• Published 22nd Nov 2012
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The Spread of Darkness - The Grimm Reaper

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Chapter 1: Infection Through Thought

Twilight’s eyes were bloodshot as she examined her latest work. The crystal Spike had given her emanated with impatience. His soul wanted out and it wanted it soon. It hadn’t done it until recently, on that fateful day; when her life seemed to be on the brink of ending. She shuddered at the mere thought.

She went over the calculations one more time, determined not to rest until she’d succeeded. Everything seemed in check and she was ready to begin. The crystal was seated on a stone altar with ancient runes carved around it. The runes glowed with a dark purple lining, stretching out from the base of the altar. Around the altar was a dense glass tube, barring access to the crystal itself. Four lines stretched out North, East, South and West, ending in runic circles charted with numerous symbols around the hemispheres.

“Okay… thank you for coming, Cadence... According to my calculations… the spell requires one member… of each pony race to perform.” Twilight stumbled into one of the circles, her body wobbly and malnourished. Her speech was fading and it was becoming hard to hear her.

“Twilight, while I’m happy to help you out with this… I think you should recover your strength and get something to eat and some sleep. You’ve been working an entire week without food or rest, and… it’s showing, badly.” Cadence replied, sitting in the Northern circle adjacent to Twilight in the Southern circle.

“Yeah, Twi; you look like a gryphon’s eaten you from the inside-out and left the skin on the bones.” Rainbow Dash added within the Western circle. In the Eastern circle sat Applejack who had removed her Stetson and the red ties that kept her mane and tail wrapped up. Cadence had removed her regal attire as well as her diadem. Any immaterial objects that were inorganic would have ruined the spell.

“No… I can’t sleep without… him.” Twilight levitated a book over to her side and looked at the text. The others remained silent, having nothing else to say on the matter.

“Now… this magic is really old; from like… before Princesses Celestia and Luna. Instead of using… pony magic. The spell requires words spoken in… dragon tongue.” Twilight rubbed her eyes which began to bleed, turning the whites of her eyes red. She looked terrible. Her mane was ragged and her tail was no better. Her coat had darkened after she’d begun to tamper in a more permanent dark magic that had changed the colours of her irises from violet to maroon. The blood in her eyes blended magnificently with the irises, giving her an even more evil appearance.

Um… not that Ah don’t mind doin’ this sugar cube, but if this is old dragon magic, then why are us ponies needed? Wouldn’t four dragons be better suited for the job?” Applejack asked, scratching her head with her hoof. Twilight shook her head.

“No, the species difference is irrelevant. What this spell does… is it takes our mental images of Spike… plus the magic that we each bare. The book says both gryphons… and ponies were used to bring back their fallen comrades… in the off chance that a death occurred with one of… the four… whatever… I don’t know what they’re called.”

“Wait, there’s the possibility we could die from this?” Rainbow Dash asked.

Twilight shook her head. “No, not likely… there were never any recorded deaths when this spell was performed. This spell… will take our unique abilities. For example, an Earth Pony’s strength, a Unicorn’s magic, a Pegasus’ wings… and an Alicorn’s ability to utilize all three. These characteristics closest resemble a dragon’s.” she was searching for air in the room by the time she’d finished.

“And what’s this glass thing here for?” Cadence asked, knocking on the glass.

“That’s got two purposes. It’ll prevent any draconic magic from scaping, as well as the regenerative liquid that I’m going to teleport into it.”

“Regenerative Liquid?” Applejack asked.

Twilight sighed and nodded.

“Yes…It’s something I concocted with Zecora. Some remedial… flowers unique to the book’s requirements. They’re easy to find in the Everfree… if you know where to look. Now lets’ get this spell started.” Twilight took a moment to catch her breath. With her magic, the aura around her horn darkened, she lifted the book and began to recite the words of the ancient draconic language.

Mrith nomeno raelgil, yth tuor wer sepa irsa ekess clax adon vur dronilnr ekess udoka hesi thurirl vur kiabil. Vrrar thurirli tepoha dryica zahae ekess tluog asta vers ekess wer sepa di wer darastrix.” as Twilight began the chant, the crystal lit up like a light source and began to pulsate.

