• Published 23rd Aug 2015
  • 10,619 Views, 1,120 Comments

Fellowship is Magic - Mr-War

Something strange is happening in Twilight's palace. The magic mirror has started acting strangely during a period of intense solar flares, leaving her worried about what complications might occur. The next thing she knows, through a sequence of even

  • ...

The Arrival

The Arrival

Twilight groaned, internally debating whether she wanted to cradle her aching head, or sit up and take stock of the situation.

Cradling her head eventually won out. Followed shortly afterward by opening her eyes, as she pushed herself into a sitting position.

The first thing she noticed, was the fact that it was really dark out. The second thing she noticed, was that she was outside; evident by the feel of hard dirt under her hooves.

"I don't think this is Canterlot High School. They've got cement there by the portal," she said to herself. Not seeing much options being available, she cast an illumination spell, bathing the entire area in a lavender light. This not only allowed her to observe her surroundings, but also find the others.

The good news. All of them were still together, and still alive from what she was seeing.

The bad news. She didn't know what sort of condition they were in, they were in unfamiliar territory, and she was seeing absolutely no sign of anything that resembled the magic mirror.

In simple terms, this was a potentially very, very bad situation.

"Don't panic, Twilight, don't panic. You know yourself well enough to know that if you lose your head, you'll never get out of this," she told herself firmly, doing her very best to keep calm, despite the desire to panic hard. "First thing's first, make sure everypony is alright. Then move from there."

She looked over the others, considering who to check on first. Ultimately she decided that it would be best to check on Spike, since he was closest, and she was still really sore right now.

"Spike... Spike..." she said softly, shaking him slightly on his back. She was rewarded for her efforts when he groaned and slowly opened his eyes.

"Ugh... what happened?" he asked.

Twilight shook her head to signify the lack of understanding, and slightly winced when she concluded that neither her skull, brain, nor horn, appreciated the motion. "I- I don't know. All that I know is that the vortex we went through is gone, and we're not at Canterlot High School. Plus wherever we are, it's apparently night."

"Yeah, I can see that part for myself," he said dryly as he pushed himself up off the ground.

Rainbow Dash was the next to awaken, bolting up suddenly, her eyes shooting open as she looked around her frantically. Finally they settled on Twilight and Spike, and she made her way over to their position, wobbling as she did.

"Where in Celestia's name are we?" she asked.

"I don't really know, the last thing I can remember is the vortex pulling all of us into it. Then everything just sort of... went dark, and we ended here... wherever 'here' is," Twilight replied. She really didn't like to admit that she didn't have a clue about what was going on. But that was really the long and the short of it.

Rainbow Dash said nothing in response to this news, other than a noncommittal grunt, before she wobbled like a drunken mare over to where Fluttershy laid, and gently shook her to try and rouse her.

"Flutters... hey it's time to wake up," she said as she shook her. Much to her relief, Fluttershy slowly opened her eyes in response.

Figuring it would be best to assist, Spike went over to Pinkie, ready to wake her up.

"Pancakes shouldn't do that!"

However he immediately pulled back and fell on his scaly butt, as Pinkie shouted some nonsense he didn't understand, and leaped to her hooves like somepony had just poured ice water down her back.

Sometimes that mare really scared him.

Twilight just shook her head, again regretting the motion, before moving over to Applejack and Rarity, who were currently in a heap with one another. Under different circumstances, she might've just let them lay together and rest. But now wasn't the best of time for such.

"Come on, girls, it's time to get up," she said as she shook Applejack first.

Applejack grunted as she slowly came to. Blinking as her eyes adjusted to lavender light, she looked up at Twilight, and then down at Rarity who was entangled with her. She grunted as she shrugged the unicorn to wake her up as well.

She was rewarded for her efforts by a surprised yelp from Rarity, followed by a hoof being driven into her gut with enough force to topple her over on her back, which brought forth a grunt of pain, and a mix of mumbled Equestrian profanities, as she shot Rarity a dirty look.

