An Equestrian Witcher 2.0

by OblivionShadow

9: Sparring with a Princess Part 2

He opened his eyes as the teleport faded out and he moved out of the shadow of a building that had been on Luna's drawing. He could see a soft aqua mist fade from his body as he walked out and he watched as she approached him. His swords sat easily on his back and he glanced over his shoulder at the pair of weapons. He turned back to look at her and his orange eyes went over their surroundings. Sword racks full of practice weapons and racks of armor adorned the area. He paused as the mare reached him, a slight smile on her face.

“Thou made it the full distance?” She questioned.

“I did.” He replied.

He looked at her as an armor of blue leather sat on her body, obscuring much of her fur. Her sword sat in a scabbard at her shoulder and her mane was pulled up into a high binding, much like his own. Her smile morphed into a full one as she stood in front of him.

“That is an impressive feat. We are surprised at thy skill, Oblivion Shadow.” She praised.

‘It’s been some time since I heard Old Speech.’ He thought to himself before he spoke to her. “Thank you for the kind words, Luna.”

The mare motioned for him to follow her as she spun on her heel to lead him. He tested his right hind leg and found the pain to be minimal and he anticipated no issue with using it. He put it from his mind and chose to alter his fighting style slightly to make up for the slight discomfort. He lengthened his stride and drew up beside her as they walked further into the training grounds.

“We have chosen to use our actual blade instead of a practice weapon. We think it would have been insulting to use anything less to the skill that thee have already shown.” She said as he walked at her side.

The Pegasus gave her a slight nod in reply. “I appreciate the consideration, Luna. I have no preference one way or the other but if you wish to use the same weapons as we used before then I am agreeable to that.”

She nodded enthusiastically at his reply. She looked at his unarmored body and he chuckled at the look she gave him. “I am going to then assume that I will need armor as well.”

“We can take thee to the armorer to have thee fitted.” She said to him and she paused as he shook his head.

“Not needed.” He replied as he pushed just enough magic into the medallion to activate the armor and still manage to keep the magic itself hidden.

The armor shone despite the shining sun above them. The armor crawled over his body and slid into place. She nodded in understanding and led him to a practice circle and looked at him as he stopped at her side.

“Thou can lay thee saddlebags there if thou wishes. We shall allow thou time to prepare.” She said as she pointed an armored hoof to the side of the circle.

He said nothing in reply and simply moved to the indicated area and his hooves pulled the buckle from the saddlebags and he laid them under the bench. He closed his eyes as he reminded himself that this was a simply sparring match and not a life or death matter. His eyes snapped open as he reached over his shoulder to pull the steel sword out just enough to block the incoming blow. He looked over his shoulder to see a widely grinning Luna looking back at him.

“We apologize for the attack. We wished to see thou reaction. We have not seen a blade drawn so quickly afore. We missed your reach entirely. Thou have our admiration.” She said in response to the look he was giving her and she bowed her head in apology.

He looked back at her as their swords remained locked in place and he allowed a slight grin to tug at the side of his mouth. “Forgiven.” He said to her. “Though I will not be going easy on you this time. My pride will not allow it after that attack.”

Luna pulled her blade back and jumped back a few steps. She lunged at him and he spun to the side and pulled his blade free of its scabbard. The weapon slid over the side of hers and sparks flew from them. Out of the corner of his eye, he saw several ponies stop to watch as the two ponies started their match. He backflipped away from the Alicorn mare and his hooves hit the ground as she lunged after him once more. He lunged toward her and their blades collided violently and he pushed into her blade. She grimaced as her hooves began to slide backward as he pushed her. He lunged forward and sent her away from him, she fought to keep her balance and he waited for her to recover.

He had no desire to harm her and he slowed down for a moment to remind himself that she was not an enemy that he needed to kill to save himself. She recovered and looked at him as a smile went over her muzzle. She charged after him and he tapped one hoof and a golden light went over his body, encircling him. He saw a flash of uncertainty go over her face but she continued to come at him. She held her weapon up to strike at his as he stomped his hoof and a concussion wave pushed her back. She yelped as she was thrown back and he charged, intent on her. His blade knocked hers aside and his shoulder collided painfully with her chest, knocking her to the ground. She looked up at him from the ground as he slid his sword into the ground beside her head. Her eyes were wide as she stared up at him.

“Well played.” She chuckled. “We had not agreed to the use of any magic though.” She whispered.

“It was not that kind of magic.” He replied as he lowered his head to speak to her.

He backed up and held out his hoof to help her up. She took his hoof and he pulled her to her hooves. The light was still flowing over him as she looked closely at him. He reached out and pulled his sword from the ground that he had embedded it in and he backed up to give her some space. She went to pick up her fallen sword and then she turned to look at him.

“How was thou able to accomplish that without the use of magic?”

“Witchers have the ability to use what we call Signs. You have seen two of them. The one that remains active is called Quen, or shield. The one that was used to push you backward is called Aard, or push. That one is basically a telekinetic blast that can move an adversary a way to make room for a counterattack. Those are two of the five that I know how to use.” He replied to the curious look from the mare.

She regarded him for several seconds before her head came up further and a smile came to her mouth. “We are even more impressed with thee, Oblivion Shadow. Those are not magic we assume?”

“They are a form of magic that only a Witcher is able to use. We are taught how and when to use them from a young age. We cannot use magic in the more complex sense but we can use these.” He explained.

“We are impressed. Thou have many skills at thou disposal. That gives thee an edge in battle that cannot be countered.” She spun her sword in her magic for a moment before she dropped it into her hoof. “We are already greatly enjoying our sparring match.”

“The pleasure is mine.” He replied. “Shall we continue?”

The mare brought her blade in front of her muzzle as she looked at him. “Yes.”

She ran toward him and he once more spun to the side of her and his blade slid along hers. He lowered his body and his shoulder pushed into her and he shoved her back, allowing him to move away from the edge of the sparring arena. He then moved to follow her and his sword glanced over the thick leather armor of her shoulder. He made sure to use the flat of the blade as much as possible to avoid cutting the leather and possibly hurting her. Luna gave a low grunt as she leaped away from the larger stallion. He gave a slight grin as he put the gilt of his sword in his mouth and slammed both of his front hooves into the ground. Purple runes skittered across the ground in a circle and surrounded him. The mare looked at the runes for a moment before she charged toward him. He smirked as the mare crossed into the circle and her movements slowed. The runes danced over her as Yrden slowed her down and he lunged toward her, dropped his sword into his hoof, and the sword scored several hits to the leather armor. The weapon scored over her shoulders and chest. She shouted and he allowed her to leap back and evade him.

“That was more of thou Signs?”

He nodded. “That one is called Yrden. It has many names but most call it slow or fade. I use it to fight wraiths and other specters as it forces them to become more corporeal and easier to strike down.” He explained.

She panted and he could see that she was growing angrier at the clear thrashing she was receiving from him. “Thou are full of many surprised. Thou are not from here are thou?”

He barked a laugh and shook his head. “No, I am not. I am from lands outside of Equestria. I am from a place called the Northern Realms.” He did not explain further unless she chose to ask for more information. “If you wish I can explain further. Shall we?”

She nodded and the sparring match resumed as they charged each other.

He watched as Luna panted as she looked at the Pegasus. He knew that Quen was still untouched and he had replaced it a few minutes earlier and now it glowed brightly over his armor. Out of the corner of his eye, he could see the assembled soldiers all watching intently. He had seen them cringing when the Lunar Princess had been pushed back or her armor struck. Quen had continued to protect him as his hooves danced over the dirt as he evaded her attacks. Their current battle had only just paused in the thirty-minute battle that they had been continuously fighting. The armor from the Element glowed under the shield that had been protecting it and there was no damage to it to indicate that the Alicorn had scored a single hit to it.

He watched as she breathed deeply and squared her shoulders and looked at him, her eyes focused on him. He read her body and she was ready for one final attack on him and he shifted his stance slightly to ready himself for her inevitable attack. He stood up on his hind legs and his hooves gripped the weapon as he once more shifted his stance. Luna roared out a battle cry as she charged him and he shifted once more to counter her. He spun his body and met her in the middle of her charge. The mare had kept her blade in her magic to allow her to fight him easier and he was ready for her magic to try to outmaneuver him.

She had adjusted her run to his height and he could see that she was determined to have this be her final strike at him. They were a foot apart when she altered where her weapon was held and she angled it toward him. He saw surprise go over her features as he stopped and pirouetted to the side of her. He had used this maneuver on her once before but this time the spin was tighter and he angled the weapon to hit her armor once on the back, in between her wings and then he spun once more and the weapon slapped her across her flanks. She gave a loud yelp and rolled forward to avoid him striking her again. She stopped once she was sitting on the ground and she jumped to her hooves and reached back to rub her smarting flank.

