• Published 15th Feb 2017
  • 1,755 Views, 54 Comments

My Little Hunters: Friendship is Achieving - PoH

The Achievement Hunters of Austin, Texas are finishing up a let's play when all of a sudden, a flash illuminates the room. Unconscious for who knows how long, they wake up to not only in another room but in another dimension.

  • ...

Chapter 4: The Secret of Starswirl's Tower

Dining Hall

The platters and mugs sat on the table finally inert from the hearty feasting. All six men sat back in their chairs groaning at the heavy but satisfying feelings they all had in their stomachs. Geoff reached to his third mug and attempted a drink in a buzzed stupor. Realizing there was nothing in the mug left, he set the mug back down and sat up with another small groan. Ryan was the least affected despite eating the most out of all six men and, unsurprisingly, Twilight. Twilight simply sat, patting her mouth with a floating napkin and letting out a small sigh. She looked at the six men and chuckled.

“So, I assume the food was to your liking?” Twilight said, sweeping her eyes from one side of the table to the other..

“And some, love.” Gavin said as he sat up as well. One by one Jack, Michael, and Ray sat up as well. They all laid eyes on the cleaned bones, cobs, and other food plates and bowls that were near spotless due to the two day fast the men went through.

“That meal was excellent.” Jack said, “Thank you for your hospitality.” The rest of the Crew mumbled their agreement with Jack’s thanks. Twilight bowed her head and looked back at them.

“You all are very welcome.” She began, “After all, you are going to possibly save our and all other universes from potential destruction.” she smiled.

The Crew sat, staring blankly at her trying to comprehend what was just said. The whole of the hall went dead silent at the realization of the severity of the “mission.” None of them expected the mission to be on this scale. Geoff had an idea of how bad it could be, considering the spell that brought them here searched whole universes, but he never thought something like this. The silence was so thick it could be cut with a knife. Geoff decided, before panic would spark, he asked the question on everyone’s mind.

“And how exactly are we expected to do that when we have no magic like any of you stupid ponies?” Twilight flinched a little at the hurtful remark but decided to ignore it and answer Geoff’s question.

“Whether or not you six have magic is not the problem. The problem begins with if what the princesses and I have ready for you six will work in the first place. We didn’t expect you to not have magic since living things in our universe need a mana network to live. So this may complicate things, but I’m not entirely sure.”

“So what is it that you princesses have for us?” Ryan asked the next question everyone was wondering. Twilight stepped off her chair and placed her napkin on her plate.

“If you all are ready, I will gladly show you what we mean.”

“Hold on, hold on!” Geoff said loudly as Ryan, Michael, Ray, and Gavin began following Twilight. Geoff had slammed his chair into the table and began storming over to Twilight. Jack didn’t like the look Geoff had. Jack got up and grabbed Geoff by his arm before he could get any closer to Twilight, which Geoff was already in swinging distance of her. “You expect us to go out on a limb for you and your stupid kingdom on a ‘maybe it’ll work?’ We don’t have magic and even the tall princess said that it might be impossible for even you spell-casting morons.” Twilight stood looking at Geoff.

“Calm down, Geoff,” Gavin said approaching Geoff and laying a hand on Geoff’s shoulder to which Geoff slapped off and he shook free of Jack’s grip. Gavin felt his feelings genuinely hurt by Geoff’s snap at him, but Gavin tried to ignore it and reason that Geoff was just looking out for them.

“You fucking calm down!” Geoff said, not looking at Gavin but directing it at him. “What is it you expect us to do Princess Twilight?! Throw it all away just to save your own asses?”

“That’s enough, Geoff.” Michael said as he put his hand on Geoff’s chest and started pushing him back with Jack’s help. Twilight looked at the ground, letting her mind seemingly wander, but was actually developing some calming words for Geoff that were true. She didn’t want to make any promises and she wanted Geoff to know that, but she also wants him to feel more comfortable with the situation. Maybe even get him to feel obligated to help. She knew he was once a soldier, kind of. Maybe it’s in his nature to help others, as he is exhibiting it in his protection and concern of his friends here. She looked up at him and finally decided what to say.

“Geoff, I ensure you that we did not bring you all here to save only ourselves. This universe has spawned many-a-time a tyrannical, megalomaniac pony that wants this universe to be wiped out. We have taken preventative measures against these kinds of threats. I stand here with not only my universe in danger, but all of them are in danger, including yours.” Geoff flinched a small bit at that last sentence. Twilight took notice that it struck a nerve and she played off of that, finding the weakness in his anger. “Do you have a family Geoff?”

