• Published 5th Apr 2013
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Ever After - Mixer



The sequel to the Mixer Chronicles

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Let the Battle Begin

“We’re not seriously going to do this are we?” Flit complained.

“It’s our best plan so far,” Breeze countered.

“Our best plan involves treking down a mountain?” Flit lamented.

“Would you rather be caught?” Chrysalis shot back.

Flit bit back a retort and continued to trudge through the snow.

After approaching the Crystal Empire, Breeze and his friends, Flit, Treble, Candy, and Violet, along with Chrysalis, had landed the airship high on a mountain to avoid being detected.

As it stood, their plan was to make their way down the mountain and into a position where they could wait until the fighting started to get into the city.

“Do you have the Elements?” Treble whispered to Breeze.

“Yeah, I have them,” he replied.

“I just hope we can find the other bearers quickly,” Treble said.

“Me too...”
--

A single shade whisked its way into the throne room of the Crystal Palace.

“Sir, there is a lone airship approaching from the south. It appears to bear the mark of the Princesses.”

“How foolish of them to think that a single airship will be enough to stop an army,” Darkstar said, getting up from the throne.

“What do you wish us to do?” the shade asked.

“I want you to wait until they are over the city boundary, then overwhelm them. And bring the Princesses to me. All of them.” he ordered, walking to the balcony to see the black speck in the sky.

“And what about us?” Crystal, Chrysalis’ daughter and replacement, asked.

“I want your changeling spread throughout the city. If they are attempting to sneak in any ponies from that airship, I want them found and restrained,” Darkstar commanded.

The queen bowed and took her leave, leaving Darkstar to stare out on the balcony alone.

“What game are you playing...?”
--

“There is little time left before we reach the city,” Quicksilver called from the wheelhouse of the Lunar Guard airship.

“Then there is little time to prepare,” Celestia said.

She turned to face the gathered ponies on the airship.

Soulless, hanging back by the edge of the crowd. Red and Chaotic, standing side by side at the front of the group. The Knights of the Everfree: Solid Gear, Dream Dasher, and Lightning Shaker, standing by Luna and Sombra. Elyl and Violet Runner, on either side of the crowd. And finally, Celestia herself, who was standing with her back towards the city, beside Twilight.

“As you all know, the fate of Equestria lies in the success of our mission. I know that none of you need any more words than that, but know that I have faith, in all of you, and I know, that none of us, will falter,” Celestia said, addressing the troops.

“And I know it doesn’t mean much from me, but I believe in all of you too,” Twilight added.

Luna stepped forward and turned to add her piece.

“Thank you all for undertaking this mission. I am glad to stand beside you in dealing with my son,” she stated.

“I am honored to stand by you princess,” Red said.

“As am I,” Chaotic added.

“All of us are,” Lightning chimed in.

“We are fast approaching the city, so prepare yourselves, and may fortune favor us all,” Celestia said, concluding the speech.
--

Char opened her eyes and stretched.

She had fallen asleep on the couch in the strange house, and now she could hear commotion outside.

She could hear the sounds of hooves as they headed past the house. More than she had heard before.

After a minute, the hoovesteps quieted and it was eerily silent.

Char was worried that she had been discovered, and barely even breathed, lest the mere sound give her away.

It seemed like an eternity in silence, then there was a dull boom, followed a few seconds later by an explosion.

Char huddled into the couch, afraid for her life as another boom came, followed again by an explosion.

There was a third, followed by the sound of screaming and splintering wood.

A fourth boom came, but before the explosion came, Char heard something burst through the door and land on the floor.

The explosion came almost immediately, sending Char’s ears ringing, and flecks of dirt and grit flying through the door.

Char, covered her ringing ears as a fifth shot detonated farther away.

“Hey, who are you?” the accusatory question came through the din, albeit somewhat distorted.

Char didn’t respond, only cringed on the couch with her eyes shut tight and her hooves covering her ears.

Something hard poked her in the side and Char let out a small yelp and almost jumped off the couch.

“I said, who are you?!” the shout came clearly.

“Help me!” Char cried, cowing farther into the couch.

Whoever, or whatever, it was pried her off the couch and onto the floor, jamming something in Char’s face.

Char tried to cover her face, defenseless to her assailant.

“My name is Char. Please help me get away from here!” she cried, tears forming in her still tightly shut eyes.

“You’re coming with me,” the voice said gruffly, grabbing the now sniffling zebra and dragging her towards the door.

