• Published 8th Jul 2012
  • 986 Views, 12 Comments

Knights of Old Equestria - Diddely Doo

The story of Ditzy Doo, a young Republic soldier on a mission to rescue the Jedi Twilight Sparkle.

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Chapter 2: The Surface of Taris

Knights of Old Equestria:

Chapter Two - The Surface of Taris

Ditzy felt paralyzed, she was very warm and felt a bright light that she could see through her closed eyelids. She waited for her pupils to dilate properly before daring to open her eyes to see where she was. She opened her eyes, and was staring at the ceiling of an unfamiliar room. Looking around, she could see that the room had very plain, light blue walls. And that one wall had a large window that overlooked a bustling city with speeders flying about in every direction. The sun was just rising over the horizon, and Ditzy still had trouble looking directly through the window to observe the bright, outside world. Ditzy sat up straight on the warm bed she was on, moving the white blanket to the side. She waited there for a few moments, staring at the floor, waiting for her head to stop fluttering from the sudden blood flow to her lower legs. Ditzy still felt as stiff as a board when she finally got out of her bed, her legs and wings struggling to obey commands her brain sent their way.

After a few minutes of warming up her tense muscles, Ditzy began thinking about where she was and how she got here. She could remember getting in an escape pod with another pony, Rainbow Dash, and escaping the Endar Spire. The pod must have landed on this planet, Taris. Ditzy remembered this planet being mentioned a few times when she was still aboard the Endar Spire. Taris was basically one massive city that towered above the planet's surface. Other than that though, Ditzy hadn’t made it a priority to learn too much about the planet she was now on.

Walking around the room, Ditzy figured she must be in some kind of hotel or apartment, something cheap. There was one big light in the center of the square ceiling, and the walls were very plain. There were two doors in the room, one leading into a small restroom and the the other leading outside of the apartment room into the main part of the building. There were two beds, two footlockers, and a workbench in the room. One of the beds was neatly made but empty, the other was still a mess from Ditzy’s use, but she was too confused to bother making her bed. Somehow Ditzy had gone from falling out of the sky toward this planet, to sleeping comfortably in some cheap apartment building high above the planet’s surface. Ditzy was inclined to discover how she had gotten into this room, so she jumped in the shower, grabbed some clothes from the footlocker, holstered her blaster over her left cutie mark, and prepared to start exploring this new unfamiliar planet. However, just as Ditzy went to open the door, it began to slide open. Preparing for the worst, Ditzy rested a hoof over her blaster, and unbuckled the leather strap, ready to strike.

The pony on the other side was a bit shocked to open the door and see a grey pegasus glaring into her eyes, a hoof on her blaster. The two ponies stood still for a few moments before the blue pegasus decided to speak up.

“Hey there sleepyhead!” Rainbow Dash shouted enthusiastically, “You remember me right?” Ditzy stared blankly into Rainbow Dash’s eyes, “Right?”

Ditzy remained silent for a few more seconds before speaking up, “Yes,” she replied, “but might I ask where we are exactly?” Ditzy rebuckled her holster and turned to walk back into the room.

Rainbow Dash followed Ditzy enthusiastically “Well!” she exclaimed, “We’re on Taris! After you passed out during our fall, and I had to sit in that tiny metal tube all alone, I figured that you wouldn't make it too long with all those wounds. So as soon as we landed, I had to put you on my back and carry you all the way up here and find a doctor. It’s a good thing I’m fast on my hooves too! I heard that as soon as all of the drop pods started landing Sith troops began taking republic soldiers prisoner, they even put a quarantine on the planet to prevent any of us from escaping. I think we got out just before the Sith would have captured us. By the way,” she continued, “How’s your ear doing?”

Ditzy suddenly noticed that she could hear much clearer than she had after the blast on the Endar Spire. “Good. How did it heal so fast?” she questioned.

