• Published 28th Dec 2017
  • 1,812 Views, 50 Comments

Zero Fate - SoulAkai41

There's no such thing as fate. Only possibilities. So where do I stand?

  • ...

Chapter 5: An Unexpected Call

I didn't know exactly what was going through that little filly's head, but when Rarity found her outside the castle, they were having a brief conversation that I couldn't overhear. Without an explanation, Sweetie Belle just left. Rarity tells me that she was going to go play with her friends. Although, Rarity sounded a little hesitant when she said that. I could tell she was hiding something but that was none of my concern.

After Sweetie Belle left, the rest of us made our way to Twilight's study so I could show everyone my phone and Rarity can take my feet's measurements.

The study was like a personal library. The bookshelves were all built into the walls that scaled from the floor all the way to the ceiling. There was a fireplace with a couple of coaches placed in front of it where we made ourselves comfortable. Twilight, Starlight and I sat on one of the coaches with me in the middle and the other two sitting on each side of me. Rarity sat on the floor in front of me using her measuring tape to measure my feet. Spike sat on the other couch.

After making myself comfortable, I began to tell the girls everything I can about my phone.

"This brand of phone is called a 'Samsung Galaxy 5'. I've had it for 3 years and it's still in perfect working condition." I said.

"So what exactly is it's main purpose?" Starlight asked.

"It's basically a communication device that transmits a signal to another phone around the world. You can talk to anyone on the other side in real-time."

"Anywhere around the world!?" Twilight exclaimed. "Not even telepathy magic can reach that far. Only a few miles at best."

"That's not all it can do. I use it to store music that I like to listen to repeatedly. Here, let me show you." I said as I turn my phone on. Thank goodness it still had battery life. I flick through to find the music app and scroll through my list of musics and pressed one that I think the girls would like. I like to think that I have great taste in music.

I pressed Play.

As soon as the song started playing, I looked to the girls and they all had the same look of shock and amazement on their faces. Spike already seemed to enjoy the song since he was shifting his head side to side in sync with the rhythm.

"This is really impressive, Zero. Your phone is a revelation of technology." Twilight said gleefully. "Oh, I wish I could study it more thoroughly, but I doubt you'd let me."

She wasn't wrong there. This level of technology is probably too advanced for her, judging for what I've seen during my stay here. If I let her tinker with my only phone, I doubt she'd know how to put it back together to it's original state if she dismantles it.

"Yeah, sorry, Twilight. This phone is one of a kind here and it's too valuable to be tampered with without any sufficient knowledge of how it works. All I can do is show you. That is all."

She lowered her head, lowering her eyes and ears in disappointment. "I understand." she said sadly.

The song still plays as I decided to rub her back, hoping to comfort her. That's when an idea came to me. It was a long shot, but if it would satisfy one of the ponies who helped me in my time of need, it'll be worth it.

"Unless..." I said, pausing for dramatic effect. Twilight turned to face me curiously. "You wouldn't happen to know any magical spells that can duplicate items, would you?"

Twilight responded with a gasp of excitement, forcing me to retract my hand from her back.

"Zero, you're a genius!" She shouted as she got off the coach. She then takes my phone in her magical grasp, the song still playing. "Umm, do you mind if I take this somewhere where I can concentrate on duplicating it?"

"As long as you don't break it, go wild." I replied reassuringly.

With a huge grin on her face, Twilight trots out of the room with my phone in hand... er, hoof. Whatever. As soon as she was gone, an annoyed groan comes from the baby dragon.

"Aww, rats. I was really enjoying that song."

"Don't worry, buddy." I said. "If Twilight succeeds in making herself a copy, there'll be plenty of time to show you more of my songs."

Spiked looked at me and smiled. "Thanks, Zero."

"Wait a minute!" Starlight suddenly exclaimed. "You didn't show her how to turn off the music! What if something bad happens while it's still active!?"

"Oh." That's what she's freaking out about? Sure, I agree that it's not wise to leave anything running when you're not using it, but I don't think there's anything to worry about.

"It's fine, Starlight. From what I've seen, Twilight seems like a very intelligent pony. Besides, she saw me play the music, I'm sure she's smart enough to know how to turn it off."

Starlight opened her mouth about to make a retort, but said nothing.

"Seriously, I think you worry too much."

"I think Twilight's personality is starting to rub off on her student." Rarity said.

Starlight looked down at Rarity, blushing with embarrassment. "What!? I am not as over-reactive as Twilight!"

Spike laughed at the irony. I joined in on the glee.

"Hate to dip my little fly in your ointment, Starlight, but you're a bit of a hypocrite." I said. "When I first met you both, I thought you two were sisters. Think about it; You both have similar colors, names and talents. Anyone who's never met you both would've assumed the same thing."

"Alright, alright! That's enough!" She said in defeat.

Wow, that actually felt good. I never get the chance to make a point to someone or prove them wrong at anything. Wait, did I just win an argument? Boom! I can finally cross that off the bucket list!

After about 10 minutes of waiting around, Rarity had already finished in taking my measurements. She decided to head back to her boutique, saying that she should get to work on them now. Before she could leave, I gave her a genuine hug to thank her for her troubles.