Wer darastrix ui hesi thurirl, sia itov. Petranas, letoclo udoka. Majak jacion spical ekess udoka.” as Twilight finished the incantation, the crystal detatched into three small pieces. They rose from the altar and spun around each other in a ring. The four circles the ponies resided in lit up, each taking their own colours. North grew white, East grew red, South grew blue and West grew yellow. They pulsated like the crystal had before and began to force different energies into the altar. Each rune grew a rainbow of colours and formed a barrier that stopped short of the glass cylinder. The crystals stopped moving and took their positions that seemed random in nature. The barrier retreated in on itself, and began to take on the form of a dragon. The familiar outline brought a tear to Twilight’s eye.

Spike chuckled. “Well, it’s supposed to create a new body around it… but there’s a method needed to begin the process, which I don’t know about. That method was lost to even my kind long ago.” Twilight felt the crystal grow heavy in her hoof.

“Why are you telling me this?” there was a moment’s hesitation in him as he looked her in the eyes. It was then Twilight noticed he’d somehow gone blind in one eye. She remained silent as he was about to reveal all to her.

“I…I’m dying, Twi.”Spike shifted uncomfortably. Twilight hadn’t moved an inch afterward. “It’s… the dark magic, Twi. I did something with it that caused my body to reject it. I’ve got about one week left in me before I kick the bucket. Like I said before, I was going to leave either way. I’d hoped you’d never have to know about this. It’s the reason why I tried to distance myself from you all when I came back. I just wanted to… see you all again before I severed all ties to you

Twilight began to cry as the news reached her. She’d just found true love and time was taking it away from her.

The barrier began to take on a corporeal form. What looked like hellfire and ashes began to circulate around it and through the dense thick of the smoke that billowed from the flames, the skeletal structure of a dragon could be seen appearing as if it were rising to the surface of the ocean. With the bones in place, flesh began to morph into existence around them, followed quickly by thick skin, then scales.

The owner of the body cried out in apparent agony as his body was forced together within a matter of seconds. The newly renewed form of Spike seemed agitated. The three crystal shards were embedded on his forehead, chest and abdomen. They gave off a slight purple pulse before going to rest. Twilight barely managed to avoid leaving the circle. Her willpower to make sure everything went correctly held her in place. With her magic, she teleported the regenerative liquid directly into the tank. Spike squirmed for a few minutes, startled by the sudden increase in pressure.

Vdri, itov.” she said. Using the dragon’s language, she forced Spike into a state of sleep. The dragon ceased his struggle and was drawn toward the altar, where the energy was slowly pouring into his body.

“Okay, ten more minutes of this and we can all break away. Thanks again, girls.” she said, lying down in the circle.

“You really are amazing, Twilight. It’s this kind of stuff that makes me the proudest babysitter in the world.” Cadence began. But Twilight was already asleep. Now she could dream of a bright future with Spike, once the war with the Gryphons was over. But that wouldn’t be difficult, right?

Within the confines of Spike’s healing tank, he could feel strength and power coursing through him. It felt nice, like bubbles rising beneath one in a warm bath. The collective memories he had returned slowly, with the aid of his friends’ perspectives filling in the gaps. An overwhelming sense of pride struck Spike as he realised the love of his life had done something the dragons couldn’t figure out in thousands of years. And she’d only done it in a matter of months since his demise at the hands of the darkness. That was a harrowing memory. The bubbly feeling left as he thought about that incident. When he’d been turned to stone like Discord, but crumbled like the base of a cheesecake.

Wanting to take his mind off of the subject, Spike drew his subconscious attention to the minds of his friends. He began to wonder what Twilight was thinking or dreaming about. Using the connection with the altar as a medium for his intrusion into her mind, he saw her plans for the future. He smiled as he saw himself sitting across from Twilight at one of the fanciest restaurants in Canterlot, sharing a table outside the front. Afterward, the fantasy would shift to a private room in the Princesses’ castle, where the two of them just slept on the giant red heart-shaped bed, holding each other in a loving embrace. She then imagined the two of them falling asleep in the middle of a kiss, making it last the whole night.

Sadly, the dream turned to a nightmare as Twilight began to have doubts about the ongoing war. Her greatest fear was Spike’s second life coming to an end at the very creatures that sought it, led by the princess he’d disrespected. Twilight’s nightmare was Celestia having joined the gryphons in a ploy for revenge against the unexpected attack to her pride and face. The thought of betrayal from Twilight’s mentor burned deep within the mare, and it began to infect Spike.

