• Published 2nd May 2016
  • 3,563 Views, 208 Comments

Children of the Star - Grey Ghost

Princess Twilight Sparkle finds out who her real father is...and now she and her sister's must find him.

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Fall Of A Star

“What do you think?” Star Dust asked, leading Princess Celestia, his former teacher, into his workshop. Star Dust himself was still around the size of a normal pony, the young alicorn having only ascended the year before.

“It sounds impressive, Dusty,” Celestia chuckled. “Of course, most of your ideas do. It’s a matter of whether or not this one will work. Your last experiment took the cleaning staff quite some time to clean up.”

“I assure you my dear Celly, this one will go off without a hitch!” Star Dust beamed. He was a deep forest green, and both his mane and tail were black with green streaks. His cutie mark was rather unique. It was a dot with one half colored blue and the other red. This dot was surrounded by three rings that had smaller dots that appeared to be orbiting the first.

“37~” Celestia giggled, rolling her eyes.

“What?” he asked, looking up at the taller alicorn.

“Oh, I just like to keep count of certain phrases that I’ve dubbed ‘Dustisms’. That particular one has been said 37 times since I started counting,” Celestia answered, smirking down at the stallion. He glared at her before moving on.

“As we both know, the sun is the well that all life on this world draws from.” They moved into a rather large, dome shaped room. At the center was a small glowing orb, contained under a bubble shield. “And I just made a miniature version of it.”

“Are you sure that's a good idea?” she asked, casting a worried look at the shield. “Something like this could end in catastrophic results with even the slightest miscalculation.”

“I am not so blind as to ignore the danger.” Dust nodded. “That's why we are so far underground. You remember that proposal I sent to you? A way to distribute power throughout the country?”

“I had guessed that this is what you were talking about in said proposal when I saw it,” Celestia nodded, glancing back at it. “I know better than anypony the energy contained within the sun. So, how do you plan on harnessing it?”

“Simple.” He moved toward the bubble, levitating over a strange looking hollow sphere. “This is what I call a ‘dyson sphere’. We place it around the miniature sun and it will absorb its energy and transfer it into the collection matrix I’ve set up. Of course, there is the possibility what we have now won’t be able to store the amount of energy taken, which is why we’re only going to start on the lowest setting possible.” He levitated the dyson sphere into the bubble, carefully setting it around the tiny star.

“I must admit, if this works then I will be very impressed. When this over we should go over the notes on how you created such a thing.” She smiled.

“Of course.” He smiled back, soaking up the praise. “June Bug!” he called over to his assistant. “Could you please get the matrix ready?”

“O-of course sir!” the young mare called out, galloping over to some equipment and flipping a few switches. “Th-the matrix is fully operational, sir! Collection is progressing as you hypothesized it would!”

“Marvelous~” he smiled, flexing his wings a little.

“It’s a good thing we’re in a large room. Otherwise I’d start worrying about there being enough space for your swollen head,” Celestia teased, poking the side of his head.

“Oi, my head is perfectly sized,” he huffed, shaking his head.

“Hmm, I don’t know,” she giggled, narrowing her eyes. “I think it's definitely growing to hold that massive ego you seem to be developing.”

“Oh shut it, thunder thighs,” he shot back.

“Oh, I have thunder thighs do I?” Celestia smirked. “Because I remember a certain colt ogling my backside while I would lecture him on Pre-Equestrian History. And the way he’d cross his legs when I asked him questions.”

“I have no idea what you're talking about.” Star stuck his nose up before they shot wide open. “Something’s wrong. June, how much energy is coming through?”

“I-I don't know!” the mare cried back. “The needle is going haywire!”

“Dammit!” he swore, lighting his horn up to try disconnecting the dyson sphere. He let out a cry, shaking his head. “Too much feedback...”

“Maybe I can help,” Celestia said. “You said that you essentially created a miniature sun, correct? Then perhaps my magic will be of assistance.” She lit up her horn and pointed it at the sphere. “Just direct me on what I should be trying to do here.”

Star took a deep breath, letting it out slowly. “Okay. I need you to contain the energy while we work on cutting the energy flow.” Celestia nodded, closing her eyes and wrapping the mini-sun in her golden magic aura.

“I think I’ll be able to connect my magic to this,” the princess said, her eyes still closed. “It feels much like the real sun.”

“Good.” Star nodded, rushing over to his matrix. He muttered various things to himself. He grabbed the receiving crystals in his magic, letting out a yelp as his magic was rejected. “Oh that is not good. Not good at all...”

“Dusty, I heard that,” Celestia gulped, opening one of her eyes and looking back at him. “Please tell me that there's something we can do about this.”

