• Published 30th Sep 2013
  • 14,855 Views, 445 Comments

Break of Dawn - SupaSqueegee

Cale was just a normal guy. Mid twenties, decent job, his own place. Nothing special. But one morning he vanished, only to wake up in the mystical world of Equestria. Meeting Celestia, he'll find that his life will never be the same again.

  • ...

Welcome to Equestria

Cale had never been the type of person to shy away from his responsibilities. Oh, no. He was the very definition of responsible: He never called in sick to work; he was never one to shy away from family or friends. But today, something just didn't feel right.

Sure, his alarm went off at the same time as it did every morning - right at 6:00 A.M. - and he gingerly reached out of bed to silence his phone, much like he did many mornings. The only difference with this morning, as opposed to all the rest? Every time he closed his eyes, all he could think about was this other world.

This crazy place with talking horses, magic, and splendor. This 'other world' he had somehow created in his head had been the focus of most of his attention for the past week.

It started out simple enough: A few daydreams here and there, and maybe some doodles while he was watching TV. But last night was the first time this other world had consumed every fiber of his very being. And the strangest thing about it? He had felt, just for a moment, as if this place was real.

With a grunt, he rolled out of bed and sleepily walked to his bathroom, flipping the light switch groggily. He stifled a yawn as he did so. Today was going to be a long day.

When he looked in the mirror, he saw what he always saw in the morning. His tall, slightly tanned self in nothing but his pajama pants. His ruffled, medium length brown hair, and olive green eyes. He wasn't particularly fit - having some extra weight around his midsection - but he was far from fat. All in all, even with the shade of stubble gracing his cheeks and neck, he just looked like an average twenty-something.

That was, of course, until he noticed that he was starting to turn transparent.

At first, he thought it was just from a lack of sleep, but upon a closer inspection... yeah, sure enough, he was. He could see right through his chest to the closed shower behind him. "The hell?"

He took a step back and looked down to his hands, panic starting to register in his brain as he began to rapidly fade right in front of his own eyes. With a defeated look, he moved his eyes back up to the mirror for one last glance. Fear etched solid lines of tension across his face, his voice frozen in his throat.

Then, just like that, the apartment was empty. All that could be heard was the snooze from his phone's alarm going off once again.

Celestia blearily blinked awake, looking around her darkened chamber with a light sigh of defeat. Once again it seemed that sleep had evaded her for most of the night, and what little sleep she had gotten was plagued with nightmares. There was some... creature haunting her. It was scared and alone. It was in a place it had never been before.

She made a mental note to speak with her sister about these dreams sooner rather than later. If she continued getting as little sleep as she had been getting recently, then she was bound to start making some errors in judgement when it came to her rule. Princess she may be, she never claimed to be infallible. She had plenty of experience from all her years to help guide her, but when fatigue settled in, all of that knowledge and calm started to fail her.

Pushing herself out of her strange chain of thought, she lumbered out of her massive bed and made her way to the open balcony by her chambers. As always, Luna stood there overlooking the kingdom as Celestia stepped into the brisk, morning air.

Luna glanced at Celestia. “Sister, you are awake; did you sleep well last night?”

She arched an eyebrow, peering at Celestia once again as Celestia stood beside Luna in the waning light of the moon. Already Celestia’s magic was taking hold, and the barest hint of daybreak over the horizon made itself known. "Although on second glance... you don't look all that well," Luna said. "Is something tormenting you? A bad dream?"

With a roll of her eyes Celestia focused on the task at hoof, her elongated horn glowing with a golden aura as the sun slowly made its way into the sky. “I should have known that you would have known about that.” Sparing the smallest of glances to her sister, Celestia whispered softly, “do you know what it is that is causing these nightmares?” She tried to convey the small glimmer of hope in her voice.

Luna shook her muzzle, her dark eyes staring into the rising sun. After a moment’s thought, however, she sighed. “I am not entirely certain of your plight. I have never before seen in such a creature as what follows you in your dreams.”

Celestia sighed in return, finishing her morning ritual, the sun now set in its path for the day. She turned toward her sister once the sun was moving across the sky, giving Luna her full attention. “Luna...this troubles me. I feel as if these dreams are pointing towards something important. They feel almost...prophetic. The last time dreams caused me to lose so much sleep was when you were returning as Nightmare Moon. It was then the Elements of Harmony came to me in my dreams.” She shook her head. “While I doubt this means anything quite so dangerous... it still worries me.”

Luna shook her head once again, turning her muzzle to look into Celestia's eyes. She looked away sadly soon afterwards. “Sister... ’Tia. I... I wish I knew what to tell you. But I can't. I'm sorry.”

