• Published 29th Jan 2014
  • 1,218 Views, 18 Comments

Fallout: Equestria - Beyond the Looking Glass - Prorook363



A Crystal Pony is plunged into the Equestrian Wasteland alongside her Stallion companion and must endure the hardships of a cold, desolate world. But how long can innocence thrive in a world of dread and misery?

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I. Flawless Amethyst

“Out she crawled from the Rabbit’s hole, only to find herself stumbling into the Lion’s den…”

Life flows by me like a distant memory, much like the stars that reside above Equestria. And like the stars, some memories grow more vibrantly and ecstatically then others. But that does not mean the stars are absent.

They are present, alive, but it is darkness that hinders their true potential. I remember a time when all memories were but dull sirens, blaring aloud as they tried to break through the thundering sound of nothingness. Such can be processed, but it is best to foretell of the memories from the very beginning, in a time where I was much younger, in a tone where I was once naïve.

{***}

I was born inside a Stable, Stable 78 to be exact. A safe haven known to everypony, to the point where I don’t need to explain what it is – or why they were needed. Our home succumbed to war, and as a result it died. That was the dream and that was the truth. That’s why we lived deep within the Stables, and that’s what we were taught deep within our Stables. Well, that’s what the others were taught. Me, I was taught nothing more but to remain pure and unscathed by the touch of others.

That is because I am what is referred to as a crystal pony.

When I was born, I was told that my heavenly glow was so bright it lit the entire room like a celestial light. My birth marked the beginning of a new hope. My condition rendered me as the chosen one.

That’s why my name is Starlight.

The context of my meaning weighed so little importance on me as I grew older though. I was always in good care, and I never bothered to think beyond the walls of my comfort zone. I was constantly bathed, always fed, and adorned luxurious clothing. I was never given a role, an assignment, a Stable jumpsuit, or a pip-buck. I was a goddess amongst ponies, and I felt loved by all.

At least, I thought I did. Soon, as I reached a certain age, the underlying facts of reality began to tear the fabric of mine. I began to see behind the curtain, and notice that all did not seem well. I was told that there were ponies who once had the same glowing ability as I did, but when I asked what became of them, they ignored my question.

In time, I was told that soon all was to come and pass, and that all luxuries would be taken from me in place of a greater gift, one that outweighed all materials within the stable.

At first I was fascinated, pondering on what could have exceeded the values of such glorious goods. As I asked, they smiled gloriously as they praised the word with grace.

“Sacrifice” they said, and at that moment, I felt something deflate within my body…

…Because I had no clue what that was. Such a gift seemed so simple for my materialistic mind. I expected jewels, accessories. So I wanted to know more.

I asked them what such a thing was, and they too looked as lost as I did.

So they explained.

Explicitly.

And my jaw dropped. My eyes widened. My lips trembled. And then I began to cry.

I wept and I wept. I ran. I hid from these ponies who tried to sell me a one-way ticket to death. They chased after me, sending unicorns to magically restrain me as I began to sob and moan.

“You should be honored” they cooed as they managed to subdue me with an anesthetic, “your gift has offered this Stable the opportunity to live on, and in your name too. You should be happy…”

But I was not happy.

My perpetual glow radiated within my dim lit room as tears flowed onto the floor every day. I was but a kindled candlelight in the darkness, my crystalline coat protecting me from the dark shadows attempting to reach my heart. My glimmer shone on even through the darkest nights, and it soothed me when the nightmares tried to creep into the confines of my mind, but never could it truly ease the fair welling inside my nimble frame.

I did not want to die. I loved life to well. Everything was so grand, so perfect – I just didn’t want to give it up now.
But the fear was overwhelming. As time passed, an unfathomable sensation of dread came over me, accompanied with the sinister voice of wickedness. My mind began to play tricks on me, taunting me as I counted the seconds that flew by without meaning or purpose.

My mind wanted me to end my pain. It hurt as much as I did. But I grew fearful of it, for what it wanted me to do. It wanted to end the suffering…and that made me cry ever more.

