An Equestrian Witcher 2.0

by OblivionShadow

12: Applebuck Aftermath

Oblivion awoke with a start as the rooster crowed. The Pegasus gave a low growl of annoyance as he pushed the blanket back. He reached to the side and pulled his swords with him as he pushed himself off the bed. His hooves hit the plush rug and he raised his head to its full height as his neck popped and he tilted his head to the side to allow his muscles to flex. He shook himself as he laid his swords across his back and buckled the baldric into place. He started to move toward the door when he paused and considered that he was intending to use a large amount of magic later in the morning. He looked down at the medallion around his neck and he called on the leg guards of the armor and they flowed down his chest and legs and settled into place.

His hoof gripped the doorknob and he was greeted with Applejack, who had been reaching for the door as he opened it. The mare stared at him for several seconds before she gathered herself.

“Mornin’.” She greeted.

“Good morning Applejack.”

“How did yer meetin’ with Twilight go?”

He gave a slight shrug before he went on. “She was not sure if there was a spell that would do what I was looking for and when I mentioned that I would be making one she was busy trying to convince me that I should not try it. I have already designed the spell and I am certain that I can accomplish it with some effort. I will be casting it after I return from taking Apple Bloom to school.”

Applejack gave a slow nod before she replied to him. “All righ’ Just make sure it’s not gonna hurt ya.” She said to him as she began to turn around and her eyes fell on the guards around his forelegs. “Expectin’ it ta give ya some trouble?”

“No.” He replied easily. “This is a precaution, nothing more.” He admitted to her.

She looked at him for a moment before her eyes softened and she let him go ahead of her as he went down the stairs. He walked down the stairs and came to stand at the end of the table and he settled into his normal place. Big Mac and Apple Bloom had beat them downstairs and he gave a short bow of his head to them in greeting. The filly smiled wide as she reached for her saddlebags and pulled out a piece of paper.

“Mac. Look what Ah drew!” She said and thrust it under her other brother's nose.

Mac looked at the drawing and then to the filly as his side and then to the drawing. “Wha’ is it?”

Apple Bloom's smile seemed to grow wider as her brother took the drawing from her hoof. “It’s a Rock Troll.” She chirped happily. “Oblivion told us bout one when he came ta mah class. He taught me how ta draw one last night.”

Mac looked up from the drawing and his eyes fell on the black Pegasus. “Ya saw one o’ these fer real?”

Oblivion nodded. “Many times.”

Mac cringed as she gave the drawing back to the beaming filly. She put it back in her bag and let her saddlebags hang on the back of her chair. Applejack came down after Granny Smith up and moving and rejoined them. She went to the other side of the kitchen as the aged mare came to her own place at the table and sat down heavily. Apple Bloom looked upset as her grandmother sat down in between her and the black stallion.

“Ah wanna sit by Oblivion. Ah wanted ta talk to ‘im more.” She complained.

Oblivion leaned his head slightly forward to gain her full attention. “Apple Bloom that’s enough. We can speak when I am taking you to school.” He scolded her gently.

She looked ashamed as she nodded in response to his tone. “Ah fergot that ya were gonna walk me ta school again. Ah fergot the harvest was done.” She admitted and looked apologetically at her grandmother.

He leaned back with a nod and he turned his head to look out the window. His wings flicked against his sides as he scented the air around him. He was not sure what the scent was as he turned to look at the stove as Applejack turns to pour something into the Apple Blooms bowl. He watched as porridge was poured and he gave a slight grimace as he got up and skirted out the door as quickly as he dared. He had caught the laughing expression from Applejack and Mac as he moved. He breathed out in relief that he had managed to avoid being told to eat it anyway by Granny Smith. He had eaten well the day before and he did not need to eat anything at the moment. He moved away from the house and came to stand beside his usual tree and he leaned against it as he closed his eyes, allowing his mind to wander for the moment.

He opened one eye and then the other as he looked up at the placement of the sun to tell him the time. “Oh shit.” He muttered as he made for the house and stuck his head into the kitchen through the open upper door.

“Did the time for school change while we were working?” He asked them, his tone serious.

“No.” Apple Bloom replied.

“Ah.” He replied and moved to open the lower door. “Well, if we plan on getting you there on time then we are going to need to run there.”

Applejacks eyes went wide as she looked at the filly and made for the door and looked out. “He’s right.” She breathed. “Ah plum lost track a’ time. Ya need ta hurry.”

Apple Bloom’s eyes went wide as her elder sister confirmed the time and she leaped from her chair and ran for the now open door. His magic flared as he picked her up and she was dropped onto his back. He felt her grip his fur and mane as he spun for the gate. He jumped into a gallop and galloped for the front fence. He jumped the fence and his claws dug into the compact dirt. His wings raised slightly to keep the filly on his back and ensure she did not fall off his back.

Apple Bloom looked up from where she had buried her face in Oblivions mane and she watched as the landscape flew past her. Her brother galloped under her and she gripped his fur as tightly as she could as he moved. She could tell that they were galloping faster than she could on her own but she didn’t have any way of figuring out how fast they were going. She felt apprehension flow over her at the thought of being scolded for being late.

“Faster Oblivion! Ah can’t be late!” She shouted to him.

She heard him snort and she watched as his wings spread from his sides and began to push him forward faster. She watched as their surroundings went by faster and she wondered for a moment how he was able to go faster than he had been before. She had sat on Applejack's back when she was running and she did not seem to be able to go as fast as he was going now.

“Hold tight!” He yelled back at her and she hunkered down against his body.

