• Published 22nd Sep 2018
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Ponies in Hogwarts - KittyrinnAiko



A pony stranded in the past must go to another dimension and learn the ways of wizards before she can return to her own time.

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Chapter 7: Witches Brooms and secrets.

Nova looked at the brooms laying in the turf of the quidditch pitch with disgust. Not only did the school brooms look like they’d be lucky to fly, but the sweeps were in such bad condition they wouldn't even make a decent snack. It was Thursday afternoon, the day now split between Transfigurations and the broom riding class. Aside from the condition of the brooms, Nova’s week had been going well. Here teachers, with one exception, were encouraging her to excel. She’d also been bolstered by Moonie’s news that if she could demonstrate that she was worthy of advancement, she’d be given the opportunity. Every moment not in class, or when she was not doing after class assignments, was spent studying, along with making list of possible topics that might be presented to her, followed up by additional targeted study. Her study notes had reached epic proportions.

Back to the subject at hand, which Nova reasoned, might also be on a test as well.

“I’d like you all to pick out a broom.” Professor Flieger instructed.

Nova walked over to a broom that looked like it might hold up a little while longer and looked about to see what the others were doing. Most of the boys had picked out decent brooms as well. Of the girls, Maggie and Ruth had also picked out decent brooms. The three girls were also the only girls in the combined class who had on the prescribed riding outfit. The boys had trousers and a shirt on under their robes with the robes opened from the waist down.

“Sir, how is it that Gryffindors and Slytherins must be in the same broom class.” One of the Slytherin girls asked.

“Because it’s been my experience that Slytherins and Gryffindors more often than not, tend towards catching on fairly quickly when it comes to riding a broom.” Professor Flieger offered as a seventh-year boy flew over on what could only be his own broom. Then he added with a wink, “Not so much with Ravenclaws or Hufflepufs. - Not that you heard that from me, mind you. - Oh, right, Thoarin, you’re here, good. - Listen up, Thoarin is the Gryffindor quidditch team captain. He’ll be helping us. - Now the first thing we are going to do is give the command up, wait for it Mr Ogden.” One of the Gryffindor boys had already jumped ahead, and his broom was now in hand. “Place your right hand over the broom.”

“I’m left-handed.” Alma Ashworth offered. A Gryffindor girl.

“Unless you plan on sitting on your broom the wrong way around, you might just want to use your right hand. Do not straddle your broom while doing...” One of the boys let out a squeak and crumpled to the ground. “Especially the boys.” Barely canceled laughter bubbled up from the first years. “Do pay attention, and for heaven’s sake don’t go doing anything before I tell you. - Now, broom to your right, put out your hand, and command up. - Go on do it.”

Nova’s broom responded in an instant, as did Maggie’s, Ruth’s, and many others. Most of the boys had their brooms in hand within the third attempt, but many of the girls who were either muggle-born or having been discouraged to set bottom upon the shaft of wood struggled yet. This was an imposed condition set on the girls by parents and grandparents who held outdated notions about it being inappropriate for girls to ride a shaft of any sort. Especially if it meant putting it between their legs. Beatrice to her credit had her broom in hand within the second command.

“Well, those of you who have yet to command your broom, keep at it. - Those of you who’ve managed that much, come with me.” Professor Flieger instructed. “Thoarin, stay with them.” He then directed those who had their brooms in hand a few paces over.

“Now, for the girls who have skirts, you’ll want to sit side saddle.” Professor Flieger began. “Take the shaft, bring it round behind you, take hold behind you, bring it down, sit, twist forward, and shift your left hand forward. - Gentlemen, drop the sweep down, and step over. Bring the shaft up, and sit. - You three girls who have riding outfits may do the same. - Once you are aboard, grip tight the shaft of the broom with both hands, and your feet will gently lift up off the ground.”

He waited a few moments. “Now.” Professor Flieger began. “Your target will be the far end of the pitch, around the three goal rings, back to the goal rings at the other end. Take a steady pace, and fly no higher then you wish to fall. - Now, one by one, will your brooms forward, and be off with you.”

Immediately several boys took off, and raced for the goal. Maggie, Ruth, Nova, and Beatrice followed quickly. Several more looked unsure as to how to ‘will’ a broom to do anything.

Nova revaled at the feel of the wind in her face, and longed to soar into the sky. But no, she had to stay with the rest least someone try to follow. She also doubted the broom could manage it, and she’d be forced to transform. Far ahead the boy in the lead made a hard landing as his broom failed. He got up, and kicked at the broom.

