The Overlord Chrome
Within a dark tent, an Alicorn worked. Facing a map on the table, she moved pieces upon it, muttering quietly to herself. Behind her, on a pile of cushion, a purple baby dragon slept.
“Twilight?” A voice spoke, “are you free now?”
“Rainbow!” Exclaimed the alicorn, spinning around as she took in the sight of a blue Pegasus draped in a traveler’s cloak. As the Rainbow Dash shook off her hood, her multicolored mane flowed free of the bundle she kept it in.
“Are you okay Rainbow?” Asked Twilight concernedly, “I thought you didn't want to come because…”
Seeing her friend hesitate, Rainbow’s eyes hardened.
“I can’t go back now,” she whispered in a deathly tone, “not after seeing what he did to this place.”
As to what she was referring to, both friends knew very well. Outside the flap of the tent, an army was readying for war. In fact, the tent was located in the middle of the main encampment. Beyond it however, just several kilometers away, was none other than the target of the siege.
The Crystal Kingdom.
In its entire radiant splendor, the city of the crystal ponies shone far brighter than usual. However that may be due to the very fact that it was the only place within a few thousand miles not covered in darkness.
To the rank and file soldiers. The story was that a being of evil had went to the Crystal Kingdom, dethroned the Crystal Princess, Mi Amore Cadenza, and her husband, Shining Armor. The citizens of the Crystal Empire fared better, becoming his thralls.
To a private few, the story was far more complex. In summary, a dear friend and powerful ally had fallen into the jaws of misdeeds. For personal and ‘selfish’ goals, he had wrested control over the Crystal Kingdom from Twilight’s brother and sister-in-law, Shining Armor and Princess Cadence respectively. In turn, he re-enacted the scene King Sombra once did, forcing his will into the Crystal Ponies, turning them into his loyal servants.
Princess Celestia and Luna had immediately ordered an army mobilized. For the Crystal Kingdom was one of Equestria’s greatest assets.
Gazing at her friend, Twilight asked.
“Can you do it? We don’t wish to force you.”
Turning her head away so as to not let Twilight see the tears welling up in her eyes, Rainbow Dash spoke.
“My friends need me, I… Have to do it.”
Duke Solid Bulk, a well-muscled unicorn with a shimmering brown coat and a flowing mane of dark and light blue, marched along the hallway of the Crystal Citadel. An imposing structure which had grown out of the original castle in the Crystal Kingdom. An improvement, in Solid Bulk’s opinion, after all, he was never a fan of the previous one, being as impractical as it was in times of war.
As he marched along the hallway, the duke could see the less fortunate slaving it out as the entire castle prepares for war.
'Fools', noted the duke, 'you should have joined our Great Lord Lueur while you had the chance. Now I doubt you even have the conscious to witness what happens.'
The “less fortunate” were similar to him. Their coats were shining and their mane and tails were in light and dark hues. A side effect of accepting the powers of the Stars and Shadows, but one that could be overlooked due to the benefits they bring. In fact, the term going around now that described them was Dark Crystal Ponies, a term that Duke Solid Bulk finds fitting to represent them.
While many were subjected to the fate of a mindless slave, the “more fortunate” ones like him who swore loyalty to the great lord were granted the privilege to enjoy their newfound power. In fact, Solid Bulk could feel the raw energy, both physical and magical, coursing through his veins. The intensity of the power granted to him and the rest had in fact made them feel a great deal more powerful.
And it had, for Solid Bulk had tested his most simple attack spell, the magic blast, out on a target dummy. The spell was originally strong enough to knock the dummy about, with it being solidly built and all. What it resulted in was a scattered pile of burnt straw littered around the training field.
As he came before the doors to the throne room, however, his confidence had all but disappeared. How could he not? After all, behind the doors, seated atop a throne of crystals was none other than the very being who made this possible, He who conquered a Kingdom in a single night. The Overlord himself.
All of a sudden, a booming laughter echoed throughout the hallway, originating from the Throne Room itself, causing the Duke to jump in surprise.
