• Published 25th Oct 2011
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Heroes and Allies - LewisClarke



A great force threatens to destory Equestria and worlds beyond... Can two very diffrent peoples band together to stop it?

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Chapter Three: The Broken Window






Chapter Three: The Broken Window








Celestia's golden orb flooded the sky with its brilliant Glow...

...and Luna's shimmering sphere rested for the day.

A disgruntled earth pony grudgingly got out of bed. The journey he'd just returned from made his hooves sore, but it wasn't anything he wasn't used to. A large crash rang out from the lower floor of his home, nearly scaring the pony out of his second story window. Annoyed, he quickly rolled out of bed, his green and white mane completely disheveled.

Lime Tree hated to wake up like this, so he galloped downstairs, ready to combat the evil that dare attack his home. As soon as he reached the lower floor, he froze, unable to comprehend the scene in front of him.

“What the hay are y'all doing in my house!?” he demanded.

The ponies lying before him began to wake up. Lime noticed they all seemed to be sickly.

“Waah youu wannn?” groaned one of ponies.

Lime wasn't sure if that was a groan or an actual attempt at speaking, so he answered to the best of his ability.

“What I “wannn,” is to know is why you are all sleeping on my floor!”

The sleepy ponies seemed to shake off whatever was ailing them, and stood up.

“Oh, uh, sorry dude, but your welcome back party was just awesome! Pinks can chalk up another success!”

“The party, riiiiiiight,” Lime embarrassingly mumbled.

How could he have possibly forgotten that? He didn't do any obscene medicines, and he certainly didn’t drink, sarsaparilla or salt water. So why did last night seem so blurry? Suddenly, he remembered why he came down stairs in the first place. He turned around and gasped. The lower floor had been all but leveled.

“You broke two windows!? And why is there a crocodile in my sink!?”

“Actually, I think it's an alligator,” one of the “guest” stated in a scientific tone.

Lime was furious, but he tried to contain himself. “Why did Pinkie allow this?” he thought out loud. “Come to think of it, where is Pinkie?” He looked around, but saw no sign of Ponyville's premier pink party pony.

A magenta mare with fruit for a cutie mark stood up, then rubbed her head like she had just developed a migraine.

“She said something about there being a meeting of the Elements of Harmony or something,” she stated, still rubbing her head. “So they all left.”

“Wait, the rest of the elements were here?” Lime stammered.

“Yeah, you talked to them before they left,” the magenta mare answered.

If he hadn't been worried before, Lime certainly was now. Why couldn’t he remember this?

“Where did they say they were going?” Lime asked the mare.

“I kind of don't remember myself,” she mumbled.

“Canterlot.” one of the other party goers answered. “They told you that they were going to Canterlot. You seemed really annoyed by that, probably because you just came from there, right?”

Memories slowly leaked into the green stallion's mind, along with a migraine of his own.

“I think I remember now. I asked why they were going, and they told me it was a secret,” Lime whispered, fearing that speaking up might make his new headache worse.

“Either way, that was some party!” the magenta mare yelled, sending several ponies in the room into head-clutching agony.

Lime's “guests” had clearly drank every beverage within two miles of Ponyville, and the magenta mare must have somehow escaped the consequences. But why was his memory so clouded? According to the party goers, he hadn't drunk at all. He never did. He would have kept pondering this, but he noticed he was late for work.

“Why didn't I wake up at the same time I always do?” he quietly wondered.

He quickly ushered the guests out of his home, and thankfully, they kindly cooperated. After he grabbed a few of items from his room, he was off to tackle the challenges of the day. After all, as the Mayor's assistant, he never seemed to get a break.






*****************







Mayor Mare wasn't lazy, but she did send Lime on a wide variety of tasks she could have done herself. Then again, that’s what assistants are for. Today, his mission was to check up on the crop production that sustained the town itself, so at least this task was important. He realized that this would also allow him an excuse to ask the Apple family if they knew what was going on with the elements. His curiosity piqued, Lime decided to go to Sweet Apple Acres first.

This certainly wasn't the first time Lime had been sent to check on the family, but The Apples were famously reliable, so these checkups were more of a formality then a legitimate check. Lime just liked being able to get out of doing all the abysmally boring paperwork back at city hall. He would simply waltz in as he always did, take a rough inventory, then maybe try his hooves at a little apple bucking. As he reached the farm, he immediately noticed two things: one, he couldn’t hear the methodical taps of hooves on trees, and two, that the apple trees looked suspiciously un-bucked.

The very last thing you could call the Apples was lazy. “They are always at work if they can help it, so where are they now?” Lime wondered.

