• Published 19th Jan 2012
  • 10,242 Views, 139 Comments

Ravenspire - Imperius



Twilight's read stories about an ancient library deep in the Everfree Forest and sets out to find it

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Retribution

"But that's cheating!" Weaver exclaimed. "You can't just take away her loyalty and then throw her wings at her, there's no way she'd be able to resist that! Where's the challenge? Where's the fun?"

"The fun is in winning, my dear Weaver. Where else would it be?" Discord said.

"But winning is only fun if there's a possibility of losing, outmaneuvering a powerful opponent is what's fun. If they never have a chance then what's the point?" the ancient raven ranted.

"You're just over thinking it, if it's fun then it's fun, simple as that. What do I care if it's unfair so long as I'm enjoying myself," Discord sighed.

Weaver seemed on the verge of tearing his feathers out. "But the challenge!"

"You really do need to relax, not everything needs to be so serious. You know what you need? You need to go out there and whip up a little chaos, that always makes me happy." Discord suggested.

Letting go of a clump of feathers on his head, Weaver began to mull over what the draconequus had said. His suggestion actually had quite a bit of merit to it, he should just go out and cause some chaos. But no, not just any chaos, what he needed was to cause some Chaos. A smirk crept across his face.

"You know, my old friend, I think you may actually be right." Weaver said.

Surprised, Discord spat out the chocolate milk he'd been drinking and tossed his glass up into the air. "That's wonderful! I never thought I'd live to see the day you'd say that! This calls for some more chocolate mi-"

"No it doesn't!" Weaver yelled as he deftly plucked Discord's glass out of the air before anymore of his library was blown up.

"Now, there's something I've been planning but have been as of yet unable to accomplish. I simply don't possess the power required to perform such a feat. But if you would be so kind as to lend me some of yours..."

"Now that's something else I never thought I'd live to hear you say. The great Fate Weaver, almighty Lord of Change and the master of magic, isn't powerful enough to do something? And coming to me for help to top it all off?" Discord said in faux astonishment.

"Yes, yes, I understand you're taking immeasurable pleasure in my predicament, but I assure you that you will benefit quite handsomely from this." Weaver continued.

"Alright, you have my attention, not necessarily my cooperation, but you have gotten me quite intrigued. Though forgive me if I remain skeptical of the fellow who calls himself a master of deception."

"Your skepticism is well understood old friend, frankly I'd be insulted if you didn't know me well enough to mistrust every word I say," Weaver smirked. "But my plan is a rather straightforward one. The Inevitable City, my home, was not destroyed in the sundering of this world, but rather dragged screaming into the maw of Warp. In those days following the collapse of my world, the Materium was so saturated by Warp energy that the boundary between this world and the next became nearly impossible to feel.

"Even I with my great power cannot reach far enough to grasp it. But if you were to add your power to my own it would give me the boost I require to reach and penetrate the barrier and drag my home back out of the Warp and into this reality."

"An interesting proposition, but I'm not really seeing the part where I benefit from this little arrangement." Discord said.

"I'm coming to that now." the raven replied. "Pulling something so large out of the Warp would damage the barrier nearly irreparably and would result in the formation of a self sustaining warp storm around the city. The warp storm would act as a permanent gateway into the Warp, a realm of infinite power and possibility. This would be your reward; with the Chaos Gods dead, the Warp would be yours to command as you see fit, you could leave behind this dull, unchanging world of love and harmony and become the god of your own personal kingdom of eternal chaos."

"Now that definitely sounds like something I could get behind!" Discord exclaimed. "The only problem I see is that I benefit far more than you do, what would be the catch to this little deal?"

"The 'catch', as you so eloquently put it, is that I benefit from your victory. My master, Tzeentch, sealed off the Warp to ensure that none could ever again match his greatest feat. By defying him and reopening the Warp, and creating a new Chaos god on top of that, I will have effectively bested the being that single handedly destroyed all of Chaos. I will have succeeded in out scheming the God of Scheming. And of course I will bring about a new era of Chaos in this world from my throne within The Inevitable City as well."

"Well when you put it like that I suppose I don't really have much of a choice in the matter. I simply can't afford to pass up an opportunity to become a god," Discord laughed. "Of course I'll help you with this most noble of endeavors, my old friend! How do we begin?"

