• Published 13th Dec 2012
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The Reign of the moon - Fluttering_Ashes



When Celestia's rage breaks her younger sister is forced to use the elements of harmony, locking her within the sun.

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year 1000 part 2

Lyra weaved her way through the scrambling crowd of ponies with an unconscious Gossamer on her back, the poor flutter pony had fainted during the excitement in town hall. Ponies everywhere were in a panic; many running to and fro, from house to house to grab their friends and belongings, planning to flee under the black sun. Lyra passed a brown stallion as she made her way to the library. Heading upstairs she deposited Gossamer on the bed before she returned to the books downstairs, only to find 5 ponies waiting for her.

Vinyl started on her the moment she came down the stairs. “Out with it! How did you know all that stuff about Solar flare! And how come you were panicking before she even showed up! Huh? Are you a spy?” Vinyl Scratch jabbed her hoof against Lyra’s chest once before she was tugged backwards by the confectioner, Bon Bon(at least she thought it was Bon Bon, it could be one of her sisters).

“Calm down. If she was a spy she wouldn’t have been freaking out like that. “ Bon Bon muttered in her calm, honey coated voice. She turned her gaze to Lyra.

“But you do know what’s going on…don’t you Lyra?”Lyra let out a sigh and explained to them what she had found out. Now that it had actually happened it didn’t seem quite as foalish to tell them she had read the prediction in a collection of old pony’s tales. What was a little bit more embarrassing though was admitting that she had no idea what, or where they were.

“The Elements of Harmony, a reference guide” Said a voice. Lyra blinked, her eyes turning to the purple pony, Screwball, who was currently floating, upside down, in front of a book left on the pedestal, almost waiting for her to find it.

“Where did you find that!” Lyra gasped, rushing to the earth pony’s side. Screwball simply shrugged and pointed to the pedestal.

“It was right here” She said. Lyra looked and sighed. She’d worry about how she could overlook it later.

“The Elements of Harmony” Lyra read, flipping the book open.

“There are six Elements of Harmony, but only five are known; The Elements of Honesty, Loyalty, Generosity, Laughter, and Kindness. The sixth is a complete mystery. The last known location of the six elements was in the Palace of the Royal Pony Sisters. The palace resides in what is now the…” She paused
“In where! In where!” Screwball squealed “I can’t take the suspense!”

“Unbelievable! Someone ripped off the rest of the page!”

“Solar Flare must’ve been here before we were!” Vinyl muttered.

Ditzy doo, who had been reading over Lyra’s shoulder, gently tapped her and pointed near the bottom of the page. Near where the rip started there was an untidy scrawl that read “Cover”. The vandals had written in a library book!? Lyra felt faint and short of breath.


“Woah. Easy. Breath girl.” Bon Bon muttered, holding Lyra up as her legs began to wobble.

“You can over react to this later. We have a princess to save”

Bon Bon was right of course. She shook herself a bit and quietly flipped the book to the back cover. Written there, in the same untidy scrawl, were the following words:
‘Danger lies before you, but the path is not clear.
The harmony you seek is far from near.
In the hallowed halls of learned mares the answer lies,
But so too does a fire that once burned in the skies.
Fear not of what may come in the end
For whatever happens after, you’ll always be with your friends.
Six challenges are yours to face
Do them quick, before the moon’s heart breaks.’

“What does it mean?” The gray Pegasus half whispered, after Lyra had read them the note.

“Hall of Learned mares….Learned mares..” Lyra mutters under her breath, pacing back and forth.

“So the Elements are somewhere right here?” Bon bon asked quizzically, to which Screwball rushed out and returned seconds later with a shovel, a pickaxe and a manic grin.