Oblivion said nothing as he stopped his spin and he breathed out a breath that he had held while completing the maneuver. He saw the look of utter shock that was now covering the faces of most of the soldiers and gawkers that had assembled in the courtyard. One pony shook free of his shock and his eyes were wide and anger grew in them as he took a step forward, angling toward the Pegasus.

“How dare you injure our Princess?!” He shouted.

Oblivion turned his head to look more closely at him as the shine of several medals caught the sunlight and they gleamed back at him. He opened his mouth to speak in reply as several ponies began to raise their practice weapons, despite the looks of fear and uncertainty that were on their faces. He was about to raise his own weapon when the sound of laughter caught his ear. His ear flicked to listen as Luna laughed and rubbed her flank with one hoof. She allowed her weapon to sit on the ground beside her as she turned to the crowd.

“Tis fine. We admit defeat. Thou are a pony to be reckoned with Oblivion Shadow. We do not doubt that thou could take on the ponies that would come to our aid despite the numbers. Thou were still going easy on us we think.” She said as her laugh began to fade though her smile remained.

He gave a slight bow of his head with a smirk on his face. “Perhaps.”

He could see the soldiers staring at the spectacle in front of them. Luna was still rubbing her flank as she looked over her shoulder at the Pegasus. A smile crossed her mouth and she looked ahead and shook her head and sighed.

“Please come with us. We will treat thee to a strong coffee after thou have had a relaxing bath. We do not know about thee but we could use a wash.”

She raised her head and turned to face him as she led him away from the arena. He walked to the bench and picked up his saddlebags, slinging them across his back. He slid the sword back into its scabbard as Luna slid hers back into the scabbard at her shoulder. She glanced back to him as he walked several feet behind her and she slowed to allow him to catch up to her.

“I appreciate the consideration, Luna.”

“Return to thous duties!” She shouted back as the soldiers and other spectators stared. “We must thank thee again Oblivion Shadow for coming to spar with us.”

“It was my pleasure, Luna. And you do not need to refer to my full name, Oblivion is fine.”

She smiled and nodded as he spoke. “Follow us.”

She led him across the field and into the castle from a side entrance. He looked around them as the stone walls stretched ahead of him and he noted that the walls were smooth and gave off their own sheen in the low light. He looked ahead of them as the lights of several ponies’ spirits came into his enhanced sight. He watched as they reached the ponies and they bowed deeply to the Moon Princess as they passed by. The Pegasus watched as their eyes then fell upon him and they gave no indication of knowing who he was and why he was walking with one of their Princess’s. His hooves made no sound on the polished floor as she led him down a hallway and then stopped beside one of the doors.

“Here is the room that thou can use. It has a private bathroom adjoining that will allow thee to clean up as thou wishes. We will send a servant to guide thee to where we can sit and discuss matters.” She said to him as she motioned for him to look to the closed door.

He pushed open the door and walked halfway in before he paused and looked back at her. “Thank you, Luna.”

She nodded and turned to leave him behind. He walked into the room and his hind leg closed the door behind him with a solid push of his hoof. His eyes widened slightly at the ornate room in front of him. The room itself was easily the size of the entire first floor of the farmhouse, if not a bit larger. The bed was a four-post bed and was adorned with curtains that could be drawn to hide the one sleeping on it. The room was decorated well and the bed was covered in sheets of dark grey and blue bedding. The more he looked at it the more he could see that pieces did not have any dust or grime on them and looked to have been redone recently.

“There is no way she had this redone for my visit.” He muttered to himself as he walked further into the room.

He walked further into the room and a large chest caught his attention that sat at the end of the bed. He looked at the gleaming floor and the scent of recent staining caught his nose. The scent was faint but he could still tell that the floors had recently been stained. His gaze flitted to the rest of the room and he looked at the large window that was at the other end of the room, dark grey curtains were bundled to the side of the window itself. He looked away from the window and his eyes roved over the rest of the room. He found that there were several doors in the room and he walked up to one of them and opened it. He tilted his head slightly at the room that stretched out in front of him. Several small alcoves were lined up along the sides of the wall and they appeared to have hangers for clothing on them.

“Interesting.” He whispered and closed the door.

He moved to the next door and pushed it open to reveal a large bathroom that was wide enough for him to have turned around easily and probably laid on the floor if he so chose. He reached for his saddlebags and pulled them off his back and set them on the bathroom floor. The Witcher was silent as he looked up into the tall mirror and his armor shone back at him as he recalled it back to the medallion around his neck. The tub was off to his right and it was large enough that he could have folded his legs and laid down in it and still have plenty of room to move. He turned the knobs and the tub began to fill with clear water.

He pulled his baldric off and leaned the swords against the vanity and he sighed as he pulled his mane out of its binding and let it fall to his neck. He could feel the sweat as it had stiffened his fur, though it was not a large amount. While he had won their sparring match he had not worked himself hard enough to sweat heavily. Quen had long since faded as they had been walking and it left him a bit tired from the repeated usage. He waited for the tub to fill and he turned off the water once the water was high enough for him to be submerged. He stepped into the water and slowly laid down to allow himself to relax for a few minutes.

The water was warm enough to soothe any aches and tired muscles as he laid down. His right fetlock was going to be sore but for now, it had held up well due to him altering his movements to accommodate the sore limb. He laid in silence for several minutes before he stood and used the soap that was close by to clean himself off of any lingering sweat marks or dirt. He checked his wings and they were both cleaned and had fared well in the fight. He had thought to use them during the sparring match but he lacked the knowledge of how to properly use them effectively so he had chosen to keep them folded at his sides. Soap bubbled on the feathers and he washed them carefully and looked them over for any damaged feathers. When he found none he laid back down and cleaned himself fully, he refused to sit with Luna filthy.

He came out of the bathroom with his swords and saddlebags hovering in his magic and he laid them down on the bed. He shook himself and stretched his wings and the joints stretched and he heard a slight popping as the joints moved. The great wings folded back into their place and he walked to the chest at the end of the bed and he set his saddlebags inside of it to keep them hidden. They were still locked by his magic but he had no desire to leave them out in the open. He could still summon them to him if the need came. For now, he would leave them hidden where he could easily find them. His ears flicked as the sound of hooves caught his attention. He looked at the door and he could hear the sound of a pony breathing as a gentle knock went out and he spun to face the door. He walked slowly toward it and he could sense that it was only one pony as his ears had told him. He looked back to the bed and his magic gripped the swords that sat on the bed and they came to him and were buckled in place. He rolled his shoulders to ensure they were sitting right and he opened the door carefully. A cream-colored mare stood outside the door. She looked up at him as he was taller than she was and a polite expression covered her face as she looked at him. Her eyes were a yellow-gold color that reminded him of Derpy’s coloring, with a scroll and quill as her cutie mark.

“Oblivion Shadow.” She addressed him and he nodded. “I have been asked by Princess Luna to lead you to the balcony outside of her quarters for tea and coffee. Are you ready for me to show you the way?” She asked him.

He nodded and opened the door to allow himself to walk out and into the hall. She spun to lead him and he closed the door as he fell in behind her. Through his Spirit Sight, he knew that she was close by and they were heading in her direction. He knew that he probably could have teleported to her but at the same time, he was reminded that his magic was a fairly well-guarded secret, and most had no idea he was capable of magic at all.

He followed her and they walked past a pair of guards and toward a dark blue door at the end of the hallway. She pushed the door open and he followed behind her as she led him down a small side hallway and out onto a spacious balcony. She ensured that he was in place before she turned to face him. He could smell the coffee before they reached the table that had been set up and the smell of pastries and other treats wafted over his nose as well. The mare motioned to a black pillow and he went to it and sat down. He waited patiently as the mare bowed her head to him and turned to leave him where he was.

“Princess Luna will be with you shortly, please wait here for her.”

He nodded and she bowed her head once more and left back the way they had come. He closed his eyes as the day was drawing to a close around him. He paid little attention to the time and his ears flicked as the sound of hoof boots on stone caught his attention. He looked over his shoulder and to the side as Luna emerged from behind a curtain and approached the table where he sat.

“Thank thee for waiting.” She said to him as she approached. “We apologize for the wait.”

“No apology is needed, Luna. I have not been waiting long.” He assured her.

She came up and sat down across from him, a smile came to her muzzle as she looked over the table at him. “It is nice to hear a pony address us with our name. It has been a long time since we were addressed so casually by another that is not our sister.” She said to him.

Her magic picked up a teapot and held it aloft and he shook his head. She picked up a coffee pot and he nodded. She filled a cup with tea for her and coffee for him. Her magic set the cup in front of him and he picked it up in his hooves and sipped it as she drank her tea.

“I have no reason to address you as with anything besides your name. If it pleases you I will continue to do so.”

She nodded. “Please continue. It is pleasant to be addressed as such.”
He nodded and leaned back on his pillow. “How are you faring, after being cleansed of Nightmare Moon?”

