• Published 15th Jan 2021
  • 2,344 Views, 246 Comments

Stallion of Tomorrow - Jade Dawn



Faster than a speeding pegasus...more powerful than a locomotive...the last colt of a lost world...

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Protector

A “My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic” Fanfiction

Written by Jade Dawn


Amethyst Star was not lost. Just a little bit misdirected, that was all.

At least that's what she told herself as she fumbled with the map of Manehattan she held, turning it over and around in a vain attempt to find where she was.

But she'd work it out. Eventually. It was just a matter of time, she kept saying in her mind.

The sooner the better, though. Night had long since fallen over the city, and the lights of its many towers and skyscrapers shone bright against the darkened skies. The downtown streets, bustling in daytime, were now emptied of their usual traffic save for the odd pedestrian such as herself, the roads and sidewalks now bathed in the yellow glow of electric streetlights, casting a pallid light on her pink coat and lavender mane.

It made Amethyst uneasy, and not just because she wasn't where she was supposed to be. The whole environment just felt unsettling to her. It wasn't at all like the cozy evenings back home in Ponyville.

She felt...exposed. Too out in the open. Like somepony or something was waiting just out of the glare of the streetlights. The fact that she was essentially a stranger in a strange land only added to her stress.

And it was only after she ruminated on this feeling that she finally conceded with herself that she was, in fact, lost. With the acceptance of that fact, Amethyst rolled up the map and shoved it in her saddlebags with a disgruntled sigh before beginning to dejectedly make her way down the sidewalk to.

This whole trip had been a bust for her. The only reason she'd come to Manehattan was to buy one of those stupid LexPads that ponies just wouldn't shut up about lately. But just her luck, they'd been almost completely sold out, and with no other real reason to be there she'd opted to just wander around taking in the sights for the day. But all that had done was get her to where she was now.

Completely and utterly lost.

Amethyst looked all around her as she walked, trying in vain to get a sense of direction in the labyrinth of buildings, streets, and alleyways that surrounded her. But all that did was get her more on edge, seeing all those tall vertical walls and darkened paths beyond. It made her wish that she hadn't gotten herself lost, that the map would have been at least half-way legible, that she hadn't come to Manehattan in the first place, that maybe somepony would take pity on her and maybe she could ask them for–

"Hey, miss?"

Amethyst's ears perked up at the sound of a male voice. She turned to see a young unicorn stallion approaching from past one of the streetlights to her right. He had a pale blue coat and a short darker indigo mane, and he wore a gray beanie and a dark-colored jacket.

"Sorry, I just couldn't help noticing..." he said. "You look a bit lost. Are you okay?"

Amethyst sighed in relief. Maybe her night was starting to look up after all.

"Oh, thank goodness. As a matter of fact, I am. I was just trying to find my way around, and...well, I sort of got a little misguided."

The other pony nodded. "Where were you staying?"

"The Marelton. On 5th Avenue."

"Alright then," the stallion said with a smile. "I think I can help you out. I know a couple of shortcuts that go by that way. Just follow me and I'll bring you right to it."

With that he turned and began walking down an adjacent alleyway, Amethyst trotting along behind him.

She couldn't keep the pep out of her step as she went along, elated at the fact that finally she was getting somewhere. The first thing she was going to do when she got back to her room was just flop down on the bed and let her tired body just sink into its softness, and just sleep her frustrations away through until morning. She had half a mind to sleep in and settle for a quick little brunch before catching the train back to Ponyville. Of course she'd have to check the train schedule again to see which ones were running and when. She honestly wanted to get back home as fast as possible, but the thought of sinking her tired body into a nice comfy bed was just so alluring...

Amethyst was so busy thinking that it was a few minutes or so before she realized that the stallion was leading her further down into the maze of alleyways. And when she did realize that she slowly felt that unsettled feeling creeping back into her chest. Was he leading her the right way? Or maybe...

"Hey," she said, keeping her voice low by some instinctual feeling she couldn't explain. "Are you sure that this is the–"

The stallion's horn lit up in a purple magical aura, and Amethyst felt herself suddenly gripped by the neck as she was yanked forward and slammed against a brick wall, knocking the wind out of her as she collided with it back-first. She saw the stallion wheeling to face her, there was a brief glint of metal, and before she knew what was happening he was looming close over her, a small knife pointed right at her neck.

"Not a sound," he whispered harshly. "Not a word, not a scream, not a move, understand? This'll be quick. You just keep quiet and you can get on out of here."