“We’d best not go to fast.” Ruth offered. “These brooms I fear have seen better days.”

“I suppose I could call it a school expense.” Nova said softly to herself.

“Pardon?” Maggie asked.

“A gift I think to make, but I shall have to do so anonymously, and time it so that it won’t be delivered until after such decisions are made as to whether or not I’m to be advanced to the next grade, or not.”

“Would you leave me behind?” Maggie asked. There was a quiet hurt in her voice.

“My dear Maggie, the time when we must part will come far to soon.” Nova offered. “I linger here but a short while, and then I must be on my way.”

The girls said nothing more as they contemplated Nova’s words.

✍✍✍✍✍✍✍✍✍✍✍✍✍✍✍✍✍✍✍✍✍

Come Saturday Headmaster Scrimgeour met with those teachers who’s opinions he felt mattered.

“Never have I seen a student so at home in the sky.” Professor Flieger offered. “As I’m sure you are aware the Gryffindor Quidditch team had their tryouts today. Allowed to use her own broom she danced upon the zephyrs as though she’d abandoned her task at catching the Snitch.”

“Yes, I saw.” Scrimgeour offered. “I suspect she’d caught the Snitch right from the start, and only came down when she’d drunk deeply of the joy of flight.”

“Indeed she did.” Flieger offered. “When she came down, Thoarin asked if she’d perhaps given up, indeed many of the hopefuls had given up hope of finding it. She apologized explaining that once she was in the air she’d no desire to come down so soon, pulled the Snitch out of her pocket, and gave it to him. Not one person can say when she had caught it.”

Phineas Black made an account of how Nova somehow managed to accomplish the tasks given her despite her partner Beatrice, who while improving under Nova’s tutelage was a complete dunderhead. “I will have to have one of my more patient apprentices keep an eye on Beatrice. I fear teaming her up with any of the other first years might prove disastrous.”

“You speak as though the decision has already been made.” Galatea Merrythought asked.

“And have you any reason why we should not?” Black asked. “If I had my way I’d evaluate the skill of all new students, and place them according to skill.”

“Which could potentially place a lot of muggle born at a disadvantage.” Scrimgeour reminded him.

“Better to place them at the level that is appropriate to their skill or lack there of then to hold back bright young minds. They’ll just have to catch up or fall behind.” Black stated flatly. "It's a pity we can't start them sooner."

Next came Griselda Marchbanks who made an account of how much better Nova was doing now that she no longer felt the need to hold back. She was followed by the charms teacher, and the herbology teacher who’d discovered that Nova had a vast knowledge of herbs, her only fault being she knew most by different names.

“We’ve not heard from you yet, Castor?” Headmaster Scrimgeour asked.

Professor Castor Steorra thought for a moment. “I’ve never seen a child soak up knowledge so fast, and yet, it’s as though she has never laid eye on the night sky before. That is to say our night sky.” He said at length.

“Well, she is from a different country.” Dietrich offered.

“That’s not it,” Castor replied in contemplation. “Surely her country would see the same night sky. She should know the same stars only by different names, just as with the herbs. - She doesn’t know the night sky at all. What’s more, it is on the first night of the first year Gryffindor class, at the end of the class, something occurred that I can’t quite place my finger on. I’d ushered the class downstairs only to discover she’d hung back, so I went back to get her. What I saw… at first I thought surely this girl is a Veela. True I was mesmerized, but what I felt wasn’t the sort of thing one would expect from a Veela. Her eyes were like silver, her hair billowed out even though the night air was still, stars danced about her, and she glowed as though a piece of the very moon had descended from the heavens. She was looking up at the moon with what I took to be longing, the sort of look one often sees in a child’s eyes who longs for home. I felt the power as well. There was more power in her at that moment then I’ve ever felt from another human being in my life. Some ancient power fearsome, and ominous. And then it was over, and she was back to being just an ordinary girl. She turned to me, and I saw such sadness in her eyes that I nearly wept. She must have known I’d seen everything. She looked me in the eye and said in a soft voice ‘It’s so cold, so lonely’ as though she’d expected to feel some familiar presence on the moon.” He stopped for a moment, the room remaining silent as the others contemplated what he’d said. “She turned away, said she needed to go back to her room, and that was it.”

“What do we know of Celestial foxes?” Merrythought asked. “I too felt that surge of power.”