She paused and set down her teacup. “It has been a… adjustment.” She admitted. “We are not sure how to act around our ponies. Our behavior is how we acted before our imprisonment on the moon. So nowadays it is viewed as being dated and out of touch. Though, thou appear to take it in stride.”

He chuckled quietly and looked back at her. “I have heard old speech many times before so it is not anything new to me. It was always seen as something that is done in formal situations so I have heard it before. Though I have to admit it can be a bit… dated to others who have no experience with it.”

She nodded. “We have heard others speak of it when they thought we could not hear.”

He could see that she was bothered by pony’s talking behind her back but she was trying to hide it behind a mask of indifference. He could see past her as her spirit rolled within her. So long as you are comfortable with it then others do not matter. It is easy for them to talk behind your back but it is up to you whether they are allowed to get under your skin or not.” He pointed out and she shrunk back a bit.

“They do not get to us…”

He barked a laugh. “Luna I am the Element of Spirit and that means I can see past your front.” She looked nervous for a moment as he went on. “Your feelings matter and you can choose to allow them to hurt them or you can be comfortable in your own skin and be proud of what you have done and what you will do in the future.”

“Thou speaks as if thou have been through similar things as we have in the past.” She replied.

“Each of us has our own trials.” He replied. “None of us have had an easy time of things.”

“Though have known others like us?”

“I do not know any who are like you Luna.” He replied as he shook his head. “You are a pony unto yourself with no equal. As I understood the story of what happened to you, you were not looking to harm pony’s if I recall. You were simply looking to be known for what you accomplish each night.” She nodded as a small smile tugged at her mouth. “That in itself is not a flaw, it is in fact a simple desire that is held by nearly every pony at some point in their lives. To be seen as yourself and known for the good that you have done. You were simply overwhelmed by that desire and that fact does not make you evil. I am a Witcher by trade and the medallion I wear alerts me to the presence of illusions among others. When I faced you it spoke of illusion, not evil.”

The mare gaped at him as he picked up his coffee and sipped it before setting it back down in front of him. “Thou are quite wise. Thou seem to have seen much of this world and have learned much due to that. We are thankful that thee was able to see so much and speak so plainly to us.”

“I have no reason to mislead you.”

She lowered her head slightly and looked at him. “We have a question for thee.” She waited as he motioned for her to go on. “How doth thee see us? Thou knows the beginning and the end of our story and…” She stopped as he barked another laugh.

“Your story has not ended Luna. It has merely turned a new chapter. Nightmare Moon has ended, but Luna has not. You have done what many ponies cannot do. You have seen your darkness and have moved on to become a better mare for it. It is now up to you how the rest of the story plays out.”

She gaped at him as a sheen of tears filled her eyes. “Thou are truly wiser than any other pony we have met since our return. Perhaps if we had known a pony like you before we might not have… Lost our way.” He said nothing as she breathed in and went on. “We have been told many things since our return, but none of them rang as truth. Most were pretty words meant to placate us and keep us silent. Thou speaks the truth from thous own experience and you do not wish to placate and silence us.”

“It is not my place to lie to you, Luna. Only you can choose if they speak lies or not.”

She nodded and picked her teacup up and held it out. He picked up his coffee cup and she clinked them together in a toast and smiled. “In honor of our friendship.”

He slightly bowed his head in agreement. He sipped his drink and set it down in front of him as he waited for her to speak further.

“Thou say that thou are a Witcher. May we ask what that entails?”

He nodded and he leaned slightly forward on his pillow. “A Witcher is a pony that is meant to stand between the monsters and ponies of the world. We stand between them and rid the world of the monsters that would do harm to others. If it is needed we those that can cause harm and leave those that are capable of living peacefully.” He explained.

“So thee hunt monsters?”

“We can. We are also able to remove or remedy curses if needed. There are many ways to deal with things that are hard to explain or might require a Witcher and we are there for that possibility. There are many ways to deal a monster, it’s a Witcher's job to see what the best method is.”

“We have never heard of Witchers if we are, to be honest.” She said to him and sipped her tea.

“There are not many of us remaining. I am of the School of the Wolf. Including myself, there are five of us remaining. There are other schools as well but none are creating new Witchers. We are a dying breed.”

“What other Schools remain?”

He paused for a moment. “There are none that currently teach new Witchers but I can name a few of the other Schools that I know of.” She nodded and he went on. “They are Manticore, Bear, Griffin, Viper, and Cat to name a few of them.”

“Thou speak with some sorrow. We are sorry that so few remain. This world will be lacking when they are gone.”

He gave a dismissive shrug. “In time we will vanish. But for now, we continue on our own Paths. We have what we are made to do to occupy us but that is a discussion for another time. We have a visitor.”

She started and looked around them. “Where?”

“Just inside the front door. It has been some time since we last spoke Celestia.”

Luna whirled and glared into the room beyond the curtain as the Sun Princess came forward, looking sheepish at having been found out. “Shame on thee sister. Thou art interrupting.”

“I’m sorry little sister. I had forgotten that you were having a guest today. While I am here though how was your sparring match?” She asked as she came to stand by the table.

Luna looked at the black Pegasus who shrugged. “Our match was quite the sight judging by the size of the crowd we attracted. Though that did not change the fact that we were outclassed.”

Celestia looked shocked as she regarded the Witcher as he sipped his coffee. “Really? You have no equal Luna.”

“We have met out better, dear sister.”

Celestia looked at the stallion with them as he set his cup down on the table. “Congratulations Oblivion. Perhaps we should ask you to train our guards.”

“I do not think so.” He replied as they both looked at him. “I have trained Witchers when I was younger. My training is meant to break ponies and rebuild them into a Witcher, not a guard. Those that cannot survive a Witchers training are left broken. So I will have to decline.”

He watched as Luna suppressed a laugh behind one hoof while Celestia blinked at him for several seconds before she also smiled. “Your tactics must be quite brutal if that is the case.”

“Those who see them from an outside point of view would probably view them as cruel of vicious. Another Witcher would see them for what they are and understand their purpose. They are meant to weed out those that will not survive and separate them from those that will.” He explained.

Luna chuckled. “Reminds us of our dear teacher, Starswirl.” She said and looked up at her sister, who cringed and nodded.

“Oh?” Oblivion asked as he looked between them.

The Princess of the Moon nodded. “Our dear teacher accepted nothing less than the best of us. We can recall many sleepless nights trying to accomplish our tasks. We learned much under his tutelage.”

The Sun Princess nodded as she sat down with them. “Starswirl was a bit of a taskmaster in that regard. It was never quite good enough but he did make us into the mares we are today.”

“He taught us many great things and expected greater things of us when we accomplished one feat or another,” Luna added.

“That is where Luna learned her swordsmanship. Starswirl was a pony of many trades and skills.” Celestia said.

“I had wondered who had taught you,” Oblivion said to her.

“He taught Tia as well,” Luna said to him.

“He did. Though I did not excel in the art as much as Luna did. If you are able to beat her then I stand very little chance of standing against you.” Celestia commented with a laugh.

Oblivion chuckled and looked at the Princess of the Sun. “Your student would be horrified to hear you say you’ve not skilled something.”

Luna giggled as Celestia sighed. “She thinks too highly of me at times. I am not perfect and I have made my fair share of mistakes.”

He saw her glance at the Moon Princess as she spoke. “I can guess your greatest regret.” His voice was bland as he spoke to her.

“You would be right.” She admitted. “But thanks to you and the others I have Luna back at my side once more.” Luna smiled brightly as the elder mare spoke. “Well, I have interrupted your visit for long enough. Though, I would also like to say that I was surprised that you did not wish to be recognized for creating the magic of your own.”

He shrugged. “I do not need recognition for such a small trivial thing.”

“Trivial?” Luna leaned forward as she spoke. “It would take a Unicorn of great power to create a magic that is not known already. Thou created magic as a Pegasus. That should be impossible.”

He had to admit she had a point. From what he had learned a Pegasus had enough magic to fly but not any more than that. “While, I agree that it is out of the ordinary I do not need the recognition that would come with that.”

Both mares shook their heads. “I do still wish I knew how it has come to pass that you were given access to magic,” Celestia said as she looked closely at him. “Are you certain you’re not a Unicorn?”

“I am certain.” He replied with a chuckle. “I have the bit of magic that I use to cast my Signs but that is not enough to do anything more than that with.” He admitted.

“Signs?” Celestia asked him.

“We saw a few of them during our match,” Luna said to her. “Thou is able to cast them quickly with a flick of one’s hoof.”

“They are meant to be easy and simple. We depend on them to be at our call at a moment’s notice. If they are too complex then we would not use them.” He replied.

Celestia listened carefully as he spoke and she gave a sagely nod as she spoke in reply. “Have you thought of how to use that magic beyond what you have created for it?”