The entity that dragged her out of the house began to run, heading away from the bombardment that was still going on.

Long before they stopped, Char had broken into tears, and was sobbing softly, both because of her helplessness, and the auditory assault of the cannon fire.

Char was thrown to the ground, laying in a pile of fur and terror.

“Who is this?” A commanding voice asked.

“I found her in hiding in a house just after the barrage started.

“And she offered no resistance?” the commanding voice asked.

“None whatsoever. I think a foal would have put up more of a fight,” the voice that had carried Char said.

“Return to the battle, if you find anymore, bring them here,” the superior voice ordered.

“Yes my queen,” the voice said.

“Queen?” Char sniffled.

“I am Queen Crystal, the leader of Darkstar’s changelings,” she said with contempt at her masters name.

“W-what?” Char stammered.

“Who are you?” Crystal demanded.

“I-I’m Char. Please, don’t hurt me. I only want to go back home,” she pleaded.

“Char? And why are you here if you wish to go home?” Crystal inquired.

“B-because, I was taken away by a manticore, then I was forced to come here, and then there were explosions...” Char trailed off, almost on the verge of tears again.

“Taken by a manticore?” the queen asked incredulously.

“Y-yes. A pony commanding a manticore, and a bunny. They took me away from the Everfree Forest,” Char explained.

“A pony commanding... so you’re one of the Elements, aren’t you?” Crystal asked.

“What? Elements? I don’t know what you’re talking about,” Char said.

“The Elements of Harmony. Darkstar would want me to bring you to him so he could execute you...” Crystal said.

“Execute?!” Char wailed.

Crystal was silent for a moment, contemplating her course of action.

“You’re coming with me,” she said finally.

Char didn’t respond, now sobbing on the floor.

Darkstar is going to pay. Crystal thought to herself as she dragged the weeping zebra along.
--

“We’ve got to hurry, they’ve already started,” Breeze said, seeing the puffs of smoke let off from each cannon round as the airship got in range of the city.

“But we’re still way up on the mountain,” Flit said.

“I have an idea!” Violet called.

“What?” Breeze asked.

Violet’s answer was given in the form of a tackle that sent them, along with Treble and Flit, tumbling down the mountain.

Soon enough, they were starting to gather snow and were quickly becoming trapped together in a large snowball.

While Breeze, Treble, and Flit were all shouting their heads off, Violet was giggling and laughing the whole way down, all the way up until their snow boulder hit the side of a house.

“Let’s go again!” she cheered, poking her head out from the newly formed snow bank.

“Never... again...” Flit said, tumbling out of the snow.

“Well, it did get us down the mountain,” Breeze said, shaking the snow out of his coat.

"Yeah, but I don’t think a giant snowball is considered subtle,” Treble said, climbing out of the snow pile.

“Then we should probably move now,” Breeze said, looking around for a place to run.

“Yeah, let’s go,” Flit said, shaking his head.

The four of them bolted down the street towards a building with a mug for a sign.

“Quick, let’s hide in here,” Treble said, ducking into the door.

He was met promptly by a hoof to the face.

“Oh! Sorry, thought it might have been one of those hicks,” a pony said, helping Treble up.

“Ow...” Treble said, rubbing his jaw.

“What was that all about?” Breeze asked, stepping through the door with Flit and Violet.

Flit barely got through the door before a bottle flew at his face.

He just barely ducked the bottle. “What is it with you ponies and hitting us?”

“What’s that thing doing here?” the bartender asked in a disgusted tone.

“He’s our friend, and he’s one of the bearers of the Elements of Harmony,” Breeze said.

“He’s a changeling. A bug,” the bartender snorted.

“Hey, how do we know you’re not bugs too?” one of the ponies asked.

“Why are you ponies so mean?” Violet asked. “We’re just trying to find someplace to hide.”

“In case you hadn’t noticed, the bugs helped to take over the city!” one of the patrons snapped.

“Listen, we don’t want a fight,” Breeze said.

One of the patrons grabbed a broken chair leg and started moving towards the group, “Well you came to the wrong place.”
--

As soon as they were in range of the city, Quicksilver had begun to man the cannon, and shower the area in cannon fire.

“Soulless, go!” Celestia called.

The black unicorn didn’t say a word, only disappeared and teleported to the ground below.

A few more rounds left the cannon as they drew closer.