Oblivion felt the filly move slightly against his back and neck as he flapped his wings just enough to give him more speed without tipping him over. The oversized appendages flapped just enough to help him run faster. He thought about flying but at the same time, he didn’t dare use the newfound knowledge he had gained from Rainbow. He didn’t dare try to fly for the first time with the filly on his back. If he fell she might be hurt as well. He looked up as the schoolhouse loomed ahead of him. His claws folded back into his hooves as he neared the front gate and he leaned back on his heels and slid to a stop at the opening in the fence. He had plunged to a stop and he reached over his shoulder to grip the filly in his hoof. He nearly threw her toward the front door of the schoolhouse but he managed to hold back. She ran for the front door but stopped dead in her tracks as he folded his wings back to his sides.

“Why are you stopping?” He shouted at her.

“Mah drawing!” She wailed.

He blinked at her for a moment before he raised his head and cast a cursory look around them for any pony. When he found they were alone his magic flared and the saddlebags flopped to the ground in front of her. She happily pulled them onto her body and made for the door.

“Best big brother ever!” She yelled as she went inside.

He gave a deep pant as he pulled air into his lungs. “Gods below.” He cursed quietly as he turned to leave the schoolhouse behind and head back to the farm.


He looked over his shoulder to find Cheerilee coming out the door and trotting toward him.

“Gods what now?” He whispered as he looked at her.

A wide smile was on her muzzle as she got close to him and stopped to regard him. “I’m amazed you got her here in time. Apple Bloom said you ran the whole way. That’s impressive considering the distance from here to Sweet Apple Acres.” She said to him.

“So long as we made it then it doesn’t matter now.” He replied.

“That’s true.” She replied. “There is something that I wished to speak with you about.”


“Yes, after you came in to speak with the foals last week they have not stopped talking about it. So I was wondering if you wouldn’t mind speaking to them again. Many of the foals would also like to see some of your swords work. Even some of the parents are interested as well. Their children have been speaking almost nonstop about Apple Blooms eldest brother. A story would be fine as well. Even I have to admit that it was quite the story to hear.”

He considered what she had said and his head gave a slight tilt. “I’m not sure what they are hoping to see when it comes to my swordsmanship.”

“I think they are just looking to see how it is done.”

“So a demonstration more or less?”

“That is the impression I got from them yes.”

“I will think it over. Do I need to give an immediate answer to you?”

“Oh no, take your time, please. I haven’t even thought of a date that it would take place on. Though if not the sword then please tell them another story. I’m sure Apple Bloom has heard several of them.”

He gave a short shake of his head. “She has heard as many as they have.”

“Really? I would have thought that they would be common bedtime stories.” She replied, surprise in her eyes.

“Gods no.” He replied with a bark of laughter. “The other stories in know off the top of my head would give her nightmares. I would need time to think of one that is foal friendly.”

“Please consider it and I will let you know if there is anything else.” She said to him.

“Very well.” He replied and she smiled and turned to back into the schoolhouse.

He gave a light sigh as she vanished not the building and he began the walk back to the farm.

He looked at the disturbed ground and he could see the spots that his claws had torn into and he rolled his eyes to the sky for a moment as he walked as much over them as was possible to obscure them. The black Pegasus broke into a trot as he reached the fence line and moved next to it until he reached the opening in the fence. He stopped as a familiar light to the side of him gave him pause. He waited as Twilight trotted toward him, a smile went over her mouth at the sight of him. Spike leaned out from his place on her back and he waved as the stallion gave a slight nod to acknowledge him.

“What happened to you?” Spike asked him.

He looked uncertain as the baby dragon pointed to his legs and he looked down. He scoffed at the dirt and dust that covered the lower portion of his forelegs and the entirety of his hind legs. He said nothing for several seconds.

“Apple Bloom was going to be later to school so I ran to get her there in time. When we reached the schoolhouse I slid to a stop to allow her to run inside in time.” He explained.

“Ah’ve never seen a pony run that fast afore.” Applejack called out as she trotted up the pair of them. “Ya cleared that fence by a foot or so. Guess all yer runnin’ round and jumpin’ fallen trees paid off.”

He backed up to allow Twilight to go through the gate first and the purple mare smiled in reply. Oblivion walked in behind her and he slowly came to walk beside her and he saw Spike look at his back and then stand up on her back. He cast a sideways look at the dragon who smiled nervously and sat back down on the mares' back. After several seconds of them walking side by side Spike opted to jump to the ground on her other side as they came to stand in front of the full barn. Mac looked at him and approached him to hoof bump the other stallion.

“Ah hear yer gonna be doin’ some fancy magic.” He drawled.

Oblivion gave him a short nod. “I suppose you could call it that. The plan is to make it so the apples will last longer and allow them to not spoil as quickly or at all.” The roan looked at him and his eyes widened. “That will give us time to move them as needed rather than move them as quickly as possible.”

“Ah have ta admit, that would be nice not ta have ta rush ‘em.” He admitted.

Oblivion jolted as a spark of aqua magic flared in front of him. He was surprised to see two letters as they now hovered in front of him, encased in his aqua aura. He quickly reached up and gripped them in his hoof to avoid his magic being seen by anypony more than those present. He looked closely at them and he could see the clear writing on the side of one of them that labeled it as being for Rarity. His magic flared as he sent it to his saddlebags for later delivery as he opened the other one.

Oblivion Shadow:

I know that I have not written to you since our meeting in Canterlot. I wanted to thank you for putting me in contact with Miss Rarity. You were right about her character and that I should allow myself to trust her as I trust you. Aunt Luna said that you were her friend as well and that I should place my trust in you as she does. It made me wonder what I had been thinking a friend really was and I came to realize that I did not have an answer for myself. I realized that I did not think of other ponies as possible friends since I considered them to all have an ulterior motive behind their meeting with me. After doing more than a fair amount of considering what I had found out and what I knew of you I have decided to call you a friend and take the chance that you are exactly what Aunt Luna told me about you. So once again, thank you.