“I have not tested it on any pony aside from Twilight. So I do not know how it would respond to a Pegasus or an Earth Pony.” He admitted. “A Unicorn is easy due to the magic being focused and cast from the horn itself. For the others, their magic is focused throughout the body. I have no desire or need to test it further at this time.” He said to her as he held his coffee up to his mouth.

“I’m sure in time you will find further use of it,” Celestia responded. “On that note, I will leave you to your picnic.”

The Sun Princess turned and left the pair behind. Luna waited for her sister to leave before she looked at the Witcher. “Our sister can be very nosy at times.”

He barked a laugh. “I’m sure. I’m certain her reasoning was to check on you after our match. She most likely wanted to ensure that you were unharmed.”

“We are fine. Our dignity took a slight hit but otherwise… Oh. Thou art jesting.” She said as he gave her an amused look.

“Perhaps a bit.” He said to her as he gave a slight nod. “Would you rather I didn’t?”

“Not at all. We enjoy being treated like any other pony. It is a pleasant change from our normal days. Thou do not act as though we are a Princess of Equestria.”

“I do not view you as such.” He admitted as he sipped his coffee.


“As I have mentioned I do not bend my knee to emperors. I respect that you have moved beyond your past but that does not mean I will bend my knee. I think that you would rather I treat you as any other versus as a monarch.” He explained.

“Thou art right. We are glad to have a pony treat us so simply. Thou is a pony with a good heart and we are pleased to know thee. Thy frank speech is refreshing and we are pleased to have thee with us.” She said to him as a smile crossed her muzzle as she looked at the food that was laid out between them. “Please try a few of the treats that we have gathered for thee. We had found upon our return that many things had changed, some for the worse. We were pleased to find several of our favorite treats have survived the time. Though now that we have brought thou here we see that thou chooses coffee over tea which makes us think that thee does not like sweets.”

He shrugged in reply. “There are many things that I do not think I will try that you have brought before me. But there are others that I will be trying. So long as there is not a large amount of sugar I will be happy to try them.”

Luna barked a loud laugh as he leaned back on the pillow and she looked up as the sun began to set. She sat up and her eyes flit to him, he could see nervousness go through her expression. He waited for her to speak as she cleared her throat.

“Tis growing late and we must raise the moon for the night to come forth.” She stood and her head lowered as nervousness bit at her. “Would thou care to see us raise the moon?”

He leaned forward on his pillow and nodded. “I would be pleased to see it.”

He saw her spirit grow brighter in response to him and she turned away from him and walked to the far edge of the balcony. Her wings spread slowly and his medallion began to shudder as her horn lit with her aura. He watched as the sun finished falling below the horizon and the crest of the moon raised instead. She slowly lifted up as her wings slowly beat. He felt Luna’s magic surge as she lifted the moon higher into the sky. The stars coming with it as it began to rest in the night sky. His medallion trembled violently against his chest as he watched. He lifted a hoof to stop the medallion from making any noise on its chain. He was surprised when he felt his armor start to move on the medallion. He focused on it and pushed it back into place. Luna’s hooves came back to the stone balcony and he stood up when the magic faded. Luna panted for a moment and suddenly swayed a bit. Oblivion went to her side and she leaned on his shoulder.

“Thank thee. It has been some time since we commanded the moon. It is tiring after such a long period. We thank thee for the support.” She breathed at him.

“Of course.” He replied. “It was quite a sight. Where I am from no pony controls the sun or the moon. They are able to move on their own. When I had heard that the pair of you move them I was curious how such a thing is accomplished.”

Her eyes went wide as she looked at him. “They move of their own accord?”

“Yes. They move through the skies on their own, the stars come out with the moon and then fade with the sun's light. While some stars remain in the day though they are hard to see.” He said to her. “I was shocked to hear that they did not do the same here.”

“So the moon answers to none but itself?”

“True. Same with the sun. But one thing is certain and is no different from here. Both are as loved there as they are here. Where I am from some ponies work only in the day while others are the opposite.”

“And your kind? When do Witchers work?”

“We work in all light. Our eyes are designed to show us the night as if it were the day. Through that, we can track in all lighting. We are as active in the day as we are at night. Some of the monsters that we hunt are active during the day while others are only seen at night. We do not choose, we simply follow our eyes and ears.”

She fell silent as she seemed to be considering what he had told her. “It is good to hear that there are those who view the day and the night as equals. We thank thee for telling us.”

“Of course. I have no reason to mislead you.”

She smiled and pushed off of his shoulder. “We will show thee back to thous room for the night. We insist that thee stay the night.” She added as he opened his mouth to argue. “We admit that we had a room prepared for thee ahead of time.”

“I was thinking of asking about that.”

“We had it decorated in a fashion we hoped thou would approve of.” She admitted, a smile on her muzzle.

“Very well. One moment.” He said to her as his magic gathered.

He saw her eyes go wide at the symbol that showed on his fur. A scroll and quill appeared in his magic and he jotted down a message to AJ and with a flash of magic he sent it to her. “Thank you for waiting.”

The Alicorn nodded and turned to lead him out of her quarters. He stayed with her as she led him back the way he had been brought earlier. They reached the door and her magic pushed it open for him.

“Good night Oblivion. We have enjoyed thous visit.”

“The pleasure has been mine, Luna. Thank you.” He said to her as he walked through the door and it closed quietly behind him.

He stopped by the bed as a flash of aqua magic signaled the arrival of a response to the letter he had sent earlier. He unrolled it after it had dropped into his hoof.

‘Enjoy yer sleepover. Applejack’

He looked at the paper for a moment as he considered what she had written. “What now?” He asked the air around him. “Never mind. It doesn’t matter. She’s most likely trying to tease me from afar."

Magic flowed from him as he held the note aloft and the magic burned through it at his command. He pulled his swords off his back and laid them on the bed beside him as he pulled the blankets back as well. He stretched out his wings and they moved easily as they stretched out and then folded back to his sides. He moved onto the bed and pulled the blankets up and over his back as he laid his head down on the plush pillow.

His mind wandered as he laid in silence, sleep was slow in coming as he laid in silence. ‘How long will I be here? This world is leagues different from my own. Though I admit it has its own appeal and charm. I have found a pony that I can spar with if the need comes upon me. I can use magic with Twilight if I wish to or if she asks. Though the magic itself is a new thing to handle. I would not have been shocked to have arrived here as an Earth Pony but instead, I can fly and do magic.’ His head raised as he flicked the wings under the blanket. ‘Well I could fly if I knew how.’ He admitted to himself as he laid his head back down. His musings paused as a yawn broke from him and he pushed his remaining thoughts to the back of his mind and closed his eyes to allow himself to sleep easily.


His eyes snapped open as his medallion began to violently shake on its chain. He sat up a moment later and the blanket bunched against his back. He looked to his swords as he reached out to them and slid them into their place on his back. He avoided using his magic as he moved as slowly as he dared, his ears flicked to listen intently around him. The chain that held the medallion made a soft noise as the medallion trembled. He was cautious as he turned to look around him. His wings were tight against his sides as he got out of the bed and scanned the room. The medallion still trembled and he focused on a corner of the room as it seemed to ripple.

“An illusion?” He whispered to himself.

His wings tightened against his body as his swords buckled into place and he looked away from the ripple at the corner of the room, ensuring that whoever it was thought they were getting away with it. He moved slowly away from the bed and his hooves were silent on the floor. His head spun to look at the corner and he lunged forward, slamming one hoof down on the ground. Igni roared over the ground and a high-pitched shriek sounded out as the ripple intensified. The illusion vanished after a moment's delay and he heard cursing outside the doorway. His magic threw open the door and he leaped out of the room. His nose scented the air and the scent of burned flesh caught his attention.

“Now where did you run off to?” He muttered.

His cat eyes narrowed and he could see hoof prints and he lowered his head just enough to keep them bright in his vision. He broke into a trot and followed the trail closely as his hooves kept him moving. Most likely the pony that had been in his room had been burned badly enough to affect their stride and they would not be able to go very far. Igni had a limited range but he knew that he had been more than close enough to do a fair amount of damage. He let his eyes and nose guide him as the scent of burning flesh lingered on the air. A passed by a guard and he gave the guard a sideways glance but refocused on his track.

“Sir? Are you lost?” He asked as the black Pegasus ignored him.

He heard the guard coming up to him from behind and he stopped and looked over his shoulder. He saw the guard startle at the sight of him. He knew that the look of his eyes had most likely surprised the pony and he went back to his tracking. He picked up speed as the tracks in front of him did the same, the pony's steps were growing more hurried. No doubt they knew that he was drawing closer to them. He broke into a controlled gallop and veered around a corner, he saw several ponies jump to get out of his way, dropping some of the items they were carrying. Some of the parcels dropped into his path and he jumped them easily. He saw a group of guards down one of the hallways as he cut to the left, following the trail. He dug his claws in as much as he dared on the carpet and cut down another corner and slid to a halt. A group of four guards blocked his path and they were clearly waiting for him to come around the corner.