“Even his laughter hold so much power,” muttered the Duke, trembling as he imagined the unspeakable horrors he believe to be occurring within. Gathering his courage, the Duke hollered.
“Duke Solid Bulk requests an audience with Lord Lueur! Permission to enter the Throne Room, Sir!”
Almost at once, the gargantuan doors swung open, a sign for him to proceed. Trembling ever so slightly, that was what Solid Bulk did.
Inside the throne room, there were two platforms of crystal. Atop one were two shackled prisoners, a white male Unicorn and a female pink Alicorn, both bruised but still conscious, their horns covered in dark crystals which occasionally sparks, preventing them from utilizing magic. Despite all the oppression, the male Unicorn glared insolently at the occupant of the second platform, who sat, laughing upon a gleaming throne of crystals.
The second occupant is an Alicorn of dark green, whose entire body shimmered in the light of the chandelier hung from the ceiling. A black and white mane and tail flowed in the air despite the lack of wind, and a curved horn protrudes from his forehead, a light green aura surrounding it as his pitch black eyes beheld his object of amusement.
Wiping tears of mirth from his eyes, Lord Lueur flipped the page of the novel he was peering into, The Legend of Starguide the Traveller.
“This is golden!” Laughed Lueur as he continued to read, “such a comedic play! And a well executed trick too!”
Catching sight of the glaring Unicorn, Lueur could not help but snicker.
“Is there a problem, Shining Armor? Sure you don’t want a book? Can help you pass the time as there’s not much else to do when chained to a platform.”
As the White Unicorn ignored him, Lueur shrugged as he flipped a page.
“Suit yourself, it’s not my mind anyway.”
Peering over the text, Lueur smiled as he sees his next visitor.
“Ah!” Laughed Lueur, “If it isn’t Duke Solid Bulk! You ARE Duke Solid Bulk, right?”
Looking very uncomfortable, the Dark Crystal Unicorn nodded.
“I’ve come bringing dire news, milord.”
“It appears that the armies of Equestria had just arrived. We predict that we would have an hour for them to finish setting up camp, another hour for them to prepare before they begin to attack.”
“Hmmmm…. And so?” Inquired the disinterested Lueur.
“I and my cohorts believe that we should attack now, while they are still setting up camp.”
“How familiar are you with psychological warfare, my dear duke?” interjected Lord Lueur.
Looking very puzzled at this change of topic, the duke replied.
“Yes, milord, I am familiar with the concept, but not the practice.”
“Good!” Applauded Lueur, “Now, picture this. The Equestrian Army had already set up their camps, and had proceeded to attack us. However, with our new defense systems, only a few would be able to pass through our line of protection. With all the fighting going on however, the invaders would realize too late that their camp was long destroyed. With all provisions and medicine out, what would happen to them?”
Recognition dawned upon the face of Duke Solid Bulk as he registered what his master had said.
“They would lose all hope,” replied the Duke.
“Excellent! Now tell our soldiers to get ready for a losing battle!”
“Yessi...” Before he finished his affirmative, something registered wrong in the duke’s mind with that sentence. “Milord… Pardon for this… but did you say losing battle?”
“Of course I did,” smiled Lord Lueur as he returned to his book, “I do have a habit of planning ahead after all.”
“Understood Sir.” Duke Solid Bulk saluted before making his way out of the throne room.
As the doors swung shut. The only noise that could be heard within the room was Lueur’s snickering, before Cadence spoke up.
“What are you planning, Chrome?” Cadence asked, her eyes sharp despite the state of her body.
“Exactly what I said, Mi Amore Cadenza,” Replied Lueur, eyes never leaving the book. “By the way, did you know that your name actually means ‘I Love Cadence’? Quite intriguing, considering you ARE the Princess of Love. Also, what did I say about uttering my true name?”
“Don’t change topic, we know you. What are you truly planning?”
“And here’s the part where I reveal my entire plan to you so that you could somehow babble it to Twilight and gang when they barge into here. Then, with the knowledge of my plans, they would be able to stop me in time and somehow save this pathetic excuse of a kingdom.” Said Lueur, rolling his eyes, “sheesh, you got any idea how bad that story would sound?”
