• Published 20th Nov 2012
  • 1,195 Views, 22 Comments

The Rise of a King: Act I - Medici



Almost 200 years since the exile of the Nordic ponies after a civil war against Princess Celestia, a new ruler claims the throne. His younger brother, Dietrich Monetlius, a renown Nordic historian, grows weary of his brother's true intentions...

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Prologue: Nordic Ponies

The ocean's rough waves crash upon the rocky cliffs reaching up well over three-hundred feet. At the top is a thin layer of green grass with patches of rock surfacing every once in a while. In the distance, through fields of treeless grassland and stone fences are rolling hills and mountains and reaching to the heavens. The seagulls calling, the crashing of the waves, the chilly winds, the near cloudless sunny sky, the beautiful view both inland and out; this is truly nature at its best.

Along the top of the cliff is road paved in rocks that have been set many years ago.

"This is my home." a deep masculine accented voice narrates. "There is no other place like these islands anywhere else. No scenery like in this part of the world."

Coming up a hill on the road to the left of the view you gaze upon, a covered wagon is being towed by two rather large stallions, each with two different shades of visibly thick brown fur, different shades of blue eyes, and blond manes. They are being led by a stallion slightly smaller than the two ponies pulling the wagon. He is wearing a gray hooded cloak, dotted with various animal furs and plaid designs, moving rather slowly to stay at pace with the wagon moving the same speed. His Cutie Mark is visible. It was a sword crossed with a quill pen on top of his russet brown thick fur. His tail was goldenrod blond at medium length, longer than most males, one section of the tail is tied into a braid.

"The land you look upon now is the southern nation of Druidia, one of the two nations that make up the Nordic Isles. This nation is named after a separate faction in the Nordic race that founded and rule this nation; the Druids. Me? No. I'm not a Druid, I am Carolean from the nation of the tundra and snowy mountains of the north, Caroland. Named after our last true King, and the last of Hjorvard's bloodline whose native to my lands, King Carolus; during a time when the Nordics were still united."

Your view still shows the small caravan of three moving up the stone road moving north, surrounded by the green grass. With the edge of the high cliff off to the left side of the road, and the endless view of rocky grasslands to the right, the scene was gorgeous.

"Look at me, I'm getting ahead of myself. Most of you Equestrians don't even know what is a Nordic pony is! I'll start from who we are, and then I'll briefly get into our history. We have some time until this caravan reaches it's destination anyways. In fact, let's fast forward a bit..."

Your view suddenly is transformed as if through magic; it is nighttime now. The three thickly furred ponies are still walking at their pace, but the scenery has altered. In the clear night sky, not only Luna's moon sits high at Half Crescent, the stars twinkle bright. But that is the least of that the sky shows. All across the sky, steams of blues and green soar in almost in a ribbon shape. The northern lights shine bright.

On the ground, around the stone road, thanks to the light from the moon and the northern lights, you can see that the ground is now a brown-ish-red, with green shrubs dotting the area. The landscape looks hillier than before, and the mountains in the distance seem closer and are covered in snow. Unlike before where the mountains took up just a portion of the horizon to the east, now they almost surround the caravan by the distant mountains on all three sides. The ocean to the west, now calm compared to before, dominates the fourth side. The road is still near the rocky coastline, but it is moved a little farther from the edge, and the cliff is not nearly as high as before either. Off towards the ocean, rock formations can be seen sticking out of the water, and with the moon's light reflecting off the calm waters, the sight could not be any more divine. The winds are still powerful, and even colder than before.

"You are now in Caroland. Is it not beautiful? So back to my tale, the Nordic ponies are an entirely separate race of ponies from the main three in Equestria. A fourth race if you will; although many Equestrian anatomy professionals disagree. They claim we are an ethnic group among the Earth ponies. This is false. We are very closely related to your Earth ponies, yes this is true, for we do not posses wings like a Pegasus, or a horn like a Unicorn, and our stamina is incomprehensible, like an Earth pony. Besides our physical appearance of thicker fur and larger physique, the major thing that differs us from the Earth pony is our ability of magic."

The caravan approaches and begins to ascend up a hill that blocks the view in front of them.

"Our magic, however, is limited. Always has been. In comparison, some of our greatest 'wizards' as you call them, have only fraction of the power of a common Unicorn. For us to learn magic and master the spells that may seem simple to most Unicorns, it takes years to learn. However, we do have a strong point in our ability of magic. We have an immunity to nearly all forms of evil and chaotic magic, as well as attack magic, but that is only the beginning. We have a special ability that enables us to use magic that no other pony besides Nordics can use. It is impossible for a Unicorn, or even an Alicorn to cast, for these spells are much like Cutie Marks, they are not specifically personal to the caster, per se; but they are unique, and have extraordinary power. Every Nordic pony has this gift of their own special spell, but having the gift and able to cast it are two different things. It takes years for one to discover the gift, let alone master it. I am one of the few ponies nowadays who takes the time to find, and master this gift. What is mine? Well... I'll tell you later."

The caravan is halfway up the hill. Unnatural light looms over the hill, and and with each step the caravan takes towards the top the light becomes brighter.

"In Equestria, you probably have been told that every pony in the world are all herbivores. This is not the case for the Nordic ponies: we eat both meat and plants. This makes us the only race to be omnivores. Through the evolutionary process, most of our ethnic history was being in snowy wastelands; where food is hard to grow, even in the non-snowy seasons. We instead have gone to the food of the lesser animals. That's just how nature and evolution works! Plus, their pelts make great clothing for the snowy seasons. Even in these thick furs, we can still freeze in some of the blizzards we get here."

The caravan reaches the top of the hill and the view ahead is clear again. In the distance is the source of the unnatural light. A vast, walled city. In the center of the residential houses of wood and stone is a steep hill with a large stone castle that sits on top, towering above the city. I has four tall towers on each corner and one wide, but shorter tower in the back. In front of the entire settlement is a wide river the leads into the ocean. Next to that lies a rock formation right at the corner where the river meets the saltwater of the ocean. The rock is similar to the castle's, but much, much thinner. On top of that sits a stone tower, built right into the rock formation, making it almost appear the rock is apart of the tower. On top of the tower has a lit fire, one that can be seen for miles on end.

