• Published 1st Nov 2014
  • 8,954 Views, 673 Comments

MLDC: SHAZAM, Equestria's Mightest Mare! - Michael_Ravencroft



Something stirs beneath Equestria, dark forces and evil organizations plan to usurp the peace of the world. Sensing the coming storm, the Wizard searches for one who will defend this world, and become Equestria's Mightest Mortal!

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Lightning Strikes Arc Part 5: The Rock of Eternity

“That’s it Scootaloo, breathe in, breathe out,” instructed Twilight.

Scootaloo, in her alicorn alter ego form, Shazam, was sitting in the lowest level of Castle Concordia, Twilight’s personal laboratory. The Dusk Guard and many of the other ponies who worked in the castle knew never to go down into her laboratory unless otherwise told it was safe to do so. About the only one allowed to stroll in was Spike, but even he knew not to go opening the door to the lab without first knowing if Twilight was experimenting with a spell or concoction that was volatile.

The walls were reinforced with stone, a diamond shell, and spelled with many protective wards to prevent anything harmful or hazardous from getting out. Twilight had magically moved the majority of her equipment to a storage area and left the room mostly empty, barring a table with some books that read “A Young Unicorn’s Guide to Basic Magic”, “Magic 101”, and Dimwit’s Guide to Practicing Magic.

For the past two weeks Twilight had thought it best to teach Scootaloo the most basic of magic techniques, taking into account what she saw at the forest near Fluttershy’s home, she knew that Scootaloo had a ridiculous amount of magical power, and that it could cause massive damage if not properly controlled. It made the young alicorn shudder when she thought about what would’ve happened if one of her magic energy blasts had hit Ponyville during her battle with Tirek.

There would be no Ponyville, nothing and no one left…

Shaking the grim thought from her mind, Twilight went back to the task at hoof. A red rubber ball was in the middle of the room, set right between Twilight and Scootaloo. The transformed mare was currently trying to use telekinesis, a simple and basic magic ability that many unicorns master early on in their foal years. Teaching Sweetie Belle was not too hard, being a unicorn she already had a connection to her inner magical power, but Scootaloo on the other hoof was the opposite. She had too much power, and even though she seemed to master the spell, it had some…complications.

Scootaloo’s magical aura was bright blue, mimicking the color of the lightning within her chest plate. It wrapped around the ball and began to raise it five inches off the ground. The orange alicorn’s brow furrowed as she concentrated on the task, breathing in and out as she slowly gave the mental command to move the rubber sphere higher into the air and at a steady pace. The ball then rose to Twilight’s eye level, staying in that position.

“How are you doing Scootaloo?” Twilight asked.

“Just…fine, it’s getting a little easier,” said Scootaloo.

“That’s good. Now I want you to slowly lower the ball back down to the ground and we’ll take a break.”

Twilight watched as the rubber ball floated back down to the ground, she smiled proudly as she watched Scootaloo work. Although she was teaching Sweetie Belle magic, Twilight hadn’t taken on an official apprentice, but Scootaloo and Sweetie were as close to that as she was going to get. Her smile however started to fade when she noticed that the aura around the ball started to spark with electrical currents. Twilight quickly looked to Scootaloo’s horn and saw that it was also arcing lightning. The ball began to shake up and down, trembling as the lightning energy built up around it.

“Duck?” Twilight asked.

“DUCK!”

The ball bounced against the floor and shot up to the ceiling. It then ricocheted off the ceiling at an angle and flew towards the other side of the room. The dome like structure of the room, along with the emptied contents allowed the ball to continuously bounce around the room uninterrupted. Twilight hit the deck and covered her head with her hooves; Scootaloo was busy trying to tract the ball’s movements in order to get a handle on the super charged orb.

Twilight, after seeing one of the walls that the ball hit had a two inch impact crater, quickly created a shield around herself. Unfortunately she was not fast enough as the ball ricocheted again off the wall behind her and sailed right for rear, the strike resonating within the room with a loud “SMACK” as it did so, making the purple alicorn yell in pain from the hit.

Scootaloo had had enough and focused more on the ball. Her horn glowed as lightning sparked off it. Her eyes tracked the movement of the ball as it zipped around the room, remembering her moves from the Chimera fight, Scootaloo dashed forth. She felt as the world around her slowed almost to a grinding halt, her incredible speed putting her in a different speed zone that few, if any, could enter. Within this heightened speed state, she saw the ball move around. It was moving at a medium speed, but not faster than her. Scootaloo noticed that the ball was starting to make another pass for Twilight, but she wasn’t going to let that happen.

The demi-god mare intercepted the ball before it reached Twilight, striking it with her right hoof and exploding the rubber ball into shreds. Scootaloo stopped and everything returned to its normal speed. She quickly turned around and looked at Twilight with worry.

“Twilight are you alright?!”

Twilight, after making sure that the ball was gone, slowly stood up but winced from the pain that radiated from her now reddening rear.

“Well…I think I’m not going to be sitting comfortably for a bit, but otherwise alright.”

Scootaloo hung her head low with shame. “I’m sorry Twilight, I thought I had it! Ugh, this is so frustrating!”

“It’s alright. Most unicorns when using levitation can’t do it right because they don’t have a good enough grasp on their magical energy, but with you it’s the opposite. You have so much magical energy that it sometimes overflows and causes…well, stuff like this. We just need to help you figure out how to better focus your magic.”

Scootaloo sighed sadly. “I wish I had asked the Wizard some questions, but all I could think about was saving Apple Bloom, Sweetie, and Fluttershy…”

Twilight walked up to the taller mare and placed a hoof on her shoulder. “Scootaloo, you shouldn’t feel angry or upset because you chose putting your friends’ safety before everything else. Despite how it ended, you saved them, and they’re alive because of you.”

Scootaloo looked to Twilight and gave a small smile at her kind words.

“C’mon, let’s head up stairs. I’m sure you’re hungry, we’ve been here for hours now.”







