• Published 3rd Sep 2013
  • 1,362 Views, 46 Comments

Shadows and Lies - Witchery



Damon Flame was just trying to escape his past when he ended up in Equestria. Things were finally looking up for him but life decided to take away everything he had worked so hard for and make it all for naught.

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Chapter 7: The Elements of Harmony

Luna: Five hundred thousand years prior

"Watch it!" Exclaimed a stallion mercenary as I ran into him.

"Apologies!" I said before galloping off to the tent she shared with her sister.

"Sister, sister, sister!" I burst into the tent, bouncing up and down before sitting down.

Celestia had been writing on a scroll as I burst into the tent we shared.

Celestia sighed and turned towards me with a warm smile. "Yes Luna? What is it?"

I clapped my hooves together in excitement. "In one of the tunnels that the pegacorn's and I were mining, a miner broke though the wall and found another cave system!"

Celestia raised an eyebrow. "That's what has you so excited? A cave system? Luna, we're digging into a MOUNTAIN. There's bound to be some cave systems."

"But do cave systems have strange metal walls?" I said with a smirk.

This grabbed Celestia's attention. "What are you going on about? No one has enough spare metal to waste it on making walls out of them."

"You mean no one today that is!"

Celestia sighed and rolled her eyes. I silently huffed at her reaction. Ever since it had been brought to my attention that many strange artifacts made of even stranger materials were being found in the mines we had constructed, I had been completely obsessed with them, believing that whatever or whomever had built them was incredibly powerful.

"Luna, you have an unhealthy obsession with this you know."

"Yes isn't it glorious?"

Celestia just shook her head and left the tent. I walked outside of the tent and quickly caught up with my sister. My thoughts were focused on imagining all the different possibilities of what we would find in the cave.

'Maybe it's gemstones! Or more gold! Or maybe ancient technology!' I happily mused.

We had been here for several weeks after one of the pegasus prospectors from our recently formed nation had discovered a gold rich vein in a mountain. The vein was so vast that Celestia estimated it being worth more than their nation was.

As we approached the mine entrance a half hour later, I furrowed my brow in confusion and worry. Celestia noticed this and spoke up "Luna, what is the matter?"

"There were supposed to be guards at the entrance. In fact the guards that were supposed to be here were from the Eclipse guard so they most assuredly wouldn't abandon their post without a good reason...this is worrying."

Celestia nodded her head. "Yes, this is troubling. Let us hurry inside."

The farther we traveled into the mine, the dimmer the lanterns that had been strung overhead got until, finally, they went out completely where the mine ended, and the strange cave began.

We paused for a moment at the entrance before Celestia spoke up "This metal is most strange. It looks brand new in some spots while it's rusted in others."

"I'm not going to even bother saying it." Luna said smugly.

As soon as they had all four hooves on the metal floor, an electrical charge ran the length of their bodies, followed by a strange voice coming from above them. "sEc--ur-r-r-r-........l-l-llllloc...."

"What on Terra was that?" Luna asked as a dull, pulsing red glow illuminated the corridor.

Celestia grimaced. "I don't know but I have a very bad feeling about this."

After five minutes of walking down the featureless corridor, I spotted a sickly green glow at the end of the corridor accompanied by the sounds of someone fighting.

I stopped moving. "Celestia...do you hear that?"

She tilted her head in the direction I indicated. ".....Yes...it sounds like....fighting?"

I looked at Celestia as a silent agreement passed between us. We galloped towards the sounds and came upon a grisly scene. On the other side of a clear barrier, surrounding a large tank with a strange creature floating in it, were the bodies of the guards and the miners. It seemed as if the miners attacked the guards and overwhelmed them. The guards had empty sockets where their eyes would normally be and their ears were bleeding. Most seemed to have been felled by injury to major arteries.

My face paled. "What....happened...." No matter what gruesome atrocities we witnessed throughout our innumerable years, they continued to repulse us.

"Look...over there..." Celestia pointed to the remaining guard who was fighting a miner.

