• Published 14th Aug 2016
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Sage of Harmony (Season 1) - Eon Seb

The Tree of Harmony has sat dormant for years it's power stolen by the well-meaning Princesses. So it has decided to choose some champions to help spread Harmony across the world, this is their story.

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Ch. 4 Investigations, Introductions, and Inspiration. (edited)

Late at night, in the richest district of Canterlot, a pair of shadowy figures lurked. With a quick check of their surroundings, they hurried to the side door of one of the largest homes. After being granted entry, they took a steadying breath before delivering the bad news to their master "Sir, the Princess has discovered your attempt to imprison the bearer of magic. What should we do?"

The response was quick, cultured, and calm, "No need to worry. None of our men are listed in the guard rosters, and none of the paperwork has any connections to me. We will have to be careful for a while, though. They are going to be on high alert through the next Gala at the very least. Continue to gather information. I want to stay as up to date as possible." With a nod and a quick bow, the informants left, melting into the shadows as if they were never there.

Celestia was facing her oldest and most hated foe. Worse than Discord, more ruthless than Sombra, and almost as painful as Nightmare Moon's betrayal at times. What enemy was this? Simple, the paperwork backlog to get Luna reinstated. The nobles had had a field day when she introduced Nightmare Moon to take up the vacant second throne in the Diarchy. Oddly enough, were it not for the support of her "nephew" Blueblood, it would have taken twice, or even thrice as long to calm everyone down and get the word out. Celestia looked at her overfilled desk with a heavy sigh. "I still need to check the court orders and guard reports for that incident 5 years ago. I hope Night is having better luck with the Sparkles."

Nightmare walked up to the door of a well maintained home in the mid section of the city with her jaw set and address in her magic. "This should be the place, and if I timed this right, the good captain should be here as well." with that in mind she knocked firmly but politely. No reason to be rude, yet.

The door opened soon after, "How may I help...?" The blue unicorn who had opened the door paused mid question upon seeing who was at the door. His eyes were wide and confused.

"Good day, sir. May I come in to speak with you for a moment?" Night tried for a kind smile but it seemed to have the opposite effect as the stallion at the door fainted at the sight of her fangs, "Oh dear."

A moment later a light grey mare with a white and purple striped mane arrived at the door. "Dear what seems to be the problem?" she paused as she took in the sight of her husband passed out with the newly announced Princess standing at the door. "Oh, ah," after gathering herself, she put on a charming smile, "Please come in, your Majesty." she led the way, levitating her husband to the sitting room, where they joined a Blue maned unicorn stallion and a pink alicorn, who both rose to greet the new visitor.

"Princess Nightmare! Um, it is okay to just call you by one name, right?" the other alicorn seemed quite surprised to see her.

"Yes, it's fine, but I see no reason for you to use my title young one. You are Princess Cadenza correct?" Night settled for a close mouthed smile to avoid a repeat of the previous events.

"Oh yes, though I prefer Cadence." She then looked at the pony seated next to her, "This is Shining Armor, my, uh, coltfriend, and these are Night Light and Twilight Velvet," she pointed to each pony as she said their name. By this point Night Light had been revived and was looking rather sheepish. After a pause, Cadence asked " So what business do you have here, Nightmare?"

Nightmare took a moment to recompose herself, "I was wanting to talk to you about your daughter, Twilight Sparkle." After that announcement, the other occupants seemed to burst with questions.

"Where is she? is she hurt?" Night Light was the first to speak up, he seemed near hysterical.

"Whatever we did that made her cut off contact, we're sorry! Please tell her that for us." Velvet seemed to shrink into her chair.

"What do you want to know Princess?" Shining was in full captain mode, but Night could see the worry in his eyes.

"Is everything okay? Does she need help?" Cadences question surprised Nightmare the most. At her inquisitive look, Cadence continued, "What? I can't worry about somepony I used to foalsit?"

Night raised a hoof for quiet. "I was here to inquire as to the validity of a claim that she had been banished from the family, but it seems that is not the case, correct?" if the questions from earlier had not convinced her, the insulted looks on the other's faces did. "According to her, she was handed a document striking her of her name and re-dubbing her Midnight Void. That is why she never contacted you. She believed you never wanted to see her again."

Velvet growled "We never signed such a document. Is that why she moved to Ponyville?"

"No. That involves something my sister is investigating as we speak. You knew about her moving to Ponyville?"

"The last piece of mail we got from her said she was moving there to accept a position as the local librarian. Was that not true?" Velvet seemed to have become the unofficial spokesman of the group.

"She is the librarian now, but originally she was living in the ruins of my and my sister's old castle. She was also caring for a young one while there," upon seeing the faces of the others, Nightmare realized she may have said too much.

"Where is the bastard that abandoned my sister/daughter with a foal?!" The males of the Sparkle Clan appeared ready for war with the ladies of the house not far behind them.