The dining hall was large and long, just something you’d expect from a royal palace. Scootaloo and Twilight sat at the end of the long table and eating an assortment of prepared foods by the chefs of her castle, with Spike being the Head Chef and allocating his position to the Sous-Chef when he was busy with other duties around the castle or with Twilight in general.

“Hey, Twilight?”

“Hmm-hmm?”

“Do you think we should tell Spike at least about my whole…you know, alicorn transformation thing?” Scootaloo asked.

The filly pegasus watched as Twilight’s face scrunched in contemplation. She knew the importance of keeping her powers a secret, mostly because she didn’t know how Princess Celestia and Princess Luna would react to her presence. Although the two sisters were benevolent and kind, they were not above fighting something that could potentially threaten other ponies. And right now, Scootaloo knew that she was a danger to others, at least while in her alicorn form.

“Honestly…I’d rather keep this between you and me. We just got over dealing with Tirek and then there were those Sirens in the other world, I’m sure Rainbow told you about when I went there, right?”

Scootaloo nodded.

“Right now Equestria’s in a delicate state, plus…”

“Plus what?”

“There are a few ponies within the nobility as well as some foreign powers that didn’t exactly take too kindly to the Princesses bestowing all their power to me.”

Scootaloo gave Twilight a confused look. “What are you talking about? They did that to make sure that that Tirek guy didn’t get all the alicorn magic. You said it made you super powerful, like me right?”

Twilight took a bite of her daisy and daffodil sandwich before answering. “Yes, but that’s why they didn’t like it. I was equal in power to Tirek during our fight, some were speculating that even if I did defeat Tirek with the power I had, they didn’t think I would so willing give up that power. That I’d take control of Equestria for myself since the Princesses were without power.”

The young filly’s eyes narrowed with anger and indignation. “That makes no sense! You protected everypony! Why would they think that?!”

“Scootaloo, have you ever heard the old saying ‘absolute power corrupts absolutely’?” Twilight noticed the slightly confused look that the filly had on her face and decided to explain. “It means that if a pony has absolute power, sooner or later, that pony will become drunk on their power, and become something evil and bad. Tirek consumed magic, and the power he consumed the stronger he became, he was already evil, but the more power he gained the more he was able to delve himself deeper into that evil.”

Scootaloo thought about what Twilight said for a moment, pushing her sandwich around with her hoof as she did so.

“So…what you’re saying is some ponies might think I’m the next Tirek or Nightmare Moon and probably make me out to be a badpony?”

Twilight nodded solemnly.

“I know you’re not like that Scootaloo, but there are those ponies who will jump to that conclusion. That’s why we’re working to help you control your magic, so that ponies would have a reason to be afraid of you…but, it would help if we had more information.”

Scootaloo knew what Twilight meant. Since that day she revealed herself to be Shazam, and after telling Twilight how she obtained the powers, the alicorn mare had been doing a crazy amount of research on alicorns, ancient magical civilizations, and this so called “Rock of Eternity”. But so far every book and archive Twilight looked into turned up nothing.

“If it is information you want, all you need do is ask.”

“Did you say something Scootaloo?”

“Uh-uh.”

“It was I.”

Scootaloo and Twilight looked around the room, heads swiveling to and fro in search of the strange voice.

“On the table my dear Champion.”

The two ponies’ eyes went straight for the table and saw a strange sight. A pink, shimmering butterfly was perched right before them. Its wings moved back and forth in small movements, making sparkles of pink light fall from them.

“Um…Twilight…is it me or did I just hear this butterfly talk?”

“If you did then I’m not going crazy, or it means we’re sharing in a delusion or suffering from some food poisoning…”

“I assure you that you are both in perfect health.” The butterfly spoke.

There was silence in the room, and then a fluttering of wings as Scootaloo and Twilight jumped back from the table. Twilight’s horn flared as she prepared to cast a magic bolt at the unknown light creature, and Scootaloo prepared to use the Word of Power to transform.

“W-Who are you, and what are you doing here?!” Twilight demanded.

“I feel that introductions are best done face-to-face. Speaking through astral projections is good for communication purposes, but being the Princess of Friendship, I would assume you value interactions of a more personal nature. Also…” The butterfly lifted off the table and fluttered towards Scootaloo, hovering in front of her. “I’ve wanted to meet the new Champion for a while now, and I would very much like to show you around the Rock of Eternity.”

Scootaloo and Twilight’s ears perked up at the mention of the Rock of Eternity.

“You…You’re from the Rock of Eternity?” Scootaloo asked.

“Yes.”

“And…you can take us there?!” Twilight asked.

“Well…only the Champion can enter, outsiders aren’t allowed within it.”

Twilight looked flabbergasted at what the butterfly had said, and so too did Scootaloo.

“B-But I need Twilight, I want her to come with me!” Scootaloo quickly dashed for Twilight and held onto her right foreleg and shot the butterfly a defiant look. “Either she comes with me, or I won’t go at all!”

The butterfly was silent, but after a minute of silence, the pink butterfly nodded its little head. “Very well, I will permit her to enter. If you two are ready, we can leave at any time?”

The butterfly watched as the two ponies nodded and proceeded to exit the dining room. Twilight and Scootaloo gave chase; passing by several other castle personnel as they did, but when the butterfly passed by a Dusk Guard or an official, none of them reacted to its presence. The butterfly continued onward, coming to a stop before the door to Twilight’s basement laboratory. The mare and filly looked to each other in confusion as to why the butterfly would be leading them there. The butterfly then passed right through the door as if it were a ghost, and so, with a slight bit of worry, Scootaloo and Twilight opened the door to the hall that led down to laboratory.

For some reason the jaunt down felt…worrying. Scootaloo felt as Twilight placed her wing over her in a protective manner, she didn’t mind it, she actually liked it. Reminds me of Mom before…No! Don’t remember that stuff; focus on the glowing butterfly in front of you!