Amethyst stared silently at him, her chest heaving as a surge of terror took hold of her. At the moment she couldn't have spoken if she wanted to, she was so shocked.

From further down the alleyway she saw another stallion, an earth pony with an orange coat and dark brown mane and a large ball bat slung over his back, running up to meet them. Before Amethyst could begin to hope that maybe this was her salvation, the newcomer had come up behind the first stallion and looked at Amethyst with a sinister smile.

"Nice goin', Night Raid." He held out his hoof. "C'mon, fork it over so I can see what we've got."

Night Raid took a step back from Amethyst as his horn flared. She felt her saddlebags suddenly be lifted from her midsection by his aura. She feebly held out a foreleg as they were floated away from her over to the other pony, but that just earned her a slap on the hoof with the flat of Night's knife.

"Don't even try."

Amethyst sank down to her haunches against the wall and pulled her forelegs in close, hanging her head in defeat. Terror clutched her chest and she felt tears beginning to form in her eyes as everything sank in.

She was getting mugged. Sweet Celestia, she was getting mugged.

The other stallion sat down as he opened one of the saddlebags and began rummaging through it, while Night Raid continued to stand watch over their victim. Amethyst saw him take out the crumpled-up map she'd stuffed inside it earlier and toss it aside derisively.

"Friggin' tourist..."

"C'mon, make it quick, Clean Snatch," Night said, never once taking his eyes off Amethyst. "I wanna get this done and get out of here before somepony notices us."

"Oh, please," Snatch said without looking up. "Who's gonna notice us way back here?"

"I dunno, a cop, a random bystander..." And then in what was almost a mutter: "...Supermane..."

Clean Snatch stopped and looked up at Night. "Wait. Supermane? For real? C'mon, don't tell me you actually believe all that crud."

"Well I mean, stranger things have happened–"

"Dude, really think about it. Super tough earth pony? Okay, I can kinda buy that. Weird sixth sense? Pushing it, but maybe. But the other stuff? The speed, the hovering, the laser eyes...take it from experience as one, earth ponies can't do that. Besides, what kind of idiot goes around wearing a big red 'S' on their–hey, watch her!"

Night turned back to see that Amethyst had begun to try and slip away, and he grabbed her with one hoof and pushed her back to the ground. "What did I tell you about moving??" he snarled as he pointed the knife right at her head.

Amethyst whimpered and covered her face with her hooves. "I'm sorry, I'm sorry..."

Night rolled his eyes and huffed. "I'm just saying Snatch, I don't want to take any chances. He could be real. I mean, the Daily Planet seems to think so."

"No, that Lucky Lead reporter of theirs thinks he's real, and literally anypony with a working brain will tell you that she's full of...score!"

Clean Snatch had picked up the saddlebags and shook them, disgorging a decent amount of bits onto the dirty alley floor. Amethyst moaned as she watched them clink to the ground.

Night Raid turned to look as well, but kept his knife trained on Amethyst. "Huh. Not a bad haul."

"Not at all," Snatch said with a grin as he looked it over. "See? No problem. Just take it and scram and nopony's the wiser. Not a cop, not a random bystander...and definitely not Supermane."

"Really, now?" A stallion's voice, deep and firm, said. It was neither Clean Snatch or Night Raid who had spoken. Almost as one, the two muggers and their prey turned their heads in the direction of the voice.

A tall stallion now stood a few yards down the alleyway, and it seemed to Amethyst that he was rather tall, or at least taller than an average pony. His exact coat color was hard to make out in the dim light, but it looked to be a kind of tannish brown. He was shrouded in a dark red cloak that draped behind him like a cape, and a hood pulled over his head that cast a shadow on his face. Beneath the cloak he wore a simple navy blue shirt, and on this was a vivid red diamond, containing a curling shape that Amethyst couldn't quite make out from this distance and light level.

"Aw, crud..." Night Raid whispered. The knife visibly wobbled in his aura as he took slow, shaky steps away from Amethyst. "I knew it...I friggin' knew it..."

His terror wasn't shared by Clean Snatch, though, who brazenly stepped forward in front of Night and Amethyst and glared at the newcomer. "Hey, back off, pal. You wouldn't want anypony getting hurt, would you?"

"No, I wouldn't," The stallion answered in the same low, firm voice as before. "Which is why I'm going to give you a chance to leave her alone and go. I'd honestly rather it not escalate."

Snatch just scoffed. "Who do you think you are, anyway? Supermane or something?"

"That's what they like to call me, isn't it?"

For just a moment the look of bravado on Snatch's face slipped. In another it had resumed itself. "Look, buddy. I don't know what kind of stunt you're trying to pull..."