"The city used to stand a few miles from the tower, the crater it left when it disappeared is where we must go to perform the ritual." Weaver explained.

"Excellent! Let's get to work then, I've always wondered what it would be like to be a god." Discord said.

"Well there's no time like the present. Let's begin, shall we?" Weaver rapped his staff against the ground and the two vanished in a burst of writhing violet.

Once the two were gone, a shadow detached itself from a book case, pausing for a brief moment before departing.

"It would seem we are not the only ones who have not been ourselves as of late."

________________________________________________________________________



"So how exactly are we gonna go about puttin' a stop to whatever it is Weaver 'n Discord are plannin'?" Applejack asked.

"Before we can even begin forming a plan we must locate my sister, Luna. We are going to need her help if we are to have any hope of putting a stop to them." explained the princess.

"Are you sure you aren't overestimating the challenge posed by these two?" Rarity questioned. "Surely the combined power of the Elements of Harmony and yourself will be more than a match for Discord and Fate Weaver. Doesn't adding Princess Luna to the mix seem a bit like overkill?"

"It took the power of both Luna and I along with the Elements of Harmony to defeat Discord alone." Celestia said, gravely. "Fate Weaver is easily Discord's better, even with both myself and Luna I fear we may not be able to stop them. And the situation is made all the more problematic by Fate Weaver's prophetic sight, he will be ready for us no matter what we do. From what little he told me of his brethren, the Lords of Change, it was impossible to defeat them because of this gift. The only way they could be bested was if Tzeentch himself wished for a Lord's defeat and sent them false visions of the future."

"So what? All that means is that we just need a plan so good that it'll work whether he sees it coming or not, simple as that!" Rainbow Dash said as if it were the most obvious thing in the world.

"I do suppose that's one way of looking at it." Celestia said. "However we need to know what they're planning before we can move against them, in the meantime we have to find my sister."

"We believe that we can save you some time with both of these matters, dearest Tia." a voice rang out from behind the group.

The assembled ponies turned to face this newest arrival and came face to face with Celestia's own sister, Princess Luna. Twilight and her friends bowed respectfully to her as she walked over to join them.

"Sister! It is good you are here, there is much to be discussed." Celestia said.

"We fear there is little time for discussion, sister." Luna began. "We come bearing very grave news. Our beloved teacher is not himself, he plots treachery and evil with the hated villain, Discord, we must bring him back to his senses!"

"Yes, my student, Twilight Sparkle, has just brought me news of the situation." Celestia said. "We need to work quickly to discover their plans."

"Hold on a second." interjected Rainbow Dash. "How do you know what those two are planning?"

"Tia told us of Weaver's desire for an audience with us so we went to visit him, but we hid ourselves when we noticed the presence of the draconequus." explained the princess. "We overheard their plans but we did not understand much of what was said, he spoke of a great cataclysm and of dead gods. But he spoke of his home and his master, he told us a little of these things when we were young. He plans to merge his powers with Discord's to defy his master's last wishes and pull The Inevitable City from its resting place within the Sea of Souls.

"When the city is recovered, Discord will pass through the hole in the barrier into the Great Ocean and use the power of that place to become a god. He will rule for eternity, untouchable within that realm while Weaver brings about a new age of Chaos from his throne in The Inevitable City."

The ponies felt their hearts sink at Luna's words. There could be no worse scenario than the one they now faced.

"Sister, if what you say is true then we have precious little time to act!" Celestia exclaimed.

"Fate Weaver is no fool, he will likely have put defenses in place by now. He will be ready for us." Luna said.

Celestia's gaze wandered over the ponies assembled before her, feeling her confidence rise with each determined face she looked upon. Finally she looked back at Luna, the fire of determination burning within her.

"Then we'll just have to make sure that we will succeed even if they see us coming." she declared, earning a few smiles from the ponies.

With that, Celestia teleported them to the Everfree Forest.

________________________________________________________________________


Deep in the Everfree Forest, Discord and Fate Weaver were going about the preparations for their ritual. Before the crater that used to be his home, Fate Weaver stood with Discord at the center of a massive eight pointed star he had carved into the ground.

"So how's this going to work?" the draconequus asked.

