• Published 27th Oct 2011
  • 2,665 Views, 132 Comments

Lunar Apprehension - Vypor

A mysterious pony attempts to show Luna her work is appreciated, but Celestia sees him as a threat.

  • ...

Prologue 1

Equestria. Approximately 8 years Pre-Lunar Banishment.

A storm raged through the forest, the thunder resounded across the hills, while lightning brought light to the seemingly endless fields of trees. It was a frightening night, and even the most hardened adventurer would have called off a trip until later.

But even as the rain poured down through the trees, a pained yelp showed that one pony was already adventuring. However, it certainly wasn't by choice.

Hoof planted in mud, the young pegasus mare struggled back to standing. She took a few more breaths and opened her faded blue eyes. They were slightly glazed over, and she looked blankly around the landscape, slowly shivering and shuffling forward. “E-Easy does it Gem...” She whispered to herself. “Don't get ahead of yourself... You've... You've made it this far...”

She stopped and blinked as tears started flowing down her face with the rain. “...W-Wherever this is...” Gem pushed forward, telling herself to stay strong. She had to, she couldn't just give up, no matter how lost she knew she was. But in her distraction, she tripped on yet another branch. And the dark gray pony braced for impact.

She lay in the wet beaten down patch of grass, and just started sobbing. She screamed out at the wind and rain as she shivered. “WHAT NEXT? WHAT DO YOU EXPECT OF ME?” More tears poured down as she looked up at the sky, her momentary rage turned back to sorrow as she whimpered out a single name. “C-Cyrus... I'm so... Sorry...”

Gem knew she had to continue to press forward if she wanted to find shelter. But she had nearly given up on herself by now. The only reason she kept going was the foal she carried. Resting a shivering hoof on her belly, she tore her mind from her misfortune. Whatever happened, she couldn't simply give up on her own child.

She stood up yet again, and walked forward. She would go, as far as she possibly could. As far as her legs could take her before she would even consider giving up. Gem was suddenly distracted however by a warm breeze. She stopped and raised her muzzle to the wind, concentrating on trying to find where it came from.

She felt it again and took a deep breath. It smelled rather stale, but fresh at the same time. Probably because it wasn't a cold howling wind. Whatever reason it was here, Gem decided that if it was warm, she had to get to where it was coming from. Neither she or her foal would survive out in the elements like this.

She nosed forward, and suddenly felt the rain stop falling on her face. “A cave?” She mused, easing forward carefully, she didn't want to lose her footing on such a rocky surface.

Gem contemplated going deeper, or simply staying in the entrance. At least the rain wouldn't be falling on her there. But she couldn't, something drove her to go deeper into the cave, and so she did. Gem knew it was risky, there were already good chances that the cave was already occupied.

She tried to stay as calm as she could, and even quieter still. But when her foot slipped, instinct drove her to cry out. She grunted as her head hit the rocks, and her body fell over the side of a hole. In a moment, she felt more terrified than ever before. She didn't know how deep the hole was, or what lay at the bottom.

Gem's answer came in a quick heavy thud as she quite literally hit rock bottom. She landed poorly, and the sharp pain through her right front leg told her everything she needed to know.

Worse yet, she had landed on her belly, and felt her foal move ever so slightly. The Pegasus closed her eyes tight and gritted her teeth. She might as well just give up now. Everything she felt was pain and sorrow, her foal couldn't survive a landing like that for long. And with ass lost and injured as Gem was, she might as well just give up as well.

“I-I am so sorry...” She wept, feeling her belly again. Tears stained her face as she lay her head down. “What did I do... WHAT DID I DO TO DESERVE THIS?” She just screamed it out, she didn't care anymore if something heard her now.

“What is the matter, child?” A voice suddenly spoke from nowhere. Gem cried out in surprise and lifted her head up, looking around. Suddenly fear of something finding her overcame her again, even though a moment before she didn't care.

“Speak young one, I will not harm you.” The mysterious voice spoke again. “What is your name?”

Gem slowly stuttered her name out. “G-Gem...?” She cowered down again as the voice replied. “Well then Gem. I see you are injured, you require help if you wish to survive.”