“Well to be honest,” Rainbow admitted, “It wasn’t that fast. We’ve actually been on Taris for five days now, you’ve been unconscious pretty much the whole time. I brought you up to the local doctor and he fixed you up nicely! Meanwhile I snagged this little apartment and...”

Ditzy’s concentration trailed off as Rainbow Dash continued boasting about how she saved Ditzy’s life and got her to safety. She was grateful of course, but her mind was focused on another pony, a pony who wasn’t in the room currently. Twilight Sparkle. Ditzy knew that Twilight had made it off of the Endar Spire safely, but what about after she landed? Where was Twilight, and was she even in safe hooves?

“...but I haven’t seen anypony else from the Endar Spire yet.” Rainbow Dash continued, “Hopefully they’re all safe somewhere else on th-”

“What about Twilight?!” Ditzy interrupted, “Have you seen her? Is she alright? The Sith didn’t get her did they?”

“Well...” Rainbow began, “Here’s the thing with Twilight...”

“WHAT’S THE THING WITH TWILIGHT?” Ditzy questioned, her face growing bright red in frustration mixed with fear.

“Well,” Rainbow continued, a frown growing on her face, “She kind of, got captured by one of the gangs in the lower part of the city. But I’m sure she’s fine. I mean, she is a jedi after all, right?”

Ditzy could barely hold herself from attacking Rainbow Dash right there in their apartment room. At this point, Ditzy’s face was as fiery red as an erupting volcano, her hair standing on end, and her wings spread straight upward in fury. Rainbow Dash cowered lower as Ditzy began towering over her, her golden eyes glaring deep into Rainbow’s soul. “TWILIGHT WAS CAPTURED BY A GANG? AND YOU LET ME SLEEP FOR FIVE DAYS?” Ditzy couldn’t hold her anger in any longer. She turned to a wall in the room and punched it as hard as she could, leaving a large dimple in the once smooth surface. Bits of the wall stuck to her hoof, and crumbs of the plaster fell to the floor. Ditzy remained still, staring at her hoof, blood beginning to seep through the fresh cuts made from the wall. Ditzy looked toward the ceiling, knowing that the past was the past, and that it was only her current actions that could affect the fate of Twilight Sparkle. Ditzy had sworn to protect Twilight with her life, and as long as Twilight was still alive, Ditzy would do everything in her power to save her.

Ditzy calmed herself down enough to talk calmly, “Do you know where she is?” she asked , a slight twinge of anger still in her voice.

“Not exactly.” Rainbow responded, a nervous look on her face, “I just know that one of the gangs in the lower city has her. She’s probably just locked up in a room down there somewhere.”

“Lower city?” Ditzy asked. “What in the hay is the lower city?”

Rainbow gave Ditzy a look like she was joking, but Ditzy seemed absolutely clueless. “Taris is built into three levels.” She said. “We’re in the upper city now, where all of the wealthy ponies live and most of the businesses are. The lower city is more ratty. A lot of gangs hang out down there, and a lot of other illegal stuff like that. And the last is the under city, where our escape pod landed, that’s basically where the poorest of the poor have to live. They aren’t even allowed up to the lower city without strict authorization. It was a tough task getting from down there up here without alerting any Sith troops! Your lucky I’m so awesome.”

Ditzy ignored Rainbow’s last statement, trying to remain calm. Twilight was alive somewhere down in the lower city, but obviously getting her out of the hooves of that gang would be a true test. Not to mention that her and Rainbow would have to somehow sneak past the guards to even get down there.

There was a long silence before Rainbow decided to speak, “So...” she began, “Got any brilliant plans on rescuing Twilight? Or should I offer my own idea?”

Ditzy snapped back into focus, “You have an idea on how to save Twilight?” she asked sarcastically. “Well let’s hear it, I guess.”