“No” Lyra muttered softly, her pacing continuing as she tried to work out the poem “No it said it was far from near, I doubt it’d say that if it were right under our hooves”

Vinyl scratch rolled her eyes however “What are you talkin’ about! It could just be something to throw us off the trail! How do we know Queen Scorch mark didn’t just leave that there to send us off in a whole different direction! “As much as Lyra wanted to argue, and indeed she had opened her mouth to offer a rebuttal, she really couldn’t find any flaw with what the DJ had said. They had no idea what Solar Flare was planning, she could be lurking in the shadows, watching, waiting for them to slip up, waiting for the right moment to turn them against each other. Lyra let out a sigh of frustration.

“I wish Princess Luna was here…she’d know what to do…” Luna….for some reason that name caught something in her mind. Luna….Luna….L.U.N.A!

“L.U.N.A! Hall of Learned mares! L.U.N.A! That’s it! The elements are at L.U.N.A!” Lyra jumped to her hooves, the other five simply staring at her as she rushed out the door. The other five looked at one another, exchanged shrugs, and galloped after her. Unbeknownst to them, a brown unicorn watched their disappearance, he smiled softly.

“Ah ponies, so eager to follow the trail of bread crumbs left out for them” He mutters as he steps into an alley way between the Quill and Sofa Emporium and the Lady Spot’s Ink pots.

“I almost forgot how good this feels” He mumbles before disappearing with a soft click.
~~~

Often Luna wondered what would life had been like if Celestia had not stepped between her and Sombra on that faithful day. How would life had turned out for her had the crystal king’s horn been pointed in her sister’s direction, and she, Luna, having to pay for her sister’s safety with her sanity. Would she be doing what her sister was now, so many miles below? Would she threaten to burn the world in holy fire…? No…no she didn’t think so. Not really….if she was really true with herself she thinks whatever this parasite was that was latched onto her sister, it would go for the most petty of feelings inside her. And truly she had been more than a little jealous of her sister time and again.

There was some truth in what ponies said…Celestia did belong in the limelight, and she in the shadow. But oh, how the understudy wishes to be the star of the show sometimes. Would it be such a bad thing for the lead to trip, sprain something, and give her time to shine? If Luna was true with herself, she’d say that the parasite within her sister’s heart of hearts would have made her jealousy far worse than her sister’s paranoia. She’d want ponies to appreciate her work….maybe even for the rest of their lives as their poor little bodies grew cold under a sky of diamonds.

Yes, Luna thought, but which would be better? A swift death under a paranoid tyrant? Or a slow and painful one beneath the eye of an egotist?

~~~

The girls had been surprised when Screwball announced she knew how to hot wire a storm powered car, but their surprise dimmed slightly when she simply kicked the cloud out of its spot in the engine, set the car in neutral and tied herself to it. One large bag of sugar later and their awe was renewed; Screwballs beanie propelled them up the northern most road towards Mount Canter, and L.U.N.A at lightning speeds. Vinyl half way through their trip decided to climb up onto the roof and holler at the top of her lungs.

“Woohoo! Go Screwy go!”Lyra sighed, rubbing the bridge of her nose.

“Is she normally like this?” she finally asks, a little surprised to find herself talking to Octavia. The cellist shrugged a bit.

“She can be a bit….wild sometimes but she does have her quiet and subtle moments…though admittedly they are few and far between…”

“Aww dude!” They heard from outside “Pick up speed! Come on really hit that hi-ack!” Vinyl began to cough and hack as a bug flew right down her wind pipe.

“You two seem really close…are you….?” Lyra began to ask, pleased to see Octavia’s face turning a shade of pink.

“Oh no no no dear, nothing of that sort…we’re just friends.” Lyra smirked a bit at Octavia’s quick brush off, about to pounce on the topic, before a loud pop hit their ears and their car skidded. A panting Screwball pulled over to the side of the road. The other girls got out of the car, Vinyl climbing off the roof…their car had gotten a flat. The girls all groaned. Vinyl however shushed them.

“Do you girls hear that?” She mumbles, her ears pricked. It took a while for the others to hear what Vinyl was talking about…music. More specifically rock music, coming from further up the road. It paused, faltering before it started up again, then faltered again, a longer pause. The girls began to head north, further up the tree lined road, coming into a clearing in a small bend, where a stage had been set up.