The miner had several deep wounds along the side of his barrel. His right pupil was the size of a pinhead and where the other eye would be was a bleeding hole. The guard that he was attacking was guarding a large green disc next to the strange tank. He had small cuts covering his muzzle and he was limping. One of his wings was a bloody, tattered mess while the other was missing entirely and all that remained of his horn was a jagged stump.

The miner had a twisted grimace and a wild look in his eyes while stabbed at the guard with a jagged piece of metal

"Release the past to awaken the future. Blood paid will be a debt collected in time. Anarchy shall be our eternal salvation." He kept repeating this saying, as if it were a

I tried to use my magic to stop the crazed pegacorn from harming the guard any further but something was preventing my magic from affecting him. "What manner of trick is this!?" I exclaimed while scrunching my face in concentration and increasing my magical output.

"Luna stop!"

I opened my eyes to look at what she was pointing at and saw a thin stream of blue being drawn towards the tank in the room. I tried to look for where the stream was coming from but every time I moved my head, the stream would move too. It was at that moment I realized that my magic was being drawn to the tank, causing several lights on it to grow brighter.

We could do nothing but sit there and watch as the guard's movements slowed because of blood loss, and the deranged pegacorn cut his throat.

The pegacorn calmly walked over to the strange disc by the tank and pressed it. "Shed the past to awaken the future. Blood paid will be a debt collected in time. Anarchy shall be our eternal salvation." He said before he collapsed.

The tank hissed steam as the front of it lifted away to glowing, sickly green liquid with a dark shape in the center as the clear barrier was raised.

My sister rushed over to each of the guards to see if there was a chance to save any of them while I warily approached the tank.

'Is that creature.....alive?!' My eyes widened in shock as the creature began to move.

All the light in the chamber disappeared including the glow in the tank. "hahahahahah..." A deep, low, evil chuckle rumbled through the chamber.

My sister and I cast an illumination spell and I looked around the chamber for the source of the laughter, noticing the creature in the tank was missing.

"Show yourself!" I demanded.

"Now where's the fun in that? I think a game is in order instead. I do hope you can be more entertaining than the last group though." A light appeared, indicating the dead guards and miners.

"The last group?" Celestia 's eyes widened in shock before her right eye began to twitch. "WHAT DID YOU DO!" Her illumination spell became blinding and I raised a hoof to cover my eyes.

A slow clap was heard behind us "Ooooh! You will be far more fun then the last group!"

We whipped around to see who our enemy was but what stood before us perplexed me. It looked like many creatures smashed together, wearing a black top hat, monocle, and a black cane.

"I simply exerted a small bit of influence on their weak minds. Pity I can't do the same to you. But where are my manners? Discord, at your service!" He took the hat off his head and bowed before snapping, making them disappear.

"Now, since you were so rude as to watch me while I slept, I think I deserve a head start don't you hmmm?"

I was taken aback, my mouth open in shock. How could this....thing, be so casual about corrupting the minds of others?

"Any arguments? No? Good! I'm SO happy you agree!" He snapped his fingers and I was stricken with extreme fatigue. Moments before unconsciousness claimed me, I saw Discord's smile fade as he looked at something behind me. He snapped his fingers and after a strange flash of light, I fell asleep.

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I woke up to a pounding headache and a ringing in my ears.

I grabbed my head in between my hooves and shut my eyes tight as I attempted to remember what happened.

'There was a strange voice...then a red light...the dead guards, then--' A low growl formed in my throat. Discord... I said with as much venom in my voice as I could possibly muster.

As the headache went away and my hearing returned, I rose to my hooves and opened my eyes.

I looked around for my sister and saw her up ahead by the entrance. 'Wait entrance?'

"Sister, are you alright?"

"..."

"Sister?" I moved next to her and what I saw took my breath away.

Where the camp had been, only dirt remained.

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Twenty years later

A dark miasma permeated the air. I looked over the battlefield, staring at the corpses of both friend and foe, a hollow and defeated look reflected in my eyes as the moon slowly arced across the sky.

