• Published 16th Feb 2013
  • 2,248 Views, 59 Comments

Equestria: Infinite (Bioshock) - ThatMrSomeGuy



When Twilight finds a huge gap in Equestrian History, she uncovers an ugly truth about an Equestria before Celestia's rule.

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7. Ouverture la Cage à Oiseaux

Princess Celestia talks in so much detail. I cannot help but wonder how she knows so much about a story she's not even in yet.

Booker released the Vigor and closed his eyes. He waited, and waited. There was no thud, no splat. The Vigor really did work. When Booker saw it safe to see again, what he found out that his body was actually raising up from his near collision to the floor. Curious to know why, he got his answer from looking to his right. His front right leg was gone. Instead, a fiery wing took its place. To Booker's left was the same. His observations led him to a simple straightforward conclusion. Aaaand, now I'm a phoenix.

Even though Booker would often question logic from something as extreme as this, considering all the bizarre things he experienced this past day, his sense of logic was out the door long before he stepped into the city. So, Booker just accepted the fact that a drink turned him into a phoenix and embraced the moment.

Having bird wings was very unlike anything Booker expected. He thought that it was just multiple flaps to stay above ground level. That wasn't the case. There was a lot more to it. One of the biggest factors contributing to a bird's flight patterns was the wind. The wings need to be in angles adjusting to the wind and navigate their way in the direction he needs to go. When caught against the wind, he tilted the wings again so that they went with the flow. That's all that gliding was about, going with the flow.

The bullets rushing past him were a real buzz-kill. Had he forgotten that the police were trying to shoot him down, Booker would have let the wind carry him wherever it pleases. It would be hard to not notice he was a flying target anyways. By no means were the cops marksmen, but so many shots whizzed by. It was only a matter of time 'til one got a lucky shot. That time happened sooner than expected.

The effect was almost immediate. Booker started to fold in his right wing, forcing his left to take over and find a safe place to land. He looked at the right to confirm his suspicions. The top of the wing had a trail of blood falling behind him. Booker faced forward only to see a large open window in front of him. Though the hole was big enough to fit his body, poor one-winged flying ended with a sloppy hit to the side of the edge of the window frame before falling inside.

* * *

"It appears we have company."

"That we do brother. Seems like this one was too busy enjoying his flight to bother getting here sooner."

"For the record, I would pick flight over fourth-dimensional travels any day. Much less loops and paradoxes."

"You should have thought of that before you stepped through."

"And here we are."

"Odd. This one is the tardiest of them all."

"I already lost track of how many times he passed out. At least he came with a new gun. Better late than never, I suppose."

"He isn't in the right condition to continue onward. His leg is bleeding."

"Treat the gunshot and put him on the makeshift bed. He'll have to stay for a little while."

"More time wasted."

"Or more time saved?"

"Wasted. It delays when the two will be together."

"Saved, considering the painful period of time that happens before it."

"It all depends on when we think he should take his medicine."

"What matters now is that he be ready in a fit state."

"Don't change the subject."

"Need I remind you he is gushing blood."

"You're just finding an excuse."

"We can argue while we heal him."

"A good point."

* * *

(To the tune of The Bonnie Blue Flag)

♪ As long as the Union was faithful to her trust ♪

♪ Like friends and like brethren, kind were we, and just ♪

♪ But now, when Sodom treachery attempts our rights to mar ♪

♪ We hoist on high the Celestial Flag that bears a single star ♪

♪ Hurrah! Hurrah! ♪

♪ For harmony's rights, hurrah! ♪

♪ Hurrah for the Celestial Flag that bears a single star ♪

Booker groaned from the morning radio, forcing him to pull his head up from of bed. The music was starting to pierce his ears. It wasn't just the fact that he hated it. He really had a headache. The music was pounding his brain every time the chorus jumped in. He couldn't think with the thing playing.

♪ Hurrah! Hurrah! ♪

♪ For harmony's rights, hurrah! ♪

♪ We rally around the Celestial Flag that bears a single star ♪

♪ Hurrah! Hurrah! ♪

♪ For harmony's rights, hurrah! ♪

♪ We rally around the Celestial Flag that bears a single star ♪

♪ Then here's to our Celestia, strong we are and brave, ♪

♪ Like patriots of old we'll fight, our harmony to save; ♪

♪ And rather than submit to shame, to die we would prefer, ♪

♪ So cheer for the Celestial Flag that bears a single star. ♪

Booker moved his hoof to the source of the noise rupturing his eardrums. Reaching his hoof as far as he could, he knew the only way to silence it manually was to get off the bed. Booker scanned the room. Where is that damn thing? I might be able to turn it off with my horn. The radio wasn't too distant. He got a hold of the left dial and rotated it counter-clockwise.