“Not much of anything I’m afraid.” Scrimgeour offered. “Only rumor, legend, and conjecture of what kind of creature they might even be. I can’t help but wonder if what you saw was a manifestation of her blood curse. - I felt that surge as well. Most ancient it felt. - Still though, we should not fear what we do not know or understand, for if we do, we will be little better then muggles ourselves. - What I can tell you is what I know of Princess Celestia who’d been a silent partner in the founding of this institution. From the first-hand accounts of her, and the palace that Princess Nova has in Gryffindor tower, yes, a palace. Princess Celestia’s power must truly be awesome.”





On the following Saturday Nova was presented with a battery of exams, and by Monday morning she was presented with third-year books, and told not to be late for class. Nova was ecstatic, gave all her friends a hug, and called for Daisy Dartford to wait up as Nova had no idea where she needed to go.

👻

All hallows Eave

Moonie delighted at this holiday more so then Nova and was delighting in hoping out of paintings, crossing whatever room hall or stairwell she might be in to jump back into another. After all, it was to her, but a variation of her maker’s own holiday. No one could be sure when she’d do it, and people began eyeing dark horses in paintings suspiciously. Now the thing about Halloween at Hogwarts is that it was the one time of year that pranks were not only tolerated but encouraged. And only now did Nova begin to understand what Celestia had done to her guardian as Moonie engaged in some very Princess Celestia like pranks. Among other things, hot sauce seemed to be finding its way into some interesting things. Halloween was also Mrs Krasnodar’s least favorite holiday next to All Fools day owing to the fact that she was universally disliked. Nor was the tentacle coming out of her coffee cup appreciated.

Meanwhile, the students who could make the ghost balls had discovered they could pack multiple tufts together to create rideable clouds, but only by the people capable of packing the things. Nova couldn't help but speculate that these most talented in the packing of clouds might have pegasi counterparts in Equestria. Students could be seen belly surfing on tiny clouds down hallways and across rooms throughout the school. Those who’d yet to figure out the trick would fall right through landing painfully on the floor. Other areas were full of strange mists do to the use of expansion spells on the little clouds, and a few enterprising individuals had even sculpted spooky ghosts that both alarmed and amazed many. Even the ghost were fascinated by them. Meanwhile, Fergus having figured out how to make mini thunder clouds, would set them adrift, and then activate it with a wand from a distance.

A close call happened with the clouds when one of the boys found himself on a slowly diminishing cloud high ever the well of the grand staircase. Watching him attempting to swim in mid-air would have been comical if not for the immediate danger. Several professors got their wands out to levitate the lad to safety just as Moonie swept up underneath and carried him aloft. She circled around a few times landed, and walked into a painting, the boy dropping to the floor with a plop.

“Then I shall tell you the tale of that which lead to my coming here.” Nova offered to a small group, one of whom had asked her. She’d gotten her hands on a strange instrument that couldn't seem to decide if it was a guitar or a harp, and strummed it now and then.

“I’m afraid it’s all on account of cake.

The thing is...

The Queen of the day she loved her cake, and never a bite would she share it.

But the queen of night looked on in delight, and swore she’d dine upon it.

Stealthily she crept while her sister slept, and stole it out from under.

But before she could be away, her sister they say awoke from her slumber. - And the chase goes on to this very day.”



“So what you are saying is we now have night and day thanks to a theft of cake?” Someone asked bemused.

“Wait, what? What’s night and day have to do with cake?”

“She’s been pulling your leg.” Beatrice offered having joined the group. She’d a smirk on her face. “Not that you didn’t deserve it, what with asking about personal family matters that are none of our business. - The Queen of the Day is the sun, and the Queen of the Night is the moon.”

Nova gave Beatrice a hug. “I knew you were clever from the moment I set eyes on you. - By the way, how are you doing in potions?”

“Do you mean since you abandoned me?”

“I suppose so, but that too is a lesson.” Nova offered. “Rely on your friends when they are by your side, but remember that there will be times when they won’t be there to help you.”

“I confess it’s a hard lesson.” Beatrice offered. “I floundered at first, but after my potions had failed no less than three times I took to heart what you’d been trying to get through to me. - Potions are indeed a serious business. - Now, on the other hand, I’m quite good at creating teacups.”

“I imagined you might be.” Nova offered with a smile even as someone came running to where they’d gathered.

“Miss Moon, Miss Moon.” said a boy gasping for breath as he approached.

“Can we help you?” Nova asked.

“Bathroom. Hole. Down.” He gasped.

“Must be some new riddle for us.” Nova Mused. “Take a moment, and try again.”

“Harold, bathroom.” He began again.

“You are the Harold of Bathroom?” Beatrice asked thinking it some prank.

