• Published 20th Mar 2022
  • 1,492 Views, 32 Comments

A Burning Flame In My Soul - Rated Ponystar



After twenty years of being together, Spike is prepared to propose to Ember, but its delayed as rival power is seeking a legendary dragon sword to overthrow Ember and all she holds dear

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Chapter 10

Tyranus Redskull.

It took Ember only a few seconds to recall that name. She would never forget the name of the clan that had killed her father and attempted to do the same to her. The family who almost took Spike away from her and the ones who forced Garble, one of the only two good members of that clan, to sacrifice himself for her. It was a name that Smolder all but disowned herself from and spat on upon hearing it.

A name she never thought she would hear in present terms again, especially since Tyranus Redskull was supposed to be dead. Having died of an illness years ago, according to her spies, she was mistaken in thinking he was dead and gone. Ember knew he desired to avenge his clan and take her throne, so it was obvious who the target of all this chaos was in the first place.
The cloaked dragons glared at her with utter hate while Ember scoffed at the sight. "So this was your big assassination plan? Summon a bunch of puppies to kill me? Maybe if I was allergic to fur, that would work, but you guys need to do better."

"Silence, you false leader!" One of the cloaked dragons, a light crimson one with a dagger symbol medallion, shouted. "You are a traitor who has sold our people down the river by letting these inferiors and their culture destroy our own! We serve a true leader who will not only redeem our race from your and your father's actions but will restore the glory of our Empire once again!"

"I'm sure I'll learn plenty about how you and Tyranus plan on doing that when I beat it out of you," Ember replied as she cracked her neck. "You good, Twilight?"

Twilight nodded as she went to work, summoning a magical shield around her while disabling the summoning circles, which started to glow purple like her horn's magic aura. "Yes, I just need a few minutes."

"Won't be that long," Ember replied as she twirled her scepter.

One of the Cloaked Dragons decided that enough time had been spent talking and charged forward. Ember quickly parried the blow with her scepter, forcing the dragon to lose his footing. Turning to his back, Ember wrapped her arm around his neck and, with her great strength, threw him over her hip and onto the ground. She slammed her knee on his back, making him yelp, but that was silenced by a crack of his neck that Ember snapped with a thrust from her arm still wrapped around his throat. Letting the limp head go, she kicked the twitching body away and smirked. "Next?"

Instead of one this time, they decided to get smart and send three of them to Ember, who raised her scepter to block their blows flawlessly without hesitation. She never moved from her spot as they circled around her, trying to get in a blow, but she twirled her weapon around as steel met ancient steel. Seeing an opening, Ember kicked one of the dragons in the stomach, which made him lurch forward. She jumped onto his back, rolled over it, and kicked him in the hindquarters, which sent him stumbling into the other two, who grabbed him by reflex. Ember wanted this as she charged forward again, levitating into the air, and used both her knees to smash the faces of the two surprised assassins while dropping down and landing her rear end on the face of the kicked dragon. Her weight forced him to the stone floor, and the large sandwich-like impact knocked him out.

Ember got back up and used her scepter to smash the jeweled end into the faces of the other two, knocking their teeth out and sending them back. Instincts kicked in, and she ducked to avoid a sword thrust into her back. Using her tail, she attempted to trip the assassins, who jumped away, and the two locked weapons. However, Ember knew this was just a delaying tactic for another attack. Having been through so many assassinations, she knew their tricks. It didn't take long for her to hear the sound of a crossbow being notched from behind, and she ducked at the last minute to avoid it going right through her neck. It couldn't be the same for the other guy grappling his pierced throat in a desperate attempt to save his life while falling to his knees.

Three more assassins charged forward, and Ember was forced to cover herself with her wings as she was being assaulted by their flames. Despite popular belief, dragons were not always immune to fire if it was intense enough. It took a lot of training to get your scales properly hardened to defend yourself from multiple levels of fire. Thankfully, Ember had the best trainers from those who once personally trained with her father, and the flames fired at her felt like tickles.