He gave the door a tap, and patiently waited for an answer. When none came, he realized that at this time, the young Apple filly, (Apple Boom was her name, right?) would be at school. Granny Smith would be fast asleep, and anyone else would be out bucking apples. Knocking was useless, so he wandered into the fields.

After about ten minutes of searching the massive orchard, he spotted his old high school buddy standing over a large hole. A smirk came to Lime's face, as he remembered those days, back when work was secondary, and nopony over worked themselves like he did now. He trotted up to the larger than life stallion, and raised a hoof.

“Hiya Mac, been a little while, eh?” the green stallion casually remarked.

The now “Big” Macintosh returned the bro-hoof without turning his head, and causally ignored Lime's question in favor of staring ahead, focusing intently on something in front of him. Confused, Lime looked ahead, trying to see what was so interesting. Mac noticed this, and pointed a hoof toward a large sinkhole. “Now what do ya reckon Is that?" Mac asked.

“Uh, a hole?” Lime answered, slightly amused by Mac's question.

“Ah see the hole. Ah'm talkin' bout what's in it,” Mac rebutted, clearly annoyed.

Lime focused in on what looked like bits of an old metal cart.

“Oh, sorry Mac. Well, let's go see, we won't find out sitting up here,” Lime impatiently quipped.

The two walked down, and gave the old cart a look over.

“This ain’t no cart. It's round," Mac stated, quite a stoic look on his face. “-and what do ya suppose “oohsa” means?” Mac wondered aloud.

“Maybe it's an acronym, you know, like the letters stand for something,” Lime answered.

Mac gave up, “Honestly, ah don't know, but ah ain't seen anythin' like it 'round here. Have you?"

Lime thought it over for a second. “No, but we need to record the farm's inventory, or the Mayor won't be happy with either of us. Whatever this thing is, it'll have to wait.”








******************







A royal Guard entered the throne room of Canterlot Palace, rigid and methodical as ever.

“Your highness, the elements have arrived,” He spoke in his typically deep and serious voice.

He noticed that the Princess's horn was glowing. He also noticed a text-book “thousand-yard stare” on her face. She didn't seem to be listening.


“Princess, did you hear me? ...Princess? ...PRINCESS!?”

No answer.

The guard exchanged worried looks with the other guards at the door. They didn't seem to know what was going on either.

“Should I let them in?” the guard asked the others. “Is that against protocol?”

“I'm not sure, but what harm could come of it?” one of the chamber guards remarked.

“I'll try to snap her out of it first.” the first guard muttered as he trotted up to the throne. He wondered if this had something to do with the disturbance she was going on about to Princess Luna earlier. He then looked right into the alicorn's eyes, and waved his hooves trying to get her attention.

No response. Her eyes betrayed no emotion whatsoever.

“It's like she's asleep!” the guard stammered, dumbfounded by the sight in front of him.

Celestia's horn stopped glowing, and the guard stepped back, waiting for her to move.

“There's nothing,” Celestia mumbled to no pony in particular.

“There's nothing in what, princess?” The guard asked.

“Oh. It's nothing, really.” Celestia quietly replied.

“Princess, are you all right?” a relieved guard asked.

She put her head in her hooves for a few seconds and weakly smiled. “Yes, I'm fine. In fact, all seems to be well. Don't bother sending for the elements.”

The guard looked up at the princess, his worried look returned. “Your highness, we already sent for them, and they are waiting outside as we speak.” He gestured toward the door.

“Well then, I guess we should let them in,” Celestia decided.

The guard bowed and turned away. A few seconds later, six familiar mares entered the throne room.

Celestia looked up, “Greetings, my little ponies. You sure arrived quickly,” she remarked.

“When you sent word for us, we all got together and came as quickly as we could.” came the words of a certain lavender unicorn. She and those accompanying her bowed in respect. The princess levitated some chairs into the room.

“Please sit down, Twilight, Applejack, Rainbow Dash, Rarity, Fluttershy, Pinkie Pi-”

Celestia looked around. “Where is Pinkamena?” she asked.

Celestia turned around to see Pinkie Pie feasting on food made for a banquet that was to be held in honor of an old war hero. One slightly unamused glance from Celestia was enough to get Pinkie to quietly trot back over to the group.

“Now that you're all here, we'll be able to-”

Celestia heard a youthfully giggle from a distinctly Luna-like source.

“Anyway, now that you are all here, we can discuss a strange sickness that swept over the kingdom recently. Did any of you feel sickly the last few days, specifically at night?" Celestia asked.

“I slept comfortably as always,” spoke Rarity. "I had a large order to fill, so I was quite tired."