Seeing that their symbol of hope would be killed by depression rather than their own hooves, the overmares pulled a few strings and allowed me what they conceived as a “grand opportunity”: they let me roam the halls of the Stable freely, so I could think upon the subject…

It made little difference. Wandering the halls by ponies I hardly knew was a feeling like no other. They watched me as if I was a holy item, unfit for their eyes or hooves. I attempted discussions (sometimes secretly trying to understand why I had to die) but they made short remarks and casted their eyes down to the floor.

My death was to signify their hope and they gave that fact little significance. I felt worthless, and my depression only deepened. I stopped wandering the halls and isolated myself and my mind in my corridor. The only ones who seemed to care, were the very things that wanted to kill me.

I had grown accustom to examining myself in the mirror, catching the slightest glimmers from my shimmering light blue coat or crystalline whit mane as if they were stars, and wishing upon their existence that I did not have to die.

On one particular day however, I caught a dark red stallion with a shady blue mane come into my room from the corner of the mirror. My sullen yellow irises had grown accustom to the dull shades within my room, and his vibrant texture quickly rejuvenated my tired eyes.

I quickly whirred around and flashed a heavy smile in his direction as I waved my hoof towards him. He remained unresponsive for a short while, but soon waved back in response, which shook something inside of me.

I truly met somepony for the first time.

That day marked the beginning of a long friendship I would always cherish. That day, he came in telling me that he really wanted an opportunity to meet me, and that he had pulled many strings just to see me.

I found myself smiling and laughing hysterically as he began to explain his presence to me. All his struggles and his triumphs – I felt truly important to somepony.

After his explanation, I quickly asked him what was it that he wanted to see me about, and he only responded with three simple words: “Just to talk”

So that’s what we did. We talked.

I was ignorant of everything beyond the walls of my room. This stallion, whose name I discovered was Orion, told me of the ponies of the Stable, what was there to do, and the routines that were to be followed. He answered many questions I had, but that day I refrained from asking the one question that had burned in my mind for so long. This moment was just too great to screw up.

“Would you like to play baseball one day?” he asked. He explained to me the sport, and I was very intrigued, so I quickly nodded my head in response.

“Yes, today!” I said ecstatically. He was caught off guard by my demand, but he did not wave it off. He smiled, nodded his head, and walked me out of my cell.

I felt free and relieved and it was a great feeling.

The days that followed, I would find myself frequently playing baseball with Orion. There was no end to our Stable adventures. We were alive, full of life, and full of happiness.

I soon began to know Orion, know him for what kind of pony he was. He was like no other; he spoke with such enthusiasm and charisma that it was enough to characterize his confidence as a whole. But he was not arrogant. He had this humble image that could not be tainted, for he had a heart true to goodness. And that was another thing. Orion was a stallion of wisdom. Being so young, I found it impossible to think a stallion like him could think like how he did. It was a strange combination, a flourished product that expressed a leader. I came to respect this pony, who had just about the same amount of respect for me.

Ponies began to talk, and thoughts began to ascend, but that meant nothing because soon I found myself talking to all these ponies without issues. Mares and colts would come to play baseball games and soon that would turn into small league tournaments. I became an equal, and soon everyone was able to see me as a pony. I felt truly wanted.

As the days shifted into months though, and my bonds with the Stable became stronger and stronger, the Overmares quickly cracked down on what they thought would be an issue. It came suddenly one day, when Orion did not come, and the only voice that greeted me was an indifferent tone from the intercom, reminding me that death was but only weeks away.

Death had come, and months of healing became undone as I became to drown in my sorrows. I screamed at the intercom for telling me of my inevitable demise and I bashed it with my hooves repeatedly. Defeated, I crawled back into my bed that day and cried as I realized all the friends I had made were to be plucked from me by the hands of death. Soon everyone became nothing more but lifeless silhouettes.

Time waited for his hand to land on my hour, and he moved so feverishly it was as if he longed for my death. I could not come to comfort with death, so I knew not what to do.

Suppressed thoughts returned, and I replayed the words of old ponies in my head, telling me that the crystal ponies before me were honored to go and die for their Stable, and held such valiant hearts with what they knew would become of them. They gave no reason to their sacrifice, only that it was all for a “greater good.”

That was not me. I did not want to sacrifice myself for others. I had no pride, I loved life too dearly. I hated death, the very existence of it. I did not want it to take the very things I cherished, myself included.

I prayed to Celestia to carry the burden away from my soul. I held fast to that prayer, investing every ounce of hope into that wish.

