• Published 3rd Oct 2016
  • 2,656 Views, 148 Comments

Flames - Olakaan Peliik

Coming to the ponylands: Not Planned. Being an ambassador for dragon kind: Not Planned. Finding a better place to live where my sister would be safe: Planned.

  • ...

XIV - Toil & Trouble

Niirah was just a ray of sunshine in the morning. Not! I'm sure if I had given her the chance, she'd have bitten my wing off or something. Then again, being tied up all night probably wasn’t a good way to improve anyone’s mood, but still.

I skipped breakfast with King Aspen and Princess Luna. “I would like to see Niirah out of your forests and headed back to the Dragonlands as soon as possible,” I’d told them. Neither of them questioned it but I felt it was a little rude of me. Perhaps I should return soon, with another gift. King Aspen was actually pleased to see the Dragonology book. He had reciprocated with a book on the history of Thicket. I hadn’t had much time to read it, but I did glance over the first chapter a bit and was intrigued by what I read. Exchange of knowledge between our people, even just a book or two, had to start somewhere.

I arranged for Niirah to be let out of her prison and quickly got her out of the Thicket. The flight back to Canterlot with a grumpy dragoness at my side was not as fun as it sounds.

“Are we there yet?” Niirah asked for the tenth time as we passed over a meadow.

I was all I could to not set myself aflame in anger. “Oh, Sweet Spirits! You need to be quiet for a few minutes!” I barked at her. “Canterlot is just ahead, the big city that's hanging off the mountain.”

“I thought it'd be bigger,” she commented with a hiss in her voice.

I rolled my eyes. “Just come on.” I dived toward the wall of the city, flying low enough for the guards on the top to recognize me so they hopefully wouldn’t try to shoot us. Well, maybe they could shoot Niirah, except that she’d probably fry them.

“She's with me!” I called out to make sure they let her over. The Guards below nodded their understanding and allowed us to pass over.

Once we were past the wall I made my way over the businesses and homes to my home, where hopefully Kii would be waiting for me.

I landed in front of my house with Niirah landing behind me. “This is where you live? Wouldn’t a cave, like one farther up the mountain, be better?” she asked skeptically, disdain splashed across her face. Evidently, she thought me soft for living like a pony.

I opened the door and entered. “Not in this case, no.”

Niirah was about to follow when I glared at her. She seemed to hesitate at the look on my face and then it dawned on her. “What, seriously? I still have to do that?” she protested.

“You ARE entering MY home after all,” I said putting weight on my words. Honestly, I was starting to not care about dragon traditions while here in Canterlot, but I wasn’t about to be walked on in my own home.

She huffed and stomped her claws, but eventually gave in. She dropped into a deep bow and swept her wings back in a submissive pose. I raised my wings high and stood tall.

“You may enter,” I stated. Now that the formality had been done with, I went further into the house.

I could hear Nandak shouting out back, her voice mixing with the sound of young laughter. The house was in disarray, blankets and pillows were scattered about, papers and books had been tossed onto the floor, and a pancake had somehow ended up on the ceiling of the kitchen.

I pointed Niirah to the couch. “Sit there for now. I'll be right back.” I heard Niirah hiss at me, but I had other things on my mind.

Opening the glass door to the backyard, I saw that Nandak was running back and forth trying to keep up with Kii, Hex, and a third young pony I didn't recognize.

“Brother!” I called. Nandak stopped and dropped onto his stomach, panting. “Having some issues?” I asked.

“As soon as they woke up. They haven't stopped running in circles,” he replied, breathing heavily.

I looked over at the new friend my sister had made. He was a unicorn colt with a white coat, mane, and tail. In fact, the only thing on him that wasn’t white was his eyes, which were golden yellow. Like Hex, he had no cutie mark.

“Who is the new one?” I asked as the kids continued to chase each other around.

“‘Light’ something,” Nandak panted.

“Hm, perhaps you'd like me to take over?” I asked.

