• Published 31st Mar 2017
  • 3,179 Views, 93 Comments

The Mare that eats The Monsters - Skijarama



She is known as no more than a myth, a legend, a bedtime story to scare little foals. Her name is Moonrise Drifter, and Twilight Sparkle is going to learn more about her than anypony has in a long time...

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Chapter 10 - A Horizon Forgotten by All But One

“I’ll be honest, I was expecting more teeth, Horizon.” Drifter said snidely, watching carefully as all of the fiends in the putrid garden stepped away to make a clear path between herself and Horizon.

“I have plenty, little one.” Horizon said with a smirk as he drew closer. His eyes fell on Twilight, who looked to be frozen with fear. “Remember me, your highness?” he gave an exaggerated bow.

“Eyes off the royalty, Horizon. If you want to oggle something, I’m sure my teeth tearing out your windpipe will be perfect.” Drifter growled, snapping one of her wings out to shelter Twilight from his piercing gaze.

“Oh, come now. I’m trying to have a civil conversation and here you are, threatening me with such brutality? Dear oh dear, what would your mother dearest think?” Horizon asked almost playfully, a grin appearing on his face to reveal rows upon rows of jagged, serrated teeth and a long, forked tongue.

“You’re actions have caused countless ponies to die over the years!” Drifter snapped, her claws poking free reflexively. “I like to think my mother would be smiling at me and urging me on from her grave, you monster.”

“Fiend,” Horizon corrected with a scowl. “And even if that were true, it would help your statement if your mother were actually dead, Drifter.”

“Don’t start with that, Horizon. I attended my mother’s funeral when I was fifty years old. She’s been dead for longer than I’ve even known about you.”

“I don’t mean your adoptive parents.” Horizon said while claws began to grow from his own hooves; they were larger, thicker and far more vicious looking with serrations and spines all along them. “Your biological mother is still up and about.”

Drifter scoffed. “Tch. Some mother she turned out to be, leaving me in the forest to be found by the first ponies to trot by. Didn’t even bother giving me a name or a note to those who had to raise me because of her negligence.”

“Hmph... Well, I suppose when you and her next meet, you’ll be able to talk it all out.” Horizon’s voice grew more serious as the tentacles began to reach from his back once more.

“Well, I have work to do here, and I am going to do it. Now sit still and let me kill you!” Drifter said, a furious battle cry ripping from her throat as she sprung forward, eyes glowing brightly, teeth bared and claws extended.

Horizon quickly stepped to the side, Drifter impacting the ground where he had been with enough force to break stone and send dust flying. She quickly shifted and lurched sideways, tackling him in the front and knocking him back several feet before following up by plunging her claws into his chest. She was expecting blood to come flying, or perhaps some vile, rotting substance that allowed his perpetual existence.

She was not expecting her claws to crack and snap on impact, thin trails of blood spurting from the extension of her own limb. Her eyes went wide in shock, the white-hot pain shooting up her foreleg was so incredibly intense that she couldn’t even breath.

“I expected more caution, frankly.”

Drifter felt blood dribble from her mouth, a gasp and violent cough of pain running through her as one of the tentacles shot down blindingly fast, the blade on it’s tip effortlessly running Drifter through and tearing out through her belly.

“DRIFTER!” Twilight shouted out, lifting her saber in her magic to try and help. Three fiends of varying shapes pounced upon her, pinning her to the ground and knocking her saber out of the air. One of the fiends that Drifter called a duck pounced and clamped its teeth down on Twilight’s horn, stopping her magic entirely and drawing an ear-splitting scream of agony from her.

On her end, Drifter twitched and wheezed out a strangled groan of pain as she was lifted and held up, facing Horizon. His eyes were narrowed with a long list of emotions running through them. Anger, disappointment, disgust and pity. “I had figured you’d be able to guess that my own biology can’t harm me.”

“W-w-what the b-buck are- ACK!! ...grr, what are you t-talking about?!” Drifter grimaced and grunted out, writhing uselessly in her suspended state. Horizon sighed with a shake of his head before turning sharply, the tentacle that had Drifter impaled on itself whipped around, sending her flying into a tree at the edge of the garden with enough force to put a spider-web crack into its trunk.

“Where do you think all of the fiends were based from, Drifter?” Horizon asked with a scowl as he drew closer. “For the most pure of the bunch, I would assume you knew.”

“I don’t care what they’re made of. It’s vile and I’m going to end all of it, and you, for the lives they have ended!” Drifter shot back in a shaky voice, trying to get back to her hooves.

“Wrong answer.”

Drifter cried out in pain as another of Horizon’s tentacles lanced out across her side, putting a long gash across it and damaging the muscles under her wing. She tried to counter attack with her good foreleg. Horizon’s own forehoof came up, it’s long claws twisting and grabbing Drifter’s claws like a hand would.

“The fiends come from me. I am the genetic baseline.” Horizon explained in a hiss before pulling on Drifter’s immobilized claws. Her breath caught in her throat and she froze as he pulled her claws clean out, blood spurting free from the holes in her hoof where they had once hid. She fell with Horizon glaring down at her. “And of every fiend I have ever seen, you have the most of that base in you..

Drifter coughed and whimpered before glaring up at him with an unspeakable hatred. He was unmoved, leisurely strutting around behind her. She tried to turn in order to keep him in her line of sight, but the sudden presence of his own clawed hoof slamming into her spine and pinning her down stopped her.