"Just stand here at the center of the Pantheon Star and no matter what happens do not leave. I shall take care of the rest." Weaver explained.

"Sounds easy enough." Discord said. "Now what do you plan to do about Celestia? I must say that I can't really see her just sitting idly by and letting us destroy the world."

"Don't worry yourself about that, my friend. Neither she nor her ponies can stop us." Weaver said.

"You seem awfully sure of that." Discord remarked.

Fate Weaver chuckled darkly at Discord's comment. "We shall succeed, my friend. I have foreseen it."

Discord rolled his eyes at the raven. "As if I've never heard that one before. I suppose I'll just follow your lead."

"Then let us begin!" Weaver exclaimed, jovially. He drove the haft of his staff into the ground at the very center of the star they stood in and left it there. The turquoise eye embedded within the staff began to glow with a familiar violet light that traveled down the staff and seeped into the star on the ground, lighting it up like a beacon.

Tendrils of light began to creep up Discord's feet and quickly he was covered in glowing veins of violet.

"Weaver..." he said, hesitantly.

"Do not worry, my friend, it's all part of the process. Now you may feel a slight tingling, but don't worry, this won't hurt much."

The veins covering Discord flared harshly and energy began to crackle along the length of his body, making him cry out in shock and pain.

"You lied, Weaver!" he yelled.

"Yes, well I suppose you could call it revenge for all the chocolate milk you've detonated in my library over the years." he replied, smugly.

Discord writhed in pain while the ritual siphoned his power and transferred it into the star at their feet. Then as quickly as they came, the tendrils retreated from Discord's form and the light from the star retreated back into Fate Weaver's staff.

Discord slumped to the ground in relief as the ritual ended, panting heavily. Rising to his feat, he weakly waved his eagle claw through the air. Nothing happened.

"Ugh, make this quick, Weaver. I do not enjoy being like this." he said with a grimace.

"It will be over before you know it." Weaver said, eyes riveted to his staff still embedded within the ground. "I would also advise that you stay within the radius of the Pantheon Star throughout the ritual. I cannot guarantee your safety otherwise."

"Yes yes, just get on with it." Discord replied, uncharacteristically irritable.

"Here goes nothing." Weaver said, reaching for his staff. As his hand closed around the staff, the power it contained shot up his arm and into his body, wreathing him in a violet lightning storm. Eyes wide and mouth opened in a silent scream, he endured the pain as he felt his power increase by leaps and bounds. When the light faded and Weaver's senses returned to him, he gazed upon Discord in astonishment.

"Discord," he gasped. "I never knew you possessed such power. If I didn't know any better I'd think you were some kind of long lost brother."

"I'm flattered." the draconequus said, his voice dripping with sarcasm.

"Now now, don't be like that. Here, have a drink on me," Weaver chuckled as he conjured a glass of chocolate milk. Discord glared at him.

"Or don't," Weaver shrugged, tossing the glass over his shoulder. An explosion rocked the forest behind him as the glass impacted. "You know, that really is quite fun. But enough fooling around, on to the main event!"

The ancient raven closed his eyes and began to muster his power, the addition of Discord's magical might sending shivers down his spine. As he summoned the power to him, the very air around him became suffused with magic. A violet mist permeated the air and bolts of energy crackled into existence all around him, the feeling was indescribable.

Weaver expanded his consciousness and reached out into the ether as he so often did in his quiet moments. This time, however, he felt resistance. A grin broke out across his face as he pushed on it, testing its strength. With his new power it felt almost like tissue paper.

Discord became aware of a low mumbling and realized Fate Weaver was counting backwards. From his experience that rarely ever signified anything good. As the raven reached "zero" a voice carried through the air.

"Fate Weaver!"

Discord turned to see not only Celestia, but Luna and the six ponies that had almost defeated him.

"Well lookie here, Weaver. We seem to have guests."

Opening his eyes, Weaver turned to face the group.

"Well hello, my little ponies." he said, jovially. "What brings you here to my neck of the woods?"

"Don't play dumb with us, bird-brain!" Rainbow Dash yelled. "We know you're trying to bring back The Inevitable City!"

"Oh dear me, I've been found out!" he replied. "Whatever shall I do?"