The hooded stallion stops walking and motions the caravan to stop, he removes his gray hood with a hoof revealing his smiling and relieved face. His face was broad and stern, but with a sense of honesty coming from it. His eyes were a dark shade of blue, his mane was at medium length with a goldenrod blond shade of color flowing in the chilly winds. His bangs were parted to his left side where the tip of the hairs just graze his eyebrow. One small braid beside the left side of his face just in between his ear and eye that stretched down past his jaw that dangled and flowed in the wind, bouncing off his cheek. This braid had two beads that made the most contact with the young stallion's face in the wind, one red and the other green, with small Celtic designs carved in them that was tied halfway down the braid.

"Alan vasian arraka, Dietrich?" called one of the ponies towing the wagon.
(Why have we stopped, Dietrich?)

"Biaka ta hayen" called back the stallion before he started moving again towards the city.
(Just enjoying the view.)

The city has four walls, all in the shape of a circle around the castle. The first and innermost, being the smallest appears to be in rough shape as age looks like it got the best of it. It’s towers long abandoned and most of the wall sat in aged ruins.This wall surrounds the hill of which the castle sits on. After a mess of buildings thrown together, clearly the old section of the city, another aged wall stands. Aged and weathered like the first, the wall still stands tall and strong, even with the towers on this have to been long abandoned. After this wall it appears that the city is more organized and clearly was planned. The third wall looked much newer and stood strong with small towers symmetrically located, although it was thinner than the second wall. The outermost wall of the city was the largest of them all with towers to equal it's might. This wall instead of a circle, forms a U shape with the two ends stopping about 100-feet into the oceans waters, guarding the city's harbors and shipyards. On top of every tower holds large flag poles waving large banners. The same banner drapes the outward sides of the towers, however, even with the light from the moon and the northern lights, it is too dark to see the details of the flags. Unlike the other three walls, these walls have large holes on top to hold cannon positions. The only thing that stands outside the city walls are a few houses and couple acres of farmland.

"Welcome to Hjalmar," the voice narrates again. "the oldest city in the world – literally. There is no other city that still stands that is older. This city is the birthplace of Hjorvard who lived over 5,000 years ago. That lighthouse - Hjorvard Tower; is the oldest standing structure in the world, and is still being used like it did five millennium ago. That was around even before Hjorvard; the castle and the innermost wall were built during Hjorvard's reign. The city and the lighthouse are named after him."

The caravan descends down the hill towards Hjalmar at a faster pace than their previous pace.

"Who is this 'Hjorvard' I have said so much about, you ask? Hjorvard is our most important historical figure. He was one of the first rulers of civilized society in pony history. Long before Princess Celestia, Discord, King Sombra, and even the founding of Equestria, Hjorvard ruled the Nordics and was the first to create civilized life and to create a society, as well as an organized military. His greatest achievement was his conquest of the entire world, even in the distant continents. During that time, most of the world was made up of tribal nomads."

"Dietrich, biet fam conisum futan?" asks one of the stallions pulling the wagon.
(Dietrich, what is in this wagon anyway?)

"Relics. Relics en fuan Bibracte. Ambian arrkon da King Carolus." Dietrich answers back.
(Relics. Relics from Bibracte. They said they belonged to King Carolus.)

"According to legend, there was one other nation across the ocean that rivaled the Nordic's empire. Hjorvard spent over 20 years fighting that kingdom. That is only about half of the King’s accomplishments; it is said in folklore that it was he who defeated dozens of legendary monsters, including a full grown rampaging Ursa Major on his own. His legacy still lives to this very day as our deity figure and the commander of the largest army the world has ever witnessed. The words he spoke were bold and true. His main message was how conflict is always inevitable and peace must be balanced by war, or else peace loses it's value and the next conflict will be more catastrophic as a result. Hjorvard had written a set of commandments that we follow in our society like a holy scripture. He took everything he both liked and what seemed to work from the tribes he conquered and put it all in one set of rules of how government should run it's subjects, and the traditions to follow and honor; all onto paper."

"Unfortunately, Hjorvard is one of, if not, the most misinterpreted historical figures in history. Some historians admire him almost as a God, some despise him, claiming him to be a warmongering barbarian. Those same historians also claim every Nordic to be a barbarian and have won the opinions of Equestria to fear, and ultimately, forget us. But that's some other argument, and I think you get the idea behind Hjorvard, let's move along. You'll know more about him as I tell you the story I want to tell you."

The caravan passes by the lighthouse tower on top of the rock formation, almost at the stone bridge that crosses the river.

"Now, let’s fast forward about 3,000 years, the Nordic Empire shrinks from it's former glory. Entirely new nations take the place of the lands that Hjorvard once claimed. The Nordics still hold ground in today's Nordic Isles, the Frozen North, and in Equestria. Even though Equestria was already 'founded', it was still of sphere of influence under the Nordics and the Crystal Empire was not yet founded. It was at this time when Discord claimed entitlement of the Equestrian lands. For nearly 1,000 years he ruled, and his control of chaos was devastating. Fortunately, the Nordics were able to cage his power and keep Discord's influence to remain in Equestria and not to spread to the rest of the world."

Dietrich reaches the arched stone bridge over the river. It is the home stretch to the main gates of the city.

"During Discord's reign, the Nordics kept his chaos at bay by fighting him back and keeping his influence in the Equestrian borders. Thanks to the recent discovery of gunpowder, and help from our special magic, we were immune to Discord's powers and fought back with primitive firearms and cannons, which were enough to tame the beast. This was the most we can do; we even got help from other nations, including help from the Crystal ponies, and this was still barely enough to tame Discord, let alone stop him. Almost 1,000 years pass of fending off the chaos, King Carolus claims the throne and defends his lands from a monstrous invasion from Discord. King Carolus was also born here in Hjalmar and was the last King of Hjorvard's bloodline for he had no siblings, nor offspring. He was also the last King where the Nordics will remain united."