You’re Friend,
Blue Blood

P.S. Do you recall the large cat in the menagerie that came up to you? I have spoken to the caretaker recently and he says that there is something wrong with her. He says that she has stopped eating and is even more aloof than she has ever been. I am wondering if she did not bond to you or something like that and she is now missing you. If you have the extra time I would like for you to have a look at her. Perhaps that will help her. When you have the extra time please join me in Canterlot once more and I will give you a proper tour as well. And Aunt Luna says shame on you for not saying goodbye to her personally.

Oblivion gave a slight smile as he sent the letter to his saddlebags with the other one. He turned to look at the barn full of apples and then to the ponies that were gathered with him. They backed up at a look from him and he spun to face the barn. He lowered his head slightly and focused on calling his magic to his command. He felt the magic as it began to flow over his body and he watched as it grew in power and covered the apples in front of him. His orange cat eyes narrowed and he could see each apple as it seemed to pulse with magic.

“Careful,” Twilight whispered.

His ear flicked to listen as her voice caught his attention. He dared not look away from his task and he waited as the magic covered each apple and his Spirit Sight told him that each of them was covered. He began to work the spell he had created to cover each item and lay the spell over each one. He could feel the guards on his legs as they seemed to shift on his legs and he felt them tighten around his legs. He chose to ignore its actions and move forward with what he was doing. Pressure built on his forehead and he looked down and to the side as letters from the Elder Speech began to flow over him and he looked back to his task, choosing to ignore that as well. He held the magic tightly as he felt the pressure built and then he felt it peak and he released the spell in its entirety. The force of the release knocked him back a step and he lowered his head as he breathed.

“Oblivion!” Twilight's shout caught his attention.

He flicked an ear to listen to her. He looked up from where his head hung and he watched as she came to stand close to him. He could see the concern written on her eyes as she lowered her head to be level with his own.

“Are you all right? I told you this was…”

“I’m fine.” He assured her and raised his head to his full height. “It used more force at the end than I had anticipated.”

“How do you feel?” She asked him, worry in her tone.

“I feel fine.” He assured her with an easy tone. “I don’t feel any fatigue, headaches, or anything that would tell me that I had overdone it.”

She stared openly at him. “You’re sure?” He nodded in reply. “You are the most mysterious pony I have ever met. I don’t understand it.”

“What?” He questioned.

“You can teleport to Canterlot, create a memory copying spell, and now you have created a spell that stops time. All of that without the magic draining you at all. And you’re a Pegasus!” She shouted the last few words as if they were poison in her mouth.

He could see the frustration as it flowed through her. Her spirit rolled within her as something close to anger went through her. He watched as she panted for a moment and the others drew up close to them as she closed her eyes and shook her head.

“I don’t get it.” She whispered.

“I do not know either.” He replied to her and her ears flicked to listen to him. “But for now it is not something that we can change. For now, we will focus on whether it worked or not.”

She sighed and raised her head and nodded. “Got it.”

“Well. Will find out if it worked as the days go by.” Applejack said as she stopped close by them.

“It should fade when… Hang on.” He said as his body was covered in his magic once more.

The apples were covered in the aqua aura once more and the mist that came from it began to flow over the ground around them. The black Pegasus altered the details of the spell and then released the magic once more. The mist lingered for several seconds before it faded as well.

“There. Now it will begin to age normally once it leaves the property.” He explained. “I had forgotten to give it away to begin to age once more when I designed the spell itself.”

Applejack smiled widely at him as she regarded him. “Ya are full a surprises.”

Mac nodded in agreement and held his hoof up and hoof bumped the Pegasus. Twilight stared at him once again and Spike shook his head and closed his jaw with a resounding click of teeth. Applejack went to the piles of apples and picked one up and held it in her hoof. She gave it an experimental sniff and smiled.

“Nothin’ different than normal.” She said to them. “No way that ya could tell that it had some fancy magic put on it.”

Spike reached up to her and took the apple from her hoof. He stuffed it whole into his mouth and chewed and swallowed. He looked thoughtful for a second before a wide smile crossed his face.

“Tastes fine.” He informed them. “But Oblivion should make oranges into apples. Those are the best apples.”

Applejack glared at the baby dragon as he finished speaking and Oblivion rolled his eyes to the sky and then back to the dragon among them. Twilight stared at him, her gaze showing annoyance as he looked please with his assessment of the apples. Applejack looked at him for a moment before she looked away and to the black Pegasus.

“Well. Ah promised ta show ya where the forge is in town. Now that this is taken care of Ah can take ya right to it.” Applejack drawled and patted his shoulder.

Twilight looked confused as her gaze fell on him. “Why do you need a forge?”

He looked at her and motioned to the swords on his back. “My steel sword has a crack in the blade. My swords are vital so I need to have it repaired as soon as possible.”

Applejack motioned for him to follow her and he fell in at her side as Twilight stayed at his. Her eyes fell on the baldric around his body and she looked closely at him.

“Why do you have them with you?” She asked him.

“I am a Witcher. I have my swords with me at all times.” He replied, his tone matter of fact.

“Hmm.” She made a noise back at him. “Most ponies are probably scared of them.”

“So far nopony has complained. Even if they did it will not change that they are always with me. Do you recall the fight with the wolves?” She nodded with a shudder. “Do you think I was wrong to have them then?”

