• Published 1st Jul 2017
  • 16,907 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.

  • ...

Second Guessing

The room had slowly returned to normal after several minutes. Bone remained in the same seat, running over what had happened in his mind while Scenic tried her best to calm him down.

Mutterings came from the room that Celestia and her nobles had exited to, sometimes raising when somepony shouted or gasped. The young colt had no idea what the elite of Canterlot were talking about, but he assumed it had something to do with his continued ability to live. He doubted they would leave him in peace after the decorated noble brought up his use as a weapon against enemies of Equestria, but Bone still wanted no part in it. He wanted to be left alone, to live as normal a life as he could with his special talent. He didn't want ponies to hunt him for centuries like the other Necromancers, but what would keep ponies away from him?

Bone looked to his concerned friend, wondering if he really wanted to be alone for the rest of his life. Did he want to hide away somewhere, hoping every day that nopony would find him? If a bounty hunter found him, he would have to kill them and move to some other place and hope for the same thing. What kind of life would that be?

The void inside of him brought the noble's request up to the front of the necromancer's thoughts. The noble had said he would be a hero. Would that mean nopony would want to kill him anymore, or would he be facing a different kind of threat entirely? Heroes in their stories were always fighting monsters, doing what they could to hold back the horrors that would destroy nice ponies.

He sighed. If he was going to be a hero, ponies would see him as a monster more than a friend no matter what he did. He was a Necromancer, no matter which side he chose. Raising the dead, killing ponies and causing misery was his special talent.

"Bone?" Scenic gently asked, "Are you alright?"

He shook his head, looking up to his only friend. "I'm not."

"What's wrong?"

The colt rested his head on the silver table, moving a plate away with his magic. "What's the point of a cutie-mark if all it does is get you killed over and over again?"

She looked towards the gilded door for a second with worry, "Bone, I don't think it's going to be that bad. Maybe they'll decide they like you?"

Bone nearly stared straight through Scenic, "What about the other necromancers? How much did ponies like them for the centuries they were chased and killed?" He shook his head, "No, they're in that room deciding what the best way to kill me is."

Scenic checked the room, noting the few guards that lingered. "Hey," She whispered, "What if we went outside and explored Canterlot together?"

His ears perked up a bit, "Aren't we supposed to stay here?"

The filly's hoof wavered, "Eh, nopony said we had to, did they? Besides, what are the guards going to do; stop us?"

The young necromancer smiled, his head lifting from the table. "Alright, that sounds a lot better than sitting around here waiting for my doom."

The two jumped from their chairs onto the polished marble tile of the floor, making their way to the exit opposite the conversing nobles. Bone smiled from behind his hood, the white muzzle reminding the guards of death itself paying them a visit and soon parted ways, unbarring the door.

"Where should we go first?"

"I dunno, I've never been to Canterlot before."

The two friends traveled down the golden steps of the palace into the city proper, ponies now having been given permission by Princess Celestia to resume their normal activities. Bone was having doubts about their plan now, given that hiding his eyes wasn't easy.

"What's a donut?" Scenic asked, pointing to a nearby storefront.

"Pony Joe's?" Bone added with equal interest. "Should we see how it goes?"

"Do you think that's their actual name?"

"Who, the store owner?"

Scenic shrugged, "There could be worse names for a pony. Though, being named Pony Joe would be kind of lame."

"Isn't Joe some kind of... drink? I think i've heard of a 'cup of Joe'."

They decided that exploring the oddity would be better than standing at the base of the stairs simply talking about it and walked across the city square's fountain. It depicted an all too familiar Princess Celestia in her golden armor battling some kind of monster from history's past.

"Hey Bone, what do you think that thing is?" Scenic asked, pointing to the statue.

The necromancer looked up, noting Celestia. "Probably her killing something for being 'evil'."

"What if it really was evil?"

He shook his head, "I really don't want to talk about Celestia, Scenic. Let's just enjoy Canterlot while I still can, alright?"

The pegasus nodded, "Okay Bone, sorry for bringing it up so soon."

A small bell chimed as the door to Pony Joe's opened, swinging inward with the push of the friends' combined hooves.

"Welcome!" A cheerful voice greeted the door before finding nopony standing there. Confused, he looked down and spotted two new customers. "What'll it be?"

Bone was about to reply, but decided against it. How long would it be before somepony screamed Necromancer?

"What's the best thing?" Scenic asked, "We're new to Canterlot."