The caravan reaches the main gate, greeted by a group of eight guards each wearing identical uniforms. Blue wool uniforms with many buttons up the middle of the torso to the collar and on the cuffs to their front hooves. The collars stuck out with thick white sheep wool. The torso is crossed with a yellow strap up the the left shoulder, holding in place satchels to their sides. The strap connected to a yellow belt that looped around their bellies. The uniform stops at the belt except for the backside that continues to the tails, because of this their cutie marks are still visible. On their backs were muskets attached with bayonets at the end of the long barrel. The firearms are strapped around their bodies, although still easily reachable when needed. To their left sides, strapped to the yellow belt was a sheathed sword, on their right side was a holstered flintlock pistol. On their heads were black 3-pointed tricorne hats with a blue and yellow cockade and white outlining of the fold.

"Ti nay Polence?" one asks.
(Is that the Prince?)

"Dia en tin" cried Dietrich. "Fian con dienme?"
(Indeed it is.) (How fairs my father?)

"Non Bien," said the soldier. "do man fuan con castille en sarrakan)
(Not good, you should head up to the castle and see him.)

"Kan man fuan traciliant tes, tian do"
(I will head up immediately, thank you.)

The caravan moves past the guards and into the outer section of the city. Ponies happily moved about, most of which stumbling about as the a tavern was almost the first building in. All the buildings are made of both wood and stone with straw rooftops. There is the presence of an industrial feel as several smokestacks towered above the city and the smell of both smoke and fish from the harbor was intoxicating. The road the caravan was currently on was the widest and busiest as it was the main road that went up to each gate to the castle. There were market stands left and right, even at night this market was busy.

"Look at this, everyone seems to be enjoying the non-snowy season. Common sight in Hjarmar at night with no snow on the ground. Anyways, King Carolus was the one who led the Nordics through an entire decade of constant warfare against the invading force of Discord. Most of the fighting took place either on our ships at sea, or in the snowy wastelands you call the Crystal Empire. This was also the time King Sombra was in power, who at first was on our side despite the Crystal and Nordic pony's long-time ethnic rivalry; but that is for another time also. It wasn't until after the defeat of Discord, and the Nordics return home is where Sombra became the tyrant you know today."

The caravan reaches the next gate into the next section of the city. This section was more residential and quieter, although the main road still consisted of many thickly furred ponies, none of which were stumbling drunk as before.

"When Discord was focused on taking over the Crystal Empire and the Nordic Isles with his decade-long invading force, his back was turned from Equestria where two Alicorns, native to Discord's lands, took action. These Alicorns are none other than your beloved Celestia and Luna. They rose up against Discord just before another epic battle between his forces and the combined forces of the Nordics and Crystal ponies was to begin. He was turned him to stone and the ponies that suffered from Discord's chaos had ended. Without our King Carolus, and I guess King Sombra, though he barely helped in the effort against Discord, your Princesses would probably not be in power. I bet that to was left out of your textbooks as well."

At the final gate before the final gate to the castle's stairs and wagon path the caravan enters the Old City. This had a mixture of everything from residential homes, taverns, factories, temples, markets, guard barracks; all mushed together in one section.

"Shortly after Discord's defeat, and the sudden change in Sombra's leadership to tyranny, which ultimately lead to his defeat from Celestia and Luna as well as the Crystal Empire's curse, King Carolus was killed by a shot in the dark at his own fort just outside of Equestian borders. No one knows where the bullet came from or who shot it, but it killed the King instantly. This then lead to civil unrest among the Nordics. The Caroleans, Nordics from the northern half of the Nordic Isles claimed it was the Druids of the southern half. The Druids blamed the Caroleans. These two factions were all called Caroleans during Carolus' regime, and the Druids have never given themselves a name until at this time of civil depute, but have always hated each other since Hjorvard's death through religious and political ideals; but for the first time their disagreements have turned to violence. The Nordics have gone into a civil war than lasted about six years."

The caravan reaches the final gate of the ancient walls. There were two ways to the castle; stairs or a leveled pathway made for carriages and other transports. They were stopped at the gate by a group of blue and yellow uniformed soldiers with muskets on their backs and black and white tipped 3-pointed tricorne hats.

"Halt" one cried.

"Ett salg nin, Dietrich, dian la krig" Dietrich says.
(It is me, Dietrich, let me pass)

"Dietrich, tian Gott. Do dienme con biaktrat le stud."
(Dietrich, thank God. Your father looks worse by the day.)

"Kian da tun. Premin carolean, hash fan rranaktat barrakius"
(So I hear. Be well soldier, times of sorrow are ahead.)

The caravan moves past the soldiers and heads up the wagon path that swerves along side the staircase to the castle gates into the courtyard.

"The Nordic Isles were devastated from the conflict, and refugees began to flee to peaceful Equestria where Celestia and pre-Nightmare Moon, Luna greeted them with open arms. Soon the civil war ended and the Nordic Isles where split into two, Druidia to the highland south, and Caroland to the tundra north. Those thousands who fled to the newly formed Equestria stayed and began to have room in Celestia's court which was still only about a decade old. It was at this time when many Nordics stayed, and lived in Equestria during a new dynasty of harmony and peace."

"Fast forward again to about 800 years, about 200 years from present day, centuries after that whole mess with Luna's transformation to Nightmare Moon, the Nordic ponies are just as common to see in Equestria as any of the other three races. After ruling a nation and maintaining balance for 800 years, Celestia grows more forceful in her rule. Imposing high taxes, forming discriminating laws against both Nordics and Pegasai alike, and banning valuable traditions of the two races; including the ban of the worship of Hjorvard, and Celestia's full control of Cloudsdale where the Pegasai have always obtained their own rule. This creates much civil unrest throughout the entire nation."

Ascending on the transport path to the castle gate, the view of the city is breathtaking, the sight of the 3 districts he was in only seconds ago. Dietrich admires the view of the outer towers, with the large silhouettes of the flags above the towers flapping away from the ocean. He can see the stone road outside the city he was just on.

