• Published 11th Mar 2014
  • 2,607 Views, 64 Comments

Wandering Prey - Rikkity



A modern mage transports himself to Equestria in an attempt to flee from those who would destroy him.

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Chapter 4

Aiden was unconscious after yesterday’s events and Applejack was kind enough to give him a place to rest. He was drained from using up just about whatever magical power he had in him to cast that spell. His eyelids twitched as he began to wake up. His vision was a bit blurry, but once it finally cleared it up he saw that he was laying in a bed. He slowly shifted eyes around until they found Applejack herself walking into the room he was in.

She trotted over to him and gave him a worried look. “You okay there, partner?”

Aiden slowly brought a hand to his face and groaned. He let it fall onto his chest and answered, “I’m fine.” He took a another moment to look around the room he was in. “Where am I anyway?”

“You’re at Sweet Apple Acres. I took ya’ inside the house so you can get some rest. I couldn’t just let you sleep on the couch, so I let you use my bed.”

His eyes widened a bit and his cheeks filled with a light red. “The couch would’ve been fine. I’m quite used to things like that.”

“Nuh uh. No way am I goin’ to let a guest be uncomfortable. Now, I didn’t quite catch your name earlier. What was it?”

“Aiden,” he answered.

“And you’re a human just like Lucien?”

“Yes, I am.”

Applejack sat on her haunches and lifted a hoof to her chin. “So, how did you ever end up in Equestria? What’s your story?”

He lowered his head at the question. If he told her everything, she wouldn’t be able to trust him, or forgive him. He had to suck it up though, he wasn’t raised to be the secretive type unless it was personal. He took in a deep breath and prepared to tell her everything she needed to know.

“Well, as you know, I’m a mage. When I turned eighteen some really... despicable people found out what I was. I don’t know exactly how they were able to just suddenly know; they just knew. They have been following me ever since. Always one step behind, snapping at my heels… I just wanted to get away from them, I never did anything wrong! So, a close friend of mine, who was also a mage, decided that we would study interdimensional travel,” for a moment, Aiden froze. He stared up at the ceiling for what felt like an eternity.

“Uh, hello? Aiden. You there?” Applejack waved a hoof in front of him to get his attention.

He shook his head and blinked a few times before looking back at her. “Oh, sorry. I just caught up in some memories. Anyway, we had our disagreements here and there, but we managed to pull through most of it until…” He took in a breath and gripped his arms, and looked down.

“Until what?” Asked Applejack.

“Until he did something stupid I told him never to do, “ he answered.

“What was that?”

“He opened up a forbidden tome that contained corrupt spirits and demons. I told him never to read any of the incantations, but he did it anyway. I… was eventually forced to kill him because they managed to completely possess him,” his eyes shuttered. “I don’t take a life unless it’s absolutely necessary, but sometimes you do what you need to do. Even if it means killing a friend to truly save them from the suffering they would have to endure if they were to live. In retrospect, I did him a favor,” he crossed his arms.

Applejack was baffled by what she had just heard. He killed somepony?! He didn’t even sound remorseful! “Why in tarnation would you do such a thing?”

“If someone you cared for was… gone, and the only way to rescue them was the release of death, would you do it?” He asked.

“I would have still looked for alternatives or looked for help,” Applejack retorted.

Aiden was left speechless. “Help,” was all that he whispered to himself. She had a point. He took in another breath and continued. “I think it’s time I moved onto how I got here.”

“That would probably be best. I’m not too fond of hearin’ about death. Seeing and hearing about the things Lucien has done freaks me out enough.”

“Alright then,” he raised an eyebrow. He would have to ask Lucien about his time here in Equestria and what he used to do before that, but he would have to save that for another time. “Anyway, after sometime I managed to finish the research we started together. About a month after I had turned twenty, the spell was ready, and I prepared myself for interdimensional travel and arrived here after traveling through the rift.”

“Where have you been this entire time? I don’t remember seeing you around Ponyville before,” she pointed out with her head tilted.

“I stayed within the confines of the Everfree,” he answered. “It was the best place I could be to remain hidden.”

“What have you been doing the entire time?”

“Research.”