Moments after she departed, Twilight came back from her little duplication ritual. Before she could tell me the results, I silently prayed that nothing went wrong. Fortunately, everything went swimmingly. She held in her magic, not one, but two smartphones! She passed the copy to me and I wanted to see if it was working. I pressed the 'On' button on the side and the screen lighted up with the same lock screen I remembered. Swiping the screen, it showed me the home screen. All my apps were still there. I went to my music app and played a different song.


Yes! It works like a charm!

I hopped off the coach and moved towards Twilight to hug her. "Thanks, Twilight!"

She hugs me back. "No. Thank you, Zero. It was your idea, after all."

We held our hug for a few moments. We were interrupted by Spike.

"Whoa, this song's even better than the first!"

"What can I say?" I said with a smile. "I like to think I have great taste in music."

"I'll say!"

Spike continued to dance, with minimal movement, to the song. I look to my sides to see what Starlight and Twilight think of it. Starlight didn't seem to enthused with this one, nor did Twilight. Oh, well, I can't expect everyone to like the same music I listen to.

"Well, uhh..." Starlight said. "Oh! Why don't you tell us a little bit about your background, Zero? I'm sure you must have so many interesting things to tell us."

My smile faded.

I didn't really enjoy telling others about my past. Mostly because I didn't want them feeling sorry for me. Sympathy was never a welcome guest in my conscience. Unlike these ponies, my life was never sunshine and rainbows (literally), instead, it was a mixed bag of disappointment, regrets and failures.

"Umm... well..."

Starlight noticed my hesitation. "Oh, it's okay. You don't have to tell us anything if you don't want to. But I would still like to get to know you better."

"I don't doubt that your curious about me, but my story isn't exactly as pleasant as you think."

Starlight drooped her ears and sighed. But I didn't want to see her disappointed. I guess telling her what she wants is the least I can do after all she's done for me so far.

"But if telling you means that much to you, then I'll give you what you want."

Her expression suddenly took a 180. "You will!?"

"Sure. But first..." I reached for the phone copy that was just finishing the song that Spike was listening to and scrolled through the list to find a song that would go with story-telling.

"Aww, man, I loved that song." Spike said.

"I'm glad you did, Spike, and I'll show you more later. But right now I'm gonna play something a little more tranquil."

I played the next song before setting it back on the coffee table.

I leaned back on the coach and made myself comfortable.

"Well, where should I start?"

"How about your family?" Twilight asked as she took a seat next to me.

"Alright. Well, my mother was a real gem. I meant figuratively, not literally. She was always there for me and all she wanted for me was to be happy. Sure, sometimes she spoils me, but unlike most kids who take advantage of it, I was actually grateful. I wanted to do so many nice things for her in return. We were inseparable."

"What about your father? Didn't you get along with him?" Starlight asked.

I knew one of them was going to ask me about... him. Frankly, I was prepared to tell them.

With a heavy sigh, I continued. "Yes and no."

"What do you mean?" Spike asked.

"When I was younger, I got along well with him and I wanted to respect him. But when I was 8 years old, he began having affairs."

I heard a gasp from each of them. "You mean... he cheated on your mother?" Twilight asked.

"Bingo. I never found out why he did it, but I had my theories. Shortly after, he and my Mum broke up and I was stuck with my mother. Honestly, I'm glad they broke up. Because after my Dad showed his true colors, I lost all respect for him and realized that the time I spent in trying to respect him at all was a huge waste of time. I used to visit him on weekends until he got remarried. But that wasn't the end. He and his new wife relocated to a crummy old town way up north from where I lived. When I was 13, I was sent there to visit him for 3 weeks. I really didn't want to go, but my mother insisted. Even during the first week, he didn't treat me like a son. More like a prisoner."

"That sounds terrible! What kind of father would do that to his own son!?" Starlight exclaimed.

"The kind who doesn't deserve a son, apparently." Twilight answered.

"So what happened afterwards?" Spike asked. "You went back to your mother after 3 weeks, right?"

"That was the plan, but..." I said, starting to shiver in anger. "3 weeks turned into 6 months."

"What!?" They all said in unison, shocked.

"I don't know what he was thinking but he obviously didn't care about me. Every night, I went without dinner. I attended the worst school imaginable, his wife was abusive and he wouldn't let me do anything I wanted. Every night, I cried myself to sleep. I wanted to run away. But one day, I finally had the courage to tell him how much I hate him. He responded by beating me."

I hear another gasp out of my listeners.

"But he finally realized that there was no point in keeping me around anymore. So he sent me back home to my mother. She found out what happened and knew that she made a huge mistake in sending me to live with my deadbeat father. I haven't seen him now for 10 years, and I hope I never do again but I'm just glad that I was back with someone who truly cared about me."

Before I continued my story, I was suddenly embraced by Starlight who hugged me tight. "Oh, Zero. I'm so sorry you had to go through all that. You must really miss your mother." She said enviously.

I hugged her back while feeling another hoof on my back. I turn my head around to see it was Twilight rubbing my back.

