• Published 13th May 2012
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The Everfree Chronicles: The Alchemist - Roran Dreamon

The Everfree Forest, never a safe place for anyone to live in except for one colt, he calls it home.

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Chapter 4: Dungeons and Agony

Canterlot Dungeons

"What are you talking about prisoner?" said the guard, his voice cold as stone.

"Nothing you idiot...just...thinking on our last moments alive...so far it looks pretty boring..." I said, trying to throw him off our scent of our escape plan.

"Mmhmm...well behave yourself...the Princess is going to see you now." he said in his cold tone.

'Oh...buck me to tears...this will suck in the end...wouldn't it?' I thought to myself, my evil side currently retreated to the corner of my mind.

"Is the prisoner awake?" said the princess.

"He is your majesty"

"I will speak to him...and you may leave now, this will be a private conversation..." 'Wait...private? Why does she want the guard to be gone when she is speaking to me? Wait a minute...so this is how I die...I get plastered all over my cell walls...not the best way for me to die.'

"Well...isn't this nice...and to what do I owe the almighty Princess Celestia to my humble little prison cell with no windows or fresh air." I said in sarcasm and venom.

"You do not need to be rude to me Nightshade...I am simply wondering why you are working under Nightmare Moon...the same mare that wants an eternal night all over Equestria." her voice has some strange soothing effect, making me calm down, but when she said that about an eternal night, I snap out of it.

" I am sorry to disappoint you my princess...but my Queen only wants ponies to appreciate her night, like the way I do, and if it was not for her, I would have died alone in the Everfree forest, forever exiled to that place because of a crime I did not commit...and I was not even given a fair trial!" I started to shout, already losing my temper.

Celestia just looks at me, as if I just spat on her hoof in anger. Than just partially closes her eyes and moves closer to me, making me immediately back up into my small hammock.

"Why do you show such anger and malice to me little Nightshade...is it because that you were exiled...or was it because nopony saw that it was an accident instead of a murder...or maybe...that Nightmare Moon has control over your mind...whatever the cause maybe...I will fix it...I promise you, I will help you...just do not give up hope." she said with a voice of that of silk.

I glare at her, my eyes retaining the original amber and red colors, but now having the teal tints to it, and my mane and tail slightly glowing a ghastly black aura.

"I lost everything that I loved and cherished when I was exiled...and you think that your petty words can just...fix it all, make it all go away...no...no no that will not work on me..." I take a step forward, my horn pointed at her in an offensive position.

"You think you can give me back my 5 years that I have lost...you think you can fix a broken friendship with false words...do you really even believe, that Nightmare Moon can be stopped just by you?" my voice now sounding demonic and twisted.

"In Five years time my little Celestia...in 5 years, when the celestial sky aligns with the moon, my Queen will be free, and she will bring forth the beautiful eternal night, and all will bask in her beautiful glow, and you, my sweet little princess will be to powerless to stop her." my voice now starting to blend into my evil side, sounding unholy even alien to myself.

"In Five years, the stars will unlock the gates of the moon, and my precious Queen will be free, the shadows will spread across Equestria and all ponies will see the true night as I have, and the mare in the moon shall become nightmare moon!" I start to cackle insanely, and Celestia slightly winces, remembering where that horrid cackle have come from, none other than Nightmare Moon.

"So...try to stop us...just try to...that is all you can do now...is to plan...and wait..." my voice going back to normal, and my eyes returning to normal along with my mane and tail.

"I am a grim bloody fable...with a grim bloody ending..." I said, looking right into her eyes.

"If you truly think that...than you are lost...lost to that mare's insane twisted words...I am sorry...but you can not be allowed to live...you are her only servant, and her only guard, I will not allow Equestria to be consumed by her...forgive me for what I am about to do." her voice now sound sad and disheartened.

As I keep looking at her, her horn slowly glows a faint green earthly color, and I just keep staring, waiting to make my move.

To what she does not know, I slowly undid my anti-magical hoof cuffs around my hooves, the foolish guards forgot that I had a small sliver of metal, and after 2 hours of unsuccessful lock picking, I finally broke the lock and left them on partially loose.

"Forgive me Nightshade."

"You are forgiven...for now" I said, my voices mixed again as I quickly secure the anti-magical to Celestia's fore hooves, causing her to fall forward with her full weight, causing her to crash down and land hard on the hammock, snapping it in half.

"Like I said...you are forgiven..." I said, laughing insanely again. Just as I step out of my cell, I see the guard that was protecting my cell. Now charging at me, hearing the sounds of Celestia falling over.

"Prisoner Escape! All Guards get in here ack! the guard chokes out as I grab him with my magic and force him to pass out, and with what little time I had, I quickly strip him of his armor and helmet and put it on myself, feeling the weight of it was bad enough, but the armor was to loose, and the helmet did not have a place for my horn.

"Really...couldn't have normal armor that fits for all ponies?" I grumbled. "At least I can change it to fit me...like the way the ghost showed me."

As I quickly shrink and change the armor to my body, I hear the sounds of heavy hooves stomping down the stairwell, coming right at me. And just in time too as I place the armor and helmet onto myself, making me blend in just like the rest of the guards.

"Private! What happened here?" shouted a different guard.

"Sir, this prisoner tried to escape!" I said back, trying to sound older and more professional than I really am.

Just as the guard gives me the quick look down, he motions two other guards to quickly grab the unconscious guard/prisoner as I quickly slip away and half-assly navigate my way out of the dungeons, and soon enough I find my way to the surface, overlooking Canterlot from the palace.

"So...this is Canterlot...well I'll be damned...pretty freaking fancy...but my home is so close...I must get the hell out of dodge..." as I said, two more guards come up.

"Private, report to the guardhouse near the main gate and tell them that prisoner tried to escape and put this place on lock-down until we can tell what happened." he told me in the stone like tone.

"Yes Sir!" I reply, outside I look like a normal guard in golden armor, but on the inside, I am laughing my ass off, not only did I get away with knocking out a guard, but I also manage to immobilize the princess and escape death, three amazing feats in the same day, what is the worse that can happen?

As I trot to the guardhouse, I hear the alarm bells go off, and quickly the guards start pouring out of the barracks and from the tower, all of them apparently going to the dungeons, leaving me behind, this is to easy.

"Okay...just got to leave the palace grounds...make my way out of Canterlot...than just haul ass back to the Everfree...sounds simple enough..."

"Oh really now...

"Oh...you got to be fucking kidding me..." as I slowly turn around, I see a very...very...pissed off Celestia towering over me.

And in that split second, all I see is a pair of large hooves bucking me in the face, catapulting me out of the palace gates, flying over most of Canterlot, and going over the cities edge, and taking a two mile drop.

"I swear if this does not kill me...than I am not going to buck with Celestia ever again..." as I fall face first into the lake at the base of the mountain.

Random Lake near Canterlot, 3 hours later

"Are you sure he is dead? I mean, he took Celestia's hooves to the face...and fell two miles down...but are you sure he is dead dead?" said one of the guards looking for my body near the lake.

"Dude...I am sure he is dead...no pony can survive a fall like that, you can survive a hard bucking to the face, but not that kind of fall...

As the two kept speaking, neither of them heard the sounds of heavy breathing, the two speaking to loudly to even hear their own breathing. The strange figure slowly limping towards the two, wielding one of the guards swords in his muzzle, but the blade is bent all to hell, leaving it extremely blunt.

"Did you miss me boys?" was all that they heard when the blade came down on both of them, leaving both of them down on the ground, groaning in pain as a thick sword started to beat the crap out of the two until both are now withering masses screaming in pain.

"Now...back to the Everfree..." "Now...I am going home."

Everfree Forest, 8 hours later

"Ha ha ha ha....I escaped alive...and took two bastard guards down also...it seems revenge is smiling upon me this lucky evening." I said, my mind now bent and twisted.

"You have escaped my sister's wraith...escaped from prison, and survived a lethal fall...you are ready my friend...come home...and your reward will be waiting." I heard in my head, and I am now thinking what my reward is.

'Please let it be something awesome...maybe an alchemy lab...or maybe something awesome like a new spell book.'

"You are such a nerd...you know that?'

'Shut it...'

As I trot back to the castle, I notice that the creatures of the forest are now avoiding me, even the manticore that tried to kill me last time is now cowering in fear.

'Good...now I can take a stroll everywhere without being bothered...'

Everfree Castle, 2 hours later

"Welcome home Nightshade...you have completed your training as a guard...and now...you will begin your training...as my Shadow Guard, truly a high honor for somepony the likes of you...go to our room...your reward awaits you." her voice filled with its superior authority, and pride.

"But first...you must tell me how did you manage to escape from the Canterlot Dungeons, and also from the small amounts of time I managed to look from your eyes, you were face to face with Celestia...which makes me wonder if you betrayed my location to that sun tyrant." her voice now slowly turning to anger, and which I also knew that if I do not say the correct events, I might just kiss my flank goodbye twice in the same day.

"Well...when I first woke up, I barely managed to get a look around the cell and at myself, which I had noticed I had anti-magic hoof cuffs, and after the two to three hours of waiting in my cell for something to happen, I picked the lock inside of the cuffs, and waited for my moment to escape, when Princess Celestia got to my cell, I knew that I was doomed to die, so I might as well have some fun, so I taunted and messed with her, waiting for my perfect chance to strike. My chance came when she closed her eyes to cast a spell at me, I am not sure what it was, but it was most likely to banish me to the moon or to the sun...but it never happened, I placed my cuffs onto her, and since she was leaning forward the weight caused her to fall over, giving me the chance to run." I quickly say, already shaking in fear because I want to keep living, since that is still fun being alive and not being some sort of zombie pony.

"With my chance to escape, I took out the guard that was watching over my cell, and I stripped him of his armor and helmet, took me a while to enchant it with what you have taught me to make it fit me, hard part was playing the stupid role of those guards, they all bought that I was one of them, and when I finally surfaced from the dungeons, I made my way to the gate that would have let me escape the palace...but their was one problem..." as I said, rubbing my head with both hooves, still feeling the pain of Celestia's hooves on my face.

"You should have told me that Celestia's hooves hurt like hell when she manages to buck you with them...feels like she shattered every bone in my skull...I am still amazed that I managed to survive the two mile free fall from Canterlot into that lake...even more amazed that I didn't go splat into the lake...but when I surfaced, two guards were looking for my body, all they found was a water-soaked false guard looking right at them with a blunt sword, and I proceeded to beat the crap out of them, leaving them to wither in pain, and I made my lonely march back here...so..yea here I am at the end of a completely horrible ordeal..." I said sheepishly

"Such a strong colt you are, escaped from capture, evaded arrest, survived a pair of hooves to the face strong enough to kill most weak ponies, survived a cliff dive, and defeated two simple minded guards her voice now back to its kinder tone. "Your actions would have put that tyrant's guards to shame, and I did not forget what you have gone through, so I have a reward for you upstairs, but first...you must answer me this."

"Were you in Ponyville two days ago, seeing if anything have changed in your five year absence."

"Yes, I went back, and the town partially changed, some new buildings, new ponies, but I went back to share a few words with an old friend of mine, and I also looked around for some new fabric that I could...borrow but instead I didn't manage to grab any fabric wheels, I saw Celestia's guards waiting for me outside, she was also there visiting...I did not last long, she knocked me out and well, you know the rest, placed into prison."

"Good...good, I am still amazed that you escaped capture, but now for my other question..." she keeps looking at me, and I know what she was about to ask next. "While you were in that little village, were you looking at the mares there...and by looking I mean giving them that ogling stare." her voice now slowly getting angry.

"Yes...I did, I couldn't help it, after all I had to act like the other colts in that town, it would have left me sticking out of their like a black rose in a red rose bush." I said weakly, my defense to protect myself already broken.

"I was going to punish you, but it I have something else in mind, and I am sure that you will like this reward that I have for you...so follow me." she said as she rose from the stone throne and slowly made her way to her chambers.

"Hmm...I wonder what it could be..." I said to myself, seemingly on deaf ears to everything else.

As I trot to the room, I notice that the palace is spotless, not even a single piece of dust on anything.

Nightmare Moon's Chamber

I enter the room and Nightmare Moon is on the bed, partially unseen being a spectral version of herself, but also, lying next to the bed, stands a suit full of dark purple armor, looking just like her armor, except, it is smaller, and it has a large black cloak built into it, making it more fearsome and intimidating.

"Your reward...you are now, by the powers invested unto me, I now hereby grant you the title, of Shadow Guard, wear the badge of honor well...but next full moon, your training begins." her voice sounding like a mother talking to her child.

"And also...this is your reward." she said, her tone went down, now sounding like it was when I first met her in the dead of winter in the forest. As she slowly advanced toward me, I slowly back peddle, but my rump hits the wall.

Wait a minute...what is she planning? Is this a prank or something?

As Nightmare Moon stepped moved closer, I just stare back at her, now fearing that this might end in two ways, one in which she controls my body, or the other way...no...she would never do that to me...right? Just as I start to think on what she was going to do, she barely touches me on the left cheek, and even though she is a spectral spirit, I can still feel where her lips were, she gave me a kiss on the cheek, and not only did my face turn red like a beet, I also felt my heart beating faster than somepony playing the bongo drums.

"Enjoy your gift Nightshade, for every full moon, you will be training directly under me, and for the next 5 years, this training will take place, so take care Nightshade, and try not to think to hard on what your other reward is. she says to me in a sultry voice, and an already smug grin on her face, already making me think that she was just doing this to tease me.

"I will enjoy your gift your Majesty, and I will do anything for you, till the day I die, I will serve your will." I said as I bow down to her, even though it was hard to do when I was back against the wall. And the next thoughts that went through my head were these exact thoughts.

'Every Next Full Moon...I will be her Shadow Guard...I am hers...and soon...I take another step forward to retribution.'

Canterlot Library, Present Day

"Hmm...the Mare in the Moon...where have I heard that before?" said a young mare voice, trying to think on who the Mare of the Moon is.