In The Company of The Sun

by PlumBuckeredOut

Ch. 17: Imponderable (v.1)

I held little sympathy for whatever distress Finchelstein harbored under the chieftain's piercing gaze. I had more urgent matters prying at me. Like how I felt such spiteful revenge in the first place. An inching notion twisted within the recesses of my brain, like starved fangs piercing into raw flesh. That tainted thought was coaxing the rest of me that such feelings were natural, even acceptable. But I was not tempted, even as I drifted into the aphotic abyss of the dreamless... and nothing bothered me more than to drift alone in the silence. A small quip echoed with the last remnants of my father's morals. 'Do not be afraid to question all around you, but take care with what company you ask, and solace with what you learn.' My eyelids felt swollen as I faded in and out of sleep. Comforting sounds of voices followed me; from the present and the past.

"You trust the the hircine?"

"It would be wise of you not to doubt his knowledge."

"How can I judge someone without the hairs of age in their beard, and the lack of emotion in their heart."

"Do you doubt the Royal sisters as well?"

"I do not doubt the wisdom of King Din. He was an honorable ally... nor do I doubt the keenness of his queen. I have seen their prowess, I have not witnessed his."

"Do you trust in me?"

"As a scholar?"

"As a friend."

"I do, You will vouch for him?"

"As will you when the time comes. He is vital to our alliance. You will witness his prowess... he is keen to rule, and eager to believe."

I wanted to assume that it was about me, but the pitch of the voices clarified that it was not only about me, but possibly my father. I knew then that it was Burred-paw and Star Swirl speaking. I sighed deeply as I felt my mutated forearms had been tightly bound. The feeling in my arms was almost nonexistent, the weight was still there but any tangible movement wasn't felt. The quick shuffle in the room removed my second-guessing.

"Prince?" Star Swirl warmly called out.

"Yes?" I bleated.

My head was lifted as the sounds of unraveling cloth and the blinding flash of light from Star Swirl's horn came into view.

"How is your sight?" He asked.

I looked around me. Plants of various sizes were resting in decorative pots. Herbs hung upside down by the open window giving the room a pleasant herbal breeze. I rose myself up slowly to look beside me. A slow-burning baelfire was being nursed by a baby phoenix in the fireplace. I stretched a forehoof, as it lifted I smiled slowly. My cot was a mixture of pampas grass and weaved cotton, just like the healing beds in Parnce.

"We're in the apothecary...?"I stated.

"The commune has ended, and the night watch has been doubled." Burred-Paw answered.

"What happened to me?" I waivered. The two raise their eyebrows.

"Your-" Star Swirl gave a booming wheeze over the chieftain.

"You started to change form. Reflecting our dear friend here in appearance. Star Swirl gave a jesting pat to the Griffon. Queen Mora assisted us in applying the ointment, hence the wrappings. You need to keep these wrappings on, they will repel the curse's effects until we can localize the source." Star Swirl assured me. "Now I want verbatim of your voyage to Equestria."

I told them only what I thought they should hear. It was that tainted thought in me, I questioned their motives, their loyalties to my well being. A moment ago the chieftain wouldn't find common ground with me, and Star Swirl professed curing me. So I told them about Umbra, or Somber as Queen Mora called him, losing the prince, having my thoughts read, and the unicorn in the alley way. As they listened they expressed their concerns facially, losing their will to talk with me. I was fine with their silence. I just wanted to hear my father's voice again. What kind of leader could i be without his teachings. I wasn't well enough to stay in Equestria, yet again. They wrapped the linens back over my eyes, bid me to try and dream once more.

I did dream; back to my youth.


King Par slowly closes the door of his son's room. His eyes gaze over to his wife. Her bloodshot eyes cause the king to embrace tightly in a passionate hug.

"He almost didn't make it." King Par waveringly whispered, as his held his own tears back.

"It was Equestria... The magics there are effecting him." She sullenly reasoned. King Par raises his lady's chin. His sadness hidden within his words.

"I was a fool to think my magic was strong enough to protect him. I promise my love, it will not happen again." He promised. "I must make arrangements with King Din. He and I will find a way to keep Norm and the commune safe." As King Din turned resolute. His lady hooked a forehoof to her lord's, stopping him.

"Pareil... How long will this voyage be?" she asked worriedly.

"As long as it must Lady Girgentana." He calmly replied.