The coffee colored stallion grinned, pointing to a large menu above him that ran along the wall. "Take your pick, plenty to choose from. You two want a stool or a booth?"

Bone slowly mouthed confusion, staring at all the different items. Double Fudge Sundae, Triple Macchiato Espresso Supreme, Banana Split, Double Banana Strawberry Twist... the list went on and on, and the young colt had never even come across half the words before.

"Uh," Scenic replied for the both of them, "A booth?"

The stallion pointed to the nearby window seats, "Right over there. Miss Sundae will be along with a menu to help you both out. Enjoy your visit to Canterlot!"

"Uh, thanks..." Bone mentioned idly, half aware of what he even said. He blinked, clearing the mystical words in front of him from his mind before following Scenic to their 'booth'.

The seats were bouncy, well maintained and comfortable as well. The foals' heads barely came over the tabletop, but they could see each other just fine. The window outside showed passing ponies and carriages going on with their day as if nothing was wrong, though more than a few gave a worried glance towards the palace.

They probably think I'm still inside, Bone realized.

"Hey there!" A cheerful mare announced, placing two large pieces of parchment in front of each foal, "First time in Pony Joe's?"

Bone nodded, not wanting to speak much.

Scenic returned the polite cheerful tone, "Yeah, we saw the name and didn't know what to think, so we stopped by!"

"Do you want me to get your cloak, dear?" The waitress offered.

The necromancer shook his head quickly, "No thanks, I'm alright."

"Aw," she tutted, "A bit shy? That's okay dear, you're safe here in Pony Joe's. Can I get you two anything to drink while you pick something from the menu?"

"Um... I'll have water?"

The waitress looked to Bone, who was now using his parchment as a shield against the waitress's gaze. "Water for me, too."

She nodded, "I'll be right back, Let me know when you're ready to order!"

Quickly walking off to help other ponies that had wandered in, Bone breathed a sigh of relief as the waitress left. His menu fell flat on the table.

"This was a bad idea," Bone nervously whispered, "If anypony notices who I am, everypony is going to scream and run out of the door!"

"Bone, you have to relax a little. Nopony thinks you're out and about. You probably just seem shy, like the waitress said."

He took a deep breath, closing his eyes and covering his head with the menu. "This is a terrible, horrible, impossibly bad idea!"

Hoofsteps came closer as the waitress returned, hovering two glasses of water over to each of the seated foals. "And here's your waters... did you find anything you like?" She looked nervously over at the hooded foal, worried that something was wrong. "Are you alright, dear?"

"I'm fine," Bone squeaked out, shielding himself further from her sight. "I'll take whatever you think is best."

The waitress patted the colt on his head, "Poor dear, I hope your stay in Canterlot isn't horrible the entire time you're here." She looked over to Scenic, her customer service smile returning, "What'll it be for you?"

Scenic had no idea what she was looking at either, bewilderment apparent on her face. "Uh... whatever's good?"

She tapped Bone on his shoulder, "Would you mind if I took the menus, dear?"

The waitress was reminding Bone all to much of Scenic's mother, the image of a crossbow bolt through her brain flashing in his mind. He started to shake.

"Oh... I suppose you can hold onto it for now. I'll be back!"

She walked off once more, though it did little to calm the young necromancer. He saw himself again in the forest, pulling a bolt from his heart one agonizing tug at a time. He felt a sword go through his face, his spine splitting in two and gritted his teeth. He felt his ribs cracking, his heart shredding as he lay on the ground coughing blood onto the leaves beneath him.

"Bone?" Scenic asked, "Do you want to leave?"

Her necromancer friend looked up, his eyes distant and glazed over with an icy frost. "How am I supposed to live a normal life, Scenic? Look at me! Look at this place; I don't belong here, anypony can see that."

"What are you talking about, Bone? Of course you belong!" Scenic replied, moving from her seat around the table to sit next to her friend. "What's wrong?"

Bone held Scenic in his hooves, trembling. "I shouldn't be alive, Scenic. Your mother should still be alive! I can still see her in my mind, I can see my own deaths flashing in front of me!"

Scenic's ears folded as her friend became more distraught, "We should go someplace else, okay? You need to calm down, or you'll give yourself away."

He pulled her close into an icy hug as the waitress approached. She broke into a smile. "Aw, so that's why you're so shy! You two must be on a date; that's adorable!"

"Eheh..." Scenic blurted, "Yeah! A date..."

Two large and ornately decorated bowls were placed on the table, each carrying some kind of dessert looking treat.

