• Published 1st Feb 2013
  • 674 Views, 3 Comments

At The Precipice - Teh dr3am3r



How far does vengeance take us? How far will we go to take our revenge? Betrayal finds a life of torment vain, and friendship turns the tides of war once again.

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Chapter 3 : A Party for the Apocalypse

Chapter 3 : A Party for the Apocalypse


A bright pink mare stood upright on her hind legs in the kitchen of Sugarcube Corner, rolling a slab of dough into the base of a three-tier cake on order for a local wedding. Next to her Mrs. Cake sat in a rocking chair, stirring a bowl of blue frosting into a creamy glob of sugary goodness. The whisk in her hoof slowly churned the icing in contrast to the rapid strokes of the roller in the pink mare’s grasp.

Suddenly, the baker rolling the dough stopped mid-roll, ear twitching erratically. Her tail flicked to the side with a mind of its own, swishing left and right without any direction from its owner. A spasm in her flank involuntarily kicked her leg outward and marked the end of her body’s apparent rebellion.

She thoughtfully mumbled something unintelligible under her breath before suddenly vanishing in a blurry streak of pink. Unfazed by the sudden disappearance of her assistant, the soft blue mare remained in her chair slowly rocking back and forth as she whipped at the frosting. She was used to the spontaneous ball of energy and her eccentric personality; that was just Pinkie Pie.

<>


The familiar sensations of her Pinkie Sense set her into a frenzied rush. It had been quite some time since any pony new had arrived in Ponyville. Almost two whole days had passed since Merry Weather’s “Welcome to Ponyville!” party and Pinkie was ecstatic that she could make another friend so soon!

“Ooh! Ooh! I bet it’ll be another mare again!” she squeaked giddily as she skipped in the direction her senses told her the newcomer would arrive from. Her hyperactive excitement only escalated as she spotted the unfamiliar face in the distance, slowly trotting from the direction of the Everfree. For the slightest moment, her demeanor sagged under the weight of where he was coming from, but she pushed aside the apprehension and continued forward with the biggest smile she could manage.

As she drew nearer to him, the first thing she noticed was that he had a funny gait, occasionally tripping over his hooves like a newborn foal would. The next thing she noticed was his lack of a cutie mark despite his apparent age, mid-forties or so. Without a thought, she ignored his features and focused on making him feel as welcome as possible; she hadn’t failed yet at everypony being her friend and she had no intention of breaking that streak.

“Hi!” she shouted as soon as he was in earshot. His swiveled head in her direction signaled his comprehension and he slightly altered his course in her direction. When he was no more than a few feet away, Pinkie shouted, “Welcome to Ponyville! I’m Pinkie Pie and this is my pet alligator, Gummy!” she pulled the bewildered reptile from out of... well, nowhere, he seemed to have just materialized in her grasp as she pulled him out.

The stallion said nothing, but just smiled wide at her in an awful approximation of a grin. She blinked at the awkward expression, but ignored it and stowed her pet back into whatever she pulled him from. “What’s your name?” she asked, nearly yelling. The stranger remained smiling for a few seconds before pointing at his mouth and shaking his head. “Ooh! Ooh! I love guessing games! Umm... Albert? Norbert? Bill? How about James, or Ryan, or Sam?”

His bewildered expression showed her error and she thought for a few moments before vomiting a long stream of names too quickly to decipher. He only shook his head no as she stood panting.

Suddenly regaining her breath, Pinkie grabbed the stranger by the hoof and yanked him towards Ponyville. “Okay,” she began. “I will call you Bob okay? Welcome to Ponyville Bob!!” His ears flinched at her voice, and she lowered her voice a tad. “Okay, there are lots of things to do in Ponyville, but before we do anything, we HAVE to have a “Welcome to Ponyville” party so you can meet everypony and so they can meet you and you can meet them.” She continued babbling incessantly as she led him through the streets of the town, but the stallion only had eyes for the strange buildings and the many colors that marked the crowds. Ponies made way for the pair and gave the stallion friendly smiles, knowing full well the ritual of Pinkie’s welcome.