She cringed at his reasoning. “That doesn’t count.” She argued. “You hadn’t been in town long enough for anypony to really notice them.”

“They have yet to have any issue with them. Even now they are barely noticed if at all.” He replied.

“Ah don’t see a problem wit’ ‘em.” Applejack added. “Ah don’t mind.”

They reached Ponyville’s center and he raised his head as a familiar scent caught his nose. The scent of burning metal and worked steel drew his focus as it reminded him of the many forges and blacksmiths shops he had been in over the course of his life. Applejack and Twilight stayed with him as his nose led him the rest of the way. He looked up as a building loomed ahead of them and he drew up the open front. He could see the forge itself had been built into the structure of the building and was well tended if the sight of it was any indication.

“Hey! Torque!” Applejack yelled from the front of the shop. “Ah have a customer fer ya!”

Oblivion bit back a cringer and simply pinned his ears at her volume and waited as the sound of movement caught his attention. A steel-gray stallion came from within the store's interior and he paused at the sight of them.

“Geez Applejack. I can hear you just fine.” He complained.

His pale blue eyes glared at her for several seconds before his mouth morphed into a smile as he came forward. He wore a pair of gloves that went over his hooves and protected his fur and skin from embers that might come from the forge itself. An anvil and hammer adorned his flank as he set a thick leather coat aside and came to join them at the front of the store.

“So I am going to guess that my new customer is the Pegasus with you.” He said to her.

“This here is mah eldest brother, Oblivion Shadow. Ah expect ya ta treat ‘im well.” She said to him. “Well, if ya don’t he’ll make sure ya regret it.” She added with a smile.

Torque looked past her and then to the Pegasus as he walked up the last couple of steps to the storefront and waited for him to speak. “Ah haven’t seen a Pegasus yer size afore. Yer a lot taller than any pony Ah ever met.” He said with a warm smile. “So I hear you need something forged?”

“Not quite.” Oblivion replied. “I need something repaired.”

“Really?” What could ya need from… me?” He said as his head slowly tilted to the side as he spotted the pair of hilts that rested over the Pegasus’s right shoulder.

Oblivion watched him closely and waited until he refocused on his face. He reached over his shoulder and pulled the steel blade free of the scabbard and laid it on the counter between them. He watched as Torque stared at the gleaming blade in front of him. The blade was forty inches of the purest folded steel. He could see the hesitation in the other pony’s body as he tried to decide whether he should each for the weapon or not. He could see the lien of markings that went down the center of the blade and Oblivion watched as his eyes scrutinized the blade and he saw the gray pony’s eyes linger on the crack.

“Well. I’ll be honest with you. I have never seen a blade like this before.” He admitted. “Who crafted it?”

“A master weaponsmith from where I am from. I have no way of getting in touch with him to repair it.” The Pegasus explained.

“I have to be honest with you.” Torque said as a sheepish expression crossed his face. “A weapon like this needs a master’s touch. How long would it take you to get home to have it repaired?”

“Months at least,” Oblivion replied. ‘I don’t even know how I got here.’

Torque gave a visible cringe. “That far?” Oblivion nodded. “Okay. Are you okay with me handling it? I admit I haven’t dealt with a weapon of this quality before. I would rather not take it and foul the weapon if I can’t actually handle it.”

The black Pegasus nodded. “You can handle it easily enough. Just don’t make the damage any worse than what it is. I’m sure you will be careful with it but I do ask you to be cautious with it.” He said and Torque began to reach for it as a thought came to him. “Also be careful not to strike it against anything.”

“What?” Torque asked as he pulled his hoof back.

“There are runes buried with the blade.” He replied and he saw Twilight grin out of the corner of his eye.

“How old is the sword?” Torque questioned.

“Runes are used frequently where I am from. That sword is about two months old to answer your question. I implanted the runes shortly before I traveled here.”

“Okay. I’ll be careful with it. Give me a few minutes with it.” Torque said and he reached for the hilt of the blade and took it with him as he moved to the back of the shop and out of sight.

Oblivion leaned back on his haunches and waited as the mares and baby dragon with him relaxed as well. Applejack looked at him and he could see a question on her face as she looked from the forge and then back to him.

“Can’t ya just repair it with magic?” She asked him.

He saw Twilight look at him, curiosity in her eyes. “Gods no.” He barked. “I know nothing about how the weapon was damaged. I also know next to nothing about how it was forged. I will not use magic on something that I do not have a rudimentary understanding of its creation. It was not created with magic but with blood and sweat from a master weaponsmith.”

She nodded as he spoke and looked back to the back of the forge as they waited. A few minutes went past them and he leaned heavier on his hind legs and waited.

“What broke it?” Twilight questioned suddenly. “I know you said you were not sure what did the damage but surely you have an idea.”

Oblivion thought back to the times that he had used the weapon. ‘The fight with Nightmare Moon, no that was fine. The practice in the forest? No. The sparring with… Luna…’ He felt a jolt go through him as he realized when it had likely been damaged. He closed his eyes and slowly put his head back for several seconds before a snort broke from him. After several more seconds, he scrubbed his face with his hoof.

“Damnit.” He cursed.

“What?” Twilight pressed.

“It’s my own fault.” He replied and they all looked at him. “I used it during the sparring match with Luna. I used it differently than I would have normally due to the injury to my leg before the match. I was using my other leg as a lead and that put me in a style that I was not used to. Damn it all.”

“Oops?” Spike commented and shrugged his shoulders.

“What?” He asked, his head giving a slight tilt at the dragon's comment.

“It means a mistake.” Twilight supplied.

“Oh.” He replied and gave a wry chuckle. “Yes. A very foolish oops.”

