• Published 24th Apr 2015
  • 2,280 Views, 127 Comments

A New Life - Lunafan1k

A changeling survives a traumatic event at the cost of his memories, and his sanity. He makes new pony friends who try to help him, unknowingly making his condition worse.Takes place prior to the changeling invasion.

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Fashionably Late

It was late afternoon by the time I finished my tale, my voice starting to turn hoarse near the end. Through it all they seemed pretty calm, only asking me a few questions here and there, like why I thought roasting marshmallows over a pile of burning corpses was a good idea as well as some other faults in my logic along the way, to which I could only shrug, “Seemed like a fine idea,” was my only response.

Once I got to the City of the Dead, or the Castle of the Royal Pony Sisters, i.e. Old Canterlot, they became incredibly crestfallen as Rose and I explained our sides of the situation, more than a few names catching their attention. When it came to the book after defeating the Lich I allowed them to look it over as well as myself and verify what Rose had said about me being the chosen vessel for the knowledge and power, though I was warned about breaking the laws or something.

“That is a very interesting tale, though we have one question,” Luna said from her spot across from me, “You mentioned a massive being composed of earth was the one responsible for defeating the Lich in the end, what was the cause of such a creature? And how could it simply vanish? Could this being be a threat to Equestria in the future?”

I looked to Rose, “Well, now’s your time to tell them.”

“Tell us what?” Celestia asked.

Rose cleared her throat, “Right, as you know I was one of a few ponies who looked after you and offered tutelage and guidance in your early years. However, at the time you were too young and it was too soon in your studies to inform you. Originally the plan was to wait until you started taking over some royal responsibilities when you came of age, but then the accident happened to his highness and the queen followed soon after.

“There was a lot you both needed to know, and with how crazy everything got politically our hooves were full, and the thought was pushed aside for more urgent matters. That is, until Nightmare Moon claimed poor Luna. By then it was too late, and it was all we could do to simply preserve our knowledge for the future, which unfortunately went undiscovered the last thousand years.”

Celestia looked her over carefully, “Rose? What are you meaning to say?”

She sighed, “Simply put, My sister and I were part of a secret order, established to not only protect the kingdom, but to uncover the secrets of the ancient spirits resting in our world, old gods from long before time and life.” This earned a gasp from the audience. “The ‘being of earth’ was one such ancient. She is the Earthen Mother, the consciousness of all life in the world, divided evenly. She’s in the grass, the trees, and the soil beneath our hooves. She was not happy with the Lich, but took pity on those affected by the wild magic. Our bodies are slowly recovering to full life through her will.”

Celestia and Luna looked to each other for a moment, as though having some sort of secret discussion before looking to us again. “You say the records and teachings all remain intact?” Luna asked.

“Yes, they should be. The preservation spells should still be working and they were sealed in an air tight chamber. They might need to be transcribed before the pages decay but it shouldn’t be an issue.” Rose said.

“In that case I’ve come to a conclusion. I would like you to train my student, Twilight Sparkle, in this Ancient Magic in our place. I will have her send me reports on the issue and learn ourselves second hand, as unfortunately we are both far too busy to learn it full time.” Celestia said, with Luna nodding in agreement.

“I’m sorry Princess, but the order was a secret for good reason, improper use if it falls into the wrong hands can cause overwhelming destruction that not even Discord could have hoped to achieve. That’s why only those of the highest authority are allowed to not only know of it, but practice it.” Rose said.

“Rose, trust me when I say that Twilight will be more than qualified for the information. Her future is set in motion and she will accomplish many great things in the coming years, and she will need everything she can get.” Celestia said.

Rose was pondering for a moment, still unsure. I placed a hoof on her back, “You told me about it, and I’m hardly an authority figure.”

“That’s because your power is similar and I would be able to help you control it, I wasn’t planning on telling you actual summoning techniques or the specifics of the ceremonies.” She responded. I nodded, makes sense.