Gem muttered through her gritted teeth. “What's the point NOW...”

“Because your son will not survive without it...” The voice said to her rather seriously. “I saw your resolve even before you entered this cave. It is your fight for your child that gave you the strength to come so far.”

“S-Son...?” Gem said, holding her belly again. “But... How? How do you know?”

“I know much, Gem. But that must wait for later. You need help now.” The voice began to direct her. “I cannot physically help you, I am, as you would probably describe me. Ethereal. But I can guide you.”

“My leg though...” Gem whimpered.

“Are you simply being lazy now? You still have three others child. Is your foal not worth the effort?” The voice almost seemed to challenge her, and Gem realized the truth. She had fought for so long out in the forest, all for her child. She could certainly do it now. “Then tell me...” She spoke. “Where do I go?”

“I see you are blind, are you not?” The voice continued. “Yes... I am...” Gem sighed.

“Then follow my directions.” They spoke again. “Turn to your right until I say stop, then crawl forward. It will be a straight line to where you need to be.”

Gem nodded and winced, trying to ignore the pain in her leg was easier said than done. But she continued to turn till ordered to stop. Then she tilted to the side and began to crawl forward. She felt around with her hoofs till she found notches to grip. “How much further...?” She stopped, readjusting her broken leg with a wince.

“You are nearly there.” Came the response. “You will know when you reach it.” Gem nodded slowly and began to crawl again, and suddenly her hoof slid on a smooth portion of the floor. It seemed to be slightly elevated from the rest of the floor, almost as a platform.

“W-What is this?” She asked. “It feels... Like a giant gemstone?”

“That is because it is.” The voice spoke. “The crystal contains energy that absorbs into creatures nearby. This will accelerate your healing tenfold. And will save your foal.”

Gem took a breath and struggled to the top of the smooth gem. She felt the energy from it all around her. It was soothing unlike anything she had ever known. The pain in her leg began to subside, and she lay to her side, breathing softly.

“Rest easy Gem.” The voice told her. “You are safe here.” She nodded and closed her eyes. A smile crept over her face as she began to feel safe for once in what had seemed as an eternity.

- - - - - - -

As the morning rose, so did Gem. Greeting it with a wide yawn, which turned into a meep as the voice spoke to her again. “Good morning Gem. How are you feeling?”

Gem stopped for a second as she realized that she hadn't felt a bit of pain when she awoke, and a peaceful night's sleep as well. “I feel... Well I feel great. You weren't lying about this thing. Thank you so much... Umm...” She contemplated for a moment. “Uhh, do you have a name to go by?”

The voice simply chuckled. “Yes, you may call me Speil. I am, in a sense. This cave's overseer.” Speil then turned serious. “Which is something I would like to speak to you about.”

Gem looked up. “Speak to me about what?”

“Last night, I sensed you outside. I sensed your pain and fright, and knew you needed help. I knew it was not right, and that you were lost. Ponies do not simply wander out this far.” Gem listened quietly as Speil continued. “I am afraid I cannot guide you back to your home. Nor would a map help with your lack of sight, even if I were to have a map at all.”

“What are you saying?” Gem inquired.

“Would you consider this your home?” Speil simply said.

Gem sighed, she had already been gathering that from what they were saying. She knew she was completely and utterly lost, and all they had said was the truth. “So you want me to stay?”

“As I said, I cannot guide you out there. The greatest possibility is that you would become lost yet again, and chances are that you would not be so lucky as to find a cave like you did this time.” Speil sighed. “There is yet another question however.”

“What is that?” Gem said, sitting up.

“Your son.” Speil spoke. “Whether you realize it or not, the cave you sit within holds more importance to Equestria than you know. And I believe that not even the Celestial Sisters know of it.”

Gem thought for a moment. “Well... What is this place then?”

“I will explain that in due time.” Speil answered her. “But for now, what you must realize, is that this place would do well to have a guardian.”

“My son...” Gem said quietly, feeling her belly.

“Correct.” Speil sighed. “It is a task I did not wish to ask of you so soon after your ordeal. But if it is to happen. Then it must start soon, as your time approaches within nearly a month from now.”