And that night, she answered.

I was awakened by blaring alarms and sirens that thrusted me out of bed. Immediately, I found Orion standing there before me, staring deep into my eyes with a glance that shouted only a single word: “Run”

Without hesitation, I left the room and bolted outward. An alarm echoed through the halls as Orion ran beside me, guiding me down narrow halls and past security that adorned heavy armor. I was scared, shaken, and my teeth chattered like a fool, but I didn’t know how to react. My mind was everywhere but nowhere.

We passed through dozens of locked homes, with ponies barricaded behind doors as they attempted to shield themselves from an apparent danger. There was no physical danger though.

Their hope was fleeting fast, and they longed to restrain that.

Soon, Orion and I made it to the entrance of the Stable door. I know not how he did it, but he did. And I was far from the hooves of death and that was all that mattered.

I hugged Orion quickly, who was caught off guard by the sudden embrace. It was a ridiculous act, but I could not refrain from doing it. He saved me.

Orion quickly brushed me off with chivalry however, reaching for the control panel of the Stable door that caused it to whir with life.

“We have to keep going…” he warned as the rusted door from behind us began to rattle and thump loudly.

It was enough to send the message across. As the large metal pendulum rotated outward, we took flight, ignoring the tyrannical monarchs from behind us or the brooding darkness from ahead. We were oblivious to the world as we ran full sprint into a new world we thought nothing of.

{***}

We ran. And we ran and ran. We were so intent on running that we failed to realize we had passed through the darkness. We expected our grand escape to be met with a bright shining light, a glowing future where Orion and I would venture off and endure our friendship in a grand garden of peace and serenity.

Instead, sulfur stung my nose. Smoke burned my lungs. The warmth in my body disappeared.

I found myself staring outward into a scorched landscape infested with swollen weeds and the dry remains of trees. The ground was ill-ridden, dying of malnutrition and dehydration.

My panting became one with the wind as its high pitch resonated in my earlobe.

The dead sky suddenly moved, stepping slowly over the twisted carcass of Equestria as it loomed closer to me. It ate everything in its path without remorse.

I was petrified and I could not move. For a second, I had the urge to turn back, but quickly fought the idea. I turned to Orion, hopeful he can provide me closure, but he as well stared at the large beast with shock. Perhaps he himself expected the bright glow and warm embrace of the sun.

Then, without warning, the smog zipped past over the two of us, darkening everything in our path as it turned the sickly green floor into a valley of death. I could not part the land from the skies – both were so horribly dark and horrid that my mind was on the verge of shutting down.

It was dark, but still I could see. My crystal glow shined through the thick black fog, and it lit both Orion and I within the darkness. But as quickly as I came to realize this, the light began to fade. It became colder, less responsive, until finally it lay dead. As the last star on my hoof became extinguished, I felt a sense of dread pierce my heart, the very kind that attacked me within confinement.

Orion gave me no time for reflection however, although I knew he had as many questions as I did. It was a feeling that brought out a filly's greatest fear: extinguishing the night light.

Seeing how he got us into this, he planned to get us out. He ordered me to walk beside him carefully as we ventured through the dreadful valley, his pip-buck lighting the path.

But deep down there was no point to his journey. As we walked on in silence, my mind spoke once more, except this time, it became more terrifying and distorted.

“That dreadful sensation you feel inside of you,” it subconsciously taunted as I struggled to remain focus. “That’s the true feeling of life. This world is not your kingdom. It is you grave, and you know that. In this world, you will fail…”

It then suddenly disappeared. I stopped for a few seconds but was unable to come to a proper conclusion of what just happened. Seeing me immobile, Orion urged me to continue on. So I followed.

As we ventured onward, exhaustion took a hold of our bodies. I felt my legs beginning to buckle underneath my weight, for it may have been hours which we walked. No light had shown, and we thought this was all that remained of a broken world.

By a miracle however, the two of us stumbled upon a decomposing shack, surrounded by broken fences and dying trees. Without hesitation, we quickly entered the house and rested our tired bodies.

To this day, I don’t know how I slept that day. In a world as dead as this, gifted a dreadful sensation that can kill even the slightest hope, how could I have not taken it with such pain? Maybe it was because the feeling was mutual…that feeling of loneliness.