“So ya broke it when ya were sparrin’ with Princess Luna?” Applejack asked.

“Yes.” He closed his eyes and gave a slight sigh at his own foolishness. “I had to alter my style due to the lingering injury to my leg. Luna’s style is similar to one of the older styles that the School of the Cat used. I was not moving in a way that I was…”

“Holy Faust!”

All of them looked to the shop as Torque yelled and came into view as he bolted around the corner. Oblivion could see that his mane was singed and his face had been blackened. His eyes were wide as he looked back into the alcove he had been in and back at the blade. Oblivion assumed that is what he was looking at as he shook himself.

“You were not kidding about that runes in that thing. I barely tapped it.” He groused as he came toward them.

“I did warn you not to strike it.” Oblivion chuckled.

“I tapped it. With a hoof, not a hammer.” The forge pony replied. “Just how sensitive is it?”

“Apparently it’s more sensitive than I thought it was. The last time some pony else handled it, it had been blunted and suppressed by magic.” Oblivion explained and the stallion listened as he went on. “But to have it examined it needs to be unaltered.”

“That’s true.” Torque admitted as he looked back over his shoulder for several seconds. “That weapon is a lot more sensitive than I thought it would be. I will tell you honestly. That sword is way too advanced for me to handle. There is a forge in Canterlot Castle that is used by the Royals. It’s far too advanced for me and the runes need special handling.”

“I was afraid of that.” Oblivion groaned.

Torque looked apologetic at him before he glanced back over his shoulder. “Okay. Now I need to get it back to you.” He said as he backed up and moved back to the alcove.

Oblivion watched as he came back around the corner with the weapon held in front of him by a pair of tongs that would have normally been used for reaching into the heat of the forge. Oblivion raised one eyebrow at the sight and the forge pony set the blade back on the counter in front of him.

“You were that worried about touching it?” Oblivion asked.

“That thing could have killed me.” Torque pointed out. “So I am reasonably cautious with it. But to answer the question, yes.”

Oblivion barked a laugh and picked up the weapon and slid it back into the scabbard at his shoulder. He looked forward and Torques eyes had gone wide and he was now staring at the other hilt on his back. His eyes darted to the Pegasus’s face and then back to the hilt.

“What about that one?” Torque asked, his voice was almost a whisper.

The black Pegasus looked at him for a moment before he replied. “It’s the second blade I carry. I carry two of them at all times. The steel is to fight ponies. What you are looking at is the silver sword that is used for monsters.”

“Can I see it?” Torque asked. “I have never seen anything like it. Even from here, I can tell that something entirely different than the one I just handled.”

He looked closely at the pony and he watched as his eyes remained glued to the hilt over his shoulder. Oblivion reached back and slid the full scabbard off the baldric and laid it on the counter between them. The steel gray pony stared at the sliver scabbard and then to the hilt with its ornate dual wolf head pommel. He saw him swallow nervously as he reached for the hilt, but his hoof paused in midair as an afterthought.

“Is this one as dangerous as the first?” He questioned.

The black Pegasus barked a laugh. “Even more so than the first.”

Torque looked even more nervous but his hoof fell gently on the hilt despite his nerves. His other hoof went to the scabbard and he gripped it as he slowly slid the silver blade out and into the sunlight. His eyes went wide as he pulled it free and he held it aloft in front of himself. The blade was the same length as the prior weapon but it was a bit thinner and the runes that were buried in the blade glowed brightly down the center of the blade. The silver glow seemed bright despite the sunlight that was beating down on them. The sword was clearly a very specialized weapon with a specific purpose in mind when it was crafted. Torque seemed to know, instinctively, that it was meant to be handled with great care and even then only handled by a select few. He laid it gently on the counter as he looked it over.

“The same pony made this?” He asked.

“No. This one was made by a master smith. I had to travel even further to find a smith that would be able to forge it to my tastes.” He explained.

The Pegasus watched the weapon closely as it sat between them. He could see Spike leaning over Twilights back to get a better look. The baby dragon was quiet as his eyes went over the blade.

“Wow.” He said, his voice was quiet.

“Ya said it Spike.” Applejack agreed. “Ah can see why ya keep it hidden on yer back. Ah don’t think Ah’ve ever seen this one.”

“I do not think you have.” Oblivion agreed.

“You use this?” Twilight whispered as she looked from the blade to him.

He looked at her and nodded after a moment’s delay. “Yes. Why are you whispering?”

She startled and looked away from him. “I didn’t even realize I was.”

“You’ve seen it before.” He said to her and she nodded.

“I have but not up close.” She reasoned.

“That’s true.”

He looked back to the weapon and he could see that the forge pony was still enthralled by it. He reached out and his hoof gripped the hilt and he slid it back into the silver scabbard. He slid it back into place on his back once it was back within the protection of the scabbard. The three ponies watched it vanish into the scabbard and their eyes followed it onto his back. The Pegasus caught the disappointed look from the other stallion and he bit back a smug look.

“How much would it cost to have a steel sword like this one made?” He asked him.

Torque looked at him for several seconds and then a worried look crossed his face. He glanced at the weapon on Oblivion’s back and the Pegasus realized what had him looking so concerned.

“I mean a plain blade in this one’s design. Just a simple blade with no runes or any enhancements.” He clarified.

Torque looked relieved at the clarification and he looked over his shoulder toward the forge. “Forty-inch blade, including the hilt?” Oblivion nodded. “Well. I have plenty of materials and so forth. It would take me about two to three days to complete it and it would cost about…” He put a hoof to his chin as he thought it over. “About thirty-five bits.”