“Princess, I will have to further speak with the others about this as well as observe Twilight herself. Once we come to an agreement and if Twilight is ready, we will teach her.” Rose said.

“Do you believe Twilight isn’t currently ready for these teachings?” She asked.

“Yes, the mere mention of the magic was enough to infuriate her to the point of needing to establish knowledge dominance over myself. It wasn’t very flattering, and the idea of me knowing, as an earth pony, what she has been studying for years wasn’t good for her ego either.”

“I see… I will discuss this with her when she arrives. Until then, would you like a tour of the castle before dinner?” Celestia asked.

I smiled and nodded, this could be fun, and then food! My stomach rumbled, I realized I haven’t been eating too much. Just wait a bit longer tummy!

“I think that would be lovely, I heard you had moved a few graves as well, might we stop by there?” Rose asked.

Celestia nodded, “I try to visit them myself from time to time, just to re-visit old memories. I think you would appreciate what we’ve done.”

“Alright!” I exclaimed as I jumped up, “To adventure!” I proclaimed.

The others chuckled as I led the way out past the identical magic guards. The tour led us to key points of interest, such as the bathrooms (really fancy!), a place to sleep during our stay (one big bed for the both of us!), and the dining hall (possibly the largest table in existence. Wow!).

Eventually we came outside to stroll through the Canterlot Gardens. It was bright and colorful and little critters darted about from place to place, but stayed clear of us. There was even an elderly pony tending to a bush of roses. He turned to us and tipped his hat with a hearty hello.

I smiled and waved back, causing him to chuckle and return to his work.

“The gardens are just lovely!” Rose exclaimed as we were led deeper into a thicker and darker part of the garden.

“Yes, we try and have as many flowers blooming all year long as we can; it’s one of the main attractions to the castle, as well as the statues along the paths.” Celestia informed.

“Speaking of, I still can’t believe you had the gall to store him out here as well.” Luna said in a scalding tone.

“What?” I asked.

“Nothing to worry about-” Celestia was cut off by Luna.

“You had Discord, sealed in his stone prison, plainly displayed for all to see!” Luna exclaimed. “Then, a simple foal’s argument was enough to set him free!”

“Luna, there had to be more than just that. The seal has been weakening for years but without the Elements there was no way to re-enforce it. It was simply a matter of time, I’m just glad the elements had new bearers by the time it was weak enough for him to break free.”

“Regardless, it was a rather cruel tactic to have him displayed as an ornament.”

“I understand, sister.” Celestia said, bringing the argument to a close.

I looked around us; we were in a completely different section of the park. It felt different to me, but I couldn’t place the feeling.

“I feel weird.” I spoke up.

“I would expect so, this is hallowed ground, and your senses are telling you there are dead within the area.” Rose said. “Be warned, the dead are meant to remain dead. Just because you can bring them to life, they will be bound to you in servitude, and their existence would be seen as an abomination.”

“I don’t think such power would sit right with me anyway. I do not plan on controlling the dead.” I said.

Rose relaxed and pecked me on the lips, “Thank you.”

“This section contains those whose lives were lost in the war with Nightmare, those that were recovered anyway. The royal crypt containing our parents lies ahead…” Celestia said with a faraway look.

Rose walked towards the center of the graveyard and lay down. She spoke quietly, whispering something with her eyes closed in concentration for a moment before she started singing a few long notes. The haunting melody washed over us as it thrummed with unknown power, as it did there was a weight I wasn’t aware of lifted from my heart. Suddenly the graveyard felt different, warm and welcoming instead of dark and cold.

“Wow, what was that?” I asked as she finished.

She looked back to me with a smile, “It was a simple blessing, calming the spirits that linger here.”

“Yes, it does feel rather peaceful, more so than it has in years. Shall we pay mother and father a visit?” Celestia asked Luna.

Luna seemed hesitant, “I… I don’t know… After what I’ve done as the nightmare, would they even want my presence? How can I face them?”

Celestia wrapped a wing around her, “They will always love you, Luna, just as I always will.”

My observations of the princesses were interrupted by Rose, who gestured to me to follow her. We left quietly; taking the path we followed back to the main part of the garden and started walking among the flowers.

“We should give them some space.” Rose said.

“Oh, yeah, you’re probably right. I’m not too good with this stuff.”

“I noticed, it’s alright though, you just need some practice.”

“Thanks.” We walked side by side, strolling through the winding paths of the garden, lost in its beauty. Rose pressed her side against mine, resting her head against mine with a loving smile.

“I could get used to this.” She remarked.

“Yea, this is nice.”

We stopped under a tree full of cherry blossoms and relaxed in the shade together. A gentle breeze rolled over the grass and rustled the branches and along our fur, causing Rose’s mane to flutter around her shoulders as we gazed into each other’s eyes. I smiled and caressed her cheek with my hoof, gently pulling us closer.

“Of all the flowers in this garden, you are the prettiest flower, my Rose.” I said as our lips met. She moaned into my mouth and moved her hoof over my back sensually. She broke the kiss with a giggle, falling back and dragging me down with her.

We lay in the grass, side by side with joyful smiles as Rose caressed my own cheek, “Oh Sigma… How did I get so lucky to find a stallion that actually cares for me?”

I pondered the question, my brow furrowed in thought for a few moments until a kiss broke me out of it. “That was a rhetorical question.” She giggled.

“Oh, well I was going to say because I loved you but if-” I was cut off as she rolled on top of me, kissing me with aggressive passion that I quickly returned in full. My heart fluttered in my chest as we playfully fought for dominance, the time and other thoughts were whisked away to the back of our minds as for the moment, we only thought of each other.

Twilight was riding in the balloon’s basket as Rainbow Dash pulled her through the sky at an easy pace. It was now just after noon and they were finally starting to make headway towards Canterlot, plus one guest.

“Why are you riding with me anyway?” Twilight asked their new friend.

“Because my wings are tired.” She responded.

“You only helped push for like ten minutes!”

“Well excuse me for not needing to fly constantly down in the mines. You can’t sneak around with all that movement; you’ll just attract attention to yourself.”

“Why would you sneak around?”

“How else could we keep track of the monster populations?” She asked.

“So you literally risk your life to sneak into the homes of horrible monsters and count how many there are?” Twilight asked with incredulity.

“Sometimes we even destroy the nests so we don’t get overwhelmed by them.” Faina said matter-of-factly.

“But why? What’s the point?”

“Because otherwise the monsters would overpopulate the lower caves and try moving into the lower mines and hunt my brothers and sisters. We can’t have that happen.”

“What if a monster invades anyway?”

“We have… protection, down there that acts as a means to scare them off. But every now and then one finds some obscure path in, and that’s where my team and I come in. My security team is composed of the top fighters in the clan. We’re able to quickly navigate through the tunnels and confront the threat or threats quickly and efficiently.”

“You mean, scare it off?”

“Um, no. We kill it then carry it up to the main levels for it to be cooked and served with the rest of the food.”

Twilight gawked at her, “You’re carnivorous!?” She shrieked.

Faina rubbed her ears with a grimace, “Duh. What, you think the fangs are just for show?”

Twilight scooched away a bit, “But… The bat ponies just eat fruits; they use their fangs to suck the juices out!”

Faina raised an eyebrow, “Well that sounds dumb.” She sighed, “Do you know what grows in caves? That prefers the dark moist environments and doesn’t need too much dirt to grow?” Twilight shook her head, “Like, mushrooms and cave moss. We grow it to feed the trolls and other monsters we have in captivity and we eat them, and any wild animals that get too close. Now stop acting all freaked out because I have a different diet or I might decide to eat you anyway.” She said with a chuckle.

“That doesn’t make me feel any better.” Twilight pouted.

“So? You’re a grown mare, deal with it.”

“Are you always so…” Twilight trailed off, searching for the right word.

“Nice?” Faina suggested.