"She found the child there when she arrived and took it upon herself to care for them." Nightmare knew this part would be sensitive, she would have to tread carefully. "Cadence, how much has my sister told you about my history?"
Cadence seemed to grow sad just hearing the question, "A-all of it. She wanted to make sure she wouldn't let history repeat itself."

Nightmare sighed before continuing, "My seclusion was not of my own choice," the Sparkle families eyes all widened as they contemplated her words. "At the time of my banishment, part of my magic was left in the old castle. That magic became its own entity over time. When Midnight found them, she used part of her own magic to make it flesh and blood. She named the new filly Spectrum Shadow in honor of her legend as the Pony of Shadows. So young Spectrum views Midnight as her "father" and, myself as her "mother," at the end of her tale she noted that Night Light seemed to have fainted again. Velvet was stone faced. Cadence seemed to have gone introspective and Shining was just staring at her with wide eyes.

"Tw-Twily's a, dad?!" Shining came out of his stupor with a shout, "You mean I'm-I'm an Uncle?" he seemed to wobble for a moment before joining his father in blissful unconsciousness.

Velvet looked at her son and husband exasperated before turning to face Nightmare with a look that managed to send a shiver up her spine. "So, will you be making an honest mare out of my daughter, your Highness?" the question could have frozen a windigo. Cadence started out of her thoughts after hearing that, she was looking at Nightmare in much the same way.

Nightmare felt shock, fear, and no small amount of joy. If they were willing to stare her down, she knew that her daughter had found the perfect "Father", "I will be honest with you. I do not know if we’ll be together. But I intend to put my all into making this work for my daughter's sake if nothing else. Twilight is a strong, brave, and beautiful mare, so I promise you I will not hurt her, but neither will I lie to her if things do not work out. We will be adults about it and settle things so that we both can be happy."

Both Cadence and Velvet found that acceptable, "So what can you tell me about my granddaughter?" Velvet's kind smile was back in full effect. As they sat to begin sharing stories, Cadence whispered to her new aunt "beautiful huh?" Once again Nightmare was grateful for her black, blush proof coat.

At the same time in Ponyville, a very different meeting was taking place. "Hi. My name's Spectrum. Mind if I sit with you guys?" Apple Bloom, Sweetie Belle and Scootaloo were surprised when the new student asked to join them for lunch. She had been quite the sight that morning, with her black coat and odd eyes. Many students were avoiding her due to how much she resembled Nightmare.

Apple Bloom was the first to speak, "Sure ya can sit with us, right girls?" the others nodded. After she had situated herself, and got her lunch out, Scootaloo could no longer contain herself.

"Are you related to Princess Nightmare Moon?" they all looked at Spectrum waiting for an answer.

After a pause she whispered "Can you girls keep a secret?" After all 3 had nodded, she said "Okay but you have to Pinkie promise not to tell anyone until I give the okay." After the promises had been made she leaned in close, "Nightmare Moon is my mom."

After the girls had calmed down Sweetie asked. "Why are you living with Miss Midnight, then?"

Here she smiled, thinly to hide her small fangs. "Because Midnight is my dad." she giggled at the shocked looks on the girl's faces.

Before any of them could get their wits together to ask what she meant, they heard a loud voice, "Oh look. The loser table has a new member. Hey, new blank-flank, what's with the eyes?"

As one, the girls began to get angry. How dare those bullies insult their new friend. Before they could do anything, though, Spectrum winked at them and whispered "Let me handle this." She turned and in a bubbly voice said "Hi! Want to join us for lunch? I brought some extra fish," She said this while smiling with her fangs in full view, much to the bullies' shock.
"Oh ah, n-no thanks. We'll just go over there. Come on, Silver." They walked as fast as they could in the opposite direction without flat out running.

Spectrum giggled as she turned around to see the looks of awe on the girls faces. "Now let's eat, I would offer you some fish but I don't think you'd like it." and with that, the CMC gained it's newest member.

The rest of the school day passed without any further incidents. "So, what do you girls do for fun?" Spectrum was still bursting with energy.

Scootaloo answered, "We try to get awesome cutie marks," she than deflated. "Well, more like try to get any cutie mark." The girls seemed to get disheartened after that, but Spectrum seemed excited.

"Great. I have a list of things I've been wanting to try, but dad said I had to have others with me to be safe. Want to see if there is anything on the list that sounds fun?"

This seemed to bring the girls out of their funk as they all ran to the library. The town was soon treated to a shout of "Cutie Mark Crusader Wolf Riders! YAY!" At that moment, Midnight had the strangest feeling that she was going to need to stock up on tree sap remover.

One week later (start of applebuck season)

Midnight had just finished getting the library ready for the day when Rainbow crashed through her window, again. "What is it this time? Did the girls try to tame a beast from the forest again?"

It had come as a surprise to no one that, with a fourth member, the CMC were causing even more problems than before (though having the girls over constantly to have the tree sap removed had given Midnight more time to meet with her friends, and learn that Scootaloo had been adopted by Fluttershy).

