• Published 23rd Feb 2013
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Friendship is SHOWTIME!! - MangaKamen



A Kamen Rider Crossover Magic – a mysterious force in this world, and each creature possess magic within itself. A gift to many, but to a few, it is nothing but a curse. And when Twilight sees a new form of magic, she'll learn that life is

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Spell Three - It's... Showtime

I don’t have a dream. But, you know, I can protect dreams.
- Inui Takumi: Kamen Rider Faiz

TTTTT

Spell 3

It’s …Showtime!

TTTTTTT

Magic – a mysterious force in this world, capable of bending reality. At the beginning, magic was studied as progressively as a science, with as many kinds of magic as there are stars in the night’s sky. But as civilizations advanced, many forms of magic were forgotten. Time passes and in modern day, there are at least three confirmed types of magic, one used by each of the three kinds of ponies.

Magic of the Earth – A magical connection to the land itself, earth ponies are the best at using the land to produce fertile crops and to be able to have a natural affinity to the creatures that roam the land.

Magic of the Sky – To be one with the blue sky above and the clouds itself. Pegasus ponies possess this form of magic – Allowing them to manipulate the weather and ride the clouds. Although, other creatures are able to walk on clouds – Winged creatures such as Griffons and other animals blessed by the sky are able to achieve this.

And finally – Magic of the Stars – The final, and strongest form of magic documented, used to move even the Sun and Moon, unicorns and alicorns. Telekinesis, levitation, teleportation and several other variations of the forms of the magic have been reported, but this type of magic has the greatest variation and potential to it.

Twilight closed the book she was reading from with her hoof and continued to speak with her eyes closed. “Of course, there are other forms of magic – One of which I know about first hand. The magic of friendship, and it too has the ability to even surpass even the Magic of the Stars. It was even strong enough to…”

“Yeah, this is all riveting, but how long are you going to keep me floating up in the air like this?”

“Until I get some answers from you,” Twilight replied as she leered at the red dragon she was keeping afloat midair in her home. By taking the right route, Twilight was able to get the sleek dragon back to the library without any pony seeing her or him.

The work was worth it to get the weird dragon to finally answer her. “So, let’s start with an obvious question – Who exactly are you?”

“A dragon who can use magic,” The dragon answered holding up his left hand to look at the large ruby ring he had on. “Next question, please.”

“That answer doesn’t count!” Twilight scolded as she stomped her front hoof into the floor. “I meant what’s your name?”

The dragon took a deep breath and was about to speak, when all of a sudden several loud raps against the front door to the library caught both Twilight’s and the dragon’s attentions. Twilight sighed as she looked at the dragon, “I’m still expecting an answer from you.”

“Right,” The dragon replied as he breathed a few times on the large ring on his right hand, before he used his jacket to clean said ring.

With her magic still levitating the dragon behind her, Twilight moved said dragon so he’d be hidden from view from anypony’s view from the front door. With that done, Twilight pushed the door open and…

“Twilight!”

The lavender mare staggered back slightly as a rush of pink rushed to the doorway, the rosy red mare bouncing with each trot. “Oh thank Celestia you’re home! I need your help!”

“Pinkie!” Twilight gasped, almost losing control of her magical hold. “What’s wrong?!”

“Oh, it’s just terrible!” Pinkie sighed with her head lowered down slightly. “Ever since I handed out those flyers for that party, I’ve been looking for Haru. He said he had to do a few things to do before the party, but he said he’d be back about an hour before the party started, but its only half an hour before and he still hasn’t shown up! I hope he’s okay, but I can’t help but think he just walked away from the party I was going to throw him. We were going to do this huge reveal to everyone who showed up and they’d be so surprised to see him! They’d be all like, ‘OOOH’ and ‘AHHH’, and an ‘Eeep!’ because that’s what I think some ponies would be afraid of him, but he’s really just a nice guy! Sure, he’s a little scary, but he’s really, really cool and awesome and nice and funny and he likes doughnuts! Really, really likes them! I even managed to get the Cakes to make some doughnuts for the party, I even got his favorite kind of doughnut that he told me about, plain sugar! Isn’t that a little strange how he only seems to like plain sugar? I like them too, but I think chocolate doughnuts are the best, just like cake and…”

“Pinkie!” Twilight interrupted by placing her hoof on Pinkie’s mouth to stop her overly active friend’s rant. “Now, calmly, what’s the problem?”