Eventually, Pinkie led him to Sugarcube Corner and showed him inside. She brought him to a room off to the side of the main foyer and led him to a couch. He looked at the furniture dumbly, then glanced at Pinkie with a look of total confusion on his face. It was only then that the mare noticed that his nostrils were flaring and he was taking several breaths in rapid succession. She set her own nose to work and could smell a baking cake in the oven. Shrugging it off, she pointed at the floor, “Stay here alright? I’ll be back in a jiffy.” she said quickly before bolting out of the room. Once she was in the main room, she pulled Gummy out and set him on the floor. His blank gaze stared into nothingness as she pulled out a larger-than-a-pony party canon from the same place Gummy had been in.

With a giggle she yanked the string at it’s rear and the room exploded into party streamers and decorations that would take any other pony hours to put up. Satisfied that the decoration was done, she wheeled the canon into a nearby broom closet and shut the door behind it. This party would be awesome!

<>

Thoroughly disoriented, Fenrir sat firmly on the floor and gazed around the room. Nowhere near as elaborate or as colorful as the previous room, the walls and sparse decoration seemed drab in comparison. He eyed the strange object the pony had pointed at and sniffed it tentatively. It smelled of ponies and of other things he couldn’t quite place in his mind, but he had no idea what to do with it. He wandered about the room examining and smelling things, occasionally tripping over his annoying hooves.

“I want my paws back.” he mumbled under his breath, eying the shiny keratin attached to his leg. The hoof flickered and became disfigured at the words and he reprimanded himself, he really needed to be more careful.

When he was sniffing at a fluffy square thing, someone cleared their throat behind him. He dropped the object and whirled to see who had snuck up on him. An older blue mare was watching him from where she was sitting in some kind of strange cage. “Sit down if you like, Pinkie will be back in a moment.” she said in a motherly voice.

Fenrir obliged and sat down on the softer part of the floor in the center of the room. He wondered how he hadn’t noticed the mare as he produced a great big smile. She returned it before saying, “You don’t have to sit on the carpet, sit on the couch. I guarantee it is much more comfortable.” Before Fenrir could figure out what a carpet was, the door opened revealing Pinkie Pie.

“Hi Mrs. Cake! This is Bob. I don’t know his real name because he can’t speak or his disguise will be revealed so I gave him the name Bob!” the aforementioned masquerader’s head snapped to attention at the mention of his disguise and he sprang to his hooves, or rather clumsily scrambled to them. Pinkie winked at him and grabbed his hoof, yanking him into the room from before.

Before he could see anything Pinkie slammed the door shut, leaving him in absolute darkness. Half a heartbeat later, lights suddenly turned on, blinding him as a loud chorus of “Surprise!” attacked his ears. Barely able to comprehend what was going on, the stallion was presented to a line of ponies shuffling past as they introduced themselves to the stranger.

“Hi, I’m Featherduster.” and then, “His name is Bob!” was the manner several dozen ponies met him, whilst he struggled to take in the crowd as they began to group together and do bizarre things. Making a game out of eating apples out of a bucket of water, sticking strange hairy things to a poor mural of a pony as they stumbled about like drunks blindfolded, swinging sticks at a weird,stiff pony hanging by a rope and several other incredulous things.

After several minutes of friendly smile after friendly smile filing past, the disguised wolf eventually relaxed and began to enjoy himself. He caught Pinkie staring at his flank and raised his eyebrow inquisitively. “Why are you swinging your tail so much?”

“I’m enjoying myself.” He wanted so badly to say it, to say anything, but he just shrugged and resumed watching a gray bird-pony with a golden mane stick the furry things on the rear end of the painted pony. The crowd gained great amusement when she put it where the tail should have been. Suddenly, the world vanished and something was tied over his eyes while another thing was placed in his mouth. Before he could move to defend himself or spit whatever it was out, someone began spinning him like a top while he fought for balance.

After the world finished spinning, he head his host yell something about pinning a tail on a pony. He stood motionless as the wheels in his brain sluggishly chinked together, he must be playing one of the games. With an intake of breath, the sour stench of the dried paint led him to the spot he wanted. His nose traced the edges of the invisible paint until he pressed the thing onto the wall. A loud chorus confirmed his success and applauded him.

