• Published 25th Mar 2012
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ANZAC Legends - SterlingNomad



They didn't mention mud. Or blood. Or tears.

  • ...
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They Gave Me a Tin Hat...

They Gave Me a Tin Hat...
Chapter One of ANZAC Legends

Carlton was a big stallion.

Bigger than most at least.

It had proved beneficial to his line of employment, owner of the fine establishment known as the Mare and the Moon. Well, fine might not be the best choice of words. The M&M had a prolific reputation for being the hide out for the seediest members of pony society. Any society.

As Carlton purveyed his small, smoke filled bar, he counted three Griffons, hunched over a small table, quietly discussing Celestia knows what. Carlton was sure he didn't really want to know at all. On the opposite side, next to a broken Honky Tonk piano was an ancient looking dog, who quietly supped at a large tankard. In the booth next to him, a relatively small Dragon had somehow managed to squeeze himself into the confines of the small pub, just gazing unobservantly at the small shot glass in front of him, Carlton could swear he saw a tear slowly dive into the golden pool of scotch within.

It was no secret to Carlton how The M&M had gained such a diverse clientele. His pub had curiously become trapped in three different Nations. If one were to step out the door, they would technically be within Equestrian boarders. Were they to play upon the 'Tonk, they would be vacationing within Canine lands. And If they were to gaze in awe at the empty, cobweb laden trophy case celebration the achievements of a sports team long since gone, they would be stepping foot into the Griffon Kingdom.

Legend goes that, to end the great war of Canine Expansion, Princess Celestia Ruler of the Ponies, Count Claus Ruler of the Griffons and Dutchess Clarissa Ruler of Canines, agreed to a harrowing three way duel, one that would decide the fate of all three nations. This was the point at which the duel was called. At sunrise the three met, and surrounded by political and military advisers, began the duel. It was brutal, and brief, as Claus the evil War Lord first turned upon Clarissa the Whiny Drama queen, giving Celestia the opertune moment to strike. To maintain a presence over the land she decreed a structure of pony origin must be placed upon this boarder, giving Equestria a gateway into her neighbor's lands.

It was a nice story to tell the occasional tourist, but Carlton knew the real reason.

The dogs were far too busy bickering with their Neighbors, the Dragons, to the North East. The Ponies were occupied expanding West, pushing their borders. The Griffons just didn't care either way. There was no interest in the center of the continent anymore. No border patrols, no checkpoints, no tax ponies, just three invisible lines in the sand. Any forward thinking business pony could set up shop for cheap, tax free plots. And so Carlton's father had.

And here he was, a big red stallion with no friends, no mares and no life. At least the M&M had an interesting user base.

This was how many days would go for him. Wake up hungover, and ponder life at the bar. No change, or excitement or adventure. Just cheap liqueur filled nights and smoke filled days. The big red workhorse sighed, giving the bar the obligatory wipe down before one drunk or another decided tap into their poison of choice well before the sun dipped below the endless horizon once more.

The three Griffons began to leave, and Carlton idly watched them go. He doubted he would ever see them again. One after the other, the three grabbed their deep black lather coats and made for the door. One stayed back, the smaller of the three. It appeared his intrigue had been caught by a trinket on the wall. He scratched the bottom of his beak with his claws, looking like he was solving a deep mystery. With a raised eyebrow he gazed around the room, his 'colleagues' waiting impatiently by the door. His eyes fell on Carlton, and his beak twisted into an awkward smile, and he cocked his eyebrows, motioning for Carlton to take a look at what had been found.

Carlton hadn't noticed the first time, which seemed to annoy the feathered lion, especially as the red drought stallion had been looking straight at him.

*HEHHH, HEMMM*

The Griffon noisily cleared his throat, making eye contact with Carlton and nodding his head towards the wall in an obvious manner.

Carlton Just shrugged his large shoulders, bringing his hooves up from the bar top and waiving them about in an egsadurated manner.

"Who, me?" Asked the big red drought horse, laced with sarcasm.

