• Published 28th Apr 2016
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Rocky Mountain Dragon - Iron_Cauldron



Changing species and genders was the easy part. Surviving in a world without people and infrastructure, that's going to be a challenge. Luckily, I've had some help to prepare for the long haul. A VERY, long haul.

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Chapter 9 - Spells and Preparations

Author's Note:

I normally save these until the end of the chapter, but this chapter requires a special introduction.

Starscribe was gracious enough to allow me to write this, the bulk of the material coming from, until this chapter, unreleased material from them. I merely padded the material out, put in some characters and dialogue, got final approval to ensure that everything was good, and fell well within the canonicity of the original story. This just about ends the first 'arc' of my story in Equestria, but there will be more!!

I do hope you all enjoy the chapter, and have patience, the next chapter, unless more inspiration hits, will be on Earth, dealing with my character. Enjoy, and thank you StarScribe.

- Three Months to The Event -

Star had moved back to her apartment in the last few months, leaving the dorm since the most intense parts of the training were over. From here on, it would be maintaining use of English, continued reading of new reports regarding the human world, meetings with her team, and more waiting for her chance and time to go to Earth. She had not yet heard of any departure itineraries, or where and what she and her team would be doing

They had been told to seek out leaders from the human world, or those who seemed like they might be leadership material to send to Equestria. She knew what she wanted to do, but like any employee, she knew she had to do what the bosses wanted.

Star also had another reason to be back in her apartment. She had recieved a suprise visit from her distant cousin Starry Night. The two hadn't been on the best of terms since just before the Starry's parents moved to Los Pegasus before they were to go to secondary school, but slowly came around to each other in the wake of the discovery of the coming Advent.

Despite the best herbal tea her cousin's salary could afford, Starry still seemed nervous about what they were being asked to do.

"You ready for tomorrow, Starry?"

"Tartarus no!! I'm so nervous, I don't think I'll be able to sleep until after it's done!" She said, giggling nervously.

"Don't worry!" Star laughed. "From what I've heard, each city, and each tribe, will have a different part in the spell, but it's going to take so many of us to do it. Ponies from across Equestria, the Crystal Empire and beyond. I think I read that there will be circles for all the different tribes and species that are participating, so everyone can contribute." Star said, with a grin. "We'll be fine! Tell you what, tell me if there's anything you like about the humans."

Calming somewhat and gathering her thoughts, Starry spoke, "Well, from what I've seen, and I've tried to watch and read everything I can about them, I think they're one of the most industrious species I've ever seen." She looked to the ground in thought for a moment, "There's so much of everything in their world."

"I know!" Star beamed, leaning to Starry, "I just can't wait to meet them! I want to learn to operate their 'cars,' see their flying machines, and just see their world!"

Starry looked to Star with a raised eyebrow, "You're qualified to go?" At Star's eager nod, she frowned slightly, "I applied for, and tried the qualifiers, but I didn't pass. Well, just barely, but I still didn't pass."

"Don't worry, I didn't pass with flying colors, but I've worked my butt off to get where I am." Star tried to consol, putting a hoof to Starry's withers. "I'm going to try and help the new ponies adjust to their new forms, and help guide them to a new era. Even those who aren't going, are helping. There'll be millions of beings all over the world, all willing who'll be out to help cast the spell that will help the humans."

"Yeah. Still makes me sad that I won't be going." Starry said, looking more and more depressed.

"Hey, don't get so down! You'll get to read all about Earth from what we bring back during the time we're there. We've all been instructed to keep journals about what the Earth is really like, the ponies, and what all other beings the humans become, will be like." Star said, with a far off look.

"Ookay, I'm going to do some reading until bed." Turning slightly from Star, she lit her horn, and pulled a rather large book from her travel case.

"Whoa," Star marveled, "that's a big book. What do you do exactly again?"

"I'm a history teacher in the Crystal Empire."

"Sorry. My little brother, if you remember him well, decided to specialize in pre-Equestrian history, and has an assistant professorship at Canterlot U. What area are you specialized in?" Star asked.

Starry turned the book's cover to Star, "'Equestria Since the Sister's War, Part 1, Volume 2.' It's a book on the study of Equestria since the conflict with Nightmare Moon. I teach the crystal ponies Modern Equestrian History, focusing on the early centuries."

"Wow." Star marveled, definately impressed. "I study ancient magic."

"I gathered that, from the books on your bookshelf over in the corner, and the journals and papers stacked on the front table. Before you hastily moved them, which reminded me of bumbling professors or grad students in some of my favorite novels." Starry said giggling quietly into her hoof.