“Holy moly, I don’t think I’ve seen anyone miss so... bad.” Fenrir tore off the blindfold and looked at the “tail.” A blush made its home on his cheeks as he spotted it in a rather sensual position, right in the crotch area of the pony.

Pinkie put a leg around him and dragged him away from the hysteric crowd, “The only awkward part was you smelling it before placing it.” she said with a chuckle. “I wanna introduce you to more of my friends. These are, like, my best friends in all of Equestria.” She brought him over to a group of five mares who were engaged in various conversations. His eyes found the alicorn who had transformed him, who gave him a gentle nod before returning to her conversation with a pearly mare at her left.

“Alright, this is Rainbow Dash, Fluttershy, Applejack, Rarity, and Princess Twilight.” She said with a wave of her foreleg. The orange mare, Applejack, held out her hoof and Fenrir instinctually gave it a sniff, much to the puzzlement of the group, with exception of Twilight and Pinkie. Applejack looked at her hoof, confused as Twilight broke into an amused grin.

“Don’t worry AJ, wolves do that.” Pinkie stated plainly. Again the disguised wolf spun to look at her, but she seemed unaffected by the secret she somehow knew. She remained impassive as she wandered off to play some games, leaving him with the group.

“So... Where are you from dear?”

The stallion looked to Twilight for reprieve, to which she only smiled knowingly. “Actually, I am already acquainted with this stallion. How has Ponyville been so far?”

Nodding enthusiastically, he tried to convey his joy through his expression. “What’s the matter, cat got your tongue?” the bird-pony, Rainbow Dash, teased. He only shook his head and pointed to him mouth, shaking his head again. “Can’t talk? Another shake.

“Well that sucks. Ah couldn’t get through ‘ta day if’n Ah couldn’t say nothin’. Sounds mighty borin’.” The disguised wolf shrugged his shoulders, he didn’t mind, even though it was difficult to remain silent at direct questions.

Twilight abruptly stood and stretched her wings. “Come Bob, I must speak with you in private.” Fenrir obediently followed her out the door into the abandoned street. It seemed the entire town was inside the party. When they had walked a comfortable distance away, Twilight sat down on a bench and patted the seat next to her with a hoof. Recognizing the gesture, Fenrir promptly sat in the dirt to which Twilight laughed somewhat.

“I did some research. The spell will only last a few more minutes, we had perfect timing. If Pinkie hadn’t brought you over we would have had a disaster.”

“End the spell now, I will leave on my own paws. Much easier that way.” HIs apparition flickered and vanished at his words. With a mighty yawn and a stretch he shook his real self back into commission. Twilight released the size spell on him and he soon stood much taller than she, it seemed he had grown somehow. Without a word, the wolf trotted off in the direction of the forest. But before his figure disappeared around the corner, he stopped and looked over his shoulder.

“Thank you for this, It has been so long since I had anybody. Skoll and Hati will return soon, you had best prepare yourself. Perhaps we will meet again someday.” And with that he dashed away from town without anypony seeing him.

Twilight sat in contemplation over his words. Skoll and Hati, who were they? She had never heard of either of the names, nor did she understand why he sounded so morbid in his prophecy.

“Compendium of Nhordic Mythologies.”

“What the-” Pinkie sat next to her slowly eating a cupcake. How she had come to sit there, Twilight had no idea but she brushed off the question. That was just Pinkie Pie.

“Nhorse Mythology?”

“Yeah. You don’t have it in the Ponyville library. It’s in the Canterlot Archives, in the secret library behind bookshelf 3J.

“Pinkie, you never cease to amaze me. How do you know these things?”

“Don’t ask questions you don’t want to know that answers to.”

“What are you talking about?”

Pinkie suddenly burst out into hysterics. After regaining her composure, “Oh silly-billy, you gotta have some fun sometimes.” her expression suddenly darkened and her face turned serious. “Seriously, look for Prophecies of Ragnarok. You played right into their hooves.”

“Whose hooves?”

Pinkie didn’t answer, only pulled another cupcake from behind her back and proceeded in stuffing her mouth. “These are delicious. Imma go get some more.” Jumping from the bench, she skipped away, just being Pinkie Pie.