“Lightning, Dasher, go!” she called.

Lightning carried his friend to the ground below.

A few more rounds.

“Red!”

The pegasus saluted and took off towards the left of the ship.

“Chaotic!”

The sandy unicorn nodded and teleported below.

“Elyl, I will teleport you down myself,” she said.

The white earth pony nodded before disappearing in a flash of golden energy.

“That just leaves us,” Luna said, looking on as shades began to rise to meet the airship.

“Twilight, you will hold them off. This ship must not fall,” Celestia commanded.

Twilight nodded and began to unleash a hail of magic bolts upon the shades.

“Let’s go,” Sombra said, taking a running jump off of the bow of the airship.

“You do have quite the husband...” Celestia said.

“I know,” Lune replied, taking off after him.

Celestia watched her sister descend before taking off herself for the palace.
--

Soulless, being able to roam about invisibly, had no trouble weaving his way closer to the palace.

“Hey pipsqueak,” a voice said from the shadows.

Dhanthas’ form appeared to melt out of the shadows as he stood to block Soulless.

Soulless, dropped his invisibility and unsheathed his blades. “Ready to die this time?”

Dhanthas let out a laugh. “Oh, I’m not going to be dying this time.

He laughed as two batlike wings sprouted from his shoulders, and a horn grew on his head.

“Well, this makes things interesting...” Soulless said, taking a step back.

“And that isn’t even the best part...” Dhanthas said as he produced a large black scythe.

“Oh, is that all?” Soulless questioned, preparing to strike.

In an instant, he teleported behind Dhanthas and buried his blades into the shade’s back.
Dhanthas laughed, “I think that actually tickled.

He swung the scythe around with magic, attempting to take his attacker’s head from his shoulders, but Soulless was faster, and teleported out of the way.

“Now this is going to be interesting...”
--

Lightning and Dasher had been met almost immediately by a considerably force of shades.

“This is going to be the greatest battle ever!” Dasher shouted as he knocked three shades away.

“Yeah, but it’s also going to be the toughest,” Lightning said, coming down on a shade from the air.

“Yeah, but when we win, we’ll be heroes!” Dasher said, bucking a shade to the ground.

“Wait, what’s that?” Lightning asked, hovering above the crowd of shades.

A navy blue form was plowing it’s way through the shades, tossing aside those that didn’t move aside quickly enough.

“Uh, Dasher?”

“What?” Dasher asked, pounding another Shand into submission.

“I think that Dark Flame guy’s headed this way.”

“Good, I want a rematch.”

“You!” Dark Flame roared, throwing a changeling at Dasher.

Dasher knocked the flying shade away and turned to face Dark Flame.

“Where is the one that killed Red Bow and Marksman?” Dark Flame bellowed.

“Huh?” Lightning questioned. “Do you know who they are?”

“Nope,” Dasher answered.

Dark Flame let out another roar and charged towards them.
--

Elyl shook his head after the teleportation.

“Where am I?” he asked out loud looking around.

He saw that he was on the other side of the palace from the airship.

From his position, he could see Celestia heading towards the palace, while the airship let off volleys of magic to repel the attackers.

He guessed that he was teleported so far to have an advantage, being on the other side of the city from the fighting.

He readied himself, and began to run towards the palace at full speed.

Unfortunately, he was soon met by a blockade of shades blocking the road.

“Look what we have here,” one of the shades said, stepping out from the formation.

Elyl recognized the stallion from the battle of Van Hoover. The only difference now was that he had burn marks across his side.

“You were one of the defenders at Van Hoover,” the brown stallion called.

Elyl thought about turning and running, but one quick look behind him showed that another line of shades had boxed him in.

“Yes, I was,” Elyl called back, having few other options.

“Can we hurry this up Enfield?” a stallion called from the line behind Elyl.

Elyl turned to see that the other looked similar to Enfield, except instead of a burn, one of his ears had a notch missing from it.

“Spearhead, our orders are to stop the attackers, but I’m going to take some time with this one,” Enfield called back.

Spearhead groaned, “Fine.”

“This doesn’t look good...” Elyl breathed.
--

Applejack had left the throne room as soon as she was allowed, and as soon as she was sure she was far enough away, she punched the nearest wall.

“What’s wrong?” Frost asked.

“What’s wrong? What’s wrong?! Darkstar’s a monster, that’s what’s wrong!” Applejack snapped.