Rainbow Dash got an excited look in her eyes at the chance to suggest her own plan. “Okay!” she stated enthusiastically, not sensing the sarcastic tone in Dity’s voice. “So while you’ve been up here snoozing I’ve been walking around exploring the city. There are Sith soldiers everywhere, but they’re the only ones allowed to move from level-to-level in the city. I’ve been watching the soldiers’ guard schedules closely, and I think I may have found a perfect opportunity to sneak down to the lower city. I overheard some smugglers talking about some Sith uniforms they had hidden somewhere. Maybe we can convince this smuggler to sell us a couple of Sith uniforms. Then we can get rid of one of the Sith patrols and take their place to get into the lower city.”

Ditzy listened intently to Rainbow’s plan, and Rainbow Dash spoke with the confidence that gave Ditzy hope in Rainbow’s plan. After all, Rainbow said she had been exploring the city for the past five days, so she easily knew more about the planet than Ditzy did. “Do you know where this smuggler is Rainbow?” Ditzy asked.

“Yeah actually,” Rainbow responded, “he’s staying in an apartment building like this one on the East side of the city. If we leave soon we might even be able to get to the lower city before noon, if you feel like you’ve recovered enough from your injuries.”

“Yeah I’m fine.” Ditzy answered, standing up a bit straighter than she was before. “We should leave before anything bad happens to Twilight!”

“Agreed.” Rainbow confirmed. “Let’s go.”

Rainbow Dash turned her back toward Ditzy, the two ponies now facing the room’s front door. Rainbow moved her left forehoof over a panel on the wall, and the door slid open, displaying the hallway of the apartment building.

Little did the two pegasi know, a Sith patrol had heard word of republic soldiers staying in the building, and were now on the hunt to find and kill the two ponies. By the time Rainbow Dash and Ditzy had left their room, they could hear shouting coming from down the curved hallway. Within moments, a patrol of five sith troopers made its way down the corridor and closed in on Ditzy and Rainbow Dash.

“Stop right there!” one of the troopers ordered. “We were searching for the Republic escape pods in the area, and we need to know if you have any infor-” he paused, his eyes widened, “Republic spies!” he spat, “That’s them! Kill them! Kill them now!”

Before Ditzy had time to react, Rainbow Dash had unholstered her blaster and aimed straight for the Sith giving orders. What occurred next seemed almost to be in slow motion. Ditzy’s heart skipped a beat as adrenaline shot through her veins, increasing her sight and hearing abilities tenfold. She looked at Rainbow Dash just as the blue colored pegasus released a bright red plasma charge into the face of the head Sith. The plasma round burned through flesh and bone as it slid its way into and through the head of the Sith trooper, scorching the wall behind him with red-hot heat, then fading to a black, chalky burn mark. Before the plasma charge had even hit the wall though, Rainbow Dash already had her blaster trained on the next Sith pony, releasing round after round in his direction. The first shot only grazed his upper-left shoulder, making him cringe, but the second and third burned through his chest, leaving him gasping for air through his burned chest cavity. It finally dawned on Ditzy that she needed to join Rainbow Dash in disposing of the three remaining Sith ponies before they could outmatch Rainbow’s ludacris targeting speed. Ditzy grasped the hilt of her vibroblade as Rainbow aimed her blaster at yet another Sith trooper. Ditzy charged toward the nearest Sith trooper, who had his blaster targeted on Rainbow, and Ditzy used her wings to increase her thrust toward the enemy. With the combination of adrenaline, and the urge to protect the pegasus who had saved her life, Ditzy’s blade glided through the front of the Sith’s armour, and sliced into his stomach, lifting the sword as she went up his chest and into his face. Ditzy only realised how fast she had been after she crashed into the wall on the opposite side of the hallway, next to the burn mark Dash’s blaster had made after the first kill. Ditzy re-oriented herself just in time to see the final Sith trooper fall, exposing Rainbow Dash on the opposite side with blaster still raised. The two stood still for a moment before running as fast as they could to the front door and leaving the building.