“For what?”

“Well, I knew that I was in another dimension or world at the time, so I decided to get to know what inhabited it, and so on.”

“So you’ve been spyin’ on us?”

“Uh, no.” Aiden wasn’t sure how to put it, but he might as well just tell her what she needed to hear. “I was more or less roaming amongst you in plain sight.”

“How in tarnation were you able to do that?”

“I disguised myself as a pony.”

Applejack’s mouth opened for a moment and closed. She didn’t know what to think. How could he change himself into a pony? “H-how did you manage to do that? The only things that I know are able to change their appearances are changelings.”

“I concocted a special special potion that could change one’s appearance. The process is really painful though, and I would rather not describe it.”

“Okay. Did you happen to go by another name or did you keep using yours?”

“I went by the name of Prism actually.”

Applejack’s eyes went wide. “Impossible!”

Aiden nodded at the fact that it was possible. Applejack scowled at Aiden. “So, you’ve been lyin’ to us the entire time?!”

Aiden lowered his head. “I was scared. Anyone I came into contact with was immediately found because they had some association with me, and they were immediately disposed of. I couldn’t risk that happening. I only wanted to be able to live life freely,” his voice began to waver. “I wanted to get away, but even in another world I felt unsafe. Everytime I turn my head over my shoulder I could swear I’m being watched. I left so much behind coming here. I’ll never be able to see my family, or anyone else ever again.”

Applejack sat there as she continued to to narrow her eyes at him. Aiden looked back up at her. “Like I said: I’ll leave once I am done fixing everything. You won’t have to see me again.”

“I don’t understand why you couldn’t just come out, and introduce yourself in the first place.”

He shook his head. “I came here a year before Lucien did. It’s been three years, and I doubt your first encounter with him was a social one. I also didn’t want to take risks, and have something like that happen.”

She put a hoof behind her head after hearing his explanation. “I guess that makes sense,” she replied and fixed him once more with another scowl. “That still doesn’t excuse you at all.”

“No, it doesn’t.”

She took a deep breath to relax herself. “Listen, you don’t have to disappear forever after cleaning your mess. We’ll forgive you eventually.”

Aiden shook his head again. He wasn’t going to argue, but this wasn’t just your normal incident. It was bigger than that! The entire town was nearly destroyed and she assures him that all the ponies would forgive him at some point? He doubted it. He wouldn’t forgive him if he was a pony. He thought that she was just probably saying that to assure him.

“I really don’t want to cause anymore trouble than I have. I feel as if I already overstayed my welcome here,” he finally replied.

Applejack opened her mouth to reply, but she was cut off as the wooden door to the room creaked open. “You what now?” said Lucien as he walked in, rather rudely. The rest of the door swung open to reveal a face-hoofing Twilight Sparkle.

Aiden looked over and gawked at Lucien for a moment. “Uhm, hi.”

“Yeah, so, just came to make sure you weren’t dead. That’s important. Mana exhaustion is the leading cause of magically induced deaths,” Lucien said cheerfully.

“He’s fine now, just needed a good night’s sleep,” she said, her cheeks tinged slightly red from the serious conversation Lucien had just burst in on.

Lucien didn’t seem to notice. “That’s also helpful. Oh!” he suddenly flung his backpack around and unzipped it. “Here,” he said, tossing Aiden a can of soda, which he barely caught, surprised by the sudden flying cylinder. “Drink it, I made it myself. Restores mana. It’s like a Red Bull for magic.”

“Okay,” Aiden replied raising a brow. The can made a hiss as he pulled the tab open. He slowly brought the can to his lips to take a sip. After a few gulps he waited. He felt stirring inside him as his mana reserves started to steadily replenishing itself. “Whoa.”

Lucien offered him a grin. “Yeah, it does that. Anyway, we still have work to do.” He held up his hand to stop, as if suddenly realizing something. “Wait, you have some work to do. I should probably get going to Cloudsdale. Twilight?” he turned around to look at her, then pointed. “You’re coming with me.”

“What? Why?” she asked, clearly confused.

Lucien shrugged. “I’m lonely.”

“Aww, and I guess you might want your favorite blanket too?” Aiden interjected mockingly.