“Yeah, what of it?” Geoff tried to be as aggressive as he was before, but the thought of Millie and Griffon in danger began to make his aggressive demeanor falter.

“And you love your family with all of your heart, yes?” Twilight said, sounding more comforting than informative. Geoff nodded looking at the ground. “Well then, you may not be known as a hero in all universes, not even in your own, but you can be one here. You can be a hero to all universes and only our universe and you six would know. But wouldn’t it just be terrible that we send you six back to your universe only to sit and wait for it’s doom to come knowing you could have done something to stop it? It may not be in your time, but what about your children’s time?”

Geoff had terrible images of Millie fighting for her life in a war that he should have prevented. Not only that, but what about the other guys? What if Michael’s, Gavin’s, Ray’s, or anyone’s future kids get mixed up in it? He didn’t want that to happen knowing he could have done something to stop it. But he still felt like this “mission” would be a long shot should Twilight’s plan work, and totally impossible if it didn’t work. He picked his head up and looked at the faces before him. His coworkers. No, his friends. Not even that… his brothers were all looking at him and waiting for his response. Even now in this emotionally crumpled state, they look to him for guidance. Gavin and Ray smiling, Michael’s confident cross-armed stare, Ryan’s mighty stature and gaze, and Jack’s soft expression gave Geoff what he needed to give his answer.

“Okay,” Geoff began finally, “we’ll do whatever we can to stop all of this. No more complaining from me. I have a family at home and a family right here to protect.” The rest of the Crew patted Geoff’s shoulders and back, reassuring that they all understood why he panicked as he did just then.

Twilight smiled and gave a nod towards Geoff. She looked at the rest of the men.

“Any more anger-driven emotional outbursts?” Geoff chuckled at that as he wiped an unnoticeable tear forming in his eye from the emotional stress. Twilight looked at all of them as they all shook their heads, ending any possible future outbursts of aggression. “Good. Now if you will all follow me, I will guide you to Starswirl’s Tower where we will apply the only and last trick we have up our sleeve.” Twilight began walking down the hallway outside of the dining hall. The Crew followed in closely behind, not sure what this “trick” could be.

Starswirl’s Tower

Twilight and the AH Crew walked up the what seemed like several hundred steps to Starswirl’s Tower, being the second highest tower in the castle. The first being Luna’s observatory. The Crew sighed in relief when they finally reached the top as Twilight continued her pace towards a moderately sized door. The door glowed in the aura of her magic as it slowly opened. The Crew followed Twilight inside the large rotunda.
A run-on counter ran along the inner circular wall that began at the left of the entrance and ended full circle on the right of the entrance. The counter had all sorts of machines and clockwork that would stimulate any curious mind. Other workbenches, counters, and bookshelves dotted the surface area of the doughnut-shaped room. The tower room had a second floor dedicated to one-of-a-kind spellbooks and ancient texts. One long bookshelf was against the outer wall of the room.

“Welcome to Starswirl’s Tower.” Twilight said proudly. The whole Crew was now in awe at the architectural design of the room to the finest details. The room’s floors and walls seemed to pulse with magic as the designs had small shockwaves of pure magic flowing through the designs to the vertex of the rotunda like electrical impulses to the nerves. All but one of the Crew stayed closely behind Twilight. Gavin approached the counter on the inner wall closely observing each mysterious device. It wasn’t until a small, white floating flower petal caught his eye. He let out a long “oooh” at the sight. Bent over, he turned his head from the petal towards the group and asked Twilight.

“Oi, Twilight!” Twilight turned her attention to Gavin to hear what he had to say. “Wot is this ‘ere flower petal for?” Twilight smiled at his curiosity.

“Oh,” Twilight began, “that is the last known petal of the Moonshade flowers.” She turned her attention to the large bookshelf in front of her and the rest of the Crew followed her eyes except Ryan who kept staring at Gavin. Gavin “ooh”ed again as he got closer wondering why it’s so special, despite it being one of the last of it’s kind. As if Twilight read his mind, she explained it’s importance as she shuffled through the books on the shelf pulling each halfway out, one by one.

“It was once used in hospitals as a healing plant. It was able to complete astonishing feats of medical miracles. Despite the hospital’s ‘regulation’ of the flower’s use, the flower became more and more rare until it was almost non-existent. The host of that petal was doomed to wilt soon so we had to get several petals before it wilted. That is the last one of the host left being sustained by the magic of this room.”