The two pegasi stepped out onto the raised platform that was Taris’ upper city, and began walking silently toward the East. The two were walking side-by-side, with Rainbow leading the way just by a step. The two remained silent for a few minutes before Rainbow Dash couldn’t take the tension any longer and decided to speak up. “Well then!” she exclaimed, causing Ditzy to jump a bit at the sudden outburst. “That was a little bit unexpected, eh?” at this Rainbow Dash gave a friendly hard nudge at Ditzy’s arm with her elbow.

Ditzy couldn’t help but let a smirk crawl across her face, “Yeah a little bit.” she stated. “Seemed pretty easy though, where did a pilot learn to shoot like that?”

Rainbow Dash turned her head toward Ditzy with a large smile on her face, “Oh that? Psh, that was nothin’.” she boasted. “You should have seen me up on the Endar Spire before it went down, I faced at least a dozen Sith troopers all alone. Now that was something!”

Ditzy couldn’t help but doubt the validity of Dash’s story, but she didn’t bother to question it and risk getting on Dash’s bad side. Ditzy felt like this blue pegasus could become a real asset in rescuing Twilight, as well as becoming a possible friend for future Republic missions. Perhaps even for after the war, the two could remain friends. No. Ditzy had to keep her mind on the mission, she had to save Twilight before she could think of any sort of future. Without Twilight, the Republic could easily fail to obtain a victory over the Sith in this war.

“But truthfully,” Dash said, interrupting Ditzy’s thoughts, “I fought in the Terra Warmarch as a ground soldier, not a pilot.”

“I see,” Ditzy began. She didn’t really want to pursue the question further. Truthfully, she didn't know a lot about the Terra Warmarch. Only that it had something to do with earth ponies rebelling somewhere for some reason unknown to her. “So how did you become a pilot after that then?”

“Well, before the war even started I was already familiar with ship controls. In my home on Telos IV, I was pretty well known for being an expert speeder pilot. I was in a whole bunch of races, and I never lost a single one!”

“Wow, that’s impressive.” Ditzy admitted, “But that doesn’t explain how you became a pilot for the Republic.”

“Right,” Dash responded, “Well, during one of the last battles in the war, our ship went under siege and nearly all of our commanding officers and pilots were gone or captured. I was the next best option we had.” Dash’s face became serious at this point as the two continued East through a gate toward their destination. “I gathered about a dozen other ponies and we started for the bridge. Nearly half of us fell, and by the time we reached the bridge, only me and one other pony were left unscathed. As soon as we got control of our ship, though, I grabbed the main controls and we blasted our way out of there.”

Ditzy wasn’t sure, but she thought she saw Dash wipe a tear away from her cheek.

“I’ll never forget that day. We lost so many good colts and mares in that fight. We retreated from the fight, but all of us received all of the medals and awards in the book for saving the ship and preventing total annihilation of our fleet. To this day I hate myself for running away though. We should have stayed and fought!” Dash asserted. Her face was fiery red at this point. “I know we wouldn’t have made it, but I would have rather died fighting than ran away like a coward.”

Ditzy simply nodded, not able to find the correct words in response to Dash’s story. The two ponies continued toward their destination, increasing their speed to a trot as the sun began to drop down over the horizon. The last thing the two ponies wanted was to get caught after dark with no identification and a whole army of Sith troopers roaming around the city.

The two ponies continued silently toward their destination. Dash’s pace noticeably began to increase as they neared their objective. Dash turned a corner and stopped dead in her tracks, causing Ditzy to stumble into her from behind.

“Hey! Watch it clumsy.” Dash hissed. “We don’t need to draw any attention to ourselves here, there are guards all over the place.”

Ditzy moved wordlessly around the side of Dash to get a view of what it was exactly that lie before them, and her heart nearly skipped a beat when she saw the massing of Sith droids that were in the plaza ahead. Ditzy counted just over a dozen battle droids, and more were funneling in and out through four large gates spread about either side of the plaza, two on the left and two on the right from where Ditzy and Dash stood. Adorning the center of the plaza was a large ornate fountain that was lying dormant at that moment, its water reflecting the light of Tais’ four moons onto the surrounding buildings. One building in particular stood out to Ditzy, and Dash had her eyes trained on the very same building.