'So much death...and for what? No matter how many battles we win, we are no closer to defeating him than when we first met.' I thought dejectedly.

Twenty years ago when Discord was released, chaos, the likes of which no one had ever seen, was released into the world. In a matter of days, Discord had created an army of monsters.

They quickly took the border towns of the nations of the world. It was quickly discovered that no one nations army could defeat them. Only by working together were we able to win battles.

"Such great losses and still no closer to defeating Discord." Celestia had walked up next to me while I was deep in thought.

"That's exactly what I was thinking Celestia." I sighed and looked up at the night sky "No matter what we do, nothing seems to work."

"Your highness!" A pony was running up the hill towards us.

"Yes?" Celestia asked as he reached us, out of breath.

"A message for you from the medical tent!"

She grabbed the letter with her magic and opened it. As her eyes scanned over it, a spark that I hadn't seen in almost fifteen years shone in her eyes. A glimmer of hope.

"Celestia what is it!?" I said, my excitement rising.

"Dusk Keeper has returned. He succeeded in his mission..." Her voice trailed off.

My eyes widened slightly and I could not speak for several seconds. "You y-you mean then--"

"Yes. He found them." We galloped off to meet Dusk Keeper.

"But wait, why is he in the medical tent?"

"It doesn't matter. All that does is that he finally found them."

Dusk Keeper was a strange stallion that Celestia and I had met fifteen years ago during our search for a way to beat Discord. We had been exploring more of the strange, abandoned caves, similar to the one that Discord was housed in, in the hopes that if we found Discord in one of these caves then we may also be able to find the means to stop him in one as well.

Celestia had lay down to rest for a few minutes and urged me to not wait go on ahead of her to investigate the cave up ahead. I entered the cave and inside resided a zebra. It was immediately obvious that he was not what he seemed. In addition to the aura that surrounded him, the walls were made of a reflective crystal, creating a thousand different images, surrounding a large pool of water in the room that softly glowed, the center of which he sat at.

There was a pressure in the air that compelled me to step into the pool of water and reach out a hoof to touch him. As soon as I did however, I was frozen in place and his eyes snapped open, shining a blinding white. He turned and looked at me, my eyes locked with his and images and feelings began to flash inside my mind. Images of a forest, a pony, six golden orbs encrusted with jewels, a sense of direction an hope. Energy was dancing on and above the surface of the water. Magical power arced between me and this strange being that was very clearly not a zebra. The images and feelings kept playing in my head over and over again until they were permanently burned into my mind.

I fell to the ground, my nerves dancing with energy and a strange force in my mind gently nudging me towards something. I don't know how much time passed until my sister came into the cave. I heard her asking me what was wrong and I tried to answer, but my body was no longer responding to my commands. After several minutes of her trying and failing to cast spells, I was finally able to move my body again.

I inhaled sharply, finally able to take a full breath after several minutes.

"Luna you're okay!" Celestia happily exclaimed, hugging me.

"What happened?" She asked, her voice full of worry.

"There was a...."

"A what?"

"I..can't really remember. I remember coming into the cave, then walking into a pool of water, then..."

"...Then what?"

"I think I know where we need to go Celestia. I know where to go to find a way to stop Discord." I said with a hopeful smile.

Celestia's eyes widened, then she returned my smile. "Lead the way."

We traveled for three days, eventually coming upon a forest. We walked through the forest for a week, always following the ever present nudge in my mind. After three days, we found a cave with light spilling out the front. Inside we found a pegasus stallion sleeping by a fire. He had a red coat, a green mane and tail with a streak of red in each, and a dark blue band on his front right leg.

I took a step forwards and tripped over a rock, the sound reverberating in the large cave. His eyes snapped open in an instant, him snapping to his feet and his entire body tensing. He had a snarl on his face, but it was quickly replaced with a smile.

"Who goes there? Friend or foe?"

"We come in peace. We are but two travelers, seeking a tool against chaos." Celestia said.