“No, Harold Ollivander was in the bathroom, and he went down the hole.”

“I know he’s thin, but you can’t be suggesting he got flushed can you?” Beatrice asked.

“Not flushed.” the boy offered. He’d run a considerable distance and was still trying to get his breath.

“Oisin, try explaining with a little more detail.” Nova prompted as she let go of her grip on Beatrice.

“We um, a group of us boys that is, snuck into the girls' bathroom...”

“You what?” Several of the girls chimed.

“Second floor. - To get a look at the big hole in the wall. He slipped, and slid right down the pipe.” Oisin explained.

“Oh, and you want me to transform, and fly down after him don’t you.” Nova replied, her voice well flavored with rising anger. The girls had for the most part stayed well clear of that hole, and the boys… it was a girl’s privy for harmony's sake!

“I wouldn't ask, but you know what the teachers said. We thought...”

“You thought you’d come to me when you should be going to the teachers.” Nova all but spat out. “I swear, that boy will be the end of me yet. And I’ve a good idea why none of our professors want to go near it. There is a foul rank smell coming out of there.”

“Then you’ll not help?”

“I didn’t say that. Duty calls, and away I must go once more into the breach.” Nova said her voice commanding as though it rang with distant thunder. She handed the instrument she’d found to Beatrice, transformed to her fox form, and shot away with blinding speed.

“Pray tell, where has my charge gone to in such great haste?” Moonie asked poking her head out of a painting.

“To the toilet.” Beatrice offered.

“We shall have to counsel her not to wait so long then.” Moonie mused, and then trotted off in the direction Nova had gone.

:trixieshiftright:

The flight of the celestial fox through the school gathered the attention of more then a few to the point she might as well have been a flare racing through the halls.

“Away from there you fools!” Nova shouted on entering the second flour girl’s toilet. A moment later she dove into the hole.

The stench. Surely something horrible waited in that pit. Nor was it toilet stench either.

Nova transformed back into her true form, the passage plenty large enough for a small pony, and used the spell of recall to teleport her messenger uniform, the blue gray Shadow bolt duty uniform, and black armor took but a moment to put on while slowly descending. What the girls had assumed to be shields were in fact wing guards.

Nova made fast her hoof daggers of adamantine, true silver the metal was often called, cast a camouflage spell, and silently drifted down the passage. She stayed close the ceiling while stealing her nerves less she falter.

“Snakes, why does it have to be snakes?” Harold’s voice could be heard from somewhere ahead. A few moments later he let out an odd sort of eep followed by the sound of something hitting the floor.

Nova glided into a large chamber, a crypt of some sort. That or a shrine to snakes. There was a stone path down the center which was guarded on either side by great busts of snakes that came up out of dark reflecting pools making it impossible to know how deep the stone snakes went. Up ahead…

Nova’s fur stood on end, her fear having taken form there in front of her the great worm raised up, but it did not as yet perceive the silent hunter gliding into the chamber. Beyond that the face of Slitherin. The creatures mind was presently on the now lifeless boy. Nova did not know what this serpent was, but thought sure that it could only be the fabled Jabberwock. Her father’s words came back to her, beware the Jabberwock my foal! The jaws that bite, the claws… hang on, this thing had no claws, though it definitely had jaws that bite, and pail eyes of cannery yellow. She never did much care for the color. Perhaps it was a Frumious Bandersnatch? Yes, that must be it. That or Wyrm. Wyrm seamed most likely.

The Wyrm in offish thought cast its eyes away from its pray. It could smell the fear, and feel the air displaced. It knew not where, and scalled the chamber with eyes of flame.

Down she struck, one two, through and through, her blades of adamantine cut. And then with a crack, the boy she’d snatch, and away once more with a mighty thunderclap before the head could hit the floor.

High above they listened with fright, as the Beast thrashed its last, it’s head now on the floor.





Crack!

The air shattered as the armored pegacorn appeared in the great hall, the camouflage spell having been abandoned. She took no heed of those around, struck as they were by an odd mix of fear and an irrational desire to hug it, and laid her charge on the floor, his eyes to open never more. Her head did rise and summoned to herself one of Fergus’s black clouds. She held it above Harold, and with a thwack the cloud gave a crack, and dear sweet Harold, did jump to life once more.

Harold looked up at the pony, knew that mane, he coughed, and said. “Hi Nova.”

“Idiot,” Nova replied, and vanished with a crack.

