• Published 27th Aug 2017
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The Blue Mage - Nebula Star



Gifted with extraordinary power, Apple Bloom must learn to control it and try not to lose herself in the process.

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Chapter 4: The Aspect of the Arcane

The Blue Mage
By Nebula Star

Chapter 4: Aspect of the Arcane
***

"Hey there, Twilight, Rainbow, Spike!"

Twilight smiled seeing Applejack waiting along the path out to the hill where they were supposed to meet Apple Bloom's dragon friend. The hill itself appeared completely empty however.

"Hey AJ! So, where's this dragon? He chicken out?" Rainbow asked walking by Twilight's side, opposite of Spike.

Applejack laughed; "Nah, he's up on the hill. He's just keeping up some kind of illusion so nopony sees him out here and panics. Y'all will be able to see him once we start up the hill."

"And where's Apple Bloom?" Twilight asked a little concerned.

"She's waiting with her friend."

Twilight raised a brow. "You trust him enough to leave him alone with Apple Bloom?"

"Well... yeah, Ah suppose Ah do, Twi. He's been right friendly, but Ah told you that already. So we waiting on Princess Luna then?"

"No need to wait on my account."

All three of them jumped at the powerful voice that still brought back unfortunate memories of the summer sun celebration.

"Oh, Princess Luna! When did you get here?" Twilight asked turning toward the black alicorn as she joined them on the path. She wasn"t nearly as intimidating when she wasn't wearing armor; Twilight noted, though the dragon eyes and fangs still gave her pause.

"Just now, Twilight Sparkle." Luna assured her. "My ethereal mist form is quite useful for traveling great distances quickly; though I'm sure my guards are rather upset that I've left them behind again." She gave a small smirk then nodded to each of the others in greeting. "Applejack, Rainbow Dash, and of course, Spike. It is good to see all of you. Though I wasn't actually expecting you, Rainbow Dash."

"Well I wasn't about to let Twi face some unknown dragon without me. What if he turned out to be an enemy?"

Luna smiled, one of her fangs showing. "Let us hope that he's not. Shall we?"

Applejack nodded. "Like Ah told this lot, Rekaj is just up the hill behind an illusion that hides him. You'll be able to see him once we start up the path." She told Luna then turned leading the way. Twilight followed just a step behind, right alongside Luna and Rainbow. They didn't have to go far before the air seemed to shimmer and the previously empty hilltop was suddenly host to a large blue dragon; his massive wings spread lazily to catch the morning breeze.

Twilight recognized at once that this dragon wasn't from their world. His wings were proportionally far larger than any dragon she'd ever seen. In fact, she estimated that even with the length of his neck and tail, his wingspan would still be half again greater than his length. Most of his body seemed to be covered in smooth blue scales which wasn't too unusual, nor were the thick plate scales that protected his chest and belly, but the overlapping diamond shaped scales covering his back and shoulders from his neck down most of the length of his tail were unlike any dragon she'd ever seen. And instead of a row of spines all down his back like the dragons native to their world usually had, he instead just had four curved spikes, webbed with the same transparent membrane as his wings, at the back of his head, running down his neck, and again at the tip of his tail.

He also wasn't nearly as large as most the adult dragons Twilight had ever seen. Even Spike's true adult form had been nearly half again larger, and his greed form even larger than that. Not that this dragon was small, of course. He was still nearly seven times the size of even Celestia.

At his side was Apple Bloom, still wearing the amplifier, and looking nervous, but hopeful as well.

He stood as they approached and gave a deep, respectful bow. "Princess Twilight Sparkle and Princess Luna; I am greatly honored to finally meet you in person." He said, his voice smooth and sincere sounding. "As well as you Rainbow Dash, and of course, Spike." He gave a respectful nod to his fellow dragon. "Allow me to introduce myself. I am Vele'Rekaj, Aspect of the Arcane, patriarch of the blue dragon flight, leader of the Arcanos Imperium, and ruler of the land of Azuria of the world Yuvari."

Luna bowed respectfully in return, prompting Twilight to do so as well. "Well met, noble dragon. Though I understand you already know a great deal about us."

"Yes, and I do apologize. When I first came here, I had no intention of ever revealing myself, but well..." he smiled nostalgically. "I must admit; I find your world incredibly charming. Rarely have I ever spent more than a few weeks exploring the worlds I find. Not all at once, mind you, I do have my own responsibilities. No, I'd spend time exploring whenever I could get away; a few hours here, a day or two there. But then I came here and before I knew it, I had been coming back here for nearly a year, and I realized, I had no intention of moving on. That's when I began to considered making contact."

"You chose a strange way to make contact." Twilight raised a brow questioningly, her voice more than a little suspicious. "Apple Bloom isn't exactly a diplomat."