“Stop where you are!” One of them shouted.

“Move.” He replied.

“A source has told us that we need to have a talk with you about an impending attack on Canterlot. You need to come with us.” He said to the Pegasus.

Oblivion kept his eyes trained on the trail as he raised his head to his full height. He could see that they did not intend to move and he could see that they were ready to chase him if the need came. He would not run from them, and he gathered his body and charged them. They braced as he neared them and he gathered his muscles and jumped the group. His hooves hit the ground and he continued onward. His ear flicked back and he could hear the guards had fallen in behind him and were now chasing him. He looked back and they were not in sight as he veered around a corner and he knew that he needed to be rid of them if he wanted to continue his tracking. He felt magic flow over him and he looked to his shoulder as symbols flowed over his fur and he stopped in his tracks and pushed himself against a nearby alcove and watched as the guards ran past him. He looked down at his hooves and he could see a ripple going over them.

“Interesting. This magic is showing to be more useful as time goes by.” He whispered, his voice barely heard.

He picked up the trail and moved back through the hallway. He followed them and soon found himself in front of a door. The scent of burned flesh was strongest there and he strained his ears to listen intently.

“I know he will be attacking.”

“How? Did he say that?”

“Well, no.” A voice replied. “But anypony that is willing to attack our Princess for fun is not to be trusted. And then he goes and attacks me. Though I bet he is in the dungeon by now since I told some of the guards on my way here. So they can… Ow!”

“Hold still. Your legs are burned. We have to get them treated. How in Equestria did you get burned anyway?

“He did it.” The voice yelped. “I don’t know how he did it though. He’s a Pegasus and doesn’t have a horn. I know there is something wrong with him. This just proves it. Though I really am not sure how he knew I was there.”

“What were you doing there anyway?”

“I was looking for evidence. I know he arrived with a set of saddlebags so I was going to search them for evidence.”

“You’re kidding me.”

“Second Sight you’re a great clerk for the Princess. You’re not a guard and that’s not your job. What possessed you to think this was a good idea? You have been reading way too many adventure and detective books.” A new voice commented.

“I have not been… Okay, I have read a few but still. That’s not the point. The point is that he’s dangerous and if we don’t stop him he might harm the Princesses and Canterlot.” The pony argued. “You know I’m right.”

“No, I know you’re out of your league.” The other argued. “This is ridiculous.”

“You’ll be eating humble pie when you find out I’m right. He’s already hurt me so what’s going to stop him from hurting somepony else?”

“You invaded his room!” One shouted. “What did you expect him to do?”

“My spell was perfect. There is no way a Pegasus could have sensed that I was there. I’m not sure how he knew but that just proves that there is something wrong with him.” She argued hotly.

He heard a groan from inside and he could feel aggravation as it began to bite at his nerves. His magic flared as he called on a scroll and quill and scribbled out a note to Luna. His magic flared as it was sent to the Alicorn mare. The Pegasus waited until he was certain that the mare had received it and read it before he acted further. He turned around and lined up his flanks with the door. He leaned forward onto his forelegs and gathered his hind legs to kick. He bucked the door as hard as he dared and a scream sounded out from within as the door was thrown off its hinges. He spun around as the door fell to the floor just in front of the mares within the room.

“What in Celestia's name?!” One of them screamed.

Their eyes were wide as he came to stand in the doorway, his orange eyes bright. A pale blue Earth Pony with green eyes, a white mane, and a pot and pan cutie mark stared at him. One of the mares was the one that had been leading him around earlier in the day. The third mare was staring at him, her body trembled occasionally as she watched him. He knew that she was the one who tried to spy on him by the burns on her legs. The rest of her body was green with a magnifying glass cutie mark. He lowered his head and a growl tore from him. The mares huddled together at the sight before them. He had no doubt that they were terrified, they trembled openly as he stood before them. His ears flicked as the drum of hooves caught his attention. He cast a glance over his shoulder as the guards from before appeared, no doubt they had heard the door being bucked off its hinges.

“Get away from them!” He listened carefully as the one that spokes voice trembled slightly. “You are going to the dungeons for questioning.”

He looked back over his shoulder and gave them a slight smile. “I think not.” He said to them as magic covered him and he vanished once more.

“What in Equestria! Where did he go? Lockdown the hallway!” They yelled.

He moved silently away from the door and moved to stand a few feet in front of the small group of mares. He watched as the mares all waited for the coast to clear before they slowly pulled Second Sight to her hooves.

“Come on Second Sight. Let’s get your burns treated.”

The two that were uninjured moved toward the door and were nearly in front of him when they pause to look over their shoulders to the other mare. He stepped forward and side passed to the right and moved to stand behind them, in front of the injured mare.

“You’re not going anywhere.” He said as he allowed his body to appear, the magic fading.

The mare cried out and she pitched back as he reached out and his claws gripped her mane tightly. He knew that he could have easily held her with magic but he chose to keep it hidden in the face of many ponies close by. He lifted her by her mane and she squirmed as he held her aloft her hooves no longer touching the ground.

“Who do you think you are to try to get me arrested?” He questioned.

She looked at him, her eyes angry and her mouth set. “You’re going to hurt the Princesses.” She snarled.

He nearly scoffed as her magic flared and she stared as his own magic flowed and covered her horn erasing her own magic. She stared at him as it faded and she simply hung by her mane in the air. Her eyes had narrowed to pinpricks as she glared at him.

“What makes you think I have any desire to do them harm?” He asked her, his head gave a slight tilt as he spoke.

“You’re a stranger here. You humiliated Princess Luna already and… And you’re not a normal pony.” She argued, even as her arguments fell flat.

He said nothing as she glared at him. “So you’re angry that I fought her fairly and then slapped her across the flank with the blunt of my sword?”

“Yes! Well… There’s more but I don’t have to explain anything to you.” She sneered.

“That is enough!”

Oblivion pinned his ears when he had heard the thunder of hooves from behind him. He looked over his shoulder as Luna came into the doorway, her eyes furious. He watched as she stormed into the room and came to stand at his side.

“Thou have my deepest apologies Oblivion Shadow. We did not think that thees visit would be met with such animosity. We are deeply troubled by this development and beg thy forgiveness for this development.” The Alicorn said to him, her head lowered.

“There is nothing to forgive Luna. Not even you can foresee everything that can happen at any one time.” He replied as he lowered the errant mare to the floor and set her down in front of them. “I did not think my actions would be construed so wrong. Otherwise, I would have acted differently during our match.”

“Thou were going easy on us as it was. We do not wish thou to change anything.” She replied with a growing smile.

“What will you do with this one?” He asked as he looked down at the clerk.

“What indeed,” Luna said as a growl grew under her words. “Thou have shamed us before a dear friend. One of the ponies that is responsible for returning us to thee.” The mare stared up at her, her eyes wide. “If thou would not mind, Oblivion Shadow?”

He caught the look she gave the medallion around his neck and nodded in reply. He summoned the armor and it flowed over his body. The silver armor slid into place and its luster gave off a faint light in the soft light of the room. The Witcher said nothing in reply as the burned mare stared openly.

“This is the stallion who represents the Element of Spirit. One of the Elements of Harmony. Thou tried to have him thrown into or dungeon as a traitor!” Luna thundered and the stallion felt the ground shudder at her volume. “Oblivion Shadow! Our friend is not to be thrown into our dungeons. I will not hear of such an act.”

“What is going on dear sister? I can hear your Royal Canterlot voice on the other side of the castle.” The Sun Princess said as she came into the room, her eyes falling on the black Pegasus. “Oblivion? I would have thought you would be asleep by now.” She said as she approached and drew up on the other side of her sister. Her eyes went wide at the sight of the mare in front of them. “Second Sight! What happened to you?”

Oblivion looked at the white Alicorn as he replied to her question. “I happened to her. I am the one that caused the burns to her legs.” The mare looked at him a clear question in her gaze. “She had teleported into my room and was hiding behind an illusion when I found out she was there. I used one of my Signs to attack her and she fled. I followed her and found her here after she had sent a group of guards after me, they should be standing outside.”

Celestia looked back to the door and she could see the soldiers standing outside the doorway. “By the Goddess what could you have possibly been accused of that would draw their attention?”

“This one.” He said as he pointed a hoof to the burned mare. “Believes that due to her own beliefs and the fact that I defeated Luna in out sparring match that my purpose is to harm the pair of you and perhaps all of Canterlot.” He replied.

“He would never harm us sister. Thou know this well.” Luan interjected before her elder sister could speak.

Celestia nodded at her. “You are right little sister.”

“He is our friend and the only pony who treats us as a pony rather than a monarch. We will…” Luna started to say more when her sister’s giggle stopped her.

“Calm down, Luna. Of course, I believe in him as well. The Element of Spirit would not have chosen him if he were out to harm others. There is no danger of him being held in our dungeons. I don’t think there is a cell that we have that could hold him anyway.” She said with a wide smile.

“We doubt it.” Luna agreed. “A Witcher is not meant to be held in chains.”

He considered what they had said and he shook his head in agreement. “I would not submit to a dungeon unless I choose to.”

“Thou are our friend and thou are in no danger of being placed in a cell.” The blue Alicorn said to him.

He gave a slight nod to her in thanks and the mare, Second Sight stared at each of them in turn. Celestas stepped forward and her eyes took on a harder glint as she looked down at the mare.

“You can go back to your room to rest Oblivion. I am sorry that your rest was interrupted this evening. You sparred with my sister to your victory and you must have needed to rest after that.” She said as she looked down at the mare.

“It is no trouble. I warn you that the room is actually a bit scorched and while I put out the fire it is a bit damaged.” He admitted as an afterthought.

“That would make sense since you used fire against Second Sight. No doubt it smells of smoke as well.” She said and her head gave a slight tilt as a thoughtful look spread over her face. “Please let me have a new room prepared for you.”

“It’s not a problem. I have slept among worse and the scent of smoke will not bother me.” He began but the mare looked back at him and he paused at the look she was giving him. “But if you insist I will acquiesce.”

“One moment.” She said to him. “Treats?”

Her voice carried just enough to be heard out the door if the need came and he watched as a mare came into the room and stood, waiting for instructions. The mare was a light brown with a cream-colored mane and tail with a cake for a cutie mark.

“Can you show him to the Royal Wing and have his things moved to that room? I think room Eighty-four is open and would suit him.” Celestia said to the mare, who nodded.

He watched as the mare, Treats, turned back to the door and two ponies that had been with her came forward at a look from her. “You, go to his room and check for any of his belongings.” She turned to the Unicorn. “Ensure the bedding and other items are fresh and ready for him before we arrive. Move to room eighty-four. Go.”

Both ponies scrambled back away from her and they raced out the door. She came back to the Pegasus and bowed her head and motioned for him to follow her. He fell in at her heels and she led him carefully through the small crowd and down the hall.

He looked up as they reached a set of ornate purple and white doors. She pulled a key off of her belt and used it to open the doors. “Normally a Unicorn uses their horn to open the door. I use a key but you will only need to place a hoof on the door for it to know who you are. Please place a hoof on the door.”

He put his hoof against the door and he felt a coolness go over his hoof and he fought against pulling away from the door. The mare waited for several seconds before she motioned for him to remove his hoof from the door and then follow her once more. He stayed a foot behind her to avoid stepping on her heels.

“Most of the Royal Family lives in this wing and those who the Princesses have deemed to be worthy of a room here. This room will be yours from now on. Whenever you visit it will be ready for you to use as you wish. We will ensure that it is kept clean and ready for when you arrive and wish a place to sleep for the night.” She said to him as she led him down the hall.

He managed to bite back his disagreement about the room being held for him but he chose to let it go. He had a feeling that even if he argued it would be either ignored or argued with. He looked at the doors that were set a way apart and each one was different. Various curie marks and colors adorned each door. She led him up to a set of doors that were open and she paused in front of them before she turned to face him.

“Here we are. Please give me a moment to ensure that the room has been prepared and is ready for you to rest n.” She said to him as she bowed her head to him.

He gave a slight nod and she quickly spun on her heels and trotted into the room. He reached out and his hoof gripped the door and he pushed it away from the wall, allowing him to look at it. The door was a bright silver with black borders. He looked over as the Unicorn from before came out the door and he seemed to be staring at the marking on Oblivions flank. He was about to say something about the look she was getting when the Unicorn turned to the door and pushed them both shut. His horn lit as magic covered the doors and Oblivion was forced to look away at the bright light that came from the doors.

“There.” The Unicorn breathed out.

Oblivion looked at the doors and he could see that his marking had been projected onto the doors and was now emblazoned on them. He bit back a groan and watched as the doors were once more opened and the Unicorn jumped back inside. He could hear quiet speaking as the mare issued orders and the pair of ponies rushed to finish what she commanded of them. They rushed out the door and down the hall and Treats came out to stand in front of the open doors.

“It is ready. We will finish it up properly in the morning when you are out of the room. Kindly excuse the lack of personalization of your own preferences for the time being. Please rest well.” She said as she once more bowed her head to him and he nodded back at her.

He looked into the room as the mare waited for him to go inside. He walked into the room and found his saddlebags sitting on the bed, waiting for him to move them where he wished them to be. He turned to the doors and he watched as the mare gently closed them behind him and he heard her trot away. The Witcher was silent as he turned back to the bed and his claws reached out for the strap of his saddlebags and he held them aloft as he looked around the room. It was almost a mirror image of the one he had started out with earlier so he barely was any changes. He noticed that it was slightly bigger than the first room but other than that it was the same.

“Well. This will do. It seems I’m stuck with it even beyond tonight.” He groused.

His claws gripped the strap and he leaned back on his haunches as he walked three-legged to the chest at the end of the bed and he set his saddlebags on top of it. His magic flowed over him as he used it to see if there was any pony near him or if there were any spies in the room. He found nothing and the magic faded and the aqua mist that it left behind faded to nothing. The Witcher unbuckled his swords and laid them on the bed close to where he would be laying. He moved to the head of the bed and pushed the blankets back as he slid under them. He folded his legs under him and his wings flopped to the sheets and he laid his head down as he pulled the blanket over his back. He closed his eyes and allowed his mind to go blank as he fell asleep.

He awoke to the sun coming through the windows. He opened one eye for a moment before he grumbled and turned to face the other direction. He pulled the blanket over his head and laid still under the covers of the darkness of the blanket. Minutes ticked past him and he finally sighed in defeat. He knew himself well enough to know that once he had awoken he would not be able to go back to sleep. Even though he knew that about himself that did not stop him from trying every time he did not wish to be awoken. It would be nearly impossible for him to go back to sleep now.

He growled and threw the blankets back and slid out of the bed. His hooves hit the carpet and he shook himself free of any lingering sleep. He walked into the bathroom and used the brush that had been provided to brush out his mane and tail and he looked over his wings for any damaged feathers as he replaced his mane into the tie. He spun on his heel and walked out of the bathroom and back toward the bed. He decided that remaining in Canterlot would be a waste of time and his magic flared as he started to summon a scroll to write to Luna. He allowed the magic to fade when he realized that simply sending her a note might be considered rude to the mare. He strapped his swords to his back and moved to leave the room. He pushed open one of the doors and walked out and pushed the door closed behind him. He started to head down the hall when his medallion shuddered. His ears flicked as an angry voice caught his attention.

“Damned leeches! That’s all they are. I’m just a platform for them to increase their own standing.” A male voice called out and Oblivion listened closely. “They don’t see… Me. They refuse to see the pony behind the title. All they want is what they can take from me. I’m adopted by Auntie Celestia, I’m not a Prince by blood. All they want from me is what I can give them to increase their own standing. That’s all they see.”

Oblivion moved to draw closer to the source of the voice and he drew up next to a slightly ajar door. His ears were trained forward to listen as his hooves were silent on the flooring. He looked through the slight gap in the door and his hoof carefully pushed it open wider allowing him to see the pony inside the room. His Sight showed him a pony that was being drowned in anger and sorrow. He could see other things such as malice and pain but chiefly it was sorrow and anger. The pony turned to the door and Oblivion pulled his head back swiftly.

“Oh, Blue Blood when can I meet the Princess? Will you take me to her? I would so love to meet her.” The stallion’s voice was pitched to mock the voice of a mare. “That’s all they ever ask from me.”

Oblivion leaned forward to look through the gap once more. He looked past the colors that were leeching off the pony to see what the stallion looked like past them. He saw a creamy white coat with blond hair and a golden four-point star on top of a dark blue four-pointed star. He was wearing a white collar around his neck, Oblivion assumed it was meant to be more formal. He had never seen such a collar so he was currently unsure what it was called if it even had a name.

He felt his medallion shuddering against his neck and he looked down at it. He backed up just enough to stay out of sight but he could still hear if anything was said. He watched as he realized that the medallion as not shuddering it was the Element that surrounded it. ‘Perhaps the Element knows something that I don’t? Or it can see what is lost on me?’ He thought to himself. He called on the armor and it slid easily over his body and settled into place on his body. The black Pegasus leaned forward and looked through the gap once more.

The white pony’s head had lowered until it was barely above the ground. Oblivion’s eyes widened at what he saw. Standing, or hovering, beside the pony was a dark shape. It reminded Oblivion of some of the wraiths that he had fought before. Though its current appearance was not immediately familiar to him. His eyes narrowed and his vision focused on the wraith. Its body was tall and thin and resembled a human up to its arms, which were unnaturally long and ended in wicked long claws. Its shoulders were narrow and its head was thin and gaunt. A pair of horns rose up from the top of its head and curved back till they looked like they were touching the back of its head. Oblivion suddenly realized that he knew of a creature that was similar to this one. It was called a Hym, which feeds on the guilt and pain of its victim. Oblivion himself had only seen one a few times in his life.