"Finally, the Nordics and the Pegasai formed an alliance to fight against Princess Celestia, as well as many Earth and Unicorn ponies who to felt oppressed by the Sun Regent. Thus began a civil war that spanned over 30 years. During this time millions have suffered the wrath of war and Equestria, for the first, and only time under Celestia's regime had laid in scorched ruins. Many battles were fought, each with cannons, muskets, swords, and barbaric brute force, all of which non-existent in modern Equestria. Finally, the Nordics were defeated by Celestia and had to pay the price for the devastation of the country with the Edict of Harmony. The Edict insured that the entire Nordic race was to be exiled for 500 years to their fatherland. The Edict of Harmony also allowed the Pegasai to be set free to live among Equestrian life once more, and Cloudsdale to be ruled by the Pegasai once again. The Nordics were shipped back to these islands in droves, and these islands have been blockaded by the Equestrian Navy ever since to insure no one escapes. Let's just say Princess Celestia is not the most popular among my ponies. In fact, she is vilified for her decision and her treatment of my ponies. To many Nordics, she is considered a demon."

"The war had it's toll on Princess Celestia and her psyche. Ever since, she has been obsessed with harmony, peace, and kinship to make up for the devastation that she herself had caused. Although the physical evidence of the war is gone in Equestria, cities and towns were rebuilt and forests regrown; Celestia is still suffering from the memories. Many ponies died by her hoof, rebel or not. And here we stand; thanks to the Edict of Harmony, us Nordics are forced to never leave these islands. Never to visit or trade with other nations to grow our own economy and our expand our own technology. Nonetheless, you now know a brief overview of who the Nordic ponies are, now I can tell my story, hopefully without arising any questions."

The caravan crosses the castle gates being saluted by the posted guards. The caravan comes to a halt in the front of the main steps into the throne room.

"Tian do corrats," Dietrich says to the stallions pulling the wagon as they unhinge themselves. "Do forray kafein darraken, komina drig caroleans uminance en relics."
(Thank you friends, You are free to go, the guards know what to do with the relics.)

The stallions nod as they part way with Dietrich who is making his way up the steps to the castle.

"In case you have not realized yet, this is me." the voice narrates once again. "My name is Dietrich Montelius. I am the youngest son of the Jarl of Caroland. Since there has not been a King since the death of King Carolus and cease the Hjorvard bloodline, the Jarl, in your tongue means Governor, is to rule in their stead until Hjorvard returns to crown a new dynasty of Kings. So legend says at least. I want to start my story here because this is the last night I will have my normal life."

Dietrich enters the castle's throne room after a series of massive iron doors. It is too dark to get details, but it clear that the ceiling is several stores high with lit torches dotting the stone columns that was perpendicular to the throne itself at the end of the large room. On each column was the same flags the waved proudly on the outer towers in the dark, but it was hanging sideways and the flag was clear from the torch light. A blue banner with a yellow X crossing at the middle and ending at each corner of the banner.

Dietrich stopped to admire the stain glass window above the throne lit by the moon outside, one of 6 other windows in that room that tells major events in Nordic history. Above the throne's window held a clear image of Hjorvard in a heroic pose having one hoof firmly on the neck of a slain dragon and a sword securely in the head of the dragon being held by the other hoof.

After staring at the window for what seemed like minutes, pointing out the flaws in Hjorvard's appearance, he started to hear the sounds of metal clashing and masculine grunting towards a wooden door opened ajar on the right side of the room. Dietrich knows exactly what it is. He chuckles and shakes his head before walking to the door and enters the stone corridor.

He walks about about ten feet down the hall that was lit by torches. On the right side of the hall, opposite of a spiral staircase, this to made of stone, was an open door into a training room that was lit bright like the day. In the middle of the room were four uniformed soldiers holding muskets with sharp bayonets at the muzzles surrounding, and attacking a stallion also in the blue uniform without the tricorne, all standing on their back hooves, holding their weapons in their front. The uniform on the stallion in the middle was more prestigious and extravagant as it had metals, emblems, and fancy lace all over it. His fur was a lighter shade of brown than Dietrich's, and his mane was a dark brown, almost a black shade of color at a shorter length compared to Dietrich's with one braid along the back right of his neck. His bangs were brought back to a small ponytail behind his head. His cutie mark a rapier sword pointed diagonally up-right. His tail was short and unkempt with no braids like Dietrich's. The stallion was holding a rapier sword in a hoof with an aristocratic-like pose instead of a musket like the other four, ready for an attack from the four guards.

"Ket Torras! Torras!" cried the extravagant colt.
(Come On, attack! Attack!)

Dietrich half smiled and leaned at the doorway and waits to see what happens.

One soldier lunges at the extravagant colt with the bayonet. It is blocked and tossed aside from the sword, after much twists and turns around the colt from his behind blocked a sneak attack from the soldier behind the colt. The two soldiers who have yet to move lunge forward at once. The colt ducks and flips his back hooves all the way around to trip both attackers. The colt gets up and blocks another attack and shoves the soldier into a post. The last soldier just stands there on his hind legs holding the firearm at the ready, waiting for eye contact with the extravagant colt.

The colt slowly turns to meet the soldier's blue eyes with his dark brown with a sly smirk on his face. The colt flips the sword with a hoof and twists it around his back; rotating the blade back to the front he points it at the soldier. kneeing him in the gut and shoved aside like trash.

"Do Logian! Tiet de foal co kiet. Da imiagio yamas fot con umpiant. Et caroleans, do forre hymeckian keesain un geit trabarram komiam." the colt said without any evidence of exhaustion.
(You see! That wasn't so bad. I told you I won't hurt you. As soldiers, you must remain stable at all times and always think ahead of your opponent.)

The soldiers slowly put their muskets back onto their backs and returned to all four hooves on the ground, bowing their heads accepting the young stallion's advice, still dazed from losing a 4:1 fight.

"That is Milos 'Quick-Blade' Sjard." Dietrich narrates, "He is the son of my father's steward, and my best friend since our childhoods. Him and I have been through so much, the good, the bad, the awkward, you name it. He is one the last ponies in the world to master the Art of the Quick-Blade; a fighting style that was invented by one of Hjorvard's top officers, and taught the Art to his higher officers to both be flawless in battle and put fear into the less trained enemies. Today, less than a dozen actually have mastered it, and Milos being the youngest."

"Now," Deitrich narrates again, "I don't know about you, but I think it's fair since I am showing my story to an Equestrian like yourself, that this should be translated. I'm going to be quiet for a while, ans I know for a fact that you do not speak Nordic, everyone here on the Nordic Isles does; and personally, I hate reading subtitles. Give me a sec..."