Three ponies were on stage, one behind a set of drums, one with a string instrument in his hooves, and one at a microphone, all with dull gray coats and bright neon manes of different colors. The lead singer, growled under her breath. “How do you expect us to be ready for the concert if you can’t even get this one song right! Come on! Again from the top!” They started again, the drummer looking a fair bit annoyed as he began the song.

The singer’s voice shifted into a more guttural and robotic tone as she belted into the microphone “I am ironmare”
Just as the bassist was about to start in with the melody the ponies noticed they had company, the song stopped abruptly, the vocalist glanced over the crowd, her eyes widening slightly. In a flash she shot down from the stage, sending Ditzy flying as she ran up to greet Vinyl. “Ohmigosh Ohmigosh!” Squeaked the mare. “You’re DJ-pon3!” Before Vinyl could answer she grabbed her hoof and began shaking it vigorously, reminding Lyra a little bit of her first meeting with Bon Bon.

“I’m you’re biggest fan! You have no idea how awesome it is to meet you! I’ve been to like, every one of your concerts!”

Every little word the mare said was making Vinyl swell up like a peacock.

“I-it be totally cool if you could play with us! We have a concert tonight!”

Vinyl deflated slightly, she glanced back at the group, Screwball busy trying to free Ditzy from the log her head had become wedged in. “Well…”Vinyl muttered, rubbing the back of her head

“I kinda got a thing…and you already got a full band anyway…”

“Oh that’s no big deal!” The mare said earnestly, taking a tiny step closer, getting into that awkward zone of closeness.


“You can just hang with us and catch up with them later! We can even give you Half Step’s spot!”

Half step, the bassist shouted at this “Hey!”

“Beat it Half!” Screamed the mare, not taking her eyes off Vinyl.

Vinyl’s whole attitude shifted in an instant. “You have some nerve kid.” She said softly, turning on her hoof and trotting away from her.

“Wait!” Cried the singer, but Vinyl didn’t look back, she helped Screwball retrieve Ditzy, and walked with the group, northward. As soon as they were far enough away all three faces split into identical grins, and disappeared with a click.

“You know” Lyra said softly “That was really cool…what you did back there”

Vinyl shrugged “I wouldn’t ditch you guys, not on something this important….besides…did you SEE her? She was nuts! Throwing her friend under the cart like that!” The five continued to walk in silence deeper and deeper into the shadow of Mount Canter, the black sun still right where it had been for the past few hours.

After a few moments of trotting in silence a new sound reached the group’s ears, crying. Another turning point, another bend in the road and another pony musician. He was a young stallion, an earth pony by the look of him, butter colored fur, chestnut mane, clutching a burnt chunk of wood in his hooves. The group approached, but he didn’t seem to notice. Lyra hoped they could get passed without any sort of distractions, but Octavia had to pause, looking down at the pile in his hooves.

“Dear…if you don’t mind me prying…what..was that?” She asks, nodding down at wood. He didn’t answer for the longest time but when he did, It was clear he was trying very hard to hold himself together.

“I…..it was my mandolin he….daddy made it for me when I was just a little thing….then…some crazy witch…all gold, just shot it! It saved my life but…” He broke down, Octavia gently patting his shoulder, the other five exchanging looks. Solar flare had been there…this stallion was lucky to be alive at all.

“I’m so sorry” Whispers Octavia. She stole herself to do something, hesitating for a moment before she took her cello off her back and slowly offered it to him.

“I know it’s not exactly the same….” She mumbles, apologetically

“But I’m afraid it’s the closest thing to a mandolin that I have right now…and…well it means a lot to me too…” Pain etched Octavia’s face as she struggled not to snatch the instrument back from the stallion as he slowly took it from her grasp

“I had to save up for months, doing a whole bunch of chores to buy that…you have no idea how much it means to me….” The stallion stared at her, eyes wide as saucers “You had better take care of it” He nodded slowly. She got to her hooves and walked away, vinyl gently wrapping a foreleg over her shoulders as they left the stallion…who had disappeared the moment their backs were turned.