Rainbow Dash growled, but Celestia cut her off.

"Weaver, please don't do this!" she implored. "I don't know what you must be thinking, but I never intended to do anything to you!"

"Liar," he spat. "I knew what you had planned the moment you banished Luna! First you imprisoned Discord and usurped his throne, then you banished Luna to the moon and claimed sole leadership of the kingdom. You could have been a little more subtle about it, if you ask me."

"Fate Weaver, this is insanity! Just listen to yourself!" Luna cried. "Celestia was right to banish us, we could not control ourselves. And Discord had gone mad with power, she had no choice in the matter."

Fate Weaver stared at her as though just noticing her presence.

"Ah, hello little Luna, it's so good to see you again." he said, his expression softening. "I had hoped our reunion would be under... well, different circumstances."

Luna returned his smile. "It is good to see you too. But please, listen to my sister, she never bore you any ill will. This is simply a misunderstanding."

The raven sighed. "Perhaps an apology was enough for you, but it will take more than a few honeyed words to sway me from my path. I do hope you don't take offense, my dear Luna. After all," he said, glaring at Celestia. "you always were my favorite."

Celestia appeared genuinely hurt by his words and when she offered no response, Weaver turned back to face the crater.

"Now if that's all, I have a destiny to fulfill."

"Weaver!"

Once again, the raven sighed. "Yes, Miss Sparkle?"

"I don't care what you thought the princess had planned for you, she would never use the Elements against anyone without good cause." Twilight said. "If you're too stubborn to understand that all she ever wanted was to be your friend then you never deserved her friendship in the first place! Believe it or not, it is possible for others to be nice to you without having some kind of hidden agenda."

"You are young and naive." he said, his back still to her. "One must always be on their guard for the world is a dark place. The world will use you, the world will betray you and when your usefulness has come to an end, the world will cast you aside."

"No Weaver!" Twilight yelled. "Your world was dark! Your world used people! Your world betrayed people! Your world is dead! It's time that you accepted that and moved on with your life. There's a reason your world died, Weaver. Chaos isn't the answer, it could never be the answer. A world built upon the foundations of chaos could never survive."

Weaver whirled on the unicorn. "Insolent child! Chaos is mighty! Chaos culled weak from strong so that only those worthy of the world would rule it! The gods picked those that were strong and raised them up to glory!"

"And where did that get you?" Twilight shouted back. "Your gods destroyed your world and themselves with their childish bids for power! What kind of world is that to live in? Only a world built upon the foundations of peace and tolerance could ever work. You may think friendship is something to be laughed at, but never underestimate its power. With the power of friendship Equestria has not only survived but thrived!"

"Do not think to preach to me, little unicorn!" Weaver yelled, anger rising. "I am a living testament to the might of Chaos! I alone survived the cataclysm that ended my world, not because of your 'magic of friendship' but because I was powerful! So do not think to lecture me on what power is, I, who was ancient when your world was young, know better than you ever could about true strength!"

Twilight sighed. "I pity you for your beliefs, Weaver. True strength comes from those around you, from their love for you, and from within yourself, from your love of them. Chaos may be strong, but it's strong in all the wrong ways. The strength that comes from the magic of friendship is so much more. It's not even about raw power, real strength is the conviction to help, protect, and love those close to you. Friendship is true strength, friendship is what makes life worth living, friendship is..." she struggled for the right word. "Righteous."

The raven clenched his fists in fury at the unicorn's words. Her words aggravated him in more ways than he thought possible. How dare this creature think to lecture him, HIM, about power. So blind was she in her conviction, but if she wanted to contest him then he would not deny her the chance to pit her power against his. He would show them the folly of their ways.

He plunged his mind through the barrier between worlds and felt the familiar sensation of the Sea of Souls. He drank deep of the Warp's power and felt his might grow far beyond anything these pathetic creatures could ever hope to match. How he had longed to once again feel the glorious madness of the Warp. Bloated with the power of the Immaterium, he cast his gaze upon the ponies before him.

"You proclaim yourselves righteous and righteous your souls will most certainly be." the daemon roared. "Glory to Chaos! Death to Harmony! Once this world burns, I shall define RIGHTEOUSNESS!"

Fate Weaver turned back to the crater and grabbed hold of The Inevitable City within the Warp. Sinking the claws of his mind deep into the city, he began to pull. All over the crater unnatural Warp lightning began to strike the ground and a rumbling filled the air.

"Hey Weaver, I could probably lend a hand if you'd care to share some of that power you've got." Discord said.

Weaver looked at Discord. "Discord, my most steadfast ally. I return to you the power I borrowed and grant you a small taste of the Warp. Serve me well."

Weaver returned the power he had taken from Discord and then poured the might of the Warp into him. Discord gasped as he felt the surge of power that came with Warp exposure. Magical energy danced along his body as he felt his power nearly double itself.

"Oh my." was all he could think to say.

"Quickly! Use the Elements to stop him!" he heard Celestia cry.

"Oh no, we simply can't have that, can we," Discord chuckled.

Before the ponies could begin channeling the power of the Elements, Discord conjured six magical bubbles and launched them at each of the ponies. Before any of them could react they were impacted and imprisoned by the bubbles, separating them and preventing them from calling upon the power of the Elements.

Fate Weaver laughed at the display. "So you see the folly of relying on others. You are only strong together and are powerless when separated. I, however, rely solely upon my self for my power and cannot be divided and conquered like you."

"Now then, ladies." Discord said, addressing Celestia and Luna. "Shall we pick up where we left off all those years ago?"

"We defeated you then and we shall defeat you now." Luna declared.

"Well then let's see what you've got!" Discord exclaimed, happily.

Light enveloped Celestia's horn as points of light winked into existence all around her. One broke away from her and launched itself at Discord. With a snap of his fingers he teleported away, the star passing harmlessly through the space he had just occupied and detonating in a brilliant magical explosion as it impacted the ground.

Laughing, he conjured a swarm of paper airplanes and sent them flying at Luna. She nimbly dodged each one, hearing them explode as they passed by her. After the barrage ended, tendrils of darkness sprung from her shadow and ensnared Discord.

"Oh, Luna. I didn't know you were into this sort of thing," Discord laughed.

Celestia took advantage of his immobility and launched the rest of her stars at him. Each one of them found their mark, their combined energy resulting in a massive explosion. When the dust cleared a pink mass became visible where the draconequus had been. He had shielded himself in one of his cotton candy clouds which promptly spewed a jet of chocolate milk at Celestia. She responded by shooting a beam of light from her horn to meet it. The two attacks collided with Celestia's beam vaporizing the jet of chocolate milk and continuing down the stream until it impacted the pink cloud.

The pink cloud exploded when Celestia's beam hit it, sending Discord sailing through the air, laughing. His laughter ended abruptly, however, when Luna's shadow tendrils grabbed him at the peak of his flight and slammed him down into the ground. After a few tense moments Discord finally pulled himself from the small crater his impact made, his body crackling with magic.

"I suppose it's about time I took off the kid gloves, then." he said, cracking his fingers. "I think I'll try out some of these new powers ol' Weaver gave me."

With a snap of his fingers a bolt of violet lightning struck the ground near the two alicorns. Standing right where the lightning had hit was a strange and horrifying creature. It had a short, stubby body perched atop two long, spidery legs. Four arms ending in wicked claws jutted from its sides and a long tongue lolled from its fang lined maw. The most notable feature about the monster, though, was that it was a bright, uniformed pink all over its body.

The monster glared at the princesses with two beady yellow eyes as crackling balls of fire blazed to life in each of its hands. Before it had the chance to act, however, Celestia hurled another of her stars at the creature, obliterating it.

"Well that certainly was anticlimactic." grumbled Discord.

A cackling sound interrupted his thoughts as he brought his gaze to rest back on the area of the explosion. Shapes became visible as the dust cleared from the area. Where there was once one creature there now stood two, each slightly smaller in build than the original, but for the most part still the same, except that they were both blue instead of pink.

"Oh my, what a pleasant surprise," Discord chuckled.

The warp-spawn rushed at the two princesses, nimbly dodging every magic missile or shadow tendril the alicorns sent their way. Before the monsters got too close the princesses took off into the air to put more distance between themselves and the blue horrors. Seeing this, one horror knocked the other one over, grabbed its feet, and began to rapidly swing it in a circle. The horror let go of its counterpart, sending it sailing through the air after the princesses.

