• Published 24th Sep 2015
  • 17,182 Views, 896 Comments

What's Your Story, Morning Glory? - Bucking Nonsense



Morning Glory has succeeded in becoming Princess Luna's personal student. But how did she get there, and where will she go afterwards?

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Station To Station

"Here we go!'

Morning Glory looked at the spot that the young colt was pointing to. It didn't seem to be anything special, just a ring of toadstools, sitting in the middle of a clear field. While it was certainly odd to see them growing in such a perfect circle...

"This is a faerie ring," the colt explained. "There's one near my home, that let me get here so easily. There's one not far from Canterlot, as well. It doesn't work without one of the fair stepping in with you, but I can get you where you need to be, and a whole lot faster than by walking or flying."

Glory's expression was a combination of suspicion and doubt as she asked, "How does this work? Who are 'The Fair'? And just how close will this get me to Canterlot?"

The colt tilted his head slightly to one side as he seemed to ponder that, then answered, "It's a sort of naturally occuring gateway that goes between different places... and different worlds. As for how it works... I have no idea, but it works. Well, it can only work when one of the fair folk is with you... or if one of the fair wants you to go someplace. So... don't step into one of these on your own, or you might end up someplace you don't want to, and with no way of getting back. The fair folk are a community of magical creatures that aren't... native to Equestria. If I try to explain more than that, we'll be here all day, and we don't have that kind of time. And as for how close..."

He held up on hoof and said, "This is the mountain that Canterlot is suspended from." He held up his other hoof, and then placed it a little underneath the first, "This is the closest fairy ring. It's right near the bottom of the mountain, not far from the main road. Once I've taken you to the ring, you'll still have to travel the rest of the way on your own hooves."

The young filly nodded and said, "I can do that. On hoof, it shouldn't take me more than half a day, and I've heard a lot of carts go into Canterlot. I should be able to hitch a ride."

"That's good," the colt said with a nod. He hesitated, then said, "And, um, I hate to say this, but I need to beg a favor from you."

Glory raised an eyebrow, and asked, "What would that be?"

"Don't tell anypony that you saw me," the colt promptly answered. "My parents didn't know I was out here, and if they find out I was out in Equestria, and ended up owing somepony a favor..." He gulped, then said, "Owing a boon is a really, really big thing among the pooka. Especially the two I still owe you. If my dad finds out, he'll get this really stern look on his face, and say, 'Son, I am disappointed' or something like that, and then he'll take me into his study and give me a really dull lecture about responsibility and the rules, and how important they are, and he'll just go on for hours about it, because he knows how much I hate it!"

Truly, a terrible fate beyond all measure...

Glory giggled, and said, "Your secret is safe with me. But, um.... how will I be able to get in touch with you, when I need another 'boon?"

A pooka seemed to be a much bigger thing than Morning Glory had expected it to be. The fact that this young colt had access to a teleportation network that spanned worlds, and spoke of it so lightly, implied that this was the least of the things he could do for her. Why, he could even...

'No, shame on you, Glory,' she thought to herself. 'If you're going to be Luna's student, you're going to earn it, not cheat. 'Magic For Beginners, Chapter Three, Magic is all about rules, both in the casting of spells, and in life. A wizard who tries to cheat, isn't a wizard at all, whether he succeeds or fails.' If you don't make it, then you can consider what else you could use a boon for: Princess Celestia is currently without a student, so there's that option...'

"I'll be around," the colt said with a little chuckle. "You'll probably be busy for a couple of days, but I'll come find you when you've got some free time." The way he said that seemed to imply that he had plenty of free time of his own. Given that he'd had no problem with standing around, staring at a blackberry bush, waiting for one of the berries to drop, implied that he wasn't exactly burdened with things to do...

With that, he grabbed her hoof, tugged her into the ring with him, and then...
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Flash Sentry was not a fool: They don't allow fools into the Equestrian Guard, and they certainly don't assign them to guard princesses. So, when he saw the little filly just disappear, he didn't panic, like some might. Instead, he took in the area where the filly vanished, considered what he knew about the area around Canterlot, and what the filly's goal was...

One thing that pegasai are spectacular at is taking in and memorizing landmarks from the air. It can be easier than one might think, getting lost while airborne, and being able to figure out where one is at via points of reference is a survival trait that can quickly be ingrained into a flier on an almost instinctual level. The few pegasai who don't learn to do so end up being a scare story about how important that skill can be...

And he'd spent quite some time flying around Canterlot during basic training. He knew there was at least one very similar ring of toadstools within a couple of miles of the city.

While he was no Rainbow Dash, Flash was a speedy flier in his own right. As he put some power into his wings, he started making a bee line for Canterlot. He'd find the ring of toadstools, find the filly's hoofprints (Why yes, tracking, recon, and pursuit skills were heavily ingrained into any pony who became a member of the guard, thank you for asking), and make sure she made it to Canterlot. And since Flash was no longer tailing a somewhat slow-moving filly, or having to hide his presence, he could be there in a couple of hours, with the wind at his back...
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"And here we are," the colt said, gesturing towards the mountain looming above them. "Canterlot."

The postcards, the photographs, the paintings that Morning Glory had seen all her life... they did nothing to prepare her for the sheer majesty of the city of Canterlot, seen from below. A massive city, seemingly suspended as much on thin air as it was the massive struts that supported the weight of both the city and the palace. It could only become more spectaculr when she got closer to it...

"If you go north about half a mile, you'll hit the road," the colt explained, "and there tends to be a lot of traffic in the morning and evening, including carts carrying goods. You should be able to catch a ride, no problem."

Smiling at the colt, Glory said, "Thank you. Um..." She paused. Some instinct to her this wasn't a good idea, but she had to ask. "My name is Morning Glory. What's yours?"

The colt paused, then said, "The fair folk don't give out our names. It's a major no-no: A lot of the spells some of our kind use require a true name to work, so we keep them a secret." He paused, then said, "...So, just call me Blackberry. Is that okay?"

Glory nodded and said, "Okay. Thank you, Blackberry."

'Blackberry' smiled, and said, "No, thank you." Then, he quickly shot his head forward, and gave her a quick peck on the cheek. Before Glory could say or do anything, the young colt hopped into the fairy ring, and vanished...

Glory stared at the ring for a few seconds, then pulled open her pack, studied her compass, and then after repacking it, and headed for the road. As she did so, she'd raise up a hoof to her cheek, and rub it. It felt... kind of tingly...