His posture relaxed slightly and he beckoned us closer. "If you speak truthfully come and sit with me. Tell me as to why you have visited me."

"We have been searching for many weeks for a way to defeat the Lord of Chaos, Discord."

"Ah yes. Discord. My master warned of a creature named Discord five years ago. He said that he would bring ruin upon the world if not stopped."

Celesta's eyes narrowed in confusion. "How could your master possibly know of Discord though? He hadn't publicly declared himself to the world until three years ago."

He smiled warmly before responding. "He was a very powerful seer. But not just any seer! He was a dragon."

"A dragon? Why would a dragon ever take on a student outside of his own species?"

His face darkened and a small scowl replaced his smile.

He closed his eyes and took a deep breath "Normally I would not tell you but... my master said that if anypony were to ever come to me, asking for help to stop evil then I should answer any questions they may have."

He took a deep breath before continuing, speaking in a low monotone. "Six years ago, I was....less than stable. I would seek out fights and would brutally kill any that challenged me. I would bask in murder and begged for people to fight me so I would have a reason to kill them.

One day, I got too cocky and challenged a dragon to a fight. I quickly lost, for the first time ever. I waited for him to finish me but instead he offered to take me under his tutelage and teach me to control my more violent urges. He helped me learn to control the rage and bloodlust I inherited." He looked at his wings sadly. I then noticed the coloration on the leading edge looked off.

"What do you mean--"

"That is personal and does NOT concern you. I may not be able to lie but I can still conceal the truth. What does concern you, however, is the reason as to why you are here. You need something from me do you not?"

He clearly did not want to talk about this. "Yes. The past three years, the world has been waging wars against Discord in an effort to stop him."

"And how, pray tell, can I assist?"

I shifted uncomfortably on my hooves, which he took notice of and narrowed his eyes. "We are unsure as to how you may be able to help us But several days ago, something strange happened to me. I do not know what it was, but something started to guide me to you. I also received visions of six strange glowing, golden orbs, and what apparently was you. I do not know what these orbs are yet but I believe that they can stop Discord somehow and you are the key to finding them."

"And just why do you think this?"

"When I think of these orbs I am filled with a strange hope and conviction that they can defeat him. I have little reason to believe these visions, but I know that they can stop him. Also, anytime that I think of them, they are unwillingly followed by an image of you."

He appeared to ponder his decision for a few moments before stiffening and nodding his head.

As we exited the cave, a sudden realization dawned on me.

"You never told us your name." I asked this strange stallion.

He smirked at me "Dusk Keeper."

We sent Dusk on many exploration missions from that day on. Finding clues to where the orbs were located and information on them. We discovered their names, the Elements of Harmony, and that they were indeed a source of magic that could rival and even surpass Discord in power. After fifteen years of looking, it seemed that he had finally found them, or at the least where to get them.

The medical tent was a depressing thing. It was a dull gray and had a large blue cross on the side with a unicorns horn laying diagonally across it. The closer we drew towards the tent. the more the oppressive atmosphere increased, no doubt caused by the pain and suffering from physical wounds, and chaos magic. Wounded soldiers ringed the medical tent, some in beds while others forced to stand; the cries of the injured and dying was a constant reminder of the battle that had concluded only an hour prior.

When we entered the tent, our attention was grabbed by a nearby doctor.

"I assume you two are here for Dusk?"

"Yes." Celestia curtly replied.

"This way."

We followed the doctor to the only part of the tent that was closed off by a door. The sight that greeted us when we entered the room took my breath away. Dusk lay in bed, his eye and rear left leg missing but sat up straight when he saw us.

"Dusk...what happened." Celestia spoke slowly.

He bit his lower lip before looking away. "I don't want to talk about it. Suffice to say, I found them." He tilted his head in the direction of a silver case with six, bright, shining orbs resting inside.

Me and my sister walked over to it and I picked up one of them. "Such a small thing that embodies all of our hopes. Let's activate them!" I said, my voice full of hope.