Starry placed her book on the low table in front of the sofa, before climbing off to sit in front of it. Star meanwhile, climbed down too, and made for her room, "I'm going to do some reading too. Good night Starry!!"

"Night."

*-*-*-*-*-*

Waking before the sun rose, was something neither mare seemed to be used to. Star herself always awoke just after Princess Celestia pulled the sun above the horizon, while Starry, after some prompting and pushing, revealed, over a second cup of black coffee, that she tended to wake later than most, but was almost never late, because of her own apartment's close proximity to the school she taught at. Being a night owl though, often meant very late nights the mare had had decades to become acoustomed to.

After cleaning up, the mares went to the designated meeting place for all participants in the spell.

On her way in, in the center of the massive open space, was the giant, and very intricate, rune circle where the unicorns were gathered, encircled a distance away, by other equally intricate rune circles, not quite as large, but still substantial, where other tribes were gathered. Star parted from Starry, and headed over to one of the earth ponies.

"What happened to all the plants?"

Finally noticing the cleared grounds, already growing crowded, was a smattering of earth ponies checking the unpaved land. One stallion, interrupted from his work, looked at Star, "We've moved the plants and trees to make room for those who're going to be here for the spell today. It's also a chance to examine them and their roots to make sure they're doing okay." He said, grinning. "Don't work too hard."

After he walked away, she shrugged, muttered an 'okay,' and headed off to find where she'd be needed. before noticing something hovering in the air above the crowd.

*-*-*-*-*-*

"All right mares and gentlecolts, if I could have your attention please." A unicorn stallion called out, using a voice enhancement spell. "We're close to beginning the spell, so I need your attention." Once most of the gathered tribes turned to look at him, he continued, "As most have probably noticed, there is a rather large crystal floating above us." the stallion said, pointing to the crystal floating only meters above.

"Because Canterlot has one of the largest settlements of beings in Equestria, as well as it's magical capital, we've been given four, made by the Princesses, with the help of the Crystal Empire ponies, in selecting them from an underground cavern. The other set is in a second large park a short distance from here.

"Every town has a second or secondary pair of crystals, the secondaries serving as back ups. These crystals serve to gather and direct our contributions from each city, to the Crystal Empire. I won't lie to any of you, and this comes from the princesses: even this small part of the spell will require all the magic you can give, without hurting yourselves. I hope you all know your limits, and when to stop. There's no shame in pulling away and stopping, to save your life."

The stallion stopped speaking for a few moments, the light of magic on his horn going out while he spoke to a collegue who had come to the platform.

Turning back to them, "We're expecting the signal from the princesses to come shortly, so please, prepare yourselves. You have a few moments to use the restroom, or grab a small bite to eat, courtesy of the local food shops, or if you feel you're okay, just wait for the signal. Each tribe has your own marked rune circle, or circles, so please stay near them as much as possible, to be ready when the signal is sent."

'Wow, that's a lot to take in all at once, and really, not what I was expecting at all.' Star thought to herself. She made her way over to a table that had a dozen spouts where ponies could get cups of water, just down from where a table had a large assortement of fruits, some veggies, and local pastries.

As she was turning, she bumped into a sky blue coated, orange and off-yellow maned unicorn. "I'm sorry, pardon me."

"It's quite alright." The mare said, smiling.

Scanning the crowd once more, she spotted Grey Skies among a gathering of pegasi a dozen meters away, who smiled and waved when he saw her. Smiling and waving back, she made her way back to the other unicorns.

*-*-*-*-*-*

It wasn't for another half hour that Star or anypony else heard anything, before a siren sounded off, startling everyone, followed by the same stallion increasing the volume further of his voice.

"If all participants would please move to your respective rune circles, we're now expecting the signal in the next few mintues. Also, any within range of my voice, please do not look directly at the stones, once the magic begins filling them up. Doing so will be almost equivilant to staring into Her Magesty's sun, and is very bad for your eyes. To all assembled here today, we're expecting the signal to come at any moment, so please, prepare yourselves."

*-*-*-*-*-*

All across Equestria, sirens began going off simultaneously. All tribes of beings all across the world took their places in the rune circles that the Equestrian ponies had been sent months before to prepare, all anticipating the coming signal. The Crystal Empire was a different story altogether. Because all the magic from across the world would be siphoned there, all the crystals in one place, there would be so much magic circulating, that only the princesses and Discord could be in the castle center with the main magic focus.