"Trrakiat... English!"
(Translate!)

"There, now the rest of this story is translated into Equestrian English unless if the Nordic language is needed again. So, let's continue, shall we?"

Milos sees Dietrich at the doorway. "Dietrich!" he cried, "You crazy tail chaser, you! Did I not tell you those Druid girls were gorgeous! When did you get back?"

"Yes. Indeed they were, and I just walked in." Dietrich replied coming off the doorway and stepping into the training room.

"Good, good. Please tell me you got some." Milos stated with a tone of sarcasm.

"One might say that." Dietrich replied with a smile.

Milos laughed briefly and turned to the soldiers. "You men are free to go." he turns back to Dietrich, "Come, you can tell me all about it tomorrow when we hunt some game. For now, though, we have much to discuss; much has happened since you left for Druidia." he said sheathing his sword to a case on his left side.

Milos walked out of the training room and back into the darkened hallways, he motioned Dietrich to go up their spiral stairs directly across the hall. Dietrich follows and walks up the spiral stone stairs alongside his blue uniformed friend.

"Is it my father?" Dietrich asked.

"Yes, but there's more. Your brother has already gotten the vote from the Moot to be Jarl." Milos said solemnly.

"What? How? The Moot cannot decide the new Jarl until the death of the predecessor."

"I know, many of us are concerned just as much as you, but most Nordics side with Heinrich because his mutual hatred of Princess Celestia. That's how he won the Moot." Milos said as the two colts went up two flights and opened the door to another long and dark corridor, with only torches and the moonlight from small windows on the left side to serve as light. The two take a left from the staircase.

Dietrich frowned, "Equestria? Heinrich has talked about Equestria and and his hatred for Celestia before, and I tried reasoning with him that Celestia had her reasons to banish us. Her nation was torn between the races and most of the nation was burned. Millions of ponies bled and cried for justice; it was us who started the civil war and we lost. She almost had no choice." Dietrich says trying to dig memories out from past idle conversations.

"To no avail, right?" Milos asked.

"Right."

"I'm not keen on Celestia either, but I also agree; she did have her reasons."

"What has Heinrich been doing since I was gone?" Dietrich asked moving on from more history.

"Rallying his future subjects. Spreading his hatred of Equestria and his so-called 'plans' to restore the Nordics to it's former glory. Most of us seem to be excited for the new leadership, others are like me, a little uneasy."

"Plans? What plans?" Dietrich asked with almost worry in his voice.

"'To purify the fatherland' he says. Sounds more like an inquisition. But just honey words of the true evil, and the ponies see it to be something of good intentions." Milos says rather angrily.

"History has shown these same occasions many times, and yet ponies never seem to learn." Dietrich says, lowering his eyes to the floor solemnly.

"And this is why Hjorvard spoke true, conflict will always be inevitable as a result." Milos spoke also solemnly.

"And what of my father?" asked Dietrich changing the subject.

"Not good. He had lost all mobility and his ability to speak since you left. He is basically a vegetable ready to go at any moment."

"I wish to see him." Dietrich states boldly.

"Where did you think we are going, to the brothel...? Damn I wish."

Dietrich's face lightened up, "Down boy." he joked as the approached the end of the hall where a decorated wooden door is located. There were two guards in blue uniforms with yellow straps on each side holding muskets at the ready. Dietrich barely noticed them due to the darkness of the hall. Recognizing the two stallions approaching the soldiers saluted them and opened the split doors to a large bedroom. There was a room that was nicely lit by the fires, walls covered in tapestries and Caroland's blue and yellow banners. At the end of the room was large bed with red blankets surrounded by aristocratic ponies.

The two stallions walk in, noticed by the least fashionable of the group, he came over. Just a blue cape with white fox furs at the end.

"Dietrich, you returned." he says in barely above a whisper "That's good, I'm sure my son has told you of his state."

"He has, as well as Heinrich's election to be Jarl." Dietrich replied at the same soft tone with slight disgust towards the end. "Has Heinrich appointed you to remain Steward?"

"I don't know yet, I'll find out when he is crowned. Come! I'm sure your more interested in you father than my well-being." the Steward says motioning the two young stallions to the bed that lie a dying old Nordic pony.

Dietrich walks up to the bedside and sits on his flanks, taking in every detail of the dying pony. Only his head lying on silk red pillows was visible. His fur was russet brown like Dietrich's, his mane blended with aged white and bright blond, a beard in the same colors traced his jaw and around his mouth. His crest slowly rising and falling and his eyes closed.

"Hello, father." Dietrich said as if he would answer back. No answer came, just slow breathing. The dying Nordic then coughed loudly, breaking the peaceful silence. Dietrich feels a comforting hoof from Milos onto his shoulder as he tries to hold back his tears.

Suddenly the door to the bedroom bursts open and there stands a stallion the same height as Dietrich and Milos with hazel fur and a long, flowing, bright blond mane with no braids or in a ponytail; unlike the rest of the ponies in the room, male or female. His tail was trimmed short and left unkempt. Below his chin was a small pointed beard matching the same color as his mane and tail. He is wearing the blue wool solider uniform, many buttons aligned up from the chest and cuffs, the collar is made of thick white wool. Two yellow straps crossing from both of his shoulders to the yellow belt at his belly. On the uniform itself are many metals, including the Montelius royal family crest built into a large star shape piece of metal that took up most of the right breast. A blue cape, matching the color of the uniform, laid on his back with a yellow interior that is only visible to his sides, covering his cutie mark. On all four of his hooves were steel armor sabatons that shined in the light. On his front legs the sabatons met up with the buttoned yellow cuffs, covering his entire front section. On his head was a black tricorne hat that had gold a outlining along the edge of the folds instead of white like the common soldier, and white feathers at the top the surrounded the tips, and seemed to move to the slightest bit of wind. To his right side was a sheathed golden trimmed rapier sword, and next to that at flintlock pistol with golden trimmings in a leather holster.

His light sky blue eyes pierced across the room to Dietrich. "Dear brother, you're home!" he cried. "What in the name of Hjorvard are you wearing?" he asked changing his tone noticing the gray hooded cloak dotted with various animal furs.