🎃

“Nova!” Moonie called, her words echoing in the now still crypt. On realizing what was going on she’d raced down after, but Nova had teleported away, the castle’s wards never having been designed to negate unicorn magic. Nova popped back in with a loud crack. “What in the name of harmony?!”

“Harold Ollivander fell in, and found his way here.” Nova offered while producing a swarm of steel balls from a small saddle bag. Each about the size of a marble. “He was mostly dead, and I made quick to return the favor to this serpent.”

“Dead?”

“He got better.”

“He got better?”

“His heart had stopped. I jump started him with one of Fergus’s clouds.” Nova then began to assault the mask of Salazar Slytherin with her heavy steel shot using her levitation spell to fire the shot repeatedly at the mask. The speed of the shot anywhere between eight hundred to a thousand horns distance per second. High above it sounded like the attack of a thousand wood peckers. Or was it jack hammers? The sound of the shot racing through the air faster and faster emanated forth, the sound twisted so that it sounded like the rumbling of a dragon.

“Why art though doing this?” Moonie asked at length, and then the mask of Salazar cracked, and fell with a mighty crash. Nova was forced to use her shield to protect herself as a great wall of dust and debris issued forth, and up the pipe forcing the people who’d gathered in the bathroom to flee, and bar the doors.

When the dust had cleared a clutch of pail green eggs had been reveled in a hollow behind the mask, among them one egg that clearly did not belong in that clutch.

“A pegasus egg!” Moonie exclaimed.

“I sensed the eggs...” Her eyes on the pegasus egg. “I never would have guest there’d be a pegasus egg.” Nova offered. She used her magic to gently lift the pegasus egg to herself, and then destroyed the eggs of the serpent. “A task I give you now, my dear sweet knight, search these passages so that we might know if there is a mate. Find the openings, and collapse them, if you dare, so that no other beast may enter and place at threaten those we would call friends. - I’ll take this egg to our Tia, and then I must reappear in human form so that none will be so foolish as to venture down here.” And with that she vanished to reappear in her own hall.

“Tia!” Nova called. “I have much need of you! - Tia!”

The avatar of Princess Celestia appeared before her, her countenance more of light then of flesh. “A need?”

“I have just now rescued this egg from a great worm who’d kept it, perhaps as a snack for later. It’s still warm, but I must be quickly away before I am searched for.”

“This little one will need love.” Tia offered.

“This little one will need to be kept warm while I must be away, and I see no more perfect incubator then thyself.” Nova offered. “And I’ve no doubt our sweet Princess Celestia has endowed you with a fair share of her love.”

“You would make an incubator of me?” Tia said with a smile. “This will likely be a wild pegasi.”

“Even so, I could not leave this little one behind. It would be against the Shadowbolt code.”

👥

Outside the girls bathroom a gathering of teachers waited with wands ready, the students urged away. The door opened, and light shown forth. Nova walked out in human form, while behind her was the golden alicorn. The Alicorn waited but a moment, and was gone. The gap in the wall now sealed with the crest of Celestia.

Nova stepped out of the room, and the teachers lowered their wands. Those students who’d not as yet left the hall looked on in wonderment. “I have need to speak with the Headmaster.” Nova said. “Concerning this matter.”

“What has happened?” Professor Marchbanks asked, she being the first to regain her wits.”

“An ancient trap that gap, beneath which was a chamber of secrets. But I will not speak of it now. Let the depths of the mountains keep their dark secrets. That which is down there shall never find it’s way here by that passage.”

“Princess Nova.” Headmaster Scrimgeour called as he made his way down the hall. “Come, and we will discus this.”

“Professor Marchbanks, will you come as well, I’ve a mater I need speak with you both as well.” Nova offered, and a moment later the three took their leave.

📝

“I was in the hall when you appeared, and returned life to Harold Ollivander.” Brutus Scrimgeour Headmaster of Hogwarts said once the three had retired to his office.

“I did no such thing.” Nova replied.

“Do you deny that was yourself?” Scrimgeour asked.

“I do not.” Nova offered. “I did not return his life. I but used the energy in the small cloud to restart his heart.”

“What is this I hear?” Griselda Marchbanks asked. “And what was that golden pegasus of light?”

“The mare of light was none other then the avatar of my Aunt Celestia.” Nova offered. “There was a great worm in a secreted chamber deep in the mountain. A shrine of sorts dedicated to Salazar Slytherin.” She paused but a moment to collect her thoughts. “Crypt it was. Quit possibly Salazar Slytherin’s judging from the mask.” “There was a number of underground passages leading out from there as well.”