"Two Banana Splits on the house for your first visit to Canterlot!" The waitress cheerfully explained. "Can I get you two anything else while I'm here?"

Scenic shook her head, "No thanks, ma'am, we're good for now."

"If you need anything else," the waitress replied in a sing-song voice, "Let me know-w!"

The filly did her best to turn Bone's head towards the newly arrived food. "Hey, look at this stuff for a moment, okay?"

Bone's shaking lessened for a moment, his mind now distracted in a vain attempt to comprehend what he was even looking at.

Scenic picked up a spoon in her mouth, "Wanna try it?"

The necromancer looked around the room, noticing that nopony else had paid them any attention. He gave a pained sigh, picking up a spoon of his own with his magic and guided it unsteadily towards whatever a 'Banana Split' was. His spoon carved through the treat easily enough and Bone looked at what now sat upon his spoon like some kind of odd growth.

He looked over to his friend, noting that she was already working on her second bite, and decided to give it a try. It was cold, but delicious at the same time. His eyes widened and a smirk dawned on his face, his worries fading to the back of his mind for the moment.

When Bone Marrow had calmed down and began to relax, both friends enjoyed their treat at Pony Joe's without a single scream of terror.

Bone and Scenic both nursed slightly bulging bellies, flopped over on each side of the booth's couch.

"I think it's poison," Bone grumbled, "I think I'm gonna die again..."

Scenic rolled onto her back, using the original backrest as a cushion for the side of her face. "I think we ate too much."

"Is that a thing?" Bone asked, "I didn't know you could eat too much food..."

The door's bell chimed lightly as a newcomer entered the diner. A quiet round of gasps sounded out and caused Bone to worry.

"Princess Celestia!" the stallion behind the counter gasped, "To what do I owe the honor of your company?"

The necromancer's eyes shot wide and he curled into a painful ball underneath the table, hoping that his cloak would make him harder to spot if he closed his eyes.

"Have you seen a small colt and filly recently? One of them wears a finely crafted outfit of blue and white, as well as a cloak?"

"Yes, your highness!" The stallion eagerly offered, pointing directly to Bone's booth, "They should be right over there."

Celestia nodded politely, "Thank you, Pony Joe. Your family has always been a great help."

He nodded, "We Joe's gotta help everypony, ya know?"

The tall princess walked over to the booth that Bone hid underneath, her horn lighting brightly. The glow shifted from one side to the other as she hummed, soon looking underneath.

"Ah, there you are."

Bone and Scenic were pulled away from their hiding spot and held in Celestia's magic, midair. "Enjoying your escape?"

Bone shrank in the light, covering his eyes to avoid anypony seeing them now that he was the center of attention.

"I just wanted Bone-- Eh, Berry to feel better!" Scenic blurted, narrowly avoiding announcing her friend's name to the public.

Celestia raised an eyebrow, "You're both coming back to the Palace."

"Why don't you leave us alone!?" Scenic shouted, her temper flaring as she dangled in the air. "Can't you see what you're doing to him? He was happy just a moment ago, and you came in and ruined it!"

The princess was surprised at the outburst, looking to her nearby subjects with a mask of calm, "Not now."

"I've never seen my friend this happy the entire time I've known him," Scenic continued, "Just leave him alone!"

Celestia pulled the filly close to her muzzle. "We're going to have a talk, Scenic. Alone."

Bone was now back at the palace in his chambers. His skeletons remained unharmed, acting as his guards though he felt no comfort from their presence. The silken bed sheets had been pulled away as Bone hid underneath the bed, wrapped in a cocoon of safety.

His mind raced with terrible possibilities; of all the things that Celestia could be doing to his friend. She would never leave him alone, Celestia would always hunt him, always kill him until he was thrown into a volcano and gone for good. Bone was growing more certain of it with each passing second.

A knock came at the door and Bone switched to a skeleton's view to see who it was. It was Celestia, of course. His anger bristled, the room growing cold.

The princess entered, noting the chill with caution. "Bone Marrow?" She called into the room. "I know you're in here."

The young necromancer remained silent. She would get no reply from him.

"I was wrong about you," the princess added with a tinge of guilt in her voice. "Will you speak with me?"

Bone possessed one of his skeletons, having them shake their head and point towards the hallway in a gesture for her to leave.

"Can I tell you something?"

This wasn't the same Celestia that had been trying to find a reason to kill him earlier that day, Bone noticed. Something was off. He lowered the hoof of his skeleton, using it as a proxy between them.

"I saw something that I haven't seen in my entire life today," Celestia continued, "I saw a necromancer with a friend. I saw you and your friend Scenic enjoying time together and it reminded me of somepony close to my heart."

The room grew even colder, Bone assuming that Celestia was trying to manipulate him.

"I didn't pay attention to the signs. I didn't realize that she was upset, that she needed my help, like your friend did."

Celestia sighed, moving closer to the center of the room. "She told me, in her own little ways. How the night would grow a little bit darker; how she spoke to me in passing. Small, tiny things that I was too careless to notice."

The young necromancer was still wary of Celestia's intentions, but the room warmed as he listened.

"It's the tiny things that get a pony in the end, I realize. It's not the sudden outburst that's the problem, it's not just one event that causes a pony to give in to madness..."

She looked underneath the bed, directly into Bone's glowing blue eyes as he pulled away. "It's the day to day that drives a pony insane. I saw that when you left the palace today. I witnessed your struggle and was reminded of my sister, Luna. She was the same way, but she never showed it. She kept it bottled up, hidden away from me."

Celestia shook her head, sighing. "No, it wasn't hidden. I simply didn't care to notice."

"Why are you telling me this?" Bone questioned.

The princess of the sun shared a moment with the young necromancer, their eyes locked on each other.

"I made a mistake when I banished my sister; when I banished Nightmare Moon. I couldn't see her pain and I used the Elements of Harmony against her when they had been trying to teach me a lesson."

Bone returned a look of confusion, prompting Celestia to continue.

"My sister was always the better of us; she was Kind, she was Generous... she was far more forgiving than I was."

The princess offered a hoof to Bone, sliding it along the rug towards him. "I'd like to be a better sister to her, but I need to know something first..."

The frost of the room returned as Bone suspected this would be the moment that Celestia had been building up to, to use him for some purpose.

"Can you see if she is still alive? Can you look through Luna's eyes and tell me she's alright?"

He blinked, completely taken by surprise by the request. "You want me to..."

Celestia nodded. "Would you do me this kindness?"

Memories of being killed by the Royal Guard and of his eyes being cut out to avoid Celestia's knights came to mind and Bone clenched his jaw shut, the room becoming arctic.

"Why should I?" Bone seethed, "Why would you come here, asking me for a favor when all you've done is make my life miserable?"

Celestia pulled her hoof away, looking to the floor. "I understand if you don't wish to help me, Bone Marrow. I've been a monster to you. I realize that only too late for it to make a difference."

"You're just going to kill me anyway, Celestia." Bone hissed, "Did you really think I would help you when my life is still up for a bunch of rich ponies to decide?"

The princess' ears folded down, her stoic mask dropping. "I don't want to see what happened to my sister happen to you as well, not after what I've seen today. Not after the mistakes I've already made."

The necromancer shook his head. "It's too late for that, Celestia. You've had ponies trying to kill or imprison me ever since I got my cutie-mark, and now you're coming to me, hoping that I'll help you see Princess Luna again?"

Windows had turned to ice, his skeletons had begun to freeze solid and the door was being frozen shut as Bone's anger grew.

"For all you've done to me, I hope that you'd never see your sister again!"

In an effort to see if she was already dead, Bone Marrow called on a certain name to see if his spiteful wishes were already true.

Princess Luna

Bone's vision swam through an endless void of black speckled with dots of white, soon ending on an expansive field of grey rock.

His vision moved, and he saw the dark hooves of a pony wondering what was happening to them. Luna looked up to a large orb in the sky, Blue and green with shades of brown mixed together like a flowing work of art.

Bone sat down, taken aback by the sights he was witnessing. His breathing slowed, his temper cooled and the room grew warm with water dripping from the ceiling.

"It's..." Bone muttered.

"What is it," Celestia desperately demanded, "Is she alive? What do you see?"

He could see clouds moving like wisps, shining lights of green and blue along the edges of the orb that intermixed with the light around them. He spotted tiny lights in the dark corners of the orb...

Luna blinked, pointing her hoof towards a mass of green. She then looked down to the dull rock below her as her hoof began writing a message in the dirt.

I'm sorry, sister.

Bone's sight ended, drawing him back to his own body. Celestia had moved her face down closer to the colt, watching him intently.

"What did you see?" She asked hopefully.

The necromancer's cold eyes turned to the Princess of the Sun, a chill returning to the room as the void grew within him.


Author's Note:

A new chapter!

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