"I suppose that's true. But then, I'm afraid I have been known to be a little impulsive. I've always been impressed with Apple Bloom, so when I saw that she was a little upset about how her summer was going I decided to see if I could help. And it has been some time since I had a mage, so I thought, 'why not offer her my power?'"

"And did it not cross your mind that she should have her family's approval at the very least?" Twilight challenged, her eyes narrowed. "She is a child after all!"

"Hey!" Apple Bloom objected, though she knew Twilight was right.

"Even if you have no ulterior motive," Twilight went on. "Our magic is an integral part of our being, and even the act of bonding Apple Bloom to your magic could have any number of unpleasant side effects. Side effects that the use of your magic could make even worse."

Rekaj lowered his head, looking a little contrite. "I do understand your concern, but in the countless millennia dragon kind has existed in my world, there has never once been a case of any negative side effects from the gift of a Sa'Dracori. I will not stop you from doing what you feel you need to, to make sure, but I don't believe you need to worry."

"Even so, I want to run Apple Bloom through a few tests before I'll allow her to use this magic of yours." Twilight told him firmly.

He nodded. "Very well."

"And should we find your magic is in fact harmful to Apple Bloom, will you remove it?"

"Of course;" he told her without hesitation. "But I would ask that you be absolutely certain before you ask me to do so; removing the Sa'Dracori now would be exceptionally painful for Apple Bloom and will scar her for life."

Twilight glared up at the dragon. "So, you're saying that not only did you enchant a little filly without her family's knowledge or consent; but you also enchanted her in a way that will cause her permanent harm to reverse? Did you even tell her that was the case?"

"He told me." Apple Bloom cut in. "He told me all the good and the bad that came with it before Ah decided."

Twilight sighed. "Even so, Apple Bloom, he should not have even made the offer without your family's knowledge and consent."

Apple Bloom frowned looking down, while Twilight turned her gaze back up to the dragon.

"Applejack," Rekaj spoke up. "Honestly, if Apple Bloom had told you and I had explained everything, would you have allowed it?"

Applejack frowned. "Honestly Ah'd have to say no," she admitted. "Maybe after we'd had a chance to get to know ya, I'd have allowed it. But Ah recon even then Ah'd be a bit hesitant."

Rekaj just nodded, smiling. "I've found over time that it's almost always easier to ask forgiveness than to ask permission."

"Just because it's easier, doesn't mean it's right." Twilight said firmly, glaring up at him.

"I agree that young Apple Bloom's family should have been informed before-hoof," Luna cut in, stepping between them as she tried to cut the tension. "But what is done is done. Let us focus on moving forward from here."

Twilight sighed, but nodded. "You're right, Luna, I'm sorry."

Luna nodded and turned, focusing on Rekaj. "While I also do not approve of you giving Apple Bloom this magic without her family's approval, I understand you've already been in our world for some time without our knowledge, and have not harmed anypony in that time. I am, therefore, willing to give you the benefit of the doubt. Until you prove otherwise, I will trust that you mean the ponies of this land no harm.

"As for Apple Bloom; so long as we don't find anything that could prove harmful to her, I have no objections to her keeping the magic you have given her."

"Thank you, Princess Luna. As I said before, I don't think there's any cause to worry. Usually if the recipient's own magic conflicts with the Sa'Dracori, it will be rejected."

"And what happens then?" Twilight demanded.

He gave her a wry smile. "It gives a powerful lash-back to the dragon giving the Sa'Dracori. It's quite painful, actually. I was a little worried Apple Bloom's magic would reject it, in fact. I've felt that kind of lash-back before and it's not an experience I'd want to repeat. But if anything, her magic seemed to welcome my Sa'Dracori; that's part of why I don't think you need to worry."

"Well, for Apple Bloom's sake, let us hope you are right." Luna cut in again before Twilight could say anything. The younger princess was clearly feeling very protective of Apple Bloom. "Now, as I said, I'm willing to trust you, that you mean us no ill will for now." Luna went on. "And for the time being you are welcome to stay here in Equestria as a guest of the crown for as long as you desire."

"Thank you, princess." He said, giving a small bow.

Luna nodded. "However, there is a matter I wish to discuss with you; your spells that allow you to spy on our ponies from afar.

"I understand that you did not wish to reveal yourself at the time, but now that we know of you, I cannot condone the continued use of such spells. Doing so is an invasion of our subjects' privacy. I must insist that if you wish to continue to... observe our ponies, that you do so openly."

Rekaj sighed. "I understand, Princess Luna. I have considered revealing myself, but I'm afraid that if I did, it would cause a panic."

"I understand your concern, most ponies would find you rather intimidating, but I'm afraid there's little choice."

"I do have another form I can take, but honestly that form would likely cause just as much of a stir."

"You're a shapeshifter?" Twilight asked, her curiosity briefly overcoming her protective feelings toward Apple Bloom.

