• Published 30th Nov 2016
  • 1,414 Views, 73 Comments

The Legend, Rebuilt - Caldoric

A tale in which a human is Displaced, and charged with managing the progression of both Equestria and the Bionicle universe. And, to top it all off, all is not as peaceful as it seems...

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A Token Gesture, In A Ravaged City

Caldoric looked at his silent visitors, who were in turn looking at each other, as if in confusion. “What, did I say something wrong?” He asked. “Or were you all in the middle of something important when I summoned you?”

“You said take back Canterlot. Just what exactly happened here in this Equestria?” Sebaste asked. “The last time I had to take back Canterlot was in a different Equestria… and it was in a war.” He then sighed, pinching the bridge of his helmet, and said, “All I know right now is that we have Chrysalis in what appears to be crystal like armor, Changelings I've never seen before and from what Sasha told me, Toa that turn into ponies. Just… what exactly is going on here?” The other four murmured agreement, the three other humans having taken their helmets off and were now holding them in the crooks of their arms.

“Long story short,” Caldoric replied, “shit’s kinda fucked. Apparently things here kicked off after the season 6 finale, when Thorax took control of the hive from Chrysalis, reforming it in the process. After she went off in a rage, she apparently teamed up with Sombra, and they took both the Crystal Heart and young Flurry Heart, about three months ago. Then, she abducted Trixie and Starlight Glimmer, learned a few things about Zecora from them, and killed the poor zebra. She also stole the Alicorn Amulet. Then she and her newly-formed Shardling army took over the entire country, and it seemed like some of the neighboring nations also were suffering attacks, according to reports received before communication was cut off. Then the Elements got themselves tossed through the mirror to Mata Nui by Discord, who apparently scrambled its destination settings, while Canterlot finally fell.” Caldoric paused to take a breath.

“Also, Discord, Celestia, and Luna are under Chrystalla's control, and Cadence and Shining are nowhere to be found. I have no idea about how the Toa Mata and the rest of Mata Nui are capable of ‘Shifting,’ as they call it, though.”

“So Sombra's somehow still alive even though he was completely destroyed by the Heart?” Sebastian asked. “That's impossible.”

“Unless he was just banished… again. I mean, he could've left a part of himself somewhere outside the heart’s radius in case of failure, like a Horcrux.” Caldoric shrugged. “Or maybe some sympathetic local freed him, maybe even allowing him to take them over. Poison goes where poison’s welcome, ya know?”

“So what exactly is your story? How do you fit into this?” Viktor asked.

“I was dropped on Mata Nui about a day ago, somewhere on the lava fields near Ta-Koro, after buying a few cool-looking things from this vendor dude at Comic-Con San Diego, who was dressed like Slenderman. Of course, my sister and I only went to the con because, about a week before I was supposed to report to the local Draft Office, a bomb got dropped on it. Fortunately, this meant that I could go ahead and wear the costume I'd been putting together since late 2018. It was, uh, supposed to be a sort of self-insert Toa OC. Completely overpowered, too, since it was based off the 'Knight of Space’ classpect, but I figured I might as well get the itch to do that out of the way for my first con.”

“Yeah… that vendor is known by many Displaced as the Merchant. He’s responsible for the majority of the Displaced in the Multiverse.” Sebaste explained before he realized something. “Wait, did you say it was 2018 back where you came from?”

“No, I said I started my costume late that year. It’s currently 2020, which is kinda funny because, in hindsight, we never should've allowed Trump or Hillary to run for President in 2016, or allowed the former to keep office after Russia tipped the elections in Trump’s favor. Not with that war they started.” Caldoric said. “Er… it is 2020, right? Or, was? Oh, he better not be yanking people from multiple points in the timeline… that never ends well in stories.”

“It was 2013 when I was Displaced…” Sebaste said. “Obama was still president.”

“2015 for us.” Sebastian put in. “Trump was still running in our timeline. Wait, what do you mean Trump and Hillary started a war in your time?” He asked.

“Maybe we can discuss this when there isn't a legion of Shardlings outside the castle?” Viktor spoke up, looking towards the nearly shattered window, where everyone could see Shardlings patrolling the streets, trying to find a way in.

They were quite obviously staying well out of range of the castle’s newly-acquired defenses, occasionally tossing a spell toward the structure. The crowd of recently freed ponies were doing their best to try and help take out what few Shardlings came too close, but there was little else to do.

“I have to agree,” Caldoric said, rising from his crouched position, “but what can we do? They have us surrounded, as far as I can tell. I doubt we could get out through the crystal caverns below, since Chrystalla probably remembers those from last time she was here. Actually, we should probably seal those off, if possible. And without some sort of “deus ex machina” type of superweapon squirreled away in the castle somewhere that can target a specific entity’s signature or whatever, I'm not liking the odds of facing her full force head-on. Yes, even with the assembled Element Bearers, the Toa Mata, and ourselves.”

Sebaste smirked under his helmet. “You seem to forget what my team and I are capable of. Vik, Sasha and I can summon different vehicles, be it land or… air support.” He said. “Sasha has access to tanks that put the Scorpion to shame, while Vik and I can switch between UNSC or Covenant vehicles. I believe you got a glimpse of that during that warm up fight in here when Vik summoned that Cyclops. But Sasha recently unlocked a new ability that allows him to actually turn into a type of vehicle.”

Caldoric cocked his head to one side. “Whaa--? No, nevermind,” he said, almost to himself, then shook his head to regain focus. “Alright, improbable as that sounds, it might be useful. I’m just… I'm not sure I'm ready to go to war. Like, if I'm psychologically able to. Killing other living things, risking my life, potentially failing to save someone in danger… not to mention I’m not sure of my own powers, among other things…”

With a blur of green, Lewa was abruptly amongst the circle of former humans. “Do not worry-fret too much, brother,” he said, placing a hand on Caldoric's shoulder, “the answers will be reveal-shown in time.”

Caldoric smiled gratefully, then abruptly seized the Toa of Air in a tight hug. Lewa, surprised, gingerly returned the gesture.

Sebaste chuckled as he and the others watched. “Alright… Let's teach those bugs not to mess with a Displaced and his home turf.” He said as Sebastian’s form began to glow brightly and he began to shift into his Contemptor Dreadnought form. In seconds, a massive walker armed with a massive rotary cannon and a fist that had twin gun barrels poking out of its palm. A single helmet could be seen in the head opening.

“Mata Nui!” Lewa exclaimed, backing off a few steps as Caldoric released him, and turned around.

“I totally second that…” Caldoric muttered, as the ponies and other Toa in the room noticed it too. “That… holy fucking Gadunka, that thing’s huge as fuck. Couldn't we have done this at the front door though? I’m not sure it’ll fit through the halls… unless you're just going to bust through that wall again.”

++ Erm…++ Sebastian's voice had gotten deeper as a result of his vox unit. ++Well, I was thinking of keeping them occupied while you guys snuck out and flanked them.++

“Whatever you think-say,” Lewa said, holding his hands up placatingly, “just don't step on us.”

“Agreed,” said Rarity, coming over with the rest of the heroes.

There was a snort from Sebastian. ++ Trust me, there are walkers called Titans that are way bigger than me. In fact… Just one Titan would be as big as the mountain. ++

With a faint “eep!” Fluttershy fell over, unconscious.

“Wow,” commented Caldoric, “Attack on Titan, much?”

“Ah’m not sure whatcha mean by that,” Applejack supplied, “but it seems like it’d be a darn good distraction, if’n we e'er needed one.” Tahu merely eyed the giant mech with envy.

Sebaste chuckled. “There’s a reason the Imperium call Titans ‘God Machines’. They have enough firepower to wipe out entire armies.” He said. “Sasha is one of the smaller walkers called a Contemptor Dreadnought, a devastating force in its own right. They’re piloted by injured Adeptus Astartes-”

There was a large explosive sound that shook the castle, followed by a loud groan, an unusually deep silence, then a huge crash as something hit the ground outside.

“I think they knocked off a tower…” Rainbow said, a trace of worry touching her normally confident voice.

“Yeah, how about we get out there while there’s still a city to save?” Asked Pohatu.

“Yeah,” added Pinkie, “the readers are probably getting a bit restless with all this Blood Gulching…”

Caldoric looked at her questioningly. “Wait, we’re being chronicled?” He asked, but got no further with his inquiry.

“Can we just go and save this city already?” Demanded Tahu.

++ Right, I’ll go and draw their attention, you guys go and flank them! ++ Sebastian yelled before he smashed through the wall, the barrels on his weapon spinning to life.

“Right, front door’s this way, everypony!” Twilight exclaimed, leading the way.

“And another thing, I think that term needs to--” Caldoric began.

“No time!” Several others interjected. Soon, they were at the front doors, where they paused.

“So, what’s the plan?” Kopaka asked.

“Seriously?” Caldoric asked. “When have any of the plans we put together ever worked? We plan, we get there, everything goes to hell. I say we just say 'fuck it,’ and attack stuff.”

“Vik and I can provide armored support. And if we get into a spot where we can switch to aircraft, you’ll have some air support.” Sebaste said. “Alex, you and Rainblade are with Caldoric and his gang.” The two nodded in response.

“Alright,” Caldoric replied, his voice taking on a steely quality, “but we’re essentially gonna just wing it. Don't go looking to me for strategies. I want this over with so I can go home...” And with that, he slipped out the doors and charged into the fray, lightsabers drawn and humming.

“Vik, Scorpion Tanks on three.” Sebaste said, “1…2...3!” The two Spartans slammed the doors open and charged out before two tanks materialized next to them and, after the two had jumped in, the group then advanced, with the two tanks leading the way.

Caldoric turned momentarily, after dealing with a few stray Shardlings, and made a mental comment to himself about the viability of picking up chicks in the metal monstrosities, before snapping out of it.

Spotting what looked to be a small group of imps nearby that seemed in a hurry to be somewhere, he followed their trail. Unfortunately, he soon discovered that it was actually part of a rather large group of the Stygian menaces, which quickly had him surrounded. It was also only then that Caldoric realized that the small objects they had been carrying were large-bore flintlock style pistols and rifles.

“Oh, quiznak,” he said, and prepared to fight.

++ FOR THE LION! ++ A hail of Adamantium-tipped bullets tore through the group, catching the Imps off guard. A few seconds later, Sebastian came charging in from the left side, the massive gun that served as his right arm spewing bullets at an incredible rate. ++ What are you waiting for, Naming Day?! Get a move on! ++

“I thought you were supposed to keep the main force busy so we could flank 'em!” Caldoric shot back, going to town on the imps. “Yet here you are, leading it right at us! Did things really go to hell that quickly?!” He then did his best to gather the intangible “grist” the imps dropped on death, (they were game constructs, after all,) as well as picking up and storing a few green-edged Strife cards. To his satisfaction, they’d already been allocated to various Gunkind settings.

++ Well someone had to save your ass from becoming a strainer, and besides, you’re a bit far from the others to help flank them! ++ the Astartes retorted. ++ Besides, if I know Seb, he already has a battle plan. ++

With a smile that would've set anyone on edge, Caldoric swapped out his lightsabers for his bruteshot, flipped its switch to “∞,” and opened fire on the now very worried imps. ♪Boom, boom, boom!♪ He sang, barely to be heard, ♪I can't stop singin’ this bloody tune, tune tune! It’s gonna make my brain go boom, boom, boom! I can't stop singin’ this bloody tune, tune, tune! I’m the volatilest sort! What a violent force, that’ll frighten Spartans! Hark and hear Leonidas talk when he sees me: Tonight, we dine indoors!♪

“It’s official, a ballistic missile couldn't get this ‘rizzle’! I blow through 'lings like a seven-foot chisel! Think you better shiver when you hear that sizzle, fo’ ‘shizzle!’ Caldoric continued his mad rant as he ran off in search of more foes, oblivious to anything else at this point. “Take a listen! It’s a premonition of my mission: death by demolition! If I don't come home, there’s a sign in my kitchen to describe why I'm missin’: gone fission!”

Meanwhile, the Toa Mata had split ways with the Elements, with each group taking a tank as they sought out strategic positions, from which to flank their foe.

*Vik, what's your situation?* Sebaste radioed as he and the Elements, along with Alex, sat on a small hill overlooking the battle going on below.

*The Toa and I are in position to engage. Sasha and Caldoric are in the thick of it at the moment. * Viktor replied from where he, Rainblade and the Toa were. *Awaiting orders to engage.*

*Not sure how I'm able to hear you guys’ radio transmissions,* Caldoric's voice suddenly cut in, amongst distant explosions, *but I say strike while the iron’s hot! Fill our quarry’s souls with dread, and their bodies with lead! Hyaaaaaaa--!* His voice then cut off mid yell.

*You hear him, let’s engage!* Vik said. Sebaste sighed before he said to the Element bearers, “Alright ladies, let’s kick some bad guy butt!” With a roar, the engine gunned to life and the Scorpion rumbled forward. Its turret turned to target a large mixed group of Shardlings and Imps before a massive BOOM emanated from the single 108 mm cannon, and a sizable chunk was instantly vaporized by the blast. There was a clang as the shell casing ejected from the back of the turret and clattered onto the ground behind it.

“Hey, watch it with that thing!” Rainbow said, as she hovered over to the cockpit. “Some of them are still ponies, remember? I mean, we could do with a few less of the snobby nobles, but that’s no way to go about it!”

“I have my scanners set to target the Shardlings that aren't ponies, so don't get your tail in a twist!” Sebaste retorted. There was a second boom in the distance as Viktor’s tank advanced with the Toa. A second later, more Imps were vaporized by the blast caused by the tank shell.

*Bullseye!* Viktor shouted. *Alright guys, pick your targets with ‘Imp’unity!* There were groans heard on Vik’s end as a few of the Toa caught the pun.

Sebaste chuckled before the built in machine gun next to the main cannon opened fire and mowed down a few more imps. “Okay guys… CHARGE!” He roared before the tank vanished and a Mantis Walker replaced it. But what caught the eyes of the mares was the glow coming from the barrel of the weapon on its left arm and the orange and blue color scheme.

Twilight charged up her horn for a particularly powerful blast, ready to support him, with Rarity not far behind.

“For the Emperor and the UNSC! FOR EQUESTRIA!” The Spartan yelled as the Gauss Repeater opened fire, the slugs flying at hypersonic speeds. Alex summoned a Missile Launcher that had a red and white color scheme and when she pulled the trigger, a single Missile fired before four more shot out of the projectile, and caused untold mayhem among the enemy ranks.

*Now that's what I call a High Five!* Viktor radioed. Alex groaned at the pun.

*Really Vik? You had to make a joke about the weapon?* She asked.

*Cut the chatter, you two. We still need to deal with these mooks.* Sebaste said as he caused the Mantis to stomp its foot and sending a few Shardlings flying from the shockwave. The cockpit then swiveled and from the weapon on the right arm, six missiles screamed out before the warheads spat out multiple munitions before they impacted, saturating the area in a massive conflagration of ordinance that wiped out a good majority of the enemy forces. Alex smirked at the dumbfounded looks on the six mares faces.

Just then, as they began to close in on the Shardling army, a heavily-armored silver and black figure came stomping across their field of view. It had its left arm raised, and a device mounted on it was firing what appeared to be 12-inch wide balls of light back the way it came. The four-meter-tall being, who they soon recognized to be Caldoric in some form of mechatronic armor, was soon followed by several mutant Shardlings of various shapes and sizes.

“Fucking die already, Makuta-spawn!” He cried. With a brief flash, the armor’s lower left arm and the device mounted on it glowed and changed into a long, blunt-nosed device, which fired off some form of rocket at his pursuers. The resulting explosion took out two or three of the monstrosities, and damaged a few more, but there were still others coming his way.

++ Oy, get back here you blasted scions of Slannesh! ++ Sebastian's voice yelled behind the creatures before a Shardling was incinerated by a blast of heat. Two more suffered the same fate before the Astartes-turned-Dreadnought charged in, his Assault Cannon having switched to a twin barreled gun that fired a blast of heat hot enough to melt metal.

Caldoric, for his part, turned to face another mutant 'ling that had tried to sneak around and flank him, and thrust his right arm forward with a punching motion. The forearm of the suit seemed to fragment, revealing a complex extension mechanism that landed the attempted punch directly between the eyes of the monster… from more than 20 feet away. The heavily stunned abomination was thusly sent flying over a nearby roof, disappearing from sight.

Returning his attention to the main crowd, which had been thinned slightly through the combined efforts of the other heroes, the right arm of Caldoric's armor glowed. Seconds later, it had switched to a normal-looking hand, holding a giant sword that looked like an explosion of lightning and flattened crystals that had been frozen in time, and subsequently plated in gold. He gave it a swing, embedding the tip in the ground, and a storm of lightning-laced fire swept down the road, engulfing the crystalline calamities.

++ I cast FIST! ++ Sebastian growled before he smashed his power fist into another Shardling and blasting another with a gout of flame from the heavy flamer that had replaced the Combi-Bolter inside his palm. ++ Burn in hell! ++

“What do you think this is?” Caldoric demanded, momentarily turning to look at his fellow armored behemoth. “D&D or something? C’mon, let’s get some real trash-talk going!” He was then pounced on by another of the monsters, which sent the two rolling down the street. Caldoric came out on top, his right arm having returned to the clawed punching configuration and raised to strike.

“Go to sleep, go to sleep, go to sleep, GO TO SLEEP…!” Caldoric told the monster as he hammered its face several times in quick succession. Unfortunately, the creature's face had become too concave to successfully comply by the time he stopped.

++ Hey, not my fault I heard that Text to Speech meme so many times! Besides, if you want to talk trash, tell it to these guys! ++ Sebastian retorted as he tossed an Imp into a nearby trash bin, which spontaneously caught fire.

“Gah, why did I have to be so careless with those Kanoka disks?” Caldoric roared at no-one in particular, as a final mutant latched onto his back. “Note to self, never go slinging 'Reconstitute at Random’ disks around without proper foresight!” He then reached over his shoulder with his left arm, and fired off another rocket in his aggressor’s face.

“No, Spike!” Twilight suddenly cried, catching everyone's attention. As they turned to look, they found that the brute Caldoric had punched over the rooftops not a minute before had shown up again, and was holding the young Drake by three of his spines.

«If you don’t surrender immediately,» it said, it’s mouths moving unsettlingly as it related Chrystalla's voice from wherever she was, «then this little lizard will be the first to die! Meet me in the city center in five minutes, or…!» The creature didn't get much farther, because Spike managed to turn his head just right, and spat a massive gout of emerald flame that left behind little more than a charred pile of crystals. Twilight gently caught him with her magic as he fell, easing his descent before clutching him tightly to her barrel.

“So she wants us to meet her in the city center… that has the word ‘trap’ written all over it.” Alex said as Viktor ran up to them.

“Shiny! Then let’s spring the trap,” Caldoric said simply, dismissing the armor and landing heavily on his feet as the Toa Mata rounded the corner behind their Spartan chaperone.

“I simply must agree,” Rarity said, trying to comfort the shell-shocked Spike, “nopony threatens my little Spikey-wikey and gets away with it!” There was a noticeable smile of appreciation from the young dragon as she said this.

“Yeah, 's time somepony put that overgrown salt lick down fer good!” Agreed Applejack, stamping her hoof.

Sebastian stomped over, but as he did so, his form began to shift back to his power armored form. As he completed his shifting, he suddenly stumbled, falling to one knee. “Gah… forgot how much of a drain becoming a Dreadnought has on me…” He said in an exhausted tone. He grunted as he slowly stood up. “Seb, I think we can pull off a ‘Flight of the Valkyrie’ attack now.” Sebaste nodded before turning to the others.

“Hope none of you guys are prone to airsickness, because we're about to take to the skies.” He said as a single massive aircraft armed to the teeth appeared next to Sebastian, with missiles everywhere, two gun turrets on both the front and the wings, two wing-mounted laser cannons, and a single cannon on the back. It was also the same color as the Astartes and on either side of the vehicle was a symbol of a winged sword.

“I’m so sorry,” Caldoric said, chuckling a little, “but, not to offend, that looks like a brick with wings. Can it actually fly, or does it just… fall with style?”

“I hate to agree,” Pohatu added, “but even the bulkiest of statues made by Hafu, a master carver in my village of Po-Koro, would be more aerodynamic than this… transport.”

“Hey, don't disrespect the Thunderhawk! This is one of the most heavily armored dropships in the Space Marine arsenal, hell, it’s a tough nut to crack! And for your information, it does fly.” Sebastian said in a offended tone. He then smirked under his helmet. “And it's capable of carrying up to 30 passengers. So imagine 30 of me charging out from this, guns blazing.”

“Thirty robo-Hulks, eh? Sounds like something you wouldn't see everyday…” Caldoric snarked. “Shotgun, by the way. Now, let’s go.”

“Astartes, not the bloody Hulkbuster!” Sebastian muttered as the front troop bay door opened with a hiss of hydraulics. “Seriously, how no one in the multiverse besides Ahriman and his gang knows about Warhammer 40,000 is beyond me…” With a shake of his head, he walked into the Thunderhawk, muttering under his breath.

Caldoric smacked his fist into his open palm as he made to sit in the co-pilot’s seat in the cockpit. “Warhammer 40K! That’s what it was called! I could never remember the name of that particular game… I was more into D&D, myself, though I never played either of them.”

“Glad you’ve heard of it, I used to play it a lot back before I got Displaced. Now I'm stuck as an actual Adeptus Astartes, or as they were called, Space Marines.” Sebastian said. “It's… kinda hard to get used to having the secondary heart and the other stuff that these guys had.” Looking out the cockpit window, he saw that both Sebaste and Viktor had gone with Hornet gunships and were already in the air, the VTOL engines keeping both aircraft in the air.

“Oh, you think having two hearts is weird, mister Timelord?” Caldoric asked, leaning back in the chair. “Imagine trying to sleep, but every time you move, you’re jolted back to wakefulness by the motors and servos in your own body. Last night wasn't a fun first experience, let me tell you. And then, when I woke up this morning, I found myself as a human again… for about ten seconds. Well, mostly human. Freaked me the hell out.”

“Wait, you mean you turned back into your original human body before changing back into a Toa? Huh…. That is odd.” The Astartes then flipped a few switches before the whine of the engines could be heard. “Alright, everyone strap in, and brace yourselves…” He warned. “We’re taking off in 10…” He began to count down.

Caldoric did his best to figure out how the various belts and buckles of the seat were supposed to work, before giving up entirely and just tying them together.

“3...2...1…” The countdown finished, Sebastian threw the throttle forward and the Thunderhawk blasted into the sky, engines (and Caldoric) screaming. He then heard startled yelps from the others in the troop bay at the sudden acceleration. He pressed a single button and activated the comlink. “Everyone alright?” The Astartes asked as he slowed the gunship so that Sebaste and Viktor could catch up and escort the massive aircraft to their destination. As he did so, he readied the weapon systems, and a rattle was heard as the autoloaders on the heavy bolters loaded mass reactive shells and a clang as the massive cannon on the back of the Thunderhawk primed a single massive shell.

There were various exclamations along the lines of “sweet Celestia!” and “Mata Nui!” but everyone seemed to be ok. Caldoric, though, was sunk several inches into the chair he was occupying.

“You alright there Caldoric?” Sebastian asked, looking at the Human-turned-Toa.

“I…” Caldoric's expression somehow managed to convey just how startled and unsettled he had been by the sudden motion. “I wasn't expecting to jump halfway to lightspeed just then…” He finished.

Sebastian snorted. “This thing's capable of going into space, so it needs those powerful engines to punch through the atmosphere. And you’ll get a taste of how much firepower this thing packs soon.” He said, an amused look hidden under his helmet. “There's a reason why the Astartes had better weaponry than say, an Imperial Guard. They're literally genetically enhanced super soldiers.”

“Well, if those weapons are half as loud as this tub is fast,” Caldoric said, eye twitching as he looked out the front windshield, “then I'm about to go deaf in two seconds, because we got company!” He then pointed toward the large swarm of Shardlings that were coming up towards them in midair.

“Pfft, target practice..” Sebastian chuckled before the four twin linked heavy bolters opened fire with a muffled roar, 8 streams of mass reactive death smashing into the swarm, assisted by machine gun fire from the two Hornets. Two lances of light then streaked from the sides of the Thunderhawk and cut a line through the swarm, their bodies cauterized by the searing beams.

Once the carnage was complete, and the few remaining survivors had fled the way they'd come, Caldoric spoke up. “Remind me not to make you guys mad,” he said. “Though I’m pretty sure we’re gonna find more than a few dead ponies when we get through this… or if. If is good.”

“The only ones that would tick us off would be those that would harm innocent lives. So you don't have anything to fear from us.” the Astartes replied. “But I’ve seen Seb get angry before… and the last guy who got him mad was lucky he didn't kill him outright.”

“Are we going to hover here all day, or are we going to take out this Chrystalla character?” Tahu demanded, from the cargo hold.

“Hey, chill, hot head. We’re arriving right now.” Sebastian retorted as he brought the gunship to land, Sebaste and Viktor staying in the air. With a soft thump, the Thunderhawk landed, the landing gear taking the impact. Getting up, Sebastian summoned a weapon that Caldoric had never seen before: it was a bolter that had what looked like an energy coil on the top and two barrels, the bottom one glowing with energy. “Right, let's see what Chrystalla has to say, but don't attack unless she engages first. So for the love of Dorn, please tell Tahu to keep a lid on his temper.”

“I heard that!” Came the reply. “You left the voice boxy thing on!”

The Astartes facepalmed before switching the comlink off. “I'm never gonna get used to meeting actual characters from other series, and the only other Bionicle Displaced I’ve encountered was a Makuta Teridax…” he muttered.

“Dear Lord,” Caldoric said, as he struggled with getting the straps untied. “He can hop dimensions? That sure as fuck complicates things… and I don't think I'm ever getting out of this chair either.”

“What? No,no,no,no! Different Makuta! He’s not the one from the Bionicle universe!” Sebastian said, as he pulled out a combat knife. “Hold still for a sec…”

“Eep!” Said Caldoric, pulling away slightly. With a precise slash, Sebastian cut through the knot, barely scratching the Toa's armor in the process. “You know…” Caldoric began, shakily, as he stood up from the chair, “in hindsight, I probably could've just used my mask… sorry about the seat. Let’s go.”

“Hey, power to summon any Space Marine vehicle remember? That seat will be good as new the next time I summon this bad boy.” Sebastian chuckled as the two of them climbed down to meet with the others at the troop bay door. Both Alex and Rainblade were standing to the side, waiting for Sebastian.

“Alright,” Caldoric nervously addressed the 14 other heroes in the bay, “los gehts, and all that, I guess.”

The ramp lowered with a hiss, and the group walked out, weapons relaxed, but at the ready.

“Ah,” came Chrystalla's voice as they came into her line of view, “so you actually did come to surrender. We didn't think you had it in you. And you’ve brought us such mighty ships to swell our forces, too… how quaint.”

“Actually, we came for your surrender.” Sebastian retorted. “This isn't a battle you can win, Chrysalis.”

“Yeah, and that’s not the only point you got wrong,” Caldoric added, as the giant Thunderhawk vanished, “we have a saying back on Earth: ‘beware of Spartans Bearing gifts,’ right?”

Sebastian nodded before he looked at the Queen. “You've already had a taste of what my friends and I are capable of. And that was just us going easy on you. We have more powerful weapons and vehicles that can reduce your entire army to ashes in just seconds.” He growled.

“I ain't even touched the Homestuck stuff yet, either,” Caldoric added, holding up the ring with four alabaster orbs from before, “because I theoretically could level at least this city with just this ring, assuming it works.”

“An’ Ah’ll say ya got yersel’ a beatin’ comin’ yer way,” Applejack added.

Chrystalla just laughed. “Oh, we almost hoped you’d say that. Of course, we also planned for you to come and start making threats, it’s so typical of you hero types. Which is why we aren't really here at all…!” And with that, she vanished in a flash of green light as Caldoric lunged forward to try and stop her. “Enjoy this in our stead, however,” her voice echoed, as the lone Toa backed off and two other Equestrian figures appeared in Crystalla’s place: Nightmare Moon, and her fiery-maned sister.

“Oh bugger me with a plasma gun….” Sebastian groaned. “Seb… we need some backup here!” He voxed.

*On it, Vik, light em up!* Both Hornets opened fire with both weapon systems, a storm of bullets and missiles streaking towards the two princesses. With barely a glimmer of energy on each of their respective horns, the twin Alicorn nightmares erected reactive partial bubble shields, which appeared only where they were needed to intercept an incoming projectile and annihilate it.

“Such control, such power…!” Twilight remarked, fearfully. “Even Celestia couldn't normally do that on her best day! What…?”

“Then allow me to introduce you to her dark side: Solar Flare, or Nightmare Star, as she dubbed by the fans on my world…” Caldoric replied, gesturing at the fallen Celestia.

*Okay, that didn't work… Vik, desummon your Hornet, we’re engaging on foot!* Both Hornets suddenly vanished, causing both Spartans to fall, only for the thrusters on their armor to arrest their flight. They both executed a combat roll as they landed, assault rifles in hand.

“Gali, Kopaka! Remember your visions! You’ll know what to do!” Caldoric cried, readying himself to face the threat. “Together we stand, but united we soar! Three shall become Wairuha, and walk the path of wisdom! Three shall become Akamai, and walk the path of the warrior! Only by uniting will the Toa find the strength to triumph!”

“Meanwhile, the Spartans play tag with Solar Flare and Nightmare Moon!” Sebaste yelled as he dodged a blast from Nightmare Moon. “Gah, next time I see whoever came up with the Nightmare version of Celestia, I'm gonna send them through a wall!”

“Ooh, ooh! I love tag!” Pinkie exclaimed, effortlessly keeping away from the thaumic bursts and beams of the dark duo. Seconds later, she popped up next to Nightmare Moon and booped her on the nose with a forehoof. “Tag, you’re it!”

“I thought it was supposed to be a semi-canon idea, with everyone having a Nightmare side!” Caldoric retorted to Sebaste, as he vainly tried to get close enough to land a blow. “So blame Faust for that!”

“Hey Nightmare, what has wings, a horn and is black and blue?” Viktor's voice asked from behind Nightmare Moon, but he was nowhere to be seen.

There were two flashes of light from where the Toa Mata were standing, and suddenly a new voice cut through the chatter.

“Ah, it’s good to be back!” One of the two new giant biomechanical figures exclaimed. “How 'bout you, Wairuha?”

The other figure shrugged and chuckled. “I’m not so sure I'd define it as 'good’ that we were needed again so soon, Akamai…”

“Dear Celestia!” Rarity exclaimed, momentarily distracted.

“Vik, whatever you have planned, now's a good time!” Sebastian grunted as he ducked a blast from Solar Flare. Nightmare Moon suddenly flew into the side of a building while Solar Flare was sent sliding as Viktor appeared from thin air, a Gravity Hammer in his hands. “Sorry, didn't see you there!” The Spartan snarked.

“Hold, little ones,” Wairuha said, “my brother and I can take it from here. The rest of you should worry about the mass of foes around us.”

“Though the largest of you warriors and the golden-domed one are welcome to stay.” Akamai suggested.

“If it’s alright with you, I’d rather have my whole team with me.” Sebaste said. “Rainblade, help the girls!”

“You got it Seb!” Rainblade saluted and flew off to where the Mane Six were fighting. Alex walked up, her sword drawn and a magnum in her left hand, while Sebastian had summoned the pair of lightning claws he had fought with in the castle. Viktor appeared next to them after having used his active Camo to retreat, his Gravity Hammer in his hands while Sebaste had gone for dual energy swords.

“Hey, toss me one of those, will ya?” Caldoric asked of Sebaste. “I’ve always wanted to use one with a Lightsaber…”

“Don't you already have one?” Viktor asked.

“Everything vanished when I summoned you!”

Rolling his eyes, Sebaste tossed one of the energy swords to Caldoric, summoning a Spiker to replace it. As he did so, a single song began blaring from Viktor's external speakers.

Caldoric caught the blade, its energy turning from bluish-purple to a lime green as he drew a lightsaber. “Thanks man, and good luck. Shit’s 'bout to get real with those two around!” He said, before he rushed off to help the Elements.

Sebaste chuckled before he looked at the two princesses-turned-Nightmares. “Okay, Caldoric said they're being controlled by that armor they're wearing. Remove that, they go back to normal.” His eyes narrowed, as the two Toa Kaita engaged the fallen sovereign sisters. “I'm so gonna make Chrysalis and Sombra regret doing this to the ponies…..” With a roar, the four charged, their battle cry ringing through the air: “For the Emperor and the UNSC! FOR EQUESTRIA!”

“Blood for the blood god!” they heard Caldoric's distant voice answer, unhelpfully.

The two Kaita, aided by the Spartans and Astartes, were a worthy match for the two dark Alicorns, and this time, the battle raged on more furiously than ever. Nothing less than victory would satisfy these proud warriors.

Dodging between the two Kaita, Sebaste fired a burst from his Spiker, the iron spikes smashing into Solar Flare’s armor, causing her to turn and leave herself open to a strike from Viktor's hammer, sending her flying towards Akamai. The armored titan, for his part, delivered an airborne roundhouse kick that sent her flying through a building.

“What, you scurry away like a tiny Hoto bug?” He taunted her, shaking his sword in her direction and then mimicked the delivery of several powerful blows with his fists.

“Do not taunt them, Akamai,” Wairuha warned his brother, as he dueled the younger of the two sisters. “Remember, that they are unwilling servants of darkness. We should finish this quickly.”

“Agreed.” Sebastian said as he blindsided Nightmare Moon, delivering powerful slashes with his weapons, before his backpack changed into a jump pack, and he leapt into the air as a blast of arcane energy from Alex smashed into the moon goddess, sending her skidding before Sebastian slammed into her as his jump arc intercepted her.

Showing a remarkable dexterity for a being of her general build, Nightmare Moon quickly recovered, and then leapt an impressive distance straight at the foe she deemed most dangerous: Wairuha. She delivered a mighty flying kick with her hind legs.

Despite his immense strength, the strike sent Wairuha staggering back a few steps as she enclosed him in her telekinetic grip. Using all his might, he barely managed to rip through the thaumic envelope, and then sent her flying into a wall with a blow from his shield.

“Get ready, they're gonna be very ticked off…” Sebaste warned. No sooner had the words left his mouth, than Nightmare Star blasted apart the building she's been knocked through, and slammed into Akamai, sending them both back several meters along the square as she summoned multiple spectral halberds to strike him with. Nightmare Moon, however, slowly began advancing on Wairuha once more, several stellar swords appearing around her, which then entered into a hypnotic weaving dance.

“I don't know why you have chosen to oppose us, ancient ones,” the fallen guardian of the night said, “but for your treachery, you shall pay.”

Turning towards her once more, and raising an eyebrow, Wairuha sucked in a deep breath, feeling his powers -- of ice, water, and wind -- expand and merge within him. A moment later, he let it out in her direction, and a raging blizzard exploded around them all, encompassing the square, then the city, and finally the mountain itself.

“Brrrr, who turned on the cold?!” Viktor asked. Alex gasped as the abysmal temperatures started to freeze the gears in her prosthetic arm.

“Shit! Wairuha, you big idiot, your blizzard just handicapped Alex! The gears in her arm can't withstand the freezing temperatures!” Sebaste snapped as he used his thrusters to slam into Nightmare Moon and sending her tumbling into a rock wall.

“Then allow me to turn up the heat! Head’s up!” Akamai said, as the ground beneath them began to rumble: he, too, had begun to use his combined powers. A giant crater exploded where the fountain had once stood, spraying stone, earth, and lava in every direction. Soon, another appeared elsewhere in the square, and another, more and more of them erupting into existence throughout the area and driving the two sisters together, finally encircling them in a moat of lava. They couldn't safely take to the air, for fear of being hit with chunks of flaming stone: they were trapped.

Wairuha focused his energy into the blizzard, bending it to his will, controlling it. He concentrated with every fiber of his being, everything he had -- logic, instinct, and impulse, guiding him all at once. Soon, he had managed to compress the might of the massive storm into a single, narrow beam of pure, cold energy.

He turned it towards the two sisters, who in turn fired their own beams of energy, meeting his just shy of the moat. The very air around the longer beam crackled with frost, as the sister's power was slowly pushed back. With a flash, Solar Flare vanished, leaving her sister to fend for herself, as the beam washed over her, freezing the younger sister in a huge chunk of ice. The elder sister reappeared elsewhere in the square, only to be tackled by Akamai.

“Well that's one way of getting your enemies to chill…” Viktor joked.

Suddenly, Nightmare Star blasted a gout of fire from her mouth, straight into her aggressor’s golden-masked face. It did little more than annoy him, however, as he tightened his grip on her windpipe ever so slightly. “She’s wiley, this one.” He stated.

“Hold her still, brother!” Wairuha cried, as he slowly, laboriously turned the beam in the fallen Alicorn's direction. Akamai moved just in time to avoid being frozen in place with her, and soon, an uneasy peace had settled over the courtyard. Fighting could still be heard throughout the city as the blizzard slowly dissipated, indicating the rescued ponies from the castle had joined in the fight as best they could.

“Well, that was a fun warm-up, what’s next?” Asked Akamai, stretching his shoulder.

“I’ll get the armor off Luna. Sasha, you get Celestia’s armor off.” Sebaste ordered as he leapt over the moat and landed in front of Nightmare Moon's frozen form. Using his energy sword, he carved an opening large enough to remove the armor from Luna.

Being adapted to the cold of space, she put up a little bit of a fight as they tried to remove the armor, but eventually they got it off. Celestia proved far less troublesome, even with her fiery mane starting to melt the ice ever-so-slightly. She mostly just held still and shivered, her coat having taken on a slight blue tint from being in the ice.

Once they had freed both princesses, Wairuha held out his massive hand for the armor. “Give them here,” he said, calmly and politely.

Both the Spartan and Astartes tossed the armor to Wairuha, before heading over to Celestia and Luna.

Wairuha carefully pried the largest crystal from the chestplate of both sets of armor, and handed them to Akamai. He then crushed both sets of armor into one solid lump of metal, and dropped it into the lava moat. Akamai, however, looked at the gems in his hand: one flaming crimson as the desert sun, the other the midnight black of a solar eclipse. “Strange,” he commented, “that something so small could be infused with such evil… some other dark force is at work here.” And with that, he, too, crushed the gems, and scattered their dust into the lava moat.

“Well, it seems that takes care of that,” Wairuha said, brushing off his hands.

“Not quite, brother,” Akamai disagreed, before he bent down and laid a hand against the ground. With a much softer rumble than before, the edges of the lava moat and the various other magma-filled holes that had appeared throughout the city shrunk and closed, like scars healing over. “There,” he said at last.

For now, the square looked normal once again, if you didn't count the shattered fountain, mounds of ice, and occasional snowdrift.

Sebaste meanwhile had stopped in front of the princesses, a symbol appearing on his left shoulder pad. “Are you two okay?” He asked gently.

“Ungh… whaa?” Celestia asked, groggily, her mane now back to its normal pastel-rainbow appearance.

“Did anypony get the number of that haycart?” Luna asked, sitting up and rubbing an eye with a fetlock.

There was a sudden clanking and grinding of gears, almost on a level with the sound effects of a Michael Bay Transformers movie, which drew everyone's attention. Where the two massive Toa Kaita had once stood, there were now two multicolored, biomechanical Dragons, each looking eerily similar to Wairuha and Akamai.

“Princesses, it has been a long time…” the green, blue and white one began, with Wairuha’s voice.

“Yes, perhaps a millennia, if not more,” agreed the red, black, and brown one, sounding like Akamai.

Sebaste gaped under his helmet. “What in Tartarus?! That… that's not even possible!!!” Alex, Viktor and Rainblade also had shocked expressions, while Sebastian chuckled quietly.

“It is good to see you, old friends,” Celestia said, standing up awkwardly, “we thought you and your constituents lost aeons ago, before we found the Elements and went to challenge Discord. What happened?”

“Wait, hold it for a sec!” Viktor interjected. “You mean you encountered the Toa… before they even arrived on Mata Nui?!”

“We are not sure what you mean by 'Toa,’ but if you are referring to the six Elemental Guardians,” Luna said, “then perhaps there has been a misunderstanding. We did not meet them…”

“We created them, as an insurance policy against Discord.” Celestia finished. “But, when we needed them most, they vanished, and we had to find something else.”

“Whoah, wait, what’s going on here?” Caldoric asked, arriving with the Element Bearers, Spike, and a disheveled-looking Lyra. “I thought that they came into being under the eye of the Order of-- um, nevermind…!”

Sebaste chuckled as Rainblade landed next to him. “That would be wise. But it does bring up a question… just how exactly are they able to… shift?” He asked, looking at the two princesses.

“Shift?” Both Princesses asked, looking at each other.

“Perhaps we should show them?” Akamai suggested. His brother nodded.

“They would find out sooner or later,” Wairuha replied. Then, with the same clanking of metal as before, and some Michael Bay-worthy mechanical transforming effects, there they both stood, humanoid once more.

Both princesses backed up several steps with startled sounds escaping them, as Caldoric stood there slack-jawed.

“H-how?” Celestia asked. “We never designed that to happen!”

“Agreed, and I'm sure I saw at least five pieces moving through each other as they did that…” Luna added.

“It’s because they're from an alternate universe.” Sebastian spoke up, the clank of his heavy boots heard as he walked up.

“Uhhhhhh… not exactly,” Akamai said, holding up a finger. “We’ll have to keep this brief, we don't have much time.”

“Indeed, I too feel the Toa within me beginning to seek individuality once more.” Wairuha said. “From our scattered memories, we can tell you this. Both stories are true. You two created these Elemental Guardians ages ago, in this world, and the Toa were created by the Order around the same time, in their world. Something happened, however, when they were finally deployed in that other reality…”

“Yes, perhaps when Teridax caused the Great Cataclysm,” Akamai continued, “or perhaps not. But whatever it was, your Guardians were yanked from this world, and their discorporeal forms latched onto their then-unconscious alternate selves. Or, so we surmise…” Suddenly he began glowing, as did his brother, and they both vanished, replaced by the Toa Mata, who staggered momentarily.

“Wh… what was that?” Tahu asked.

“That was the six of you becoming what we called you back on earth, the 'Toa Kaita’.” Sebaste replied. “Your most powerful form ever.”

“Well, there's always the possibility of a Toa Nui, but that's only hypothetical.” Caldoric added. “Nonetheless, these are the Toa Mata, heroes of the tropical island of Mata Nui.”

“And… who might you be?” Celestia asked. “You look so like them, but… so unlike them at the same time. And these others, they are wholly unfamiliar to us.”

“I am called Caldoric, for the time being.” Caldoric replied. “I kinda summoned these other guys a while back, though I'm not sure how… the smaller ones are Spartans and the big dude is an Asta… Astra…” he struggled to remember the word. “A Space Marine. Sorry.”

“Astartes…” Sebastian corrected. “It's alright. It’s not exactly the easiest thing to pronounce.”

“Yeah, especially since his author has never actually heard it pronounced,” said Pinkie as she bounced by them, her frazzled mane a little scorched, and still bearing a few bouldering embers. “He’s only ever seen it in writing…”

“Oh, come on, enough fourth-wall breaking.” Caldoric demanded. “As much as I hate to play this trope, we’re not fictional characters in some story, as much as I wish that were true right now. Sure, someone somewhere in some backwater reality may be chronicling us, but stop implying we’re not real.”

“Anyways… You mentioned that you had questions for my team and I?” Sebaste asked Caldoric.

“Now’s the best time, ah reckon,” Applejack said, pointing at the skies as cheers rang out through the city. Clouds of Shardlings were seen fleeing the city, retreating for the time being.

“Well, that's convenient…” Twilight said.

Caldoric narrowed his eyes. “I’m a bit suspicious about their sudden retreat, but I'll let it go… for now.” He then turned back to the four visitors he’d called upon back in the castle. “Perhaps we all have a few questions for you guys. My first, however, is this… have you four considered trying to replicate that Halo Forge weapons glitch? The one that makes a weapon have the attributes of something else?” The Toa, princesses, and Elements looked at each other in confusion.

“Not exactly… I have been toying with the idea of doing that, but with the war back home going on… I haven't really been able to test it out.” Sebaste replied.

“Ah. Well, you’re welcome to try here, for as long as you’re willing to stay.” Caldoric said, then paused. “If… it’s ok with the Princesses, I guess…”

“I need to get back to our Equestria… I don’t exactly like leaving it unguarded, and right now, Ponyville is under threat from rebel forces.” Sebaste said. “But I guess I can linger for a bit. Unless… Alex, mind opening a portal?” She nodded before her gauntlet glowed and a vortex opened up in front of the two. Sebaste seemed to concentrate before a hardlight version of himself appeared next to him. “Tell Twilight that me and the others are gonna be awhile.” He said. The hologram nodded before walking through the portal, which closed with a hiss.

“What was that, a Shadow Clone?” Caldoric asked, sitting down and stowing the green energy sword. He had a feeling it was about to be a long story. He was also tired.

“Hardlight copy. It's an ability I’ve had since I was first Displaced, but I didn't use it until…” His tone darkened. “You see, I’ve been Displaced not once, but twice. The first time I had been Displaced, a friend of mine and I fought a group called the New Black Legion, lead by a Displaced named Ahriman. The Equestria we had been living on… was devastated, and we lost both princesses and Applejack. Rainblade was kidnapped by Ahriman's version of Rainbow Dash and became what she looks like now. A few years later, I was sent the Equestria I live in now by a being called a Displacer. But my past is not something I like remembering.” The Spartan sighed. “Next question?”

Caldoric sat there for a moment, taking it all in as Rarity came up to the Spartan and placed a comforting hoof on his shoulder. Caldoric was about to speak, but Lyra beat him to it.

“What’s ‘Displaced’? And where are you five from, exactly?” She asked, eagerly.

“A Displaced, or Dimensionally Misplaced, is a human that's been sent to Equestria as a character from a game, movie, comic book, or any fandom, by either a being called a Void Dweller, or as the four of us found out, a being called the Merchant. You're familiar with the Multiverse theory, right?” He asked Caldoric.

“Pretty much…” The Toa started, before Lyra made a 'Squeee’-ing noise, and fell over from excitement. “So, we’ve been shunted to different versions of Equestria to aid in their defense against various evils, and if we mess up bad enough, we get 're-displaced,’ yes?”

Sebaste sighed. “I was a special case, but yes, there are multiple versions of Equestria, each with its own Displaced. And each Displaced is different, you have some good, and some… I personally wish I could teach them a lesson. We come from one such Equestria. But the way we contact each other is through objects called tokens. That's how you called us over. You basically choose something that relates to you or the character you’ve become, and after saying a phrase, you send it into the Void, or the space between universes.” He explained.

Caldoric nodded. “Sounds… simple enough. Unfortunately, the items that I found kinda, y’know, vanished before you arrived. I think I mentioned that… so, if I need to contact you again, how would I get in contact?”

Sebaste chuckled, before the assault rifle that served as his token appeared in his hands and he tossed it to Caldoric. “Nice thing about this power, you can summon your token at any time. And don't worry about it disappearing on you the next time you call on me or the others.” He said as he took his helmet off, revealing his scarred face.

“It better not,” Caldoric said with a playful smile, “though I was wondering if I could get another one of that whip-blade? There was a type of character in a game I used to play, called 'Maplestory,’ that used a similar type of weapon, and I wanted to see if I could try and… recreate some of the skills they used.”

Alex stepped up and drew her sword, but then a copy of her weapon appeared in her gauntlet. She then embedded the blade into the ground. “It's actually called a snake sword. But I guess a whip-blade is also accurate.” She said as she stepped back. She also took her helmet off, allowing her raven colored hair to whip in the wind.

“I’ll make sure to remember that…” Caldoric said, stepping forward and carefully pulling the sword from the ground.
“Although I've also heard of this type of blade being called a ‘chain sword.’ The more you know…”

Luna finally broke the silence that she and Celestia had been sharing. “Where are you from, exactly? And… how did you come to be here, in our land?”

“It’s kind of hard to explain… the short of it is that we come from a entirely different universe, from a planet called Earth. It's very different from Equestria, being we don't have magic and rely on technology, and that the human race is known for one thing only… war.” Sebaste said, a note of steel in his tone.

“Yup,” Caldoric agreed. “We humans can be rather violent, although I think that’s mostly to do with our genetics. We’re descended from primates, like gorillas and other large Simians. We kinda get it from them. As to how I got here… I came through the mirror, kinda, after it was 're-dialed’ to the Toa’s universe. I can explain later. But we’re all from different points on our home timeline, and from different places on Earth.”

“Anyways, any other questions for me and my team?” Sebaste asked, as Rainblade stood next to him. The Princesses shook their heads, a slight look of worry touching their regal faces. Twilight seemed interested, but refrained from asking anything just yet. Lyra, on the other hand…

“Tell me everything about your history!” She demanded. Caldoric facepalmed.

“Geez, and I thought Twilight was the egghead…” Rainblade remarked with a smirk, shifting her metal wings.

“Oh, she still is,” Rainbow replied, “but she’s toned it down a smidge since everything went down the drain. Especially after her niece, Flurry Heart, was kidnapped…” She looked away awkwardly.

“Believe me, I intend to have Chrystalla and Sombra pay for what they've done. But that's for another time…” Sebaste growled, his eyes turning hard. “Do any of you have anymore questions about the Displaced?” He then asked.

“Um… any jerks I should be wary of, or just avoid in general?” Caldoric asked. “Like, any particular tokens I should or shouldn't use?”

“I would advise caution if you encounter Ahriman. He’s an Astartes like Sasha, but more… corrupted. He usually has a reunite of three, a Khorne Berserker named Khârn, his version of Rainbow, who is a more heavily augmented version of Rainblade, and a Dæmon Princess version of Twilight.” Sebaste warned. “And he’s also a Void Dweller, after he and I had a little… spat in my old Equestria.

“Oh, joy,” Caldoric said, sarcastically. “Got a picture so I know what this Horrorterror-wannabe looks like?”

Sebaste activated the hologram projector on his helmet, and played the most recent encounter with Ahriman. A massive figure with blue and gold armor appeared in front of him, equipped with a staff that carried a gemlike eye between its twin prongs, and a helmet like Sebastian's, though with a different design that bore multiple horns, before it shifted to the same figure, but in much bulkier armor, with both a massive mace and a claw that had what looked to be a twin-barreled gun mounted on top of it. “This is Ahriman, leader of the New Black Legion.”

Lewa gave a low whistle from behind Sebaste, startling him with how silently he’d moved, then spoke. “That’s one nasty-ugly guy. Not even Makuta could love-cherish a face like that.”

“Looks sorta Egyptian in design…” Caldoric muttered, gesturing to the armor. “Though that could just be the color scheme.”

“In a way, it actually is. The Thousand Sons were actually made to look Egyptian in the 40K lore.” Sebastian explained.

“Anyways, some Displaced I do recommend you meet are an Anubis Cruger Displaced, a Spiderman OC of sorts, and a mother/nephew duo that got Displaced as the two main characters from SAO.”

“Ooh, I like that last one.” Caldoric exclaimed, his body language showing that he was starting to fanboy ever so slightly over the idea. “But yeah, that about sums it up for me… any news on if your world’s in danger? I’d hate to keep you too long, cool as you are.”

“One of us can head back. Besides, I need to report to my Celestia and Luna and give them an update.” Sebaste chuckled, before he remembered something. “Oh yes, if you're interested, a guy who got Displaced as Sun Wukong is opening up a school for Displaced to help train them to better control their powers. I'm actually one of the combat trainers there, but there are other classes.”

“Sounds fun, I might just swing by sometime.” Caldoric admitted. “Maybe I'll bring the Toa Mata with, if they're willing… how would I get there?”

“Talk to Sun, he might be able to admit you.” He tossed what looked like a gold coin to him. “This is his Token. Just… be prepared to see a ton of RWBY Displaced there.”

“Well, if that’s all,” Pinkie interjected, “I think it’s time for a 'we-just-kicked-Chrystalla's-flank,-retook-Canterlot,-and-survived’ party! Yeah!”

“Oonnn second thought…!” Caldoric responded, clapping his hands together and looking at his new allies with a nervous smile, “why don't we see if we can find the Crystal Mirror and get it up and running again? Then I can give you lot a tour of Mata Nui--!”

“Ohhhhhhhh, no you don't,” Pinkie said, tackling him, “you’re not getting out of one of my parties, mister grumpy-gills.”

“Help.” Caldoric groaned from the cobbles.

The four humans and Rainblade roared with laughter at what had just happened, soon followed by the others in the small crowd. “Sorry, but once Pinkie starts a party, there's no getting out of it.” Sebaste said as he caught his breath. He then looked at Alex. “Alex, open the portal. I'm heading back.” She nodded and a portal opened up.

Meanwhile, Caldoric used his Mask power and vanished from underneath Pinkie’s friendly pin, reappearing on a nearby roof. “Can’t stop what you can't catch!” He called, and vanished again.

“And you can't outrun what’s already here! It is on!” The party-planner replied, before she, too, disappeared in a blur of pink and a cloud of dust.

Sebaste chuckled before he gave a salute to the remaining Elements, Toa and the Princesses. “It was an honour meeting you all. I hope we see each other soon, and may Faust and Mata Nui protect you all.” He said.

“I agree,” said Celestia, as Luna nodded along, “though I hope our next encounter would be under less… pressing circumstances. Perhaps young Pinkie is right, though: a small party would do wonders to raise everypony’s spirits, and provide some relaxation. You are all welcome to join us, if you wish.”

“I would, but a soldier's work is never done. Especially one that's the leader of the Royal Guard reserves back in my Equestria.” Sebaste chuckled before he gave a nod to his companions. “You four have fun, you honestly deserve it.” He then walked through the portal and vanished, the portal closing after him with a hiss.

Seconds later, Caldoric reappeared in the courtyard, said “Catch!” and tossed several identical items at the three before vanishing again, with Pinkie appearing hot on his trail. As they caught the small trinkets, they each heard his voice as if he was speaking right in front of them.

”I am Toa Caldoric, Knight of Space. If you need a mountain moved, or an island lifted, then I'm your guy. Merely solve this small logic puzzle and I'll be there… or, if you're in a hurry, chuck it on the ground and call my name. Either way, I'll be there in a flash.”

Taking a closer look at the items they had received, they were revealed to each consist of a bronze Möbius loop bearing several long bumps along it’s length and a tiny cut near one side, and a silvery coin with a cut most of the way through it that allowed it to move somewhat freely around the loop itself.

Soon, everyone had made their way back to the castle, where a party was already in full swing, with Caldoric trussed up and hung from the ceiling like a piñata.

“I have no idea how this happened, honestly,” he said, as the Toa, Elements, Princesses, Rainblade, Spartans and the single Astartes entered the Throne room.

“It's Pinkie, you don't question it.” Viktor and Rainblade said at the same time in a deadpan tone.

“I question everything. How do you think I'm still alive?” Caldoric retorted.