“Geez...” Frost said, backing off a little.

“You don’t get it, do you?” Applejack accused.

“No, I don’t,” Frost said plainly.

Applejack turned away.

“He sent them on a suicide mission...” Braeburn said.

“What?” Frost asked.

“Darkstar, he sent the other elements to fight that golem thing, knowing full well that they would be killed...” he explained.

“Oh...” Frost said, looking back towards Applejack, who was leaning against the wall.

“He’ll pay for this...” Applejack said, punching the wall again.

“Yes, he will,” Crystal said, walking up to the posse.

Applejack turned to look at her, and saw a crying zebra being dragged behind her.

“Huh?” Applejack questioned.

“Darkstar is going to pay, and we’re going to help. I want you to take her, and search for any others,” Crystal said.

“Do you mean go looking for the attackers?” Frost asked.

“No, you will be ‘escorting’ the prisoner, and at the same time, looking for more infiltrators. I suggest looking in the district that the changelings occupied. It is mostly unpopulated, and as such easy to sneak in to,” Crystal finished, striding away.

“Where are you going?” Frost asked.

“To check on something,” she called over her shoulder.
--

“Is everypony alright?” Breeze asked, huffing.

They had gotten into a bar fight, and now they were the only conscious ones in the bar.

“Yeah, I think so,” Treble said.

“I’m good too,” Flit said.

“Meanies,” Violet said, rolling one of the knocked out patrons over.

“Well, what now?” Breeze asked.

“Well, taking a breather would be nice,” Flit said.

“Yeah, let’s take a break. We should be pretty safe in here,” Treble said.

“Alright,” Breeze said, and moved over to a toppled table. “Can somepony give me a hoof here?”

“Sure,” Flit said, and helped Breeze right the table.

The others grabbed some intact chairs and they all sat down around the table.

“So, what’s the plan?” Flit asked the gather group.

“Well, we’ve come this far. We can’t be discovered now,” Treble said.

“Yeah, but we also need to find the Elements,” Breeze said.

“Yeah, and even if we find the two, then there’s still one more,” Flit said.

“Well, remember the stories?” Breeze asked.

“Ooh, I love stories!” Violet cheered.

“About the Elements? Back when Twilight was the bearer of magic?” Flit asked.

“Yeah. Remember when they went to face Nightmare Moon?”

“The last Element, Magic, didn’t reveal itself until the other five were activated,” Treble said.

“Exactly. So, if we can find the other two, then maybe magic will reveal itself, and the Elements will be restored,” Breeze said excitedly.

“If that’s the case, then we need to find Kindness and Honesty,” Flit said.

“But how are we going to do that? If Darkstar has one, and another is close, how are we supposed to get to them?” Flit questioned.

“Wait...” Breeze trailed off, deep in thought.

“What?” the others asked, looking at him intently.

“I think I know what we have to do, but we can’t do it yet. It’s best if we just rest here for the moment,” he said.

The others looked at him quizzically, but ultimately agreed.

“Let’s see if there’s anything to eat around here,” Violet suggested.
--

Red was flying over the buildings, trying to locate hidden threats, when suddenly something hit him from the side, causing him to tumble briefly through the air.

“Watch where you’re flying,” a pegasus chuckled.

Red turned to face his attacker, a seemingly normal pegasus.

“What’s the matter? Confused?” the pegasus laughed, and disappeared.

“What?” Red cried, as he was hit in the back.

“This is too easy,” the pegasus laughed.

Red steadied himself again and faced his laughing opponent.

“If you want to know the name of the pony that’s gonna kick your flank, it’s Flicker,” he said.
--

Luna and Sombra had begun to carve a path towards the palace, almost keeping pace with Celestia as she flew over them.

“How long do you think we’ll have to keep holding back?” Sombra asked, riding a crystal through a crow od shades.

“We have to keep them busy until the Elements are found,” Luna replied, swinging a crescent shaped blade through a group of shades blocking her path.

“Let’s just hope our son doesn’t begin fighting himself,” Sombra said.

“Indeed...” Luna said.
--
Darkstar watched the battle unfolding before him.

His mother and father carving a path directly towards him, while Celestia flew above them, occasionally casting blast of
energy down on the shades below.

“If you want to fight me so badly, then I will not keep you waiting,” Darkstar said, spreading his black wings.

With a sweep of his wings, he launched himself into the air and began to fly towards Celestia, trails of black smoke following him.