“Every other fiend here is maybe two or three percent of my genetics. The rest, as you know, is made from raw material fed into the pod in the center of the garden.” He said into her ear as he stood over her. “But you…” his sharpened teeth snapped, tearing off the tip of Drifter’s ear and drawing out a breathless, pitiful wheeze. He chewed and then spat out the piece of flesh as if it were revolting. He glared down at her in disappointment. “You are far more. At least half of your biology is mine, through and through. The other half…” a chuckle slipped out as he stood up. “That other half belongs to your mother.”

Drifter hissed before coughing violently, blood flying free from her mouth to the garden floor. “W-what… what does that make you, then… my dad?” she asked in a hoarse whisper.

“Yes, actually. It does.” Horizon said almost casually. He pulled his claws from her spine and then wrapped both of his front claws around the bases of her wings, the sharp extensions cutting into the muscles and tendons. “And I am so… so disappointed in you. I had high hopes for what you could accomplish for dear old daddy. All you’ve done instead is ruin so many of his efforts and plans…”

Drifter’s screams amplified into long, tortured howls when Horizon began to pull. She thrashed violently but was unable to escape his grip. Twilight couldn’t see what was happening from her trapped position. She simply shivered and whimpered at the screams and sounds of tearing flesh and snapping bones.

“I’m ashamed of you, Drifter. No daughter of mine would side with the ponies who wronged me so horribly.” he leaned down to her good ear, letting up in his pulling just long enough for her screams to die down a bit. “I disown you.”

“ENOUGH!”

A blinding white light suddenly came into existence overhead. Every single creature in the garden tried to shield their eyes from it, including Horizon himself. In rapid succession, golden beams of magic shot from the source of the light, piercing the hearts of every single fiend in the garden. Except for Drifter and Horizon.

Horizon grunted as the golden light shot at him like a comet, colliding with him and sending him flying back into the forest, crashing through a tree trunk in the process. A second later, the glow faded.

“Princess Celestia?!’ Twilight asked in surprise, slowly and shakily getting to her hooves.

“I’m here, Twilight.” Celestia said before kneeling down to Drifter. “Goodness… what did he do…?” she whispered to herself, Drifter having passed out from the shock and pain. As Twilight drew closer, Celestia’s horn lit up and sealed Drifter’s wounds to stop the bleeding. “Your claws and weapons will regrow… just give them time.”

“Princess, what are you doing here?” Twilight asked weakly, looking down to Drifter and grimacing at the unpleasant sight.

“...I’m facing my mistakes.” Celestia said simply. Twilight blinked in confusion before looking back towards the trees. Horizon was returning to the scene at a leisurely trot, brushing off a bruised shoulder with a hoof like it were nothing. “Twilight, take Drifter and get back to Little Lapis. Find your friends and go home.”

“What?”

“Don’t make me repeat myself, Twilight. You’re work here is done, as is Drifter’s… get out of here.” Celestia said firmly, shooting Twilight a hard stare.

“But what about you?!” Twilight asked loudly, slowly stepping back. She hesitantly lit her horn and grabbed Drifter in her magic all the same, pulling her over to rest on her back.

“I need to do this alone…” Celestia refused to look at Drifter now, looking at Horizon as he stood, waiting patiently for her to be done. “I’ll tell you why when I return.”

“Your majesty…?” Drifter mumbled from Twilight’s back, slowly opening her eyes and looking up at Celestia weakly. “What… what are you…?”

Celestia lowered her eyes and sighed. “Twilight. Go… now.

Twilight gulped and nodded before galloping from the dying garden. Drifter could see Celestia focusing on Horizon and opening her mouth to speak. She couldn’t hear what they were saying, but before they were completely out of view, she thought she could see them smiling warmly at each other.

Drifter felt a shot of confusion before she fell away from the waking world once more.

“Well, you’re certainly as radiant as ever. Haven’t even aged a day.” Horizon noted with a soft chuckle. His voice took on a softer tone when he continued. “You haven’t changed a bit. You’re just as I remember you… I know I can’t say the same for myself.”

“The centuries of malice have not been kind to you, Horizon…” Celestia said sadly before stepping forward slowly.

“Nor you, I would guess. You’re an expert at hiding how you feel, but I know you, Celestia.” Horizon commented with a fond smirk. “I’m certain that I know what you’re going to ask. Go ahead; make me feel good for a minute. Heavens know I need it.”

“Horizon…” Celestia stopped not far away from him, looking into his eyes with deep regret in her own. “It’s not too late. I can still help you. We can still save you from this…”

Horizon laughed quietly but honestly before looking up at her with a sad smile on his face. “I’m sure you would love that to be true. But you and I both know it’s too late for that.”

“Lumen…”

“Oh, my old nickname?” Horizon asked with a chuckle. “Well, Tia, I won’t lie. I am happy to see you again. But we both know how this has to end…”

Celestia didn’t say anything, a tear sliding down her cheek.

“So, let’s end it where it started.” Horizon said softly, putting a mutilated hoof to her chin and tilting her head to look at him. “Let’s meet in Canterlot. We’ll put it all to rest where it all began.”

Celestia couldn’t help the soft smile that crossed her face for a moment before a subtle sob shook her system. “How very poetic of you… even after everything that you’ve done… all you’ve been through…”

“I’m a monster, Celestia. But I haven’t forgotten what it means to be a pony.” Horizon drew his hoof away before backing away.

“...Please… I still want to help you.”

“I know you do. You just can’t. Not anymore.” Horizon said simply before turning and leaving the clearing his garden had once inhabited, the last of the foul growth having vanished and rotted away, leaving a large, empty patch of dirt where it had used to be.

Celestia sighed before turning to leave as well.

“...I don’t believe that.” with that, she took to the air with her wings and sluggishly made her way back to Little Lapis. She had a lot of explaining to do and preparations to make in Canterlot.

I can still save you… I’ll do whatever it takes.