“From what Harold told me, that worm was a Basilisk. It’s very look is death if it but looks into the eyes.” Scrimgeour offered. “I then made my way to the second floor toilets as quickly as I could. And from what I know of Salazar Sltyherin he left after a heated disagreement with the founders never to return. - Strange, and troubling this.”

“The death that Harold experienced is not a true death.” Nova offered. “Such was the power of that gaze that it caused Harold’s heart to stop. And such is Fergus Potter that he’d unwittingly given me the means to start that heart again. - Granted there is a finite time to do so.”

“I see. - And you apparated, you and him to the main hall in the guess of a pegasus.” Scrimgeour stated.

“Teleported, it’s a different sort of magic, and the wards bar not unicorn magic.” Nova offered. She then told them all that had transpired.

“But how is it you can use unicorn magic?” Professor Marchbanks asked astonished when Nova had finished.

“She has a second Animageus form. That of a winged unicorn.” Scrimgeour offered. “That which we commonly name a pegacorn.”

“Two Animageus forms?” Marchbanks asked astonished.

“And undoubtedly the reason for her presumed blood curse I think. It’s left the permanent mark on her.” Scrimgeour reasoned. Nova’s second form was actually that of a human girl, but she did not as yet wish to correct this error in his thinking. “But you said you retrieved a pegasus egg. What do you intend to do with it now?”

“I intend to hatch the little one, and raise them as my own. And before you object, my people are well versed in how to raise a pegasus, and I am better equipped then any ordinary mortal man. All I’ll need is milk for the foal once they’ve hatched.”

“You speak as though you are immortal.” Professor Marchbanks pointed out.

“Well I’m fairly sure death will find me quick enough if sword or spear should give me grievous injury.” Nova offered. “As to how long I expect to live, only time will tell.” Then she added with a lighthearted smile. “And I shall count ever day past today as a gift. Had that Basilisk, as you called it, had realized I was hunting it from above the chamber instead of cowering in fear somewhere, I might not be here now, but in the belly of the beast. - Thought it seemed more to me to be a Wyrm. It was a bit too dragonish, and lacked the limbs that a basilisk would normally have.”

“Never a truer word has ever been spoken I suspect regarding your good fortune.” Her words troubled him. “Can’t very well go down there to look at it short of going in through the sewers. Pity.” Scrimgeour offered. “I’ll let our master of beasts, Mr Mackintosh, know to be at your disposal. - There is also the issue of the fact that it had eggs in the first place. A Basilisk is something created by a wizard and it’s not supposed to be able to reproduce. Plus there is the possibility of another out there somewhere. - Were you not afraid?”

“Afraid?” Nova asked boldly. “I was near ready piss myself.” She punctuated her statement with a smile, and a laugh that spoke of great relief at coming through her adventure un-eaten. “My Moonie is looking to see if there might be another, just as well no one can get down there. - Also, I’d like to keep the presence of the pegasus egg quiet. And it’ll be necessary for me to spend as much time with the egg as possible. That means sleeping with the little one while in my pegasus form as it’s beneficial to the foal inside. Also with your permission, and Mr Mackintosh's permission, I’d like to open a door as close to the barns as possible.”

“You don’t mean to keep it in your bed in the tower do you?” Professor Marchbanks asked.

“On the Contrary, I’ll be sleeping in my own bed, as the tower is a might bit too cool for a foal. I’ve also talked Tia into being an incubator when I’m not there.”

“Tia?” Scrimgeour asked.

“Princess Celestia’s avatar.” Nova explained. “I believe you got a glimpse. She’s the one who placed the seal on the entrance to the chamber, and I should probably talk to her about providing you with a way in.” she had to think a moment. “I doubt you’d want her setting an egg in my room in the tower. I imagine her presence might unhinge my roommates. I didn’t introduce her to yourselves at Tea when you came to visit as I figured everything would be overwhelming enough.”

“I got a good look, and she’s right, that whatever that was would be rather unsettling for the students.” Professor Marchbanks admitted. “This whole affair will be rather unsettling, and I think it best we do some readjusting regarding what people have seen. Rumors will run rampant if we don’t. I can tell Caydence you are working on a special project. - How do we contact you though?”

“The two of you can just knock and Miss Aiko will let you in.” Nova offered. “The girls in my dorm room have access as well. And the owls seem to have no difficulty finding their way in. The girls understand to stay out of my chambers, except I’ve allowed Maggie in. I’ll have to bring her into my confidence. Suddenly telling her she can’t come in would be difficult. I let Ruth and Florence use one of the baths, and they have willingly kept the scope of my apartment a secret so they wouldn't have to share the bath I let them use.” Nova gave a wink.