But I was still ignorant then. I had much to learn.

{***}

The next day, I awoke to a dim grey sky that slowly slithered above me. The shack had a massive hole on top, but I gave it little attention really. I only remained quiet as I stared up and pondered what was next.

“You’re awake now. Thought you may have left me in my sleep.”

Orion smiled at me as I turned to give him a bleak look. He was only trying to maintain sanity, but my look seemed to destroy that effort. I apologized and he let out a futile sigh.

“No…I’m sorry…”

After that, it was mostly quiet. I knew nothing to comfort him for I was in no position to comfort. I lacked the potential to even help myself.

But still, I tried.

“No, don't be. I’m alive because of you. Thank you.”

I gave him no chance to respond. I got up from the rotten floorboard and began to walk about. I felt grimy, disturbing smells were constantly invading my nostrils, and it was too much for a pampered pony like me to handle. I needed to keep myself away from the feeling, but everywhere I turned, I found myself lost within its presence. So eventually, I returned to where I laid, looking back at

Orion who had canisters and boxes around him. I had also just realized he had a leather studded saddle on his backside.
“Is it good?” I asked as he cracked open a box and took a bite out of the food. At first his face looked delightful but quickly shifted into that of disgust.

“It’s edible.” He responded with a pungent expression. I denied the food for a good while, but as my stomach became more violent, I finally gave in and ate the disgusting matter.
It was dreadful in my mouth, but it went down easy in my stomach which was an upside.

Until Orion spoke.

“Careful, a little too much radiation isn’t good for you.” he remarked as he looked down at his pip-buck that glowed in his face. I immediately began to hack and spit.

“What?!” I shouted in confusion, which caused Pyro to smirk. “Are you trying to poison me?”

“No, but it seems as if you are. You should’ve gotten a pip-buck instead of a delicately detailed mane or a silver tiara-”
“You know why I don’t have one.”

We spent a good while going back and forth, giving voice to the world. Eventually, we landed to the events of our escape.

“Why did I do it?” Orion said, crossing his hooves before him as he lay on the floor. “…I don’t know…”

“You don’t know?” I asked quickly. I wanted to know if this was truly thought out, as if this was an elaborate and truthful plan. But not even I knew what defined the truth.

“…You were miserable…I saw it inside of you. All the times we hanged out, all the times we talked…it was just their…in your voice, in your movements. You…you didn’t have to live like that. No pony should ever have to live like that…”

Silence followed afterward. Orion’s words left me stunned as he expressed care for my being. It was something uncanny, and his words struck me in a state of stupor.

“…So, why did you leave?” I finally asked.

Orion said nothing, only looking to his side.

“Call me a fool,” he said, “But I could not stay there. I knew what was out here but…”

Orion then sighed, causing me to blink in his direction. I listened closely, intent on discovering who this stallion truly was. For in all the time that I knew him, I thought I would have known every inch of his mind. I still had much to learn.

“…there was something calling to me…I don’t know what it was, but I had this feeling that I had to be out here…I can’t explain it…but I knew the Stable was not a place for me…”

“So you had already planned on leaving? And I was just…” my words trailed off as I felt the remains of the sentence leave my own mind. I really did not know what to say. I was going off emotion, not logic or reason.

Orion bowed his head and sighed.

“I’m sorry” he stated slumly, “I did not mean to bring you out here…not even I expected this…”

He stood solemnly while I waited back with a muddled mind. My head throbbed with desires, longing to sense care, betrayal, anger, and so on. But as I looked on at the red stallion, I knew he truly meant what he spoke. And anger could not help me in any way, for I only had Orion. And Orion only had me.

“…I forgive you…” my mouth has slipped, my bitterness failing to hold it back. Orion said nothing, reading my mind with my eyes, and nodded his head quietly.

After that, we arranged to leave the shack. We had regained our energy and stripped the rotten house clean of resources. Before the grey skies shifted into a sickly green, we left the house and trotted off into the unknown.

We did not speak, but there was a lot left to be spoken. I trusted Orion though, without a doubt for he showed a care that I saw in nopony else. He had this strong image, one that could have easily been mistaken as a leader.

So I followed him through the Wasteland. And never once did he mention my depressed coat, absent from light and grace as shadows intertwined within its form.