"Are you sure you don't want to return home? Your mother must be worried sick about you." Twilight asked.

"I've already made up my mind, Twilight. I want to stay here with you guys. I've got nothing worth looking for to back there anyway. Although, I do wish there was a way to tell her that I'm alright. I know she'll understand."

The song playing on my copied phone ends. I decided to leave it since I do enjoy a bit of silence from time to time. Instead, I enjoy cuddling with Starlight. After a minute of hugging, I was starting to get a little sleepy. I never know that embracing a creature with such a soft coat could be like a bedtime story for little kids. Then again, I am a little kid.

"Don't you worry about a thing, Zero. If there is a way to make contact to your world, I'll find it for you. And if you still decide to stay here, then I respect your wishes." Twilight said.

Starlight and I broke our hug and I turned to look at the Alicorn. "You mean it?" I asked, a little surprised at Twilight's claim.

"Cross my heart, hope to fly. Stick a cupcake in my eye." She said while making strange gestures with her forelegs.

"Thanks." I said, giving her a smile.

I'm sure the others were still curious about my backstory. I didn't really want to tell them anymore. My thoughts were interrupted when my phone in Twilight's possession started making an alarming sound.

I knew that wasn't my actual alarm tone because that plays a different tune. That was my ringtone. Someone was calling me!

"What the..." Twilight says as she hovered the phone over to me. "Zero, what's it doing?"

I grabbed the phone out of the air before answering her. "Somebody's calling me? But that's impossible!" I declared before looking to the top of the screen. The signal bar was full.

The rest of the screen showed a photo I took of my mother a few years ago. She was smiling for the birdie. I hesitate to answer it. Usually she calls me to check up on me. Even though I'm an independent adult, she still sees me as her little boy. If I answer the phone, how am I going to explain my situation to her? I don't want to lie to her, but I doubt she's going to believe that I'm in another world, especially since I can still communicate with her on my phone.

"It's my mother." I whispered to myself, nervously.

Starlight leans towards me to get a better look at Mum's picture. "That's your mother? She seems nice. Maybe you should talk to her."

"And tell her what!?" I exclaimed, making Starlight back up away slightly. "That I'm living in a literal fantasy world that I'm not coming home?"

"I'm sure she'll understand if you explain it to her. We'll be right next to you to back up your story too!" Starlight says.

"Yeah! So, go on. Answer it." Spike gestured.

Without a second thought, I swiped the screen to the side to answer her call. Luckily, she didn't hang up before I answered. I then bring the phone up to my left ear. My hands were shaking.


"Sweetie, it's Mum!" said the voice on the phone. Yep, it was definitely her.

"Hey, Mum."

"How are you, cheeky-chops?"

Oh, God, she still uses her cute names on me.

"Uhh, I'm okay. I'm fine. How about you?"

"Oh, I'm fine, darling. Just checking up on you, see how you're faring along."

"Yeah, thanks."

"I hope you're eating well, not just filling up on noodles and junk."

Dammit, I hate it when she keeps asking about what I eat. I know she's like every mother who wants what's best for her child, but I wish she'd learn to just deal with things on my own. But no matter how much she meddles into my life, I still love her to bits.

"Yeah, yeah, don't worry about it."

"Honey, are you sure you're doing alright? You sound a little different."

Oh, crap. I forgot to disguise my premature voice. I clear my throat and lower my speaking tone.

"Um-- *ahem* -- I just had, uhh... a bit of a..." I didn't know what to say next. On one hand; I lie to her and hopefully she'll drop the subject. On the other hand; She sees through my ruse and starts asking impossible questions.

I don't like my options one bit.

I was starting to panic. My hands won't stop shaking as I held my phone in both of them. If I don't tell her the truth now, it'll be harder to tell her the longer I wait. What am I gonna do!?

"Mum, can I talk to you another time? I need to take care of something. Sorry!"

"Luther? What ar--" Her voice was cut off as I desperately hung up.

I dropped the phone onto my lap and grip the sides of my head

"DAAAAAUUUGH! WHAT IS WRONG WITH ME!!??" I shouted, my whole body shaking with worry.

I then suddenly felt Starlight wrap her forelegs around me as she pulls me towards her in a soft cuddle.

"There, there, Zero. It's alright." she whispers softly.

I started feeling like crying again. I let the tears that were starting to build up in my eyes fall down my cheeks and into the soft fur of Starlight's chest.

"I don't know what I'm gonna do, Starlight." I whimper. "She's done so much for me. How am I gonna tell her that she might never see me again?"

"I know how much you must be worried but I promise that we'll find a way to tell her. In the meantime, why don't you get some rest?"

I only woke up about 6 hours ago and everything that's happened today has started to make me sleepy. Must be a side effect of being a kid again. I guess I'll take her advice and take a nap. But I don't want to move from this spot.

"Starlight?" I whisper.

"Yes, Zero?"

"Can I just stay with you like this? It... It really helps."

Starlight smiles and rubs my back.

"You don't even have to ask, Zero. We can stay here as long as you want."

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