The Griffon just brought his right claw up to his face, and he quietly spat what Carlton assumed to be a strongly worded opinion on just where this stupid foreigner could shove his sarcasm, before he finally addressed Carlton directly, turning so he was parrallel to the wall.

"YEZZ yu!, feazzer brain! Come, I have queztionz."

Carlton just shrugged. It was not always that a customer made such a deal about one of the few pieces of worthless memorabilia. An old Wonderbolts jursey, a dusty old horse shoe, a plaque on the wall describing local fauna. Nothing worth note, but if the griffon was willing to make a scene over some small detail, Carlton decided it would only be fair to humor him. Carlton slowely, painfully, retracted himself from behind the bar, making a point of moving every table or chair out of his way as slowely as possible. The griffons right paw was tapping furiously upon the hard wood floor. Finally Carlton had completed the the trip spanning six meters, much at the behest of all three Griffons. The one in front of him gazed up and down Carlson's large stature, who was about an inch taller than the griffon. this seemed to worry him not, as he gestured at the wall.

"Vat," the Griffon paused, and pointed to the wall, "Iz zat?"

His claw was pointing at a thin copper rod, about as wide as one equestrian bit, and as long as the neck of a bottle. It was tapered at one end, that in itself being a much darker shade then the rest of the body. Carlton was dumb struck, for real this time. He could never recall having ever seen such a strange and unusual piece upon the brown walls of the pub. It was a wonder how the griffon had even seen in at a glance, it blended in perfectly with the surrounding wall. The griffon had been talking for thirty seconds now, something about old technologies and the strange thinks one finds while on the road.

"Vith my, auhhh, Buiszznez, ahmm, partnerz. yez. Partnerz..." He faltered, glancing at the two incredibly pissed off looking griffons, one was tapping at a small, tarnished gold pocket watch that was linked to his leather coat by a thin silver chain. "Ahh, perhhapz thiz should vait till anouther time perhapz. yes, anozer time." And he rushed out the door, throwing his coat upon his hunched shoulders and followed out by his larger friends.

Carlton just mumbled something that resembled an acknowledgement, not taking his eyes from the queer piece of metal, his mind searching for some comprehensive explanation. He certainly hadn't put it there, and he doubted any of his customers had either as the griffons had been the first to use that area of the bar in days. Although, it was quite hard to pick out, and he considered the possibility that it had been here for some time, just blending into the wall.

But he had cleaned this part of the wall not days before, he could clearly remember doing so. He slowly brought up a hoof, and uneasily tapped it, as if it were boiling hot. Nothing happened however, and, testing it once more, finally brought his mouth up to the wall, and nipped the thing off. It came with a tearing sound, and the remnants of some adhesive could be seen on the wall beneath, feeling around it with his tongue, Carlton could taste the glue he had used to attach everything else adorning the walls.

This confused him even more. He hadn't needed that glue for months, last using it to reattach the legs of a bar stool. It had taken him weeks to get the taste out of his mouth, and he shuddered at the thought.

Making his way back to the bar, he noticed both the Dog and Dragon had left as well, silently and unannounced. He was alone, with the thing in his mouth.

Sitting atop the bar top was a small slip of parchment, with what appeared to be a thin strip of writing. Now this was really strange. He kept a payment on purchase protocol for the bar so it was unlikely that any of his previous customers had left it for him. As he got closer he could see simple, printed lettering upon it's surface.

Carlton, The answers for your questions are wherever you choose to seek. But Ponyville would be the best place to start, one would think.

Carlton stared at the note confused, the copper rod lolling within his mouth before tumbling to the floor. He remembered hearing about Ponyville from a disgruntled Griffon almost a year ago. Just a town full of hicks, dweebs and some piece of work Pegasus. More pressing, however, was how the note appeared in the first place. Carlton's brain began to run wild. All his foal hood dreams of leaving this shit-hole for good became, for only a tantalizing instant, a reality. Something had left him these messages in this very room, and gave him free will to do as he pleased. It said so, right there in the letter.

