• Published 8th Apr 2014
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Shadow's Enigma - Note Sketch



With his dark past heavy on his mind, Sombra is put to the test as he begins a reformation process. Though his mind is no longer crowded with the influence of dark magic, his heart is none the lighter. Let the test begin.

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23. Something Unexpected

"And then he came real close to lick some batter off my nose! For a moment I thought he was going for a kiss, but if he had done that I might have just fainted instead!" Pinkie said as she rolled around on her bed, a thick blush upon her face. "My heart was beating sooooo fast, I thought it would explode!"

"Oh darling..." Rarity began. She had come for a visit for news on any improvement between Sombra and her only to find her in a state of strange bliss. "What if Sombra meant nothing more than to get the batter off of you?"

"Well duh! I know he wouldn't actually kiss me. But I still think things went well...considering."

"Considering what dear?"

"That each and everything you wanted me to do backfired."

A look of horror befell the white mare's expression as she backed into a wall. "Impossible! Those acts and stunts work for every stallion."

"Except that you forgot about Sombra being a unicorn, so he didn't need to get close to give me something out of reach...and he reads at lightning speed so he didn't need my instructions for the batter...and that he noticed the make up since I first saw him at the library. Which, by the way, he knew you had given me. He apparently has a very good sense of smell and said I had the scent of your boutique so he knew you helped me put it on."

Rarity placed a hoof to her chin as she paced around Pinkie's room. "Well, I suppose that plan was for the average stallion, and as we've just witnessed he isn't the average stallion. I need to do more research. What about the last point on the checklist?"

"Oh, you mean leaning on him? Sombrie didn't seem to mind. He let me lean on him until the foals began crying, then he left saying that since I was tired I should just rest."

"Hmm..." Rarity hummed out as her mind tried to place the pieces together. Darling, I know this might sound weird, but what if Sombra is one of those stallions?"

"Those?"

"You know, the nice guys that do gentlemanly things but only because it's in their nature? What if he is just a nice guy and doesn't really have feelings for any pony?"

Pinkie's mane lost some of it's puffiness as she began to think about what was said to her. "S-So what would that mean?"

"It means that he is nice to all mares, not just those he is interested in."

"And that means?..."

"That we have to do a little experiment!"

《=●=》

Sombra stood up from his desk. Finally tired out of reading, he let out a groan as he popped his back to alleviate some tension. He was finally done, finally done catching up with history and now knew of all the events from a thousand years ago until now. That being said, he seemed to have run into one thing constantly. The victory over evil by six unlikely mares. He must admit, they seemed to be very good at turning things around at the last second to save the day.

A quick glance outside later and Sombra knew that he had stayed up a tad bit too late, he had lost track of time doing what he hoped to be his last study session. Tired from being still, he decided to roam the library a little to just stretch his legs. Stepping out of his room, he noticed the dim light of candles that vaguely illuminated a desk not too far away. Spike had fallen asleep during some record keeping and was now snoring away at the desk. Sombra let out a soft sigh as he walked over to the drake. Using his magic he used a curtain as an improvised blanket and covered the assistant.

"Wow, never thought I'd see the day." Twilight said as she stepped close. She had Spike's own cover from his bed which she was going to use to cover him up.

"My apologies, I did not know you were getting the dragon a blanket."

"No no, it's quite alright." She said as she placed the cover to the side in a neat folded manner. "I was actually just passing by, still doing some reading on my journal."

"The one you share with your friends?"

"Yeah."

"Still no luck with your anchor?"

"No..." Twilight responded, lowering her head as she felt ashamed of not being able to find something worthy of her anchor. Her deadline was coming and as a student, she did not want to be late with an assignment, especially the very first one.

"Chin up Sparkle." Sombra said as he began to walk passed her. "All in due time."

"But that's just it! It's almost due!"

Sombra sighed as he began to recall the stories he heard of this rather studious mare. "Alright, perhaps that was poor word choice on my part." He said as he turned around to calm Twilight "All I am trying to say is that these things can't be forced. Just allow your anchor to come to you, if you focus on finding it you'll miss what's right in front of you."

"R-Right, sorry. I was just so excited to learn more magic that I got so frustrated that I am being held back by my own short comings."

Sombra placed a hoof to the princess's shoulder. "Patience. One will stumble if you begin to run in the dark. One hoof at the time." He said before making his way back to his room, leaving the poor mare to her own thoughts. Once he closed the door behind him he let go of the air he had been holding in his chest, a loud sigh was heard echo in his room.

"That mare is too interested in the dark arts. Perhaps I should pay a visit to some pony who has more experience teaching her." Sombra's thought immediately went to Celestia, whom in his head held a very sly smirk upon her face. "I'd rather not actually...." He closed his eyes and allowed his body to drape down on the floor while his back slid on the door he was leaning on. Opening his eyes he saw his bed.

"Hmm, I really shouldn't take any chances though." He said before beginning to make his way to his comfortable sheets. As he walked he used his magic to undress, each clothe piece quickly and gently being pulled off one by one and neatly set in his closet, a routine he had come to do every single night and could now be repeated with ease. He climbed into bed and closed his eyes.

One thousand years trapped in ice means that there isn't much to do except sleep. That being said, Sombra had become very good at manipulating his dreams. He could, on a whim, fall asleep whenever he wanted, like wise, he could begin to dream whenever he wanted. It was a skill he developed over time in his imprisonment. That doesn't mean he can't have nightmares or dream randomly, but when he did, once he realized he was dreaming he could take back control and change any aspect he wanted.