The building was a tall cylindrical shape similar to the apartment building Ditzy had woke up in earlier that day, only this one was noticeably shorter by at least a dozen floors, and the walls of the building didn’t reflect the luminescent glow from the fountain as well as some of the other buildings surrounding the plaza. Most of the windows were also dark in this building, making it look like a shadow compared to the rest of the city.

The very sight of the structure gave Ditzy a tingle down the back of her neck and spine, but she felt confident that she and Dash would have little trouble gaining access to the front door, which was guarded by only two Sith soldiers, whom were resting their hooves upon the hilt of their vibroblades. The only real issue was getting across the plaza.

Ditzy began thinking of a way to sneak by the droids without them noticing, but there were simply too many of them to sneak by quietly. Fighting their way through wasn’t an option at all, starting a firefight in the middle of Taris was as good as signing a suicide note.

To Ditzy’s surprise, Dash removed herself from her hiding place next to the wall and calmly started approaching the apartment building.

“Follow my lead.” Dash stated under her breath.

Before Ditzy had time to think, she found herself right behind Dash, trying to figure what the blue pegasus had in mind. “What are we doing?” Ditzy whispered hesitantly, her fear clearly heard in the tone of her voice.

“Relax Ditzy,” Dash said bluntly, “Just act natural, like you belong here. Pretend like we’re going home for the night.”

Ditzy chose not to question Dash’s plan at this point. The two ponies were already halfway across the plaza, and none of the Sith battle droids seemed to take any notice of their presence. Ditzy’s fear began to dissolve away as the two pegasi made their way all the way across the plaza and in front of the apartment building.

“Now for the tricky part.” Dash whispered.

The two ponies continued to the front door, hoping to make this encounter as simple as possible. One of the guards turned to Ditzy, and just before Ditzy reached for the door’s controls the guard spoke.

“Here, let me get that for you miss.” The guard raised his hoof and typed a number code into the lock and the door slid open.

Ditzy took a sigh of relief. “Oh, thank you sir.”

“Not a problem miss.”

The two ponies walked through the doorway, and finally entered the apartment building. Ditzy couldn't help but smile at the ease of entering the structure, which Dash caught in the corner of her eye.

“What’d I tell you?” Dash teased. “Everything worked out nicely in the end. Now to just find the room where that smuggler is.”

The two ponies began their search for the correct room. Most of the rooms were locked, but Dash had enough skills to deal with the simple lock systems to hack into any apartment door with ease. The ponies went from room to room until they got about halfway around the building’s inner hallway and reached a door guarded by a Sith battle droid.

Dash and Ditzy glanced at each other, knowing that the smuggler must lie just beyond the door. Dash raised her blaster toward the battle droid and made a clean shot through the metal pony’s temple, leaving nothing but a pile of smoking scrap metal.

“Get your blaster ready,” Dash said as she approached the door’s lock, “ We’ll probably have company on the other side of this door.”

The metal door slid open, revealing a room filled with a squad of four Sith soldiers in the middle of an interrogation. At the center of the room sat the pony that Ditzy assumed must be the smuggler. Two of the guards had their backs faced toward Dash and Ditzy, one was standing over a pile of Sith military uniforms, and the other stood by the door with wide eyes. He obviously wasn’t expecting a visit from two Republic ponies.

Very quickly, one of the soldiers grabbed the smuggler by the neck, and raised him up to his hooves. The Sith pressed his vibroblade firmly against the colt’s neck, preventing Dash and Ditzy from taking any immediate action against the Sith.

