• Published 19th Nov 2012
  • 6,409 Views, 798 Comments

The Missionary - Radon18



Follow a man, surviving in equestria with nothing but his wits and his faith, oh and his own town.

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Chapter1: Humble Beginnings

“BEEPBEEPBEEPBEEPBEEPBEEPBEEPBEEPBEEP!”

Smack!

I rolled over in my sheets, not wanting to get up and face the day. The time was barely past six, but there were things to do, there were always things to do. With a groan, I twisted out of the sheets and planted my feet on the cold tile floor. With a yawn and a stretch, I got out of bed and walked over to the wardrobe. Opening the door, I pulled one of my clean shirts over my head, an oversized garment meant to be comfortable while I worked. After pulling on the rest of my clothes, I washed my face in the bucket of water I kept in the corner. Finally, I pulled my crucifix necklace from its case on my desk and slipped it on, tucking it beneath my loose shirt.

My morning rituals almost finished, I pushed the door to my room open and set off down the hallway. The inside of the church I now called home was chilly and I could see my breath condensing in a little puff of steam in front of me. Passing the empty Sunday School classrooms, I hung a right at the end of the hallway, past the small kitchen once used for community gatherings or break times for deacons and teachers. Finally reaching my destination, I climbed up the small ladder and took hold of the rope dangling there. I looked at my watch. It was 6:59. Getting ready had taken longer than usual this morning, but at least I wasn’t late. The second the hand ticked over to seven, I yanked on the rope.

“Donnnnng!”

“Donnnnng!”

“Donnnnng!”

“Donnnnng!”

“Donnnnng!”

“Donnnnng!”

“Donnnnng!”

The bell in the little bell tower rang out its only song, just like it had three times a day, every day, for the past two months. I wiped my hands on my pants and headed out into the chapel. I passed by the ever empty pews and out the front door. When I stepped into the chilly morning air, I stopped and took a look around. Around me the well-kept church grounds were beginning to turn to the colors of fall; reds and yellows and oranges littering the trees. The church itself was similarly well kept, as were the statues that guarded the front lawn, the stone scrubbed clean every few weeks by the only visitor - me.

Ever since it happened I’ve been trying to keep things together. I had moved into the church soon after; it just felt like the right thing to do. I have been using it as home, base of operations, and storage unit all in one - after all there are a lot of rooms that won’t ever see another human soul, so why not use them?

I headed out the wrought iron gate and walked down the street. I gazed into the homes and shops of the little California town, all of them empty and all of them lacking any spark of life in the almost unnaturally still morning. Their yards were all overgrown and the buildings were only barely beginning to show the signs of disuse. At first I had contemplated trying to care for the whole town, since being the only resident meant it was technically my town, but that idea had been quickly forgotten as I had nearly ran myself ragged trying to restore basic utilities to the church.

I stepped over the thick cable that ran down the sidewalk next to me. The cable snaked up the hill to a lone wind turbine I had managed to set up. The cable branched at several points; one branch lead to a school parking lot that was covered by solar cells, the other climbed up a hill and away from downtown. That turbine, in conjunction with the solar cells, supplied power to the church, the gas station, and the grocery store - the only three buildings I had deemed vital at the time. Unfortunately those three had maxed out my grid and it couldn’t support anything else. I had plans for another one, if I could find the parts. When I finally found time for it, I would fix up the hospital and rewire the extra to the grid I already had up.

Finally at the end of the street, I came to the park, or what was left of it. The event, whatever it had been, had cut right through the center. I walked to the edge of the little cliff and looked down, the forest below seeming to stretch out endlessly. In the far distance, a tiny white speck on the side of a mountain looked like a collection of spires, suggesting the existence of intelligent life wherever I and the town had been relocated to.

Having been transplanted into the middle of a monster-filled alien forest came with the kind of problems you might expect, problems that made themselves known frequently. But this was my town and all the freakish hell spawn in whatever world this was couldn’t force me out. My mind drifted to the first time I had encountered one of the foul beasts that inhabited the forest and now occasionally prowled my streets.

=====================================================================

I turned another corner, cruising slowly through the streets in my neighbor’s pickup. I had my own car, but the tiny Honda didn’t have the cargo space I needed for this search. I had spent the entire day searching, looking for survivors of the cataclysm that had occurred two days ago, plus any supplies or useful materials I might find. I was going barely fifteen miles an hour down a quiet residential street when a massive shadow leapt into the middle of the road. I slammed my foot down on the brake and the truck jerked to a stop. I couldn’t really comprehend what I was seeing. The massive creature was some kind of unholy chimera, a mixture of a lion and what looked like a bat and a scorpion.

