• Published 26th Nov 2017
  • 3,676 Views, 111 Comments

On the Peak of Aris - milesprower06

With her first E.U.P. squad formed and beyond expectations, Captain Berrytwist now turns her attention to the wrongs she committed beyond Equestria.

  • ...

An Extra Special Kind Of Thing

"Alright, Captain Celaeno, I believe that's the last of it." Major Speartip said, as the last of the supplies were hoisted up by the crane as they made the final preparations to depart just outside the main gates of Hippogriffia.

"I can't believe we did it that fast. Three-and-a-half weeks. I believe that's six days ahead of schedule, even with the scattered cannonball damage. Sometimes I amaze even myself." Lieutenant Rivet said.

"Is that hubris I detect, Lieutenant?" Fizzlepop asked.

"Not at all, ma'am. Reality." Rivet replied with a smirk. Captain Fizzlepop laughed.

"Well, one thing's for sure, when we get back to Ponyville, first round is on me. That includes you and your crew, Captain Celaeno. That's the best ship-spinning I've ever seen."

"Don't mention it. Now I know the precise maneuver the next time I need to launch a unicorn 550 feet." The parrot privateer replied.

The front gates creaked open, and Captain Skyranger came out.

"Captain Berrytwist?" He asked, and Fizzlepop turned to him.

"Yes, Captain?" She asked, stepping up to him.

"Her Majesty Queen Novo would like to see you in the throne room before you depart. If you would please come with me."

Captain Fizzlepop's heart skipped a beat. It took her a moment to actually get her hooves to move and follow Stratus through the front gates.

They continued through the main street at a steady pace, and Fizzlepop took a look around at the absolutely amazing work that had been done to Hippogriffia in the past twenty five days. Homes had been reconstructed and repaired, majestic arches loomed over the main street to the castle. It wasn't as pristine as it was when she first came here months ago, but compared to the ruin they left it in, the difference was night and day. Hippogriffs of all ages went about their evening, and that was the most important part. The city had become functional again.

The two guard captains ascended the steps to the front doors of the castle. In the foyer, there was a magnificent fountain that was once again working. She felt so different now. The last time she walked these corridors, it was on a trail of deceit. But now, her team had done this. All of them had helped this city heal, and in her case, had helped defend it from those who were still after its treasure. The stragglers who got away would surely spread the word that Thunderhead had met his demise at Mount Aris, so that would probably keep the remnants of the Storm Fleet away. And if not, Rivet had told her that the first addition the Hippogriffs were going to make to the cliffsides were cannons and ballista siege weapons.

They walked around the right side of the fountain, up a wide round set of stairs, and continued straight towards a second set of tall double doors. The two guards standing there opened them for their passage, and they set their hooves and claws in the throne room. It was magnificent. Three chandeliers ran the length of the ceiling, and a shimmering pearl throne was elevated at the back wall. Princess Skystar came trotting through a side door, and immediately spotted Fizzlepop.

"Oh my gosh, there you are! We were hoping they'd catch you before you guys left. It took a week, but I finally found it this afternoon! I finally found it!" She exclaimed, happily coming up to the pair.

"Found what?" Fizzlepop asked, smiling at the ecstatic hippogriff who had kept her fed nearly every night and morning.

"I knew sooner or later there would be an excuse to turn myself back into a seapony for some swimming. I had to cover an awful lot of seafloor and overturn a lot of planks, but..." Skystar paused, spread out her left wing, and stretched it out to Fizzlepop, offering her ball chain necklace with the skeletal tip of her horn. "I found it."

Fizzlepop's eyes widened and her mouth dropped slightly as Skystar came up, took the necklace in her claws, and put it over her head and around her neck, where it rested on her chest plate.

"I'm just sorry I couldn't find your helmet." The Princess apologized. Fizzlepop was dumbfounded.

"Are you kidding? Don't apologize for that. That can be replaced. Just... Just..." Fizzlepop started to fumble with her words, so just leaned forward and embraced Skystar, who immediately returned it. "Thank you so much."