“What will this mean?” Gem looked up again. “What do you mean by, 'guardian'?”

“The crystals here hold power, as you yourself have witnessed.” Speil began to lecture her. “But since there is no guardian, there is no protection. If one were to find this place, and had bad intentions. The power within these crystals would enable nearly anything they desired.”

“I wish I did not have to ask such a thing of you, but what else can either of us do, when you most likely will not be able to leave this place?”

Gem sighed, she knew it was her choice now. “You've been kind to me, Speil. And I must thank you for that. And I know, if I were to leave, I would likely lose my way yet again. I'm afraid I don't have a choice now.” She closed her eyes and held her belly again. “And if this place is truly that important. Then... Yes. As long as my son is safe, then please take care of him.”

“Then it shall be done.” Speil spoke. “I will do my very best to ensure his safety. Your heart is pure, with your care, I know he will grow to be an honorable pony.”

“Thank you...” Gem smiled. “It will take time to get used to life here. But... At least I am safe. Thank you again for that.”

“You are quite welcome.” Speil said. “Now rest easy.”

- - - - - - -
Nearly six weeks later
- - - - - - -

Gem rested, occasionally licking and whispering to her newborn colt. His eyes hadn't opened yet, and he lay up against Gem, her warmth made him feel safe and protected. “He is a beautiful child.” Speil spoke.

“I know he is, even though I cannot see him...” Gem smiled, nuzzling the little foal. “He does not have wings. But as I cleaned him, I felt a bump on his forehead. He is a Unicorn is he not?”

“You are correct.” Speil answered. “And he will be very skilled in his magic. A good Guardian's breed.”

“Tell me, what is his color?” Gem asked, holding him close as he yawned. “He is black.” Speil answered. “His mane and tail are a dark gray and green. And there is a greenish hint near his hooves.”

Gem smiled at what Speil said next. “He is quite reminiscent of his mother. But it seems he has spots on his rear. Blanket style it looks like.”

Gem sighed heavily. “...Like his father...”

They both went silent, till Speil spoke up. “I am very sorry Gem...”

“It's... It's okay. You didn't mean to...” Gem swallowed, blinking away the tears as she remembered the husband she'd likely never see again.

Speil decided to change the subject. “What do you want to name him?”

Gem stroked her son softly. “I've been thinking... And I decided on something of a name combination.” She smiled softly. “My husband wanted to name them Tey if they were a boy. But I wanted to name them Rim. So, I made a sort of combination. Tsyreim.”

“Tsyreim...” Speil mused. “It is a good name. And if I might add, mysterious.”

“I like that...” She smiled. “Yes. Tsyreim...”

- - - - - - -
About 6 months later
- - - - - - -

“Tsyreim!” Gem called out. “You're coming out right now, or you know the consequences.” She stood for a bit, since she had no sight, she depended on touch and hearing. And she had very acute hearing.

Picking up on a noise a bit further away, she walked over calmly. Then sniffing the air, she swung around. “You know what happens when you hide when it's time for you to bathe.”

“Extra long bathtime...” Tsyreim grumbles as he walks out of hiding. “I may be blind, but it's not hard to smell a pony who needs to bathe.” Gem said, nosing him toward the pool.

“Aww come on mom...” Tsyreim mutters. “I don't need a bath THAT bad. I haven't even been sweating today from exercise.”

“Well I can smell you. And if I can smell you, then you need a bath.” Gem said calmly. “Sensitive nose or not, no son of mine is going to go around smelling like that.”

Tsyreim suddenly breaks the conversation with a question. “How come I can't go outside? Sometimes I get so bored in here.”

Gem sighed and nosed him on. “Well for one, I don't want you to get lost. If you go lost, neither me or Speil can go out and find you. And do you know how sad that would make mommy?”

Tsyreim walked toward the pool, kicking a small stone. “Yeah... I know...” Stepping down into the pool, he sighs as Gem begins to scrub him down. Then gets a mischievous grin. He swings his leg, splashing water up on her.

She stops. “I'm sorry, did you just splash water on me?”

Tsyreim shuffled awkwardly. “Answer me Tsy.” Gem said again.

“Y-Yeah... Sorry...” He mumbled.

“No need for it.” Gem grinned, suddenly splashing water on him in return. Tsyreim grinned as well, and before long they were both laughing and splashing around in the pool, completely drenched. But completely happy.

As they settled down for bed, Tsyreim lay up against Gem and nuzzled her softly. “I love you mom...”

She smiled, hugging him back. “And I love you too Tsy... Don't you ever forget that.”

- - - - - - -
Seven years later
- - - - - - -

Tsyreim galloped up the hill, concentrating ahead, he took stock of the landscape in front of him. And out of the corner of his eye, he saw a colored flag. Instantly going into a roll, he snatched up a rock in his mouth and flung it in the air. Then swung to the side and kicked it squarely, the rock colliding with the ground about three feet from the flag.

Tsyreim smiled, walking to it. “Closer than before.” He said as Gem walked up. “How close?” She asked.

Tsyreim guided her from the flag to the spot, then stood back. “Oh is that all?” She mumbled. “I would have thought you'd be able to do better than THAT. Especially with as many times as I had you practice today.”

Tsyreim rolled his eyes and they both laughed. “Very good Tsy.” Gem smiled. “Just a shame you can't practice with something that moves.”

“Well ya know YOU could wear a target if you wanted.” Tsy grinned, guiding her back to the cave.

“Yes, but the problem is that I DON'T want to. Now take that grin off your face.” Gem smiled, bumping him as they entered the cave again.

“How went training?” Speil inquired as they entered, Tsyreim nodding it off. “Oh mom was just being as prissy about how I had to be perfect as she ever was.”

Gem giggled and continued. “Yes, I had to keep lecturing him on the time I took on fifteen Ursa Minors while carrying an unconscious pony.”

“...While blind. And they were actually Ursa MAJORS.” Tsyreim added, poking her shoulder.

“Oh good, something DID stick in that thick head of yours.” Gem laughed.

“If I had eyes, I would be rolling them.” Speil simply said. “I'll simply take that to be it went well.”

“Quite well.” Gem corrected them. “He is taking on the physical challenges exceptionally now.”

“Oh is he now?” Speil mused. “Then perhaps it is time to move onto the REAL training?”

Tsyreim paused for a second and looked at Gem. “Wait, is he talking about...”

“...Magic.” Gem nodded. Then giggled as she heard him give a whoop in excitement. Ever since Tsyreim had heard of the things magic could do, and the fact that eventually he too would be able to do them, he'd been excited about it. “Calm down now Tsy.” She said. “It is getting late today, but since Speil has seen fit for you to begin magic training, then we can start tomorrow.”

Tsyreim pawed at the ground, impatient to start. Though he knew it probably wasn't going to be as easy as he imagined, he still wanted to try his hoof at magic. Suddenly distracted by his mother's voice, he looked over to see her waving to him to dinner.

“Oh boy, grass. Again.” He muttered.

“Ok, well you can go peel bark off the trees if you want something different. That is, unless you feel like eating Poison Joke again.” Gem grinned.

“I was like, three years old then, mother...” Tsyreim sat down, glaring across their makeshift stone slab of a table.

“Well How about you stop complaining, and I'll stop bringing it up? Sound good?” Gem simply continued eating, knowing she once again had the last word.

Tsyreim chewed, switching from contemplating the grassy bland flavor, back to magic. What it might be like, how he might activate it, or use it. Either way, it would have to wait, cause clearly neither Gem or Speil was going to give him any further hint for tonight.

He got ready for bed, cleaned his teeth, and took a bath before Gem could pester him about it. Tomorrow, was going to be interesting.

- - - - - - -
Sunrise, the next day
- - - - - - -

Gem grunted, raising her head slightly. “Ugh... Why do I get the feeling I'm being stared down...?”

The answer came in the unmistakeable voice of her son. “Probably because you are. And have been, for ohh...”

“...Fifteen minutes, and thirty-two seconds.” Speil finished. “I had nothing better to do, so I counted how long it would take before he finally just woke you up. Clearly he has more patience when it comes to waking his mother up.”

“Best to be on the safe side, right?” Tsyreim grinned, then raising a hoof and bumping Gem. “So, you gonna come help?”

She rolled back over and groaned. “Do I LOOK like I have a Unicorn horn?” She asked. “How do you expect me to help when I can't do magic myself?”

“...Right. Okay then.” Tsyreim shrugged. “Well then, Speil? Shall we?”

“Do I have a choice in the matter?” Came the reply.

Tsyreim walked to the center of the main room. “No, not since you said so yesterday. Ethereal voices need to keep their word too ya know.”

“Yes, I suppose so.” Speil said. “Well then, we'll start off with something simple. Something that Unicorns use on a regular everyday basis.”

“Ok.” Tsyreim said, standign at the ready. “I guess you're talking about Telekinesis.”

“Correct.” Speil affirmed. “Now you have to realize something about magic. It is not simply cast and forget, Magic takes great concentration until you've practiced the spell enough to truly master it.”

“Ok, got it. Now how do I do it?” Tsyreim sighed, knowing despite how much he hated lectures, he was in for one anyway.

“Not just yet. Besides concentration, it also wears down on your strength. You will never see Unicorns battle with purely spells. Because the energy they drain is deceptive, you only realize how much you've used when you have stopped casting.”

“So it's mostly a guessing game?” Tsyreim asked.

“More or less.” Speil continued. “As you practice, you will grow more accustomed to your limits, when to stop, and when to resume. And the more you practice, the longer you'll be able to cast spells.”

“Exercise for the mind.” Gem yawned, walking over. “Less physical motion, with the same or more drain in energy.”

“So you do know about magic.” Tsyreim stated. “Who taught you?”

“Your father.” Gem simply said. “He was a unicorn, a teacher actually for magic students. Most of what I know of it he told me.”

“You never told me dad was a Unicorn.” Tsyreim tilted his head.

“You'll also notice I don't talk about your father much either...” Gem sighed.

Tsyreim paused, then walked over to Gem. Throwing his legs around her, he gave a tight hug. “Hey, mom... I know... It, it hurts. Probably more for you than me. I never met him...” He paused, looking away and trying to keep from sniffling, not wanting to look too terribly emotional.

“But maybe...” He looked down at her. “Maybe you SHOULD talk about him. I know you're kind of secretive about it... But you don't HAVE to be.”

Gem stayed silent, but feeling her shivers as she sniffled, Tsyreim knew it was probably for the best right now. “Hey, Speil...” Tsyreim looked back. “We can continue this a bit later. I still have the rest of the day to practice.”

“Understood.” Speil noted, then speaking up. “You know, it's a lovely day outside right now.”

“Hint taken.” Tsyreim said, leading Gem outside. He was anxious to learn magic, but his mother meant even more to him. And as they walked out into the sun, he smiled. It wasn't often that they really had quality parent-child time like this, even though they were the only ponies out so far. Most of the time was spent training and practicing.

This time was special however. When Tsyreim walked by his mother, he felt as if he was sheltering her, it made him feel tougher than any practice had made him. He opened his mouth, racking his mind for things to say. “You don't really have to talk about dad if you don-”

“I want to...” Gem simply said. “You were right, I should talk about him... It was wrong and selfish of me to keep that away from you...”

Tsyreim led her to a small clearing and sat her down. “No, you were being protective. You didn't know it was selfish, you thought it was for the best. Even though I wanted to know, I knew it was a sensitive subject for you...”

“I know, I know.” Gem sighed, clearing her throat so she wouldn't sound so choked up. “I just... Ah, here I go again. Just, what do you want to know about him?”

Tsyreim looked up at the sky, watching the clouds go by for a second. “Well... What did he look like?”

“According to Speil's desctription...” Gem started. “...Just like you.”

Tsyreim looked at her curiously. “Really?”

Gem nodded. “Yeah... Same blanket spots at the back, unicorn. You're built the same as he was too... Even the same sense of sarcasm...”

Tsyreim watched her, grinning slightly as he saw a small smile creep over her face when she spoke about him. “What was his name?”