Much to her credit, once Rarity realized what was going on, she was displeased at her actions.

"Oh, darling, I'm terribly sorry! I'm afraid I was having a rather horrible nightmare and I just... reacted..."

Applejack just grunted as she sat up and rubbed her belly with her hooves. Despite being a unicorn, Rarity had a pretty good kick to her. She couldn't help but wonder how the fashionista might do if she ever put some effort into apple bucking.

"Is everyone alright?" Twilight asked, now that everyone was both awake, and able to respond. Answers ranged from mumbles to straight answers, but all of them were in the affirmative. That was a bit of good news right now.

"This really doesn't look like a school," Fluttershy commented softly.

"No, it really doesn't. I don't even know where to begin speculation. But I think it's safe to speculate that, barring future evidence to the contrary, the vortex didn't take us to the world the magic mirror was directly connected to. We... we could quite literally be anywhere..." Twilight explained, slowly and uncomfortably, all the while trying to keep from panicking again.

Immediately, and without warning, Pinkie burst into tears.

"I'm sorry!" she wailed.

"Sorry for what, darling?" Rarity asked as she turned her attention to the pink mare.

"I'm the one that sneezed! I'm the one that caused the vortex thingy to form and bring us here! I'm so sorry!" she bawled.

Twilight blinked, and then sighed, before making her way over to Pinkie and hugged her, rubbing her back gently.

"You didn't do anything wrong, Pinkie, I doubt you sneezing made the vortex form," Twilight reassured her. "And even if it did happen like that, you're hardly to blame. Sneezing is hardly a blamable offense," she explained.

"But-" Pinkie tried to object, only to be cut off.

"Butts are for sitting on. You're not to blame, understand?" Twilight asked as she looked Pinkie in the eye. Slowly, Pinkie sniffled and nodded that she understood. "Good," she replied, before letting her friend go. That was one crisis avoided. Now they just needed to figure out where they were going from here.

"This here's a road we're on, right?" Applejack asked, deciding to change the subject to something else.

"It looks that way. And it looks rather well traveled," Twilight replied as she turned her focus to the hard ground underneath their hooves. And a well traveled road meant regular use, which also meant that it was a current trail. That meant wherever they were, this world had at least some form of civilization, as animals didn't utilize wagon wheels.

"So which way do we go?" Spike asked as he looked in both directions.

Twilight pondered for a moment on the question, but then she stopped. While it certainly made sense to consider seeking out civilization, that presented a complication. Should they leave, how would they be found? She had every reason to believe that Princess Celestia would come looking for them if she didn't hear back from them after enough time had passed. She had no reason to doubt that being the case. And if it was, then it was just a matter of time before they were found, and could return home.

Of course there was nothing to say that they couldn't hurry things along on their end...

"Spike. Take a letter."

"Uh... Twilight? I don't have any writing supplies on me. Do you?" he asked her.

No. She didn't. She frowned at this development, not liking being without quill, ink, or parchment. Her feathers could be used to substitute for the quills, but ink and parchment were another matter.

"I'm afraid not," she stated as she shook her head. "I don't really want to go too far from this spot though. If Princess Celestia doesn't receive a letter from us, saying that the mirror's been disabled for the solar flares, she might come and investigate, meaning that she might be able to find us, and bring us back home. All we need to do is try and be patient," she explained.

"But what if the vortex is already closed on the other end? How would the Princess even know to look outside of our world for us?" Rarity asked.

"An' if it is closed, how's Princess Celestia gonna get us home if it opened ta here by accident?" Applejack added.

Twilight didn't even hesitate before responding. "Discord."

"Discord?" the others asked in almost perfect unison.

Twilight nodded. "Do you think that, when he knows Fluttershy is missing, he's going to hesitate for even one minute, before making every effort to try and get his best friend back, safe and sound?" she asked. They had all seen at the Grand Galloping Gala how he could tear through the dimensional boundaries like it was wrapping paper. If he found out that Fluttershy was potentially in danger, he'd make a door, kick it down, and storm his way in like he owned the place.