The three of them reached the entrance to the laboratory and Twilight magicked the door open slowly, expecting to find some sort of interdimensional portal awaiting them on the other side. Luckily it was just her regular lab. The butterfly flew till it was at the center of the room, prompting the two ponies to meet her.

“Alright, for now, since you are new to entering the Rock of Eternity, I will serve as your way in and out. Simply ask me to take you there and I will Champion.”

Scootaloo looked to Twilight, wondering if it was okay to do so. The purple alicorn nodded tentatively as she still eyed the butterfly with suspicion.

“Okay, um, take us to the Rock of Eternity, please.”

“Very well, here we go.”

The room started to rumble and moan as the light within it was sucked away. Little by little the shadows crept over everything, slowly making their way towards Twilight and Scootaloo. Twilight quickly hoisted Scootaloo onto her back, her protective maternal instincts kicking in. The butterfly was starting to become the only light source in the room as the room became pitch black. The was a sudden shift, almost faint, but it happened; almost as if the world was being pulled out from under them.

In the distance, a white outline of a door appeared. The butterfly made its way to the door and upon its proximity, the door opened to near blinding white light. Twilight and Scootaloo both gulped, wondering if they were somehow spirited away to Elysium before their time. But with remaining in darkness being their only other option, they moved towards the light, squinting as their eyes adjusted to the brightness.

When the two ponies passed through the other side, audible gasps rang out from both of them.

“Welcome Champion, and esteemed guest, to the Rock of Eternity.”





Cheerilee was a happy mare; for today was the day she was going to Wayward House to apply for Scootaloo’s adoption. She wasn’t going to lie, it scared her. This wasn’t an easy decision for her to make, especially with what others could say about her doing so. It wasn’t uncommon for a single mare to adopt a child, some older mares did so when they decided that they wanted to give more of themselves, wanting to fulfill that maternal instinct and give a foal a good home. Plus, she imagined adopting Scootaloo wouldn’t be too hard a task. It was an often known fact that older children were harder to adopt.

She knew why of course, a younger child would still be open to change and not as difficult. Whereas an older foal might have some problems and issues that they are working through from where they were brought from, a bad home, off the streets, it made them who they were and it was often a daunting task to penetrate the protective shell they had placed around themselves, and they were less likely to comply with their adoptee.

But that didn’t bother Cheerilee in the slightest, she’d seen Scootaloo grow into a fine young filly, and her friends have been a great influence on her, and Scootaloo seemed to like her well enough. Although, liking a pony as a teacher was a stark contrast to liking somepony as a guardian/parent. Suddenly she stopped mid-stride. Butterflies started to flutter within the maroon mare’s stomach, worry creeping into her heart.

Was this a mistake…? I can’t really expect Scootaloo to just accept me just like that…! Cheerilee you featherbrain did you even think about asking if she even wants you as a guardian?!

Well technically even if you asked and if she said yes, there’s no real guarantee that they’ll even allow the adoption in the first place. They do typically like to have a foal adopted to a two parent home instead of a single…

Cheerilee started to doubt that this was a good idea, and she was only just twenty feet from Wayward House. She gulped, suddenly slightly afraid of the homey orphanage before her.

“Maybe this wasn’t such a good idea…”

“Yep, knew ya get cold hooves.”

“EEEP!”

Cheerilee jumped back and stared at the pony who had surprised her. Her surprise quickly turned to irritation when she noticed who it was. A purple grape colored earth pony mare stood before her, eyes a soft shade of magenta, a mane and tail that were a tad darker than her coat, and a cutie mark of grapefruit on her flank.

“S’up Cheers?”

“Hi Berry…What are you doing here?” Cheerilee asked.

“What, I can’t come and support my sister when she’s about to make a big, life altering decision? Especially when she doesn’t even bother to tell her beloved little sister?! I’m hurt!” Berry moved her hoof to her forehead to feign said hurt, but then winked and stuck out her tongue playfully.

“Yes, well…I didn’t need to burden you with my problems, you already have your hooves full with Berry Pinch and –”

“Oh, you mean our secret love child?! You remember her name! ”

“BERRY! I don’t have time for your dirty, inappropriate humor, so save it for your bar patrons!”

Berry Punch was slightly taken aback by the anger level in Cheerilee’s voice. Usually her big sister would brush off her humor, chuckle, smile and say “Sure, sure”, sometimes she would even shoot back with one of her own and the two would laugh out loud. But that wasn’t the case right now.

“Jeez Cheers, what crawled up your plothole and died? I was just trying to lighten the mood,” said Berry.

“Yeah, well…it’s just…I’m……” Cheerilee then released a frustrated sigh. “I’m sorry Berry, I’m just a little stressed out is all.”

“Because you want to adopt a foal, and not just any foal, one of your students at that.”

Cheerilee looked at her with utter confusion. “How did you know…?”

Berry walked over to her big sister and threw a foreleg across her withers. “Let’s see, you talk about this one filly and her friends a lot about how they make your day both fun and exciting, and yet stressful. Among them you mention a pegasus filly that lives at a place called ‘Wayward House’, which is where we’re at, that’s gone through a lot and how you find it sad.”

Cheerilee blushed as her little sister recounted this conversation. “When exactly did I tell you this?”

“Hmmm, about three and a half months ago. You stopped by my bar one weekend and we shot the breeze while tossing back a few, you got hammered and started spilling about all kinds of stuff.”

The school teacher’s blush intensified as her mouth hung open, completely mortified by her behavior. “W-W-What?! I don’t…I barely remember that happening!”

“Well how else do you think you ended up in your marefriend’s place?” Berry asked with a smirk.

Cheerilee could’ve been mistaken for Big Mac at that moment. Berry Punch chuckled at her sister’s flustered state and decided to take pity on her.

“C’mon, let’s head to my place.”

“B-But I-I have to – I mean, I have to go and –!”

“Cheers, not to sound negative, but with how nervous and flustered you are you’d probably give them the wrong idea. You want to make a good first impression, right?”