“Oh so that’s it.” Professor Marchbanks said with a smile. “Caydence has yet to see any of the four of you use the girl’s baths, and couldn't for the life of her figure out how you were keeping yourself clean.”

“The dorm baths are hardly large enough for the amount of girls that are expected to use them.” Nova offered.

“I shall have to see about expanding it, or providing more.” Scrimgeour offered. “Especially being that we’ve been saved the cost of new brooms thanks to an anonymous and generous donation. I’ll give you what you want. And we will do our best to keep secret all that needs being kept secret. - I think what we will tell everyone is that Harold fell down an old sewage pipe, you went after him, and there’d been a collapse.”

“My greatest fear is that some curious person might do some mischief out of ignorance.” Nova offered. “A pegasus foal is a most delicate treasure. Even more so while still in the egg.”

“Now, I wish to talk to Professor Marchbanks, and you may return to your precious bundle.” Scrimgeour requested.

“I think that I’d like to check on Harold, it’ll be time for dinner when I’m done, and then I’ll turn in early.” Nova offered as she got up. “Thank you.”

Headmaster Scrimgeour waited till she left.

“Are you sure letting her keep that egg is a good idea.” Professor Marchbanks asked.

“How could I not when she thinks of the egg like a child? And for all we know she may be more of pegasus then human.” His mind went back to the paintings in Nova’s apartments. The paintings featured mostly ponies of the field, unicorns, pegasi of the sky, and pegacorns arrayed in royal remnant. Not a single painting of a human could he remember seeing. The Avatar of Celestia looked very much like one of the royal pegacorns. Yes, he’d gotten a glimpse if not a good look. “I can’t help but wonder why she hasn’t let Caydence know the full extent of her apartments.”

“Dear Caydence is a bit of a meddler, and I doubt she’d keep any of this secret for long.” Professor Marchbanks offered. “Oh her motives would be good enough, but in her desire to be helpful, the wrong people are bound to find out.”

🛏

Nova arrived at the schools infirmary to find Thoarin, Fergus, Daisy, and Newt were presently visiting with Harold. The four members of the quidditch team had a worried look on their faces. “How is he doing?” Nova asked.

“Nova.” Thoarin said looking at her. “There’s been some queer rumors since he fell in the hole. What's more is he’s got some idea that you’re a horse. - I think he bumped his head on the way down.”

“Now Harold, you mustn't be telling people I’m a horse.” Nova chastised softly.

“There was a pegasus, I saw it. A lot of people saw it.” Fergus offered. “It even had armor on.”

Nova thought for a moment. “Harold and I were pulled out of the old sewage drain following its collapse. Harold was taken strait to the infirmary, and I went to talk with the Headmaster. Harold bumped his head, and you saw a prank that was ill timed. - That’s all there was to it.”

The others looked at her, blinked, but said nothing to the contrary. Nova wasn’t happy about what she’d just done, but it’d make things easier.

“Harold, you’re lucky you even survived the fall.” Daisy said.

“So what was it like to have a sewage tunnel collapse while you were in it?” Fergus asked.

“Really scary, and not something I ever want to experience again.” Nova offered. Behind her the sound of one of the professors could be heard approaching. Nova turned to see Professor Merrythought the DADA teacher. How much had she seen?

“Miss Nova, I’d like a word with you if I may? - The rest of you, with the exception of Mr Ollivander who will be staying over night for observation, need to be off to dinner. I’m to understand he got hit in the head by a very large chunk of the ceiling.” Professor Merrythought said to them.

“Professor?” Nova asked.

“Come, I’ve something I wish to discus, a little extra credit if you’re up to it.” Professor Merrythought said, while indicating that Nova should follow.

“Well now I see why I can’t read you.” Merrythought offered as they went down a hallway. Nova said nothing till after they’d gone into a small library off an office that was used by Professor Merrythought.

“Messing with the minds of my friends is not something I do lightly.” Nova offered. “It is a distasteful betrayal of trust, and to do it to my own friends. Nor would you want to read my mind.”

“Wouldn't I?”

“I got caught up in a war.” Nova shuddered at the memory. “Some of my memories are not the sort of thing any sane person would want to see.” Nova took in a deep breath, and let it out slowly. “Nor do I wish to forget wholly those comrades in arms who I loved so well.” Nova let out a sigh. “Leave me to deal with my memories, and tell me what it was you wanted?”