Gavin was lost after “healing plant” as he remembered his scuffle with Michael two days ago. He had a large bruise on his arm and a small cut on his finger that had already scabbed, but it still burned. So he thought that if such a flower were so powerful and being kept alive by the room’s magic, he could just borrow a little touch for the pain in his arm and the sting in his finger. His index finger barely grazed it, then the flower dissipated right in front of him. He made a small gasp and Ryan stifled a laugh with his hands as Twilight finished her history lesson.

“But please don’t touch the petal. These flowers were to be handled by at least adept mages. Petals were extracted in very precise and careful manners with gentle tools. One touch of a foreign, organic being could contaminate or even destroy the petal.” Twilight finished, still snout-deep in the bookshelfs looking for something, not noticing the frantic Gavin only meters behind her.

Gavin scrambled quietly along the counter as he found some white thin paper and scissors. He cut out a small amount of paper and assumed that size would match. He placed the paper in the same spot in the air where the petal once was. The paper floated perfectly in it’s place. Gavin then threw the paper into a receptacle and put the scissors back in their place. Ryan saw the whole thing and turned his attention to Twilight as Gavin began power walking back to the group as if he had a pole up his rear end.

“What’s wrong, Gavin? Why do you look so guilty of something, hunh?” Ryan asked with a devious smile.

“Wot are you on about, Ryan?” Gavin asked, trying to keep his cool.

“Nothing. You just seemed guilty.” Ryan replied.

“Eh, we’re all guilty o’ somthin’”

“Can’t argue with that.”

Twilight had just then pulled about three books out of the shelf. Instead of putting them in her neat piles of books, she simply dropped them on the floor. She stared at the back of the bookcase. Before Geoff could see what she was looking at, she stuck her hoof out towards the Crew.

“Please,” she said as she readied her horn, “stand back, all of you. I don’t know what this’ll do.” Geoff extended his arms and grouped the Crew behind him as he forced them backwards.

“So if you don’t know what this does,” Geoff asked, “then why are you doing it.” Twilight inserted her horn into a slot at the back of the bookcase as she answered Geoff.

“Because Starswirl the Bearded had intended what is behind this bookcase to be used in a time of great peril where more than just Equestria was in danger.” The locks began tumbling, clanking, and rumbling behind the bookcase. Twilight removed her horn and began stepping back, keeping her eyes glued to the shelf. “Only he and princesses have the shared knowledge of the spell to unlock this very complex and impenetrable lock.” The tumblers and mechanisms stopped their noise after several seconds of unlocking. The bookcase split in two and slid, parting the way to access the contents within.

Although, these contents were out of view of the Crew. As Twilight gazed at the marvel within, she motioned the Crew to join her in the relishing of the sight before her. The Crew walked over and gathered behind Twilight. Within the bookcase were ten large pedestals, each being about twelve feet in height. Each pedestal was decorated with unique and intricate designs that created a hooked ornament to complement the pedestal. The pedestals each had a tube-like object resting on their flat surfaces varying in color and design.

“So, uhh,” Ray started, “what are these things?” Ray pointed at the pedestals as he finished. Twilight turned one-eighty to look at the six men.

“This is the final option that will supplement the Elements of Harmony.” Twilight said, exchanging glances with the Crew in front of her.

“I’ll say this,” Gavin spoke up, “you ponies like to make everything super flashy.”

“Yes,” Twilight said, “well, these magical scrolls are going to, hopefully, be used by you six without any harm done to you all.” Twilight turned to a voice that she expected to be Geoff but was surprised that it was Michael who spoke.

“Wait, wait, wait. What do you mean ‘do harm to us?’ Have whatever those things are hurt ponies that used them?” Twilight grimaced knowing that she'll have to explain the problem with these scrolls and her​ possible solution to their use.

“There are pros and cons to these tomes before you. The big pro is that they give you access to weapons and knowledge of the weapons’ use. This includes their use in combination with the elements.”

“Uh huh,” Geoff said with his arms crossed, “and the cons?” Twilight gulped, thinking this as the final point where all six would protest and quit. She couldn't blame them, though. The con does outweigh the pro. They already had an unspoken agreement to be completely honest with each other, so Twilight held up to the agreement in her response.

“Well, in a normal situation with ponies,” Twilight paused with a breath, and continued, “the ponies would die in the extraction of the scroll's knowledge from the pony’s mind and body.” The Crew stayed quiet. Twilight felt as if their eyes were boring holes into her head, but she didn't realize until after a few seconds that they were really just waiting for her to continue. “But since your minds and bodies do not seem to contain natural magic, the scrolls’ powers may be lain over your minds and bodies. Much like a blanket.”