Oblivion nodded and opened his mouth to speak when the orange mare at his side nudged his leg.

“What could ya possibly need the third sword for?” She asked him.

“I would rather not use my main sword for simple sparring or demonstrations. I plan on avoiding the chance of ruining it when I can have a plain weapon made to stand in for it.” He replied. “I can use the plain one for simple jobs and avoid damaging my main weapons.”

“That’s a good point.” She agreed. “Usin’ that fancy blade a yers might be a problem.”

Oblivion said nothing for several seconds as he looked back at the forge pony. “I’ll put in a request for the blade when I am able and ready for it.”

Torque nodded in understanding and the black Pegasus spun on his heel and led them away from the forge. Twilight was at his side as he paused and looked back as he realized that Applejack was not at his side. The mare was a few steps behind him and she rejoined them and a smile tugged ta her mouth as she motioned for him to stay with her.

“Ah should get ya to the bank as well. Need ta set up an account fer ya ta put yer bits.” She said to him as he walked with her. “They have banks where yer from?”

“Yes. Though I rarely use them.”

“Any reason why not?” Twilight asked him.

“I travel over large distances so the money usually sits and over time they come to the conclusion that I am dead since they have not seen me in a while. When there is no movement on the account they tend to take it for themselves, despite that not being entirely legal.”

The mares nodded as he explained and the orange mare led him through town toward a large building that stood just behind city hall. His thoughts went to the crowns he knew were sitting in his saddlebags and he found himself wondering if all the crowns he had were with him. He had noticed that the items that he had stored with Dandelion were now in his saddlebags and that made him curious if the money he had in the banks was with him as well. If it was then he was curious if he would be able to convert it into the currency of this world.

“Is it possible for this bank to convert currency?” He asked the mares with him.

Both of them paused as they seemed to be considering what he had asked. Twilight looked at him as he paused with them.

“I know the largest bank in Canterlot can convert currency but I am not sure about the branches of the bank that are in the smaller towns and cities.” She replied.

“Ah think they can.” Applejack said as she tapped her chin with her hoof. “Ya have coin ta change?”

“I have the coin from the Northern Realms that I am curious if I can exchange.” He explained.

“That’s a fair question actually,” Twilight said to him. “We can ask at least. The worst that can happen is they say no and you would need to go to Canterlot for it.”

Twilight looked closely at him before she seemed to conclude.

“Do you have any coins with you?” She asked.

Oblivion nearly cursed as he shook his head. “I don’t. I did not know we would be coming to the bank.”

Twilight sighed and looked at him. “I’m guessing you need to have a few of them for them to look at?” Oblivion nodded in agreement. “If I can hide you for a moment can you teleport back to get them and back in a couple of seconds?”

He quickly nodded as he understood her plan. “Give me five seconds.”

Twilights horn lit as a shield went over him and he could see that he was obscured from view and his own magic flowed as he teleported.

Twilight kept the spell going as he vanished. She looked at Applejack who was watching around them as a couple of ponies stopped to look at the small dome of magic. She looked closely as a slight change in the size of the shield told her that the stallion had come back. She squinted as she looked into the dome and he was standing there waiting for the shield to go down. She dropped the shield and the Pegasus gave her a thankful nod as she smiled at the sight of his saddlebags. The Unicorn chuckled at the sight of them and she fell in at his side once more.

The group of them went back into motion and they were soon at the front doors to the bank and the doors were pushed open by Twilights magenta aura. They stood in line and waited for one of the tellers to motion for them to approach. The mares at his side were quiet as Spike sighed in boredom. A brown pony motioned for them to come to him and Applejack smiled as they neared the teller.

“Hey Caramel.” She greeted and the pony smiled in reply. “This here is Oblivion Shadow. ‘E works fer me and mah family. We need ta make an account fer him. Can ya exchange currency here?”

“The brown pony nodded. Oblivion stepped forward and waited to be addressed. “Full name is Oblivion Shadow. Typical spelling?” Oblivion nodded. “Profession?”

“Farmhand.” Applejack jumped in before the black pony could respond.


Oblivion looked at him. “Is that necessary?”

The pony looked up at him. “Well it's not required but it helps with…”

“Then I will keep that to myself.” The black stallion replied.

Caramel looked uncomfortable but said nothing. “How long have you worked there?”

“Three weeks to a month.”

“Address is Sweet Apple Acres?” Another nod. “All right, that is started up and ready for use. You can add funds to it when you are ready.” He looked to the Pegasus and waited for him to nod in understanding. “You mentioned the possible conversion of currency?”

Oblivion watched into his saddlebag and a few coins came to rest in his hoof and he pulled them from the saddlebag and set them on the counter. The golden coins shone in light of the lights of the buildings and Caramel stared at them for several seconds. He reached out and picked one of them up and his head gave a slight tilt at the difference between the Crown and the bits he knew.

“I can tell that this is heavier than the Bits we use.” Caramel said to him. “Would it be alright if I took one of them and weighed it against a typical Bit and then did a quick metallurgy on it?”

Oblivion gave a quick nod and leaned back on his heels. He watched as the other stallion took the crown and vanished into the back rooms. He closed his eyes for a moment as he considered the chances of it being more or less than the Bits that were used in this kingdom.

“I had not thought about whether the weight would be a drastic difference or not.” He said and the mares listened as he went on. “I haven’t handled a single bit aside from the small pouches that you gave me that one time.”

Applejack nodded. “Ah’ll deposit yer salary this week. Granny wants ta give ya a bonus fer helping the ponies as ya did.”

He opened his mouth to protest but at the same time he bit back his words and fell silent. He knew enough about the family to know that some fights were not worth fighting. “Very well.”