Once they had finished breathing fire, Ember decided to show them how a real dragon uses their flames. She took a deep breath, feeling the everlasting burning sensation all her kind felt in their chests, and unleashed a wall of fire that sent all three of them back. They cried in horror and pain upon feeling actual burns on their bodies. Black melting scales dug into their flesh as they hugged their wounds in pain. They were so distracted that none saw Ember rush towards them and take them all down with her scepter.

Only a few more remained, and Ember wasn't even winded. The damn Shadow Hounds put up more of a fight than these guys.

"Tch," The crimson one, who she guessed was their leader, walked forward. "Disgraces to our clan! All of you! If you want something done right, you must do it yourself!"

Raising his sword, he growled, "Remember my name when you head into the afterlife, traitor! I am Captain Zerth of the-"

"Yeah, don't care!" Ember shouted as she charged forward and locked blows with the dragon. "Seriously! What kind of assassin talks to his target instead of killing them?!"

"Shut up!" Captain Zerth shouted as he pushed Ember away. "You will not defeat us all, Dragon Lord!"

"Don't need to," Ember said with a smirk before relaxing. "Hey, Twilight? You done?"

"Just about," Twilight said as she pulsed her horn one more time, and in an instant, all the magical seals and runes burst into purple ash. From outside the dungeon, although they couldn't see or hear it, the magical bonds that had tethered the Shadow Hounds to the current plane of existence shrieked in pain as they felt their beings erased from this world. In split instances, they were all banished back to their plane of existence, with some wondering what had just happened, but more were relieved that the fighting was over.

Standing next to Ember, Twilight glared at the nervous dragons, who looked at each other with worry. "And with that, they're gone. I suggest you surrender because it's late at night, and I do not like it when someone comes into my home and tries to kill my friends."

Captain Zerth hesitated for a minute before snarling and raising his sword again. "You think we are afraid of you, pony! We are of the noble dragon race and-"

Twilight's response was such a rapid-fire of magical blasts at all the remaining assassin dragons that Ember only had to blink before seeing all of them lying on the ground, smoking and moaning in pain. The two rulers just looked at each other and shrugged. "You'd think that they'd learn by now."

"Well, most villains don't have common sense," Ember chuckled before she turned around to see a group of her Scale Guards and some of Twilight's Royal Guards arrive. "Just in time. Subdue these guys and put them...well, we're in the dungeons right now, so just find a nice cell, I guess."

They saluted and did so by lifting the semi-unconscious dragons with their strength or magic. While doing so, Twilight turned to Ember and asked, "Tyranus Redskull. Is he?"

"The last of the clan that tried to kill me? Yeah," Ember growled. "Looks like he's not dead like I thought."

"You said he was trying to gather an army before he apparently died last time we spoke about him?" Twilight said with concern. "Do you think he's been building that army?"

"...Knowing his abilities as a leader and dragon? I don't think it's an army. It's a goddamn legion at this point."

***

While the damage to the overall palace was minimal, the death toll was higher than expected. While the attack itself was short, especially compared to previous incidents in the castle's history, that didn't mean there was a shortage of lost lives in the long run. Most of them were staff members, but there were guards and aids from all the races that had lost at least a dozen or slightly more casualties. Each leader made vows to ensure that their families would be well provided for and that the ones behind the assassination attempt would see justice delivered upon them.

Thankfully, all the VIPS were safe, with everyone having either helped in the defense or hid well enough to avoid being attacked. Twilight and Shining Armor instantly had both their troops prepare a blockade in and out of the city with orders that no creature was to leave under any circumstances with grounds for arrest if they persisted. Ember had also sent messages via Spike's flames to her ministers to prepare their forces for anything in case this led to any assault from Tyranus and to keep an eye out for any clans who could be inside supporters of his.

It wasn't before everyone soon went to the throne room to discuss what was going on and talk to the one who seemed to know ahead of time of the upcoming assassination. Rowan was doing his best to appear calm. Still, anyone could see that he was nervous upon standing before the leaders and heroes of Equestria, The Crystal Empire, Changeling Kingdom, Dragonlands, and Mt. Aries. Twilight sat on her throne with the other leaders standing beside her while everyone else watched Rowan.

Clearing her throat, Twilight started the conversation first, "Rowan Forestheart. On behalf of Equestria and all of us from the various kingdoms of the Alliance, we thank you for warning us of the assassination attempt on Dragon Lord Ember."