The horror crashed right into Luna, disrupting her flight and sending her and itself spiraling back to the ground. The two hit the ground and rolled a short distance before Luna managed to buck the monster from her back, sending it tumbling to the ground. Dazed, the creature was unable to resist as Luna ensnared it with her magical tendrils. Once the creature was completely entangled by them she squeezed, destroying the warp-spawn and sending it back to its realm in a burst of blue fire.

Enraged at the destruction of its twin, the remaining monster charged Luna only to be obliterated as Celestia caught it with another barrage of magical missiles.

"Sister, are you alright?" Celestia asked as she landed next to Luna.

"Of course, sister." Luna replied. "We are not so easily bested."

Looking past Discord, the princesses saw the progress Fate Weaver was beginning to make. The entire crater was wreathed in a psychic lightning storm and the rumbling had intensified, accompanied by a low tearing sound. The most disconcerting sight, however was a ghostly, insubstantial image of a city that flickered in and out of existence within the crater.

"Sister, we must dispose of Discord quickly, we do not have much time before Fate Weaver succeeds!" Luna said urgently.

"Aww, what's the matter?" Discord said with a pout. "Don't want to play with old Discord anymore?" With another snap of his fingers, dozens more bolts of violet lightning struck the ground, bringing with them the pink horrors from before.

Fires blazed to life in their hands which they wasted no time hurling at Luna and Celestia. Luna summoned a magical barrier around them, shielding them from the onslaught of fire balls. When the barrage ended, the barrier shattered into thousands of shards which Luna then hurled into the mass of daemons. The pink horrors were shredded to ribbons by the attack, but did not stay down for long. The remains of each pink horror reformed into two blue horrors just like the first one they fought.

The mass of gibbering warp-spawn charged at the two princesses, falling over each other trying to get to them first. The alicorn sisters devastated the daemons' ranks with a hail of magical projectiles and a flurry razor sharp shadow tendrils. But still the monsters came, constantly reinforced by storm of violet lightning conjured by a cackling Discord. On the verge of being overwhelmed, Celestia gathered her magic into her horn and let loose a destructive beam of sunlight. Likewise, Luna let loose with her own devastating midnight beam.

When the dust cleared from the assault, they were greeted by the sight of a still smiling Discord.

"Bravo ladies. What a show!" he called, clapping. "I wonder if you could pull that off again."

Raising his hands to the sky, he prepared to summon another wave of horrors from the Warp. In a slightly more serious tone, he added, "I do hope you see the futility of your actions, you'll never be able to overcome the power of Chaos."

"No Discord, it is Chaos that will fail!" Luna replied.

"Chaos will never triumph over Harmony." Celestia added. "And we will show you why!"

The two alicorns closed their eyes and began to summon their power. Humoring them, Discord watched the two condescendingly from a throne he conjured. An unnatural wind began to kick up around the two sisters and a further magical discharge was added to the air. Suddenly a great shadow was cast over the area and Discord began to feel uneasy. Looking up at the sky, he saw a sight that made the blood freeze in his veins. The moon had moved in front of the sun in a magnificent solar eclipse, casting the whole land in shadow.

The princesses opened their eyes and Discord felt a horrible sense of deja vu. Eyes glowing white with power, the alicorns spoke in unison.

"This is the power of our friendship."

Discord could only watch in terror as they brought their celestial bodies to bear as weapons against him. A beam of destructive energy erupted from the eclipse, lancing down from the sky like a spear thrown to the earth by a god. The beam struck Discord and devastated the land for almost a hundred yards in every direction around him.

Fate Weaver glanced over his shoulder at the commotion, worry seeming to creep into his features. "Discord!" he yelled.

The magical bubbles imprisoning Twilight and her friends destabilized and disappeared in the wake of Luna and Celestia's final attack on Discord.

"Quickly, my little ponies!" Celestia cried. "Stop Weaver!"

They needed no further prompting, they could see the city becoming more substantial by the second. They made their way over to Fate Weaver and began to channel the Elements against him.

"No!" he cried. "Stay back!"