“What could it be feeding off of?” He whispered, his voice barely above a whisper.

As if sensing his uncertainty his armor tightened around him. The crown came forward and a piece of it covered his eyes. He pulled his head back and reached a hoof up to try to pull it out of his eyes. Everything around him went black. His head went forward as he tried to shake it off his head, and a bright light off to the side caught his attention. The aura around the white pony was pulsing. Oblivion turned his head as the colors brightened then faded out. He watched as the Wraith fed off the pony's emotions.

‘His sorrow and pain. That's what it’s feeding off. Interesting so this armor can see more clearly when needed. That pony is in danger. That thing feeds off him too much and it could prove fatal. Though if it is anything like a Hym it won’t kill its host, it might just plunge him into a constant depression to keep that food source going. Hmm. There has to be an emotion that can drive that back. Maybe not destroy it completely but slow it down. I’ve seen love do incredible things but I can’t think of a good way to bring that about. I don’t even know who this pony is. There has to be something else… Maybe a friend could help. But who in this castle would be suitable? They can’t know that they are trying to help him.’ Oblivion paused and brought his head back. His magic pulled the armor back into its normal place, as he tried to consider his options.

He suddenly sighed. “I suppose I am the best option. Though this will prove difficult since I am a novice in this aspect as well. But perhaps that is exactly what is needed.” He whispered.

He pulled his head back for a moment while he cursed silently and then moved into the doorway and pushed it open. “Pardon me.”

The white pony jumped in surprise and bumped into the window sill. He turned an outraged eye to the black Pegasus that had come into his room. “How dare you invade my space? You uncouth foal! Do you know who I am?”

“No.” Oblivion replied, his voice bland.

The stallion stopped his rage short at the blunt response. “Are you serious?”

“I truly have no idea who you are.” He replied.

He had heard his name but it did not ring any bells in his memory. The stallion seemed to be too shocked to be angry now that he was watching the Witcher closely.

“By Equestria. You serious.” He finally breathed out.

Oblivion gave a short nod. “I apologize for interrupting your ranting but I overheard you and you seemed angrier than most. I may not be a normal pony of any station for you to converse with but I have been told I know how to listen.”

“Wait.” The pony stared at him. “How much did you overhear?”

“I heard from when you said something about leeches.” He replied.

The pony lowered his head as he sighed and a groan pulled from him. “So you overheard most of it.”

Oblivion took a step further into the room and nodded in silence. “I will keep my silence if that is your concern.”

“And In exchange?” The pony asked him, his voice miserable.

“I require nothing in reply.” The pony looked at him, his gaze is suspicious. “My silence costs nothing aside from agreeing to listen to you if you wish me to. Each of us has our demons, it is not my place to blame you for yours.”

“Who are you?”

“I am Oblivion Shadow. I apologize for not introducing myself sooner."

“You’re the stallion that Aunt Luna brought here.”

“She asked me to Canterlot for a sparring match yesterday. I joined her for coffee once our match was finished.” He informed him. “And you are?”

“Oh. My apologies. I am Prince Blue Blood.” He replied and gave a slight bow of his head.

“You still seem to be troubled. If you wish we can walk and I will listen. Unless you wish to wallow in despair longer?”

Blue Blood balked at his tone for a moment before he considered the offer. “I… I think I will take you up on your offer.”

The white pony walked up to him as the Pegasus turned to leave the room. Oblivion led him out into the hallway and the Prince closed the doors behind them. He looked nervously at the Witcher and he seemed to be unsure of how to proceed than before. He gulped quietly as Oblivion turned to lead him down the hallway.

“I suppose explaining why I was so upset is a good start to our conversation?” He said, his voice low and quiet.

“I could also guess,” Oblivion replied.

The pony halted for a moment before he jumped to get back in place at the Witcher's side. “That will not be necessary.” He quickly replied as he shook his head. “But…”


“What do you think is the issue?” He asked, his voice quieter than before.

Oblivion breathed in and looked ahead of them. “You wish for a pony to treat you as though you are not a Prince of Equestria. You have created a shield over your true self as a way to protect yourself from the ones that wish to use you for their own purposes.” He began and the Prince's eyes were wide as he went on. “You used this shield to hide behind but at the same time, you crave a pony that can see past it and then has the desire to get to know the pony you truly are. But so far no pony has shown any desire to see past it.”

The Pegasus stopped after several strides when he realized that he had left the stallion several feet behind him. He stopped and looked over his shoulder to see Blue Blood staring wide-eyed at him.

“How close was I?” He asked.

Blue Blood breathed out a shaky breath as he slowly walked up to rejoin the other stallion. “You’re good.” He admitted. “I had thought I was hiding things completely. How could you know all of that? We have only known each other for less than five minutes.”

Oblivion began to walk forward once more with the Prince at his side. “I have been taught to see beyond the obvious. I am many things Blue but I am not blind. I understand what it is to try to hide who you truly are behind a mask of indifference and trying to portray yourself as unshakable. You fear ponies knowing what is hiding under your mask because you fear their rejection.” Blue Blood breathed out a breath and shook his head for a moment before the Pegasus went on. “I have spent much of my life looking behind the masks that ponies wear and see what they wished to hide from me. I look for the truth that tries to hide from those around them.”

Blue Blood stayed with him as he looked down at the floor as their hooves carried them forward. A minute ticked past him as he brought his head back up and Oblivions cast a glance at him.

“Your right.” He admitted his voice quiet. “I try to keep them back by pushing them away. It normally works perfectly but you don’t seem affected by it at all.”

“Some ponies can see beyond it while others do not get the point of it.”

“Exactly. Most of them get the point and stay away. But every now and then… They just get the point.” He growled. “They are so focused on what they want to get from me that they do not see what I want.”

Oblivion looked back over the pony's shoulder as the creature leaned over the pony and his orange eyes fell back to the white pony. The stallions were silent as they came to stand close by a balcony. Oblivion moved to stand on the balcony and Blue Blood joined him, his head lowered.

“If it helps I am willing to see beyond your mask. I am only one pony perhaps that is a start.” Oblivion said to him.

Blue Bloods' head came up as his eyes stared at the Pegasus. Oblivion watched as the creature reeled back at the sudden change in its host. “I would...” He started but he quickly looked away and the monster leaned over him once more. “Surely you have better things to do than coddle me.”

“I am not busy, Blue,” Oblivion assured him. “It would be foolish to leave you and allow you to falter as you are.” He replied. “I know of several mares who would… I recall your name now.”

“Now you recall it?” Blue said to him.

“A mare that I know had mentioned wishing to meet you.” He replied as Blue looked sour at the mention of the mare's wish. “Be at ease. She is not after your title. If I know her half as well as I think I do then she has not desired your help to spread her own desires.”

“You mean that?”

“Yes. She is called Rarity and she is the Element of Generosity.” He went on and explained the mare to the other.

Blue Blood looked hopefully for a moment before the monster leaned further over him and he seemed to rescind once more. “She no doubt is…”

“You’re tossing her aside before you give her the chance to know you.” Oblivion pointed out. “I know her enough to tell you that she will see what I do.”

The pony seemed to take heart in his words and he looked at the Pegasus. “Do you know her well enough to say that though, with confidence?”

“I know her well enough. I have only recently come to this area. She is one of the first ponies that I have met here. I have spent all of my life traveling and through that, I have learned to trust my judgment when it comes to the temperament of ponies I meet. She is a mare with class and it shows through her actions.” He looked to the white pony who was now listening intently to his words. “I have your attention now.”

Blue Blood looked down at the floor as a soft blush lit his face before it faded. “I admit that I am interested in meeting her after what you have said of her.”

“She might be the one to help you the most,” Oblivion added.

“I get the feeling that she is not in Canterlot though.”

“No. You would be right in thinking that. She is in Ponyville.” He replied and the stallion’s eyes fell back to watching the floor. “But that is not so far when you think of it.”

They stood in silence for several seconds before Blue Blood sighed and nodded in agreement. Oblivion considered how to help them speak to each other and he was reminded that he had a spell to send letters between himself and others. He found himself looking at the Unicorn and considering the merits or drawbacks of the Prince's learning of his magical ability. He breathed out a quiet sigh and raised his head to look at the pony with him.

“I am going to trust you as well with something that only your Aunts are aware of.” He said and the pony looked at him, his ears intent on what was being said. “I may be a Pegasus but allow me to show you something that will allow you to contact Rarity as well through me.”