“Mean. Cold. Just, saying it right out. Crass! You are being crass.” She said.



“Because I hate ponies that say one thing but mean another, I hate being misled and lied to, and I return the favor by not beating around the rock about things, no matter how bad it might hurt someone’s feelings.”

“But, that doesn’t seem very friendly.” Twilight said with concern. “Do you have a lot of friends back home?”

“Yes? Like, seven or eight that I hang out with a lot. Why?”

“Oh, sorry, it just… I thought that your attitude would push others away.” Twilight looked away, embarrassed.

Faina raised an eyebrow, “This ‘attitude’ is me talking to someone I hardly know, forgive me if I’m not opening my heart to you right off the bat.” Her ear twitched as Rainbow tried not to laugh, “Don’t you dare make a pun!”

“Why? Gonna drive you batty?!” Rainbow half shouted in glee. Twilight giggled a bit as well, while Faina just sighed.

“Are we there yet?” She asked.

Twilight looked over the side of the basket to see Canterlot within sight. “Wow, Rainbow! How did we get here so fast?” Twilight called out.

“We had a nice strong tailwind for a while now, really pushing us along!” She called back.

“Finally!” Twilight said in exasperation. “Set us down by the guard carriages!” She called out to Rainbow who returned a salute in acknowledgement.

Faina was looking over the edge of the basket, gazing down at the city as they passed over, then up to the tall spires of the castle. “Looks like marble and common stone for the architecture…”

“So, how does Canterlot compare to your mountain?” Twilight said curiously.

“Well, our commons area is about the size of the castle and the forges themselves are larger than most of your buildings and the mountain itself is rather short. The view is good though.”

They came to a soft landing and Rainbow tethered the balloon to an anchor point, Twilight used her magic to tie a few more ropes down. The group was approached by a guard in shiny gold armor.

“Gold? Seriously? Please tell me it’s at least an alloy of some kind.” Faina said as she looked him over.

The guard ignored her comment, “Twilight Sparkle, the Princess has requested you to join her upon your arrival. She and the other guests are heading to the dining hall, I will escort you.”

“Thank you sir.” Twilight said cordially.

"Whatever, you guys have fun, I'm going to hang out with the Womderbolts!" Rainbow said excitedly and flew off.

“No seriously, is it at least painted steel?” Faina asked, but her question went unanswered. She grumbled as she followed the others inside.

Rose and I may have gotten a bit carried away in our affections but apparently we weren’t the only ones to do so in the past. We have re-grouped with the princesses and were on the way to the dining hall when a guard approached and snapped to attention.

“Your Highness! A large balloon belonging to Twilight Sparkle is being pulled by Rainbow Dash to the castle, Twilight is in the basket with an unknown pony but they don’t appear to be in danger.” He said.

“Thank you, please send them all to meet us in the dining hall.” Celestia said.

“At once, Your Highness.” He said and trotted off.

“It seems Twilight has finally arrived. Though it is odd she comes by balloon, would the train not have been faster?” Luna pondered aloud.

“Perhaps, dear sister. Perhaps asking her would be best, but for now let us convene in the dining hall to await her arrival.” Celestia said.

We went through a few halls and reached the massive doors that led to the room with the massive table that was surrounded by tall chairs on all sides. There were already a large number of dishes covered with metal domes spaced around and a waiter was wheeling out some more on a trolley.

“Please, everypony, take a seat wherever you please.” Celestia said, walking towards a tall chair with a sun, which was next to a chair with a moon. I ran towards the chair closest to the largest covered item and hopped into a chair, Rose sitting next to me.

“Hungry?” She asked.

I thought it over, “Actually not so much, but that won’t stop me!” I declared.

Rose giggled in response. Shortly after we heard a commotion from outside the doors.

“Come on, let me see it!”

“Let go! Leave them alone you crazy mare!”

“Stop ignoring me! Let me see the armor!”

The door burst open to reveal Twilight struggling to hold a weird mare that was being held at bay by Rainbow from her target, one of the royal guards.