"Wherever I choose to seek..." He said wistfully, a grin on his face. It had given him, Carlton a ticket out of his dead end life. Carlton did as any failing business owner with a wasted youth and impossible dreams would do. As anypony would do who had grown up with only failier and heartbreak and boredom. Any individual who had reason to grow wary of false hopes and sudden fleets of fancy.

He picked up the Note in his teeth, and bending down to grab the rod as well, he threw them in a dusty wooden crate under the counter top.

Just a whole lot of trouble he thought.


They were alone now. Twilight, The Guard and William had been Whisked away not thirty minuets before. Bunsen had thought about asking to go with them, as more 'protection', but he held his tongue. He was already out of favor with the Princes of the Sun herself, and it would not do to begin making suspicious proposals.

Luna, who had remained deep in thought, made her way silently to the throne room, many of her nightly duties way overdue. That had left Bunsen and Celestia trapped in the laboratories reciprocal room together with only an awkward silence to entertain themselves.

Bunsen was still quite angry with his old mentor. A better word would be confused. He had spent the best part of an hour mending William, and all the while simmering under his skin, but it felt wrong. Soon, he wondered if he were as angry with Celestia for what she had done, as he was with himself for challenging her.

As Bunsen aimlessly stared at the ground, pacing up and down the large dish, Celestia was also contemplating the events of the evening. She couldn't help but feel slightly betrayed by Bunsen, but by the same token, she couldn't feel more proud either. It was few and far between when a pony questioned her actions, and she always delighted when she was told that she was, with no other way of putting it, completely wrong. It kept her grounded, sane.

She was angry at herself for acting the way she did toward her ex-student. She had over reacted, and she could see that Bunsen was deep in thought, much over the same subject she guessed. As she watched him amble to and fro, she began to remiss about his times under her wing. The look on his eyes as he was first shown the castle's Private Library. How he had published his first research paper within weeks of graduating the School for Gifted Scholars. And how, years later, he left, without notice. One month later he'd published his peic'de resistance, The Truth Behind Unicorn Sciences and The E-MF, and his name had been renown with the study of Magic ever since.

She let out a dainty yawn and rubbed her eyes. She had to be up with the sun in less then four hours, followed by another long, tiring day. Perhaps now would be an appropriate time to get some rest.

"Bunsen, despite what you may believe, you have performed admirably today. I shall take my leave to my quarters, and perhaps salvage the last few hours of this night. You should go too, we have a long day ahead of us tomorrow."

Bunsen looked up, and opened his mouth as if he were about to protest. Celestia silenced him with a raised hoof.

"No buts or ifs Bunsen. I know what you can be like."

And with that, she turned, and with one down beat of her majestic wings, was elevated onto the platform above. Just as she was making her way out of the room, Bunsen spoke up for the first time since their agreement.

"Princess, wait! Allow me to apologize for my actions this evening. They were unbecoming of someone of-"

"Bunsen." Celestia said sternly. "You need not apologize for anything."

She disappeared through the wall, and Bunsen was left alone in the cold, silent walls of the Reciprocal room.

A few minuets went by, as Bunsen began pacing up and down once more. It was not til' he noticed he had been standing in the same spot for the better part of five minuets that he decided Celestia may be right, and that he should make his way to the warm, welcoming bed that awaited him on the other side of the laboratory complex. He glanced at the pile of green and brown on the floor, Williams gear. The shirt was also still lying there, blood turning the fabric solid. He uneasily paced over, and picked up what appeared to him to be a saddle bag. On trying to lift it however, he almost snapped his jaw. It was heavy. Incredibly heavy. He was sure that if he were to place it upon his back it would most certainly break. Sighing, he realized that all this would have to be brought to Twilight's Library.

He briefly considered keeping it here, to discover more about this creature and his past, but he abolished that thought soon enough. He was not about to invade William's privacy based on the suspicions of those around him. He reminded himself he would have to figure out a way to get this all over to Ponyville without alerting anypony else. It seemed long distance teleportation would be his only solution.