A loud pop and a bright flash of light exploded behind the mare as she walked through the door.

<>

Rushing through the Archives on her outstretched wings, Twilight hunted down the section Pinkie had told her about. Princess Celestia had never said anything about a secret section and she could hardly believe that Pinkie had known of it. Then again Celestia had many secrets, she may not have thought it important or something.

She found 3J, but after inspecting the shelves, Twilight found nothing to indicate that there was anything behind it. She cast a revealing spell, the one she had used to find the wolf, but nothing happened as it passed over the shelves. She lit up her horn again and tried to move the bookcase, but it refused to budge. Thoroughly stymied, she filed through the book one at a time, looking for anything, any catch or secret lever that might reveal the passage Pinkie had told her about.

Her idle mind began wandering to and fro throughout the wolf’s words. What had he meant? what was so bad about Skoll and Hati coming back? He had hinted that he had once known them well, but what was so bad about them? If the book held the answers to her questions then she absolutely had to figure out the conundrum before her.

“Oh Celestia help me, I’m looking for something that doesn’t even exist.”

“Use your horn.”

The familiar voice startled Twilight who whirled on the pony. “Pinkie?! What the buck are you doing here? How did you arrive so-”

“Just use your horn.”

“Use it on what? I don’t see-”

“Twilight c’mon.” Pinkie groaned flatly. Only then did Twilight see her. The normally hyperactive mare’s mane hung flat over a leather cuirass that covered her shoulders. Across her back rested a long katana in a silver scabbard. The impatient look on her face forced the disturbed princess to look at the shelf and touch her horn to one of the oak shelves. A small click reached her ears and the bookcase shifted slightly, before swinging open like a door on rusty hinges. With a resounding boom, the door stopped against the wall of the passage hidden behind it. Without a word Pinkie trotted into the tunnel, leaving Twilight with her mouth hanging agape.

Pinkie led her down the passageway more several long minutes before the tunnel opened into a large circular room whose walls were lined with thousands of books. In the center of the room stood a huge circular table of stone almost a hundred feet across, encircled by high-backed chairs. On the table face before each chair, different shaped grooves were carved into strange lines. Pinkie drew her katana and walked around the table until she placed the blade into one of the slots.

The metal began shining like a miniature sun and slid further into the table until it seemed the sword was a part of the stone. The pink mare turned to the bookshelves and produced a book with a size that impressed even Twilight. With a heavy thud, Pinkie set the book on the table and opened it to a page lined with runes and glyphs. She waved Twilight over and the princess cautiously complied until the page was easily visible. She didn’t even recognize the line, dots, and dashes that lined the page in what she assumed was script.

“Cast a translation spell.” Pinkie ordered.

“Wait, what is-”

“Cast it.” she commanded harshly. Twilight flinched slightly at her tone, she had never seen Pinkie so... not Pinkie. Obeying, she cast the appropriate spell and the lines shifter together into the modern language. “Read it aloud.”

“Not without some answers.”

“Then the earth will die because of you. I have no intention to explain myself. Now, read.”

Insulted, but fearful of her threat, she read the words on the page, feeling like a slave rather than a princess.

“Ragnarok, the end of the world according the Nhorse mythology and the end of the world as the truths we hold. A family of wolves... Pinkie I don’t-”

“Twilight, for the love of Celestia, your family, your subjects, and whatever else you hold dear, read the damn book!” Pinkie yelled, anger dripping from her voice as she slammed her hoof onto the table with a might bang.

“A family of wolves lived in the forest of what we now know as the Everfree forest. As with all creatures of the Everfree, magic flowed through their veins as much as blood and these were fierce creatures. Legend claims that these wolves could swallow whole cows in one mouthful, and were the size of mountains, but paleontologic evidence found by The novel character and actual treasure hunter, Daring Do, has found the remains of the bitch in the pack. Though not the size legend told of, the she-wolf was much, much larger than alicorns, its skeleton rivaling the scale of the Giraffes.