I quickly threw the truck into reverse and started to carefully, slowly back up away from the monster. It was then that the hell spawn noticed me. I guess it thought the truck was some kind of tasty prey animal because it lunged at me, tearing down the road, leaving fist sized chunks of pavement in its wake as its claws shredded the ground. I panicked; I didn’t know what to do or how to handle a demon - Sunday School hadn’t exactly covered how to kill monsters. I did the only thing I could think of and threw the truck into drive and slammed my foot down on the accelerator. The engine growled deeply, almost sounding like a roar, and that sound is what I think allowed me to kill the monster.

At hearing the loud roar of the truck's engine and seeing the speed at which it charged, the monster must have decided to stop and try to get a better grip on its opponent. I guess it expected me to stop and enter a standoff, but to the creature’s surprise I continued to accelerate. 30-40-50-55 - The numbers on the speedometer quickly climbed past sixty. Thank God this truck had a nice, big engine. I don’t think the demon expected the truck to slam into it at over sixty miles an hour, nor did it expect it to be made of hard, unyielding steel rather than soft flesh.

After freeing myself of the safety belt and airbags, it was a simple matter to climb out of the busted truck. I retrieved a pistol from the glove compartment and turned toward the beast. Its scorpion tail flailed wildly, occasionally putting dime sized holes in the crumpled body of the pickup. I raised the pistol in my hand and pointed it at the demon’s face. It took nearly two whole 9mm clips, but I managed to finally finish it off.
I took a deep breath and sat down on a nearby car’s hood. My nerves were rattled, my hands sweated and shook and my breathing was labored. That had been the first time I had ever had to kill anything in self-defence. It was also the first moment the truth really sank in. I was not on earth any more, my family was gone, everyone was gone. I was all alone; wherever I was, it was only me.

=====================================================================

I didn’t know what it was at the time, and still don’t, but the creatures that I would come to call chimeras occasionally ventured into my streets. It had been no easy feat to set up defenses for the entire town. A fence made of razor wire from the prison, lots of boards from the lumberyard and various other deadly and painful traps awaited unwary or stupid monsters. But that isn’t what I had to do today; today I needed to tend to my fields. I had planted seeds I had gathered from the local hardware store, grocery, and Wal-Mart in a nice plot of land near the town square, hoping to establish a good vegetable garden.

I turned and walked on further past the park, finally reaching the square turned garden. My gardening tools were in a nearby building that once had been a Starbucks. I had only just begun to tend to the sprouting harvest when I heard something. I stopped and looked around, straining to hear whatever had caught my attention.... There! It was someone speaking. I didn’t recognize the language but whoever it was, I was happy to finally get visitors. I took off in the direction of the sound, looked down streets, scanned alleys, and searched stores, but couldn’t find anybody. I don’t know if they were hiding or already came and went, but after half an hour of searching I sadly gave up and went back to trying to prepare my field to last the winter.

I checked my watch: 11:34 A.M. I put away my tools and made my way back to the church, again taking in the sights as I walked a different path back, eventually making a big circle. On this road was Main Street, the prison and the courthouse, all of them now still as death. The massive stone edifices often gave me the creeps. I shook the uneasy feelings out of my head and hurried on, turning my mind back to my fields. Maybe I could build a greenhouse to keep the frost off? After arriving home, I quickly shed my muddy boots by the door and hurried into the back of the church to that lone rope dangling down from the bell tower. I looked at my watch again - 11:59. I had cut it close this time. The moment the clock ticked over I yanked on the rope.

“Donnnnng!”

“Donnnnng!”

“Donnnnng!”

“Donnnnng!”

“Donnnnng!”

“Donnnnng!”

“Donnnnng!”

“Donnnnng!”

“Donnnnng!”

“Donnnnng!”

“Donnnnng!”

“Donnnnng!”

The bell in the little bell tower rang out its only song, just like it did three times a day, every day, for the past two months. I wiped my hand on my pants, headed around the corner into the little kitchen, pulled what little fresh food I had out and prepared a humble meal of tomatoes, carrots, some eggs, and various junk food. I tried to limit my consumption of the junk food and preserved things to conserve them for winter. The tomatoes had been my first successful crop I had grown for myself. The little garden across the street from the church still held the vines that were looking like I might get one last small crop of the red fruits before it was too cold for them.

I opened a can of soda from the fridge. Drinking supplies were something I had managed very carefully since the event happened. The first week I had drank mostly milk to keep as much of it as possible from going to waste. Then it was nothing but fruit juice. Now it was down to soda, which there was no shortage of. I was mostly saving the bottled water for last as it was totally pure and I didn’t need to worry about it turning.