“I just wanna know what it’s made of!!” The mare half sobbed in desperation.

“Just give it up! I thought you were supposed to be a diplomat anyway!?” Rainbow grunted.

The mare struggled a moment longer before freezing stiff and sniffing. “Is that...” She sniffed around a bit more before locking her gaze on us in a predatory glare. No… not us…

“FOOD!” Her sudden outburst startled Twilight, causing her to lose her aura around the mare. She kicked off Rainbow and ran full tilt up to the table, leaping clean over Rose and I to land in the chair opposite us, where she tossed the metal lid off to the side and chowed down like a starved wolf.

It lasted all of three seconds before she stopped once again, gagged, then rolled the food out of her mouth onto the plate and proceeded to cover it carefully with the lid, her body shivering. “… That was terrible.”

“Not a fan of hay products?” Celestia asked from her seat calmly. The mare, dark blue in color with really fluffy ears shivered. “Try the fruit to your right.”

Twilight and Rainbow came in and sat down near the princesses as the mystery mare lifted the lid, revealing a fruit bowl. She grabbed an apple and held it up with a scrutinizing look, “What’s this thing?” She asked.

“That would be an apple, a rather juicy fruit with a number of uses in various products.” Celestia said.

The mare opened her mouth wide, revealing sharp fangs as she took a sizable bite from it. The reaction was instantaneous, “MMMMmmmm! Mof if marifthseth!” She said as she devoured several more apples. She then ‘sampled’ various other fruits and surprisingly didn’t make a huge mess. She swallowed the last of an orange, peel and all, and asked suddenly, “Where’s the mead?”

“And why would you require mead?” Celestia asked.

“Because this is a feast. Why am I the only one eating anyway? Dig in! Half of this stuff is edible, not bad for appetizers.” She said as she chugged a pitcher of apple juice.

“What are you expecting for a main course?” Celestia asked, a pleasant smile on her face as she enjoyed the antics of the strange young mare. Luna herself simply watched in confusion while the others looked appalled.

“A feast this big? Probably a roasted boar.” She began drooling a bit and shivered in delight, “Oh gods, Icy can really cook a mean boar!” She let out a belch and fell back into her chair with a content sigh, having eaten about all the non-hay products.

“I suppose there is no point to continue waiting anymore, please everypony, help yourselves.” She said.

I smiled and stacked some good smelling stuff onto my plate as Rose stuck to various veggies. I started eating as I observed the strange mare. She was wearing a rather thick cloak and her arms were encased in a shiny silver metal. Between bites Celestia continued to ask her questions.

“I suppose you are currently awaiting the bore to arrive?” She asked.

“And the mead, hopefully it’s better than that water they were serving in, uh, Dodge something.”

“You must have quite the tolerance, Dodge City is known to have stronger than usual mead and ale.”

“Yea I guess, I’d say I’m about average compared to my friends.”

“Unfortunately all I have at this moment is some fine wine imported from the gryphon lands to the east. Would you care to try some?”

“Wine? What’s wine?” The mare asked with intrigue.

“Similar to mead and ale, wine is produced from various fruits. My favorite, red wine, is made from black grapes.” Celestia’s horn glowed as she grabbed the bottle from a servant that came out with it as soon as she mentioned it. She poured a large amount into a tall glass and passed it to the mare.

She chuckled as she took the glass, “Magic is sure handy.” She was about to gulp it down but was stopped by Celestia.

“I’m afraid wine is also drunk differently than mead. Observe,” Celestia poured an equal amount for herself, she then inhaled the scent, took a dainty sip, and seemed to savor the wine for a moment before swallowing.

The mare seemed incredibly interested in this technique and soon repeated Celestia. “Mm, my, that is different, really full of flavor!” She repeated it several times, taking bigger sips each time. “And the flavor seems to dull with the more there is as well, interesting.” She took a small sip and savored it. “You really know your stuff!”

Celestia smiled broadly, waiting for the mare to take another sip, “As I should, I am the one of the princesses after all.”