"I feel like I shouldn't be thanked," Rowan sighed. "I failed to get here properly to warn you all."

"You still warned us," Princess Cadence said with a nod. "That allowed us to react fast enough to aid Twilight and the others. Regardless, you should be commended for coming on a hard journey to warn us."

"Agreed," Ember seconded while raising her scepter. "Let it be known that I, Dragon Lord Ember, deem Rowan, a friend to my throne and lands. He will always have a safe place among my people."

"Thank you, Dragon Lord Ember," Rowan replied, bowing low.

"So, is it true that Tyranus Redskull is alive?" Spike asked, gritting his teeth. He had never met the dragon personally, but when Ember went on a warpath to eliminate anyone of the Redskull clan (save for Smolder), many of them vowed that he would be the one to avenge them all before they were executed.

"Figures," Smolder hissed while fire flared from her nostrils. "That bastard probably faked his death to let our guard down."

"So, does anyone want to tell us who this guy is?" Rainbow Dash asked, eyebrow raised.

"... He's my cousin," Smolder admitted with a sigh. "Well, former cousins since I disavow anyone left in my family. If there was anyone who my father and other traditionalists like him wanted to be Dragon Lord, it's him. He treated him more as a son than he did to my brother, and he helped raise him as well. The problem was Tyranus wasn't all bark. He was all bite as well. He's smart, deadly, powerful, charismatic, handsome, and knows every rule and tradition of Dragon culture. It was a shock to every dragon that he didn't get picked during the Call of the Dragon Lord like many assumed he would."

"I thought all teenage dragons accepted the Call?" Rarity asked.

"No, the scepter decides among all the dragons under the Dragon Lord's domain which would be qualified to be the next Dragon Lord. From there, the traditional contest is held to see who shall be the next leader," Ember said while nodding to the object in her grip. "It chose me, Spike, and Garble among those worthy of it, but not Tyranus."

"It was so awesome seeing everyone react to my brother getting the call and not Tyranus," Smolder said with a grin. "Everyone always saw him as unworthy of being the heir to our clan, and many wanted Tyranus to take over. Garble was always trying to prove himself worthy of it."
"Your brother was," Thorax said as he looked saddened upon remembering the young dragon's sacrifice all those years ago. "We still honor his memory."

"As do we all," Shining Armor said before sighing. "And if I remember correctly, Tyranus went into exile after his clan's destruction to gather an army to take over the Dragonlands, correct?"
"Yeah, he was gathering a big following as well," Ember growled. "Occasionally, we would hear news of a foreign or exiled clan joining him. A lot of big-name ones with powerful attributes. We tried sending assassins, but that didn't work out, and he was too far away for us to send our forces to deal with him."

Not that it would have mattered since most of the dragon population was being used to focus on things internally to see Ember's vision of a better land for her people come through. Tyranus had taken advantage of that to focus on building his forces and reputation.

"No offense, but if Tyranus is this smart and ultra-tough guy, he would know he's outnumbered by the Alliance, right?" Applejack asked as she scratched her head. "All of our nations have military treaties, and if one of us is attacked, the other will come rushin' in to save them."

"That's why Tyranus is seeking the ultimate weapon that could help him win," Rowan stated, which got attention on him. "He doesn't seek to be the Dragon Lord. He wants to rebuild the Great Dragon Empire with him as the first Emperor. He seeks to take over the Dragonlands, Equestria, and all other lands with it."

"How?" Spike asked in disbelief.

"By seeking one of the most powerful weapons that the world has ever seen before. That which was forged by the Dragon Gods and has destroyed empires, ruined civilizations and ended the existence of numerous other races in the conquest of ultimate power. The blade of Kratorix, the First Dragon Emperor, known as Imperiax."

Author's Note:

Sorry for the lack of updates the past two months. I recently got a new position in my job that was temp (and may lead to a new position in a week or two so that's even more changes) and I was adjusting to that while focusing on what fics I could do.

Promise a new update will come later this month.

Please help out at the TV Tropes Page: https://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Fanfic/AGrowingFireInMyHeart