After I was finished, I grabbed my study Bible from the counter where I usually left it. I had always neglected to read it before the event, but now I had all the time in the world and I normally spent at least an hour after lunch reading. I started at the logical place with Genesis and I had only gotten most of the way through that in these past few months. I sat in one of the pews in the front row and started reading. The chapel was relatively warm compared to the hallways so it was significantly more comfortable. There I sat for nearly an hour, the only sound the slow turning of pages a faint wind from outside and the chirping of the birds from the nearby forest.

Then something happened that nearly made me jump out of my skin. I heard the door to the church slowly creak open. The slow but unexpected noise sent a jolt of electricity up my spine and I leapt from my comfortable reading position. My heart hammered in my chest, and I felt like I was breathing through a straw. If there was some kind of Hell-spawn that finally found my sanctuary, I wouldn’t stand much of a chance; the deadly traps and such were mostly at the border, and I certainly didn’t have any trucks conveniently lying around. What I did have was a nice twelve gauge shotgun I stashed in the emergency extinguisher case, but I didn’t go for it right away, thinking maybe I had left the door ajar. It could have only been the wind and I would just end up acting paranoid. I took a calming breath and settled my rattled nerves. More than likely it wasn't anything to freak out over.

After what seemed like an eternity I finally walked over to the door and peeked out. There was absolutely nothing beyond it but the noontime sun and what had ended up being a pleasantly warm day. I shut the door, convincing myself it was just a gust of wind. I turned and made to put away my Bible and get back to work. I was halfway down the aisle when I noticed it; my eyes snapped to the shape next to the podium.

A short, armored, four legged creature stared back at me with massive, intelligent eyes.

==================================================================

The throne room in Canterlot castle was silent, the only sound the soft rustling of parchment and an occasional dainty sip at a cup of warm tea. The silence was suddenly interrupted by the sound of the massive doors groaning open, followed by the sound of a pony's hooves, the rhythmic canter muffled by the thick velvet carpet.

“You called for me Your Highness?” Spitfire, captain of the Wonderbolts stood at attention before Princess Celestia.

The alabaster immortal sipped at her tea for only a moment before setting it aside to address her subject. “Yes, Captain Spitfire, how was your deployment in Detrot?”

“It went well Your Highness. The garrison you sent is doing wonders - the population is calming down quickly.” The stunt flier turned military leader relaxed a little, sure the living goddess wouldn’t mind a little familiarity.

“That’s good news.” The princess smiled. “And how do the new Anti-Changeling countermeasures fare, good captain?”

“They’re working great Your Highness! The garrison has been using them on any suspicious ponies, just a single prick and 'Fwoosh!' Changelings are immediately exposed. Remind me to thank that student of yours one day!” Spitfire smiled and sat down, about to launch into an expansion on her field report when she was silenced by Celestia’s raised hoof.

Suddenly serious, Celestia flared her wings as she drew herself up off the throne. “Unfortunately, I must cut you a little short. There has been a situation brewing near Ponyville, and this investigation cannot be delayed any longer. I assume you’ve heard of Everfree City, yes?”

Spitfire looked confused for a moment before perking up and nodding. “Yes, the rumors have been going through the ranks, but I myself only heard of it recently.”

“Oh, and what are my little ponies saying about it?” The princess leaned forward a bit, curiosity piqued.

“The most common rumors are that it’s some kind of abandoned ghost town from a long time ago. Most think that the Everfree must have swallowed it up at some point and is only now spitting it back out. There are a lot of other rumors too, outlandish things like beings from another dimension invading, spirits, monsters, all sorts of crazy stuff.” Spitfire waved her hoof around dismissively.

Celestia nodded her head pensively before levitating a rolled up piece of parchment to Spitfire. “I’m not entirely sure which of those are true, but my student Twilight Sparkle has kept me up to date. There is indeed a strange town that has materialized in the middle of the Everfree. There is also definitely activity from the town. A single new structure was erected about a month ago, but no one has seen any unusual creatures, other than the forest’s usual denizens. There is obviously something intelligent living there.” Spitfire gasped and looked like she was about to speak, but Celestia held up a hoof to silence her again. “There is something else there as well. I don’t know what it is, but it is a source of dark energies unlike anything ever felt in Equestria. This is your mission: I need you to scout the town, search for this source of dark magic and whatever creatures may inhabit the place, and report your findings directly to me.”

Spitfire saluted smartly. “It will be done your Highness! You can count on the Wonderbolts!”

“Be cautious my little pony - I do not wish for any of you to come to harm. Just find out what lies there and return, nothing more. Do you understand?” Celestia fixed Spitfire with a stern gaze.

Spitfire grinned and nodded. “Don’t worry about us, Princess, we’ll be in and out before you even know we were gone. Besides, it’s just a recon mission, what could possibly go wrong?”