“Ah was out apple buckin' last night, ah didn't notice anything,” Applejack added.

The others were silent, and Celestia looked uncharacteristically nervous. “So none of you felt anything?” she asked.

Twilight looked up and put one of her hooves on her chin in thought. “I had a slight headache while I was studying,”

Celestia's hopes rose.

“But that happens a lot if I don't get enough sleep, and I'm pretty sure that session was an all-nighter,” Twilight added.

The princess's face fell.

“Umm, is it something dangerous?” Fluttershy timidly squeaked

“Well no, but-” Celestia began.

Rainbow Dash suddenly interrupted, “If ponies are getting sick, why do ya need us? Shouldn't you call the Elements of Nerdishness or a doctor or something? I mean really-”

Rainbow Dash would have kept talking, but another unamused look from Celestia made her instantly clam up.

“If I may, princess,” Twilight began. “It does seem a bit odd that you flew us up from Ponyville for something like this.”

Celestia's mood seemed to improve, then she answered Twilight’s question with a one breath word streak that even got Pinkie's attention:

“Well yes, it does seem odd now, but earlier I was worried that it was a serious epidemic, and I didn't want anything like that to happen, and calling you all up here seemed like a good idea at the time, I told them to disregard my summons, but you were already here, I'm sorry that you came here for nothing, but at the same time, it's good to see you all, you know we don't seem to meet as often as we should, maybe we should have scheduled meetings, like parliament, don't you think?"

After that blatant disregard for the rules of run-on sentences, it was clear that the princess was stressed. Twilight and her friends all stared at a bewildered Pinkie Pie, amazed that those weren't the party pony's words.

Applejack recovered from the Sun Mare's verbal assault first. “Well, ah guess we can find somethin' ta do in tha mean time, if it's okay with ya.”

The princess regained her composure and turned around to see the tail end of a dark blue alicorn dashing away with what looked like a mood altering spell book.

“Luna...” Celestia muttered. “But yes, you are free to leave. Sorry to bother you all,” she responded, a bit annoyed.

As the elements began to file out, a pony very few liked blasted his way into the throne room. The white stallion's interruption was so sudden in fact, that even the guards flinched as he entered. He was out of breath, and quivering, but tried to maintain his long gone dignity anyway.

Standing before the princess was Prince Blueblood himself. His mane was an abysmal wreck of the blonde variety, and his coat was covered in soot, like somepony had used him as a chimney sweep. Whatever the problem, it was bound to make an interesting story.

“Princess! Auntie! It-it was horrible! I was just minding my own business, telling the servants to stop being so forceful with my massage. They said that they were just making sure they got the kinks out, but I think they're up to no good. And-”

“What happened?! Tell me what happened!” Celestia almost yelled.

“M-My house exploded!” Blueblood managed to finally say. “It was calm, quiet even. Then suddenly, smoke everywhere!"

“Where were your guards!?” Celestia demanded.

“Well, they were out, umm, uh... I sent them to find better masseuse ponies actually,” Blueblood admitted. “But I think they're helping the CFD put out the fire as we speak.”

Realizing that a fire could damage surrounding houses and the city at large if left unchecked, Celestia stood up and flared her wings, preparing to fight the fire herself. However, just as she was about zoom out of the castle, a scroll materialized in front of her. It was marked urgent, and bore the unmistakable clawriting of Spike, Twilight’s faithful assistant. Celestia flew up to one of the throne room's higher windows and noticed that the fire seemed to be under control, she also noticed a streak of cloud vapor which led straight toward Blueblood's abode, and began from the distance. Confidant that the fire was taken care of, she sat back down on her throne, opened the letter, and read it aloud:






Dear Princess Celestia, (and Twilight and friends)

Something weird just happened. Something flew over Ponyville faster than anything I’ve ever seen before. It kinda looked like a shooting star, or maybe a really big fireworks thing. Either way, it started losing control and zoomed all over the place! It kind of reminded me of Pinkie Pie for some reason. Anyway, it looked like it landed somewhere near Canterlot, so I was wondering if everypony is alright. Are you okay up there?"

Your faithful student's faithful assistant,

-Spike





“I don't suppose that was a coincidence.” The princess looked down at a now hyperventilating Prince Blueblood. “What do you think, students?” she asked.

“I think Spike is lying!” Rainbow angrily yelled.

“What!?” came the collected response from all the other ponies in the room.

“I mean, nothing is faster than me!” Rainbow explained.

Even Blueblood rolled his eyes at that one. Celesta sent Spike a letter in return, assuring him that everything was under control, and that he shouldn’t worry. She then lit the paper on fire with her horn and sent it on its way.