When Twilight lowered her hoof, Pinkie took a deep breath and calmly began to explain, “I need your help! I need to find Haru, and you’re the first pony I thought of who can help me out with this!”

“Calm down, Pinkie,” Twilight pleaded, trying to settle her friend down. Although, in the short time she knew Pinkie Pie, that almost seemed like an impossible task. “I have a few things I need to do, but maybe I’ve seen him. What does this pony look like?”

“Well, he’s not really a pony,” Pinkie explained as she lifted her front hooves up. “But he’s tall, kinda twice my height.”

A number of colts could easily be twice Pinkie’s height.

“He’s red.”

That narrowed the list down a little bit.

“He usually stands on his hind legs and has this cool, yet smug attitude.”

Part of that wasn’t a physical description, but still, there were only a few individuals who fit the descriptions that Pinkie provided. But she couldn’t be talking about who Twilight thought she was talking about.

“Ooh! And he wears this old black jacket with a weird, gaudy belt buckle, even though he doesn’t wear pants.”

Okay, there was a small chance that Pinkie couldn’t be talking about…

“Oh yeah! He’s also, and this is a surprise for the party, so don’t tell anyone, but he’s a Dragon!”

No way Twilight could deny it any more…

“Hey Pinkie Pie!”

Twilight’s eyes widened as a large smile appeared on Pinkie’s face, and with the speed rivaling that of a certain blue pegasus streaming through the sky, the pink land pony sped past Twilight. In the process, Pinkie accidentally bumped into Twilight, sending the young mare spinning about with a loud yelp.

This had the unfortunate side effect of making Twilight lose her concentration and break the levitation spell she was using. So, that made the red dragon fall face first into the floor with a loud smack. “Ow.”

“OH WOW!” Pinkie Pie exclaimed with stars in her eyes as she hovered over the red dragon. “Twilight! You didn’t tell me you knew Haru! I get it, you were just trying to help him practice for his entrance into his own party to add for dramatic effect! That’s amazing! And it was so perfect! You even got into acting like you didn’t know him, didn’t you? Such commitment to the act! Ooh! You know what would be an amazing idea?! We should have Haru’s welcome party here! That way he won’t be late for his own party and we can use that dramatic entrance that he just pulled off! Although, I think he should probably work on the ending, landing on your face looks like it would be painful, so you should stay here while I get the supplies and make a sign so that people know to come on over to Twilight’s so we can make this party the best EVER!”

And just like that, Pinkie rushed out of the library, bumping into Twilight again and making her spin further into her house until she came to a slow stop, her vision slightly blurred due to the insane spins she was forced to endure. Even when she stopped spinning, Twilight stumbled about until she was near the mysterious, red dragon – Whose name was apparently Haru. “W-What just happened here?”

“I think your friend just made your house the central,” The dragon named Haru answered as he peeled his face off of the ground. “Is she always this – compulsive?”

“You have no idea,” Twilight answered as she struggled to gain her balance. “But, don’t think we’re done with my questions!”

Having gathered her composure, Twilight was about to ask more questions about the dragon, when suddenly, a loud yelp echoed throughout the library, making Twilight jump.

“AAAH! TWILIGHT! HELP!”

“Spike!” Twilight yelped as she galloped away.

It didn’t take long for the mare to reach where the cries of help originated, but when she stood in the doorway, the young unicorn stopped in her tracks at the sight before her

Spike was currently being held up in the air by the end of his tail and the front spine atop of his head. The culprits were the Garuda and Kraken familiars that the mysterious dragon had summoned earlier, while beneath Spike was the small Unicorn familiar, which seemed to laugh as it dodged Spike’s flailing arms and legs.

“Twilight! Help!” Spike called out as the Garuda and Kraken flew him closer towards the mare. “These guys aren’t playing fair!”

Twilight sighed, realizing that Haru had followed her to investigate the cry of help, “Hmm, I was wondering where those three went. I guess they like your little friend.”