"Heinrich." Dietrich plainly says.

"Honestly, no wonder why the world thinks of us a barbarians; wearing mutilated skins of animals is for peasants. I don't know why you try hiding your blood when you leave. The peasants should fear and admire you just by your presence!" says Heinrich in his aristocratic-like voice, moving closer towards the group.

"Our family has been elected by the Moot since the Two Years' Civil War, we have no blood to call us royalty. Something you forgot when you held the Moot before you were supposed to." Dietrich almost yells.

"You and your traditions, brother. If we are to thrive we must move forward and progress." Heinrich chuckles now face to face with Dietrich.

"History has shown when traditions that have worked been suddenly dropped, so to does society." Dietrich replies with his dark blue eyes locked in anger with the Heinrich's light blue. Heinrich is smiling as if he expect what Dietrich was to say.

He laughs putting an arm around Dietrich's shoulder, "Dear brother, come with me, we have much to discuss." he says dragging him away from the bed. Dietrich throws his arm him violently.

"I'm not a colt anymore, Heinrich; and you are not yet Jarl."

"You're right, I am not to be Jarl. I am to be King." Heinrich says.

Dietrich's eyes widened and lost his source of thought.

Milos steps in, "Only rulers with the blood of Hjorvard can deserve that title! In case you forgot our own history, the bloodline died along with King Carolus!"

Heinrich steps towards the bed again at Milos, "I know that, very well in fact; but for how long can we claim no Kings?"

"Until the return of Hjorvard!" answers Milos.

"Oh, please! How long will that be, exactly; a decade, a century, a millennium!?" Heinrich powerfully yells. "How do we know if Hjorvard will return at all!? How do we know if the bloodline is really dead!?" he turns to Dietrich, "Dietrich here, 'the most renowned historian in the land'; said it himself in one of his books: Hjorvard spent many nights with mares from the lands he conquered, sometimes several at once. With lack of... ahem... 'protection', and through the countless number generations since, all of us in this room could be related to Hjorvard, for all the knowledge that we posses."

The room was silent.

Dietrich breaks the silence, "Your disregard for our ways will be your downfall, brother."

"The ponies of this land side with me, regardless." Heinrich begins, "I have spent months rebuilding our once powerful military, redesigning the muskets and cannons, as well as whole new weapons to use upon our enemies. Up in the River Straalsund, away from those blasted Equestrians, I am building an entire fleet of ships to fight off the blockade. We will be free from Celestia's clutches, the Edict of Harmony burned, and I plan nothing but to bring our ponies back into the shine of glory we once were; and THIS how you treat your King!?"

"Sounds more like your planning an invasion. Where is this funding coming from? The 'peasants'? To fund a war we cannot afford? Outside Hjalmar's walls our people suffer starvation and poverty!" Dietrich raising his voice.

"To be ruler, you must look past the petty needs of the subjects." Heinrich fires back in his normal aristocratic voice, "The subjects are like rats, give them aid and they will only come back for more. To be ruler you cannot be ponytarian, you must look up above their heads to the future, and what I see is glorious. I see our legacy living once more and our enemies kneeling for mercy, and that is the vision of a true King."

"You are wrong, Heinrich. History has shown your faults countless times before, all end in the same outcome regardless of the time. Continue down your path of tyranny and only misery awaits you. End it now before the power is given to you!" Dietrich says, giving his final word to the argument.

After a short silence Heinrich speaks, "Leave me. I wish to see my father in private."

The aristocratic ponies looked at each other in confusion. Dietrich and Milos continued to stare at the older sibling.

"NOW!" Heinrich yells.

With that the aristocratic ponies left in confusion to their sudden retreat, followed by the Steward. Milos walked by Heinrich giving him a disgusted eye and up to Dietrich was was waiting for him by the doorway and left together and shut the door behind them, leaving Heinrich alone with his father.

After a couple seconds of Heinrich staring at the bed in silence thinking of the past argument, a smile grew on his face. He walked over to the bed and took off his fancied tricorne, placing it on the bottom corner of the bed, revealing his chipped right ear. He reached into his satchel attached to the yellow belt and pulled out a small black vial with a tiny cork on the top. The label on the bottle had a pony skull and crossbones printed on it.

"Hello father, just a little something to make you feel better. Traditional Nordic medicine, so it probably doesn't taste too good." he says in a friendly tone.

He pops off the tiny cork and places the opening to the small bottle to his father's mouth. Black liquid slips into his mouth and he swallows thinking it is medicine.

"This will help take the pain away. Sleep well my Lord.", and with that Heinrich places his feathered hat back on his head and starts for the door with a sinister smile and eyes imprinted on his face. He came to the door and opened it, greeted by the two guards.

"Is... is it done, my King?" one asks.

Heinrich gave no answer, just maintaining his sinister smile and started down the hall with his head held high leaving the guards to close the door he left open. He chuckles to himself quietly walking down the hallway.

--

On the other side of the castle only a few minutes after Heinrich intrusion, Dietrich makes their way to one of the two towers on the ocean's side of the fortress. The castle has five towers, two on each side that houses bedrooms, lookouts, guard barracks and libraries, and one large one on the back which is apart of the throne room which is also converted into a ballroom and a feast hall for the occasions. Dietrich and Milos slowly walk down another dim lit corridor still talking about what has happened only a few minutes ago and plans for the future.

"I still have a horrid feeling about Heinrich." Dietrich repeated. "His entire life he has cared for only himself. I have never seen him give a piece of silver to a beggar in Hjalmar's streets, and the only time he has ever left this city was for military expeditions and purposes, never to a Nordic village and see how the 'peasants' live." Dietrich preached and quoting his brother.

"Are you saying you will be a better ruler of the Caroleans?" asked Milos.

"My wish is to not gain power, Milos. I just wish for what is best for our ponies. I can care less for the throne. The citizens of this land look to me as their friend, an ally; not as their Prince. Which is how I prefer, history has shown that leaders can be respected more positively through informality." answered Dietrich almost fiercely.

"And that's why Nordics, Carolean or Druid regardless, admires you. But for now, get some rest." Milos says as the two male ponies stop at a wooden door. "I need you rested if we are to have some good venison tomorrow."