Word had gotten out, mostly from those transporting it, that what they had heard called the 'Pivotal Geodesic,' was something not actually made of crystal, but of elements from the core of Princess Celestia's sun, and titanium bands woven around and into it from Princess Luna's moon. Princess Cadence's Crystal Empire also supplied special crystals integrated into the giant, multifaceted artifact.

Those involved in its manufacture knew that there was another 'ingredient' in the giant magical device: Discord's own 'morodite.' What the black as pitch metal actually was, was unknown, but it was so dangerous, that once it was put in in the end, it had to be moved only by the princesses themselves, and kept in absolute quarantine from then on. They were warned, that touching it would kill any non-immortal immediately.

The whole empire was evacuated, because of the sheer amount of magic that would be concentrated in one area. Within the castle itself, the princesses were at the center, ringed dozens of meters out were the highest ranked mages across Equestria, all there to steady the crystals upon their arrival to the Empire.

Far above the Crystal Castle, there was a horizontal portal, through which the Earth could be seen. While the other princesses were all looking up at the portal from one side of the castle, and Discord lounged on top of the rotating Geodesic, Princess Celestia made her way over to one of the groups of mages standing just outside a circle, conversing with the other mages around him.

"Is everyone prepared, Sunburst?"

Turning, he bowed to her, along with the others, "As we'll ever be, your highness."

"Good, we'll be sending our signals out as soon as I get back. Prepare yourself. This is the most magic even we've had to deal with at one time." After his bow and her return nod, she turned back to her fellow princesses.

The princesses together, returned to the Geodesic, and took their places around it, while Discord slipped off, before hovering over to his own spot. Nodding to Luna, Celestia looked to her brilliant charge, while her sister closed her eyes, and concentrated on her moon and stars, each causing their respective stellar bodies to flicker, telling the world's unicorns to begin their spells.

*-*-*-*-*-*

All at once, all throughout Equestria, the most melodious songs began. Every tribe and race across Equestria that was willing, all sang in, or touching special rune circles made to gather all the energy they could spare, in the effort to help. Equestria, Griffonhelm, some in the Dragon Lands at the request of Dragon Lord Ember, the Zebra nation, Saddle Arabia, and many other nations in the world.

If one could teleport, or be in every city at once, they would have heard slightly different songs, as the denizens of the world worked to power the spell.

While the vast majority did not study the language mostly used by the everyone in the spell, they sang with an overwhelming sense of serenity, an asking of the universe to help those who needed it. It was a sight no Equestrian citizen, nor tourist would ever forget, nor would this day fade from Equestrian memory for ages to come.

Of those not participating, doctors, nurses, and foals, all their eyes and ears were transifixed to town centers, listening and watching.

*-*-*-*-*-*

Small towns saw it happening first. When a pony or other being doesn't use, or come close to maxing their magic reserves regularly, which doesn't happen often, since the vast majority use only the most basic spells or intrinsic magic countless times in everyday life, they don't have the stamina for complex, or long term spells. Excessive use without training, sees ponies start feeling dizzy, then nauseous, then they pass-out, or try to tumble out and away from the others, before passing out.

Some ponies though, did not heed the warnings that had been drilled into them as foals. Those who tried to keep going, to maintain a sense of dignity, honor, or an over-inflated ego, pushed themselves beyond the warning signs of excessive magic depletion.

Medics still couldn't enter where even the last of the groups were singing, since so much magic would overload even them, so they hoped the participants would manage to hold on.

In all the time they were singing, barely visible above them, shimmering as if a wave of heat, the crystals in all the towns were directing the magic they were given to the Crystal Empire

*-*-*-*-*-*

The mages shifted their tunes as the crystals absorbed the magic from across the world, only changing once the crystals had absorbed enough energy, did they begin moving them closer to the castles, where yet another shift in melodies bound the crystals to the Anchors. Once the binding was done, the crystals were encouraged to move well ahead of the unicorns, pulled as they got closer, to an orbit around the central Geodesic, and absorbing more magic as they moved, yet losing some from the incredibly miniscule imperfections in the pony-sized gems.

The mages held themselves together in the face of so much magic, protected from the heat and thaumic build-up by special spells woven into their clothes by the Princesses. They had been specially trained to maintain their sanity in the face of such overwhelming energy by a constant exposure in specially filtered rooms, where the Stellar Diarchs would channel magic from their charges, helping the mages to better tolerate the overload they would be exposed to.

Another protection the Princesses had encouraged, was that the mages had been told to go no further than where homes were built closest to the castle. The mages were still close enough that there was little loss of magic, as it was being transfered from one medium, to another.