“Please,” Nandak moaned, flopping onto his side.

“Okay, you overdramatic lizard.” I took a breath before speaking. “Kii, could you and your friends come over here please!” I enunciated.

They all turned toward me and fell in line in front of me. “Welcome back Krein!” Kii beamed. “Is there something wrong?”

“Just a little. If you and your friends could go and clean up the house. We have a guest, and we will be expecting more in a few days.”

“Yes, Krein!” Kii and her friends started to run toward the house.

“Now hold on, one more thing.” They stopped and turned toward me. “Who’s your new friend?”

The colt looked like he was about to speak but Hex cut him off. “His name is Light Knight. He just joined our class in school.”

Again, Light Knight looked as though he was gonna speak but Kii interrupted. “Aleazh said he was okay to come in the house, he did the whole ‘formal entry’ thing with her.”

“Well alright then. Just get that mess cleaned.” I said as they hurried off. I looked down at my brother. “Go get some sleep.”

“Thank you.” Nandak picked himself heavily off the ground. He dragged his wings, tail, and claws along the ground as he stumbled inside.

Once I was sure I was alone I touched the mark on my shoulder and whispered “Viing,” into the flame.

Once it grew, once again Viing’s voice came from it. “Yes, Speaker?”

I smiled, knowing full well that he couldn't see me. “Enforcer. You're not gonna believe what I found.”

That evening I was on the floor in front of the fireplace reading the history of Thicket. Kii, Hex, and Light Knight were sitting opposite side of the room from me trying to make sense of Kii’s dragon spell books. Niirah quietly pouted on the couch. I had offered to help her find something to read but she had refused.

I was waiting for Aleazh and Nikta to come back and for Nandak to wake up. This was something I needed to discuss with my family.

Nandak lazily slithered his way down the stairs and sat next to me. “Evening,” he mumbled, barely keeping his eyes open.

“So, where are Nikta and Aleazh?” I asked him.

He spoke as he yawned. “Oh yeah, they are out with some suitors.”

Ha! That's funny. “I appreciate the joke, but seriously where are they? Shouldn't they be home or something by now?”

“They are out with suitors,” Nandak repeated without the yawning.

Wait, was he serious? “Say again?” I asked slowly.

Nandak sat up straighter and gave me an annoyed glare. “They! Are! Out! With! Suitors!” he enunciated making sure I heard him.

I blinked. “I leave for barely a day. And they already got themselves, suitors? Why don't I believe you?”

Nandak rolled onto his side. “Because it sounds crazy. Look, they're both been out on a date. Aleazh with some griffon she met at the Moonlite Diner, and Nikta with some pegasus she bumbled into at the theater.”

“Do you know anything about these two?” I asked.

Nandak grabbed a pillow and put it under his head. “I know that one's a griffon, and one is a pegasus pony.”

“No names?”


I rolled my eyes. “You're a real help, you know that?”

“Glad to be of service,” Nandak mumbled, already starting to fall asleep.

The next morning, Aleazh and Nikta sat on the couch looking guilty. I sat opposite from them waiting for one to talk but they were both silent.

“Well. I'm waiting for one of you to explain,” I said.

“We know,” Nikta said, avoiding eye contact. “But we don't want to.”

Niirah was laughing at me from the kitchen. I shot her an ineffective glare before continuing. “I just want names. After that, you can go. I doubt you wanna be here when Enforcer Viing gets here.”

They exchanged glances. “The griffon’s name is Graham,” Aleazh finally admitted.

“Great. You can go now.” I said gesturing toward the door. Aleazh shot up off the couch and to the door. Nikta tried to do the same, but I stopped her. “Woah, you're not going anywhere till I hear a name. Sit please.”

Nikta sighed in frustration. “Fine! His name is Skyline. Can I go now?”

“Yup.” I stood and went into the kitchen as they bolted out of the house. I looked down at some more letters from the mail.