"C'mon, Snatch, let's just go," Night whispered. "I don't like thi–"

"Shut it," Snatch hissed at him before turning back to the cloaked stallion. "I dunno what you're trying to do, but we're not scared of you. Now beat it or else we'll make you beat it."

The stallion said nothing. Clean Snatch kept up his glare. Night Raid gulped nervously. Amethyst sat where she was and glanced back and forth between her captors and the cloaked figure.

Then the stranger began walking towards them, taking slow, almost leisurely steps, like he wasn't in a big hurry. And then from out of the shadow over his face cast by his hood, the pupils of his once-hidden eyes began to glow a dim, but terrifyingly noticeable, red. Amethyst felt another burst of fear clutch at her chest, and she heard Night Raid faintly whimper.

"Last warning..."

"Keep back," Clean Snatch snarled as the stallion approached. "Hey...hey did you hear me, I said keep back!"

The stranger ignored him, continuing his silent approach.

"I-I'm warning you, pal! I'll hurt you, I swear! I-I'll friggin' do it, I..."

The stallion was only a few steps away from him now.

"Alright, that's it!" In one swift motion he reached up for the bat on his shoulder, gripped it firmly in both hooves, and swung it forward straight into the face of the oncoming stranger.

It smashed into a hundred wooden splinters on impact, which fell to the ground like autumn leaves. The stallion didn't even flinch. He just blinked those glowing red eyes of his.

Clean Snatch stared in utter bewilderment, not even noticing as he numbly let the remains of the bat's handle slip out of his hoof to join the rest of it on the ground below.

The stallion just let out a small breath, like an annoyed sigh, and then said, "Fine."

And then suddenly his hooves lifted up of the ground, and the stallion began to float up into the air, rising to about three feet off the ground so that he was looking down upon Clean Snatch and his now horrified visage. There was no fluttering of wings, no glow of a magical aura or anything that might suggest conventional Equestrian magic at all. He just floated there, the ends of his cloak seeming to gently flow in a breeze unseen and unheard.

"We'll do it that way, then."

The stallion raised a foreleg, and Clean Snatch had just enough time to start a yell before the stallion backhoofed him with a terrific blow, sending him flying into the brick wall a mere two yards away from where Amethyst sat. The mugger slid to the ground in an unconscious heap and lay still.

Then the stallion turned his glowing gaze on Night Raid.

"Oh crud...oh crud!" The terrified unicorn turned and bolted, fleeing down the alleyway at a frantic speed. As Amethyst watched him run there was a sudden red blur that kicked up a gust of wind, blowing her mane and fur. An instant later the strange stallion was hovering directly in front of Night Raid, who ground his hooves into the alley road and skidded to a halt.

"Keep away from me!" Night hollered, wildly waving his knife around. "Do you hear me?! You stay away from me!"

The glow in the stallion's eyes steadily grew to a much brighter red, casting an eerie light on Night Raid's face. The air around his eyes began to ripple, and there was a faint hissing sound.

Then Night Raid looked down and saw that the knife was glowing a bright red, which soon turned to orange, then yellow. Smoke rose from it, and the metal blade began to bend and drip down onto the ground as it turned molten.

Night Raid let out a terrified squeal, letting the remains of his knife drop out of his aura as he leapt backwards. Quickly, the stallion drifted forwards and grabbed him by the chest with both hooves, lifting him off the ground and into the air.

Night Raid was in a full panic now, kicking and squirming in the stallion's iron grip. "Wait! No! Don't hurt me! Lemme go! I didn't even wanna mug anybody, it was all Clean Snatch's idea, it–"

The stranger silently raised a foreleg.

At that Night's panic went into overdrive, and he began frantically kicking his hind legs in empty air while he begged. "NO! I DON'T WANNA DIE! DON'T KILL ME-E-E-E-E-E!!!"

"I wasn't planning on it," the stallion answered calmly. "Not my style." And with that he, with what seemed to be the faintest of efforts, gave Night Raid a light hit to the side of the head. His frantic pleas fell silent, and his body went limp. The stallion lowered himself back to the ground as the red light in his eyes dimmed and faded away, darkening his face once more while he let the unconscious mugger slip out of his hooves on to the ground.

Back at her spot along the brick wall, Amethyst Star breathed heavily, her heart racing in her chest. She'd watched it all, silenced by shock, awe, and fear at the stranger who may or may not have just rescued her. But now that he was done with the muggers, she feared what he might do when he turned his attention on her.