Professor Merrythought said nothing, went to a table where a large book lay, and opened to a bookmark. “Is this what you saw in the crypt?”

Nova looked at the three dimensional image that moved about on the page. It’s glare gave her a shiver. “Sure is a good thing a picture of one doesn’t become one. - What I saw was more dragonish.” Nova then thumbed through the pages till she found the page for the Wyrm which was a sort of legless dragon while still being considered a serpent. The king of snakes it might be called, though generally considered a dragon. She studied that one for a bit, but no, that wasn’t quite right either, and Wyrms didn’t have the same eyes as a Basilisk when it looked into your eyes.

Nova got an idea, pulled out her wand, and then pulled out the images from the book to compare them side by side. Professor Marythought watched in amazement. “Don’t worry, it’s just an illusion. There’s a few things I’m especially good at and illusions are one. - Now, what I saw was very much like a Wyrm having no limbs, more so then the large snake-like creature listed as a Basilisk, but at the same time more snake like then a typical Wyrm.” She then combined the two images, and made a few adjustments. “There, that’s what I saw.” She announced satisfied with her work. “I sent my Moonie to see if there might be a mate being there was a clutch of eggs. - Any chance you have an image cell I can place this in so I can save the image?”

“Yes, yes, of course.” Merrythought offered, and pulled out a large book with mostly blank pages. She opened the book to a blank cell, and Nova lowered what she’d created into it, the image forming.

“So that’s it then. And you killed it?”

“I got the drop on it. I was lucky. I’m also battle hardened.” Nova offered. “Being here has helped… save for this instance.”

“Dare say I’d have fared as well.”

“Can you fly, camouflage yourself, and teleport?”

“Yes, but to dive down, and kill, I’m assuming you didn’t try to use your wand.”

“I’ve two daggers of adamantine locked away in my apartments that I summoned to myself.”

“Adamantine? - Next you’ll be telling me you’ve got Andúril and Elvish armor.”

“Ah, no… I do have armor that’s made from laminated woven spider silk though. Very durable, resistant to magical attack, and light weight. - As a message runner my armor had to be light weight. Won’t save me from being swallowed hole though.”

“Was it that big?”

“Sure seemed like it. - I’d no desire to stick around to take measurements.”

“Can’t blame you. And to think something like that was right under this very castle. Likely an opening out in the forest. No idea if there was another?”

“Well unless that thing was plumbed the same way a phoenix is, I’m of the assumption it had a mate.” Nova offered. "The area it was living in was very damp too. With pools of water in the crypt. No proper Basilisk would live in such a place."

“Sure hope there aren’t any more entrances here in the castle.” Merrythought said with a shudder. “Why don’t you run along to dinner now. I’m going to save this, and add a few notes.”

“Alright, thank you.”

“It’s we who should be thanking you.”

🍽

Nova arrived at the dining hall a short time later to find she was the last of the students to have arrived. She found her seat, and sat down to wait for the special Halloween feast. Everyone around her was talking about Harold falling down a shaft, Nova diving in, how it collapsed, and the staff rescuing them both. It wasn’t what had actually happened, but Nova was fine with it. Non of the students needed to know about the things that lurked deep under the mountain. After dinner, she informed her roommates that she’d be retiring to her apartment for the night. They seemed to understand, believing she’d nearly been buried alive, and let her go without any fuss.

“Nova found the celestial avatar in her bed keeping their precious bundle warm. The egg had brightened considerably, it’s muted colors now looking more like a proper Equestrian Pegasus egg. Nova transformed back into a pony, the two switched places, Nova curled about the egg with a wing over it, and used her magic to pull the covers over herself. Contented she fell fast asleep.

It was Saturday night, and she slept till noon the next day.

Author's Note:

Portions of this are inspired by Jabberwocky By Lewis Carroll

Scalled: That had actually been a typo. I thought about fixing it, being the word should have been scanned or scoured. I decided to look it up just to make sure it's not utter gibberish as a great deal of Jabberwocky is. Turns out it's an archaic term for scabby. It's also a game reference from "Outlast" and is a type of monster that has the reference: ―The Scalled, hysterical at not being saved by their "messiah".
I decided to keep it. The idea that a creature capable of killing with its eyes alone scanning an area so harshly that the very stones might be scabbed over by the effort while its doom is nearly upon it just seemed to fit.

Does the killing of the basilisk/wyrm, and sealing of the Chamber of Secrets effect the future? It will in small ways, but given the nature of Tom Riddle, much will still play out the same way.

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