“It’ll sound alright,” growled Shining Armor, “especially about that part where you were defeated by Twilight and her friends!”
“Shining!” Chided Cadence, “Don’t antagonize him!”
Seeing the Shining Armor’s reaction of disbelief, Lueur could not help but to laugh out in uncontrolled amusement.
“Ahaha… The two of you!” Shook Lueur as he desperately tried to control his laughter. “Such a sweet couple… haha… at such a time too! Hahaha… do you have no sense of priority?”
“Enough of this!” Said Shining Armor through clenched teeth; “a traitor like you deserves to be cast aside just like you did the same to us!”
Almost at once, Lueur stopped, and it felt as though the temperature went a few degrees colder.
“Traitor?” Whispered Lueur in a voice Cadence and Shining Armor had never heard him speak in before, sounding like one thousand beings speaking at the same time.
“Traitor?” Lueur repeated, the word shaking the entire citadel. Outside, all the Dark Crystal Ponies looked around in fear as they heard the fury of their lord.
“You have no right, Shining,” Continued Lueur in that deathly voice, “no right at all to call me that.”
Mane blazing, the black and white within it started to flow about like a whirlpool as a cold wind blew through the room.
“You left me for dead! All of you fools!” Snarled Lueur, “ Believing me to be a threat because of my heritage. Oh yes, don’t look so shocked like that, Cadence; I got quite the load of sensitive information on that meeting between the princesses. In fact, the only reason you are still alive was because Twilight and you argued for my sake.”
“Then why?” Asked Cadence, “why attack the Crystal Kingdom?”
“Oh… it’s not like you are that innocent anyway.” Laughed Lueur cruelly, “but I suppose I could tell you why. There are only two reasons. First of all, would be to get a quadruple revenge, for even though you and Twilight argued for me. The fact still stands, and added to that would be the fact that Shining Armor and you would be the perfect bait to gather the remaining princesses! Isn’t that brilliant?”
Eyes widening in shock at Lueur’s hysterical confession, Cadence asked the next dreaded question.
“And the second reason?”
“Well,” paused Lueur meaningfully, “it’s on behalf of the Umbral race, sounds familiar doesn’t it?”
“You can’t mean…” Gasped Cadence in horror.
“Yes, you got it right,” praised Lueur, “due to your feat of utterly destroying King Sombra, when I absorbed the power of the Umbral race, they specifically asked me to get back at you.”
“You monster! How far would you go for power?” Accused Shining Armor.
“Power?” Chuckled Lueur as his voice returned to normal. “I dislike that word, in fact, I despise the very fact that I have to use it to sate this hole you fools left in my heart. Blame yourselves,” continued Lueur as he headed for the doors, “for it’s your own doing that landed you in this predicament.”
“Chrome! Chrome Windcutter!” Called Cadence in desperation. “Don’t do this! There’s still good in you! Remember the ones you loved, remember the ones who loved you! Remember your friends! Don’t do this!”
Turning around, the dark Overlord Lueur smiled bitterly at his two prisoners.
“Love? Friends?” Laughed the Alicorn, “I believed in them once, look where it got me.”
With that, the doors of the Throne Room swung shut, leaving the two prisoners alone and the memory of a pitch black eye imprinted deep into their minds.
'Damn that Cadence', thought Lueur as he walked along the hallway, paying no attention to his subjects as they scrambled to get out of his way, muttering apologies and flatteries as they do so.
'How dare she bring up unwanted memories!' Cursed the Alicorn, 'and my old name too, how dare she!'
As he stepped out onto the battlements of his fortress, Lueur had convinced himself thoroughly.
'Yes,' he thought, 'Chrome Windcutter is no more. That was a weak self, a weak Pegasus. Now, only Lueur exists! Celestia controls the sun? Luna controls the moon? Ha! I am the ruler of the light and shadow, what are they to me? Not even Love and Friendship will stand a chance!'
However, as he pushed away memories of his old self away. Subconsciously, he began to review them, the fragments that he meant to discard.
Slowly he began to remember…