Soon enough he turned his shadowed gaze up to her, stepping around Night Raid's unconscious form to approach her. Amethyst just stared at him, to afraid to run or call out or do anything.

But then the stranger slowed. His movements now seemed to be more careful, like he was trying to not portray himself as a threat. And when he finally spoke to her his voice was much gentler than before.

"Did they hurt you, ma'am?" he asked.

For a moment Amethyst didn't know what to say. She didn't feel ready to let her guard down and relax, not after what she'd just seen him do. But he wasn't doing anything specifically threatening to her right now, so...

"...n-no," she finally answered. "N-not really."

The stallion didn't reply immediately. She saw his shadowed head tilt a bit beneath the hood, and a strange feeling of unease came over her.

It was like he was looking right through her. Right through her very soul.

"You're right," he said suddenly. "Nothing broken. Nothing really major. Good. Now then..." The stallion stepped past her to where her saddlebags and the spilled bits lay on the ground. He bent down and began scooping the money and other discarded belongings back inside, and then picked up the bags between his teeth by the strap and turned back to her.

"...I believe these were yours?"

Amethyst just stared at the stallion, in utter disbelief that this strange pony, who just before had seemed like a holy terror, was being so gentle and downright courteous to her now. Only slowly did she finally accept that this stranger was not going to hurt her; she had nothing to fear from him. He had in fact saved her from theft. Possibly even saved her life.

And then she saw the symbol emblazoned on his shirt. She hadn't seen it clearly before, but now she could see that it was a kind of diamond shape, with a wide flat top and a bottom that tapered down to a triangular point. The outline was a deep, vivid red that stuck out against the dark navy blue, and within the diamond, set against a black background, was an odd looking shape. It was the same red as the rest of the diamond, beginning as a slanted line in its upper right corner before abruptly curling downwards at the upper left, continuing on a downward course until it hit around the middle right of the outline, before curling back up again just before the tapered end, and then finally terminating in a wide, flattened end.

It looked kind of like a very stylized "S".

"Ma'am?" The stallion prompted.

Amethyst was suddenly pulled out of her observations when she heard his voice. "Y-yes," she whispered, lighting her horn floating the saddlebags over to her.

"T-thank you," she stuttered as she put them on her back. "Thank you s-so much..."

Amethyst couldn't see it quite clearly through the shadows, but she thought she saw the faintest hints of a warm smile on the stallion's face. "Just not a fan of sitting by and watching these things happen. Now then..." he trailed off and went silent again as he turned his head to look past her at the brick wall. Amethyst couldn't help but feel a bit confused. What was he looking at?

Then he returned his gaze to her. "There's a police officer a few blocks down, directly behind you. Go to him and tell him what happened. Tell him that there's a pair of would-be muggers that you might want to press charges on."

Amethyst suddenly remembered the unconscious ponies who'd tried to rob her. "But...but are they..."

"Don't worry, they're alright. They'll have nasty headaches when they wake up, but they'll be fine. Believe me, if I really wanted to hurt them, let alone kill them, I would have. But I'm not that kind of pony. And frankly, I don't think someone like me can afford to be. Now..." He stepped away from her and turned to leave. "I think I should be going now."

Amethyst suddenly had a thought. "Wait a minute...how do you know there's a police officer down that way?"

"I looked." He said it so simply that the full weight of what it meant flew right over Amethyst's head.

"Well...well...wait..."

The stallion stopped and turned his head to look back at her.

Amethyst swallowed before continuing.

"...who are you?"

The stallion shrugged, and now she was sure she could make out a little smile on his face.

"A friend."

He turned away again, crouched for a moment, and then made a sudden leap upwards. His cloak swirled behind him, and there was a sudden gust of air that caused Amethyst to reflexively shut her eyes. When she opened them again, the stallion was gone, leaving nothing behind but a little swirl of disturbed dust and dirt that quickly sank back to the ground.

Author's Note:

And so begins the adventures of Supermane; strange visitor with powers and abilities far beyond those of mortal ponies, on a never ending quest for truth, justice...and perhaps a few other things we may not know yet...

Fun fact about this story; it actually started off as a Batman adaptation called The Batmare, about Luna turning to crime fighting to stave off boredom in retirement. The problem was that (a) I had trouble working out the plot, and (b) I'm quite frankly more of a Superman fan than I am a Batman fan. So write what you know, right?

And yes, I know that Supermane thus far is acting a wee bit different from the classic ideal of Superman, what with the more spooky nature and all. Don't worry, he's not gonna be some brutal edge-lord take on the character. God knows we already have enough of that.