"...making that a total of 34 police lost just two days ago."

Damn, wrong dial. Wait. Booker turned the volume up.

"Tarot Manor became the scene of a massacre by the Vox Equus. Reports are coming in that none other than the False Herder rallied up the servants of the Manor, convincing them to wage an all-out war against their masters. Spade, owner of Tarot Manor, was one of the many residential victims of the uprising who didn't survive. No other ponies in the Manor were spared by the Vox. Police arrived shortly after. The False Herder contributed to 12 of the 34 police officers killed. The villain was last seen maliciously murdering an unarmed civilian on top of the manor's rooftops, now to a summing spilled blood of 15 innocent Celestial citizens. Afterwards, news has been leaked saying that the colt has been shot down. Police have not given out any evidence saying so, and wish to not speak of the issue. Local residents are advised to stay indoors and report any suspicious activities. Now back to the music."

Booker dialed the volume nob off. His brain started piecing together how he got to a bedroom. The last thing I remembered I was running from the cops, a Vigor gave me wings to escape and... Booker raised his right hoof. As he recalled, his right wing was shot. Sure enough, the limb was bandaged. Now, the only missing piece of the puzzle was how the injury was treated. He couldn't remember it was himself doing so. He hazily looked back at his memories, getting the answer to who the mysterious helper, or helpers were. As much as Booker didn't want to believe it, it was the most logical answer. Whoever the two siblings are, Booker couldn't find them to be real, that perhaps there was still a reasonable explanation as to why two earth ponies are appearing and disappearing out of nowhere. Or maybe he was drugged to think that they were the ones whenever aid came. Whatever was the case, Booker needed to get his flank out of bed. Two days of sleep was plenty of rest to prepare getting one step closer to Monument Island.

While taking careful steps not to further injure his hoof, Booker limped to retrieve all the items on the dresser next to him: his pistol, the "Phoenix Feather" Vigor, the Taxman, his sky-hook, and any other loose papers he obtained on his ride to the lighthouse. He carefully paced his steps around the house, looking for a way out. No more delays, just one straight shot to the tower.

Booker proceeded downstairs too find that the building was also a bar. Though it was hours before opening, two bartenders stood ready to look after its only guest.

"And our visitor awakes," the colt said.

"Better be worth it too. Surgery is not exactly my expertise."

"But we have considered working in the medical field before. Seems it could have suited us well."

"Too late for that."

The mare held up a blue bottle and was blocking the doorway out. Booker snatched it.

"What is this?" Booker asked.

"Salts. Keep high amounts to use more Vigors."

"Staying replenished will come in handy," the colt added.

Booker observed the blue liquid around and back.

"So that's what Fink was talking about," Booker noted. "Thanks for not being obscure for...". His voice trailed off when he realized he was alone again. "...once. Did anypony tell you guys that vanishing mid-conversation is rude?" Booker knew shouting at the empty bar was useless. It gave him some comfort thinking they somehow got the message. He drank the Salts before heading back outside.

* * *

The tip of the sun peaked above the horizon, giving Celestia a light orange tone to begin the day. Booker looked around the back entrance of the bar. All that remained was the great backyard, a few square feet of turf and an optional plummet thousands of feet below. In the distance, multiple buildings somewhat close by, but nearly close enough to jump to. The skylines were transporting shipments to other parts of the city. Booker stood on the ledge, looking for a reason to not use "Phoenix Feather" again. He didn't want to try flying with a limping wing nor waste Salts due to laziness of an alternate route.

*Clank*

Booker tripped on his left hoof. The sky-hook was extracted. Booker got up and flicked his wrist for a few practice trials. Sometimes it worked, other times, it jammed. Stupid thing probably just needs oil. Then he remembered what the sky-hook was used for in the first place. And right there, were a perfectly good set of skyline rails. Booker stared at the inviting joyride.

"Well, nothing ventured, nothing gained."