“And why does it kill ponies after they're done using it?” Michael asked the next question.

“With you six,” Twilight began explaining, “remember how I said it works like a blanket?” The six of them nodded. “Well with ponies and other magical beings, it merges with the natural magical energy of the user with the scroll's power. When the power is extracted, the natural power of the user is extracted as well as the power of the scroll. But you six…” Twilight waited to see if any of them caught on. To her surprise, Gavin was the first to respond.

“I get it.” Gavin started, “since we don't ‘ave magic for it to take out, it won't kill us… Right?” The Crew turned from looking at Gavin to looking at Twilight for confirmation. Twilight was still surprised at how quick he got it.

“Ya see,” Ryan spoke next putting both his hands on Gavin's shoulders, understanding Twilight's confusion, “Gavin being dumb is more of a chosen hobby for him rather than a cursed lifestyle.”

“Aww, thanks Ryan.” Gavin said.

“Except when he's a dumbass for real?” Michael said loudly.

“During his life AND as a hobby?” Ray cut in, “I don't think there's enough dumb to go around but you took it all during the one hundred-whatever let's plays of GTA. Way to go, champ.” Everyone especially Gavin and Ryan began to laugh. Twilight also began chuckling at Ray's humor, but she was the first to stop as she waited for the six men to finish their well deserved laugh.

“Well then,” Twilight said after the laughing died down, “now that you six understand the theory of the scroll's use, who wishes to volunteer for it in practice?” She scanned her eyes back and forth between the other five Hunters with a hoof outstretched in a questioning manner.

“Alright, fuck it.” Geoff said stepping towards Twilight and the pillars. “I spoke for you guys so I may as well go first.”

“I’ll go next… if it works.” Jack said.

“Okay,” Twilight said, “well, let’s get you started here.” Twilight walked Geoff to the first pillar. Geoff was eyeing the scroll that Twilight lifted with her magic. The scroll was extracted from the casing that it was residing in. The extensive magic from within came spilling out like fog from a fog machine.

“So what will this scroll thing give me?” Geoff asked. Twilight had already begun unrolling the scroll in front of Geoff who began looking upon it’s contents.

“I’m not sure, since you're human and don't have natural magic,” Twilight said as the lettering on the scroll began pouring off the parchment and surrounding Geoff, “But I’m ready to record.” Twilight had a quill and parchment ready to take notes. The magic swirled around Geoff as he read the contents. He then turned his eyes from the scroll to his five friends.

“Holy shit, guys! Check this out!” But then the letters became brighter and began to seemingly merge with Geoff’s person. The Crew shielded their eyes with their hands and Twilight shielded hers with her hoof. It stayed this way for several seconds until the light began to dim. One by one, the Crew lowered their hands to see what had happened to Geoff, if anything happened at all.

“So I guess it worked, right?” Geoff said, examining himself. Geoff wore a raiment under an armor plate that covered his chest, pauldrons and gauntlets to match, and a black trench coat accented with green laced designs. A sheath was strapped to his back with a claymore within. “And I look fuckin’ awesome.” Twilight took down notes while Geoff walked over to his friends.

“Sick duds, man.” Ray said, patting Geoff’s shoulder, “does your armor come in men?”

“No it doesn’t, Ray,” Geoff responded with his hand on Ray’s shoulder, “but we won’t judge if you do. Right guys?”

“Yum.” Ray continued the joke. All six started laughing again at the comedic banter. Meanwhile, Twilight continued writing. Geoff was the first to slow his laugh to a stop. He turned to a note-taking Twilight and asked her the question that all of the Crew was wondering.

“So Twilight, did it work?” Twilight looked up from her notes and approached Geoff. She examined him closely and even checked a few things with her magic. She wrote some things down on the parchment, rolled it up and set it down on a table.

“It has. And some.” Twilight answered Geoff. “The past users’ magical energy seems to have amplified the overall power of the scroll and its effects.”

“Sweet,” Geoff said, turning to the other five Hunters, “so who’s next?”

Author's Note:

Sorry for the wait time after I said that I'll have enough time to write more. I've been thinking of the ins and outs of this story so that it can be at least interesting since this only started out as an idea. This should be the last chapter that requires extensive explanation. Everything else will (hopefully) come in evenly. Please comment constructive feedback :pinkiehappy: