• Published 1st Jul 2017
  • 16,923 Views, 2,292 Comments

Necromancy For Foals - Queen Sanguine Dreams

Far from Canterlot and forced to work in gem mines for cruel Diamond Dogs, a young unicorn named Bone Marrow's pursuit of his cutiemark reveals a unique talent: raising the dead.

  • ...

Lying Never Works Forever

Scenic and Bone Marrow were left alone after their interrogation for the entire night. The young necromancer was still shaking with pain hours after the Knights had left and only fell asleep from fatigue.

In the morning, Scenic had pulled the bed's blanket over her friend and noticed that his eyes had stopped their slow bleeding. They crusted onto the colt's eyes and the filly debated whether or not she should wake him in order to apply fresh bandages. She also wondered about the possibility of finding meat for Bone, hoping it would lessen his pain if he was able to heal his eyes even a small amount.

Opening the door to their room as quietly as she was able and moving silently as hooves would allow, she wished her friend good luck with his recovery and shut the door behind her. Scenic found Bone's need for meat to be more of a strange quirk than anything abhorrent or gross, though the idea of actually holding flesh in her mouth made her queasy.

With a light stomp of her hoof to stomp out her metaphorical inhibitions onto the hardwood floor the young pegasus set off to the kitchens where the she and Bone had been run off the day previous by the cooks for attempting to steal cookies. Bone was a particular fan of oatmeal raisin cookies, which Scenic found to be odd when there were much tastier ones to be eaten.

To avoid making noise the filly used her wings to glide down the staircases and come to a soft landing on the rug on the bottom floor. The main hallway was under watch by two of Rich's guards, each glancing at the other and giving a noncommittal shrug at the presence of the filly.

Scenic nodded at the guards with an innocent smile and they responded in kind. She noticed that the door to the kitchen's pantry had been left open and that a small rat had been nibbling away at the manor's supply of hay. With a smile that threatened impending murder, the filly flew to a table top and looked for the best rat-killing device she could hold in her mouth. Her eyes finally rested on a menacing looking meat cleaver and she giggled. Her friend would finally have some of the meat that he needed, since he technically hadn't eaten in the days it took for their group to get from what remained of Galloping Glades to Rich's Manor.

Grabbing the cleaver in her mouth and swiftly turning her head towards the oblivious rat, she steadied her aim as much as possible to ensure there would be little chance of missing. Aligning the blade to the rat's spine would be good enough, she imagined.

"What are you doing in here again?"

Both the rat and Scenic jumped at the noise, the rat scurrying off into the pantry to hide among the food storage and the filly being greatly disappointed at the interruption. Looking to the source of volume with a meat cleaver still in her irritated mouth she was greeted by the sight of a tired chef pony.

"You know you're not supposed to be in the kitchen," The chef pony grumbled while setting down a bag, "And what are you doing with that meat cleaver, anyway?"

The cleaver wielding filly rested her makeshift weapon onto a counter-top in order to speak. "I was going to kill a rat before you interrupted me."

The pony was surprised by this. "A rat you say? In my kitchen?"

The chef took the meat cleaver from the table and wielded it with a precise magical grip. "Where did you last see it, young filly?"

Scenic pointed towards the pantry with a lazy hoof. "It ran off into the back, I think." After further thought she inquired with suspicion, "Why do you have a meat cleaver, anyway?"

Opening the door further with their magic and peering into the dark space of the pantry the chef replied, "We recieve guests from other kingdoms occasionally. Griffons are the most common; rude birds."

The filly's face scrunched with surprise. Griffons? Did that mean they kept meat stored here?

"Aha! There you are, you pest!" The chef called out triumphantly, their magical grip reaching out to pluck a guilty looking rat holding a tomato from the pantry. "Any last words?"

The rat squeaked quite pathetically, holding the tomato in front of its face like a shield to cower behind it.

The chef sighed, placing their cleaver on the nearby counter-top. "It's a shame they can be so cute sometimes, you know? It makes killing them so difficult."

With the chef escorting the rat out of the room in their magic, Scenic was once again left alone in the kitchen.

"If I were a chef," Scenic wondered while looking around the room and scratching her chin, "where would I put meat?"

Sometime later after intense searching that proved fruitless, the Chef eventually notified the curious filly about the location of the meat storage with moderate curiosity. Scenic explained that she had never seen meat before and wanted to take a look, so the chef suspiciously obliged.

"Look, I have to run and make sure the other chefs are going to wake up on time, alright?" The chef warned Scenic, "you're free to look, just don't take any of the meat; It's difficult enough to get our hooves on it."

Scenic nodded with the smile of an innocent filly and the chef soon left the kitchen. Not five seconds had passed before she pried her way into the larder and grabbed hold of a large slab of meat the size of her own chest. Her tongue sat in her mouth as far as possible away from the meat, the taste being fairly horrible to her, but it was all for a good cause. Bone Marrow needed to eat too, after all.

Poking her head out of the kitchen into the guarded hallway, she noticed the chef had just left through the front door. With the guards distracted she used her wings to fly up the staircases once more as quietly as she could manage holding the chunk of flesh in her mouth.

It was only then, to her own horror, that a Knight happened to round the corner and spot the filly holding meat in the middle of the hallway. The two stared at each other with worry; The knight for the possibility of a necromancer being present despite their search and the filly for fear that she was about to accidentally give up her friend.

Setting the meat down on the rug and licking her teeth in a futile attempt to wash the taste away, Scenic attempted to explain. "Uh, hello! I was just... taking this meat to the, um, the larder! Yeah. Found it laying around, heh, see ya!"

"Wait just a minute," The Knight called out causing Scenic to freeze mid-bite. "What are you doing all the way up here with a slab of flesh?"

Her mouth still open with the indecision of answering or fleeing, her eyes darted left and right in panic. "Uh..."

"Bring that here! You've got some questions to answer, young filly."

Around mid-day, Bone Marrow awoke to an empty room. His hoof reached over to where Scenic had been sleeping and noticed a worrying absence of his friend.

"Scenic?" Bone called out, "are you there?"

There was no answer. He looked around the room, careful to not move his eyes before realizing that it would be pointless anyway. He could move his ears to listen around the room for breathing, however. Still, he found nothing but empty air.

The colt grumbled to himself, pulling the sheets from his body and doing his best to find the floor with blind hooves swinging over the edge of the bed until they found purchase with the wooden floor. Smiling at his success, he cautiously slid from the mattress onto the hardwood; keeping one hoof on the mattress so he wouldn't stumble around even more blind than he already was. Moving from bedpost to bedpost he now assumed he was in the middle of the room. The door to the hallway was supposed to be opposite the post he now clung to, so he walked away from it with a single hoof outstretched so that the limb might run into something before his muzzle did.

Thankfully, the door opened to the friendly sound of Scenic's voice. "Hey, Storm..."

Bone's left eye twitched with reactive suspicion, causing a lance of pain to run through his face and for him to hold a hoof to his eye, hissing with pain. "Hey, Scenic."

"We... um," his friend began, "We might have some explaining to do."

Bone froze completely, not daring to move a muscle. "What do you mean?"

"Hello, Storm." A very familiar voice stated in gentle tone. "I don't believe we've met, yet."

Oh, I think we have, Bone thought back in reply, That's Deus Vult; or at least the pony that calls himself that.

"Would you mind if I came in? I have some questions that need answering."

He was less friendly now, and the question was in no way a polite request.

"Um... sure!" Bone replied with a small nervous smile, careful to ensure his eyes wouldn't be pained by too wide a grin. "Where are you?"

Scenic's hooves guided her friend to the mattress once more, urging Bone to climb on for a seat. Bone could hear the four legs of a wooden chair impacting the rug nearby and the scraping of plate armor as a pony sat down.

"A few of my guards have raised interesting contradictions with Sir Rich's account of the raid on Galloping Glades; you being the center of most of them. Tell me: why do you need meat?"

Bone looked in what he assumed to be Scenic's direction, his face frozen in a blank mask that hid his mounting anxiety.