It would have to wait however. He was in no state to try such powerful magic, and decided it would have to wait till later in the mourning. Instead, he found His way up to the platform above by hauling himself over one of the computers on the walls.

Hoofing himself up again, he threw himself over the ledge and onto the platform. Although not an altogether exhausting maneuver, he lay with his back to floor, gazing up at the dull white ceiling. He tried with all his might to juxtapose some of the free, swirling thoughts that sloshed around his head like a cork in the sea. If he could put it in words, or prose, or even rhyme, he might make sense of it still. Alas his addled brain couldn't make heads or tales of it.

He groaned as he eventually picked himself of the grated floor, and he twisted himself onto his hooves, before standing in earnest. He felt the heady weight of blood rushing from his face and brain, but stood firm, if even rocking uneasily.

But he was up, and blinking his eyes in tandem, he slowly trotted over to the blank facade and pushed through, appearing on the other side. He felt the cool of the laboratory complex, and the air was still and acrid. But he pushed on, aimlessly letting his feet take him to his beckoning mattress.

Finally he came stumbling to a wooden doorway at the end of a short corridor, about five minuets away from the reciprocal room. His office was but a small box in the back of the complex. Its walls were bare and it was constructed in much the same manner as the rest of the complex. As this room was only used by those who were required in the laboratory complex for large periods of time, the room had a musky, unused smell that seemed to burn Bunsen's nostrils.

Pushed up against the far wall, a cot was placed, a thick blue blanket and white pillow the only source of comfort within those four walls. Upon the desk were an in and out tray, a small stool, and a little pot filled with different types of quills and pencils.

Bunsen unceremoniously flung his lab coat onto the floor, too tired to hang upon a coat hook on the door, and slowly ambled over to the bed. He let his glasses fall to onto the surface of the desk, and with a flash of his horn, the harsh white lights were extinguished, leaving the room in pitch darkness. It did not matter however, the cot was only a few feet away, and as soon as his forelegs hit the frame, he flopped onto the thin mattress and sighed before letting himself drift off into a deep slumber.


*PING*

Had the room not been so silent, he may have never heard it, but the small imperfection in the stillness stabbed Bunsen's senses like a knife through butter. The lights flashed on again, and Bunsen twisted his head around to the floor, gazing with blurry eyes at where the disturbance had origionated.

Bunsen squinted as the light flooded his senses for a moment, but there was something below him, he could see it gleaming against the drab grey floor.

There in the center of the room was a thin copper rod, tapered at one end. Next to it was a small square of parchment, with appeared to be some writing. In his exhausted state, the fact a small copper rod and note had mysteriously appeared in his room was bypassed by Bunsen's initial thoughts of intrigue. He fumbled onto the floor, like a foal being born, and held himself up with unsteady legs. He could make out some writing, printed onto the brownish piece of paper.

A Souvenir-There Was a J-SM

He squinted again, doing a double take. But defiantly resting on the tiled floor, it was there, beckoning Bunsen closer. With his magic, he held the small rod up into the light.

The tapered end was a darker shade then the rest of the body, and it appeared to be detachable. On the opposite end, the Rod's face had a slight flange to it, and there seemed to be a small, darker circle surrounded by the rest of the copper plate, resembling a target. Flipping it over once more, Bunsen attempted to separate the darker tapered end from the rest of the body. He gripped it within his teeth, and yanked. slowly but surely, he could feel the end becoming looser and looser. Perhaps if he heated the end a bit, it would expand and come free?

Bunsen's horn glowed steadily, and a ring of magic formed around the circumference of the rod, where the tapered end met with the copper body. He could see it begin to discolor, and then slowly turn a dazzling shade of orange. Fearing he had overdone it, Bunsen quick-smart abolished the glow from his horn. The copper under the ring had discolored permanently, and a strong chemical scent had filled the air. Despite his efforts however, the copper refused to release its pearl. Perhaps another go would prove fortui....