“I never told you his name?” Gem looked up, rather surprised. “What kind of mother am I? I don't even tell my own son his father's name.” Tsyreim rolled his eyes, smiling. Gem was most certainly forgetful at times.

“His name was Cyrus.” She smiled warmly, her unseeing eyes staring into space. And even though they were blind, they gave every impression at that moment of seeing someone.

“Cyrus...” Tsyreim mused. “Was he a fighter?”

Gem chuckled. “He would have been if I wasn't with him. He was so protective, it always annoyed him when other stallions would even glance at me. He was paranoid in his own adorable way. But at least he knew he was paranoid.”

Tsyreim sat back, then looked back at Gem. “Where did you guys live? A big city? Or small town?”

“It was just a town, Saddleburg.” Gem shrugged. “Not really big or small. But it was perfect for us. Enough families to keep the town running well. And Cyrus' class was always full. He was many of the foal's favorite teacher.”

“Umm, one more question...” Tsyreim shuffled. “You don't have to answer this one if you don't feel like it, but... How exactly did you get lost?”

Gem took a breath and sighed. “Well, your father and I were on our way back from a business trip to another town. It was a bit further away, and to speed up travel since I was carrying you still, we hired another Pegasus to ferry us from one town to the other. But, he started feeling terribly ill near halfway there, and was having trouble continuing.”

Tsyreim raised an eye. “What would make him so ill so quickly?”

“We don't know, but I figured something happened while we were on business. Cause Cyrus gave him some money so he could get some food and drink while we were away. Maybe he got food poisoning.” Gem shook her head. “But it all went downhill as we passed over the Everfree forest... He had given up trying to continue at that point, and he started wretching while flying. Our air cart flipped, and Cyrus grabbed onto the cart to keep from falling. I spread my wings, but since I was blind then too, I didn't fly much. I tried to stay near the cart, listening to Cyrus... But his voice started getting fainter, so I started flying in the direction I thought he was... But... I went completely the wrong way...”

Tsyreim moved closer and put his legs around her softly. “Mom...”

She shook her head and kept going. “I started to panic, I started flying faster in circles, trying to hear him again. But since he couldn't fly, and our guide was too sick to fly, I couldn't find them. Eventually I grew too tired from flying, and settled down in the forest. I probably sobbed for five straight hours... I had no idea where I was... I finally started walking, and somehow after several days, I found this cave. I couldn't stop, I wouldn't stop. Because I wouldn't let myself give up on you...”

Gem stopped talking, she was getting too choked up to keep talking, and just leaned against Tsyreim. All the while, he simply sat, unable to find anything to say other than small mutterings that he desperately hoped were encouraging or calming.

Tsyreim realized that his mother truly believed she'd never see her husband again, or her town. And despite the fact that he himself had come to believe it as well, he felt challenged by that belief. And even though he knew it probably wasn't possible, he began to hatch a plan.

After awhile, Tsyreim returned back to the cave with Gem and resumed his magic training. And after accidentally smacking himself in the face with a few rocks, he had the basics of Telekinesis down fairly well.

He went through the normal nightly routine, but his mind was elsewhere. He lay in bed for some time before deciding Gem was really asleep, then he snuck back out into the main room. “Psst, Speil...”

“What are you doing up?” The voice echoed back into his head.

“I need to ask you something.” Tsyreim said, glancing back at his mother. “Something... Really important.”

“What are you planning?” Speil simply said.

“I need to know if there's a sort of spell that can like, guide me to places. Something I can use to mark a course, or to show a path.”

“Are you planning to run off and find something?” Speil questioned. “That is not the wisest thing to do.”

“Maybe not, but have you known me to be the type who really thinks and THEN does something?” Tsyreim tapped his hoof.

“No, you tend to do the opposite.” Speil stated. “But that aside, if you are planning something like this, I am going to have to know what and why you are doing it.”

“Then as long as you do not inform mom, then I'll tell you.” Tsyreim muttered. “She cannot know of this.”

“If it gets too risky, then I will be forced to tell her, you do understand this correct?”

“Fair enough.” Tsyreim nodded.

“Then speak.” Speil said. “What is your grand plan?”

Tsyreim grinned. “I'm going to find dad.”