• Published 12th Apr 2016
  • 14,953 Views, 12,558 Comments

Three More Things! - Tatsurou

Uncle Chan tries to balance running an antique shop, fighting demons, and being a Chi Wizard with being a loving Uncle to his nephew, his somewhat removed niece...and three little ponies who drive him straight up the wall.

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The Loyal

Uncle smiled softly as his birthday celebration slowed to a crawl as the sun set. It hadn't been anything big so far. Jade had scrounged in the attic and found one of his old 8-track tapes and a player that still worked, playing some of the music Uncle had loved back when he was still trying to sell 8-tracks before he switched to antiques. Apple Bloom had made up a delicious dinner that the five of them had shared. And then Jackie had arrived, and Sweetie had waved her horn and made the decorations appear.

"Happy Birthday, Uncle!" all five of them cried out happily as they pulled him into a warm embrace. Uncle's smile widened as he returned the embrace. Apple Bloom brought out a rather delicious cake that she guaranteed would not cause issues with his digestion, and after everyone had at least one piece, the presents began.

Jade's gift of a framed memory was happily accepted, with a promise to always treasure it. Sweetie Belle's collage was hung in Uncle's bedroom, where he would always see it. Uncle had chuckled at the rainbow Scootaloo had given him. "It is just bright enough to read by!" he offered happily, setting it over his favorite chair.

Apple Bloom offered her gift of a potion and recipe somewhat sorrowfully. "I still can't get it to do more than regenerate neurons," she mumbled morosely. "It was...supposed to be a youth potion..."

Uncle quickly shushed her. "Apple Bloom, seeing how far you've come with my teachings is gift enough. Regenerating neurons...I have never heard of magic that could do this. I am so proud of you." He pulled her into a warm hug, glad to see that put a smile on her face. "Besides..." he started to say, then shut his mouth. "Never mind." This is a happy occasion, he thought firmly. I won't depress them by saying it won't be too long before I will need that potion.

Once he managed to successfully deflect interest there, he turned to Jackie. "So...what did you bring me?"

"Ta dah!" Jackie offered hopefully as he set down what looked like a gift basket from a Bavarian airport gift shop. The nervous expression that appeared on his face as three fillies and one young girl shot him a glare suggested that was exactly what it was.

Uncle sighed as he started to go through the contents. "Ugh...chocolate stains my teeth! And cheese makes my-" He paused as he remembered the ages of some of the listeners. "Umm...none of your business."

"Uh...oh!" Jackie's expression became more eager as he pulled the Dog Talisman from behind his back. "I brought you one more thing!" He smiled as Uncle took it. "It's your sign."

Uncle sighed softly, pushing himself up from the table. "I will do research now," he offered sadly. "One can't rest when the fate of the world could be at stake."

"But..." Apple Bloom whimpered softly. Sweetie Belle and Scootaloo echoed her expression, ears flat and eyes teary. Jade also sent him a pleading expression.

"I am sorry, girls," he apologized. "This has been...a very happy birthday. But I have seen far too many birthdays, and I fear the best of them are far behind me. Please, feel free to keep celebrating. I..." He took a few calming breaths as he felt the weight on his old bones. "Good night, children."

He closed the door to his library against the disappointment and sorrow of his family. Taking a seat at his desk, he set the Talisman down, removed his glasses, and wiped away the blurry vision that had nothing to do with his glasses needing cleaning. "I'll make it up to you girls...somehow," he whispered his promise.

Hours later, Uncle was hard at work decoding the runes of the Dog Talisman late into the night. He'd heard his family head to their beds, and had sighed sorrowfully over that. However, he'd finally managed to translate the runes somewhat. "The Noble Dog is best friend to man," he translated. "It restores youthful energy to its holder..." He turned it over to examine the etching on the front. "And grants...eternal life." He set the talisman down, tapping it with his pencil eraser. While any other day, the latter would have brought more focus... "Youthful energies..." he murmured softly.

Without warning, the Talisman blazed with light as the magic flowed into Uncle. He felt the years wash away from him as the strength of his youth returned to his body. His face retained its wrinkles, but his limbs firmed as his skin smoothed. His fingers toughened as blood flow increased, and his eyes sparked as he saw clearly without his glasses. He felt decades younger in moments. "Aiyah..." he murmured softly as he clutched the Talisman. "Such...such power. This is what Apple Bloom sought to give me, so we could make memories again..."

He paused as that thought hit him. They wanted so badly to make more memories with him. They'd wanted to give him a happy birthday, but he'd ruined that by being too old to enjoy it. Part of his mind reminded him that magic like this was dangerous. The Talismans were being actively hunted. Every day this one - especially this one - was out of the Vault at Section 13 was another day it was in danger of falling into the wrong hands. He felt safe leaving them at Section 13 partially because of Captain Black's flat refusal to believe in magic. He'd never be tempted by power he didn't believe in.

But the faces of his daughters as he'd been forced to turn his back on the joy they'd tried to share with him... Those three fillies had brought so much joy into his life. They'd given him purpose and drive at a time when both had been running out. Each day with them was a new challenge that kept him vital, his mind sharp. He owed it to them to give them more happy memories in these formative years. He owed them so much more than that. He had turned his back on them, on their offered gift...he could not do so again.

Quickly fashioning a pendant to hold the Talisman, he hung it around his neck under his shirt. "Just a few days," he promised himself. "Just a few days to show them the joy they bring me. A few days of memories to treasure for a life time..."

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