“Ah always wondered how you did that,” Applejack remarked with a hoof on her chin. “-but what do you think all this means?” she asked.

A pink pony made her presence known: “That is the best prank EVER! Shooting fireworks into that meany Prince Blueblood's house, PRICELESS!” Pinkie rolled over on the floor in a fit of giggles.

Blueblood just stared. "I'm right here!"

“Princess," Twilight started. "I don't like the sound of this. With your permission, I would like to go to the royal library to study this. Perhaps I can find an answer before it happens again,” she humbly offered.

“W-W-What should we do, princess?” asked Fluttershy, true to her name.

“I truly don't know. But I want the rest of you to check out what was the prince's house.” Celestia looked up, “We may be looking at the first attack on Equestrian soil in decades!”








*****************







“You may be looking at the first images of an alien world ever taken by humanity!”


Commander Stuart along with the rest of NASA's Anomalous Energy Event Team, were smiling so hard it literally hurt. So they stopped smiling and began an analysis of the little video and picture footage the successful probes managed to acquire. It had now been a few days since the first successful probes entered anomalies. The most recent data was from the third successful probe, and now, new challenges awaited them.

After what was possibly the best day at work anyone had ever had, the AEE team went home, leaving the commander to dwell with his thoughts, and read over his journal.


Day 341

The DeltaScout II exploded upon entering the scheduled anomaly, but the data it recorded is the most useful yet. It seems our theory was correct. The resistance an object encounters when entering an anomaly is relative to its speed. The DeltaScout II was designed to enter at a slower speed about Mach .75. It encountered twice as much resistance as The DeltaScout I, which was traveling almost twice that speed. Theoretically, if a probe enters an anomaly at approximately Mach 3.1 or higher, the resistance should no longer be a problem. We are already building The DeltaScout III.

Day 389

We have Success! The DeltaScout III entered an anomaly and sustained contract for 21 seconds. This was just long enough to confirm that the location beyond these anomalies is NOT on our planet. The camera worked just long enough to take a single frame shot and radio it back to us. It was quite distorted, but a picture none the less. I think I made out a tree! For now, we will send in more probes, advancing their design until we get real data to work with.

Day 432

As of now, The DeltaScouts III, IV, and V have all successfully entered anomalies. However, they all seem to fail after traveling a few miles inside one. It seems maintaining radio contact through to the other side of these “portals” is difficult at best, and nonexistent at worst. They will no doubt call me a mad man when I reveal my answer to this problem, but hopefully it will all turn out well.







*****************







“You're Crazy!” 1st Lieutenant Lenard Greene yelled in shock.

“Please, just listen to me!” the commander began, “A manned mission is the only way to find out what's really in there!” he tried to explain.

“Everything we sent into that thing either exploded or is currently missing, neither of which I would like to be!” Greene argued.

“Can't we send in a few more probes first?” 2nd Lieutenant Michael Kaiser wondered aloud.

“The bottom line, is that probes depend on outside radio contact. Living people do not. If a manned aircraft and pilots could penetrate the barrier, he or she could take pictures, record data, and make observations that no probe could!” Stuart retorted.

2nd Lieutenant Gerri Reed shook her head. “The real bottom line, is that innocent people, more or less, could be killed making those observations. You have no idea what being in there would do to a person.”

“We can't send animals in a probe because we would have no way of knowing if they survived or not! And those probes would still need remote control, which we established doesn't work very well! A pilot doesn't need remote control. You could simply turn the plane around and fly back through once you're done making your observations. The probes can't do that, even if we programmed them to,” the commander explained.

Lenard was indignant “There is no way this is happening, they can't make someone do it, and who would possibly volunteer to do something like this!?”







****************







“Captain!” an airfield worker yelled. “The aircraft are ready, and the rest of your team is waiting for you in the meeting house for the final briefing.”

The now "Captain" Greene jumped down from his perch atop the wing of the fighter he made history in not too long ago. All they had done was scan a big ball of energy for a few minutes, and flown down to deliver the data they got. Yet somehow, he and his friends had all become celebrities. They promoted the then Lieutenant Greene to captain, in light of his volunteering to enter an anomaly. He would be flight leader, while his friends flew in alongside. According to the scientist, sending in three fighters as opposed to one, would somehow improve the odds that at least one of the planes would get through. He didn't want to think about what that said about their odds, but the pilot knew that if he survived this mission, he and his friends would be immortalized among the likes of Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin and the like. If they failed, he and his friends could be killed or stranded on some alien world for the rest of their lives.

“I’m not sure I'm ready for any of that,” Greene thought. “-but I’m not about to let that stop me now.”