*CRACK*

As a reflex, he squeezed his eyes shut, and felt something pass inches from his face. Nervous system taking over, he mindlessly flung himself back, colliding with the cot, his head clanging against the hard steel frame. He felt a dull pain begin to form at the base of his skull, its intensity seemed to wax and wayne.

The echo, of what ever had gone off, resonated around the room like a tuning fork. It throbbed an it swayed, seemingly intensifying the dull ache at the back of Bunsen's head that was spreading steadily around to his ears, which rang with an unpleasant pitch. He decided he needed to open his eyes, to get a sense of... what ever had just happened. There was confusion all throughout his brain, like a cyclone of tepid thoughts and sour feelings. But with the power of hill will alone, he pushed his lids open, one at a time.

In the center of the room, the Copper rod was lying on the ground, split from the end down to the middle, resembling a peeled banana. The darker end could not be seen. However, above him a hole had appeared in the roof, its circumference clean and about as wide as a bit.

He could smell something new as well, like fireworks...

*PING*

From the hole in the roof, a metallic lump fell from the ceiling, bouncing and rolling around on the floor before coming to rest beside the parchment.

Bunsen wearily eyed it off for a minute, making sure that it was as inert as the parchment it now lay upon, and then the crucial gears seemed to click in Bunsen's brain.

At once the lump of metal seemed familiar to him. He had seen it not five hours ago, lodged inside William's chest. After remembering what it had done to him, Bunsen felt a chill run up his spine, and the dull pain in his head grew ever stronger.

Whatever it was that had gone off at his feet, whether by his choosing or not, had very nearly caused him a lot of pain. He had no idea how that bloody creature could suffer a wound like that, and just smile it off like an ignorant fool. Was he immortal, insane, or simply crazed from the blood loss?

An Idea began to form in side his brain, swirling and frothing, collecting mass. Whatever that... thing.. had been, William was the only creature he knew that would have any clue as to what had happened that night.

Despite his reservations, he would have to interrogate Will in earnest. His analytic mind needed answers, and Will would be his only source.

Summoning up all the strength he could muster, a glow began to form at the tip of his horn. Its pleasant aura filled him with confidence, like it did all Unicorns capable of the spell, and with one final grunt, he had disappeared in a flash, the note flapping in the gentile breeze, the lump of metal rolling around the floor, blissfully ignorant to the trouble it had very nearly caused.


As the wooden door creaked open, the early mourning light cascading through the windows filled the dark, dusky candle lit confines of Twilight's little living room. Her head was low to the ground, her shoulders even lower, as she attempted to keep her entrance as quiet as possible. Her back legs were crouched and, her head swung from side to side, purveying the room as if she had never stepped foot within it's domain. it was completely as she had left it, the ink thankfully remained upon the desk and paper, failing to spill onto the easily stained wooden floors. She edged in an inch more, trying with great effort not to create any more sound that necessary. It was only dawning on her that she needn't put herself through such tasks, when it had been made clear that William meant no harm to nopony. Yet, she pushed on with her exasperating cloak and dagger game, slowly bringing her hind legs to her fore ones, inching towards the center of the room.

She had made it fully into her own living room, her silhouette played and danced upon the book shelves and cupboards. Her five companions waited by the door, not too keen to enter, but not willing to miss out on the promise of an exciting new adventure either. Even Fluttershy was leaning forward, balancing on the tips of her hooves. Twilight knew her friends were watching her every move, waiting for the signs only they knew to pick up.

Content that William was not hiding under any the assembled furnishings around the small abode, Twilight invited her friends in with a succinct nod.

First to enter was Rainbow Dash, she held her head high but she wore the fear on her face like a mask, her eyes darting around the room, scoping out any and all visible threats. Next came Rarity and Applejack, who paced shoulder to shoulder, their hooves striking the wooden floor as one. After them came Pinkie, her light red fuzz swaying and bouncing with her springy stride as she hopped into the room, nonplussed by Twilight's earlier speech. Mid bounce however she stalled, and turned to give a bright smile towards the open door, where a dainty yellow snout could be seen poking out the edge. Taking pity on the poor mare, Rarity trotted back to the door, and nuzzled her mellow friend's cheek like a Mother would her filly, her mouth opening and closing, speaking words of encouragement Fluttershy could hear. The vote of confidence from her dearest friend worked its magic, and Fluttershy uneasily conceded her position by the door, falling in step behind the alabaster unicorn.

Finally they had all assembled. Rarity, Rainbow, Applejack, Pinkie and even Fluttershy all gazed expectantly at Twilight awaiting their orders with baited breath. Even though she was the youngest by a year, all five heralded Twilight as their defacto leader, or at least when matters of national significance were thrust their direction. Her nerves may get the better of her at the best of times, but they all knew that if something was a muck, Twilight would be the one with answers.

"Girls I... I don't know what to say. What I have to show you is... well there's no way to put it but... sinister. Before I introduce you, I want you to promise that none of you will act... untoward our new guest." She looked directly at Rainbow and Applejack as she said this, they being the two most likely to react disastrously toward Will. Applejack nodded in compliance, whereas Rainbow rolled her eyes and gave an exasperated shrug, as if to say FIIINE. Twilight held her gaze for a beat, before continuing, "Non the less, I don't want any of you perceiving him as anything less than a threat. Now. I hate to bring you girls into this, because I have no idea what is in store for us. The letters, Will, there's something behind this, something we've never met before. But as the Elements of Harmony (She had hopped onto the table at this point) it is OUR job to find out, and if there really is a threat, We must stop it at all costs!".

Her speech was ended with a passionate cheer from the Elements before her. Despite her self, Twilight smiled. She smiled because she knew that there were no other ponies in the whole world she could trust as much as the ones before her. It was like the fist time the spark had entered her mind and consciousnesses, like the first time she looked into Applejack's eyes, or felt Fluttershy's kindness radiating off the yellow Pegasus like heat off the sun. What ever was happening right now under their noses, what ever powers conspired against them, and however powerful they might be, She was ready for them. She had never felt so proud.

"A simple good mourning would suffice."

A collection of gasps and shocked silences followed, the five (Pinkie had noted the the bust at this point, and in spite of Will's dramatic entry had begun to stare deep into it's 'eyes' rapt attention) all whipping around to locate the epicenter of the sound. And there he was, standing tall at the foot of the stairs leading down from Twilight's bedroom, his arms crossed and his stony face a painting of banal indifference. His chest was worn and splashed with scarres, some fresh, some just mere shadows, but they seemed to cover his body like vines. They were only accentuated by the blood stained dressings that rigidly clung to his chest and shoulder. It gave him an almost crumpled, over used look, as if he had been unceromonially stuffed into a trunk. His face too, had grown a fresh layer of deep brown stubble over night, the same hue as his messy, tangled tuft of hair. His eyes were blood shot and bagged, heavy creases crept like tendrils from his heavy lids. But His eyes themselves, those deep blue orbs stayed true and sharp, his gaze alone making him appear at least a decade younger than he probably was. Twilight could have no idea, he had been reluctant to reveal any of his personal information the night before, his age paramount.

Something had happened that night. William was different. Twilight had this nagging sensation in her gut, that this man was not the same as the one from the night before. That one had seemed younger, foalish, and a bit ignorant. But this Will... he was older, somehow. She had no idea. Perhaps it was just lack of sleep?

He still wore the daggy, patchy green pants and great black boots as he had been the night before and perhaps indefinitely before that. It struck Twilight that the rest of his gear had been left in the castle, where she hoped he might have a change of clothes. She would have to contact Bunsen and get him transport it across, or perhaps one of the Princess'.

As for the state of the clothes he had on him...

"Gahh, ohhh... M-M-My. Ueghh." Rarity moaned, clasping her snout together with two highly pedicured hooves. In doing so, however, a fundamental part of pony anatomy had been forgotten.

As the fashionista Hit the floor with a thud, Applejack jumped out of the way, Rarity falling neatly at her hooves. In spite of the muffled cries from the fashion designer below her AJ's raised muzzle sniffed at the air, a subtle grimace forming on the farmer's mouth. As the air currents in the library swirled and expanded, it brought William's scent to the rest of the girls, and soon even Rainbow dash was gagging. Pinkie had at this point started making faces at the wooden bust, waiting earnestly for a reaction from the stoic statue.

William must have found these reactions to his presence somewhat entertaining, and his face twisted into a bemused grin.

"Well. These are the 'Elements of Harmony then?" He said with a smug half grin.

Twilight cringed.

"You heard that speech?"

"Yous heard the question."

There, again. Twilight had a hunch the the Will she knew from seven hours ago would never have said something as deliberately austere, opting instead for some half baked remark. She decided not to honor his clandestinely serious demand, and instead turned to survey her honored friends.

Fluttershy was rubbing Rarity's bruised nose in a motherly manner, swooning over the drama queen. Rainbow Dash gripped her mouth closed, and made hurling noises from behind her less than colored face. Pinkie had discovered the ink on the table and was busy scribbling a thick handlebar mustache onto the face of her new wooden friend. Applejack just stared back at Twilight, sharing a knowing glance. With a sigh, she turned back to her current bane.

"Yes," she said weakly. "that's us."


"So, Lehme Get this' strait. Yeh refuse to answer any o' our questions, specifically pertaining to the ones about yourself. Yet you jus' 'spect us tah spill the beans about ourselves, even while you were caught trespassin' into that secret laboratory complex ...ahhh... thingy... Twahlight was talkin' 'bout. Now tha' jus' ain't right!" Said Applejack in exasperatedly.

For the last hour, the Elements had, at Twilight's permission, been surreptitiously interrogating the new comer. First they tried setting Fluttershy down next to him, to see if she could persuade him with her feeble, but ultimately adorable manner alone. Will proved to be considerate, but cold hearted beast, as he politely shot down the shy mare time and time again. Next they tried with Rainbow Dash. But all thoughts of subtlety were lost within seconds of the brash pegasus opening her mouth, and Will promptly shut like a clam, what little information he had been willing to discuss becoming off limits. Next Pinkie stated she had the perfect plan, and began a good cop bad cop routine with their captive. Twilight had to admit, it was pretty convincing, yet Pinkie had made the fatal mistake of only attaching a hat, aviators, and a comically large black handlebar moustache (that eirriely resembled the one the wooden bust now sported) to her face. To say the least, while somewhat bemused, William could not be swayed.

Twilight and Rarity were to return empty handed as well, Will proving to be impertinent to Twilight's bereting and eventual pleading, and he also showed immense volumes of self control, staying straight faced through the onslaught that crippled the entirety of the Diamond Dog organisation. Finally it was Applejack's turn and she believed, as she often did, that honesty would be the only way to blow the levee on the tightly held information that Twilight so deeply needed. Will, as ever, proved to be immovable.

"I don't expect you to tell me piss all. All YOU need to understand is that I have no intentions of telling you anything either."

AJ decided to change tack, attempting the compassionate route of questions.

"Huh, well than Mr Mckay. We don' know who you are, wha' you do, and whay you're even here. But ah told you before. We aint here to hurt you, if thats what what you're.." A laugh cut her off mid sentence.

"Ha! Hurt me? you couldn't even slightly inconvenience me. I can tell yous aren't like that anyway, well except maybe the big one last night, but that's a pretty bloody understandable action for the ruler of the realm. I recon you are far too trusting, all o' yous. A little bit a' bad blood never killed anyone." He had risen from the ground, and as he finished he dismissively waved his hand, and turned away. This outburst took Applejack by surprise, and she backed away slightly, not out of fear, but simply to give the creature more room. She then provided him with a rebuttle.

"Nah, although ah know from hard earned experience tha' it can hurt a whole dang lot."

She left the statement hanging in the air like a bad smell.

Surprisingly Will let out a small smile. While for the last 58 minuets he had been propped against a book case, watching expressionlessly as the parade of interrogators flowed past, but after that slipped from the farm ponies mouth, his face lit up, and he hung his head in disbelief, a wide grin on his face.