Niirah looked between me and my leaving sisters. “You do know they don't need you right?”

I looked at her a little confused. “Yeah. They were on their own for just over five years.”

“And now you force them to stay away from their home?” she asked, raising an eyebrow.

These were some venomous questions she was asking. “They can leave if they wish. No dragon holds their lives in their claws but themselves.” I was trying to ignore the sourness in her voice.

“What about Kii? Why do you keep her here against her will?” Niirah pressed.

That hit a nerve. “‘Against her will?!’” I practically roared. “She is barely over five years! And she is learning magic beyond what she would have learned in the Dragonlands! If not for me or my siblings she would have been wyrm food!”

I felt like my scales were about to burst into flame. Niirah actually backed up a little bit, obviously intimidated.

“Don't you dare accuse me of keeping ANY DRAGON here against their will,” I snorted. “As soon as Kii has the skills necessary to survive on her own and to make the choices she wants, I will not stop her from leaving if that is what she wishes. But until that time, I will protect her. Like I have always done.”

Niirah had to take a moment to collect herself before answering. “You are keeping me here against my will.”

“If I recall, you violated the laws of an allied nation, and you were also looking for me, to begin with. So please tell me why it is that you have to stay here for the time being?”

She did not answer. I turned back to the stack of mail in front of me. Niirah decided to go out back and lie down on the grass. To my immense relief, she didn’t come back inside for the rest of the day.

“—and so King Aspen allowed her to go free under the condition she remained with me as she left their lands,” I finished explaining to Viing.

He had arrived with two more of his sisters and a third dragon that was not one of his siblings. He was a light gray and dark gray fire dragon. Not very big, I'd say he'd compare to Luna in height. He was young; I'd say only a year or two older than Spike.

Both of Viing’s siblings were waiting to the side with the young fire dragon. “We will speak with her. See if we can get some answers,” Viing said, standing.

He signaled one of his sisters to follow and they exited out the back, where Niirah was waiting. I watched from the other side of the sliding glass as they argued, discussed, and negotiated. Eventually, Niirah, Viing and his other sister came back inside, all of them looking heavily disgruntled.

“We may have come up with a compromise,” Viing said.

“I'm listening,” I said, bracing myself.

“Niirah will be allowed to stay here in Canterlot on two conditions,” Viing reported. “She goes to pony school while she is here, and stays with you.”

I wasn’t too excited about that last part. Her attitude left much to be desired. “Alright. I can work with that. If my sisters are up for it, she can stay with them. Alezah and Nikta were going to move into an apartment anyway. I'll just inform them to find an apartment with a third room.”

“I will send gems to help pay for her living reattached expenses,” Viing stated.

“Was the part about her looking to be Speaker cross the conversation? Because that position is already taken.”

“We have,” Viing nodded. Her going to pony school was the next thing on her list. And now that that is settled, I need a favor.” Viing added.

Oh, boy. “With?”

“Him.” He pointed a claw at the young dragon, who was picking his nose and eating the boogers. Gross.

“With what?” I asked hesitatingly.

“I've tried everything,” Viing pleaded quietly. “He won't listen to orders. I thought maybe there was something you can do.”

“Me? Really? I can barely get Nandak to listen.” I paused. “Speaking of whom, I actually need you to train him a little bit. Just enough to where he can survive on his own.”

“I'll trade you. I'll train Nandak if you take Ash off my claws,” Viing negotiated.

I thought about it, then sighed. One pain in my tail for another was fair, I guess. “Alright, deal.”

“So where is Nandak?” Viing asked.

“I'll get him,” I sighed, rising.

Ash and Niirah both were following me towards the castle. Viing was well on his way to the Dragonlands, with my brother Nandak on the wing. Niirah followed behind me moodily, her head lowered, while Ash dragged so slowly that I had to pause every block to make sure that he was still behind me and hadn’t wandered off to look at something shiny.