He walked towards the meeting house, and put on his best “determined adventurer” face.








****************






Mike Kaiser walked down to The Contrail, a local bar that some of the pilots and other military personnel frequented. He sat down next to a burly uniformed man. The man had a slowly healing scar going down the right side of his face, and wore sunglasses in a futile effort to hide it.

"It's good to see you again, Steve," Mike stated in a failed attempt to sound cool and collected.

The large man turned to the pilot. "So, I guess this is it, huh? I might not ever see ya again, bro. You here to finally give me that twenty bucks you owe me?" the scarred man asked.

Amazed that the conversation had moved towards his debt so quickly, Mike reached into his pocket and pulled out a brand new twenty dollar bill.

"I just want to give you this before I went up, you know, just in case," Mike muttered.

"I understand, man. Good luck." The scarred man finally spoke.

The two shook hands, and the young pilot walked out towards the briefing room, for the final mission briefing.

As he left, the scarred man, Corporal Steven Mace of the United States Marines, looked down at the twenty dollar bill in front of him. It seemed that Mike had left him a note:

"I will never bet against you again, although I hope I'll get the chance. See you around, Corporal."

The marine chuckled to himself and took a sip from his drink.








******************







Dear Mother and Father,

I could call you, but I thought that this letter would be much more valuable. There's not really much to say. I'm not very good at writing letters, or explaining myself, but I love you guys. I guess that's really all I'm trying to say. Please don't get mad at me if I don't come back. I want to do this, so I hope you'll understand. I love you all.

-Love, "Gerri Berry."

Gerrianna Reed.

P.S. Don't let Bret have my old room if I don't come back.







*****************








Pilots, officers, and reporters filled into the meeting house for the final mission briefing. Some looked confident, others seemed tense, but everyone seemed ready to see what would happen.

"Good afternoon, ladies and gentlemen," Commander Stuart Began. “As you know, these F-15 "Intrepid" prototypes will get you to the necessary entry speed of Mach 3.1. And because of this, they handle differently than a typical '15. You've flown them in practice flights before, but be careful, and remember to keep them steady. Your mission is to accelerate to entry speed, enter the portal as it forms over this very base, and activate the plethora of sensors and instruments that have been fitted to these planes. You will continue to scan for exactly one minute, turn around, increase speed to Mach 3.1, and return to base to a hero's welcome. We have no reason to believe that the environment will be harmful to you, for that, you have the probes to thank. Hopefully, you will all have an easy flight and be back in this room in ten minutes. You all know what to do, now get to your planes. Godspeed you three.”

With a salute from every officer and enlisted man and woman in the room, and a crowd of people gathered around the airfield fence hoping to capture piece of history with their camcorders and phones. The pilots walked silently to their planes and strapped themselves in. Scientist and mechanics alike, clapped for them as they each closed their canopies, still silent. It seemed that none of the pilots wanted to speak, in fear that the words they might utter would be, “I changed my mind!” or "Let's rethink this!" But instead, they all proceeded to ignite their heavily modified twin engines. As each hummed to life, each pilot realized that there was no turning back now. They taxied their aircraft onto the tarmac, and Lenard said a sentence he was sure he and everyone else would never forget.


…. “This is Intrepid-Sparrow Leader, requesting permission to take off.”....

…. “Intrepid-Sparrow, check all flight surfaces and controls.”.....

…. “Flight check complete, repeat, Flight check complete.”....

Lenard and his friends now heard the President of the United States' voice on the radio, as well as several other world leaders.

…. “What you do today, regardless of the outcome, will define a generation.” …..

…. “We are all very proud of you.” ….

…. “I know it's cliche, but Godspeed pilots.”....

….. “Intrepid-Sparrow, you are clear for takeoff.”...


A thunderous roar filled the area as the three Pilots throttled up their engines. Lenard was first to get airborne, closely followed by his two wingmen. Just overhead, a flash ignited the sky, and the now all too familiar sight of an anomalous energy event appeared. The pilots flew away from it to give them space to accelerate.

…. “This is Intrepid-Sparrow. We have reversed course and are lined up for a perfect run to the target.”....

…. “This is it.”....

Inside the cockpit of the leading aircraft, Lenard Greene hoped that those wouldn’t be his final words. The three fighters slowly accelerated until they were just under the target speed. As the amazing sight of an anomaly up close became larger and larger, Lenard maxed out the throttle, and the instruments confirmed that Mach 3.1 had been successfully reached. Looking ahead, Lenard made his peace with God, just the nose of his aircraft disappeared into the blue energy.

…..“Now there's definitely no turning back now.”....


There was a loud "booming" sound.

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