• Published 19th Dec 2016
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The Pieces Lie Where They Fell - Evilhumour

A thousand years after the death of Mane Six, a new generation of Bearers are chosen.

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Chapter Twelve: Xvital

Chapter Twelve


Xvital tossed the near empty bag back to Night and did her best to calm herself before approaching the gatehouse. It looked like it hadn’t seen a coin in years; the bricks of the main building were very chipped and cracked, the wooden gate seemed rotten with the metal bars covered with rust and there were no guards patrolling on the walls. They might even get lucky with having the entire gatehouse being abandoned!

Although, she would have to return Night’s money if that was the case…

Walking up to the door to the antechamber, she bit her lip and reached out to knock on it when she stopped and blessed her amazing luck.

What she saw made her smile; there was someone sleeping in there with the door opened just enough for the guard to look to see outside if he was awake.

“Oh this is too easy,” Xvital chuckled as she held the door steady with her left hand and brought her right and tail hand crashing into the door, causing the guard to jump out of his chair, eyes darting every which way as he levitated his sword and started to swing it around. She would have been more worried if he had taken it out of the sheath…

“Who’s there?!” he shouted, trying to fix his helmet and straighten his armour at the same time.

“Whoa whoa whoa, easy there buddy,” Xvital said with a concerned tone. “There’s no fire,” she bit back an annoyed growl when Wind Breaker started to cough again. “Well, there’s one fire but it’s taken care of. We, me and my....” the word escaped Xvital with her floundering until she remembered what Rex had said. “Associates, we want to get to the Middle.”

“Look missy, you might not know this but if there’s a fire, then I need to check in if I have to keep the Upper-Middle-Second-Cadenza-To-Magi-Gate open or not.” He let out a huff and shook his head as he made his way over to the desk that held the notebooks that were attached to the main military system that gave out the daily orders.

“Wait a moment, Sir...” Xvital moved in front of the guard, reaching out for the small bag of cash she had made from Night’s stash.

“Regal Pants, descendent of the great general Pants who accompanied King Blueblood the Great when he avenged our goddesses by slaying that whore bug creature.”

“Who could have doubted that,” Night said, trotting into the room. “I thought I had heard you Regal; I wondered where you went to.”

“Night you bloody bastard!” Regal exclaimed as he walked over to pull Night into an embrace, with Night clearly hiding an annoyed look on his face. “What is the number one dullest in the entire West doing in this dump?”

“What the ahuitzotl said, we simply want to get to the Middle,” Night said flashing a fanged smile. “And if you could make it so that no one knows we were here, it would be truly grand.”

“I don’t know Night, what’s in it for me?” Regal asked with open greed in his eyes.

“Well for starters, I know that the next city tournament is coming up and the team for the West could use you.”

“As a watercolt, no thanks,” Regal snorted, eyeing his desk again, but Night quickly stepped in front of him.

“What do you want, then?” Night asked sharply, giving a pointed glare that instead of causing the guard to throw them out got the unicorn scheming more.

“Second chair, after you,” Regal said before looking at Xvital and chuckled. “The guy would have a fit if I tried to take his spot.”

“I am right here,” Night hissed. “And I will see what I can do Regal, once I am back at the gym.”

Regal looked at Night and then grinned. “I want you to write a note saying that you’ll give me your sword if you don’t.”

“You greedy little second rate hack,” Night growled, stalking forwards.

Relax Night,” Regal laughed as he shook his head. “It’s not like I’m asking for a date with that mare of yours… although she seems likely to be a fun night.” His snickering was quickly stopped by the sheer murderous look on Night’s face and he paled ever so slightly, a real feat on his white coat. “Of course, I’m sure you’d kill me if I tried that again…”

“Why don’t you just trust my word to have you in the second chair and you will not need to explain how you were assaulted in a dead end guardhouse all by yourself.”

“Yeah, I will go do that,” Regal said, looking every way except at Night or Xvital. She stared at the unicorn before letting out an exasperated grunt.

“Well?” she asked.

“What?” he snapped before looking over at Night and wilted under the glare. “I mean, yes noble visitor?”

With an unamused snort, she rolled her eyes and pointed with her tail hand towards the gate, tossing the coin bag to Night. “Can you open that up?”

“Oh, right,” Regal said, walking over to the portcullis and began to rise it up, eyebrows raising as he noticed all the unusual species walking past. “You’ve got some interesting new... well not that as you’re the king of antisocial.”

“And you are still the prince of incompetency, Regal,” Night fired back, strolling past Xvital. “If you let down the West again, I will see to it that you are trained properly, and I will do it myself.”

Gulping, the unicorn all but pushed her through to the Middle, the iron wall almost slamming onto her tail hand as a result of Regal’s desire to avoid Night’s offer.

They all walked down the main road until they were out of sight of the gatehouse before ducking into the alleyway and letting out a sigh of relief.

“Well that was easy,” Vix-Lei grinned, looking to pat Night on the back.

Xvital was going to do the proper thing and yell at him.

“What the Tartarus were you thinking?” she growled at him, the batpony looking at her with a frown on his face.

“I was dealing with the situation as I knew the stallion and-”

“And that should have been a advertencia para que te callaras y te alejes de aquí ahora que nos va a cazar el gobierno!!”

Everyone looked at her, with Xvital realizing she’d slipped into Burroñeso again.

The minotaur turned to the diamond dog and asked, “What did the kitty cat say?”

“She said it was a red flag and that Night should have remained silent and hidden due to when our foe takes over the government they will be able to deploy the means to chase after us, and it would be prudent to give them as few leads as possible.” He then turned and looked sharply at her. “Además, Xvital, tengo que saber si este mercado negro en el que estas tiene negocios con Dragones Manechurianos ya que estaría muy inconfortable con eso.”

“Que-no!” Xvital shouted, insulted at this line of questioning. “No soy tan estúpido para involucrarme con esas criaturas, Rex.”

“Solo me aseguro,” the diamond dog said with a sigh of relief before noticing that everyone was staring at them. “Sorry, just inquiring something of Xvital, nothing to be overtly concerned with.”

“Right...” Wind Breaker said before turning to face Night. “Still, she was right, it was a very dumb move. I mean what if that Regal guy decides to get back at you and tells his higher ups about us?”

“Because I know how petty Regal is and how much he’d love to strut on a grand stage such as a summit of Canterlots’ best and I know that his attention will be elsewhere shortly. I saw on his desk there was a black message and he only has his father left so he will have to deal with a funeral and managing the transfer of power into being the new Lord of the Pants Family.”

“I guess that’s a lucky break,” Xvital said, biting her lip, looking around this alley they had ducked into. It was still near the wall separating the Upper and Middle but it looked and smelled like a proper alley. Middle ponies might want to be Upper ponies but they dumped their crap like anyone else.

It smelt worse than the deepest part of the Cuanmiztl Kingdom!

Okay, she might be exaggerating just a bit…

“So what’s the plan now?” Wind Breaker asked, tilting his head and blinking his different coloured eyes at her.

“Same as before. We need to get into the Middle proper of this quarter, get some info about the North to see where we can cross over. Then once we get across that river-”

“Canal,” Rex said before clearing his throat. “Once we get to the East, I will be able to provide greater aid as that is where my workshop is and we should be able to get supplies.”

“Correct me if I am wrong, but wouldn’t that be dangerous as this mysterious foe will be chasing us? Isn’t that what you just told me?” Although Night whined, he did bring up a good point.

“Due to the fact that I am not an equine, purchasing my own laboratory required using proxies to ensure a much fairer price,” Rex fixed a glaze on the noble. “It is mine in all but legal recognition… Still have to pay the ruby taxes despite the fact.” He grumbled the last bit, rolling his eyes.
“So that’s how we’ll do things, Nighty,” Vix-Lei chimed, patting him on the back. “So how will we do this; split in teams of three and go out looking for dirt?”

“Yeah,” Xvital said holding out the map, tapping the location of a safe house. “At fourish, we will head there; everyone can see the street?” She looked over her shoulder to see all of them nod in agreement.

“Back street, I assume?” Page asked, cocking an eyebrow.

“Yup,” Xvital rolled up the map and tucked it into her pack. “Vix-Lei, you’re with me; Night, you’re going with Rex and-”

“No,” Night glared at her, stepping closer to her. “I’m going with Page to make sure she is safe.”

“What, you don’t think I could back her up?” Wind growled at the stallion, Xvital facepalming at this idiocy.

“Considering the first incident I have with you is being drunk…” Night drawled out, causing the griffon to puff out his coat as if he was about to leap and attack.

Thankfully, Vix-Lei stepped in. “Whoa there guys, enough of the horn measuring okay? You’re both very pretty and I’m sure the kitty cat had a reason for setting us up like this.”

“Yeah, because I trust Rex to have a clear head but he’ll need someone to give him some clout and frankly Night, you look like you’re about to go off on someone,” Xvital said with Night rolling his eyes with a heavy snort. “Page has a nice enough nature so I’m willing to bet that others will tell her stuff with Wind here acting as a deterrent.”

That wasn’t the real reason; as Xvital didn’t trust Night alone and she didn’t know enough about his relationship with Page to know how well she controlled him. Thus she wanted one of the group that she did trust to keep an eye on him.

“So about this?” Vix-Lei said, twirling her hammer around in a way that let her scoop Night up. With quick movement of her arms and a very high pitch squeak of surprise from the batpony, Vix-Lei decided to push her luck further by ruffling his mane. “Me and Nighty form team one, Rexy and Pagey team numero duo, and you and Windy form the third duo? How does that sound?”

Please put me down...

That got a round of chuckles from everyone but Night. Xvital couldn’t see any real-

“Sounds find to me,” Page said, walking over to the dangling stallion. “I’ll be fine as I do have magic to defend myself, Night.” She then used that magic to beep his nose with the colt letting out another squeak, blushing.

“Okay, if we’re all done being silly,” Xvital said, looking at Vix-Lei who nodded her head and placed Night down who had a scowl plastered across his face. “Let’s get going.”

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