"Yes, though only between those two forms; my true form as I am now, and my human form."

"You can be human?"

Rekaj blinked looking surprised. "Yes... you know of humans? I didn't think there were humans in this world."

Twilight shook her head. "Not in this world, no. But there's another world I've been to where everyone is human. You're right though, it would still cause quite a stir if you were to walk into ponyville as a human.

"Hey, RJ!" Apple Bloom said suddenly as an idea occurred to her. "What if you used one of your illusions!? You could still use your spells to see and hear from a distance, but when you do make an illusion of yourself as a pony wherever you are. That way you won't be spying on them without them knowing."

Rekaj looked at her in surprise then slowly smiled, shaking his head. "In all the years I've known those spells; I never once thought to combine them in such a way." He laughed. "Very good Apple Bloom, but I think I might be able to take it even further." He closed his eyes. For a moment, nothing happened, then a blue form took shape in front of him quickly resolving itself into that of an average pegasus stallion, his coat was a light blue, with a darker blue mane and tail, both on the shorter side. On his flanks were the same blue pattern as the Sa'Dracori on Apple Bloom's shoulder.

The Illusionary stallion opened his eyes and smiled. "How's this?" He asked, Rekaj's voice coming from the illusion's mouth.

"An impressive illusion." Luna said looking over the stallion. "However, ponies may wonder should any bump into you and find nothing there."

"Nu uh." Apple Bloom said with a grin and without hesitation jumped up to stand on the stallion's back. "See! RJ's illusions are solid! It even feels real! Fur, warmth, everything!"

Luna's eyes were wide. "That is impressive."

"You'd still be deceiving ponies though." Twilight pointed out.

"I won't lie to anypony, should they ask about me I will gladly tell them the truth." He told them sincerely. "Would this be acceptable?"

Luna thought for a moment, then nodded. "Yes, I find it acceptable. After all, I use similar illusions in the dream realm to avoid causing more fear in the ponies I seek to help."

"You do?" Twilight asked, surprised.

Luna smiled ruefully. "Yes, it would seem that Nightmare Moon coming into a pony's dream rarely has a calming effect."

"Oh... right." Twilight looked back at Rekaj and sighed. "Very well, I will allow it as well then."

The pony Rekaj nodded. "Thank you, Princess."

Luna smiled. "Well, it has been most interesting meeting you, Vele'Rekaj. But I'm afraid I should be on my way back to Canterlot, I need to inform my sister on these matters. Out of curiosity, how far away could you maintain your pony self?"

Rekaj smiled. "My magic is not limited by distance; The initial casting would have to be within sight, but once it is cast my illusion could travel any distance from me without problem."

"In that case, I would like to invite you to visit Canterlot should you get the chance. I'm sure my sister would enjoy meeting you."

He nodded. "I would be glad to."

Luna smiled. "Well then, I bid thee farewell for now." She said then turned to Twilight and spoke softly. "Princess Twilight, I know you're worried, and I understand you care for Apple Bloom and fear for her safety. I'm not saying you have to trust him, but do try to keep your anger in check."

Twilight looked down. "I will, Luna."

She smiled. "And do visit Canterlot, sometime as well. I know Celestia always adores your visits."

Looking up, Twilight gave a sincere smile. "I will."

With one last smile, Luna gave a respectful nod to the others present, and her mane enveloped her, becoming a cloud of energy that sped off toward Canterlot.

Once Luna was gone, Twilight turned back to Rekaj and his pony illusion. Resolutely she took a few steps forward so they were face to face, Rainbow staying right at her side. "I'm going to give you a chance. But understand, if you cause Apple Bloom any harm..."

"There's no need for threats, princess." Rekaj said in a calm gentle tone. "I would never wish to cause Apple Bloom any harm."

Twilight fixed him with a hard stare for a few moments more. Finally, she sighed. "I hope you really mean that." She said softly, then turned to Apple Bloom.

"Come along, Apple Bloom, I want to get you checked over as soon as possible."

She nodded. "Okay, I'll see you later, RJ," she said, waving goodbye to her dragon friend. He smiled and waved in return.

"I hope to hear good news when I see you next."

"For Bloom's sake, Ah hope so as well." Applejack said following Twilight and Apple Bloom. Rainbow and Spike following as well.

"You going to come with, AJ?" Twilight asked as they reached the bottom of the hill.

Applejack nodded. "Yeah, I want to make sure Bloom is going to be alright."

"What about you two?" She asked looking over at Rainbow and Spike.

"I'll come with." Spike said, "I do have a good amount of experience with magic after all."

"And you?" She asked Rainbow.

"I'd like to, but I probably should get to the afternoon weather checks. I'm a little late as it is." Rainbow told her. "I'll stop by the library later, though." She said and gave Twilight a quick kiss. "Later." With one last smile, she took off.