The familiar magical light began to envelope the ponies and their jewelry began to glow with power. Wreathed by the power of the Elements, the ponies were lifted into the air.

"NO!" Weaver cried. "This isn't how it happened! This is not the way it was meant to be!"

A wave of light erupted from the ponies as a rainbow colored beam flew through the air towards the Lord of Change. In desperation, Weaver threw up innumerable magical barriers around himself, but it made little difference. The beam cast by the ponies passes through his defenses with no difficulty and hit its mark with unerring accuracy.

"NOOOOOOO!" Weaver yelled. He couldn't believe it, this was not what he had seen when he had gazed into the future. He had seen victory, a world in flames, he had seen himself sitting atop his throne within the city once again.

Eventually shock gave way to agony. It felt as if his very being was being torn apart by the power engulfing him. This was not at all what he had expected being turned to stone would feel like. Soon he realized that it was because he wasn't being turned to stone, but rather because he was indeed being torn apart.

Of course the Elements would see nothing worth redeeming in him, his escape was a risk that simply could not be taken. The only appropriate course of action was to annihilate him, tear him apart and scatter him to the winds of magic.

He felt his connection to the Warp fade and then vanish altogether. He watched as, once again, his home slid back into the Warp, torn to pieces by the sudden shattering of the bridge between worlds. He watched in despair as everything he had ever known was once again obliterated, the wound in his heart he had thought long healed reopened as he finally realized that Chaos was now and forever dead.

He watched in detached amusement as his feathers tore from his body and felt his wings disintegrate. He became confused as the pale skin of his arms became visible as his feathers disappeared. His confusion turned to panic as the plumage upon his head gave way to hair and his beak dissolved, making way for a nose and a lips, and his talons gave way to fingers. It was worse than he had imagined, he was not being destroyed, he was becoming mortal.

As quickly as it began, the process ended. Where once an avatar of the Raven God stood, there was now but a man of a little over two decades clad in a dull black robe. What once was Fate Weaver stared at his hands in horror, they looked exactly as they did the day of his ascension over ten thousand years ago. He looked up as he heard the sound of chuckling.

There before him stood his old form, the elderly raven librarian he used to be, staring down at him with a paternal smile.

"My most faithful servant." the raven spoke.

Fate Weaver said nothing, but stared in astonishment at the being before him.

"Do you not recognize me, my servant?" the being asked.

He did, but he did not want to speak the word. He did anyways.

"Tzeentch." he said. It answered the question he had about why he had not foreseen his defeat. His master had hidden the future from him.

"It's good to see you still remember me after so long." the Chaos God said. "It's also good to see that you're still sharp as ever. You set your sights quite high this time, didn't you? Though I suppose I should have expected you to try and one up me some day. In fact, that's exactly what I did."

"You knew this would happen?" Fate Weaver asked.

"Of course I did, I am The Great Schemer, after all. And I simply couldn't have you trouncing my greatest victory, now, could I?"

"How are you even here?" Weaver asked. "I saw you die."

"You saw most of me die." Tzeentch corrected him. "But as long as you lived a part of me still lived on within you. When I lifted you up to daemonhood I imbued you with a part of myself, that is where your power came from."

"And so you waited for me to make my move then sent me a false vision of the future." Fate Weaver surmised.

"Exactly. The rest took care of itself. Though most of the credit goes to your wonderful friends here." Tzeentch said, indicating the approaching ponies.

"Fate Weaver?" Celestia asked, looking between the man and the raven.

"That would be this one." the raven said, indicating Fate Weaver. "Though I dare say he won't be needing that name anymore."

"What do you mean?" asked Twilight.

"When your Elements of Harmony separated him from his power, he ceased to be Fate Weaver, for that is a name born only by my personal champion in this world." Tzeentch explained.

"Do you mean to say that you are..." Luna hesitated.

"Tzeentch, The Great Deceiver, The Changer of Ways, The Master of Magic, and whatever else you feel like, at your service," he bowed. "And since your friend here is no longer my champion, he will no longer be able to carry that name."

"So does that mean we gotta use that really long name he's got now?" Rainbow Dash asked.

"Ar'Karaleth'Kar'Abosh." Tzeentch said. "A fine name, but it was also his daemon name. No, you will simply have to use the one his mother gave him those many years ago."