Booker instinctively kept his eyes shut for the next bit. He eased his leg muscles back to ensure he made the jump. He sprung to an all-out canter.

"AAAAAA-"*Clank*

Booker opened his eyes to see that riding the thing was fairly easy. Most of the device did all the work for him. He just needed to jump in the general direction, and the rest could take him. Booker took a few moments to soak in the adrenaline. It felt somewhat like flying, only his body wasn't meant to soar at those speeds. A phoenix's body was meant to. All of this could only be expressed by panting laughs of relief that he was indeed, alive.

* * *

"Has the public got word of the tools at his disposal?"

"No sir. Only our troops know of the Vigors and weapons he possesses."

Sheriff Dusty was having a very long week. Even after doing his best to contain the situation 24/7, he couldn't find the False Herder's body. The police couldn't match any eye-witnesses's descriptions of him. The sketches would be more accurate if all of the onlookers took drugs. Thirdly, if the timing wasn't perfect enough, his wife divorced him. She was going to move districts along with his nine-year-old foal. What he needed now was tender, loving, coffee, heavy doses of coffee.

"Send a word to Fink & Fank about the little Vigor leak we have here. Powers in his hooves of that magnitude could be catastrophic. That is, if he's actually dead. I'm not buying it. We have arrangements for the mass burial of our 34 ponies?"

"This coming May."

"The public don't know about the Idlers either, right?"

"Not at all sir."

"Good. Keep it that way. Last thing I need is the press on my flank and the citizens knowing about Spade and his boys. We cannot afford our ponies to know about rebels inside their streets. It'll be chaos. For now, it is between you, me, and the prophet."

"But, we haven't told Clopstock yet sir."

"No. No we haven't. It doesn't matter. He knows. The prophet always knows. You're dismissed."

With a nod, Deputy Wright made his way out of Dusty's office. Dusty rolled his temples and rotated his chair to face the window. He inhaled a big breathe from the cigar in his mouth. I know you're still out there. It's only a matter of time before you show your head again. You won't slip this time.

Somepony was knocking on the door. Dusty realigned his chair. "What, you need to wait for my damn ass approval to open the door?"

The door sluggishly opened to reveal, Dimfeather, the recruit. "Um... I was told to give you news, sir?"

"Is that a question? I don't have all day."

"Well, I am reporting a sighting of a pony riding the skyline to Monument Island. It's likely the False Herder."

"And?"

"*gulp*. And we're waiting for your orders to shoot... sir?"

Dusty slammed his hooves on his desk. Dimfeather jumped. "What the hell do you need my orders for!? If you and your guys see a False Herder getting to Monument Island, you shoot the False Herder getting to Monument Island the moment you see his damn-"

*knockknockknock* "-Sir?" His Deputy Wright walked in again.

"What is it this time?"

"I've been asked to inform you that Dimfea..." The deputy just noticed Dimfeather in the office. He leaned towards Dimfeather to whisper into his ear. Dusty could only hear Dimfeather's responses.

"He...What!? No, you tell him...I...but that...you owe me."

"I will not have privatized conversations in my office! Now somepony tell me what happened!"

"Um," Dimfeather mumbled. "The False Herder is at Monument Island."

"What? Speak up son!"

"Um...The False Herder..." Wright nudged him."-reachedMonumentIsland."

"...". Dusty took the moment to turn to a boil. His cigar fell from his mouth. "WHAT!? You left pending my approval to shoot him, and in your absence, you LET.HIM.GO!?"

Dimfeather and Wright remained petrified. Dusty huffed so much, the movement of his shoulders from breathing looked like an exercise routine. In a relatively quick time, Dusty returned to his collected coolness.

"It's fine guys. It's fine. Now, we just need to surround the place."

Deputy Wright stiffened up again. "Understood sir."

Dimfeather looked at the two with a confused expression. "Sir, I know I ain't the one giving orders, but shouldn't we go in after him as well."

The two superiors exchanged a blank expression. "Dimfeather," Dusty said. "You don't know what's in that statue, do you?"

* * *

The police seemed to become a group of blockheads. Booker zipped by a squad on the skyline to Monument Island. They were hollering at him, probably shouting something about Booker getting down, but none of them shot. That was okay for soldiers not wanting to hurt civilians. What really gave Celestia's police the recognition of worst guardsponies was that that was their only line of defense. At Monument Island itself, nopony was there. It wasn't that Booker was complaining, but now that got his attention. The place was completely abandoned. It was so quiet. No civilians, no police, nothing. The eerie muted island emphasized the cliche squawking of the crows. The posted signs Booker approached nearer didn't make the place very reassuring. They signs had some kind of hazardous message, all different and mysterious as to why they exist where he stood. Booker saw the gate locked, but seeing the bars widespread enough for say a bird to fit through, he decided that a few seconds of "Phoenix Feather" wouldn't harm him. A transformation, a few bird-like hops, and he was good to go into the base of the statue.

Inside, even larger and crazier signs were posted. There were electrical hazards, quarantine borders, something that would only be used to hold a monster. Booker pulled out the photograph with the sign on it. She was no monster. She was a mare. Booker saw a small detail he missed before. Right above of the Alicorn, etched into the paper was her name.

"Elizabeth."

The building looked like years of scientific equipment and informational research papers were scattered all around the interior. Thick wires, photos and drawings of the mare herself. The place had every definition of creepy. They were experimenting with a mare, treating her like a beast. They were spending so much time researching, nopony would be so paranoid to produce this much research. All of the work was abandoned too. After all, Booker was alone. He decided to bypass all of the electric and scientific equipment and get her out. None of the data mattered to him and had nothing to do with the debt. Booker found the elevator and tapped the button as quickly as possible.

On the ride up, Booker shook his front right hoof. He wasn't limping since he got off the skyline. He decided to check the leg later.

* * *

Elizabeth sat on the balcony of the library overlooking the city. While most of the view was obstructed by clouds, it only further hyped her expectations of what hid behind them. That's all she could do at the time, look and hope. Even after her discovery of creating dimensional rifts, her power was limited. What she could open would not be enough to get more than a glimpse out of. She turned to face the bookshelves. She read every book in the library at least a dozen times. Time was always her enemy. She exploited every possible thing to do in the tower. Elizabeth turned to her stomach to tell she was hungry. She remembered that he left 10 minutes ago. He would be back any second with some food.

*Clank*

And there he is.

Elizabeth looked around. There was no sign of him. Instead, the chandelier snapped off. Something fell from the roof onto the library's floor. Elizabeth hesitantly made her way towards the fallen object. It looked like a dead pony. She remembered back in the early days when he used to feed her dead animals. It took a little while for him to figure that ponies are vegetarian. Elizabeth was bedazzled. She didn't think he'd do such a thing. she tapped the body. It groaned.

"AAAAAAAAH!" The pony is alive!? The figure shot up and ran towards Elizabeth.

"No. I'm not here to hurt you."

Elizabeth stopped in her tracks. She honestly did not know what she expected the mystery pony to do. Such a thing never happened in her life.

"Who are you?"

"My name is Dewitt. I've come to get you out of here." He was holding a key in front of him. Without hesitation, he went to the giant locked door, and opened it.

The sound of whistling dropped Elizabeth's heart before she could get escape. He's here. I need to buy some time. Elizabeth turned upwards and talked to the roof. "In a minute! I'm getting dressed!"

She turned to face Dewitt. "You have to get a head start out of here. I'll follow."

Dewitt nodded. He was about to lead the way out, but saw the room turned to red and a siren howled. The door sounded an alarm. Instead of following her plan, Dewitt grabbed Elizabeth's hoof to indicate that it's now or never. The two galloped their way around the interior of the building, heading back down the way he came. Meanwhile, the statue started rumbling and tearing apart.

"What the hell was that?" Dewitt asked.

"He's the one that's keeping me in my cage."

"I guess this calls for a little prison escape."

Dewitt picked up the pace, forcing Elizabeth to pick up her speed a few steps behind suit. The two made their way to an elevator. He already pressed the button. I can't believe it!, Elizabeth thought. I'm finally leaving this place. Then, she turned her head to see her bedroom.

Elizabeth pointed her hoof. "The see-through walls weren't there before."

"Actually," Dewitt said, "They were always there."

"What's that supposed to...". Elizabeth couldn't believe it. All her life, she was being watched, monitored. "Who would do something like that? What am I?"

"Both can be answered when we get off of this tower."

The elevator door slammed open. Instead of the elevator, he showed up. A giant mechanical portrayal based off of a real bird creature. He bashed his head, trying to break into the small room. Dewitt pulled out a pistol and shot a few times into him. They had little to no effect.

*Ding*

"Saved by the bell," Dewitt said. The elevator door fell on top of the creature, forcing the bird to retreat to the lower subfloors. Dewitt jumped across past the elevator door to the emergency stairs. "I'm not waiting for him to show up again. Best we get to highest ground as fast as possible."

The two dashed up onto the ceiling head of the Alicorn statue. Both were catching their breath, still trying to think.

"So," Elizabeth said. "What happens now."

"We can-"

The dialogue was interrupted by the bird. The platform was assaulted so much, it became unstable. Dewitt and Elizabeth were in free fall. He looked down at a skyline. Dewitt flicked his wrist, but the sky-hook didn't seem to budge open. He focused on grabbing Elizabeth first, then worrying about himself later. He wrapped his right leg around her body. Now, all that was needed was for the sky-hook to pop out. Come on. Come - *Click* -aha! Booker hit the skyline with the hook, and the two were off.

Despite the fact the two were on the railway, the bird would not give up. All around, loud wails and a few crashes showed that he was still hot on their trail. All Dewitt could do was hold onto her and hope they would make it out alive.

* * *

"I've done this to her." Celestia sat in the back of the Oasis. In front of her were an earth pony mare and stallion. Celestia put Twilight to sleep right when she ended got to the cliffhanger. Twilight was now twisting as if she were in a terrible nightmare she could not get up from. "Now, the rest of the story is all for her to experience."

"Quite fascinating," the colt said.

"Don't worry princess. I'm sure you know what it must feel like."

"Yes," Celestia frowned. "I wonder if she can forgive me."

"Did you forgive her?"

"No," Celestia confessed. "The day this happened to me was the day I lost it all. I must sacrifice for a better Equestria."

"And you succeeded-."

"-as will she."

"Why can't she just stay?" Celestia pleaded. "She has such a happy life here. The moment she arrived, every letter I received-"

"-was to show how more able she is to accept her true destiny," he interrupted.

"Thinking about her is a selfish thing to do."

"Her life-"

"-or Equestria's?"

"Heads."

"Tails."

"Equestria."

"Twilight."

With a blink of an eye, the two vanished. Twilight remained in that physical nightmarish state, unable to wake up. Celestia knew she wouldn't anytime soon. She laid down next to Twilight. Tears started to drip from her eyes.

"I'm sorry Twilight. I tried to stop it. I'm so sorry."

* * *

Twilight got unexpectedly drowsy when she was listening in on Booker's story. This was not natural for her. Twilight was more restless when studious than a caffeine addict with a 100 bits at a coffee shop. Something about the story though made Twilight feel familiar to it, like a child hearing a bedtime story for the thousandth time. She felt it was if it was supposed to cradle her in her sleep. It had nothing to do with the content. Knowing how a story goes can turn the narration into a lullaby. That should not have been the case. It was the first time she, and likely any Equestrian for a thousand years, has heard it since.

None of that mattered now. She was awake. As much as Twilight didn't want to admit it, she decided to confess to the princess she slept through Elizabeth's escape.

"Can you please rewind the story back a little? I want to go back to the part with Tarot Manor, just in case I forgot any details."

"Did I tell you about that? Must've slipped my tongue. We need to be on the move. It might take a little while to explain, Elizabeth."

Wait. That doesn't sound like her voice. Twilight opened her eyes to see she was laying on the sand. This is not the Oasis. She glared at her white coat and pink mane. This is not my body. In front of the beach's fire, sat a colt with an omega (Ω) cutie mark. That's not Princess Celestia.

"What's the matter Elizabeth? It looks like you've seen a ghost."

Author's Note:

Yes, this title is in another language (French) and no, I'm not doing anything of the sort for the remaining titles yet to be named.

The plot twist at the end was meant to be something I'd use later. Then I figured, what the hell. Might as well use it now. I'll cease tossing in plot twists left and right like an M. Night Shyamalan movie. A bit confused now? Understandable. I tried to clarify as much as I can without giving anything major away. I'll attempt to go a bit further in-depth for the following chapter.


Next week's fanfic forecast calls for light tempo. So expect a very calm chapter transitioning as we make our way into the middle portion of the fic.

Edit: Holy crap. Equestria LA is already this week. I completely forgot about it (seeing as I bought tickets last December). So, my week is booked. Expect delays for next chapter.