"So all we gotta do is wait an' see?" Applejack asked.

"Pretty much," Twilight replied, feeling her confidence and certainty returning in light of this development.

For a moment, it was all silent in light of this news. Although that silence was broken by the sound of a twig snapping in the distance, causing Fluttershy to squeak, and hide behind Rainbow Dash.

"Now wha' could that be?" Applejack asked.

"Considering we're in an unfamiliar world... it could be pretty much anything," Twilight replied, "hang on. Let me get some altitude, and see if I can figure it out."

Unfortunately that's not exactly what happened. Instead of lifting off the ground with wing flaps guided by experience, Twilight screamed in pain and nearly fell to the ground with a violent twinge on her face.

"Darling, what's the matter?" Rarity asked as she approached, worried about what her friend was experiencing.

"I... I don't know. I tried to flap my wings, but they don't want to move. It hurts too much," Twilight stated as she cringed.

"Oh dear," Fluttershy mumbled. She could feel her care instincts taking over fear, and motivating her to make her way over to where Twilight stood to examine her wings, probing them gently with her hooves, and noting the responses she got. "I'm not an expert on ponies, but I think you suffered a pinched nerve somewhere in your back."

"Not good," Rainbow Dash commented at hearing this. Being an athlete, she had experience with things like pinched nerves at times, and it was never pretty.

"It's about to get a whole lot worse! Look!" Pinkie stated and pointed in the distance, as two glowing spheres were approaching them.

"W-what're we gonna do?" Spike asked nervously, his mind being filled with horrible, nightmarish possibilities at the sight of them. They looked like eyes made out of pure fire.

"Ah reckon we're gettin' a might worked up over nothin'," Applejack commented as she squinted. "Those are two lanterns that're comin' this way," she stated.

"Oh good then," Twilight replied as she relaxed. Lanterns meant signs of civilization, as only an intelligent species could construct, and make use of them. And slowly, the sounds of hoof beats, and wagon wheels could be heard approaching their position. "Looks like we're about to have company."

The hour was still quite early, being before dawn. But for the wizard known as Gandalf the Grey, that was minor to him as he rode along contentedly, allowing the rhythmic hoof beats to serve as an impromptu tempo to his thoughts. It had been a long time since he'd last seen Bilbo Baggins, or even visited the Shire for that matter. And tonight, it was going to be a grand celebration indeed.

The lanterns on the cart rattled as a bump was hit, swaying with the motion, but remains attached nonetheless, helping to illuminate his path.

Right now, however, there was another matter serving as illumination, and distracting him from his thoughts. It was a lavender light, whatever it was, out in the distance, and easily visible from a mile away in the darkness of the pre-dawn morning.

It was only once he got closer, however, that he could actually see any details within the light. And right now those details were pointing to six... horses? No. They were too small to be horses. Ponies would be more appropriate. Six ponies and one... was that a dragon with them? It certainly looked like a dragon from what he could see, but never had he seen one so small before.

As he got even closer, he could see something else that was off. Despite the lavender light affecting the coloring of the surrounding territory, he could tell that these ponies didn't have the traditional, natural coloring equines were known for. He could safely say that never before had he seen a more colorful bunch of ponies in his entire life.

Closer even still, and he began to make out certain features. Brand marks on their flanks that he didn't recognize. But standing out the most were how some had horns, others had wings, and one had both. One of them even wore a hat for some reason.

Slowing the cart, he came to a stop as the ponies and dragon took note of his presence, as he had no desire to spook them. And as he slowed to a stop, the one with both wings and a horn slowly began approaching him, the others remaining behind for whatever reasons motivated them.

The pony that approached him then started neighing softly, its mouth moving as if it were trying to communicate. But with it continually looking between him, and the horse pulling his cart, he wasn't sure what to make of it. He knew the Mearas were quite intelligent; far more intelligent than any other breed of horse. But he highly doubted that they would actually believe that they could communicate with man in the same spoken tongue. Whether this pony was a descendant of Felaróf was a question for which he had no answer.