In the ancient world where the gods themselves roamed free over the earth, reigning over their respective elements, a god named Loki, slaughtered the mother of three pups. The skeleton found by Daring Do is believed to be this specific creature. In vengeance two of the wolves hunted him down. But, being the god of deceit, he tricked them into believing that their mother had died of old age and blamed the passage of the sun and moon for her death. The wolves believed him and the legends tell us that they ascended into some form of deistic power and gave chase. Hati the scion of hatred, hunted the moon, whilst Skoll the scion of vengeance snapped his maw at the sun.

Astronomers confirm two constellations that shift at such a rate as to almost present a moving picture. A larger string of stars present the gaping maw of a monster at the tail of the sun. But because of the day, this can only be seen with the aid of seeing magic. At night, the commonly known Ursa Major is in fact, a wolf when viewed with similar magic. The legend of Ragnarok tells us that Skoll and Hati with devour the sun and moon, plunging the world into darkness and marking the beginning of the end of the world. Study has shown that the incident of Nightmare moon is an incarnation of Hel, the scion of death and destruction in Nhorse mythology. It is believed, although not yet proven, that Hel possessed Princess Luna and attempted to bring about Ragnarok by aiding the wolves in their task.”

Twilight looked at Pinkie with wide eyes found that they had been joined by several others, all adorned in similar attire to Pinkie. Among that crowd she spotted Lyra Heartstings, a mare from Ponyville she had met once or twice.
“Read the next section, it’s the prophecy regarding Ragnarok. It has a few details that Pinkamena believed will be familiar to you.” Twilight looked at the source of the voice, an earthy brown stallion with a mane the color of gold.

“A village there was between-”

“Please,” the stallion interrupted, “Read it to yourself. We all know it by heart.”

Twilight resumed reading, and by the time the last line was absorbed by her brain, she felt a sickening lurch in her stomach. She read it again, and again a third time. Hardly believing what her eyes were telling her the script said, She played over the events of the day in her head.

“I-”

“The wolf Pinkamena tells us you helped was Fenrir, the wolf of legend and the third pup. You helping him has marked prophecy.”

“He attacked me, calling me Odin and talking about Valhalla and Valkyries and stuff. I never did anything with mythology because those things can’t be true.”

“Can’t they? Why can’t they be true? All legends are born of truth, and though there is a difference between truth and fiction, there is little between history and mythology. Were Celestia and Luna not goddesses in their own right?”

“Cadence too.”

A knowing smile played across the blonde stallion’s face. “Cadence doesn’t even know she has divine blood. If I am not mistaken, she is Freyja’s daughter.”

“The time is drawing near. Fenrir said we only have a few days left and I am sad to say the stars agree.” piped a purple mare sporting a mottled bald head. “I am Starry Gaze, the most accomplished astronomer in Equestria. If time permits I will show you the star-wolves.”

Twilight couldn’t help gawking at the bald head, a sight almost unheard of. It was obviously a burn from long ago, but she couldn’t stop glancing at it. Either the mare never noticed or didn’t care.

“Twilight, I’m a member of the Jarls of Midgard, an elite fighting force and secret guild preparing for the end.” Twilight couldn’t bring herself to look at Pinkie as she uttered those words. Something about them made her mind reject the concept of “the end of the world.”

“Only Celestia and Luna knew about them and recruited us specially. Ponyville was a cover, Pinkie Pie, an act and this, war, is my life. I wouldn’t be who I am if it weren’t for-”

“Stop it!” Twilight rubbed her head with her hooves, slowly kneading her temples in an effort to shut out what they were saying. It couldn’t be true. There was no possible way that stupid stories could be true. But what about the prophecy? It was like somepony had been writing it while watching her. Mythology wasn’t real, that was why she never wasted her time on it. Mythology was just that: Mythology. It was redundant because the stuff that went on in it was absurd. But the wolf had asked about Odin, a pony with six legs.

Aha! That was something they couldn’t possibly know, what Fenrir had said about Odin. They would have to be lying to her.

“Describe Odin to me.”