They had begun to climb the mountain now, traveling up its slopes and criss crossing paths, every so often a new road coming in to merge with theirs. Every now and then somepony tried to make an attempt at idle conversation, but they were usually too tired to really keep it going very long.

The sounds of a waterfall met their ears, they all agreed it’d be the best place to stop for a break. They turned a corner, reaching a nice big pond with water flowing into it from a higher cliff. Lyra was the first to make her way over….but what she saw reflected in the waterfall wasn’t her own face. It was a human, tall and slender, with teal skin and a mind and white colored cropping of hair. The Human grinned at her, stuck its tongue out, wiggling its fingers at her.

“You’re obsessed!” It hissed grinning wickedly at her. She glanced around at the others, each of them were staring dumbfounded at the waterfall, whether they saw her human or if everypony saw something different she couldn’t say.

You’re obsessed just admit it! You have dreams about us at night, you think up fan theories! You go to conventions! You-“ the human her was interrupted by a shriek and a splash. Every pony in the group turned to look at Screwball, who was having a laughing fit in the little pool. “You’re right! My eyes are weird!” giggled the earth pony “And my hat IS goofy! That’s why I like it!”

“I…what?” was the collective response of their group.

“Oh girls don’t you see?” She walks up to the waterfall and gently splashes it at them, smiling “Sometimes you just gotta laugh at yourself!” They all blinked, staring at the waterfall. The first one to respond was Ditzy.

“My eyes are all googily and my voice goes all funny sometimes. I AM Derpy!” She began to laugh. One by one the group began to admit things to the body of water, laughing all the while; Bon Bon admitted she and her siblings actually tried to look alike, Octavia admitted she had absolutely no idea how to tie a bowtie on her own, Vinyl crowed that she sometimes gave herself a headache, and finally Lyra shouted “I’m obsessed with hairless, gangly, goofy lookin’ creatures!” to which they all began to laugh.

Their spirits lightened and their bodies rested they moved on, none noticing the waterfall itself chuckling quietly. They had made it halfway up the mountain, happily laughing and joking before they were forced to stop again, this time by a procession of animals, are marching single file, almost all of them covered in soot. That killed their mood quite a bit…but at least they knew they were heading in the right direction.

“Aww…” Ditzy mumbles as she watches the mice and raccoons walk down the slope “You guys’ll be hungry before you get to a new home…” She reached into her pack and retrieved three muffins, putting them one after the other on the ground in front of the group of rodents. She smiled kindly at them before rejoining the group heading in the other direction.


The school’s gates loomed before them, the eclipsed sun seemingly perched ontop of its tallest spire. Lyra gulped…now that she was here….she really didn’t know if she could stand up and do this…her legs got all rubbery again. A second before she could fall she once again found the same pony supporting her as she had in the library. “Woah now” Bon Bon whispered

“Hey, no matter what happens in there, I’m not going to leave you alone with her…okay?” Lyra smiled gratefully and nodded, the other girls silently nodded their agreement and together the six made their way inside.

The second they passed the gates they slammed shut, the high, cold voice carried across the court yard as the fire headed alicorn stepped from the entrance hall.

“Well, well, well” She crooned “It seems some of my subjects are well behaved! Are you here to bow before me like good little ponies?” She began to walk, sideways, her voice shifting an octave lower as she growled “or should I break out the dust pan right now?”

Lyra flinched slightly, but stood up straighter. “We’re here to stop you! You’re not going to burn anypony anymore!”
Solar flare yawned, pointedly “Oh spare me the mellow dramatic speeches, why don’t you put your bits where your mouth is? Go on, I’ll give you one free one!”

Lyra gulped, this was it….she tried…oh Luna how she tried, but the only thing she could see was that stupid new art statue, with the concrete balls, no signs of any elements anywhere!