"Also, what is the real story behind your eyes? Sir Rich states that the necromancer took them, the survivors state that the bandits are the culprits, and yet you yourself state it was your own parents. That's quite a miss match of information, and I aim to see it corrected with the truth."

Bone heard the noise of plate armor growing closer and assumed the nameless pony was leaning in. "I hope you wouldn't lie to a Captain of the Sun, would you?"

Deus Vult's real name was Pure Intent?

"So," Pure stated officially, "What is the reason for your filly friend to steal meat from the Manor's larder, and how were your eyes removed? Do not lie to me, Storm. I will know the truth sooner or later. Lying never works in the long run."

The young injured necromancer had only so long before his reply would become suspiciously late, so he decided to tell a judiciously modified version of the truth instead. He couldn't use the excuses that the other ponies had come up with in his defense and he couldn't tell the same lie he had already used. He would have to come up with something as close to the truth as possible...

"W-well... um..." Bone stammered, stalling for time, "Can a necromancer hear what you're saying if they know your name?"

"Not as far as I am aware, Storm..." Pure Intent answered with great suspicion laced through his tone.

"Uh..." Bone looked to Scenic apologetically, "Well, I... I was the necromancer's friend when he came to town..."

"His friend?" The captain was surprised by this answer. "How in Equestria did you manage that?"

Bone wasn't sure if he should smile in delight that the ruse had worked, or to frown that he was basing this ruse off of his friend. He went for a blank expression instead, doing his best to play the part of a pony in shock.

"Well, my mother found him out in the Everfree with a crossbow bolt in his heart. She came back to the house to tell me, and when we both went back out to find him the bolt was gone. The forest was all nasty and covered with ash all around him and we didn't know he was a bad pony then."

The necromancer tried to keep his voice as innocent as he could through his altered retelling of events. "We brought him home, washed him up and gave him something to eat. I showed him around town and he seemed like he was having fun and everything. I only started to worry when he asked if there was any meat in town. Ponies don't normally eat meat, right?"

More shifting of plate in what Bone assumed was a nod. "That's right. Go on."

"Well," Bone replied while taking a breath, "Eventually he wandered off into the forest in search of something to eat. While he was gone, bandits attacked the town and started killing everypony..."

He took a pause to breathe for a few moments, partially from the pain in his eyes and from the memories of him running through the burning town in search of Scenic.

"My parents were being killed in front of me by the bandits when the necromancer came back, and he just... their bodies melted into ash, piece by piece. I haven't seen anything like that from any other unicorn I knew, and I only made the connection then because his eyes started to glow really bright with those big blue skulls in them."

Pure Intent hummed with sympathy. "And your eyes? What happened to them?"

"Well, the necromancer left the town along with everypony else that survived. He raised a few of the dead bandits and used them to finish off the other surviving ones and escorted us away from the town. When Rich needed a way to get a letter to his mansion, the necromancer sent a bird he had eaten to do the job. I guess he wasn't expecting anypony like you to be here at the manor, because when Rich read the letter to him he ran off into the forest with his army."

Intent took a deep breath, his armor shifting once again. "Then why are your eyes cut out, Storm? Who did this to you?"

Bone bit his lips shut, looking to Scenic once again. Was he really going to have to throw one of his friends off a metaphorical cliff to save his own hide?

"You're safe now, Storm," Pure Intent replied gently, placing a cold armored hoof on Bone's leg. "No pony will hurt you while we're around, you understand?"

Bone choked on his words for a moment before blurting out, "I did; I was the pony that cut my eyes out!"

Intent's hoof immediately retracted with shock. "You what?!"

"He could look through my eyes, right?" Bone replied in a panic, hoping that his own desperation to throw the captain off track as well as his own narrow avoidance of placing one of his friends in danger would pay off, "I didn't want the necromancer to find out where we were, so I cut my own eyes out! He knew my name and everypony was treating me like I could turn into a spy at any moment, so I did what I thought was right so everypony else would be safe."

A breath of sympathy escaped Pure Intent's pursed lips as he leaned back into his chair. "Horrible. Just horrible..."

There was a tense pause in the room with only breathing being heard.

