• Published 24th May 2014
  • 4,228 Views, 48 Comments

Crystal Ballerina - BlueSkyHeadLeft010

What is the meaning of life? For me it means getting a second chance. You wouldn't think that buying a simple Pearl from an old geezer at a gas station would transport you to Equestria right? Wrong. Now I'm stuck here with this Pearl on my

  • ...

The Crystal Empire: Part 1

This day could've gone so much better...

It could've gone so much worse too, but right now it was pretty bad yea...

Well first off I find out that Twilight and I are tasked with protecting an Empire from a powerful tyrant that wiped out my entire kind, and from there things went down hill...
I summoned a being from another plane, that had a weird cube thing he used to transform, in hopes of gaining information on how to defeat Sombra. What I got was being who was utterly as clueless as I was and couldn't fight except maybe to save his own hind.
Then, me and Twilight end up facing our worse fear thanks to some dark magic junk enchanted on a door and then I find myself having to face off against the 'guardian' of the empire to even get where we needed to go! And when I get done with that, I find myself face to snout with mister 'rain on my parade' himself. Sombra.

What am I doing right now?
Banging my head against a crystal wall with Twilight next to me as I contemplate the stupidity that is my life.
I sigh as I lean against the walls and look over to Twilight, giving a weak smile. "Heh, and things were going so smoothly earlier today..."
"Whee! Road Trip! Road Trip!" Pinkie called excitedly as she bounced up and down in the cart.
"Pinkie, could you be a dear and please stop rocking the cart back and forth?" Rarity interrupted as Pinkie complied.
"Okie, dokie! I'm just itching to see the mysterious empire! Think of all the parties I can throw!" She ogled as she flopped down in the floor.

I let out a weak chuckle as I return to watching the snowy blank scenery in front of me...
Twilight seemed to pick up on it as I hear her trotting towards me and sit down. "Crystal, you've been awful quiet the whole ride through. What's on your mind?" She asks casually.
I let out a small laugh, "Heh. A lot of things are on my mind Twilight." I sighed as I lowered my snout on the window seal which resulted in fogging up the glass a smidge before I rubbed it away with a hoof.
I don't look at her, instead I continue to focus on the bleak desolate snow in front of me, "I guess, I don't know... For one, I feel kinda foreign here because I'm not-" I pause and flick my ear back over to where the group was before sighing again, "Another is that this empire we're visiting... If Sombra really did wipe out my species, what's stopping him some simply doing the same to me?" I sniffed, my eyes were not watering though! I refuse to accept that!

Twilight looked at me for a moment before smiling back at me, "Crystal, you're not going to suffer that fate." She stated.
I blinked at her, "How do you know?" I waved my hoof for emphasis, "What if-"
"You have us, and I Pinkie Promise nothing bad will happen to you while we're around!" She said, putting a hoof on my shoulder as a sign of support.
I sighed, giving up my argument. "You're right Twilight. I should stop trying to count my chickens before they hatch." I perked up.

"Chickens?! Why would you want to count them anyways??? That's kinda boring considering that they count themselves silly!" Pinkie popped in between us as she giggled.
I had to laugh too, "No Pinkie, it's an expression!"
Pinkie giggled, "I know silly! I just wanted you to stop frowning!" She hopped back to where she was and started chatting with Rainbow Dash, before the train squealed and came to a slow stop.
"All aboard!" The conductor yelled, as I realized we had reached our destination.
I got up and grabbed my things as everyone left the cart.
To say that it was cold was an understatement... More like bone chilling.
As I trotted out of the cart I noticed the looks on everypony's face. They agreed it was freezing. (Save for Rarity; she had Spike dragging a bunch of luggage with clothing in it as she herself had a scarf and a pair of elegant looking boots on.)

The train station itself was nothing impressive to look at really. It had been hastily thrown together from old tracks around the origins of the empire and several blocks of magically protected wood...
As expected there was no pony else around save for the conductor and us.
"Twilight!" A masculine voice shouted over the wind as something white, blue, and black moved into view.
A stallion with a pair of snow goggles and a face scarf came trotting into view as he pulled off his protection.
"Shining Armor!" Twilight gasped as she ran forward to hug the stallion.
I blinked, "Wait, that's your brother?" I said as I noticed Shining armor wasn't much taller than me in my pony form. Talk about being underwhelming...

Twilight didn't pick up on my comment though as she kept hugging her brother before he looked at the other seven of us.
"I'm so glad you made it!" He laughed before pulling his facial protection back on, "Come on, we'd better get moving... There are things out here that we don't really want to run into after dark." He said seriously as he waved at us to continue onward...