TTTTTT

The Everfree Forest was a mysterious patch of land of Equestria where nature has a mind of its own. With the plants growing on their own, animals roam and hunt to survive and the weather itself moves of its own accord, it could be said the woods were cursed. To many ponies, this place is the worst place to go, and was often used in the past as a means of punishment for crimes against Equestria, and while there were numerous occasions that somepony would venture into the dangerous woods, it was usually a place to avoid.

So, it made the best place to go when running away from masked Wizards.

WHAM!

“GAH! NOT SO ROUGH!”

“Tough luck, Minotaur! You’re lucky that it was me and not another Phantom who came by! They would’ve left you to get destroyed!”

Minotaur was on the ground, his armored body covered with burns and cracks, some of the cracks now a little bigger from being tossed onto the ground haphazardly by the winged Phantom that saved him. The winged Phantom landed on the ground with a loud sigh, “Minotaur, all you had to do was awaken the Gate’s Phantom. How bad is your luck that you keep running into the guy?”

Not getting a completely verbal response, the winged Phantom ran one of her wings over Minotaur’s shoulder. “I’m just glad that we don’t have one of the higher up generals hanging over us.”

HISSSSSSSS

A chill ran down the winged Phantom’s spine, making her straighten up and turn to see that she and Minotaur were surrounded by a large variety of snakes, all of them just leering at them with glowing yellow eyes. The snakes’ very presence made the already heavy atmosphere of the Everfree Forest intensify.

“I will never understand this ‘bond’ you have between your little group,” A cold, daunted voice echoed through the woods.

The winged Phantom turned around to see the snakes that were behind her had slithered to the side, allowing a shadowed slim figure to sway into the clearing, using the shade from the trees to keep herself hidden from sight. But the voice and figure were enough for the winged Phantom to know who was addressing her.

And with one of her knees brought to the ground, the winged Phantom bowed towards the shadowed figure, “L-Lady Medusa! W-What brings you to the Everfree Forest, let alone Ponyville?”

Holding one of her hands to one of the snakes near the ground, Medusa allowed the creature to coil around her arm, “I’ve never felt the need for small talk, Harpie. So don’t bother trying to waste my time with it. Instead, waste your breath to answer why Minotaur is barely clinging onto life.”

Harpie kept her head lowered towards Medusa, gulping audibly before she answered, “L-Lady Medusa, please, forgive us. We were only following your orders to locate the two Gates you informed us about here in Ponyville. But, we ran into a snag.

“A Wizard got in our way. Please! Show mercy, Lady Medusa!”

For a few seconds, only the natural sounds of the Everfree Forest chimed through the air, adding to the tension that was only building up in the air. Then, Medusa finally spoke, “So, he’s finally revealed himself. Interesting.”

Blinking a few times, Harpie lifted her head up to see Medusa gently coddling the snake in her arm. “I-I’m sorry Lady Medusa, but, what did you say?”

“While there are Gates in this town,” Medusa answered nonchalantly as the snake coiled up around her neck. “The intention of sending your little group here was only to be used as a means to draw out one of the beings that have been interfering with our plans.

"Canterlot, Cloudsdale, Manehatten, and even out here a number of our Phantoms were reported missing. We had suspicions that it was an alternate being of magical ability that was the cause of it… And thanks to Minotaur here, we have confirmation at least out here there is such a being.”

“S-So, we were bait?” Harpie questioned followed with heavy, angry breathing.

“If you want to be blunt,” Medusa chimed back before she crossed her arms under her chest. “Then yes. You were all bait.”

With a loud screech, Harpie flew into the air with her mighty wings, and immediately dove towards Medusa with her talons flung forward.

But her attack was halted in midair as two phantasmal serpents flew from Medusa’s body and coiled around Harpie’s wings, forcing her to stop in midair. Medusa shook her head, “Tsk, tsk, Harpie. I would’ve thought a Phantom like you would know that emotions are only useful to us by using to awaken Phantoms. We must discard any emotions we have if we are to fulfill the goals.

“But if you insist on having such useless baggage, then maybe it would be easier to make you no longer an issue at all.”