“Oh all tapped out? What a shame…well my turn then!” Lyra barely had time to throw a shield up around the six, as the statue exploded, sending concrete fragments and chunks of molten rocks everywhere. Her barrier shattered. Solar flare began her approach, tutting quietly.

“You know, I’d expect a resistance to be a bit more….of a threat. What a pity”

Lyra groaned, her eyes cracking open. She saw her five friends…and indeed that’s what they were, her friends, laying there on the ground covered in dust and dirt. She felt her eyes widen, a fire sparking to life in her gut. She slowly rose to her hooves.

“No…I won’t let you hurt them”

Solar Flare smirked, her horn beginning to glow. The blast shot forward…only to be stopped by a bubble starting at Lyra’s hooves. “What?!”

“You see Solar flare, I learned something today. Your friends might not always be perfect” Slowly her friends started to get up around her, the rubble at their hooves starting to sparkle and glow
“They might not always be smart, or tactful, but they’re still your friends. And when friendship unites the five elements of harmony, they create the sixth element! The Element of Magic!” the five different glowing pieces of concrete turned into solid gem stones, each one becoming a necklace around her friend’s necks. A Tiara appeared on her head as the six ponies began to float in the air, their elements starting to glow brightly. Solar Flare’s eyes widened.

“No!” She cried, her horn zapping their force field as the energy built up. Lyra’s eyes opened, the six minds linked for the briefest of moments…she heard Vinyl and Screwy in the back of her mind, saying as one “Aww yeah! Rainbow death ray go!”
A rainbow arced high above their heads, snapping forward like a snake and wrapping itself in a twist of colors around the solar mare. Her scream echoed in the school’s court yard.


Luna, high above them, had not heard the scream, but she had felt the after effects…her orb began to move, her imprisonment on it broken. In a second she had walked into the court yard on a beam of moonlight, ready to face what may be.

“Princess!” Was the first word she heard, she opened her eyes to find a minty blur rushing to her side. She smiled and quietly bowed her head, lifting her wing to wrap her student in a hug.

“Congratulations Lyra, I knew you could do it!”

“You knew all along this would happen?” She asks, nodding her head at the slightly horseshoe shaped bobble on her big crowny thing. Luna simply shrugged in response.

“I had my hopes. I just told you to make friends, nothing more, and you far exceeded my expectations once again.” Lyra beams at the praise, puffing up just as Vinyl had done earlier.

But if you excuse me…there’s somepony else that needs my attention right now” Heads turned to the groaning figure, all white with a soft pink mane, a little smaller than she had been before. Luna silently marched over to the figure “Celestia” She said softly, the pony on the ground before her flinched, and looked away, not daring to look up at her.
Luna’s lip quivered, she heard Lyra gasp as she fell down next to her, wrapping her forelegs around her neck as the first wave of tears fell down her cheeks. Celestia seemed just as surprised as Lyra was. “I missed you so much big sister!”

Once again the group of six little ponies gasped. Celestia sniffled a bit, Luna regaining her composure a little. “We were meant to rule together sister, years without you have taught me that.”

How can you forgive me just like that?” Celestia squeaks, staring up at her…not-quite-so-little-anymore-sister.

Luna blinks at that, a small smile curling over her muzzle. She gently nuzzled her sister “Would you if it were me?”
“Aww I love a happy ending!” Called a voice as Discord waltzed into view, letting Octavia’s cello bounce its way over to her, it barked like a dog, wagging its bow like a tail before hopping onto her back, causing her to let out an “oof!”
Celestia’s mouth fell open, as she stared at him, her eyes slowly shifting over to Luna.

Luna, for the first time since Lyra knew her, looked a little sheepish “Oh yeah….I have a bit of explaining to do”

Author's Note:

And with many delays and such, I finally got it done...thank you all for sticking with me for so long and I'm sorry for keeping you waiting. On my next story I promise something much more original and much more frequent updates!