The Princesses and Discord continued their own songs, encouraging the Geodesic to continue consuming the incoming magic. Bit by bit, the spell came together from all over Equestria, to be woven together by the combined work of the Princesses, with Twilight and her intrinsic connection to magic itself, forming the 'needle' that bound the parts together.

As more magic was pressed into the 'stone,' the hotter it grew, spontaneously igniting most all substances within it's growing dome of influence, all but the regalia the Princesses wore was burned away, cloth burned up, while the castle itself and Spike's statue began to melt. Items left in nearby homes, grass and window planters, among other things left behind, began to ignite and burn in the intense thaumic environment. As instructed, the mages kept their tunes going, but backed off, as even their protective garments would suffer degrade in the intense environment.

Once their singing reached it's peak, the immortals opened their eyes, revealing an intense inner glow in the four, and began a new section of the spell.

A vortex of magic began to move around the castle, as the 'lost' and ambiant magic around them was swept up, then forced into a whirlpool towards the Geodesic, further concentrating the magic, and fanning some of the flames.

Almost all at once, the magic surged towards the sphere even faster, as the Princesses and chaos entity, all simultaneously, changed their tune yet again.

In a powerful blast of sound, the Crystal Castle was used as a focusing rod, as the Geodesic used it to send it's utterly massive magical payload through the ground, into the legs, then up through the spire-like castle, into and through the portal. Could the humans have seen it, they would've seen first, a massive burst of light above the poles, then a lattice of spell-weave lace over the planet, just beyond the orbit of the space station, then disappear as it waited and conserved energy for the wave of Thaumic Event to come.

*-*-*-*-*-*

Once the thaumic levels began to drop, did the unicorn mages, pegasi and medical staff stationed around the Empire begin moving again. The pegasi began a rapid effort to move the rain clouds in to douse the blocks around the castle to begin putting out the fires, and cooling the castle off. Massive rain clouds had been gathered and set aside in preparation days in advance, to prevent the spread of the fires that erupted. The city center was enveloped by a massive cloud of steam as the crystal was cooled, and fires doused.

The Princesses and Discord walked to the point the unicorns were gathering, giving off some steam themselves as the moisture hit them, When they made to move away from the immortals, Princess Celestia called to them.

"Don't worry about the residual thaumic energy, it was absorbed by the spell. This is just the heat buildup from channeling and directing the energy. We're safe."

Collective sighs of relief echoed from the group, and they approached, Sunburst asking the obvious question, "Did it work, Your Highnesses?"

All looked to the sky, where the giant image of the Earth was fading away, it's usefulness complete, "We shall see, my ponies. We shall see."

*-*-*-*-*-*

Across Equestria, medics and emergency staff began their treatement of the overtaxed unicorns, hoofing out juice, protien bars, and other suppliments to help the exhausted unicorns recover. Most were too exhausted magically to levitate their needed refreshments, that most used their hooves to hold their food, or had to be helped by hoof.

A medic approached and prone unicorn with sea green fur, and nudged the pony to try to rouse them. "C'mon, lift your head please. I have juice. Delicious apple juice!" The pony refused to budge, prompting the medic to perform a closer examination. She leaned her head closer to the pony to listen for a breath, while using her peripheral vision to see the barrel rise and fall, her ears falling back when none were detected.

"Oh no, oh no!! I need extra help, NOW!!" She desperately tried the most basic form of resuscitation, moving to a more advanced form when a couple of fellow medics arrived.

They tried for several minutes, while nearby unicorns noticed what had happened, and moved to hurl their stomach's contents at the revelation.

Another spoke to the medics still trying to help, "Just, stop. He's dead. He gave too much magic, and killed himself. There's nothing you can do."

With expressions of grief etched on their faces, the medics backed off, and one covered him with their white med jacket.

This would be repeated hundreds of times across Equestria, to all the races, where so many disregarded the lessons of their foalhood, and put out too much magic, exhausting themselves so much, it killed them.

*-*-*-*-*-*

Funerals were held for those who had passed on, but for the rest, there was only preparations. The teams would see in the last two months, their drills almost double as the unicorns were tested relentlessly on the spells to get them from Equestria to Earth and back, ensuring they had memorized in excruciating detail, each and every rune the spells needed to properly function.

The pegasi trained with more weight, not only in case one or both of their companions were hurt, but to get new ponies to safety in any situation.

Earth ponies recieved rigorous final instructions in medical care, while the other two would be given rudimentary first aid training. As their trainers told them, it was best to be prepared for all situations.

Beyond that, there was little else for the ponies to do but wait.