"I'm afraid I can't understand you, little one," Gandalf stated softly. Experience with Gwaihir aside, he had no true manner of communicating with animals, beyond those of any other man.

Whether or not this fact was understood by the pony, he didn't know. All he knew was what he saw; that being a random stick being levitated off the ground, one end being wrapped in a lavender glow that matched that coming from the pony's horn.

Magic. An animal that could work magic like a trained wizard. This day was proving to be full of surprises. Surprises that just grew, as the combination of light from his wagon, and the pony's horn, allowed him to observe the equine actually using the stick to scratch something into the ground.

He observed as the scratches in the beaten path took form, slowly coming together to form a picture. From this angle it looked almost like a... a picture of a lantern.

Another series of scratches followed below it. These, he had no idea what they were. But if he were to hazard a guess, he'd say they were supposed to be letters.

The pony looked back up at him from its work on the road, and then used the stick to gesture to one of the lanterns, before giving a soft, short neigh. Perhaps it was trying to start a conversation?

Another gesture. Another neigh he had no chance of understanding.

"Lantern," he replied.

Another gesture. Another neigh.

"Lantern," he repeated, slower this time.

Another gesture. Another neigh.

"Lantern," he repeated, slower still.


Another neigh. But this time it sounded different than before.

"Llll... l-l-laaaa..."

Another neigh that sounded strangulated, even more than before. This was growing more interesting by the minute.

"L-l-l... l-l-lan... lan... tern..."

Were his ears playing tricks on him? Or had the pony actually spoken a word of man?

"L-l-lan... tern..."

A second utterance. His ears were working just fine, apparently.

"Lan-tern!" the pony stated, more forcefully than the last time. It almost sounded like it was speaking with confidence.

"Lantern," he replied, chuckling a bit at the pony's perceived exuberance.

"Lantern!" the pony repeated.

Perhaps this pony really was one of Felaróf's descendants after all.

"So... what exactly are they doin' over there?" Applejack asked as she and the others simply watched what was transpiring. Whoever -and whatever- Twilight was talking to, had climbed down off of the cart, and sat on the ground as she had, each of them taking turns scratching things into the dirt with sticks.

Twilight was spouting off all manner of random words with no context as to what was being said, and drawing things on the ground. Then the stranger would say something in a language they didn't understand, and Twilight would try and do the same thing.

This had been going on for nearly 20 minutes, and still wasn't making much sense.

"I think she's trying to learn the language," Rainbow Dash spoke up. Spike and the others all turned to look at her for clarification. "Daring Do did the same thing in "Quest for the Emerald Hoof" when she got stranded in a remote village. She had to learn the native's language, one word at a time," she explained.

"But didn't that take her months to do?" Pinkie asked as she tilted her head. She really didn't like the sound of that one bit.

"Yeah. It did," Rainbow Dash replied and nodded as she recalled the details. She didn't know how Daring Do had the patience to do something like that, but apparently she did. "I'm not seeing much other option though. There's no telling how long it might take Princess Celestia to find us."

For a while, they simply remained silent, and observed as Twilight went about trying to get a grasp of the language of this world, doing their best not to disturb her focus.

Unfortunately that left them waiting, and waiting.

"Bored..." Rainbow Dash groaned as she rolled over onto her back, unsatisfied with how things had been proceeding. She stopped paying attention who knew how long ago, as it was too hard to stay focused. "It's starting to get light out, too..."

"I just thought of something," Spike spoke up, bringing the others out of whatever they'd been distracting themselves with. "Fluttershy? Do you think you can talk to the one pulling the cart? It's basically just another pony, right?" he asked.

"Oh. I don't really know. Twilight tried talking to him, but he didn't show any signs of understanding what she said. Maybe the equines of this world speak a different language as well," Fluttershy replied. She didn't want to admit to it, but she felt intimidated just looking over at him. Whoever he was, he was as tall as Princess Celestia, and the Saddle Arabians. Even just approaching felt daunting to try and consider.


There was a sudden, excited yell from Twilight that caused them all to jump in surprise and look in her direction. And just as suddenly was a sharp, warm tingling to each of their heads, bringing about an intense, but incredibly short-lived headache, that passed just as easily as it had come, with no explanation whatsoever.

"Ugh. What happened?" Rainbow Dash asked.

"That was even worse than brain freeze," Pinkie stated as she rubbed her head.

"Girls!" Twilight called as she approached them at a quick canter pace, the bipedal stranger following behind at their own pace.

"Darling, what's going on?" Rarity asked, her head still feeling a bit tender from the sudden pain she'd been subjected to. "What has gotten you yelling?"

"A significant breakthrough. After a lot of trial and error, and a fair bit of experimentation, I think that I've finally gotten a grasp of how the language of this world works. I've already mapped out about 100 different words, so I have a very good idea of the phonetics involved, and how to translate between our two languages," Twilight explained, beaming with excitement.

"Now that's mighty impressive, sugarcube," Applejack commented, impressed by her friend's accomplishment. She'd been trying to pay attention as the two conversed, but most of what the tall stranger had said, had sounded like pure gibberish to her, and she was easily lost.

"Your friend is quite resourceful in her endeavors."

All eyes were suddenly on the stranger at the words spoken. Or rather the spoken words that were understood to all of them.

"Twilight, I thought you said you were trying to learn the language, not the other way around," Spike commented.

"Oh, but she did indeed, little one," the stranger replied calmly. "Had I not been present to witness the learning process for myself, I would have trouble believing it as well, even with all that I have seen in my life."

"Alright, egghead, start explaining," Rainbow Dash stated, annoyed at the lack of answers being supplied. "If you learned the language, not the other way around, how can we understand each other?" she asked.

"Well you see, it's like this..." Twilight started.

What immediately followed was an extensive explanation pertaining to how she had selected as many varying words as she could, accompanied by crudely drawn pictorial representations etched into the dirt to add context to the words, and comparisons between their respective alphabets, that enabled her to grasp the phonetic differences between the two languages, in order to gain an understanding of what was being said.

Needless to say, it went over most of their heads, as there were far too many magical mechanics to be understood. Even Pinkie, who had understood Twilight's explanation of how she used Sunset Shimmer's journal to get the magic mirror working, was hopelessly incapable of understanding this one; a fact perfectly illustrated by her eyes spinning like pinwheels at certain points.

"... And once I had all that figured out, it was simply a matter of modifying one of the translation spells of our world, to take into account the language of this world, and properly apply it to ourselves," she finished. "If it weren't for being an alicorn, it would've been quite an undertaking, and I'm not sure that I could've done it."

"Remind me never to ask again," Rainbow Dash mumbled as she rubbed her head.

"So wha' yer sayin' is we're speaking this here fella's language rather than our own?" Applejack asked.

"As much of it as I've been able to translate so far," Twilight replied. She was sure there were a lot more phonetics that hadn't yet been uncovered, but for the time being, it was the best she could do. "Anyway, girls, this gentleman is Gandalf the Grey. Gandalf, these are my friends. Applejack, Rarity, Pinkie Pie, Rainbow Dash, Fluttershy, and Spike," she said, introducing each one of them in turn, and gesturing with a hoof as she spoke their names.

"Howdy," Applejack replied as she tipped her hat in greeting.

"Are there any Gandalfs of other colors?" Rainbow Dash asked.

At hearing that Gandalf let out a chuckle. It wasn't the polite sort of chuckle one gave when faking amusement at poor humor. Rather it was the deep, rich chuckling that one gave when they were truly amused by something that one had said.

"There are quite certainly other wizards of differing colors. But I am the only Gandalf that I have ever come across in all my journeys," he replied.

"Wait, you're a wizard? You mean he knows magic?" Spike asked.

Twilight nodded. "I could sense something when we first met, although it took me a while to figure out what it was. The magic of this world has a different feel from the magic back home," she explained.