"You're right, my friend. I will see you in the morning." and with that the two bump their hooves together and Milos turns away.

As Dietrich opens the door, Milos turns around to speak once more, "Dietrich! After the hunt we must head to the brothel."

Dietrich shrugs, "We'll see. Although, it's not like a potential tyrant is claiming the throne to the country soon and make everyone's lives miserable. The last time we went, I had that courtesan stalk me for a month."

Milos laughed, "You know what the ladies want, my friend! And plus, you owe me after that whole quarrel with Mia."

"Don't say that... she-devil's name! She nearly broke our friendship for her own amusement!" Dietrich cried.

"Exactly! You owe me, and I need some flank! And just cause I saw you blush by the...ahem... M-word, you probably need some more than I do. You still need to get over her..."

"Fine..." Dietrich sighed in defeat. "Those courtesans do know what they are doing, anyways. As long as I get the prettier one this time!" Dietrich demanded raising a hoof.

Milos turned away again pleased he got his friend to submit to his request, "Yeah, yeah..."

Dietrich chuckled quietly to himself going into the room he tried entering before and shut the door.

He enters a circular room that is two stores high with a dome-like wooden ceiling. To the left was a large desk with quills, parchments, and stacks of tomes scattered the desk. To the left, a bed with red blankets. The walls were surrounded by bookcases and several portraits of landscapes and naval ships fighting at navel warfare. On the far end was a large opening in the stone wall that leads to a balcony looming over the outer walls of the fortress that lie right on the edge of the steep cliff to the ancient decaying walls below, and then into the Old City. The balcony itself looks over the city of Hjalmar and its harbors, then to the calm ocean where the moonlight and the northern lights reflect off.

Dietrich moves to his left and takes off his gray pelt covered cloak and hangs it on a rack, along with other outfits, including a blue and yellow strapped military uniform seen multiple times this night. His russet brown fur is the only thing covering his surprisingly muscular body.

In the center of the room was a target-like circle customarily made to fit into the stone floor marking the center of the circular room. Dietrich trots over to the stone marking and stands on it bracing himself for something. He closed his eyes, and muscles tense.

The voice of Dietrich narrates once again, "Now, remember when I said all Nordics have a limited ability for magic, and all Nordics have their own magic that only we can cast that is unique to only us? I also said I would tell what my magic ability was, but instead, I think it's best if I show you."

Dietrich softens up and opens his eyes. "June 16, 849 A.C, 9:34 AM, on the shores of Ingolstadt, 13.5 kilometers north of Duufladt." he says as if he as talking to someone.

Suddenly the room magically transforms. The bookcases, door and balcony are no longer there, instead they turn into gray skies and grassy green and rocky hills. Dietrich finds himself outside once more in landscape that looks like Drudia once more. The skies were cloudy and rain was falling, although the water droplets did not land on Dietrich and went straight through him as if he was a ghost. When the room was fully transformed to the outside rainy world Dietrich took in the details. He was standing on a grassy hill looking to the the gorgeous view knowing exactly where he was. He smiled in pride.

Voices were shouting behind him and the smell of smoke was vibrant. He turned around and in front of him at the bottom of the hill were entire formations of military regiments. On the left, wearing green uniforms with white straps over their soldiers connected to white belts, with tricorne hats on their heads and muskets at the ready. Flying high above the formatted soldiers flew a green flag that had a white cross going to the middle of each of the flag's edges flapping in the wind.

To the right was the same thing except with the blue and yellow stripped soldiers with muskets at the ready with their blue flag with a yellow X going to each corner.

"Excellent, I'm at the right place, the Battle of Duufladt." Dietrich mumbles to himself looking over the two opposing regiments.

With a fiery voice from the green uniformed side the front line kneed down and pointed their muskets to the blue and yellow regiment. The blues did the same. "Torras!" cried the leader of the green side and the firearms boomed in unison filling the front line of white smoke. On the blue side, soldiers in the front dropped dead at different locations, and those still aiming down their muskets fired. The two sides switched lines with the second line to repeat the process.

"Torras!" the two sides cried and load booms from both sides fired all at once making a mess of white smoke escape from the muzzles of the guns, making a line of white smoke in front of the regiments. Stallions on both sides continued to drop, some screamed in sheer agony on the red stained ground. The thunder of guns can be heard through the echoes.

Suddenly the stallion yelling commands on the green side pulled out his sword at pointed it at the blue side "Chrrogal!". In unison the green uniformed stallions charged towards the blue side with their bayonets. The front line of the blue side places the butts of the muskets to the ground and the bayonet facing out, bracing themselves.

"Pause!" cried Dietrich observing the battle below. "Save as recording six-fifty-seven."

The room the transforms back into the bedroom Dietrich was originally in. He trots over to his desk and pulls out a quill that was on his desk and writes on one of the parchments that had writing of dates and words on it:

August 9, 1032 A.C - The Battle of Duufladt, June 16, 849 A.C: After a long debate through almost 200 years, it was the Druids who fired the first shot of the Two Year's Civil War, not the Caroleans. Be sure to write this down in the next book to insure this mystery is solved - Recording 657.

"I knew I was right, now I have proof to Jarl McBride that it was them who fired those first shots. I defiantly have to show him this the next time I am in Bibracte. Hopefully he'll give me a drink for this discovery of his ponies starting the war... or not..." said Dietrich to himself after writing the notes down.

The voice of Dietrich narrates again, "Told you it was better if I shown you instead, or else you'd think I'm insane. I have the ability to look into the past. To witness history with my own eyes. Although witness is all I can do. These visions are more like recordings and I am not really there, as if I'm like a ghost unnoticed. Therefore I cannot alter history in anyway, only watch and observe. I can scream into somepony's ear as loud as I can, and they will still hear nothing. I can even walk through them or dance in front of them, and still no one knows I am there."

Dietrich yawned, "I need some fresh air" he walks over to the balcony outside the large hole that takes up almost a whole side of the circular room.

