, one can make it do certain things.
I moved back down to the library proper. Lifting the book in my newfound telekinesis, I opened it to the table of contents. It was so simple, like moving a muscle, you don’t need to think of all the chemical processes happening, you simply move a muscle! Mare in the Moon: Pg 127, 127, 127. 100, 120, 127! Sisters, shunned for her night, trapped in moon, longest day of thousandth year. Stories the same, so why doesn’t pinkie know of twilight? Perhaps I was right before and she isn’t here yet? But that would mean that I’m going to need to wait to get home! Or maybe not, I’m in a library, and there are plenty more around, if Star Swirl could go to EQG then why can’t I get home? shouldn't be too complex, find the “spell” use the spell. If I can’t do the spell than I’ll figure out how! Now where to start?
A Beginners guide to spells should give me the basics. Floating it over to the central table wasn’t hard, neither was opening it to the introduction. What was hard was that it said it was a “foals guide”, a guide for children. Oh well, I can watch MLP, a children's guide on “magic” shouldn’t be too hard. The first lesson is in levitation, nothing new so far it only covered what it could and couldn’t do. One thing interesting is that there is a weight and size limit, but one can expand that thru practice and training, similar to lifting weights.
The second lesson is for actual spells, levitation is the default for magic and that’s what it always goes to with no other constraints, It’s sometimes not even considered a spell. Spell is a word used to describe the bindings and paths you create for magic, I’ll call it magic for now, no other term and I don’t want to confuse the locals too much. If magic is electricity then a spell is the circuit board, with lines and paths that change the way it works. This circuit, the one it shows on the first page of lesson two, is for bending or, given enough power, breaking an object. The first part of the spell is for “locking an object relative to you” which is great! The second part bends the two, or more, parts not held in that “locking” spell thus bending, or breaking, the object. I got that all down, now what to test it on?