"I say, that's quite a stroke of luck, to come across not only a wizard, but apparently one who would have knowledge of foreign magic. Perhaps that means this, er, gentleman as you said, could help us return home?" Rarity asked hopefully.

"Oh. About that, I... haven't really asked yet..." Twilight replied sheepishly. She'd been so caught up in figuring out how to work out a method of communication between them, she'd foregone everything else. she then directed her attention to where Gandalf stood. "Do you know how we might be able to get back home?"

"That... is a fairly difficult question to answer as is," Gandalf replied. There was too much left to speculation for him to say yes or no just yet. "Tell me, from which part of Middle Earth do you seven hail from?" he asked.

"Middle Earth?" Twilight asked and blinked. She'd have to ask more about that later, otherwise she'd risk getting distracted in learning more about their surroundings. "We're really not from around here at all. We... as best as I can tell, we come from a different dimension of sorts," she stated, before giving a fairly details recollection of what had brought them all to this world they found themselves in, ranging from the letter, to the solar flares, to the mirror activating on its own, and finally waking up in the middle of the road.

Gandalf listened as the tale unfolded, patiently, and intently. He would admit that it was certainly a fantastic tale; one worthy of being a book in itself.

"I fear that what you speak of, is far beyond my realm of knowledge," he replied. Despite the lot of them being ponies, he could still pick up on the glum state the were in at his words. "However, that isn't to say that such knowledge does not exist in this world. There is a wizard in my order, head of the White Council, by the name of Saruman. He is the eldest, and wisest of us all. If such magic exists, he is likely to possess it," he explained.

"Then... then there's still hope that we can return home, without having to wait to be rescued," Twilight stated, her wings fluttering in excitement. Or at least they would have if the pain in her right wing didn't flare up anew, causing her to wince at even the slight movement. That pinched nerve apparently hadn't cleared up with the passage of time. She'd have to ask Rainbow Dash what she did when this came up with her.

"There's always hope, young one," Gandalf replied, "but if you would excuse an old man, I've been traveling for a fair while, and I still have a fair bit of journey ahead of me. I'm on my way to visit an old friend of mine, for it's his birthday today. Much as I'm willing to help you however I can, it will simply have to wait. There are a great deal of festivities to be had on this day. You're all quite welcome to join if you'd like," he offered.

"Festivities? Ooh, a party!" Pinkie yelled excitedly, before turning to Twilight with a speed unmatched by anything short of teleportation. "Can we go too, Twilight? Huh? Can we? Pretty please!?" she pleaded.

Twilight wasn't sure how to respond to the sudden request. Looking at the rest of her friends, she really didn't see much certainty with them either. One way or another, they were going to need to wait for outside assistance to come to their aid. Even if she still possessed residual magic from holding all of the alicorn magic in Equestria, she still couldn't tear open the dimensional doorways that lead back home. That was one thing that, sadly, Starswirl the Bearded had neglected to note.

"I don't see the harm that would come from it. I'll just make sure to leave a note for Princess Celestia, telling her where we'll be headed. That way if she finds us before Gandalf can inquire about any spells relating to dimensional travel, she'll know where she can find us," she explained.

"The party's gonna need more cake..." Rainbow Dash muttered under her breath.

Twilight shot an annoyed glare at Rainbow Dash over that remark. But she decided to let it go for now. There were more important things to worry about.

"It looks like we'll be accepting that offer after all," she replied as she turned back to face Gandalf.

"Wonderful," Gandalf replied, before waving his hand to extinguish the lanterns on the cart. "Perhaps on the way there, you could tell me more of this "Equestria" from where you hail from? It would help pass the time of the journey."

Author's Note:

Another chapter published! I'm on a roll! :pinkiehappy:

Now the reason I put in the Dark and Gore tags is because: for the Dark tag there will be dark themes in this story, like the Mines of Moria. And for the Gore tag there will be NO BLOOD, but there will be a scene or two with decapitation, like when Aragorn decapitated Lurtz.

What will the Mane Six and Spike do in the Shire? Find out next time on chapter 3! :trixieshiftright: