• Published 1st Feb 2017
  • 4,656 Views, 680 Comments

Knights of the Realm - Kinni


Sunset, Trixie and Twilight were chosen as Celestia's apprentices, but they also choose to become Knights, protectors of Equestria. They are prepared for that, but Equestria is probably not prepared for them.

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The Plan Needs Adjustment
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Twilight looked as Sunset took a deep breath. The power obsessed unicorn was volunteering to take care of the situation, and neither of the other two made any move to stop her. There were situations where finesse was required, but that was most definitely not one of them.

"OVERDRIVE!" Sunset shouted.

Her body seemed to explode with a burst of magical power that was so overwhelming, Twilight had to fight not to instinctively take a step backwards, even though she knew she was under no danger from her partner. Then Sunset charged a spell for two entire seconds, time that seemed almost too long considering the steady charging of power of the trap beneath their feet, which already had a considerable amount of mana gathered.

The spell she cast took the form of an arrow of energy that seemed made to be shot out of a ballista. A particularly large ballista created to deal with magically reinforced castle walls.

"Double Magic Enhance: Bunker Buster Blast!" And the arrow grew by a factor of 1.5, but more importantly, the energy it consisted of seemed to deepen and become wilder and denser. The very air seemed to crack and burn around the arrow.

Over the years, Twilight had managed to understand more or less how Sunset's Magic Enhance worked. It was not simply overloading a spell, since it actually changed the very structure of the magic. Instead, Sunset seemed to be able to touch the very concept of enhancement, forcefully making a spell into a better form guided by her own thoughts, since the spells tended to become bigger and more destructive, instead of more focused and easier to control. It bypassed the need for a longer casting time to create a better spell, and the price was a significant power expenditure.

But power was something Sunset had in spades.

All those thoughts passed through Twilight's mind in the instant before the arrow shot at the wall, and were blown away by the sheer impact as it hit. And then the arrow exploded with a deafening sound (their prepared ear protection spells activated themselves) and the whole room trembled, as the effect of the spell annihilated every single one of the wards around them with the transferred force. It was a perfect expression of Sunset's specialty.

But even for her, it would be impossible to charge such a spell quickly without the use of an Overdrive, and that had a price.

Sunset collapsed unconscious.

Twilight and Trixie ran over to her and quickly charged a combined teleportation spell, feeling like the trap was about to release its own spell at them. The three unicorns disappeared from the room.

-

Moments later, the trap room erupted with a massive spike of energy, spreading through every available space, literally frying the rock walls.

Less than ten seconds had passed from the moment the trap activated.

-

Trixie already knew what she was going to see when the teleport concluded, but she still winced at the sight of the ribbon she had given Twilight disintegrating as the magical feedback of the teleportation passed through it, knowing her own ribbon was in the same state, and Sunset's had already been reduced to nothing back at the trap room.

And of course, the spatial disturbance of such a hasty teleportation was pretty much a beacon to their location (which was why they had chosen an open field next to the mine, instead of going directly to the town) which meant Nightmare Moon would be coming right about...

"Intruders, prepare to be destroyed!" And the corrupted alicorn appeared right on cue. Trixie quickly decided on a strategy.

"Hello, Princess Luna!" Trixie cheerfully called out to her "Sorry for killing your avatar! It was nothing personal, okay?"

The enemy blinked, seeming to have been thrown off by this sudden change in the script. Trixie charged a spell, concentrating in being as distracting as possible. Sunset was currently too unconscious to stay in a battlefield, and Twilight was the best suited to take her to safety, which meant the job of keeping the alicorn's attention fell squarely on Trixie's shoulders.

"Perfect Illusion: Sea of Silhouettes!" She shouted, creating an army of illusory replicas of herself, which flew right towards the mind controlled Princess Luna.

The Alicorn screeched and created a globe of darkness around herself with a quick spell, swallowing up the replicas in an instant.

Trixie felt Twilight and Sunset disappearing, and smiled as she charged another spell. She had a solo fight with a corrupted alicorn to deal with, and even though there was no audience, the azure unicorn intended to make it a hell of a show.

-

Ranger Time was startled when the two unicorns appeared right beside her. She was in a depression five miles from the city that the apprentices of Celestia had chosen as a fallback location. The mare became even more concerned upon seeing Sunset unconscious and not seeing Trixie with them. She asked almost unwillingly:

"What happened?" She hoped the answer wouldn't be what she feared.

"Sombra got us with a fairly clever trap." The purple unicorn said "Sunset had to Overdrive to help us escape, and we lost stealth. Trixie is distracting the Nightmare."

Ranger relaxed visibly. From Twilight's tone of voice, things weren't as bad as they could be. She might have been simply trying to make her fell better, but it didn't seem to be the case. Still, she was curious about something:

"Overdrive?" She asked.

Twilight shook her head slightly "First tell me if there's important news for us."

Ranger was embarassed, but she shook it off "The guards have been recalled to the castle." She wanted to have more information, but that was the only message she had received ever since she took position at the start of the plan.

"Okay. In that case will need to use plan variation 4c. So I have time to explain things before Sunset wakes up." The purple unicorn nodded. Then she started talking with a lecturing tone:

"You know how sometimes ponies force their magical reserves too much and they get weak and unable to use magic for a while?" She waited for Ranger to nod before continuing "That's the result of drawing more energy from the soul than your body can handle. The soul reduces the production of energy to discourage the pony from doing something that could cause serious harm.

"Overdrive is a controlled way of pulling extra energy from the soul, an entire burst of energy. But the consequences are harsher, as you can see." She motioned to the fallen unicorn.

Ranger nodded thoughtfully, so this was the kind of thing apprentices of Celestia learned... She returned to the present upon hearing a small groan.

"Oh!" Twilight said, smiling broadly "Sunset is waking up, which means she should soon recover completely and regain her magic."

The unicorn giggled, which Ranger Time thought seemed inappropriate to the situation. Then she went back to talking.

"Which means I can't stay here anymore, it's time for the next part of the plan." She turned to her companion and charged a spell.

"Chaos Magic: Flying Route!" She declared, and hit the flame-maned unicorn with the spell.

The body of her fallen companion started shining, and then floated into the air and started gaining speed.

"Go, Sunset Missile!" Twilight yelled, her hoof pointing forward, before teleporting and ending up standing atop Sunset's quickly accelerating body.

"Riding into the Danger Zooooooone!" She shouted, quickly flying off.

Ranger Time went speechless for a moment, before saying the only thing she could in this kind of situation.

"Those mares are weird."

-

The dark magic corrupted, mind controlled version of the Alicorn of the night and moon was familiar with all kinds of negative emotions. She was constantly engulfed in rage, her despair flared up whenever she was left alone for too long, envy was an old friend, and shame was constantly coming from the untouched parts of her soul.

Still, all of those were currently being choked out by a much simpler emotion: Annoyance.

Gah! That thrice damned unicorn is the most aggravating opponent I've ever faced! Eveything I use, she manages to dodge, teleport out of the way or turn out to have been an illusion all along! And while her spells don't cause any actual damage, they still hurt! From which layer of Tartarus has this demonic fly come?!

-

In a small hospital in Manehattan, Doctor Delivery felt a strange sense of indignation for a moment.

-

The Nightmare saw and felt the illusionist mage charge another spell, she blasted the entire area (which was already looking like a post-apocalyptic land) with an overwhelming amount of magic, while still holding a dimensional lock spell.

And the unicorn somehow managed to create a platform and ride on the edge of the shockwave without being injured, before blasting her with another of those painful attacks!!

As the Alicorn tried to work out some combination of attacks her opponent wouldn't be able to evade, her attention was caught by a throughly unexpected sight:

At the extreme edges of her large sight range, there was a glowing yellow unicorn flying through the air, with a purple unicorn standing on her back. The corrupted princess experienced another unusual emotion at the time: Utter bafflement.

Gahhh! And then the unicorn hit her again! She was going to kill that Tartarus forsaken creature if it was the last thing she did!

-

Sunset was annoyed. Ever since childhood, she was always aware that Legendary Heroes were experts at riding things into battle, be they dragons, spirits or their own directed power. So, the three of them had trained to be able to ride anything for the moment where this would become relevant.