"What kind of things?" I asked as we started to walk in the snow. Ugh, I wish there was something to keep it from freezing my hooves, it was well.. Humiliatingly cold on them...
Shining stopped to look at me before he narrowed his eyes, "Let's just say the empire isn't the only thing that's returned." He said, as suddenly a bone chilling howl came from directly behind us, causing me to jump nearly a foot in fear.

Everyone seemed to freeze as they searched for the disturbance. "T-that was one of those things isn't it?" Fluttershy shook to my right as the wind started to pick up.
Shining kicked it into full gear, "We have to get to the empire, now..." He shouted as the ground started shaking beneath us...
As if tempting fate, I turned my head towards the source of the disturbance to find something sinisterly black and mist-like forming out of nothing....
A growl emanated from the black mist, as my legs locked up and I blinked to find Twilight shoving me away from it.
"Go! Go!" She shouted, as I suddenly felt my legs again, and the adrenaline pumped through my veins. I shot forwards like a bullet on steroids.
Everyone booked it to full speed, with Shining saving poor Spike who had to ditch Rarity's luggage to even run, as the mist-like being gave chase.

"Oh crap, oh crap! We're not gonna make it!" I screamed as I felt the mist closing in around me, my legs screaming in protest as the adrenaline was beginning to wear off. My rational side said the shimmering blue shield ahead of us was too far away, so I should just stop while I'm ahead...
My survival side beat my rational side to the curb, and screamed for me to keep running despite being tired. It was better than becoming food...
In the progress of fighting myself, I hadn't realized I had slowed down considerably.. The others were way ahead of me, but still not close enough to reach the shield, while I was galloping like I had a thorn in my hoof and had to trot awkwardly. I realized I wasn't physically as coordinated in this form than my humanoid one, and that was gonna cost me...

In a rushed panic, I changed quickly back into my humanoid shape and put on the extra speed. Or I would, if I hadn't forgotten that I was still running when I changed, and instead fell flat on my face, skidding across the snow in the process.
Everyone screamed in panic as they stopped running momentarily, while I picked my face up off the ground.
I looked up and saw the creature closing in on me and screamed. This was it, I supposed.

I hung my head in defeat as I prepared for the end, but a wail caused me to snap out of it.
The being was fleeing away from Shining Armor who was firing bolts of magic its way to protect me.
"Come on! Get moving!" Someone said, as I felt two hooves wrap around me and drag me back on my feet.
Once I was up again, I took off running with Rainbow Dash, who had saved me, and we fled towards the ever close shield.

There was a shout from behind me as I saw Shining firing more bolts at the creature as we kept running. "Almost there!" He yelled, as suddenly the creature lunged at us, and Shining bucked us all through the shield as he fired another bolt.
Time seemed to slow down again as I saw myself flying through the blue shield, and odd experience mind you... It's like sticking your finger through a soap bubble membrane and coming out the other side intact and not popping the bubble. Shining was firing bolt after magic bolt at the mist creature, and the creature was releasing a bolt of sickly green and purple magic right back.
Rainbow Dash was falling right on top of me, and then something else fell through the shield...

The mist-like being roared angrily as it charged the shield, but no luck. It was met with much resistance as it screamed angrily before turning around.
I breathed a sigh of relief before turning back to my dazed friends.
"Everypony okay?" Twilight called as everyone grumbled in agreement and we stood up.
Behind me Shining hissed as he placed a hoof up to his horn.
"What happened to your horn?!" Twilight gasped as she ran over to inspect it.
"I'll be okay. It's just a magic cancelling spell... It should wear off.." Shining winced as he tried to hide the all to obvious pain from his younger sister.
Twilight seemed relieved, but I just raised an eyebrow at him, as he looked away...

That's when I got a first view at what the Crystal Empire really looked like...
"Woah. This doesn't even look like what's outside.." I gasped, as I glanced back at the shield to see it still gloomy and snowy, and then back to the empire that was sunny and colorful.

"Wow! Sparkleriffic!" Pinkie cheered behind me as I tore my gaze away and noticed Shining standing up.
"No time to admire the scenery I'm afraid. Let me take you to the castle." He said serious as we walked on ahead.
Outside the mist vanished as it appeared to retreat for now...
I shivered. That was a close call. What if it happens again?
I shook my head as I turned back into my earth pony form to fit through the door. No, nothing like that was going to happen. Not as long as I had my friends with me..
The inside of the throne room was... Shiny, to best describe it.
"Cadance!" Twilight gasped as she galloped over to where a pink alicorn was sitting with her head hung low...
She perked up the moment she saw Twilight though, and they began to do a funny little dance.
"Sunshine! Sunshine! Ladybugs awake! Clap your hooves and do a little shake!" They giggled before Cadance groaned and hunched over.
Shining ran over to support her as we all looked concerned.
"I'm okay." she waved off Shining as he frowned.

"Cadance has been using her love magic to protect the empire, but she can't hold on forever and my counter shield isn't working anymore thanks to whatever Sombra did." He sighed.
"That's why we're all here. Tah help ya out!" Applejack chimed in from behind me as the other ponies nodded in agreement.
Shining looked unsure for a few moments before he sighed and gave in...
"It seems I don't have much choice. I'll stay here and help Cadance, while you eight walk around and see if anypony knows a way to defeat Sombra." He instructed.

"Will do!" Rainbow saluted as she started shoving us about, "Come on guys! Let's get moving already! We don't have all the time in the world ya know!" She teased as we left the building.
"Okay Rainbow, we'll get going." I laughed, trying to humor her as she wanted to help us make light of the situation.
As far as anypony knowing anything about the Crystal empire? Nothing.
Not a single pony we talked to could provide us with useful information.
It was either 'I can't recall anything since this morning, sorry.' or 'I'm sorry, who are you again?' or even 'If you're not here to bug me about my water bill then I can't help you', which took us back to square one.

I groaned as I leaned against the back of a crystal building, and frowned.
"So, did anyone else have better luck?" I asked as the rest of the team met up in the center of town.
Rarity, Applejack, Twilight and Spike shook their heads. Rainbow huffed annoyed but shook her head, "Nah, they kinda don't like direct confrontation.." She admitted.

"Rainbow Dash!" Applejack scolded her as she flicked the pony on side, making her lower her gaze for half a moment.
"What about you Fluttershy?" Twilight asked as Fluttershy just stood there for a moment.
"Uh, Fluttershy?" I asked, before Fluttershy put a hoof up to her chest and suddenly her skin fell off as it revealed Pinkie Pie???.
"My cover's been blown!" Pinkie whispered to Twilight as she dashed off.
We all just sorta stared confused before Fluttershy, the real one, appeared and walked over onto the fake Fluttershy costume.

"What did I miss?" She asked, before she looked down to her hooves confused, "Uh, and what am I standing on?" She said, as we honestly just sorta blinked at her not knowing what to say...
Applejack broke the silence by sighing, "I'm sorry Twi'. These crystal ponies seem to have some kinda collective amnesia or somethin'. Only thing I was able to get out of 'em was somethin' about a library.." She rubbed her neck embarrassed.
Suddenly Twilight gasped, "A library?! Why didn't you say so earlier?!" She squeed as she did a little dance, which honestly made me feel kinda embarrassed for the mare.
Rarity snapped her out of it though, as Twilight blushed before clearing her throat. "Um, right. Let's go girls." She said, as we all followed Applejack to the library.
" I just... I don't even know what to... There are no words!" Twilight gasped as she ogled at all the books in the ginormous library.
I chuckled, "How about breathtaking?" I jabbed at her moment, as Twilight just made a face at me before returning to admire the books.
"Woah. How do are we gonna find what we need in this?" Rainbow zoomed around, still twitchy from this morning and raring to fight.

"Ahem, can I help you?" An elderly voice spoke as a grey faded mare walked our way and smiled warmly with the affection of a grandmother that knows no bounds of love.
I picked the time to speak since everyone was still admiring the place.
Hey, when you've seen one library, you've seen them all in my mind.
"Yes. We're looking for a book." I smiled warmly as I placed my hoof out to shake hers and she returned the favor. "Crystal Gem." I replied as I introduced myself.
The old mare chuckled, "Amethyst Maresbury" she smiled, as for some reason the exact moment she said her name my heart leaped with wild abandon before she spoke again. "Well, we most certainly have plenty of books." She grinned as she pointed to the stacks and stacks of books towered in the building.

"You do~! You really do~!" Twilight sung as she was still lost in her own world as I just snorted at her display, rolling my eyes.
"That's great Amethyst, but we're looking for a history book." Applejack rudely butted in, her ears twitching in impatience like they were burning...
"History... History.." Maresbury squinted as her mind seemed to be processing the request before she shook it sullen.
"I'm sorry dearies, I can't seem to remember." She frowned before muttering to herself, "Come to think of it, do I even work here?" She stared blankly as she started to trot off in a stupor.