"So," Pure stated with cold detachment, "why was this filly carrying meat to your room, then?"

"U-uh, I wanted to see if it would help his eyes!" Scenic replied in a blurt of panic. "I remembered reading someplace that meat was good for sore muscles if you put it on wounds, so I figured I could try it with Storm!"

The captain's voice was pure skepticism. "Then why are you so guilty? You behave like you've been caught in a trap, young filly."

Bone couldn't think of a good reply to that. What could he say that would get Scenic out of trouble? He couldn't say he was hungry; normal ponies don't eat meat. Play it off as an innocent mistake? That wouldn't work either, not with the Knights on the hunt for a meat eating necromancer.

His lips trembled as he looked to his only friend. "S-Scenic?"

The mattress moved along with the scraping of armor, and he assumed that both ponies were looking at him now.

"I'm sorry," Bone numbly apologized, "I have to tell him the-"

"Don't you say anything, Storm!" Scenic replied in panic, clamping down Bone's mouth and knocking him onto his back. "Not one word!"

Bone yelped with muffled pain as his eyes once again hurt from the pressure on his muzzle and the sudden jolting of his eyes from being knocked over.

"One of you explain this instant what is going on!" Pure Intent demanded loudly, "What were you going to tell me?"

The two foals faced Pure Intent, frozen with fear and having no good excuses left. Tension was thick in the air, soon cut by the slow drawing of a sword.

"You will tell me where the necromancer is hiding this instant, do you understand me?"

The blade was leveled at Scenic's muzzle, the tip of the captain's sharpened sword cutting soft skin. The standoff was interrupted by a swift knock at the door, distracting Pure Intent.

"Not now!" The captain shouted, his blade moving away from Scenic's head to face the door.

"Captain, I'd like to have a few words with you," the silky voice of Obscenely Rich demanded, "Open up this instant!"

Pure Intent growled, sheathing his sword with a metallic click before pulling the door open. "What do you want, Rich?"

The golden pony marched through the doorway, shouldering the captain aside. "I, " he paused for dramatic effect, "have just been informed of something most unsettling."

"And what would that be?" Pure Intent challenged.

Obscenely Rich was delightfully pompous in his retort. "You, dear captain, do not have a warrant for this manor. You have taken up residence in my home without my express permission, as well as that of the Court of Canterlot. In effect, you are trespassing on my property."

The captain and noble stared at each other, Pure Intent's gaze withering and hateful. His mouth twitched from restrained anger at Rich's calm and superior demeanor.

"You would impede my investigation of Necromancy?" The captain challenged once again, his head lowering like an angry sentient battering ram. "You would stand in the way of law and order?"

"It is you, dear Captain, that breaks the law. I merely house the poor and unfortunate souls of Galloping Glades within my secure walls. You and your Knights have done nothing but harass, interrogate and torture poor victims of brutality that could've been easily prevented under your watch! I should report your entire group for gross negligence. It's almost criminal, I would say, counting all those ponies that didn't survive the attack."

Rich's grin was as wide as it was golden, his eyes sparkling with the certainty of his argument. "Would you like to leave my Manor of your own will, or would you like to be escorted?"

Pure Intent could only muffle a scream of his own frustration as he shouldered past the noble, storming away from the room. A few moments later the three remaining ponies could hear the angry shouting of a very livid Captain of the Sun.

Bone and Scenic practically melted into one another with relief. "Oh, thank Celestia..."

Rich gave a short laugh and corrected the foals, "Ah ah, you shouldn't be thanking her, you should be thanking me. I was the pony that just saved our hides, didn't I?"

"Rich," the young necromancer stated with a relieved grin, "I think I love you."

The three paused for a moment before sharing a stress releasing laugh as the Knights left the noble's Manor, the metallic grinding of the drawbridge lowering and soon followed by clatter of plate fading into the distance.

Author's Note:

Another Chapter! Hurrah!

Also, behold this magnificent Fan Art done by FimFiction user Backlash91 !

Give 'em some love, and be on the lookout for more Fanart! Any that I receive, I'll post in the Authors notes from now on.

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