“June Bug. Listen to me very carefully. I want you to run out of here as fast as you can and evacuate the rest of the staff.” Star didn’t bother to look at her, instead making his way over to Celestia. “The only thing we can hope to do is contain the energy until the star is bled dry.” He adjusted some controls to max with his magic before looking at Celestia. “I guess I’m not as smart as I think I am.”

“Dusty, being reckless and being smart are two very different qualities,” she assured him, her horn brightening to adjust to the new settings. “Haven’t you learned that yet in all the years I’ve taught you?”

“Let’s just keep focused on not letting us all die from solar energy.” He lit his horn once more, joining her magic with his own. He grunted under the strain, taking steady, deep breaths.

“Relax, Dusty,” Celestia coached. “You're thinking like a normal unicorn right now. Remember, you’re an alicorn. Your magic is more potent now than ever before. Just free your mind and connect with your alicorn attribute.”

“That's easy for you to say...” He closed his eyes, taking in a long breath and letting it out slowly. “I’m nowhere near as old as you are, nag.”

“Now is not the time to be bringing up my age,” she pouted. “Though one of the perks of being an alicorn is the eternal youth. Downside however, is that I have to worry about heat season until the end of time.”

“I pray to Faust for the poor soul that catches your eye.” Star chuckled, keeping his breathing calm, pouring most of his concentration into his magic.

“I could say the same for you,” Celestia countered, avoiding looking at him. “Honey, come quick! I’ve just created an experimental crib for the baby. It’ll change them and it plays classical music to develop their mind,” she said in a poor imitation of him.

“Oh, ha ha.” He panted, cracking an eye open. “This... was a terrible idea...”

“No it wasn't,” Celestia gave him a warm smile and draped one of her wings across his back. “It was, like many of your ideas, a good one that fell victim to unforeseen circumstances.”

“With the amount of energy leaking out of this thing... I can only imagine what it's going to do to the environment above...”

“Well then,” she said, eyeing the shifting ball of plasma. “If these might be our last moments together, then I say we share something. Has there been a mare… or stallion that’s caught your eye?”

“I’ve been meaning to ask June out... I just... never took the time...” he sighed, hanging his head slightly.

“Yes, you always did devote your time to your lab work instead of with members of the fairer sex,” Celestia giggled as she reminisced. “If I’m not mistaken, your date to the School for Gifted Unicorns’ dance was a homemade tesla coil.”

“Dancing’s not my thing,” he laughed. “What about you? Anypony catch your eye?”

“Oh, I’ve had a few stallions, a griffon cockerel or two, and even a fling with a minotaur in my time. But, another downside to being an alicorn is that while you stay young, your lovers do not,” she sighed.

“You know... I was hoping to meet that sister of yours... granted, she’d probably try to kill me, but still...” He looked up, letting out a sigh of relief. “Looks like we’re almost in the clear.”

“That's good, and as for Luna, once she is herself again she would enjoy your company.”

“You sound so sure of that.” He slowly lessened his magic, watching as the last embers of the star flicked out and the dyson sphere clattered to the ground.

“That's because the two of you are the ponies I know best in all of the world,” she chuckled, cutting out her own magic and retracting her wing. “I’d think you’d trust my judgement on these matters by now.”

“I probably should...” he panted, brushing a few sweat soaked strands of hair out of his face. “Faust, it’s hot...”

“Try connecting to the actual sun,” Celestia giggled. “Back when I first became an alicorn I would sweat worse than you are right now when I raised and lowered the sun. Now? I could run a marathon in Saddle Arabia while wearing winter clothes and still be dry.”

“Lucky...” he muttered, starting to move toward the exit. “Shall we?”

“Yes, let's go see what the damage is up above,” she nodded, heading out the door. “Hopefully nothing too severe.” They called silently through the empty bunker, finally breaking out into the daylight. All around them were dead plants and trees, as far as the eye could see. “Th-this is awful,” she gasped, running a hoof along a patch of dead grass. That little bit of contact caused the dead blades to break apart, crumbling away.

Star Dust was silent for a few moments before giving Celestia a melancholy look. “I’m not going home... am I?”

“Dusty… I will do what I can but… I don't know if I can persuade the nobles and convince them that nothing like this will ever happen again,” she admitted, meeting his melancholy look with one of her own. “And… if the worst does come to pass and you are exiled, then I promise you that it will not be permanent.”

“We both know the outcome...” He started to walk, making sure to go in the opposite direction of Canterlot.

“Dusty!” Celestia called out, causing him to look back. “I just want you to know… that you're like family to me. And that I will ensure that you come home again,” she told him, tears welling up in her eyes.

He gave her a tearful smile. “I know.” He spread his wings and sprang into the air, quickly and quietly flying off into the distance.