And in the end, it turned out Twilight was the first out of the three to ride something into battle, and had done so by turning her body into a riding board. And it seemed like she had been planning something like this for awhile, considering what Sunset had heard after awakening.

Thankfully, she was fast approaching a viable target for her current frustrations. The earth pony avatar of Luna was in sight, and she still hadn't noticed their approach. This could only mean one thing, and she moved her head to signal her passenger.

"PREEMPTIVE ATTACK!" The two shouted at once, and Sunset charged her own spell, Twilight following in a practiced way.

"Duo Magic: Spiral Cannon!" The two cast, releasing a spiraling blast of solar energy with great explosive potential (courtesy of Twilight's chaos magic increasing the volatility).

The avatar felt the attack coming at the last moment and moved, accelerating faster than should be possible for an earth pony and still being hit by the shockwaves and leading edge of the explosion.

Twilight jumped out of Sunset's back, who felt the flying spell running out and mobilized her magic to spread over her body and cushion her fall.

Then, the earth pony flew in their direction, and Sunset could see that she was covered in some kind of silver armor. Twilight created a wall in the way, and it didn't even slow the silver mare down.

Sunset used a mana reinforced hoof to block the enemy, then had to quickly move to the side as a piece of the armor flowed into a needle-like blade trying to stab her. She quickly charged and cast a close-range explosion to get some space, and then Twilight came through creating an iron net that actually managed to trap the opponent for several seconds before she formed rotating saws to cut through her restraints.

Neither of the two unicorns had been idle during that time, though. Twilight captured her again, inside a jelly-like substance that couldn't be as easily cut. As for Sunset...

"Magic Enhance: Solar Laser!"

She had been preparing her finishing move.

A laser was a good way to put it, it was a focused orange blast that went straight through the enemy's body.

She screamed, then collapsed, the silver armor flowing away, and the body shimmered out of existence like the other. Another of Nightmare Moon's avatars had been destroyed.

It seemed easier than the previous one, but that was only because her abilities weren't suited to this kind of fight, and the fact they attacked first and wounded her a bit, and didn't give her time to recover. That was how Sunset saw the situation anyway.

-

The Alicorn emitted a sound that was half shout half grunt, as she felt another of her avatars be destroyed, and with it, even more of her power was sapped. She still wasn't having any luck with that damned unicorn, who seemed to somehow always know what she would...

Even though the Nightmare was far from sane by any measure, she still had enough presence of mind to deduce what was actually going on when the idea got in her head.

Ignoring the next painful attack (always painful, always distracting, never causing any real injuries) she cast the strongest and most comprehensive spell against mental influence the rules of her mind control allowed her to.

And the unicorn disappeared. The unicorn that had been fighting her for several minutes without getting any real injuries herself, who seemed able to evade any attacks she threw.

Nightmare Moon screamed in explosive anger and teleported to the site of the death of her second avatar.

-

Perfect Illusion: Shadow Opponent was a flawed spell, in Trixie's opinion. The manipulation was too blatant and too easily countered, which was bad when the real worth of the spell was in its ability to last long without any maintenance by the caster, while other illusions could only last for a moment and still have a big impact.

Still, for some situations, it was definitely the perfect spell.

She relaxed and her two partners teleported to her position, cancelling the spell she had up specifically to conceal the spatial disturbances of teleportation, rendering them impossible to follow. It was just in time, as she felt her other spell being broken.

She looked at the two, who had sent a message as soon as they destroyed the avatar, and received news of her position in return. Now, the enemies knew nothing of their positions, which was just how Trixie liked it. After all, it was hard to do an amazing entrance if everyone already knew where you were.

"So, what's the situation?" She asked.

"The guards have been pulled to protect the castle." Twilight said "And my roaming eye tells me Nightmare Moon went to protect her last avatar."

"Then it's time for us to attack the castle directly." Sunset stated.

Trixie didn't contradict her. The show was getting closer and closer to the climax, and they were still on schedule, regardless of the problems.

She couldn't wait.

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