He stood in silence as magic flowed from him and the symbol appeared on his forehead and the Prince stared as a scroll and quill appeared in the aqua aura. He stared at the mist that flowed off of the magical aura. Oblivion scrawled nonsense onto the scroll and with a flash, it vanished and then reappeared a moment later.

“I can send and receive letters from those I choose. I cannot send a letter directly to Rarity but you will be able to send it to me and I can give it to her. Through me, you will be able to contact her.” He explained.

Blue stared as the magic faded and vanished as if it had never been there. “You can use magic? You’re a Pegasus who can use magic.” He whispered out as his eyes were wide and staring.


“How is that possible?”

“I do not know.” He replied and gave a slight shrug of his shoulders.

“I can’t believe it but I have seen that it’s true.” He muttered and he looked up at the Pegasus. “Okay. I trust I should keep this to myself?”

“I would ask that you do.”

“I see.” Blue nearly stumbled over the words as he spoke. “Okay I‘m with you I suppose. My Aunts already know?”

“Yes. They have seen it first hoof.” He assured him.

Blue Blood nodded and Oblivion could see the Hym back up from the pony’s body. Oblivion looked past him to the sun and his magic flared as he brought out a new scroll and quill and wrote a note saying he would be late to Applejack. His magic faded and he waited as Blue Blood breathed in a deep breath and opened his mouth to speak. The white pony startled as a flash of magic went out as a reply came to the black Pegasus.

‘What about Apple Blooms School at noon?’

Oblivion stared at the scroll for a moment before he closed his eyes. “Shit.” He said as the scroll was incinerated in his magic. He allowed it to fade as he looked at the Prince. “Do you happen to know where Luna or Celestia is?”

“Aunt Luna should be asleep at this hour,” Blue replied, his tone cautious. “Aunt Celestia should be at court or in a meeting. Why?”

“I am needing to leave soon and I have not said my goodbyes to Luna or her elder sister. So could I trouble you to lead me to Celestia?”

Blue looked uncertain for a moment before he strengthened and nodded. “Come with me.”

The black Pegasus fell in at the other stallion’s hip as he led him forward. They weaved through the hallways and were soon at a set of doors. Blue looked over at him and motioned to the door with his horn.

“She should be in there with several members of the court. If you are going to get back to Ponyville by a certain time then you must get to train in time.”

“I do not need the train.”

“How do you plan on getting back there then?”

“I will teleport as I did yesterday.”

Blue nodded in understanding and after a moment he went still as his head slowly turned to look at the Pegasus. “What?”

“I will teleport back. I have a commitment at noon that I cannot be late for.” He explained.

“You can teleport that far?”

“Yes.” He said as he approached the doors and his hooves gripped them as he pushed them open.

“Oh no…” Blue whispered as he reached for the black Pegasus’s saddlebags.

His hooves missed as Oblivion moved forward and several sets of eyes turned to look at him. He stopped just inside the doorway and he saw the Alicorn as she looked at him, her eyes laughing.

“My apologies but I need a moment of your Princesses time.” He said to them as he moved into the room and walked behind them to reach her.

The room erupted in noise as he reached her. He waited for the noise to die down enough for her to hear him before he spoke to her. He was tempted to close their mouths as he had done with AJ before but his magic would have been on display if he did such an act.

“Please tell Luna that I greatly enjoyed my time with her but I was reminded that I have a previous commitment that I must return to Ponyville for. Can you pass that along to her? I do not wish to awaken her if she is resting.”

Celestia smiled and nodded at him. “I would be happy to.”

“You have my thanks.” He said to her as he spun on his heel to leave the room behind.

He rejoined Blue Blood outside the room and the stallion as simply staring at him as the doors were kicked close by his hind leg. “Did you really just ask her to pass along a message for you?”

“I did yes.” He said as he moved past the stunned Royal. “Keep up Blue.”

The Prince jumped to stay with him and he stayed by the Pegasus as they moved through the castle. He was working on figuring out how to allow Blue Blood to send him a letter without him being close by. He was able to send to Applejack but that was due to him have magical contact with her before. He nearly paused as he realized that all he needed to do was connect the magic through Blue Blood as he had done with the farm mare.

“We need a good spot for me to teleport without being seen. I also think I have figured out how to allow you to send me letters without them having to be delivered by somepony else.”

“The menagerie would probably work. Very few ponies go there unless they have to. This way.” Blue said as he quickened his stride and Oblivion remained at his hip.

They reached the menagerie and Blue Blood drew up into a separate section of it that was covered on all sides allowing it to be fairly private. “Here we are.”

Oblivion reached out his hoof and set it on the stallion's shoulder and his magic flowed from him and it layered over the other pony’s body and the magic began to gather against Blue's horn and he managed not to jump away as it seemed to seep into the horn. The magic faded and Oblivion set his hoof back on the ground.

“That should work. Hold the letter in your own magic and then think of me and it should connect to it and send it directly to me.”

Bleu looked at him and then to the ground and back to him. “Can you give me a scroll and quill?”

His magic flared as a scroll and quill appeared and the Prince took them from him. Blue motioned for him to follow as he moved to the side of the clearing.

“What's wrong?”

“I am trying to think of what to say to Miss Rarity but I find myself at a loss for words.” He admitted with a sheepish glance.

Oblivion barked a laugh. “Just tell her the truth. She will no doubt appreciate your honesty. Tell her what you have told me and she will no doubt understand you. Try being yourself. I know it is harder than it sounds but for a moment, put aside the shield and mask and write.”

The Prince nodded and set about his writing. Oblivion moved away to avoid seeming as though he was reading what he was writing. He was surprised to see animals that normally would avoid him coming closer. A very large cat with tawny fur and paws larger as his hooves walked slowly up to him. It was easily as large as most dogs that he had dealt with that weighed a few stones at the lightest. He remained still due to the impressive size of the cat. Normally cats hissed and backed away, their backs arched. He watched as it came up and started nosing his right foreleg. The cat sat in silence and Oblivion moved his claws out of his right hoof and scratched the cat's chin. He was even more surprised when it began to grumble a purr at the scratching. He saw Blue Blood out of the corner of his eye and he sheathed his claws just in case. The big cat rumbled still and grabbed his hoof when he stopped. The cat saw the other Unicorn and growled as it ran off.

“None of the animals are used to ponies so I’m a bit shocked that one came up to you,” Blue admitted as he joined him.

“As am I. Cats usually hate me,” Oblivion commented. “Have you finished?”

“Yes. But I admit that I am nervous that it will not be enough to explain myself to her.” He said as his magic held the letter aloft. “I hope she can what I meant when I told her that I do not wish her to know me only as a Prince of Equestria.”

Oblivion set a hoof on his shoulder in support. “Rarity is not a foolish mare. I will not ask what you spoke of to her as it is your business and hers. Give the letter a try.”

Blue Blood looked at the letter in his magic and his magic flared as it vanished and he stared as it reappeared in Oblivions aura a moment later. Oblivion nodded in approval and his magic set the letter in his saddlebag. It faded out and he addressed the Prince.

“It has been a pleasure to meet you Blue Blood. I look forward to our next conversation. Until then I need to see to my other obligations.” He said to him.

“The pleasure has been mine Oblivion. I admittedly feel better after speaking with you. I was not sure how to treat you when you found me in my quarters but I am glad that you did. Till next time.” Blue said back to him.

“Till then.”

Oblivions magic flowed over him as he focused on where he wished to teleport and his eyes closed as the magic gathered and he vanished in a flash of magic.

Blue Blood stared at where the Pegasus had once been and he found himself staring at the spot. He found himself shaking his head in disbelief at the feat that had been performed.

“Quite the feat is it not, Nephew?”

He spun on his heel to see Princess Luna walking toward him. “Yes, it was. I was not certain when he assured me that he would be able to accomplish it. I was certain he was telling tales.” He replied.

“Are you alright Nephew?” The Moon Princess suddenly asked him.

“Yes. Why?”

“Thou seem lighter. Not that we are not glad to see the change. It is good to see thou smiling as our sister had commented that thou seemed melancholy. She was worried that thou did not seem to wish for any company recently. Is there a reason for the pleasant change?”

He fell silent as he thought over the events of the morning. “I think I may have made a friend.” He admitted.

Luna smiled and she came up to stand beside him. “Oh?”

“He didn’t give the impression that he was telling me what I wanted to hear as most have before him. There was no lie.” He said to her.

“He is full of surprises. He is also one of the Elements of Harmony.”

“He is?” He asked as his eyes went wide. “I knew he mentioned that he knew one of them but I did not think he was among them.”

“He is not one to boast of it.” She admitted. “We assure you we speak the truth. He wears the Element with him at all times. If thou had known thou could have asked him to prove it.” She said with a light laugh.

He shook his head in further disbelief as the mare chuckled. “I had no idea.”

“We are glad to hear about your new friend.” She said to him. “He is our first real friend as well.”

He looked at her as she smiled warmly at him. “Thank you, Aunt Luna.”