Twilight giggled behind her hoof. “Decided not to fight that fight?”

“I know when an argument is not going to go anywhere. She and I would go around in circles and nothing would change. I have no desire to teach myself a lesson in futility.” He replied as the brown pony returned.

“Ya okay Caramel?” Applejack asked him as the pony looked a bit shocked.

“I’m okay. Just a bit shocked.” He admitted and set the coin back on the counter with the others. “Did you know that this is pure gold?” He asked as his gaze came back into focus.

Applejack and Twilight both spun to look closely at him. The black Pegasus looked at the brown pony and nodded. “Of course I am aware. I didn’t accept any other payment.”

Caramel gripped the counter in response to the information. He recovered after a few seconds and released the counter. “So, in your village, you were paid in gold?”

Oblivion’s orange eyes stayed on him for a moment before he replied. “I traveled typically. I was never in one place for very long but yes I was paid in gold or an equivalent item.”

“Okay. So I did a check on the weight and metal and the value of this in bits is pretty high.” Caramel explained and the Pegasus waited for him to go on. “The conversion rate for this to between forty-eight and fifty bits to each one of these. We would need to melt it down to get the full metallurgy but I would bet that it would be closer to fifty bits each.”

Applejack looked at him, her eyes had widened just enough to show her surprise. “How many of those do ya have?”

He was silent as he considered what to tell her. If he was right and his saddlebags held all the things that he had been storing in various places were now with him then the number of crowns would be quite high. The Pegasus looked away from them as though he were thinking but in reality, he was not thinking of the amount so much as he was considering his options about what to tell them. If he had all of the crowns he had stored in a bank in Toussaint then the amount would be well over five to ten thousand crowns. Which would be a huge amount to ask the bank to convert and in doing so he would destabilize the area and most likely Canterlot if they needed to call on help from them to convert as many as he needed.

“A couple thousand.” He lied and waited as the others stared at him. “I use them to repair armor and…” He paused as the pony behind the counter wavered.

Caramel wavered and then his eyes rolled back in his head and Oblivion lunged forward to try to grab his fur to keep him from hitting the ground. He missed as the pony fell backward instead of straight down or forward. Applejack lunged with him and her hooves were on the counter as the other tellers turned to stare at the stallion.

“Caramel!” She shouted and went around the counter to check on the fallen pony.

The orange mare fanned his face as she lifted his head to check if he was hurt further than fainting. Spike leaped from Twilights back and went around the counter to check on him as well.

“Gods below.” Oblivion cursed as he craned his neck to look over the counter. “Is he all right?”

“Ah think so.” Applejack said as she motioned for the other tellers to let her handle the fainted pony. “Ah think ya shocked him mighty hard.” She replied.

She scooted back as the pony began to stir and she slowly helped him to sit up. Caramel rubbed the back of his head for several seconds before he began to scan the counter and his eyes fell on Oblivion and Twilight. He blinked furiously and then gave a low groan.

“Easy Pardner.” Applejack said to him as he slowly got to his hooves.

“I’m okay.” He assured her, as he looked at the Pegasus. “Were you serious about that amount?”

“If you’re going to pass out again then no.” Oblivion replied.

Twilight bumped his shoulder with her own and he gave a quiet snort as he nodded. The stallion nodded and managed not to fall to the ground a second time.

“I do not plan to exchange it all. Just enough to get the account going.” He reasoned.

Twilight nodded in agreement. “How much were you thinking?”

“I was going to use ten but upon finding out their worth then I will change that to five.” He explained.

“That sounds appropriate.” She agreed.

Oblivion reached into his saddlebag and pulled out three more crowns and set them on the counter. Caramel reached for them and they were slid into a folder off to the side of the counter. Caramel nodded as well.

“I can put these five into the works to be converted. Give me a few days and I will have an answer about their full value for you.” Applejack came out from behind the counter and stood with them. “I’ll put the amount that we come to in the account as soon as I can. If I see you in the meant time I'll update you.”

“It’s more likely that you will see AJ before me. I give you permission as the owner of the account to inform her of the basic details, such as the value, and ask her to inform me.”

Caramel looked at him before responding. “That was easy and formal.”

Applejack laughed. “He’s not as formal as he used ta be. But ya still needed that confirmation.”

“True. Thank you for your permission. I will hopefully be able to speak to you directly if not then I will talk to Applejack.” The brown pony said to him.

Oblivion nodded and backed away from the counter. He turned to leave with the two mares and dragon on his heels. “I have to admit that I was surprised to hear that the currency here and mine were as different as they are.”

Twilight drew up closer to him and she nodded as he spoke. “Well, a bit is made out of various base metals, such as iron and brass. As far as I know there is no trace of gold or anything in it. It would make sense that a pure gold coin would be worth much more. What are those called where you’re from anyway?”

“We call them a Crown. There are other variations of the same coin but this one is the most common. Some of them as called by a different name such as an Oren or a Floren.” He replied to the inquisitive Unicorn. “A Crown is the most common nowadays and the most often used.”

Twilight trotted to keep close to his side as he spoke to her. Spike leaned on her back and his eyes went to Applejack who chuckled.

“Careful ya hear. She will never run out o’ questions fer ya.” Applejack teased.

Oblivion slowed down and cast a glance over his shoulder to the teasing mare. Her smile fell at the glint in his eye and she gave a nervous smile.

“Which is good fer ya. Yer friends with us so it makes sense ta ask questions… Please don’t tease me back.”

Twilight snorted a laugh at the other mare’s sheepish look. “Easting your words already Applejack?”

