• Published 21st Jan 2015
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The Awakening of a Tactician - Mountainmanmad

A young man decides to attend a convention with his friends dressed as his favorite character from the Fire Emblem series. Next thing he knows he's in Equestria.

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Chapter 2 - A stroll through Canterlot

Author's Note:

A small note before reading the chapter. It took me a while to settle on Robin's magic, but I'm happy with the outcome. I settled on hybrid mechanics. The way I see it, this is real life and not a video game. Items don't have 'uses' and they are hardly going to 'brake' when used enough. If something doesn't make sense write a comment below and I'll try to explain it better. Just... don't hate me if you don't like it?

While I wanted nothing more than to escape the city I couldn’t afford to make any mistakes. I was behind enemy lines and held the terrain disadvantage. Regardless of the power I wield, it won’t do me much good if I can’t hit anything. I took stock of my possessions as I hid in some bushes near the entrance of the gardens.

I had my Levin sword strapped to my waist, ready to see action at a moment’s notice. The only problem, however, is that its magic was severely drained. I scowled in frustration as I sensed the magic held within the blade had only enough energy for a single bolt. I can wield a blade and use it well, but it would do me little good in my current situation since most of the guard use spears. That, and things tend to die when you cut them. I don’t want to kill anyone.

I opened my robe to find four tomes I had nestled against the fabric, each secured in place by a strap. I had a tome of Elfire, a tome of Arcwind a tome of Rexcalibur and a tome of Elthunder. I placed my hand against each of the books and reached out with my magic. I was happy to find that, unlike the Levin sword, the magic within the tomes remained unchanged.

I took Arcwind from its position and opened it, feeling the breeze around me strengthen. I flipped through the pages, reading the ancient language I used to empower them. Unlike most unicorns, whose magic is mainly used as a utility, my magic is used as a weapon. I had no access to invisibility spells or support magic. What I did have though, was ingenuity.

Long ago before my imprisonment I realized the flaw with my magic. I couldn’t always rely on brute power to see my way through problems. So, through trial and error, I was able to bend my magic slightly to aid me in other ways. Arcwind alone allows me to cut my enemy with razor sharp winds, but by letting the wind carry me, however, I am able to significantly increase my speed. I had also discovered that by using small bursts of Thunder magic I am able to re-direct the spell of a unicorn; useful for one-on-one duels.

I closed the book and looked out towards the entrance of the gardens. Two guards were stationed on either side of the gate. I bit the inside of my cheek, thinking of a way to remove them. Elthunder would certainly do the trick, but the noise might cause some unwanted attention. If only I had Nosferatu…

I sighed and took Elthunder from its position. I needed to use enough power to render both guards unconscious, but not so much that it could kill them. I opened the book and quickly read over the ancient language needed for the spell. With the words fresh in my mind and a flourish of my hand I called upon the power within the tomb.

The ponies didn’t stand a chance as two bolts struck them from above; the gold armor allowing the electricity to flow through their bodies. Within seconds both guards collapsed into a twitching mess.

I rose from the bushes and quickly made my way towards the city, securing Elthunder back under my robe. I didn’t bother to check to see if my spell had done any harm to the guards. The lightning had been both visible and loud; no doubt others would have been alerted by now.

It didn’t take long to reach the streets of Canterlot, the cobbled roads blending nicely with the mostly stone homes. While it would have been nice to stop and admire the architecture, I was a bit preoccupied with a few dozen terrified eyes pointed in my direction. I smiled softly and tried to relax my body, hoping the skittish ponies would notice and relax as well.

More than a few seemed to notice the visible change. I watched as about a quarter of the crowd disperses, leaving me with a still decent number of terrified ponies. I reached into my robe and took hold of Rexcalibur, noticing many of the citizens backing up in fright. When they saw the book, however, the atmosphere almost immediately changed. The fear was still there, but it was buried beneath a layer of curiosity.

With my nose in the book I began to walk through the streets. The ponies parted for me like Moses and the Red Sea. All I needed to do was get to the gates without incident. Once out of the city I could make my way to the Everfree forest. I needed to check up on my outposts and home. Hopefully it wouldn’t be too much of a mess to clean up. I’ve missed 1500 ‘spring cleanings’ so I didn’t let my hopes get too high.

“Halt creature!”

I sighed in resignation. I expected to be called out on, but I was hoping it would have been from the guards at the main gate. I was already half way to the gate, hell I could see it from here. I pivoted on my heels, noticing a small group of soldiers making their way towards me. I returned my attention to the tome, finishing the last bit of reading.

Apparently the guard that spoke took offense to the lack of attention. His face grew red in anger as he leveled his spear in my direction. “Creature, as a sergeant of the royal guard I demand your attention!”

Well… it seems the guard has grown arrogant during my time of absence. It used to take a lot more than reading to get a reaction, let alone anger them. I closed my book and held it under my arm, gazing down at the soldier with a warm smile.

“I apologize, I just get lost in my books so often. Do you enjoy reading sergeant?”

My sudden question coupled with my causal easygoing tone took the guard by surprise. Years of training, however, allowed him to quickly recompose himself. His eyes softened and he lowered the head of his spear. “Creature, I’m sorry for the inconvenience, but I’m afraid I’ll have to ask you to come with us.”

I shook my head sadly, putting forth a worried visage. “I’m sorry sergeant, but I have an important meeting I must attend to. I can’t afford to be late so I’m afraid I must bid you good day.”

With that said I turned on my heels and continued to walk towards the entrance of the city, stunning both the guards and the nearby citizens. Nopony has ever gone against the guard before, let alone done so in such a casual way.

The sergeant spoke to one of the privates, his eyes boring into the back of my head. “Private, let the princesses know abou-”

He was unable to finish his command as ice suddenly erupted from the ground, encasing the pony and rending him immobile. The other guards backed up in surprise as the surrounding ponies screamed in fear. Panicked civilians ran in random directions like a chicken that had lost its head. With the street clear, all that was left were the guard and I, leaving little to wonder who the assailant was. The guards turned towards me, spears pointed at my chest as they prepared to fight the unknown creature.

The blue tome in my palm faintly glowed. Wisps of cold air flowed around me as the ground frosted over. My eyes glow a faint purple as I looked over the remaining guard, seeing the fear and determination on their faces. My smile never once wavered.

“White moves first.”

Celestia was enjoying her time at the party, eating a slice of cake as she watched her little ponies congratulate the six mares who had saved Equestria once again. Discord had caused a lot of trouble, but the power of friendship had once more saved the day. She returned her gaze to the confectionary delight, a feral look to her eyes as she prepared to assault the sweet.

She never got her chance as the doors to the throne room swung open. A lone guard rushed towards Celestia, a look of panic on his face.

“Your highness, there is a creature terrorizing the city and attacking the guard!” He reported, giving a quick salute in the process.

Celestia quickly grew serious, her smile disappearing into a thin line.

“What description can you give me of this creature?” she asked.

His response was haggard, “We are unsure as to what creature it is, but it is bipedal and without fur. It is also capable of using highly advanced magic!”

Celestia’s eyes hardened and she immediately rose from her seat, the cake already forgotten.

“Send word to my sister to join me at the front of the castle with the Elements of Harmony. Ensure that the guard holds off the creature for as long as possible until I arrive.”

The soldier saluted and quickly left the throne room to fulfill his ruler’s commands.

Celestia looked over her little pony’s faces, seeing confusion and fear the dominant reaction. She noticed the six mares among them as they moved through the crowd, Twilight Sparkle leading the group.

Twilight Sparkle, princess Celestia’s student, was currently confused, nervous and curious. She had listened as the guard described a strange creature that was supposedly fighting the guard using powerful magic. She thought back to her books, recalling any article that would fit the description with the one given by the guard. Unable to recall such a being she decided to ask her teacher directly instead.

Twilight gazed upwards towards her leader, the rest of her friends taking position on either side of her. “Princess Celestia, what exactly is going on?”

Celestia rose from her position and motioned for Twilight and her friends to walk with her. “It would seem that another foe of mine has returned from the past.”

Twilight, instantly alert, was ready to list off numerous questions. She never got the chance as Rainbow Dash beat her to it. “Oh come ON! We just defeated that loser Discord and now another lame villain is causing trouble!?”

Twilight was prepared to scold her friend when Celestia intervened. “I understand your frustration Rainbow Dash, but this enemy is far too dangerous for you to confront.”

Rainbow looked insulted as she was told somepony was more dangerous than her, the fastest flyer in Equestria! She was ready to argue this, but Twilight finally spoke up, “With all due respect princess, we just defeated Discord. His chaos magic was extremely powerful. Who could be more dangerous than him?”

Celestia sighed. She suddenly felt like an old mare near the end of her time. She smiled softly as she recalled a memory regarding a young filly that enjoyed studying in the gardens, studying near a very specific statue. “His name is Tactician, a mage of incredible skill and power.”

Twilight faltered in her step, wondering if she misheard her teacher. “T-Tactician!? The one you told me about when I was a filly!?”

Celestia nodded solemnly, not liking the look in the lavender mare’s eyes. The rest of the ponies merely looked to each other in confusion. Applejack cleared her throat, “Do ya think yall can explain who this ere’ Tactician fellow is?”

Twilight gasped and turned on her friend, getting ready to give one of her lectures. “Tactician is a mage who wielded powerful elemental magic some 1500 years ago. He was considered to be one of the smartest individuals in history. He and StarSwirl the Bearded were labeled pioneers in the field of magic!”

Twilight squeed and began speaking aloud to herself. “I need to get several rolls of parchment and bottles of ink! I have so much to ask him! How does he use magic, what species is he, what’s his favorite color!?”

Celestia watched the display with amusement. She found Twilight’s desire for knowledge refreshing, but this was not something she could pursue. She coughed into her hoof, pulling the mare back to reality.

Twilight immediately ended her rambling, scuffing the ground with a hoof. “Sorry!”

“Twilight,” Celestia began, “This is not something you can pursue. Tactician is considered an enemy of the state for a reason. He has committed numerous crimes, one of which alone would sentence him to life in the dungeon.”

Pinkie Pie hopped towards the front of the group. “Pfft, what’s the worse he coul-”

“He used dark magic to bring the dead back to life. He used the corpses as weapons against the royal guard,” Celestia intervened.

The mares stopped in their tracks, looking at Celestia with a mixture of surprise and horror. Twilight seemed to be the most affected. Such magic was unheard of and she felt herself become sick at the thought of defiling the dead in such a way.

The group of ponies moved with new vigor, focusing on intercepting the villain known as Tactician.

I looked over the remaining ten guards as they blocked my only exit. The wooden gate behind them was closed. From the looks the guards were giving me, they intended to keep it that way. Behind me was a path of destruction. The street was littered with pot holes from lightning bolts and numerous guards were encased in ice. Fifty guards had attempted to stop me, none of them succeeded. Ten more were hardly going to make much of a difference.

“Stand aside and open the gate before I decide to get violent.”

None of the guards moved.

I sighed and flicked my right hand upwards. A pillar of fire erupted from the ground behind them. The shockwave that followed blew the gate apart and sent the guards flying. All that remained of the gate were the smoking splinters that littered the ground. I put away Elfire and retrieved Arcwind. I immediately began reading the book, familiarizing myself with the spell.

I grumbled in annoyance as I was forced to switch yet again between tomes. Despite how powerful my magic was it had a major flaw to it. I could only use one tome at a time. The ancient language bound to the tome is what’s needed to cast the magic. Every time a different book is used, the previous bind is broken. The only way to re-invoke the bind is by re-reading the ancient text.

Binding myself to the spell once more I prepared to cast the magic. I wanted to get out of here before-


I wince as I’m assaulted with a verbal shockwave, forcing myself from covering my ears. I turn around to see the Royal Sisters, the mane six and what looks to be a hundred armed guards behind them. I bit my tongue to keep myself from laughing. Most of them had their ears pressed against the back of their heads.

I turned towards the blue alicorn, my cold eyes betraying my warm smile. “There’s really no need to shout Luna. I’m standing no more than 20 feet from you.”

The guard bristled in annoyance, unhappy that I was speaking to their ruler as such. Luna merely huffed in response as Celestia stepped forward. I noticed she didn’t look at me the same way as she used to. Where her gaze once held hate for me, it seemed to have died down to resignation. Perhaps she finally realized how wrong she was for hunting me.

Celestia cleared her throat before speaking, “Tactician… no, Robin.”

I actually raised my eyebrow at that one. Aside from Luna, the six mares looked towards Celestia with confusion. I guess she never told them my real name. She sounded kind of tired when she spoke my name. Maybe she’ll actually apologize. She’ll stop hunting me down and I can finally-

“For your crimes against pony kind I hereby sentence you to imprisonment,” Celestia finished.

… Or maybe she’s a fat fucking twat who sits on her ass all day doing nothing but eating cake.

I snorted and waved her off. “I haven’t committed any crimes that deserve putting me back in stone or behind bars. If you want to stop me, Celly, then you’re going to have to beat me.”

Oh, now she’s looking at me like I remember; enough rage to shoot lasers out of her eyes. Most of the other ponies had the same look. The cyan Pegasus looked ready to charge at me. Luna actually grinned when I used her sister’s pet name.

Luna stepped forward next to Celestia, her grin morphing into a smirk. “That shouldn’t be too much of a challenge. We defeated thou once before and we shall do so again!”

I don’t know if it was the stress of the situation, the heavy atmosphere or the sheer stupidity of the Alicorns, but I immediately started laughing the moment she finished.

Apparently that wasn’t the response they expected from me. Celestia looked baffled as I gripped my sides, trying to contain my laughter.

“Y-You actually think you defeated me? I let you use the Elements of Harmony on me. I let you think you defeated me. It was all part of my plan.”

Not one of the ponies before me knew what to say to that. Celestia and Luna were dumbfounded, the element bearers had dropped their jaws and the royal guard looked baffled.

I decided I had wasted enough time here. Using the distraction to my advantage I cast Arcwind and allowed the wind to circle my body. The action snapped the ponies out of their stupor.

I left them with one final remark. “If you want to actually have a civil conversation, you’ll find me in the Everfree forest. I’d certainly enjoy a chat with the element bearers.”

I waved my arm in front of me, causing the wind to blow dust and debris into their eyes. By the time they could see again I had already vanished.

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