Dash and Ditzy stood side by side, hooves resting intently over their blaster holsters. The Sith soldier stood firm, his vibroblade pressed tightly against the smuggler’s neck. A small drip of blood made its way through the smuggler’s coat and dripped down to the floor. The world as Ditzy knew it began to slow down as her adrenaline started to kick in.

The blood hit the floor with a light splat, smaller drops spreading across the ground in a microscopic explosion. Ditzy’s eyes focussed hard on the soldier and his captor, her eyes straightened. She glanced at Dash, who already looked ready to strike at a moments notice.

Ditzy’s hoof moved like lightning, she grabbed her blaster, raised it, and fired in the blink of an eye. The soldier holding the smuggler went stiff, dropping his vibroblade to the ground as the blaster shot melted through his eye and brain tissue, leaving a small burnt hole in his eye socket. The smuggler dropped down immediately and grabbed the vibroblade, charging at the soldier to his left. Dash at this point had grabbed her blaster and was making quick work of the pony standing by the door. Ditzy turned to her right to see another soldier with his blaster raised, prepared to the pull the trigger. Ditzy’s first reaction was to throw her blaster at the soldier, causing a distraction. The soldier easily dodged the weapon, but by the time he had his blaster trained on Ditzy again she was already slicing through his armour, and his flesh. The pony let out a short scream before falling to the ground.

The three ponies remained in their fixed positions, awaiting any sort of danger, but none came. The three began to calm down and eventually Ditzy managed to speak.

“We should get out of here before more guards show up.”

“Good idea. Hey You!” Dash shouted.

“Eh? What?” The smuggler asked, still shocked from the attack.

“We’re gonna need two of those uniforms, consider them payment for your rescue.”

“Uhh, sure. Take whatever you need. Thanks for the help.” The smuggler responded incredulously. “Hey, uhh, what are your names?”

“That’s unimportant, just know that you’re lucky to still be alive.” With that, Dash grabbed two Sith uniforms and tossed one towards Ditzy. The two ponies threw the uniforms on over their clothes, and fitted the helmets around their heads as snugly as they could. The uniforms fit loosely over their bodies, and covered up their wings, making movement slow and awkward. The two ponies were forced to ignore the uncomfortable metal armour and ran past the smuggler towards the exit.

Casually leaving the apartment, Ditzy and Dash began to march their way through Taris toward the elevator that would take them down to the lower city. Both ponies moved in silence, trying to remain as inconspicuous as possible just in case anypony suspected something was amiss.

Ditzy and Dash made their way slowly back across the city toward the elevator Dash had scouted days earlier. Walking around a corner, the two ponies’ eyes locked onto a single heavily armed Sith soldier protecting a large square metal door with a combination lock that looked impenetrable. Dash once again took the lead as the two pegasi approached the guard, and Ditzy decided to stay back and let Dash do all the talking. Surely the blue pegasus had a plan to get past the guard.

The two ponies approached the Sith guard as casually as their clanky armour would allow. Ditzy could feel a bead of sweat trickle down the side of her cheek, and was thankful to have a visor covering her nervous expression.

“Evening.” Dash said in a low manly voice. “We’re here for our shift.”

A long awkward pause ensued for what felt like hours for Ditzy before the guard spoke up. “About time!” He exclaimed. “That smuggler must’ve caused you guys some problems, you’re ten minutes late!”

“Nothing we couldn’t handle.” Dash responded. “Just get us down quick before we miss any action.”

“Roger that. Good luck down there boys.”

And with that, the Sith soldier opened the elevator for Ditzy and Dash to descend into the lower city. As soon as the doors closed behind the them, both ponies let out a large sigh of relief.

“That wasn’t so bad was it?” Dash asked sarcastically.

“Whatever it takes to save Twilight.” Ditzy responded, her tone growing more serious.

“Right, whatever it takes.”

Dash raised a hoof and directed the elevator’s control panel to send them down into the lower level. The steel of the elevator began to creak, and the elevator jolted downwards before catching itself on the cables, leading the ponies down at a steady pace into the lower city.