Rainbow frowned, "I Guess we'll just find it on our own!" She shouted before dashing at the top shelves and flinging books everywhere.
"Rainbow dash!!! That's no way to treat history!!!!!" Rarity shouted as she took off after Rainbow.
Applejack and I shared a glance of unease as the mane six, and Spike, started to embark in search of a history book. "Anyone else starting to get the feeling this is a lost cause?" Applejack asked rhetorically as I just sighed and went to look too...
The library was so huge that even after spending an entire hour searching we hadn't even scraped the top layer. (And I only say that because Rainbow flung most of the books out in the open, causing a mess and making it even harder for any of us to sift through what we needed).

Twilight sighed as she closed another book and set it down. She had bags under her eyes and the others shared the same looks. We were tired, and no where near our intended goal.
I frowned as I walked over to table with a neat little blue cube in the center, probably used for decoration, and sat down. "Let's face it. We're not getting anywhere and Sombra is growing stronger the longer we wait." Rarity admitted as we all sighed.
I leaned back, letting my hooves reach my neck and rub the sore spots out. "Yer right Rarity. This is getting us no where fast an-" At the exact same moment, my hoof tapped the blue cube-like decoration and sent a jolt of magic running down my spine, as it suddenly glowed and hovered up in the air.
"Uhh. This is the...Animorph...Wade. Call me...if you need any help?" A voice suddenly spoke from the strange blue device, before it dimmed and floated down into my hoof as I decided to change into my human form to examine the odd object closer with my fingers...

"W-what? Who was that voice??" Twilight sputtered astonished as I held the blue cube in my hands and felt the smooth cool surface of it and brushed some of the dust off.
I frowned as the cube did nothing more than remain dormant in my grip, "I'm not sure. It's not doing anything now." I admitted as I rapped my knuckles on it to make sure.
"Do ya think it might be like, the actual librarian of the place? This-... Aniwade?" Rarity said hopeful.
I shrugged as I examined the cube closer.

There was a form of magic inside of it. I could tell that much. Twilight had showed me a couple of weeks ago how to detect for magical residue. But... This magic was wild, raw, not organized yet somehow was??? Something was holding it in place, like a switch ready to light a room as soon as it was flipped.
"Who cares who it was!" Rainbow interjected as she zoomed up to take a closer look, "The voice said it could help us so let's call 'em!" Rainbow smiled.

Now normally, I take Rainbow's comments with a grain of salt because they can lead to trouble if you give her free reign. However, seeing as we were running low on options and this Wade fellow sounded trustworthy, I agreed on doing just that.
For dramatic emphasis, and to just look cool, I held out the blue cube with my long skinny arm and chanted, "I summon thee shapeshifter from beyond to aid me in my quest of knowledge!" I shouted at the top of my lungs as nothing happened.

"Uh..." I said feeling silly as I relaxed my arm and held the cube closer.
Not hardly a second later that cube glowed blue for a moment, enough to blink and you'd miss it, before the magic it contained shot out from the device and grew in intensity a few feet away.

From experience, I took a step back, knowing that wild magic can be very damaging to those around it, and to my body *cough*. The magic began to clump into a ring shape, facing us sideways, like looking at a hula hoop someone is using, and started to manifest in a much more stable manner.
I start to hear a faint noise, that grew in intensity by the second until I am able to distinguish the noise.
It's the same voice I had heard a few moments ago from the cube, but it sounded like it was yelling? Shouting??

The next thing I know BLAM someone falls out from the portal face first, like doing a body slam into a pool, and I hear a resounding groan as I make out the figure just as the portal closes.
A man, probably around his twenties, was laying face first on the crystal floor groaning in agony as he pushed himself up into a sitting position and wiped his brown colored hair out of his face.

I stared in shock as I looked at this guy as he seemed to notice us for the first time.
"Great, ANOTHER Twilight to whine at me whilst taking a mountain of notes. Would you mind waiting, at least till I managed to..." He paused in mid-rant, clearly annoyed at just face planting into the floor, when his eyes snapped over to me and he appeared shocked.
"Pearl?" He said, as if he had just seen me moments ago...

Author's Note:

Shout out to Flutters Is Shy for teaming up to write a crossover of our fics and being ever so patient with me as I replied sporadically due to my odd schedule! If you haven't read their fic, you can do so here! ==>
Enjoy the next chapter! :3