"Although, I currently can only look into the past at a minimum of 100 years, this is how near the present I can see. However, I think it is also to insure other ponies's privacy. A fair deal of you ask me. When I first discovered my gift I looked back about 20,000 years ago when ponies where still, for the most part, of the same ancestor and there was no intelligence level high enough to create civilization yet. As I practiced through the years my time frame to look back grew closer and closer to the modern day. I studied rigorously the life Hjorvard and his future dynasty, as well as the birth of Equestria, the rise and fall of King Carolus, and Discord. And my personal favorite, the Thirty Years' Civil War, also known as the Great Equestrian Civil War. I have written many books on these topics and are widely popular through both nations of the Nordic Isles."

Dietrich stops at a thermometer just outside of the door, hung on the walls looking out to the view. It read '59 Degrees Fahrenheit'. Rather warm for a Caroland night, even in the non-snowy season.

Dietrich narrates, "The beautiful thing about history is that it never seems to end, and to find the answers that we long to answer takes thousands of years of trial and error."

Dietrich heads for the stone railing at the end of the balcony, staring off to the beautiful ocean. Chilly winds pick up that cause Dietrich goldenrod mane to flow. His small braid against his face with the two red and green beads flow along with his young hair moves with the wind as well. He puts his front hooves on the railing and takes a deep breath enjoying the wind against his russet face. His eyes were closed and a smile bloomed, and his braid bouncing off his cheek with the wind. Dietrich was at peace.

"Tonight is the last night my life will stay the same." Dietrich narrates one last time. "For tomorrow, history will repeat once again, and once again pony-kind will have to trial and error to find our answers we all long to answer. For tomorrow, my life will be forever changed. For tomorrow... the world will be forever changed..."

“This is my story...”

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Author's Note: Hello everyone! This is my first piece of fanfiction in a long, long time. Not since my pre-teen days on Balto Source. This is also my first ever appearance into the MLP: FiM world. Before I just enjoyed the show and read fanfics in the shadows. It took me a while to join the Brony Army, but I finally enlisted! Please give constructive criticism, I'd gladly appreciate it and use it for the next coming chapters.

I actually had the idea for this story months ago, but I had to postpone everything when I found out the Crystal Empire in the show's third season was located right where I planned to have the Nordic Ponies exiled in the arctic north. So I just decided to postpone until after the premiere to start writing so I can get the Nordic history to blend perfectly with the current plot and move them to an island instead.

For those thinking Skyrim played a role in this: yes and no. Jarls in the story, that are used in Skyrim, are actually real positions in medieval Sweden, so it seemed fitting regardless.

In case you didn't catch it, the story has a setting mixed with a 17th and 18th century feel to the story with my descriptions of clothing and primitive firearms. I had this idea because in MLP the show there are still carriages and lack of modern technology like phones, automobiles, and TVs and a post-Middle Ages feel to the atmosphere (Although there was some modern-tech like alarms, salons, and others, but I'll explain how that is to be later). And with the treatment of Princess Celestia and other royalty made me feel like the show is set during the Age of Absolutism (1500-1750 approximately). So I combined my knowledge of this time period and made the Great Equestrian Civil War that kicked the Nordics out an allegorical version the Thirty Years' War (1618-1648) which you will get details in later chapters, and the current time period around 1730-1770-ish.

Thank you BurntMyWater for proofreading this!

--

Below I have some definitions in the story that have historical significance, hopefully to erase any confusion I may have caused and to disclaim these ideas to erase ideas of plagiarism from others, there won't be nearly this amount in later chapters.

Caroland - A fictional nation based off of Norse and other Scandinavian culture named after the Caroleans (see below) in the story, and is an allegorical version of the Swedish Empire.

Caroleans - In real life, they were Swedish military force under King Charles XII. Their tactics were strictly offensive and were the backbone to the Swedish Empire. In this story they are name of the inhabitants of the northern nation of Caroland where Dietrich originates.

Druidia - A fictional nation based off of Druid, Celtic, and Pict culture that is named after the Druids (see below) in the story. It is allegorical version of Ireland and Scotland's scenery with an 18th century society.

Druids - In real life, the earliest-most form of the Celtics in Europe in present day Britain, Ireland, and France. Only through what Greek, Roman, and other writers and artists have depicted of them is all we really know, and through archaeological evidence as well. In this story they are the inhabitants of the southern nation of Druidia.

King Carolus - "Carolus Rex" was the nickname to King Charles XII of Sweden and is his own name translated into Latin due to his imperialistic transformation of Sweden. His reign lasted from 1682-1718. In the story, both Nordic and Swedish Kings have had similar lives: both had military excellence, both praised and admired by their people, both the last true Kings, both died from a shot in the dark from an unknown killer, and both have had their nation's suffer from their deaths.

Hjorvard - According to Norse mythology, Hjorvard is one of the twelve sons of a feared berserker named Arngrim who kills Hjalmar in a dual. In this story he is depicted as the Nordic's Messiah-like figure. He is has the appearance and culture origins of the Ancient Norse Viking's Thor (not the Avenger's), the wisdom of Ancient China's Sun Tzu, and the legacy and following like Jesus Christ, Mohammad, and/or Buddha.

Hjalmar - In this story, it is the capital city of Caroland and named after Hjorvard. In Norse mythology Hjalmar was a man who fell in love with a woman named Ingeborg. The love story ends in a tragedy where Hjalmar is killed by Arngrim in a dual leaving Ingeborg heartbroken.

Bibracte - One of the Celtic's largest settlements located in Gaul (modern day France) before it was finally left to be abandoned after Julius Caesar's conquest of the land. In the story it is the capital of Druidia.

Ingolstadt – A city in southern Germany, and the main setting to Mary Shelly's Frankenstein (fun fact). In this story it is a county in Druidia mentioned during Dietrich's blast to the past at the Battle of Duufladt, which this is literally a name I made up on the spot.

*** The Nordic language is NOT a real language, those words are literally words I made up that sound like, or is relevantly sounding to a Scandinavian or a Gaelic language. However, some words are actually taken from those, or other languages but are most likely not used in the same sense.

--

Music is a great inspiration; this link is a homemade soundtrack that helped me with many scenes through this whole story, including the opening scene: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NjzLmA3ryGk

Hope you enjoyed this so far! Stay tuned for Dietrich's journey and to witness history change in the world of Friendship is Magic...