Twilight watched her go, a soft smile of her own on her lips. It was a few moments before she realized that Applejack, Apple Bloom and Spike were all staring at her in surprise. She blushed then, knowing that none of them knew what had happened that morning. "Rainbow asked me out this morning..." She said in explanation.

"She did?" Applejack said in surprise. "And you said yes?"

"She's planning our first official date this Friday."

Apple Bloom's eyes widened in surprise. "Does that mean Rainbow is your special somepony!?"

Twilight smiled, blushing a bit more. "Yeah, I guess it does."

"Well that's great, sugarcube;" Applejack said smiling. "I know Rainbow has had a thing for you for a while now. Though, to be honest, I didn't know you'd be interested in another mare."

"Neither did I." Spike added with a smirk. "And I live with her."

Twilight laughed... "Yeah, Rainbow didn't think I would be either. But I don't think it really matters to me; mare or stallion." She shrugged. "Love is love; as far as I'm concerned. Rainbow... when she told me she has feelings for me, I decided I'd give her a chance. I'd give us a chance."

"Well Ah'll bet that just made her day."

Twilight blushed again. "Yeah, probably."

"Well Ah think it's great!" Apple Bloom said, and then surprised Twilight by jumping up and hugging her around the neck.

"Thanks, Apple Bloom. I guess we'll see how it goes. For now, let's get to the hospital so we can see about getting you checked over."

"The hospital? Ah thought you were just going to do it?" Apple Bloom said a little confused. "Don't you know more about magic than anyone?"

Twilight smiled. "I may know about magic, as well as how to do the scans myself. But that doesn't mean I really know what to look for. I'm not really medically trained."

"Oh, okay. Ah guess that makes sense."

"So, let's get going."

~~~

The walk to the hospital was a long one since it was nearly on the opposite side of town from the farm. But though Apple Bloom was nervous, she was also excited. She was confident Rekaj was right about his magic not harming her and though she knew there was a chance he could be wrong, she was more nervous about what the scans Twilight wanted done would entail.

It turned out it wasn't much. Mostly she just stood very still and answered questions while Dr. Scalpel used several expensive looking machines as well as his own magic to scan her over and over. She had no idea what half the scans were for, but Twilight seemed to, and insisted on each one.

Finally, they were done and together with her sister, Twilight, and Spike, they waited for him to analyze the results.

Apple Bloom was just starting to get bored when the door opened and the doctor stepped back in.

"So what's the verdict, Doc?" Applejack asked, sounding a little nervous.

Dr. Scalpel smiled reassuringly. "Well, as far as I can tell, this new magic will have no harmful side effects on Apple Bloom."

Apple Bloom grinned, looking up at her sister excitedly.

"You're certain?" Twilight asked. "It's not interfering with her earth pony magic?"

He nodded. "I'm as certain as I can be. This magic is interacting with her innate magic; but not in any way that would be harmful."

"What do you mean?"

"Well, they seem to be strengthening each other. In fact, I dare say that this new magic is actually beneficial to her. It's really intriguing. I'll send the scan results to a specialist I know in Manehattan just to be sure I didn't miss anything, but I'm fairly confident that Apple Bloom will be just fine."

Twilight took a deep breath and let it out sounding relived. "Alright, thank you for your time, Dr. Scalpel."

He nodded. "Of course," he said and turned to Apple Bloom. "You've been a wonderful patient Apple Bloom. I hope not to see you here anytime soon." He said with a wink, making Apple Bloom giggle. "Applejack, Spike; always a pleasure." He said then left the room.

Apple Bloom looked up at Twilight hopefully. "So?"

Twilight sighed. "Alright, you can keep the magic, Apple Bloom."

"Yes! Thank you, Twilight!" She said, hugging her.

Twilight smiled, hugging her back. "Just be careful. Learning magic can be dangerous at times, so especially at first, just listen to your teacher, and don't try to experiment on your own, okay?"

"Okay."

"An Rekaj said he wanted to teach you some protective spells." Applejack added. "Now he said they were a might difficult, but ah want you to do your best to learn them alright?"

Apple Bloom nodded. "Ah will, sis!"

Applejack smiled and gave her little sister a hug as well. "You have fun, and make good use of your magic, ya hear?"

"Ah will."

Author's Note:

If anyone is wondering exactly what Rekaj looks like, unfortunately I haven't done any art of him, but I have done this drawing of one of his daughters: Vele'Senna. And since there isn't much difference between male and female dragons in Yuvari, Rekaj would look very similar.

A side note about Rekaj; the stories he's from, he's actually a side character and doesn't even show up for the first couple stories, though he is mentioned. Even when he does finally show up he plays a minor role until much later on. His first mate, Vele'Rella, and daughter, Vele'Senna, both play much bigger roles in those stories.

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