Cheerilee looked from the compassionate eyes of her little sister and back to the orphanage. With a reluctant sigh, Cheerilee nodded a “yes” to Berry Punch.

“Alright, Pinchy’s going to love seeing her favorite aunt.”

“I’m her only aunt,” said Cheerilee.

“Huh, guess that’s it, chosen by default.”

Cheerilee elbowed her sister in the side, it was a light jab, enough to tell her to stop, but at the same time playful enough that it brought a smile to Berry’s face.





Twilight was officially having a “nerdgasm”. When the two ponies exited the door they walked right into the largest, most expansive library that either of them had ever seen. Books were automatically re-shelving themselves as they floated from one end of the bookshelf to another across the way. Bookshelf upon bookshelf was filled with ancient and forgotten tomes and texts of all kinds, a large rotunda of knowledge that seemed to stretch all the way to a never ending ceiling. Warm, golden light bathed over the area, making it just bright enough to read the books without being too dim to hurt your eyes.

Scootaloo playfully rolled her eyes as she watched Twilight zip from one bookshelf to the other, like that Zipporwill filly she saw at the Pony Tones’ concert. The butterfly landed softly on the bang of Scootaloo’s mane as it watched Twilight’s peculiar movements.

“Champion, is your friend…well? Or does she have a bit of the madness?”

“If loving books counts as madness, then yeah, she’s nuttier than a fruitcake.” Scootaloo chuckled at her joke before crossing her eyes to look at the butterfly. “Okay, so, are you going to tell us who you are or what?”

“Oh yes! Pardon me, just a moment.”

The butterfly floated up into the air and dissolved into particles of pink light. Scootaloo felt a sense of panic, wondering if she had demanded the impossible and the butterfly perished as a result of her demand. However, her fears were quickly put to rest when the particles multiplied and recollected on the floor a few feet away. The sparkling dust started to take on the form of a pony; Twilight saw what was happening and quickly made her way back down to the floor, standing right beside Scootaloo.

The sparkling dust then combined and formed a solid body with a flash of pink light. When the flash subsided, what stood before them was not a butterfly, although this equine being did have beautiful, translucent butterfly wings that shimmered as they made the slightest move. She was taller than Scootaloo, but only came to Twilight’s chest. Her coat was a soft pink, eyes like sapphires, and a long aquamarine mane that flowed down her shoulders. This mare before them also had a horn in the middle of her forehead, but it wasn’t the natural spiral of a normal unicorn horn, it was slightly curved, almost like a blade.

“My name is Murmur, and it’s a pleasure to meet you Champion.” Murmur then bowed before Scootaloo.

The orange filly, while feeling a bit of pride from the display, was feeling uncomfortable with the bowing of this mysterious mare, butterfly, thing.

“O-Okay, you don’t have to bow. So you’re name’s Murmur, uh, what are you?”

Murmur rose up from her bow and happily answered Scootaloo’s question. “I am a flutterpony, although, you may know my kind more infamously as changelings.”

Twilight’s and Scootaloo’s left eyes began to twitch in sync with each other at the mention of changelings.

“YOU’RE A CHANGELING?!” Scootaloo exclaimed.

“Well, technically yes, but we differ greatly by a few hundred-thousand years or so.”

Twilight had to stop and think about that number for a moment. “Wait…you said a few hundred-thousand years, how old are you?”

Murmur put a hoof to her chin in contemplation. “Hmmm, I kinda lost count around 255, 086. But with the way I am, age and time don’t really hold sway over me in the Rock of Eternity.”

Scootaloo was starting to get a headache with all this magic stuff, even Twilight was starting to get one and she was the expert on it.

“Okay, what is the ‘Rock of Eternity’ exactly, what is with this power I have, where are we exactly?!” Scootaloo asked.

Murmur chuckled lightly and turned around. “Perhaps an explanation along with visual aids would help. Please follow me.”

Twilight and Scootaloo shrugged and followed Murmur. Scootaloo noted that as they walked through the halls of this castle like place that the atmosphere was a lot brighter. The last she was here it was darker and felt old. Although that could’ve been due to where she was inside the structure and now she was in a place that had more light than where she was at before.

The three ponies continued down the long hallway till they arrived at their destination. When they exited the hall, they were surprised to see a large flat surface, like a platform. Above them was the bright blue sky with just a few strands of clouds hanging around. Twilight and Scootaloo walked further out onto the stone platform, trying to see what exactly Murmur wanted to show them. When Twilight looked back to Murmur her eyes were drawn to the large pyramid structure that was behind the flutterpony. Scootaloo soon followed Twilight’s gaze and stared in awe at it, the pyramid had to be twice the size of Canterlot Mountain, if not three or four at the very least. The stone was stacked like stones, one on top of the other. At the very tip there were spires that resembled castle turrets and towers.

“This…This is the Rock of Eternity?!” Scootaloo asked.

Murmur flittered over to Scootaloo’s side as she shook her head. “No, no, no, the rest of it is down below.”

Twilight and Scootaloo made their way, carefully, to the edge of the platform. Only to find that the platform was just a small segment of the giant structure. The edge sloped and kept going further down. The two ponies made their way to other side to find a better angle. When they did, Twilight and Scootaloo found that the giant structure continued downward, matching the height of the tip. The width and circumference of the Rock of Eternity was beyond Twilight’s ability to calculate without the proper equipment.

“This thing…is massive…” Twilight spoke in astonishment. “How…How was this created?”

“The Rock of Eternity was forged from the most ancient of magics; it is the source and the container. The structure itself was formed from two opposing, yet equally powerful land masses. The top half of was created from a portion of land from Elysium. While the bottom half was created from a portion of the land that comprises Tartarus. Both halves held together by a magic that brings harmony to both warring sides and subdues their rage towards the other, in order to create the ultimate fortress of magic and storehouse of knowledge, the Rock of Eternity.”