Lucien spun back around, still pointing, though now at Aiden. “And you can shut your face. Now,” he pointed upward and said, “We go!” He triumphantly exited the room, leaving a still-confused Twilight in his wake.

Aiden let out a breath of air. “I guess I should be getting up to help fix the town,” he threw the blankets off his body and turned to put his feet on the ground. He put one hand on the bed for support and slowly stood up.

“Hey, Aiden, I saw you using some magic in the fight yesterday that was really dissimilar to what I’ve seen from Lucien. Do you think you could explain a little bit to me?” She was looking at him with such hopeful, large eyes that he found it hard to resist, as if he would in the first place.

“I don’t see why not,” he took a moment to think out his explanation. “The magic I use is illusion, for the most part. Mainly focuses on messing with the minds of your opponents. Good for quick getaways, or at least that’s what I tend to use it for. I create clones of myself, or even mess with my opponent’s mind so much that they begin to see things that aren’t really there,” he pondered for a brief moment, “But that doesn’t mean the magic is any less dangerous. The illusions can do some real damage to the mind of the one it’s affecting, and do physical harm as well.”

Twilight put a hoof to her chin in thought, no doubt making some mental note. “Fascinating. So you can control illusions of yourself? Are they physically present? Can they manipulate objects like we can?”

“Yes, yes, and yes,” he answered.

“Hmm…” she raised a hoof to ask another question, but instead let out a surprised yelp as a hand reached in from the hallway and snagged Twilight, pulling her out of the room. “Hey! I wasn’t done!” Aiden heard her say as she was man-handled down the stairs.

Aiden shrugged. “I was really hoping that would last a little longer.”

“Well, uh, that just happened,” Applejack said from the side of the room.

“Yup,” Aiden replied. “So, I guess I should head to town now.” He was about to head out when he was stopped by a sudden rumble in his stomach. He put a hand across it. “The most important meal of the day is one of many things I tend to forget during my times of research and study.”

“There’s breakfast if you’re hungry. Why don’t you eat before goin’ out and fixin’ the town?” She suggested.

Aiden looked over to her. “Sounds good.”

*****

“This is really good,” said Aiden as he chewed on a slice of apple pie. “Haven’t eaten something like this years,” a sigh escaped his breath after he swallowed. “Reminds me of my mom’s cooking.”

“Do you have any siblings?” The small filly Aiden identified as Applebloom asked with much innocence in her voice.

“I don’t think that’s somethin’ we should ask him about Applebloom,,” Applejack chimed in.

Aiden shook his head as he rose his right hand. “It’s fine. I don’t mind the question at all,” he replied. He gave his attention on the filly as he started to answer her question. “I do have a sibling. An older brother that I still hold in high regard to be exact. He was always there for me if I got hurt, something bad happened, or if I needed something.”

“What did you two normally do together?” Applebloom questioned him further.

Aiden thought deeply about his memories with his older brother. “There was quite a lot that we did,” he chuckled, “We’d go around the farm and play ‘hide n’ seek’ in the corn fields every now and then, and maybe even pull a prank or two on our neighbors. Thinking back on that, we did get into a lot of trouble.”

Applejack turned her attention to Aiden as she took interest. “You lived on a farm?”

He nodded. “It was the life I knew. The only one at that...” Aiden stared down at his empty plate and took a breath. He pushed himself back in his chair and got up. “I think it’s time I went and helped with fixing the town. I’m sorry to have taken up space in your home.”

“It’s no problem at all, Aiden,” Applejack replied.

Just before Aiden left he stopped and turned his head. “Thank you for your hospitality. I’ll find a way to repay you.”

“There’s no need to repay me. It was nice havin’ you over.”

Aiden finally walked out of the kitchen and out the front door. He slowly made his way back to Ponyville as his feelings for the mare who just took care of him welled up inside him. This wasn’t the first time this happened and he could feel the butterflies in his stomach going into a frenzy. He shook his head violently as he pushed the emotions to the back of his mind. He looked to Ponyville and saw that the place was still in ruin. He continued to make his way toward the town with every intention of fixing his mistakes.