• Published 15th Apr 2021
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The Fall of the Anoian - bookhorse125

Equestria is not the only land full of magical creatures. Welcome to Anoia.

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Chapter Twenty-One - Red

The room was silent.

What?” Red’s jaw dropped.

“You can read minds and see the future,” Flurry said simply. This did not help matters.

Red couldn’t fully process what the light pink alicorn in front of her was saying. Read minds and see the future…? Those were all cool powers, but ponies didn’t just have them just because. It would explain where her dreams were coming from, and how she knew that Lupines was scared of her. She couldn’t exactly explain it; she just knew that Lupines was scared of what she might do. He must have known about her powers… But she couldn’t have those powers. That was just crazy. No way could she do that… And yet, there was a layer of truth and certainty underneath Flurry’s words. She was sure.

“Red can read minds?” Marylyn demanded. “And see the future?” Flurry nodded.

“Red, have you ever noticed that you’re the only pegacorn in all of Anoia with green eyes?” Flurry said, turning back to Red.

“Um, no?” Red was silent after she said this. “I mean, I noticed that I was the only pony in this city with green eyes that I had seen, but surely there’s other ponies out there with green eyes, too, right?” Flurry shook her head.

“I used to think I was captured because I was the youngest alicorn and would be considered easier,” Flurry explained. “But now I know it was because I knew something about Anoia. I found a really old book in the library one day and read about a legend of ponies with both wings and horns who had eyes like forests.”

“What does that have to do with anything?” Marylyn inquired. Red had been wondering the same thing.

“These ponies had visions from time to time about events that would happen in the future. They could also trace paths into the future. They could also read the thoughts and emotions of anypony close to them.” Flurry looked from Red to Marylyn, as if she was waiting for them to put two and two together. Marylyn’s face was blank, but Red figured it out.

Me?” she asked, pointing to herself. “You’re saying that I can read minds and see the future?” Flurry nodded, deadly serious. “But… why couldn’t I do this before?”

“Lupines was really worried about your powers,” Flurry said. “So he did something to you that prevented you from using them. Once you left for Equestria, those actions were reversed, and you could use your powers again. That’s when you first had your visions, right?”

“That makes sense,” Marylyn said. “Lupines wanted all powerful ponies under his watch and working for him so that there wouldn’t be any rogue ponies with the power and the drive to overthrow him.”

“Go on, try them out,” Flurry urged.

“Um… how?”

“Just try,” insisted Flurry. She and Marylyn stood in the doorway, giving Red some space. Sighing, Red reluctantly closed her eyes.

Come on, she thought fiercely. Mind reading powers, please.

Instantly, her mind was bombarded with noises and sounds.

Wonder if she can really do it. Would be cool if she could. I wish I had powers like that. The voice in Red’s head was Flurry’s voice. She was hearing the alicorn’s thoughts.

Does this mean she knows? Marylyn thought frantically. She seemed to know earlier… but maybe she was just bluffing… I’m not safe anymore…

Okay, Red thought, that was great. Please turn it off again. Her head continued to ache with the thoughts of the other two ponies in the room. Turn it off, commanded Red inside her head. I’ve had enough. Turn it off NOW!!!

That did it. Flurry and Marylyn’s thoughts left her head as quickly as they’d come. Red sighed in relief.

All right, one power down. One to go. Red concentrated for a moment, wishing to see her future. Different paths opened up in her mind. If she agreed, she could lead Anoia to a bright and hopeful future. However, there was the possibility that another pony like Lupines would come along and tear down everything she’d built. If she declined, Anoia would either remain government-less for the time being, or Twilight would take over and everything would be combined into one country under one single ruler. A dictatorship. Even if Twilight would be a just and good ruler, that didn’t guarantee that future rulers would be.

Red blinked her eyes open. Flurry and Marylyn were staring at her expectantly. Red burst into a grin.

“I take it that they work?” Marylyn inquired. Thoughts immediately crowded into Red’s head, giving her a mild headache.

OhnoI’mdoomedshe’ssuretoknowwhatdoIdowhatdoIdowhatdoIdo? Red firmly beat those thoughts back along with the burst of fear that came with them and nodded.

“Woah,” Flurry muttered. “What’s it like?”

“Um, strange,” Red admitted. “But I’m sure I’ll get the hang of them.”

“What’s going on with my aunt and my mom?” demanded Flurry, stepping forward.