Scootaloo tried to comprehend what Murmur had just said. The thing that they were standing and were inside of earlier, was in fact made of one part Elysium, the place where all good ponies and heroes of the past go to rest after they die, and the other part Tartarus, the place where evil ponies, criminals, and creatures like Tirek were sent to spend the rest of eternity in fire and darkness. For a while now, Scootaloo, as well as other ponies, knew that Tartarus existed, Tirek and Cerberus were clear indications that it did exist. So by that logic, Elysium existed too. But everypony believed it was place that could only be entered by the spirits of the departed.

Twilight went to Tartarus, but she only got as far as the gates and never went into Tartarus herself. Princess Celestia, Luna, and Cadance were banished to Tartarus by Tirek, but they were alicorns, and Tirek was…different, as strong as an alicorn. But now, here she was, standing atop an amalgamation of both.

“Murmur…how did this – how was this all built, and how is it connected to my powers?” Scootaloo asked.

“That my Champion is an excellent question.”





Murmur took them into a room that held a single book. The flutterpony used her magic to open the tome and immediately light flooded the room, taking shape and form, becoming holographic images of civilizations that existed long ago. Scootaloo and Twilight stuck close by, watching as Murmur’s magic resonated with the book’s and allowed her to begin the story.

Eons ago, before the founding of Equestria, before the rulers of Night and Day, and even before the rule of the Lord of Chaos, there was the Council of Magic. They were made up of six unique ponies, each possessing incredible magical power that equaled that of a god. These ponies saw that the world of Equus was a harsh land, governed by the strong who swallowed the weak, and corrupted the innocence of all things good. The Council of Magic could no longer stand and watch as this injustice went on and decided to act. They used their magic to forge the Rock of Eternity, uniting it to call upon the ancient magic. Together, with their newly created fortress, the six gods fought against the corruption at its root, The Seven Deadly Enemies of Mortals.

Each one was a demonic entity that represented a mortal sin of ponykind. The first was Lust, the sin who used her power to make many fall prey to their depraved desires and to defile and ravage. Mare, stallion, and foal, all were equal in her eyes, and all could succumb to debauchery. The second was Gluttony, the demon which consumes and consumes but is never satisfied, eventually bringing ruin to everything, even oneself. The third was Sloth, his brought about apathy and laziness, sapping the will of others to walk, talk, or even care about others.

The others were Anger or Wrath as he liked to be called. He steeped himself in violence, murder, and bloodshed, be it friend, foe, lover, brother or sister, mother or father, child and parent, all would kill and spill the blood of their fellow pony without reason or mercy. The fifth was Envy, his power caused mortals to covet that which they believed to be rightfully theirs, so much so, that they would indeed kill to have it. Whether it was beauty, wealth, power, nothing was too simple or too grand. The sixth was Greed, although not the strongest, his power does bring great woe and destruction, making other ponies take and take until there is nothing left for anypony. Food would be scarce and they would hoard, the poor would die and be sold into slavery for they were taken for all their money.

And the lastly, but not at all least, was Pride, the most powerful and destructive of all the seven. Her power was the cause of many wars and deaths across the planet, and it is she who leads the Seven Enemies. The six gods fought against these seven demons in a titanic duel that ravaged the planet and nearly tore it in twain. In the end, the Council was able to seal the Seven Enemies within the depths of Tartarus, and it is there that they will remain until the end of time.

“What happened after the battle? To the ponies who were left after they endured such devastation?” Twilight asked.

“Yes, so much devastation. But unfortunately, all was not well…”

The Council of Magic saw the destruction caused by their war with the seven and decided that they should never set hoof on the mortal world again. They retreated to the Rock of Eternity; from there they watched as the remnants of the ponies left picked up the pieces and forged new kingdoms and territories. And, although not as severe as when the seven were more present on Equus, their influence had not diminished. It was clear to the council that order and harmony needed to be restored, but they could not be this symbol for they had a hoof in the destruction.

So, they decided to pool their magic together and grant it to a chosen individual, one who would wield their collective powers in one body and become a symbol for the weak and defenseless to rally behind and give them hope. They created the Word of Power, a magic incantation that would combine their powers, and so they used the first initial of each of their names in order to create this word.

S, for the Wisdom of Star Swirl.

H, for the Strength of Herakles.

A, for the Stamina of Atlas Shrug.

Z, for the Power of Zeus Thunderer.

A, for the Courage of Achilles Heel.

M, for the Speed of Mercurius Zephyr.

So was born the Word of Power, the word that means power incarnate and would be the battle cry of the Mightiest Mortal and Champion of Magic…SHAZAM.

Before each of the letters stood the image of the one of the six gods, Scootaloo had to bite her lower lip to stifle a gasp. The six pony gods looked exactly like the strange ponies that were in her dream not too long ago. And now that she saw this, saw them and what they were, Scootaloo began to wonder if that dream wasn’t a dream, but a vision. And if it was, they weren’t hurting those two ponies, they were giving them power like the Wizard did for her.

“Murmur, who was it that they picked to be the first Champion?”

They, Scootaloo. The first champion was made up of two ponies sharing the power equally in one body.” Murmur lit her horn shifted the scenery around, before them stood the two foals that Scootaloo saw in her dream long ago. “The colt was named Adamant Resolve and the filly was Alchemy. They were brother and sister, sold into slavery after their father had laid with an earth pony mare, which most were slaves under the rule of the privileged, be it pegasus or unicorn. They were beaten, tortured, and defiled, suffering their whole lives.”

“The Council saw something within them, the potential to bring about great change. They had suffered hardships and still fought to stay alive and keep each other safe. It was because of these traits that they were summoned to the Rock of Eternity. But unfortunately, it was after the older brother had suffered mortal wounds in protection of his sister. Alchemy begged the Council to save him, and the only way was for the two of them to share the power and become a single being. And so they agreed and the word was spoken.”

“SHAZAM!!!”

The image of the two ponies was then struck by lightning and what emerged from the smoke was a male alicorn. His suit was black, with golden gauntlets and greaves similar to Scootaloo’s. Upon the alicorn’s chest was a golden thunderbolt insignia, and just like her own, it too held the magical lightning. His mane was black, but his coat was dark violet, giving him an intense visage, but his eyes were gentle and soft, but they did not hide the great power that lay behind them.

“Their united form’s name was combined from both their names. Teth, meaning black, and Adam, from Adamant, thus was born Teth Adam.”

“‘Black Adam…’ sounds like a dark name for hero,” said Scootaloo.

“Actually Scootaloo, in Neighgyptian times, black was generally associated with good, mostly because it was the color of fertile soil. And, if I’m right, Alchemy is a name that means ‘black earth’.”

Murmur nodded her head. “You are correct Ms. Sparkle. So it was that Black Adam would come to be known as the great hero, using their power to bring down the tyrannical society that made many suffer, freeing many pony slaves and other subservient sentient beings, such as minotaurs, griffons, and many more.”

“What happened to them next?!” Scootaloo asked excitedly.

Twilight watched as Murmur’s normally happy expression turned to a frown. “They fell, neither member of the Council of Magic understood how or why, but Black Adam changed. He became obsessed with the power, conquering one kingdom after another and bringing them under his rule of power and might. The Council could not take away his power; so instead, they sealed him away, locked inside of a sarcophagus for all time.”

Murmur transported them with fluid use of her magic to the hallway that Scootaloo recognized. It was the hall that led to the throne room, the one that had the tapestries.

“From Black Adam rose better heroes, true Champions of Magic that upheld the ideals of justice, harmony, and peace.”

Scootaloo and Twilight stared at one tapestry after the other, reading the names of the various heroes who held the title of Champion and the power of SHAZAM for countless millennia. It felled Scootaloo with a sense of pride to be included in this pantheon of heroes who changed the world and made a difference. Granted it was a shame that nopony knew of their sacrifices and struggles, nor of their heroic deeds, but, Scootaloo thought, maybe she could bring back the legacy.

Twilight felt the need to ask upon hearing whose name the S stood for. “Wait a minute, Star Swirl, as in Star Swirl the Bearded?! He was on this council?! B-B-But that pony didn’t look a thing like him!”

Murmur seemed confused but it quickly dawned on her what she was talking about. “Oh, you mean Star Swirl the second.”
“The ‘second’?”

“After a worthy champion was decided, the six relinquished the remainder of their powers to Rock of Eternity and entered the mortal world. Star Swirl became a great scholar of the magical arts, and down the line, through his lineage, was born the stallion you know as Star Swirl the Bearded, but in actuality, he is really Star Swirl II.”

“Bubba – he – amiomorphic – greatest sorcerer – the second – related to a –” Twilight then fell onto the floor, babbling like a madmare as her brain struggled to comprehend the fact the unicorn she most idolized was in fact the descendant of an ancient pony god, and that there were two Star Swirls and not one.

“I think you broke Twilight’s brain Murmur,” said Scootaloo.

“Oh dear, I did not wish to do such a thing! Does she require a healing spell, I know several?!” Murmur asked in a panic.

“No, she’s fine; her worldview has just been rocked is all. She’ll get over it, hopefully. Still trying to understand all of it myself really,” said Scootaloo.

It was then that they got to the end of the hallway and Scootaloo’s eyes found themselves drawn to a tapestry that read “Quicksilver”.

“Why do I feel like I know this pony?”

“Because you do, that is the Wizard that granted you your powers, although he was much younger back then. He saved my life, gave me purpose.”

Twilight, after getting over her little freak out, noticed that Murmur’s voice held a tone of sadness, and for some reason, she was talking about him in past tense. Scootaloo turned to Murmur with large eyes full of wonder and excitement.

“So that’s what his name is! Where is he, I wanted to ask him some questions about how to control this power?”

“Scootaloo…Champion, Master Quicksilver is no longer with us…”

And there it was, exactly what Twilight feared. “He’s dead, isn’t he Murmur?”

The flutterpony nodded.

Scootaloo shook her head in disbelief, it wasn’t possible. “N-No way, are you telling me that a pony as powerful as him died! He was alive when I left, how did die, why?!”

“It is…inevitable. When a Champion grows too old his powers suffer as a result, they weaken. So, in order to make sure that there would always be someone to fight against evil, the power seeks out a worthy successor or a potential worthy successor. And once one is chosen, the previous holder is allowed to go in peace to Elysium.” Murmur then gestured to all fifty tapestries. “Each of these is of a fallen Champion. That is what this hall is for, a memorial for the past heroes.”

Twilight and Scootaloo looked upon the tapestries, images of mares and stallions from ancient times each of whom fought to protect this world and did so till they grew too old and passed on the mantle to a new warrior.



BACK IN PONYVILLE…

Cheerilee was standing at Berry Pinch’s beside, the little unicorn filly, having been playing with her aunt for a while, had tired herself out while showing off how her magic studies have progressed. So Cheerilee volunteered to take her to her room for a nap. She gently lowered the young filly off her back and maneuvered her till her head rested on the pillow. A happy smile was still prominent on Pinch’s face, making Cheerilee smile back. She gently stroked her niece’s mane, making the filly nuzzle against the hoof of her aunt. Cheerilee released a sigh of content at watching the filly sleep peacefully.

“She’s got your eyes,” said Berry as she sidled next to Cheerilee.

The maroon mare knew what she was getting at and smirked at her little sister. “Yes, she does, and your horn too.”

“I don’t have a horn.”

“No? Then it must be for your horniness.”

“Ha, ha, ha, hilarious sis.”

“Thank you, I try.”

The two sisters shared a quiet giggle at the lame joke. Berry then looked down at her daughter and smiled the same smile as her sister.

“I don’t see why you don’t think you’ll be a good mother, guardian, whatever, to that filly you talk about. Look how well you do with Pinchy.”

“My niece, who loves me unconditionally, is different from a filly I have taught and sees me as a teacher. A shift like that can be a little hard for somepony like Scootaloo to accept. And…”

“And what?”

Cheerilee removed her hoof from Berry Pinch, who was now fully asleep. “I don’t know what she’s been through Berry, abusive parents, a runaway, what if I say or do something that makes her think I’m like somepony she’s afraid of? What if I drive her away? Or what if I undo all the good progress she’s made since being in Ponyville?! There’s so much that could go wrong, and that’s even considering I can adopt her! And –!”

Berry quickly put her hoof onto Cheerilee’s lips, silencing her big sister. She then gestured for the two of them to step outside. Once the door to Berry Pinch’s room was closed, the younger sister gave the elder a serious stare.

“What does your cutie mark mean Cheers?” Berry asked.

“What does that have to –?”

“I said, what does your cutie mark mean?!” Berry asked again in a firmer voice.

It was Cheerilee’s turn to be taken aback by the tone of her little sister. “It-It represents my love of teaching. To put smiles on the faces of the foals I teach, and to help them bloom into the ponies I know they can one day become.”

“Exactly, so how can you say you’ll be bad at taking care of that filly?! Sure, I’m not going to lie, raising a foal is different from being a teacher, but it’s not like you’re going through this alone! You have me, I may not be the best example, y’know, having Pinchy after a drunken escapade, but I’m still a mother! And then there’s Princess Twilight, I know she helped raise that little dragon of hers, and yes I know dragons are different from pony foals but that’s another matter, point is she has experience. Hay, you can even ask Derpy for help too!”

Berry then placed her hooves on Cheerilee’s shoulders. “Point is Sis, you care. You care enough to want to give her a good home and help her heal from whatever emotional scars she may or may not have.” The grape colored mare then brought Cheerilee into a hug. “You’re the best big sister ever, and you’ll be just as good a whatever to that filly.”

Cheerilee felt all the worry and doubt leave her body, the warm hug of her little sister somehow restored the confidence she had lost on her trip to Wayward House. The maroon mare then returned the hug, giving a sisterly nuzzle to Berry’s cheek.

“Thank you Berry,” said Cheerilee.

“Any time Sis.”

“Can I ask you a favor?”

Berry separated herself from Cheerilee looked at her sister.

“Will you go with me tomorrow? I want to try again and I…”

“Sure, I got nothing to do tomorrow. Pinchy’s going to be on a playdate with Dinky and Twist, so I’ll be free.”

“Thanks, again.”



MEANWHILE…

The tour was ended with Scootaloo returning to the throne room where she met the Wizard, now known as Quicksilver. The room wasn’t as dark as before, it was lighter, as if signifying a renewed vigor and power. The room itself was expansive, with a crystal orb sitting near the throne, held up by three ornate, iron posts. The throne itself was polished marble; the symbol of a thunderbolt was carved at the top, a symbol showing the rightful guardian of Rock of Eternity.

Scootaloo tentatively walked up the steps. When she reached the top, she gently touched the armrest, dragging her hoof over its smooth surface. The throne thrummed as it resonated with the power within her.

Twilight watched all this from below; she could only imagine how strange this was for Scootaloo. A filly, who lived in an orphanage, had no cutie mark and was barely able to fly, was now the sole protector of this gigantic floating fortress of magic and knowledge, gifted with the power of six god-like ponies culminated in one body, and hefted with the responsibility to uphold a legacy of heroes spanning ages forgotten to the sands of time. Twilight could barely fathom this.

I was worried about my role as a Princess of Equestria, whether or not I’d be a good ruler or if I was even really worthy of becoming an alicorn. Now, compared to all this, it seems like nothing.

Scootaloo looked to Murmur as she walked down the steps. “So…I’m really in charge of protecting all of this. And keeping the world safe from evil?”

“Indeed, a great responsibility, but one I know you can shoulder. The Living Lightning and Master Quicksilver would not have chosen lightly.”

“At least now I know what the Wizard meant when he said ‘another like him’. He meant Black Adam, didn’t he?”

Murmur shook her head. “I was not present during the choosing. I know not what Master Quicksilver saw in your memories. But keep in mind; it is not our past that defines us, but what we do here and now.”

Scootaloo thought about Murmur’s words, she wasn’t sure how true that was, but it did make her feel better at least. “Now if only I can control this power…”

“Don’t worry Scootaloo, some more practice and you’ll get,” said Twilight.

“Well, for the time being, there is a way for you do better access each power, at least until you can learn how to focus them all at once.” Twilight and Scootaloo looked to the flutterpony with wide eyes. “First change and I’ll show you.”

Scootaloo didn’t wait for Twilight’s okay; she quickly put some distance between them and spoke the Word of Power.

SHAZAM!!!

The lightning bolt struck Scootaloo and in an instant she was once again in the form of her alicorn alter.

“Okay, so how do I do it?”

“Do you remember when I was telling you what each of the letters stood for?” Murmur saw Scootaloo nod. “Call upon one of the gods’ powers. Repeat after me: Power of Zeus Thunderer, but concentrate as you do so.”

“Okay…Power of Zeus Thunderer!

Scootaloo suddenly felt the power of the magical lightning surge through her body, arching off of her horn, wings, mane, and tail in random intervals. But there was something different in this, she felt a stronger connection, more in tune with it than she did when she first called upon it. Scootaloo was starting to get the idea of how this worked.

Speed of Mercurius Zephyr!

The lightning stopped and Scootaloo felt the familiar sense of the world slowing down around her. To Twilight and Murmur, Scootaloo had disappeared and was moving around in a near invisible blur of red, orange, purple, and gold.

“This is so awesome!”

“EEEK!”

Scootaloo had reappeared behind Twilight and accidentally scared the mare enough to jump into the air.

“Oops! Uh, uh, Strength of Herakles!

The magic turned inward, infusing every fiber of the mare’s muscles with a strength that could move the very continents if she so wished. She reached up with a single hoof and caught Twilight before she landed on the floor. Twilight was expecting to hit the stone floor, but instead felt the cool metal hoof of Scootaloo. She opened her eyes and gaped at how she was being held in one hoof as if she weighed less than a small pebble.

“No more worrying about control, huh Twilight?”

“N-Nope, um, you can let me down now.”

Scootaloo did so gently, knowing that her increased strength was still in use. Murmur chuckled at the flustered purple alicorn, making Twilight blush.

“While this will give you better access and control, it is a crutch. When you can learn to control all six at once without speaking their names will be the day you have full control.”

“Well,” spoke Twilight, “it’s a starting point. At least now we can work on your control and where to train you in what. I think we should get back, I’m not sure how time works in here, but we’ve probably been here more than an hour. If the guards find out I’ve disappeared they go crazy and form search parties, ugh.”

Scootaloo nodded vigorously, almost bouncing with anticipation at how they were going to train. “Thank you Murmur, I promise I’ll come back and see you.”

Murmur bowed her head in gratitude. “Thank you Champion, and since you have shown a deep caring for my Champion, I shall grant you a boon Princess Twilight.”

The flutterpony’s horn glowed as a magic rune symbol appeared over it. The rune symbol then shot towards Twilight, landing on her chest and vanishing as quickly as it was placed.

“Now you may enter the Rock of Eternity whenever you wish. However, I’ve restricted your accessibility to mainly the library unless I’m around to escort you. You don’t mind do you?”

Twilight shook her head. “Oh no, that’s no trouble at all! I can’t wait to see what sort of books you have! But, how exactly do we get here? Do we call upon you?”

“You need to be either underground, or in a closed, but moderately sized room. For you Champion, merely will it and you will appear here, and Twilight, with the rune, simply channel your magic while meeting the first criteria and you will appear here again.”

“Cool, hey Twilight, I’ll get us back home!”

“Wait, what – AAH!”

Scootaloo used her large wing to drag Twilight towards her and held the alicorn princess close in a wing embrace. The Princess of Friendship blushed at the awkwardness of the situation.

“Let’s try two at once! Wisdom of Star Swirl , Power of Zeus Thunderer!

Lightning quickly enveloped both of them, Twilight thought that she was going to be electrocuted by the magical lightning, but miraculously she was unharmed, thinking that it was by Scootaloo’s will that the energy didn’t harm her. Scootaloo’s normally purple eyes were now colored light-blue, the same color as her magical power.

“Wow, never knew teleportation was that simple.”

Before Twilight could make any objections a thunderbolt shot down and struck them and in a flash they were gone.





All was peaceful in the laboratory, until two alicorns appeared in the middle of the room in flash of lightning. Scootaloo released Twilight from her wing embrace and let the older alicorn wobble around in a daze.

“Okay, traveling via lightning bolt is way more disorienting than teleportation…”

“Heh, sorry Twilight, I just got excited to try it out. But on the bright side, you could take me on as your personal student, like Princess Celestia did with you.”

Twilight stopped her wobbling around and went stark still. The idea of being a personal teacher like Celestia was to her had always been a secret dream of hers; wanting to pass on her knowledge of magic and the things she had learned as the Princess Friendship to a young pony so that they may carry them on to others. It was enticing, although she wasn’t sure just how much she could teach Scootaloo, she already outclassed Twilight in raw power. But that was minor, Scootaloo was seeking guidance and help in controlling her powers, and that’s what Twilight was going to do.

“If you want to Scootaloo, I’d be more than happy to take you on as my student.”

“YES! Let’s go to Sugar Cube Corner and celebrate!” Scootaloo proclaimed while unconsciously hovering in the air.

“Wait a minute, Scootaloo, there’s something I wanted to ask you before we did anything else.”

Scootaloo’s celebration was cut short; she floated back down to the ground. “Sure, what is it?”

“You said that the Wizard compared you to Black Adam…Scootaloo, in what way did you think he meant you were similar?”

The demi-god mare’s eyes went wide for a moment but then narrowed as her gaze turned downcast, her bangs covering her eyes.

“It’s nothing…”

“Well obviously it isn’t if it was a factor in choosing you.”

“Just forget it Twilight…!”

“Scootaloo I’m just trying to understand –”

“I SAID IT’S NOTHING SO LEAVE IT ALONE!”

Scootaloo’s eyes flashed with magical energy as the roar of thunder echoed within the room, making everything rattle and shake. Even her body was flaring with lightning, lapping off her body as her spread wings made her look even more intimidating than she already was. Twilight felt a surge of fear and out of instinct hit the deck and covered herself with her hooves. Scootaloo, after the anger subsided, looked upon the now cowering form of Twilight, and her heart sank.

“No…Twilight…I-I didn’t mean to scare you – I…I’m sorry I…”

Scootaloo felt her legs give out from under her as she slumped to the floor, tears stinging her eyes as she cried at what she had done. Twilight heard Scootaloo’s weeping and slowly raised her head up from under her hooves. Guilt and shame gripped at Twilight’s heart as she saw the filly turned mare cry on the floor. Twilight rose up onto her hooves and slowly walked over to Scootaloo. The purple alicorn then placed her left hoof on Scootaloo’s head and gently stroked her mane, while making soft shushing noise.

“It’s alright Scootaloo, you surprised me is all. I’m fine.”

Scootaloo looked up to Twilight; she then buried her face in Princess’ chest, crying more. Twilight held her close, almost forgetting that even though she may appear to be a grown mare, Scootaloo was still a filly underneath. But the reaction the young filly had to Twilight’s questioning made her worry.

There are only two things that the Wizard could’ve meant. Either he was comparing Scootaloo in the sense that she would become drunk on her power like Black Adam, which seems highly unlikely, there’d be no point in choosing somepony like that. Which leaves the only other one, which is…that you suffered like Adamant Resolve and Alchemy did…I hope to Faust that it’s neither.

Author's Note:

Next time in
SHAZAM, Equestria's Mightiest Mare!:

Scootaloo goes missing, and everypony starts looking for her! What could've happened to make the young filly disappear?! Find out next time!

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