With an apologetic nod, Luna took wing, flying off of the balcony into the dawn sky. Celestia watched Luna go, her thoughts occupied on the reoccurring dreams from the past nights. They wouldn't go away.

“Luna…” Celestia shook her head and turned back to her bedchambers. She had a long day ahead of her, and she needed to compose herself beforehoof.

Cale took a deep breath and looked around for what felt like the hundredth time since he woke up in the strange forest he currently found himself. “Okay. So I see myself disappear in my apartment, then I come to in the middle of nowhere. Weird forest, weird noises. This has got to be a bad dream.”

He had been walking for the better part of an hour, and was reaching a point where he felt he needed to rest. The canopy of the dense forest rose high above him, and all he could see in any direction was more trees. There didn’t seem to be an end in sight. One thing he could be thankful for, if nothing else, was the fact that the ground was lushly coated with grass. His feet were spared from the bite of the rough earth and undergrowth underneath him.

Having been transported to this weird... place with nothing on but his pajama bottoms certainly wasn’t ideal, but he was coping the best he could. It could be worse.

He just wasn’t sure if this was real or not. After he had woken up in the forest he had gone through the basic procedures to see if he was dreaming: Pinching himself, trying to fly, etc. But nothing proved to bear any fruit. So he just started to walk.

Hunger was starting to get the best of him, though. He didn’t have time to eat breakfast before this happened. He hadn’t been able to do much of anything, truth be told, and he was still tired from his lack of sleep. The forest was proving to be more difficult to navigate than he’d originally thought as well.

“That’s it, I’m through.” Throwing his hands up in defeat he plopped down on his rump, leaning back against the nearest tree. “There’s got to be something here. Something to let me know where I am.” But as he looked around he was once again reminded that there wasn’t anything he could immediately recognize.

He wasn’t a botanist by any stretch of the imagination, so the fact that the plant life all seemed foreign to him didn’t really register. The biggest thing that took him aback was the weather. It was warm here. Almost to the point of being downright hot. And the humidity was rather high too. That didn't make any sense. It was the middle of winter where he lived.

“So I’m either on the other side of the globe, or I’m losing my mind. Not like either of those really make much sense,” he grumbled.

Not really knowing what else to do, he continued to sit where he was, arms crossed over his chest. With a resigned sigh he closed his eyes After a couple of minutes he started to drift off.

That’s when he heard the roar.

Celestia had just taken to the small throne she used in the conference hall when a sharp chill shot down her spine. It was so intense that her eyes shut themselves to fight off the insane fear that had gripped her. She barely heard the guard to her left as she spoke.

“...Princess? Princess is everything alright?”

With a shake of her head she opened her eyes and looked over to the clearly nervous pony. A tightly forced smile pulled across Celestia's lips. “I’m fine, Star Chaser.” Her voice held a small tremble, and it took everything she had just to compose herself. “You may show in my first appointment.”

Star Chaser nodded and trotted towards the large double doors. She had just about reached them when she heard a loud gasp. She turned around and crouched down into a defensive position out of instinct, her amber eyes scanning the hall.

But the one thing she expected to see was no longer there.

Celestia’s throne was vacant.

All Cale could do was run. Run and run and run.

His breathing was hard and shallow, his heart beating roughly against his chest. The sounds of pursuit followed close on his heels. “The hell is that thing?!” he screamed to no one but himself.

When he had opened his eyes only moments before he had found himself face-to-face with one of the biggest creatures he had ever experienced. It had the head and body of a lion, bat like wings, and a scorpion tail of all things! What else was he supposed to do but get up and flee for his life?

He had narrowly managed to jump out of the way of the beast's tail again, but his foot caught on a tree root, causing him to tumble to the ground with a grunt of pain. He barely managed to turn over in time to see the monster leap at him.

With wide eyes he watched, as if in slow motion, the end of his life drawing close. That was when the sun exploded behind him.

The intense light flung the creature away as if it were made of paper mache, and Cale could only close his eyes to the brilliance that seemed to engulf him. Finally the light seemed to die down, and the human slowly opened his eyes.

His breath exhaled all at once and, fearfully, he looked up at this new creature standing above him. It was a white horse with gold adornments, large wings, a horn, and a flowing, ethereal mane and tail of prismatic colors.

This... mystical creature was staring down at him with the same, confused expression he suddenly found himself wearing. They stared at one another for a few long moments before it did something he did not expect.

It opened it’s mouth and asked, in a very feminine yet powerful voice, “what... and who, are you?”