My first plan was to see if Captain Armor could do something with Ash. Then I would speak to Celestia about arranging Niirah’s education.

After clearing the gate and getting to the front lobby I stopped and turned to my two companions. “Niirah. Please stay here while I introduce Ash to the Captain.”

Niirah just sat in a corner grumpily as I lead Ash away. Ash commented loudly on everything that he saw, offering his frank opinions on the decor, on the other ponies, and on the day.

“This place doesn't look very sturdy,” Ash said his neck twisted to see as much as he could to study the ceiling.

“It’s held for this long,” I mumbled.

Ash pointed to me. “You got something on your neck. It’s been there all morning.” I glanced down and he sneered. “Made you look.”

I was seething, I know I was. “Boy, you are gonna learn some respect. And I know just the pony to help you learn.”

“Ha! Wait. Pony?” Ash hesitated.

“Yes, pony,” I replied.

Ash laughed. “Right.”

I soon found myself in the Guard Command wing of the castle. Finding Captain Armor’s office was easy. It was labeled.

I knocked thrice and waited for a response. “Come in!” I heard him call.

I opened the door and stepped inside. He was not alone. Twilight Sparkle was sitting in front of him. “Speaker Krein, what can I do for you?” Captain Armor asked.

“I was hoping you could help with a little discipline problem our Enforcer was having?” I asked.

“What’s the issue?” Shining asked.

“Ash here. Doesn't listen to orders, and has no to none in the regards for respect,” I said showing the dragon behind me, who was giving Shining Armor a sneer.

Shining raised an eyebrow. “What do you want me to do?”

“I don't know, bring him down a peg?” I said, suddenly thinking that I may not have entirely thought this out. Ash was, after all, much taller than Shining Armor.

“If I may interject here?” Twilight said.

Shining suddenly seemed to remember that Twilight was there. “Krein, meet my sister Twilight Sparkle. Twilight, meet Krein.”

“We’ve met before,” I commented.

“Oh good,” Shining nodded.

“Anyway. I have a little spell I used to use on Spike when he misbehaved,” Twilight said with a grin. Her horn sparked and a ribbon of magic flowed out of her horn, wrapping itself around Ash’s wrist.

“What did you do?” Ash protested as he tried to get the band off to no avail.

“Try and breathe some fire,” Twilight said proudly.

Ash tried—deliberately aiming at her—but all that he produced was an exhaling sound. “What?” he asked in shock.

“I removed your fire breath. And dragon strength. Your flying ability is still there though,” Twilight stated.

“But you can't do that!” Ash snarled.

“Yes she can,” I cut him off. “I give her permission. And since you are a part of the Dragonlands Militia you do fall under my command since by position I outrank you.”

Ash was speechless. “I-but…”

“Hey, Captain. There a way to put him through pony training?” I grinned.

Shining Armor grinned back, obviously knowing exactly what I was thinking. “Oh, I can indeed. We'll call this a test of a ‘Guard Exchange Program’ we could start.”

I nodded. “I like the sound of that. Very official sounding.”

“One second.” Armor leaned to the side and looked out the door past Ash and I. “SERGEANT!”

After a moment a Solar House Guard Sergeant walked in. “Yes Captain?” she saluted.

“This is Ash. We are taking him off the Ambassadors claws for a while,” Captain Armor introduced the young dragon. “He is to be put through training. As many times as it takes for him to get it right. His fire breath and dragon strength have been removed. Make sure everypony at the Guard Academy knows it and make sure he gets the toughest Instructor too.”

“Yes Sir!” the sergeant practically cheered as she escorted Ash out.

“But-but Speaker! This is-!” The door shut before Ash could finish. I started laughing, my shoulders shaking up and down.

“You feel any better?” Shining asked once I calmed down.

I sighed. “I wish. I have another issue waiting for me in the castle lobby. Hopefully, she hasn't caused any trouble.”