“I can’t see what’s going on right now-”

“Yes, but you can see what’s going to happen in a second.” Flurry’s turquoise eyes were wide and pleading. “Please, Red. I need to know that they’re going to be alright.”

Red sighed and closed her eyes again. She saw Twilight’s future and followed the path.

“Um, they’re fighting the guards at the guardhouse - or, if they aren’t, they will be very soon,” Red reported. “Twilight’s friends are helping them, and they’ll win unless a guard gets away and comes back with reinforcements. No, wait, that future disappeared. One of them will try to get away, but the prisoners have been freed and aren’t too happy. And if I don’t go over there and order them to retreat-” Red gulped and reported the future she saw, “-they’ll all be killed.”

“Well, then, what are you waiting for?” Flurry demanded. Red’s eyes snapped open and she saw Flurry standing on the windowsill, her wings spread. “Let’s go get ‘em!”

Flurry leaped out the window and into the fresh night air. Red and Marylyn followed. As they neared the guardhouse, panicked thoughts crowded in Red’s mind, accompanied by determined and furious thoughts. She stopped in midair and clutched her head, forcing up barriers and blocking the voices in her head. Marylyn caught her before she fell out of the sky.

“Are you alright?” Marylyn’s light pink eyes were full of concern. Red nodded and righted herself.

“I’m fine. Just adjusting. Come on.” Red turned to the guardhouse and tucked her wings into a dive, Marylyn and Flurry following a heartbeat later. She spread her wings and banked to a stop, landing gracefully in front of the door. Two thuds behind her told her that Flurry and Marylyn were right behind her.

“Well?” Flurry looked ready to jump into battle herself. Her wings were twitching and she kept stamping her hooves as if she couldn’t stand to stay still. Red exhaled and ran through the door, opening it with her magic. She skidded to a halt almost immediately, however, when she saw the battle in front of her.

The cell doors were all unlocked and the prisoners were fighting Red’s own soldiers. Twilight and Cadance were flying through the mayhem, blasting with their horns and knocking dozens of Anoians unconscious. Rainbow Dash and Applejack were both engaged in hoof-to-hoof combat with their own soldiers. Pinkie Pie was dashing from place to place so fast it was like she was teleporting. The Anoians who were unlucky enough to cross paths with her were either blasted with a party cannon, smashed in the face with a cake or a pie, tied up with streamers with party hats on, or driven insane by Pinkie’s madness. Fluttershy was sitting on the side of the battle with a pale orange pegasus Anoian who was in tears. Fluttershy was patting him on the back and talking to him gently. Rarity had fainted from shock over the small scratch above her horn, and Spike was fiercely defending her by setting any guards who were foolish enough to get close on fire.

Flurry immediately launched herself to her mother’s side and began fighting for her. Marylyn crept up next to Fluttershy and cowered behind her. Fluttershy looked like she didn’t know exactly what to make of this. Red flew above the battle.

“ANOIANS!!” she shouted in a strong, clear voice. The fighting slowed and then stopped altogether as the Anoian guards pulled back and turned to face their commander. “Surrender and retreat! These creatures are leaving for their home and they will succeed in getting there. Nothing you can do will stop that. So pull back!”

“But…” one of the guards spoke up tentatively. “What about Emperor Lupines? Surely he’ll be furious at us.” The other guards made sounds of agreement and started eyeing the Equestrians like they were prepared to pick up where this battle had left off.

“Emperor Lupines is dead,” Red informed them firmly. Everypony there gasped and stared at her as if she had four wings instead of just two. “I killed him myself. And with all the power and authority invested in me, I declare Anoian’s complete surrender from this war and declare our official alliance with Equestria and the surrounding kingdoms.”

The silence that followed was deafening.

“Lupines is really dead?” another soldier peeped. Red nodded.

“The war’s over?” Cadance inquired. She was holding Flurry close as if she was afraid that her daughter would disappear if she didn’t hold on to her at all times.

“Yes,” Red confirmed. She landed gently on the floor and eyed them all. Twilight flew over and landed next to Red.

“I agree to our alliance and hope that both of our nations will be led to prosperous futures without conflict,” she said brightly.

“Wait, our nations?” Red asked quietly.

“Well, you’re going to rule Anoia from now on, right?”

Author's Note:

Constructive criticism is appreciated.