The blonde stallion answered her, “He is what is called a sleipnir, a pony with six legs and a mane like-”

“Gah!!” Twilight spun on her hoof and walked straight out of the room, paying no heed to Pinkie’s protests. “Leave her be Pinkamena, if she will not listen to reason, them I fear-”

Twilight shut off that accursed stallion’s voice. It was preposterous, wasn’t it? She reentered the library and walked away from the secret passage, leaving the hidden door wide open. “Twilight wait!” She continued stomping past the bookshelves and right out the door of the library. Pinkie ran around the corner from the direction of the throne room and stood in front of Twilight. The stewardess tried to step around the armored mare, but Pinkie blocked her path.

“Pinkie, if you don’t move-”

“You’ll what? Have me arrested? Look Twilight, there is more than enough evidence. Celestia taught you better than that! She taught you-”

“Don’t you dare think to lecture me on Celestia!” Twilight bellowed, forcing Pinkie to take a step back. She thought she could push the levy? Then she would feel the flood. “I knew Celestia better than you ever could! She taught me to look at what is real and that is what I am doing. A wolf affected by the Everfree forest’s magic could somehow talk. I averted a panic by transforming him and putting his loneliness to rest so now he will leave Ponyville alone. It is as simple as that.”

“Then how do you explain his knowledge of Odin and Celestia? How do you explain him knowing Luna’s ancient name? He was there Twilight. He is Fenrir, the very same wolf that the old gods buried and bound, and now he has returned. I will bet you my rank of Jarl that he had thin strips of silk tied about his ankles. Did he not?”

Twilight could faintly recall the feeling of cloth on her skin when he forced her to the ground. But how could she possibly know that? Hiding in the bushes? The revealing spell would have shown anypony nearby. But Twilight refused to believe it. “I used to want to know the exact answer for everything, but when I tried and failed to figure out your Pinkie Sense, I realized there are some things that cannot be explained.”

“I can channel Discord’s power.”

“It was coincidence Pinkie, and... W-what?”

“I said I can channel Discord’s power. Celestia recruited me when she saw what my ‘Pinkie Pie-ness,’ as everypony calls it, could do. It’s always just felt natural to me, but Celestia thought that I could do more with it. She taught me to drain some of his power and I can use it to “break the fourth wall” so to speak. The human that is writing this conversation right now will agree with me: The prophecy is true, Fenrir is the wolf from that book, and Skoll and Hati are about to return.”

“What the buck is a human?”

“Dunno. You have to open your eyes Twilight, you need to prepare like Fenrir told you to.”

Twilight felt like the world had gathered up all of its physics and just thrown them to the wind. Her head spun, and a slight ache from her horn came out of nowhere, giving her the worst headache she could remember. If what Pinkie said was true, then the world was about to descend into war. “Pinkie... I-I need to... think.”

“Think? Think about what? War is coming and we need to do something: gather armies, pull in militia, and everything else.”

“P-please Pinkie... I just... can’t. Not without hard evidence that... war... is coming.”

“Dear Celestia help us...” Pinkie ran a hoof through her hair and fidgeted with her pauldrons. “If-

“Speak of the devil, and she shall appear.” rang a clear and regal voice. Without hesitation, Twilight spun frantically and nearly had to catch her chin as it fell like lead. Celestia strode down the hall wearing golden armor carved and crafted to the utmost perfection of beauty and grace. In the place of her normal mane, billowing swathes of fire licked the air and heated the hall, though her coat remained clear and pristine. Instead of her normally kind smile, a serious expression made her even more stunning to look upon and added to her imperious presence.

Twilight nearly keeled over in shock when she spotted the... thing behind her former mentor. It looked like an earth-pony. In fact it looked almost exactly like a pony except for the two extra legs that walked snugly behind his normal front legs. A golden helm rested upon his head, but only had one eye hole where smooth metal covered the right side of his face. His snow white mane drifted over dark fur so purple it almost looked black.

“Twilight Sparkle, stewardess to Helia’s throne. We finally meet.” He walked closer to the stunned alicorn, hooves producing two too many clops. She could only look at him dumbly as Pinkie descended into a low bow. As he came to stand in front of the dumbstruck Twilight, a raven flew through the window and alighted upon his head, cawing angrily. Leaning down, his beak whispered into the sleipnir’s ear, causing Twilight to step back involuntarily.

“Do not fret about Hugin, Stewardess. He only brings us news of Hati; the moon is gone and his hunt is complete.”