Rainbow just shook her head, "Worse. You remember two years ago when Big Mac had to clear the orchard on his own?" That had been interesting, he had managed to do it but only by focusing on work for a full week with no distractions. It was a bad time for AJ to be down with the flu.

Midnight nodded, now quite worried, "How could this be worse?"

Rainbow answered her with haunted eyes, "AJ's going to be trying to clear the orchard this year, and I don't think she bothered to cancel any of the other things she had planned this week."

Midnight went wide eyed as her brain went into hyper plan mode. "Okay, we can fix this. You go gather the girls and have them all meet back here. I'm going to go try and convince AJ to come over so we can settle this before she goes insane."

"Consarn it, Midnight! Put me down!" Ponyville was a strange town, but seeing the local librarian carrying one of the Apples hog-tied on her back was one of the strangest things that had happened to date.

"Nope. You refuse to listen to reason. You shrugged off the advice from the rest of your family, ignored my advice to clear your schedule, and I could tell you weren’t going to bother getting proper sleep. Since you are being this stubborn, I am taking matters into my own hooves, and I got Granny Smith's permission first, so there."

"What?!" Applejack could not believe it. Why would Granny turn on her like this?

"Yeah. She agrees with me that you are likely to overextend yourself and get hurt before you ask for help, so to avoid you joining your brother with an injury, she gave me the okay to stage an intervention." By this point they had made it to the library, they walked in to see the confused faces on the rest of the girls.

Rainbow just looked at Midnight with a shocked expression, "I thought you were going to talk to her!?"

"She refused to see reason, even when her family said my idea should help." Midnight put AJ down and untied her. "Now we are all here to make sure our friend does not kill or injure herself this week. Ideas?"

Pinkie spoke up first "Raribear agreed to help me with baking so you can focus on getting the apples down, Jackie."

At AJ's confused look Rarity continued, "I want to see just how beautiful I can make some of the sweets we'll be making. This should be quite fun."

Fluttershy spoke up next, "Rainbow agreed to help me with the bunny census this year if I help with her stunt practice, so we've got that covered. Is that everything?"

AJ was struck dumb, "Now hold on, I can still help." She stopped talking when she saw the looks the others were giving her.

Rainbow sighed "AJ, I know how stubborn you are. If we let you continue the way you were planning ,someone was going to get hurt - most likely you. You're always around and ready to help any of us, so just let us help you for once, okay?"

AJ started at Rainbow for a long moment, then, with a sigh, she said "Okay. Does anyone want to help me gather the apples?" She was not expecting an answer.

"I'd be glad to," Midnight (who had gone upstairs during Rainbow's speech) responded. She was coming back with a blue work hat and an old book, "You buck the trees, I pick up the apples, and with some hard work, patience, and a little bit of luck, we can be done in no time."

"What's the book for?" Applejack sounded slightly relieved.

"Just an old spell I found that helps increase how long we can keep working. Rarity, mind casting this on our hats?"

With a curious nod Rarity opened the book. "Inspiration Manifestation. I don't recognize this spell at all dear," she still cast it on the hats after Midnight assured her it was mostly safe

"We just have to make sure we take the hats off before we try to sleep and we should get the orchard clear in no time." Everypony went off to do what they planned, the girls letting AJ and Midnight know that if they needed more help at the farm, they just needed to ask.

"Finally done." Rainbow flopped on to the ground.

It had not been easy, but as the others got done with their plans and joined the workforce, they had managed to gather all the apples. There had still been a few problems however.

Such as a rainbow-shaped hole in the wall of the library which Midnight found after finishing the second day of harvesting.

"So how exactly did this happen?" Midnight was using all her practice with Shady to be both tough and fair with her friends.

After placing an ice pack on Rainbow's head, Shy answered "Um, w-well, Rainbow wanted to see how fast she could go if launched by a large earth pony so I, shifted once we made sure no one was around and we forgot that the launcher was pointed towards the library. Sorry Midnight."

"Okay. Just tell Rainbow to be more careful next time, and pass me the hammer, please." It was a good thing Spike joined them for the bunny census. He was able to stop the plans of the evil Angel Bunny before they started. That was the first time Midnight had actually seen Fluttershy mad, and she never wanted to see it again. Then there was the muffin incident.

Well, not incident. More like small scale battle. Apparently Rarity made the muffins look too good. The local mail mare, a pegasus by the name of Ditzy Doo, AKA Derpy due to her walleyes, had started a small riot over who got the last of the "Perfect" muffins, resulting in several ponies being knocked out, and Derpy getting banned from Sugarcube Corner for a week.

Now all the girls were gathered around a table in the orchard, the spell had been removed from both hats, and they all sat enjoying a nice cool glass of apple juice with friends. Each wondered when the next small adventure would arrive in Ponyville.