His eyes shut, Sombra forced himself to sleep and dream. Like all dreams he consciously began, he found himself in a white empty space. Like an empty canvas he could paint at will. With a glance Sombra began to change his surroundings to something more familiar, the library he currently resided at. Once all the furniture were created he began to manifest something to pass the time, and like any royalty of the ages passed, he made tea to drink. Sitting down at the table nearby he sipped away at the tea as he waited.

"Does thou realize manipulation of dreams is Our domain?" A rather cranky voice said. With a smirk Sombra responded.

"How else would I get your attention?" He said, gesturing her to sit down.

"Thou could have simply called out to Us." Luna said as she sat down across from Sombra. He offered her a cup which she took just as quickly.

"Though We have to admit, thou art excellent at manipulating dreams."

"A thousand years of practice." Luna giggled slightly at his acute response. If it was one thing they shared, it was a thousand years of boredom.

"What did thou wish to speak to Us about?"

"Princess Luna, I know-"

"Simply Luna is fine." She interrupted.

"Yes well, Luna, I know that I have been asking a lot of you lately, but I was wondering if you could humor me once more."

"Ask and We shall make it so."

Sombra gave the princess a soft smile as he requested something of her. It was rather nice to have some pony always looking out for him. Other than Pinkie, Luna had been a constant presence in his early days of reformation. Again, like Pinkie he had thought of her as a nuisance, now as a good friend. After the request was made they spent what was left of the night simply talking and catching up. A good conversation with a friend, most of the subject was how they both seemed to have a hard time getting up to date with modern times.

《=●=》

Sombra slowly opened his eyes, letting out a yawn as he sat up on his bed. Morning had come, and with it, his plan from the previous night. He quickly stood up and get dressed. Something that took little time for the rehearsed routine of his. Sombra wanted nothing more than to get out of the library as quickly as he could. He did not want anything to interrupt him from to the train station. But as luck would have it, as soon as he placed a hoof outside of his room he heard laughter from many different voices, one of which he could not recognize.

"Okay Twilight, everything is spotless now!" Shouted Spike as he passed by Sombra to get back to where the group was, but he was jerked to the side by the dark stallion.

"Spike, who is in the library this early in the morning?" Sombra asked rather worried that his request from the previous night might have been turned upside down by Celestia once again.

"You don't know? Celestia said you wanted to talk to her so she came in person."

"What?! Luna for tartarus sake can you please stop reporting everything I ask of you to your sister?" Sombra said as he slammed a hoof to his forehead.

"We apologize, We did not think it agitated thou so." Luna said as she walked to where the guys stood. The sudden appearance of the princess took Sombra by surprise as he stared blankly at her.

"Luna? You are here too?"

"Why yes, We wished to see thou in person, and since sister was paying thou a visit We thought We could accompany her."

Sombra took a moment to take in everything that was happening. He let out a sigh and gestured Spike and Luna to take him to the meeting place. With a content smile the princess and drake led him to the main room of the library were Twilight and Celestia were talking at a table.

"So sorry you had to see the library so messy." Twilight apologized.

"Not at all Twilight, though I suppose that anything even a little out of place would be messy for you." Celestia teased, causing the purple mare to laugh nervously. Despite being of the same rank now, Twilight still saw Celestia as her teacher and mentor and still got nervous around showing her anything other than perfection.

As the trio began to come into view, Celestia's gaze quickly met Sombra's. "Sombra! So good to see you again."

"L-Likewise." Sombra responded. It was one thing to have townsfolk act friendly towards him, but another thing entirely for the sun goddess to act as if they were old friends.

"So I heard there was something you wished to discuss with me?" Celestia said as she stood up to greet Sombra.

"Yes, though as I had told Luna last night..." Sombra began by throwing a glance to the night princess who only blushed in embarrassment for a second. "I would prefer to have a one on one conversation in private."

Twilight leaned out of her chair and raised an eyebrow to Sombra as he spoke to her teacher.

"Yes of course, we could go for a walk and speak if you wish."

"What of Us? Surely thou do not expect Us to stay put while thou goes on a morning stroll."

"I am sorry Luna but-"

"You're right little sister." Celestia interrupted Sombra. She quickly turned to Twilight. "Say, how many of your friends are free this morning? We could all meet up and have a day out."

"Celestia-"

"I think I can get a hold of every pony, I'm sure they'd be happy to come along!" Twilight said happily.

"I'll make the sandwiches!" Spike shouted out as he ran to the kitchen.

"How pleasant! We have not had a 'get together' in ages!" Luna said excitedly.

Sombra sighed. He gave up. He knew how that the mares got rolling it nothing would stop them. He had no choice but o simply go with it. As he found a seat to use Celestia poked him with a hoof to get his attention.

"Don't look so glum, we'll have plenty of time to speak, but it isn't everyday that one can make more friends."

"Why are you so obsessed with me making friends?"

"I once met a powerful unicorn who would not acknowledge the magic of friendship and he died not being able to complete his masterpiece spell. I simply do not wish for others to go down his path."

"Yes well, I am no normal unicorn."

"Neither was he." Celestia said with a wink. Sombra sighed as he brushed off her words.

What exactly is she thinking? Sombra asked himself. He just could not fathom it. There was no helping it though, what was done was done, what came next was simply another trail for him to surpass. And as Celestia as his witness, quite literally, he was going to surpass it.

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