The chill rolled down Harpie’s spine as the phantasmal snakes curled tighter around her wings, now starting to rack pain through her appendages.

And then, all of a sudden, the pain was gone and she was dropped to the ground. “Omph!”

“Just consider yourself lucky that we need all the Phantoms we have right now,” Medusa sighed as the phantom-like snakes withdrew back into her body. “So, you and your little group are going to continue your mission, awaken the Phantoms within the Gates you’ve been assigned.

“However, since I stepped into this town, I’ve realized that there are more Gates than initially speculated. So, more Phantoms will be assigned to this area to help you. Until you receive such orders saying otherwise, you are to continue with your two targets until they are awakened. Other Phantoms will have their own individual missions, and you will provide support.

“I suppose Minotaur is in no shape to do said mission, so, what you do with him is up to your discretion. Allow him to heal, leave him where he stands, or remove him from the picture completely.”

Harpie lifted her head up but didn’t say a word as Medusa walked past her, and the shadowed Phantom loomed over the injured Minotaur. “Although, if Phoenix was here, you know what he’d do.”

Harpie turned her head back and quickly ran in between Minotaur and Medusa.

“Once again, I fail to see the reason why you value this group of yours,” Medusa sighed as she spun around and began to walk away. “I expect some results soon, Harpie. You don’t want me to come back to waste my valuable time.”

And, as quickly as she appeared, Medusa slipped back into the shadows of the Everfree Forest, leaving Harpie to tend to the now barely conscious Minotaur. “…Don’t worry, I won’t let that happen.”

TTTTTT

Thirty minutes, that’s all it took for the mass of balloons, streamers, confetti and several party foods (most of which being a multitude of doughnuts) to completely take over the library and make it the center of entertainment for the day in Ponyville. Twilight tried to question Haru, but between trying to get Spike free from the weird jewel creatures, and Pinkie Pie coming and going to bring the party props to the library, Haru seemed to have the perfect excuse to avoid answering any question that the unicorn had whether it was to help Pinkie or to get his crystal familiars to drop Spike.

And then there was the party, just like the first day that Twilight was in Ponyville, her residence was the epicenter of Pinkie’s positively popular parties. Many of the residents of Ponyville were crowded in the main lobby, some of them dancing to the music that Pinkie had selected (joyful tune that had a number of fun guitar rifts), others enjoying the snacks and some just curious who the party was actually for.

Twilight was near one of the walls, trying to stay away from the party so she wouldn’t get absorbed into the festivities. After all, what was stopping Haru from walking out from the party halfway through it and avoid her questions again?

Well, due to the fact that Haru was surrounded by many ponies, each of them asking him questions and seeing if he wasn’t just an elaborate costume. ‘He certainly doesn’t seem too shy about answering questions now.’

“Come on Twilight!” Pinkie Pie announced before she pulled the string of a party popper near her friend’s ear, followed up with a loud bang of noise and confetti that caused Twilight to slip slightly out of surprise. “It’s a party! Lighten up! Almost everypony’s here! You can’t have a frown at a party like this, it’s like rule number one of all parties!”

“Sorry Pinkie,” Twilight sighed as she used her hoof to massage the ear that took the noisy abuse. “It’s just that I was hoping to ask Haru a few questions.”

“Ooh, what kind of questions?” Pinkie asked as she leaned closer to Twilight. “He told me a lotta stuff when I met Haru last night! He’s a real fun guy!”

“Like what?” Twilight questioned.

“Well, he didn’t really tell me much,” Pinkie admitted with a bright smile on her face. “But you should’ve seen the tricks he did! He could float, he was able to transform, ooh! And those little creatures he summoned were so cute!”

‘I guess I was a little star struck when I saw him use those spells,’ Twilight thought to herself.

“Oh you have gotta be joshing me!”

Both Twilight and Pinkie looked up to see a familiar blue pegasus floating above them both, her hooves crossed over her chest in annoyance. “Pinkie! You didn’t tell me that the guy this party was for was that jerk!”

“He’s not a jerk, he’s a dragon, Rainbow Dash,” Pinkie corrected.

“Yeah, well, I think he’s both,” Rainbow countered with a roll of her eyes. “Besides, look at him, he acts like he’s the best of the best, everyone here knows that I’m the only one who gets to act like that!”