"And that isn't all we summoned you for." Came another voice, and Fizzlepop and Skystar separated to see Queen Novo come through the same side door, with two guards behind her carrying a chest. The monarch came up next to Skystar, Fizzlepop and Stratus gave a bow, and the guards set the chest down next to her.

"Thank you guards. Please leave us." Novo said, and the two guards immediately bowed and left with Stratus.

"Captain, I believe I owe you an apology." Queen Novo began. "You have changed, even though it took me longer than you deserved to make myself see it."

"No apology needed, Your Majesty. I tried to steal from your kingdom, and I was just correcting my mistakes." Fizzlepop replied.

"Yes, and you have more than paid us back. Skystar has told me how you two talked about your life, both before and after the Storm King, over the breakfasts and dinners she brought you throughout your time here. Of how you were desperate enough to believe his promise, of how you believed a unicorn was nothing without their horn, and I have to say I disagree, Captain Fizzlepop Berrytwist. Since you've returned, I've seen what you are without a horn. How selfless, honorable, brave, and friendly you are. You put everything on the line for us. You saved my daughter, you saved my city, and that is something I will not soon forget."

Queen Novo reached over and unlatched the chest that had been set down next to her. She slowly opened it, and with both claws, carefully took out the Pearl of Transformation.

"Now Captain, if you will, I would now like to give something back to you."

She slowly held the Pearl out, and it began to glow brighter as it started to float inches above her claws. Dual beams of sparkling red energy slowly spiraled towards Fizzlepop in a helix. The glowing energy spun around her neck, and made it's way up. Before she knew it, Queen Novo and Princess Skystar vanished behind a blinding white light. Flizzlepop slammed her eyes closed, and felt her entire head start to tingle.

She wasn't sure how long it lasted, but eventually, the tingling slowly decreased to nothing, and the light faded, allowing her to open her eyes to see the throne room and see the Queen and Princess again.

"Well, what do you think? Huh? Huh?" Skystar excitedly asked.

"Think about what?" Fizzlepop asked, shaking her head, still feeling a little lightheaded.

"Well just look, silly Fizzy!" Skystar said, coming up to her and lifting up her necklace, which now had nothing on it.

...Which now had nothing on it...!

Fizzlepop's breath left her as Skystar held up a small mirror in front of her face, and she saw her horn completely intact on her forehead. She drew in short shallow breaths as her eyes widened and tears fell freely down her cheeks as she looked back at Queen Novo.

"Y-Y-Your Majesty... I..." Fizzlepop bit her lip as she began to weep in front of the hippogriff monarch. All four of her legs collapsed to her knees as she found herself unable to stand at the shock of the gift she had just received. Queen Novo came up and likewise lowered herself down to Fizzlepop's level.

"If words fail you, don't use them." She softly told the emotionally overwhelmed mare, as she returned the Pearl to its resting place in the chest. Fizzlepop nodded as her tears hit the marble floor of the throne room. Queen Novo gently ran the tip of her left wing under the Captain's eyes, wiping away her tears, though more immediately followed.

"Just as we will never forget what you did for us, I hope you will never forget what happened to you on the peak of Aris, and that you are always welcome in the Kingdom of the Hippogriffs, Captain Berrytwist."

Fizzlepop forced herself to sit up, and threw her front hooves around Queen Novo and Princess Skystar, to express her gratitude in a way that words never could.

Author's Note:

Okay, I hope I'm not overwhelming anyone's Favorite alerts, but this is seriously the most I've written in a 24-hour period in at least three years.

While I'd love to wrap everything up and get the Epilogue done right now, sadly I've got to get to bed.

You really don't know how much fun this was to write this week, and while some may not have gotten quite enough paragraph time, I sincerely hope I did the extended cast from the movie some justice.

Stay tuned for the Epilogue in the coming days, and again, thank you so very much for reading and commenting.