"Luna. You want to activate them already? We have no idea what might happen. They might mistakenly identify us as an enemy and attack us! I know this is your project but Luna, have some sense!" Celestia said angrily.

The silence in the tent lasted for several seconds, broken only by the sound of my sister's angry breaths. "Celestia. You full well know that if this does not work, then we may as well give up against Discord. He has been toying with us for the past eighteen years. This is our last chance."

Celestia's face became somber. "You're right. If this does not work, then I doubt we can find another way to stop Discord, should he start seriously attacking."

We sat down and prepared ourselves to start.

We started casting a simple levitation spell on the Elements but as soon as our magic touched them, they reacted violently. The case began to shake along with the ground, and the Elements were giving off a soft, multi hued light and began to slowly float towards my sister and I.

The ground suddenly stopped shaking before resuming ten-fold, medical equipment falling over and cries of the wounded penetrated the tent. The tent darkened so that the only illumination was from the Elements. All at once, the ground stopped shaking and the tent grew pitch black before I felt three simultaneous impacts on my chest and heard my sister utter a small cry.

Light slowly returned to the tent, and as it did, I could feel something within me grow. I could feel it affecting my very being, changing the very core of my magic.

"Oh Tiiiiiiiaaaaaa, Looooooneeeeeey! Come out and plaaaaaaaaaay!" We heard a voice calling from outside.

"I felt some positively strange energy coming from here and I thought to myself, I should pay Lulu and Tia a visit! So, here I am!"

I glanced over at my sister top confirm my growing fears as to who this was and I noticed that she was softly glowing.

"Celestia are you glowing?"

"I could ask the same of you Luna."

I looked down and, sure enough, I was glowing.

"What? Why are we glowing and where are the Elements? I felt them hit us but

"If you won't come out and play with me I might just have to have some fun with these strapping young stallions."

We rushed outside of the tent and the sight that greeted us was horrifying. Discord was walking around, turning random ponies into different plants, animals, and inanimate objects. The worst part though was that he went around, turning any pegacorn into a unicorn and a pegasus. He split their being in half.

Uncontrollable rage rose within me. "DIIIIIISCOOOOOORD!" I yelled.

His head jerked up a the sound of my voice.

"Luna! Celestia! How good to see you! Have you been well?" He cheerily responded, as if he had not a care in the world.

I looked to Celestia and saw her glaring at Discord with death in her eyes, a low growl emanating from her throat and a grimace on her face.

Celestia responded by firing a magical beam at his face. "Oh come now that won't do--" He was cut off as the beam hit him square in nose, causing it to bleed and his head to snap back.

"That....hurt...HOW DID YOU DO THAT!" he snapped his fingers in a clear attempt to try and do something to us. "Why isn't it working!? How are you--"

I interrupted him by firing my own attack at him. "THAT'S IT! PLAYTIME IS OVER!" He shouted, snapping his fingers and turning everyone in the camp to ash.

Discord then went so far as to summon a gale that blew around the different pieces of the camp and the ashes that were once ponies. Realization of what that meant horrified us. They were essentially dead but they still lived on, their bodies and minds scattered across the world. It was a fate worse than death.

I felt something well up inside of my that I hadn't felt in many years. Pure, unadulterated rage, hate, and malice, all directed towards Discord.

The air began to spark with energy, and when I looked over at my sister, I saw that she shared my expression. The energy began to arc between my sister and me and we started to rise off of the ground.

"Luna. Ready the weeping darkness."

"Yes." I said, through clenched teeth.

As we began to charge the magical energy in our horns, I noticed that Discord was smirking, but when he snapped his fingers in what was an obvious attempt to stop us, nothing happened. A moment later he tried to move but he was rooted in place.

He noticed me staring at him and pointed a finger at me. "What did you do! Why can't I move?"

"Luna are you ready?" Celestia asked.

"Yes."

We released the energy from our horns but where there would normally be a stream of darkness, was a shining rainbow.

I tried to look at Celestia and ask her if she knew what was going on but my body was locked in position.

As the beam drew closer to Discord, fear began to show in his eyes.