“Aw come on, it’s his welcome party!” Pinkie replied. “So it’s natural for him to be in the limelight!”

“I still don’t like him,” Rainbow muttered under her breath. “Just cause he’s a dragon and he’s got that freaky ability, he thinks he’s all that!”

“Can’t you both be awesome?” Pinkie asked before she hummed an energetic tune. “You’re a blue streak in the sky, too fast for the naked eye! Rainbow Dash, you can really move! Dash, you’ve got an attitude! Ponies look out when you storm through, and we don’t doubt what you can do.”

Rainbow Dash smirked as she landed on the ground next to her two friends. “Yeah! Take away that little trick of his and I doubt he’s as awesome as me! I’m positive I’m over a hundred times cooler than that bag of scales!”

“Yup, yup!” Pinkie Pie cheered before she wrapped one of her hooves around Twilight. “Now that we’ve got Rainbow in the party mood, it’s time for you to get into it as well!”

“As much as I would love to, Pinkie,” Twilight sighed looking at Haru who was munching on a plain sugar doughnut near the snack table. “I can’t enjoy the party with all the questions I’ve got in my head.”

Pinkie rubbed her chin before she trotted through the party’s crowd, leaving Rainbow Dash and Twilight to watch the pink earth pony head towards the doughnut munching dragon. When Pinkie approached the dragon, Haru pulled his doughnut from his mouth and the two seemed to chat for a few seconds before Pinkie trotted back to her two friends.

“Alrighty Twily! Haru says he’ll answer your questions right now outside,” Pinkie reported as she bounced a few times in place.

“Wait, what?” Twilight questioned.

A few minutes later outside the Golden Oaks Library, Haru was leaning up against the tree that the library was made out of while Twilight, Rainbow Dash and Pinkie were standing around him. “Not that I mind, but why are you two listening in on this?”

“It’s always good to learn about any competition,” Rainbow Dash explained as she pointed a hoof at Haru. “If I learn how you pulled that little teleportation scheme, then I can use that to prove how awesome I am.”

“And I just wanna hear some neat stories!” Pinkie Pie added.

Haru blinked a few times before he shrugged his shoulders. “That’s fine, any reason would’ve worked, even if you didn’t have a reason.”

“Alright, so who exactly are you?” Twilight asked. “Pinkie says your name’s Haru, but the name isn’t something I expected from a Dragon.”

“And you’re right,” Haru replied as he curled slightly to give himself a bit of a bow towards the young mares, “Souma, Haruto Souma is my real name. But, if you’d like, Haru, that’s how most ponies referred to me as.”

“That’s still a weird name,” Rainbow Dash pointed out.

Haru lowered his head slightly, “Yes well, I’m not exactly from this country, I was born in another country but my family moved over here afterwards. So, I was stuck with the name. So, what’s your next question? How did I get so handsome?”

“Alright, stop trying to change the subject,” Twilight scolded, stomping one of her hoofs against the hard wooden floor. “I want to know how you’re able to use magic!”

“All creatures possess the ability to use magic,” Haru answered with a shrug of his shoulders. “You explained that to me in that little lecture of yours a while ago. So, is it so hard to believe that dragons can use magic?”

“Not the kind of magic I saw you use!” Twilight retorted, waving her hoof at the cocky dragon. “Now you’re just dodging the question!”

Haru sighed as he reached into the jacket and held up one of the rings he had on his claws a few times. Holding the ring between his claws, Haru held it towards Twilight, “I can only access my magic by using specific rings. This is the ring I used before in order to escape from you and your hotheaded friend.”

“Hey!” Rainbow Dash barked.

Using her magic to take the ring from Haru’s claws, Twilight looked at the ring closely with Pinkie Pie and Rainbow Dash looking over her. Twilight noted that the silver ring had large orange jewel inside of the metal. Atop of the ring was a very noticeable carving in the jewel, showing a simple dragon head emerging from a circle. “This is the source of your magic?”

“Ooh! I love the design of it!” Pinkie Pie chimed in as she took the ring and held it in the sunlight above her.

Haru leaned back once more on the tree and lifted up his right claw, the red ring on his claws gleaming, “Like you said, every living creature has magic within them, these rings allow me to manifest said magic within me. Each ring allows me to use the magic within in a different manner.”

“So, they’re conductors to refine the magic,” Twilight muttered to herself as her horn glowed brightly, making a quill pen and notepad pop in front of her. Quickly, the quill pen furiously began to scribble down a lot of information. “That’s amazing! From what you’re saying, these very rings could change the very basis of magic studies!”

“And just like that, the bookworm has appeared,” Rainbow sighed.

“Before you get too excited,” Haru interrupted with a small bead of sweat rolling down the side of his head. “I should point out that unless the rings are used in conjunction with certain individuals, they won’t work for anyone.”

Haru tapped against his weird belt buckled a few times, “If someone wears the ring, I can transfer my magical energy to them and the spell will work. It just needs to be in close proximity.”

“Fascinating!” Twilight squealed as the quill moved even faster on the paper. “So far, I’ve seen spells for teleportation, duplication, even a spell that can make you into a giant! What other forms of magic do you have?”

“Wait, a giant?!” Rainbow Dash exclaimed.

“Duplication? Oooh! I wish I could do that!” Pinkie announced with a large smile. “If I could then I wouldn’t be able to miss out on any of the fun in Ponyville! I could even spread cheer to everyone too!”

“I think one Pinkie Pie is more than enough of Ponyville to handle,” Rainbow Dash pointed out with a roll of her eyes.

Haru chuckled, “You’ve got some nice friends here, Twilight. But in response to your question, that’s one I can’t answer.”

“And why’s that?” Twilight asked looking up from her notepad. “Are they the only spells you know? Or are there limited versions of these rings?”

“Nope to both,” Haru answered. “The reason I can’t answer is because I need to have a few aces up my sleeve.”

“I see,” Twilight sighed, not fully believing in that answer. “You mind telling me why that is?”

“Ya know,” Haru sighed as he pocketed his claws. “When most ponies get attacked by a large, weird monster with odd magic, they usually question what in the world just attacked them.”

Twilight blushed a little bit at Haru’s point. The magic using dragon did have a point, but the prospect of a foreign type of magic was too much for the young mare to focus. “Right, so those monsters, you called them Phantoms, right? I remember the term in a book I read, but…”

“Whoa, whoa, whoa,” Rainbow Dash interrupted as she stepped in between Haru and Twilight. “I think you may have forgotten to mention that when you were telling me what happened!”

“Are you alright Twilight?” Pinkie asked as she ran around her unicorn friend, looking all over Twilight’s body. “You didn’t get a scuff or bruise or cut or bump did you?! Or even worse - A wet willie!?”

“Girls! I’m fine!” Twilight croaked slightly as she waved her hooves in front of her. “I… I’m sorry for not telling you Rainbow Dash, but I didn’t want anyone to worry.

“Uh, you were saying Haru?”

“Beings with high levels are magic are what Phantoms call Gates,” Haru explained as he picked up the ring that Pinkie Pie dropped. “Phantoms use the Gates to create a mass of magic, from that mass, Phantoms are born.”

“I see,” Twilight mused with a slightly worried look on her face. She knew of her talents with magic, even if she didn’t want to admit it, the facts that she was a unicorn and Princess Celestia’s student would probably make her a perfect example of a Gate. “So, how is the mass of magic obtained? Is it extracted by Phantoms? I noticed that my magic was acting strange when that minotaur Phantom attacked.”

“Extracted?” Haru muttered with his eyes slightly narrowed. “… No, I wish it was.”

The dragon took a deep breath, for a few moments he remained silent before he lifted his head up and stared directly at the three mares. He opened his mouth, but hesitated.

“What’s wrong Haru?” Pinkie asked as she leaned towards the dragon.

“Phantoms are born,” Haru sighed with his clawed hand at his eyes. “At the expense of the Gate’s life.”

If it wasn’t for the lively music that was pumping out of the library, you could hear a pin bounce off of a wooden floor. All three of the mares just looked at Haru as he stood up straight.

“What?” Twilight gasped with her hooves brought up to her mouth. “You mean I was…”

“Phantoms have a unique, magical aura,” Haru continued, unfazed by the mare’s reactions. “If a Gate experiences true despair in the presence of a Phantom, that aura will awaken the Gate’s inner Phantom.

“Have you ever seen a butterfly emerge from a cocoon? It’s rather similar in the process – The Gate acts as the cocoon for a Phantom, and the Phantom destroys the Gate in the process of awakening, leaving only pieces of their former shell behind.”

Twilight’s jaw dropped when she heard that, if what Haru was saying was true, then that meant any unicorn with strong enough magical abilities would be targeted by these monsters just to create more monsters. ‘Does that mean that even Princess Celestia could be targeted?’

“Now wait just a minute here!” Rainbow Dash snapped as she stomped up to the magic-using dragon. “I haven’t heard of these Phantoms before! And if these sorts of monsters were going around Equestria, I think I would’ve at least heard of rumors about them!”

“Until six and a half months ago, I didn’t know about them either,” Haru admitted with his right hand fitting into his pocket. “But I learned the hard way that they do exist, and if you ask your friend Twilight, or even her dragon scribe, then you’ll learn that they do exist.”

“What are you do mean by ‘the hard way’?” Twilight asked. “Was someone close to you a Gate?”

Haru didn’t reply, instead he lifted his right hand from his pocket to reveal that the very same ring that he had shown the girls was back on his claws. “Miss Pinkie, I have to say, it was a nice party, and thank you for going through all the trouble for setting it up for me.”

Haru slid his right hand over his belt buckle, making the odd fashion accessory glow brightly, “CONNECT – PLEASE!”

The red runic energy popped behind Haru, and quickly he began to step through it, “But I think this is when I must bid you all adieu.”

Before the mares could react, Haru fully stepped through the circle, with the circle disappearing behind him.

“Wait Haru!” Twilight called out.

… But it was too late, Haru and his magical charms were gone.

TTTTTTT

Meanwhile, as the party in Ponyville was roaring on, outside the town was a large apple orchard, with a near countless trees that surrounded a large farm. On one of the hills that overlooked the mass of trees, two ponies gazed over the orchard.

One of the ponies was a young, orange earth mare with a blonde mane that ended with a red band to give it a tailed look, which matched her tail. Atop of her head was a well-worn cowboy hat which signified her southern roots. Her cutie mark was a trio of bright red apples. “Boy howdy, Ah got my work cut out fer me. That there is the biggest bump a crop of apples that Ah’ve ever laid eyes on.”

“Eeyup,” the other pony, a slightly large red stallion spoke calmly. He was a big earth pony colt with a mid-length orange mane, a cropped tail and a yoke around his neck. His mark was a sliced in half green apple, and the other thing to note about the colt was that around his torso were a few bandages. “Too big fer you to handle on yer own.”

“C’mon big brother!” the southern pony said as she leaned closer to her older brother. “Ya need to rest up and get yerself better! I haven’t met an apple orchard I haven’t met yet that I couldn’t handle!”

As she said that, the orange mare accidentally poked her front hoof into bandaged area on the colt. The colt’s eye widened as he brought up one of his hind legs to cover the bandages.

The mare chuckled sheepishly as she drew back slightly, “Oops, sorry.”

Trying to clear the air, the mare took a steps forward to look at all of the trees, “Ah’ll take a bite outta this job by day’s end.”

“Biting off more than ya can chew,” the colt pointed out. “Is just what I’m afraid of.”

“Are ya saying my mouth is making promises my legs can’t keep?” the mare asked as the colt rolled his eyes.

“Eeyup.”

“Why of all the…” The mare growled before she stomp a hoof into the ground. That’s when she got into the larger colt’s face, staring down the larger pony. “This is yer sister Applejack, remember?! The loyalist and most dependable of ponies!”

“But still only one pony,” the colt replied, his gaze turning away. “And one pony plus hundreds of apple trees just doesn’t add up.”

“Don’t be using yer fancy mathematics to muddle the issue!” Applejack retorted, stepping back to wave a hoof at her brother. “Ya’ll don’t think I can do this, don’t ya Big Macintosh?”

Big Macintosh blinked a few times, “Eeyup. I don’t question yer skills, but I’m just trying to make sure ya’ll don’t overwhelm yerself.”

“Well, what choice do we have?” Applejack questioned. “We can’t have Granny working like this with her hip, and Applebloom just ain’t strong enough to do this.”

“That’s why I took the liberty of hiring some part time help,” Big Macintosh stated.

Applejack’s jaw was dropped at the bomb that her older brother, “Ya did what?!”

“We don’t have much of a choice,” Big Macintosh replied as his attention was turned to the dirt road that ran between the orchard. “The colt himself isn’t working fer much, and I’d be able to rest easier if I knew somepony would be out here with you helping.”

Applejack just stood there with narrowed eyes at her older brother, who only kept his eyes out on the road. “In fact, here he comes right now.”

Turning her attention towards the dirt road, Applejack saw the hired help trotting towards the two. The pony in question was a slim, brown colt with a short fancy black mane. At his flank was a mark that depicted a vine of grapes.

All Applejack saw was a prissy pony trotting up to the two, what in the world was Big Mac thinking?!

When the colt finally reached the two siblings, he stopped and bowed slightly towards Applejack, “Bonne journée, madame. Je suis Pierre Escargot. Votre frère Big Macintosh m'a engagé pour vous aider dans votre entreprise au cours de pomme buck saison. ”

Applejack blinked a few times at the weird colt before she narrowed her gaze, “Dang it boy, don’t be talkin’ fancy to me! Ah don’t know where ya’ll come from, but here we speak Equish!”

“My apologies madame,” the colt coughed slightly. “Moi was simply introducing moi’s self. Pierre Escargot at your service. Moi hopes moi came at ze desired time, Mousier Macintosh.”

“Eeyup,” Big Macintosh replied as he began to turn around and trot away. “Now, I’ll be heading back in to get some rest. I hope I don’t need to tell you little sister that he’s here to help ya’ll. We are paying him.”

Applejack leered daggers at Pierre, making the French-speaking pony smile sheepishly. “Now ya’ll listen here, Mister Fancy Speak. Ah know mah Big Brother hired ya’ll to help, but Ah can do this job perfectly fine by myself! So, here’s what ya’ll be doing, Ah’ll be bucking them apples from the trees, and ya’ll can gather them apples.

“Hope yer ready to get yer hooves dirty.”

“Madame, moi worked on a vineyard during moi’s youz,” Pierre admitted. “Moi is no stranger to hard work wiz produce.”

“… Fine,” Applejack huffed as she trotted towards the orchard. “Then let’s get started then, no need to keep jawing it up around here.”

“Oui, oui!” Pierre chuckled as his eyes glowed slightly bright orange for a split second before he trotted after Applejack. “Moi shall get to work immediately.”

TTTTTTT

Outside Ponyville, hidden amongst a number of trees, Haru sighed as he began to set up his new campsite. As he fixed up his tent, Haru sighed with a roll of his eyes before he turned back to Ponyville that was in the distance.

There was a small twinge of guilt coursing through his mind, ‘Maybe I shouldn’t have run from the mares. At least Twilight deserved some answers.’

Kicking his sleeping bag to the side, Haru sighed before he sat down on a hallowed out log. ‘No Haru, you did the right thing. They don’t need to be more involved in this any more than they have already.

‘… Everyone needs hope, and someone needs to protect that hope, even if that someone needs to sacrifice everything to protect that hope.’

TBC

Author's Note:

MangaKamen: Yeah, don't expect updates this soon, but this chapter is more like an exposition, and with the way things have been going for me over the last week, I just felt like posting this. Prepare to wait a while before the next chapter, I mean it this time!

On another note, please recommend this story to people! I made a bet with the guy who did my avatar and cover art for the story that if I could get enough people to like this story, he'd actually draw a comic for it! COMICS! THAT'D BE KIIIIIIIIIIIIIIITAAAAAAA!

The only downside is, I can't tell you guys how many people we need to like this story to convince him. He's kinda being a little... Meh, like that. But hey, its worth it, don't ya think?

So, yeah, recommend to many people so we can get Wizard/MLP Comic!

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