I had to open my big mouth and tempt fate. “I swear it wasn't my fault,” Niirah said, walking beside me.

“You hit him in the balls so hard, they had to take him to the hospital,” I snapped back.

“I maintain that he kicked himself,” Niirah snarled.

I rolled my eyes. “Yeah. You keep that defense up. Not that anypony or dragon will believe you.”

We were on our way to Canterlot Academy, where everypony in Canterlot goes for higher education, so we could speak to a faculty member about enrolling Niirah. Twilight had recommended the school. Which is why I had to drag a grumpy dragoness halfway across the city.

I was really starting to think that the Spirits hated me for some reason.

“So, do you think this school will have any clubs or something?” she asked.

“Why, you got something in mind?” I asked. Perhaps this was a chance for me to get to know her.

“I have some ideas,” she said, making sure to give me a cold shoulder.

I huffed quietly. Much as I didn’t want to, if I was going to have to deal with her, I had to at least try to reason with her. “Why are you so abrasive? I did nothing to you.”

“You’re a male. Your all bloodthirsty just like wyvern,” she said sourly.

So it's only males she dislikes. Perhaps there was hope after all. “I look forward to proving you wrong,” I declared.

“You won't,” she snarled.

“We will see,” I said, then quickly changed the subject. “So what interests do you have other than being Speaker?”

“I don't see why you should care,” she grunted.

“I'm allowed to be curious.”

She sighed. “If you must know, I like melodies. When I wasn’t reading, I spent my time in the Dragonlands listening to what little music we have.”

“You are a Shadow Dragoness. Sound is part of who you are.”

“I'm also part Frost Dragon. Shouldn’t that mean that I can breathe ice? No, I can't.” she hissed.

Perhaps getting to know her well wasn’t on the table as of yet. Fortunately, we had arrived. “Here we are,” I declared, pausing.

Canterlot Academy. It was right next to Celestia’s School for Gifted Unicorns. There was a third school but I didn't know its name.

We walked inside to behold white and gray tile floors, wooden beams holding up the white ceiling, stone walls that looked as ancient as the city itself, and gray lockers lining the currently empty hallways.

We made our way to the offices close by the entrance. There was a front desk secretary, a blue unicorn with a messy black mane, looking over papers and schedules. He looked up at our arrival and nearly fell out of his chair in shock at the sight of two dragons.

“Excuse me,” I announced. “Where might we enroll an… exchange student.”

“If you talk to one of our counselors they can help with enrollment. Ms. Sunflower is in right now. The door just over there,” the secretary said with a swallow, pointing with a shaking hoof.

“Thank you,” I bowed and turned toward the indicated door.

I knocked three times. “Come in!” I heard a mare sing-song from the other side. I opened the door and stepped inside. The office was small but decorated with vibrant paintings of sunlit fields of flowers and bright floral arrangements. The earth pony mare behind the desk was bright orange, with a yellow mane and green eyes. Her cutie mark was of, well, a sunflower.

“Ms. Sunflower?” I asked. She nodded and smiled, looking as though she had strange dragons walking into her office all the time. “I have a student from the Dragonlands who would like to learn here.”

“Do come in. Sit, sit.” Sunflower instructed. Once we were seated she got out a stack of paperwork.

“So, how much of an education do you have already?” she asked Niirah.

“I can read,” Niirah stated proudly.

“That’s it?” Sunflower asked, raising an eyebrow.

Sunflower waited a moment for Niirah to continue. “Yeah,” Niirah said slowly in a defensive tone. “Why, should I know more?”

Sunflower shifted in her seat and put on a slightly forced smile. “Well. It’s a start.”

Author's Note:

Hey everyone I'm publishing this chapter today on the 15th of June. My birthday. I turn 22. I hope you all enjoy my little gift to you.

I just updated Strider too so you might want to jump on over if you aren't reading that one yet.

Join our Patreon to remove these adverts!
Join our Patreon to remove these adverts!