The mare gasped and coughed, red wine draining from her nose as she coughed and sputtered, holding a washcloth to her nose. “UH GAH!!! Oh that stings!” A tear fell from her eye, which turned to the Princess. “You’re the princess!?” She exclaimed, somewhat muffled from the cloth.

Celestia chuckled, “Indeed I am. Now, who might you be, who barged in on our dinner and caused trouble for my guards and student?” She said in the same calm as before. Was I supposed to feel like that was a threat? It felt like a threat. One that went unnoticed by the mare.

She chuckled, embarrassed, “Sorry about that, I’m easily excited, and then food…” She trailed off, drool once more drooping from her mouth until she caught herself. “Sorry, food is my one weakness.”

“I thought you said a good drink was your one weakness?” Twilight asked.

“… One of my few weaknesses.” She amended. “And my name is Grand Faina Night-Steel of the Fang Clan, head of security and Grand Elder in training, Ambassador of the Crystal Mountain Mines. Please forgive my irrational behavior displayed in your presence.” She said, standing with a slight bow.

“Well met, Grand Faina, and you are forgiven. Foreign dignitaries often over-react to new and interesting things, plus your gear is obviously not of Equestrian make or design and a bat pony guard would know who we were, no matter how fresh on the job.” Celestia said.

“Oh that reminds me, what is the guard’s armor actually made of? Is it solid gold or an alloy, and why gold of all metals? That’s just terrible armor no matter how you look at it.” She asked.

“Might I ask why you would think so?” Celestia inquired as she ate.

“I’m no smith, but my blood brother is and we hang out all the time and he’s shown me a bunch of stuff. Gold is good for a few things, decoration and magic conduits. You can fill a carving with gold and it would take the enchantment easily. But it works both ways, it’s incredibly conductive to energy and the one wearing it would feel every bit of the shock, not to mention its physical durability is incredibly soft. I can bite a gold bar in two. Well no I can’t but you could defiantly tell it was bitten.” Faina explained.

“I see. Then worry not, Grand Faina, the armor is an alloy that’s enchanted with the best defensive magic known to Equestria.” Celestia explained. I set my fork down as I finished my plate, Celestia doing the same.

“Aha! I knew it! Can I spar a guard?” She asked with a grin.

“Perhaps another time.” Celestia said with a smile, “But for now I believe we should all head to my study, there is much to discuss.”

“Oh! Right, diplomacy stuff. Lead the way! Save some boar for me, will ya?” She asked the waiter who merely stared at her.

“Sebastian, please prepare a large bass for our new friend, and deliver it to my study.” Celestia said.

“Of course, Your Majesty.” The waiter said with a bow and headed toward the kitchen.

Celestia stood, “Alright everypony, please, follow me.” She said pleasantly.

A sudden thought crossed my mind, causing me to dig through my bags. “Aha! I’m bringing the marshmallows!” I declared and held them on high.

“Ooo are they tasty?!” Faina asked.

“Of course! But we need a fire!” I affirmed.

“On it!” Faina said as she reached for a chair. She was stopped by a golden glow encasing her.

“Perhaps we should discuss a few rules as well.” Celestia said as she floated Faina in front of her up to her study. “There is much to learn…” She muttered.

Well regardless, I’m getting me some more cooked marshmallows!

A strapping young stallion with a coat shining white and a perfectly groomed blond mane walked into the dining hall, only for him to stop aghast at the sight that not only was the feast already eaten, but there was nopony to greet him!

“I, Prince Blueblood, will not let such a travesty go unpunished!” He declared, a plan forming in his mind on how to deal with the one responsible for ruining his dinner.

Author's Note:

Blam! Chapter 12! took a bit longer to finish off than i would have liked as now I have to push back writing the "spicy garden scene" some other time. Next chapter: Exposition and world building with a vengeful Prince Blueblood.

Edit 1/13/136
Added a line to explain Rainbow's absence from the story for the next several chapters