Just then, four small figures burst into the room, three of them panting and scared. The fourth, while mostly composed, gave off a slight air of concern as she adjusted her yellow propeller beanie atop her purple hair.

“Oh no…” Alex whispered.

The three scared young fillies turned to her, gave a shout of shock, and zipped off to hide behind a pillar.

“Well, there goes the CMC, the brave leaders of the Canterlot rebellion,” remarked the fourth filly with a facehoof, whose flank bore an image of a large screw alongside a baseball.

“And that's the second Screwball I’ve met…” Viktor muttered as Alex knelt down near where the CMC were hiding.

“Hey, it’s alright.” She said gently, “There aren't anymore Shardlings to hurt you three.”

“Ah’m more concerned about you…” Applebloom said, her voice shaky as she backed away a bit.

“Applebloom!” Came Applejack's excited and relieved voice.



In a flash, Rarity, Rainbow, and Applejack were there, comforting their respective charges and holding them so tight it looked like they’d never let go again.

Alex gave a sad smile as she remembered doing the same thing with her parents whenever she had gotten scared. A stray tear streaked her left cheek as she watched.

The party lasted long into the night, with the Displaced humans occasionally offering up music to the DJ, Vinyl Scratch, who had also survived the fight. Caldoric’s “music privileges” were revoked by Pinkie, however, after the third or fourth time he tried to use it as an opportunity to escape. Didn't stop him from continuing to try, though.

The next morning, after everyone had gotten caught up and the visiting Displaced had almost finished saying their goodbyes, they were approached by a five-foot-two human wearing grey cargo pants and a white long-sleeved T-shirt under a short-sleeved black one. His long, dirty-blonde hair was tied back in a single braid, and he had a single piercing in his right ear. He also had some robotic elements to him, but otherwise looked normal.

“Caldoric?! Dang, you weren't kidding!” Sebastian said, his own armor having vanished thanks to the spell that the Twilight of his Equestria had put on it, revealing the shirt and jeans underneath. The other two were also out of their armor and, like Sebastian, were in the clothes that they had worn underneath the armor.

“Yeah, but it gets cold when I'm like this…” replied Caldoric. “At least, it’s been cold the last two mornings, so that's nothing to go on… and I'm rambling. I wanted to give you something.” He then held out four identical cubes, each one having something different sticking out of each side.

“They're called ‘Fidget Cubes,’ I thought you might find them useful if you get bored or whatever… or need to contact me without summoning me with my Token. They’re the ‘gamer’ color scheme.” He then took one and fiddled with it a bit, demonstrating his next point. “Just enter that old cheat code: up, up, down, down, left, right, left, right, A, B, A, B, start.” He mimicked the sequence on the cube, using first the joystick, then two of five buttons on one side, then clicking the lone ball bearing on a third. He then passed them to the others.

Sebastian nodded as he took his, before he summoned the single sword that served as his token, Viktor doing the same. “We never got to hand you the last two tokens that’ll summon us. If you ever need our help or Seb’s, don't be afraid to call us. And as a bonus…” He pulled out what looked like a floating blue crystal. “Seb forgot to mention the two that have this token. They’re old friends of mine that got sent to their Equestria as characters from a game called Brave Frontier. But don't underestimate them, they’re quite nasty when their friends get threatened.”They're known as the Blade Queen and Thunder Phoenix.” He tossed the crystal to Caldoric. “Who knows, you guys might encounter each other sometime soon.”

“I’ll keep that in mind, then. But, one last thing...” said Caldoric, catching it. He then held out his hands, and four silvery metal rods appeared in his grasp, one of them thicker and longer than the others. “You might have need of these. They’re lightsabers, except for the big one, which is technically a light club, and they should adopt a hilt design, blade style, and blade color that suits you upon the first activation… I had Twilight's help on making them last night, so use them well. Now… group photo, for the memories?”

The four nodded, Alex giving the Toa a small grin.

And so, Caldoric pulled out his phone and took a selfie-style picture of the five of them, four mostly-humans and a cyber-pegasus, then took another with everyone in their armor.

“It’s been fun having you guys,” Caldoric said, “and I hope you can visit soon. Just remember…” He then slipped into a song from “The Road to El Dorado” for a moment.

♪Friends never say goodbye… never say, goodbye…!♪

“...that, and if that ‘hairy-man’ guy shows up again, you’ve got a potential God-Tier Space player on your side.” Caldoric then hitched a thumb at himself.

Sebastian smirked. “We’ll see. Hope to see you at Beacon!” He said as Alex opened a portal. With a wave, he walked through the portal.

“See ya then!” Caldoric called. “Also, if you run across a young woman dressed like someone from Ranger’s Apprentice and calling herself ‘Lucid’ or ‘the Mage of Breath,’ tell her that her brother’s looking for her! I don't know if she was Displaced or not, so keep an eye out for me!”

Alex frowned as Viktor and Rainblade walked through the portal. “Seb mentioned that Displaced that are family or friends are usually sent to the same Equestria… so she may be in this universe. But we’ll keep an eye out all the same.” She gave a small wave. “See you guys then!” She then walked through and with a hiss, the portal closed.

Caldoric gave a wan smile and crossed his arms as he stared at where the portal had been. He had a feeling it was going to be a long and hard time before things started looking up for him, but it was easier to bear now he knew he wasn't alone in being Displaced. Now, to find that mirror, and see if he couldn't get it up and running again…

With the Spartans...

The four burst out of the portal, only to be confronted by a scene of chaos. Rainbow and Rarity were lying on the floor unconscious, and what looked like electricity arced through their armor. Nearby, Pinkie and Applejack were in a similar state. Fluttershy was the only one that had managed to survive unscathed, while Twilight laid next to her, blade slashes scoring her armor and a few deep wounds on her unarmored parts. She shakily looked up as the four ran up. “Twilight, what the hell happened?!” Sebastian asked, looking around. “And where’s Nyx?”

“She's -nnng- in her room. As for what happened… while you guys were gone, a new human suddenly appeared in the castle, and it had armor like yours, but instead of shoulder pads, it had rings on its arms and its helmet was more ornate. When Sebaste asked who it was, it suddenly pulled out a gun and opened fire on us… it also shot lightning and used what looked like claws for close combat. All I know now is that Sebaste went after it, but he’s badly wounded after the two clashed while they were in here.” Twilight winced as Fluttershy wrapped a bandage around one of her wounds.

Sebastian frowned. “Did this human look like he or she was panicking?”

Twilight blinked. “Yes, actually… it did look like it was trying to get away.”

“And whoever that was just got away.” Sebaste's voice came from the doorway. “It's like he or she vanished…” The Spartan limped in, and Rainblade gasped. He had ruptures on his armor that looked like claw marks, and blood leaked out from them. There were also scorch marks that showed where he had been hit by lightning. He took a single step and collapsed. Rainblade quickly flew over to him while Alex ran over and began healing him.

'Whoever just showed up managed to rupture a high tech armor system… just who is this guy?’ Viktor thought.

Meanwhile, in a secluded corner of Ponyville, an armored figure landed gracefully behind a building and looked around, before removing its helmet to reveal a feminine face. 'Great, trapped in some sort of whacko pony world and nearly got killed by a Spartan… At least those martial art moves came in handy…’ she thought. 'But… how exactly did I even get here? All I remember was picking up those Venka claws from that Merchant at Tennocon, and next thing I know, I'm in some kind of room! I just hope that Alex and Vik are okay…’ Teresa thought, her thoughts going to her two younger siblings. '...and I need to figure out what exactly is happening here…’

Author's Note:

Caldoric: Holy crap, that was fun! Massive thanks to Company Master Sebaste for agreeing to cross stories with me! I definitely hope to do it again some time. And now, the protagonist has a functioning Token out in the Æther for folks to find. Or, sorry, the Void. Same diff. Leave a PM if you wish to leave a mark on my tale, or have me leave a mark on yours, and go check out Sebaste's story, it's actually pretty good!

Sebaste: And that is the end of this crossover!

I had a great time with Caldoric with writing this chapter, and I look forward to working with him again in the future.

And we have a new character, and a female Tenno at that!

Up next: To be announced

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