The dragon awoke with a start. The thick almost gel-like liquid that covered his surface startled him, especially when he realised he could inhale it. It was a dark aqua colour, but the light from the runes made it easy enough to see through to the ponies. Twilight was fidgeting in her sleep. Spike dared not enter her mind in the state she was in now. He reached over to Rainbow Dash and entered her mind. It was fairly simple in nature, and a very predictable dream for her. She was in the Wonderbolts, finally. And all her friends were watching her from the crowd that had gathered to see her special Sonic Rainboom, Even Gilda was cheering her on in a happy-go-lucky sort of way, which was out of character for her. Scootaloo was hovering, able to remain in the air at least without moving her position.

Then she too began to grow a nightmare. The gryphons had returned and were in so many numbers, you couldn’t see a lick of sunlight within the tidal wave. The nightmare concluded with Rainbow Dash hurrying to Celestia to ask for aid. But she refused to give it.

Spike withdrew from Dash’s mind and waited a moment to calm down from the frightening scenes that ensued. As Spike cleared his thoughts, he thought he noticed the liquid he was in had turned a shade darker. Perhaps it was just his imagination?

He went into Applejack’s mind, figuring there was nothing the farm pony could fear from her applebucking. He was wrong. While she and her family were tending the fields, both gryphons and Timberwolves appeared from the sky and ground. They’d joined forces, all under the symbol of Celestia who had desired the gryphons over her own subjects. Spike drew away with a groan. Every nightmare involved Celestia somehow. Cadence! Surely Cadence couldn’t have a nightmare involving her own Aunt.

To Spike’s pleasure, he saw she was dreaming about her family. She was lying by the fire with Shining Armour and their beautiful baby filly. But their smiles seemed hollow, as though the family were keeping up appearances even amongst each other. Spike altered his view of the dream and noticed a mantelpiece above the fireplace with some images of Twilight, first as a foal, then a growing filly, and then as she was when she’d made her first friends. The last picture of her was recent. She looked worn down slightly, but that came with age. She was smiling weakly. Spike couldn’t stop looking at that particular picture, until he noticed one more. It wasn’t a picture of Twilight, but as he looked closer, it was an image of her grave.

Here Lies

Twilight Sparkle

D.O.B: 979 A.L

D.O.D: 1013 A.L

A Beloved Sister, Daughter And Wife

Defied Princess Celestia

Spike read the grave stone and covered his incorporeal mouth. There were two more stones, one was his, with roughly the same text, but between them was a smaller stone.

Here Lies

Dawn Sparkle

D.O.B: 1012 A.L

D.O.D: 1013 A.L

A Beloved Daughter, Niece And Cousin

Killed Along With Parents

That image tipped Spike over the edge. He snapped his eyes open, seeing the tank was now shrouded in black. He flung his body around, hitting the glass, but try as he might, he couldn’t break it. He could sense that the others had arisen from their nightmares. He heard hooves touch the glass, which reverberated through the liquid. Spike drew his attention toward the nearest light source. The altar omitted a faint glow as the last of the energy was unleashed. Spike threw his hand onto the altar’s top and a wave burst through the tank. The glass gave way to the condensed force and shattered, freeing the hyperactive and enraged dragon.

Twilight and the others were thrown back, sliding along the ground as they were slicked with black gel-like liquid. Twilight looked straight at Spike who was shrouded in a mist of blackness. The sounds were indescribable. She tried her best to look through the blackness, but it covered him like drapes underwater. It was for only an instant that she saw a pair of white glowing eyes shine through the blackness.

“Shit.” she whispered to herself.


Author's Note: Okay guys, I'm making a few little changes to Spike and also some personality tweaks to the others because, let's face it, war does that to people. Spike will no longer be so much as a badass, but ultimately insane. Instead of his dark magic resembling Sombra's, it'll remain true to ss2Sonic's design and resemble the picture shown. The transition between light and Dark Spike will be somewhat like the Ghost Rider's, including a new personality when changed.

Translations to the draconic text are as follows in reading order:

With this crystal, we desire the soul within to take form and bring to us our friend and companion. Four friends have gathered around to lend their power to the soul of the dragon.

The dragon is our friend, my love. Please, help us. Give him back to us.

Sleep, Love.

Now then, Spike's resurrection/rebirth (I felt I was clever with this) is exactly like Spike's resurrection from Angel Series 5

And the indescribable sound Spike makes will be the sounds the Rider makes in the newest movie.

That is all.