"Where did you find them!? I DESTROYED them!" Were the last words that Discord would speak for over four hundred ninety thousand years.

The forces holding us up vanished and we fell to the ground. We lay there for several minutes recovering our strength. Whatever had happened with the spell had drained every last ounce of our strength.

After an hour of lying on the ground we had finally recovered enough to move and speak again.

"Luna, what happened?" Celestia asked groggily.

"I-I do not know. Celestia.....look." I pointed to Discord.

She looked at what I was pointing at and her jaw dropped in shock. Discord had been turned into a statue. We had...won.

"We...we won. We beat Discord." She said, awestruck.

I large smile grew on my face. "We won. We won! WE WON, WE WON, WE WON!" I was leaping into the air jumping with joy. We had beat Discord! The world would know peace for the first time in almost two decades! Celestia's expression mirrored my own and she too began to jump with joy.

My celebration was cut short, however, when I stepped onto a small metal ring. It was Dusk's bracelet.

Celestia noticed my sudden somber expression. "Luna what's wrong? We won! No more lives have to be lost!" She said as she approached me.

She looked down at what I was staring at and she recognized it. "That...that was Dusk's wasn't it?"

I nodded my head slowly. "Yes. It was."

I looked at her with tears in my eye's and a fiercely determined expression on my face. "Celestia." I took a deep breath. "We may have beaten Discord today but at a great cost. Thousands of lives were lost today along with all the lives lost in all the other battles. We must never forget that."

Celestia slowly nodded her head, the air growing somber. We sat down, watching the ashen remains of the ponies scatter to the wind like so many butterflies...

Author's Note:

Sorry for the delays! Took me a few days to get my glasses fixed and it was hard writing all that history. Hope you like it! Also, can anyone name and find the reference in here?

Comments ( 10 )

The main reason the last three paragraphs sound awkward is because you made them come after an unnecessary page break. There's no reason for the separation.

Also, get that last paragraph to emphasis blood form more and then you can effectively stop on the small revelation of why it's called blood form.

3310800 Yeah I wasn't entirely sure whether or not to include that last bit in this chapter or rewrite it completely in the next. Thanks for the criticism!

A much better ending. Far less jarring then shoving a page break in at the bottom for three little paragraphs. Now you can actually start and complete the thoughts on blood form in the next chapter.

The chapter that i'm looking forward to...

3323552 I've been looking for those tense shifts a lot because I remember messing that up quite a bit when I first wrote it. Besides that though what did you think?

3473972 All valid points. Yes I know my grammar is pretty sucky and I have no editor. Thank you for your criticism. As for how a body can look serpentine it could be the general outline and shape of their body for example.

3600505 Yeah. I'm aware that it's rather bad. That's why I've been rewriting it for the past two months now. Knew it was a grammatical nightmare so I stopped writing and started fixing it. Looking back at it over the past two months I came to realize how full of grammatical errors, poor description, and plot holes it was. Rewrites are nearly finished and I'm working on securing and editor. And what about the description turned you away from it? I'm fairly certain I know what it is but it would be helpful to get confirmation of what it is.

3600512
Well, it doesn't flow very well and it tells me next to nothing about the actual story.
While stories about a troubled teen are a dime-a-dozen, most of the really good ones here on FimFic are just that. Ya gotta either have some good gimmick or have good writing skills. Right now, from what I gathered in the first chapter, it is scratching on having a quirk that'll make it stand out(the prophesy of leaving his world is the neat twist.)

3896563 Eh, I know the quality is horrible. This was the first thing I have ever written, and when I started writing my grammar was atrocious. Clearly. I've been doing rewrites excruciatingly slowly, and have been thinking about scrapping it entirely and starting over. Keep the same premise, but make it a lot better. Not sure how I would do that, but I've been considering it. All the same, thank you for taking the time to give it criticism.

throwing the narrative into a cyclone of confusion.

I happen to love the way you described this, by the way. Made me chuckle.

oh i just wished storys this good would be finnished you know it could even be a hit

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