Then, inexplicably he started to giggle, then chortle, finally breaking out into a hearty laugh that seemed to tear at his bandages. Applejack awkwardly stood there, a confused expression on her face, and a slight blush creeping into her cheeks.

Finally he settled down and looked her dead in the eye.

"I knew you, of all of the rest of 'em, would be the first one to make a threat. Non of that, 'If you don't talk i'll grind your head into a pulp between my wings!' bollocks, no, non of that. A real, proper, decent threat." His head tilted back with a mirthful grin, and another chuckle escaped his lips, before resting his gaze back upon Applejack. "When I said I'd never tell you anything, I just want to understand, that I just don't think you're ready for what I have to say. If last nights reactions are anything to go by, yous are a fairly innocent lot. And thats okay, they told me you would be, bastards.
"Listen, when I, William McKay, With Ms Applejack as my witness, deem it fit for my information to be passed onto the 'Ponies of Equestria', I shall retell my story in full." He stated looking content.

It took a while for the information to settle on Applejack, she herself readied for defeat. Like a spark however, something clicked in her brain, about what Will had just said.

"Wait... who told' you what now? You didn't say nothin' bout' somepony else!"

She was silenced by hand.

"Like I promised. As soon as I see fit, I'll tell you everything. I guess I owe you that much."

"Owe us that much for what?"

"Well, not killing me on the spot for one. Its a greater gift than my kind are normally afforded"

Stillness...

"Well...You're welcome then, ah 'spose." And the two descended into silence once more, Applejack pondering what she had just learned, and William blissfully staring at the cielling.Once more, Applejack opened her mouth to ask a question.

"And Mr McKay, how come you don't seem affected by this at all, like you were 'specting this all along? Heck ah'd be pretty messed up if Ah suddenly found mahself far away from home. Don't you have a family or somethin'?"

"Not that I know of. And for that other thing, they call it the Five P's Applejack" A Quick glance showed that she had no idea what he was saying.

"Preparation Prevents Piss Poor Performance, and I'll tell you what, it's the bloody truth."

Comments ( 18 )

I don't know what to think of this.

385064
Well, when you come up with something, feel free to speak your mind! :pinkiehappy:
I love to know what you people are really thinking about my writing :twilightblush:

..The gave me a tin hat
and they gave me a gun
and they marched me off to the war

And the band played Waltzing Matilda

387643

As the ship sailed away from the Quey...

387647
And amidst all the tears and the shouts and the cheers
We sailed off to Gallipoli :applecry::raritycry:

Was he immortal, insane, or simply crazed from the blood loss?
The last two, it's how the lot of us are.

One of the most unique HiE stories around. Really interesting, a few spelling errors, but they don't really take away from the plot.


387819

"How well I remember that terrible day.
How the blood stained the sand and the water...":applecry:

Wow, just wow...

This story is absolutely brilliant, no criticism. NO EMOTICON IS WORTHY!

Good work.

-Jorofrarie

I saw the short description, and immediately that old Redgum song came to mind, "A Walk in the Light Green". Bravo, Sir. Bravo.

713490
That was the intention! Cheers for noticing :scootangel:

I'm honestly surprised by the amount of people on here who are getting all the references. I thought I'd been clever, but you clever bastards keep pipping me to the post :rainbowlaugh:

Also, where is new chapter, chap?

I havn't even read the story yet, but I think the theme sony for this should be "[I was only] 19".

Mum 'n' Dad and Denny,
Were at the passing out parade at pukapunyal,
It was a long march from cadets....

576543

And how in that hell they called Suvla bay,

We were butchered like lambs to the slaughter

AUSSIE AUSSIE AUSSIE!

Is this going to continue?

"Preparation Prevents Piss Poor Performance, and I'll tell you what, it's the bloody truth."

:rainbowlaugh: Lol i love it.

It's a real shame that this story hasn't seen any activity in a while. I really enjoy it,

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