"So what would that be?" Applejack inquired.

The man looked once more at his hands and then at each of the ponies arrayed before him. Thoughts no longer clouded by the madness of daemonkind, his mind was free to realize the atrocities he had been about to commit on this world. And still, knowing what he had been about to do, here these ponies stood, ready to forgive him. For the first time in ten thousand years, The Weaver of Mortals' Fates felt tears in his eyes.

"Kairos." he said. "My mother named me Kairos."

___________________________________________________________________________


Celestia looked up at the tower before her. Ravenspire, it was called, or The Black Library, it depended on who you asked. As she entered the tower she pondered on the events of the past few days. His ultimate scheme complete, Tzeentch had departed the world, never to return. Discord had not been destroyed by Celestia and Luna's attack, bloated by the power of the Warp, he had only been knocked out. He was now safely imprisoned within the walls of Canterlot Palace, but he would not be returned to stone. The princesses had decided to give him a chance to redeem himself.

Her thoughts wandered to her friend, Fate Weaver. No, she corrected herself, not Fate Weaver anymore. Kairos. She liked his mortal name. Following the events of that day he had asked their forgiveness and then retreated to his library to think. Several days had passed since then and Celestia had decided to pay him a visit.

She walked through the impossible architecture of the tower, up staircases and through hallways, until she finally found herself before the door to the great library. Opening it, she looked inside for any sign of the tower's sole inhabitant. She spotted him sitting atop a book case.

He was once again clad in his usual robes and holding his staff. The turquoise eye of the staff had a spider web of cracks running all throughout it, its power having been broken when Tzeentch died. He held a glass of chocolate milk is his other hand, sipping on the drink every so often and attempting to maintain a cluster of weak sparks floating in the air before him.

"Hello Kairos." Celestia said. "How are you feeling?"

Kairos didn't say anything as she approached him. She sat down before the book case he was perched on and waited. The young man gulped down the last of his chocolate milk and wiped away the mustache it left behind with the sleeve of his robe.

"It's as though I've gone deaf, blind, and numb," he grumbled.

"I'm sure you'll get used to being mortal again soon enough." Celestia assured him.

"I don't doubt it." he agreed, sliding down off the book case. "But it's really going to suck."

Celestia smiled and bumped against him. "Well Luna and I are here if you ever need anything. And don't forget about Twilight and her friends in Ponyville, I'm sure they'd love for you to visit them sometime soon."

"Twilight was here the other day." Kairos said. "She's a nice girl. We talked for a while, I apologized for making such an arse of myself back in the forest. I even offered to donate some of my books to her library."

"Well that was nice of you." Celestia said with a smile.

Kairos chuckled. "Poor lass nearly fainted. But the way I see it, I've got a lot to do to start making up for, well, nearly destroying the world and all that."

"Kairos, you don't have to do anything other than be their friend." the alicorn said.

He fell silent after she said that. He rapped his staff against the ground and scowled when nothing happened. He concentrated hard on the empty glass he still held and eventually it refilled itself with chocolate milk. He took a sip.

"He loves you, you know."

"What?" Celestia asked, confused.

"Discord. He's had a thing for you for ages now."

Celestia blushed. "Well clearly the Elements did more to you than I thought, there's no way that could be true."

Kairos laughed and took another sip of his chocolate milk. "Did the cotton candy clouds and chocolate rain not give it away? Wasn't that what you begged me to teach you to make when you were just a little filly?"

Celestia's blush deepened and Kairos laughed at her expense. "I'm not telling you to do anything about it, my dear, I'm just throwing it out there, is all."

Celestia huffed. "I liked you better when you kept your thoughts to yourself."

"Would you like to stay for a while, Celestia?" he said suddenly. "I've only just realized how dreadfully boring this library can be."

"Of course." she answered with a smile. "But only on one condition."

"And what would that be, my dear?" Kairos asked, already knowing her answer.

"You have to tell me a story." she said.

Kairos chuckled warmly at her request. "Anything in particular?"

"Surprise me." she responded.

Kairos sat down with his back against the book case and Celestia laid down in front of him.

"It is the forty-first millennium." he began. "For more than a hundred centuries the Emperor has sat immobile on the Golden Throne of Earth..."