“Maybe a bit.” She admitted and caught up with them. “Ah keep fergettin’ that he’s quick with his own barbs.”

“My emotions are greatly dampened so it makes teasing me close to impossible if you’re looking for a reaction from it. I lost the ability to be embarrassed many years ago.” He informed her.

“I know who that was done.” Twilight chirped happily and look at the other ponies with her. “I mean, he told me and I remember what he had said.” She said as she quickly looked at the ground.

Oblivion gave a low chuckle and went back to his previous pace and the others moved to keep up with him. Applejack caught up to him first and she smiled as she spoke to him.

“So ya told her more than ya told me?” She asked.

“She asked.” He replied. “I saw no reason not to reply to her questions about what I am and how it came to be.”

The farm mare nodded and they fell into silence as they made their way toward the library. Twilight trotted ahead of them and reached the front door and turned to look at them.

“Thanks for letting me come along on your errands.” She smiled as she went on. “And thank you for letting me observe the spell this morning Oblivion. I’m still mystified how you manage to accomplish magic at all but I’m learning to let it go and accept it as fact.” She said to him as she chuckled.

He nodded to her as she opened the front door and went inside as Spike waved goodbye to the pair of them. AS they turned to head toward the farm he could see Applejack looking from him to the front and then back to him. A few minutes went past before he glanced at her.


She startled and nearly stopped in her tracks but she kept moving with him. “Ah was just wondering’. How much is a monster worth?”

“Depends on the monster.” He replied. “A Drowner is worth less than a Fiend.”

She glared for a moment before she huffed and went on. “Ah mean what is the average. Like what is a Fiend worth?”

“The last Fiend I dealt with had a long list of deaths attached to it when I was contracted to find and kill it. After killing it and brings back the head I think it ended up being close to five hundred crowns.”

She looked startled and her nose wrinkled. “Ya cut off the head?”

“Of course. I have to provide proof of its death or they might try to argue and not pay me.” He explained. “Evidence is the best way to ensure that they cannot try to get out of the contract and stiff me the agreed-upon payment.”

Applejack looked sick for a few moments before she gave her head a slight shake. “Ah saw that drawin’ of that troll. How do ya cut off that things head?”

“Slowly and very carefully.” He replied. “Cut wrong and your knife will snap.”

The mare was silent as they walked along the dirt road toward the farm. The mare seemed to brighten suddenly and her eyes fell on him.

“So what story would ya tell the foals this time?”

“I truly have no idea. Showing a few sword exercises is the easier option. All the ones that immediately come to mind are a bit gruesome for a group of foals.”

Applejack looked at him. “What about stories about Witcher's?”

Oblivion barked a laugh and looked to the mare. “Oh, those are most certainly not foal friendly. Especially, if you want a story from Lambert.”

“That bad?”

“Lambert is an ass. He’s a good Witcher, but he’s still an ass.” Oblivion replied.

“How so?”

“Witcher's have a skill called Axii. Basically, it can influence the mind of weak ponies and get them to fight for the Witcher instead of against them. It’s a version of mind control. We also use it to get answers or calm a pony down that might be hysterical.”


“One of Lambert’s favorite uses is to use Axii on one bandit then set him loose on his fellows while Lambert watches and kills the ones that remain later.”

“Oh my.” Applejack looked to the road as they walked.

“As I said, he’s an ass.”

“Ya weren’t kidding. What about those sorceresses ya mentioned?”

Oblivion stopped. He looked away for a moment. “I don’t know a great deal about any of them. I have spoken with Triss and Yen at length but I know very little of them personally.”

“Old wound?”

“No. I have never been anything more than another Witcher to them. Geralt is the one that gets himself tangled up with them. I’ll pass.”

“Ah see. So what about stories about him?” Oblivion started walking again. “Did ya do any contracts with him?”

“Actually I did. He and I ran together for a few months once. Were on the Isle of Skellige. Met up with an old friend, a druid, by the name of Ermion. Had to settle a dispute between Jarl's sons. That was a nightmare.”

“What's a druid?”

“It’s a pony that can influence and control the weather, plants, animals, and is a pony that the locals turn to for help when needed.”

“So what happened?”

“Skelligers love to fight, drink and raid and kill each other. They also can never agree on anything except who to fight next. Usually, anyone that isn’t from the isles is a target. Geralt and I were a common target. Though most Skelligers realize that fighting an armed Witcher is a fast way to your death. We came upon Ermion trying to dissolve a dispute between the sons of two Jarls.” He looked at the mare. “The leader of the family. We managed to get ourselves smack in the middle of it and get challenged to combat. No swords, just hooves.”

“That sounds painful.”

“Oh, it was. A Skelliger is shorter than I am but stockier than Big Mac. It's like hitting a brick wall. I don’t even remember how it got started or how we got roped into it.”

“Did you win?”

“Of course. We got beat around the ring by our opponents but the nice thing about being a Witcher is that we can take a few hits and shrug it off. I ended up back to back with Geralt and we switched opponents. His opponent was slower than I am but faster than him. Mine was his height but built like a wall. It took some time but we won. Though we had our fair share of bruises for our efforts. The plus to the encounter was earning a hell of a reputation and the sons were forced to listen to the druid as part of the agreement.”

Applejack laughed. “So ya won but got beat up in the process?”

“True, but we still won.”

“That's all that mattered?”

“Talk to any Skelliger and yes.” He replied with a chuckle. “And in this case, ask any Witcher and that was the case.”

The two ponies chuckled as they walked through the gates. Oblivion went to find Big Mac and Applejack went into the house.

Oblivion helped the red stallion pick up the orchards and waited till they heard the dinner bell.