|Falling Stars: The Land of Twisted Metal
Author: Ar0k PM
A star has fallen, causing the very foundation of Equestria to tremble. An expedition is dispatched by the Princess of the Sun, to a land where the star made contact. A land beyond the control of even the mighty rulers of day and night. Multi-universe crossover. Romance is borderline friendshipping.Rated: Fiction T - English - Adventure/Romance - Chapters: 4 - Words: 12,845 - Reviews: 2 - Favs: 1 - Follows: 2 - Updated: 07-01-12 - Published: 06-10-12 - id: 8205447
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
In the peaceful night of Equestria, everything was still. It was late, and nearly ever pony was sleeping tightly in their cozy homes. The land was silent, save for the sounds of the soft breeze, or the scuttle of a rabbit across the grass. It seemed that this peaceful scene could not be interrupted. But as things were quiet and serene on the ground, the sky's tranquility had been broken. A streak of light invaded the night sky, crashing towards the earth. The light shone brilliantly and only grew with intensity as it fell through Princess Luna's night sky.
The Princess of the Night herself stood alert, on a thin patch of clouds overlooking Equestria. The falling star was hard to miss as it burned through the atmosphere, streaking beyond the horizon. Worried, she closed her eyes and followed the star with her magic, just as a witch would look into her Seeing Eye ball. Seeing the falling star in her mind, she asked the mysterious astral body:
"Where did you come from my star? Why are you falling?"
And suddenly, without warning, a flash of memory mingled with her magic. The vision of the falling star had started to fade, and instead an old memory was forced into Princess Luna's mind. Luna tried to focus back to the falling star, but it seemed as if an outside power was forcing in a new vision. In her thoughts, Princess Luna could see the earth from what she thought was her former prison on the moon. Things were different. She could not see anything around her. Only the sight of darkness and the shining Earth lay out in front of her. She could not even see the stars or the planets out in the distance.
But then, just when the vast darkness of the void seemed to be impenetrable, a small light shone just to her left. Slowly, another had appeared to her right. As Princess Luna looked around at these lights, she noticed two more small lights shining behind her, parallel to the ones in front of her.
Then she realized. These were the stars that set her free. Finally the vision had ended, and Princess Luna found herself sitting back to where she was. With an expression of shock, she watched as the falling star in the night made contact with the earth.
Celestia's eyes fluttered open. Her ear twitched towards one corner of the room and then towards another. Something was wrong. She tilted her head up and off her mattress, her senses slowly kicking in. Something was terribly wrong. At that moment she was hit by an immense blast of pressure. The ground underneath her shook and shot her up into the air. Celestia landed with a loud thud.
"Goodness!" She cried out on the floor. Feeling relatively unharmed, the princess extended her wings and lifted herself up from the floor, setting herself back down on the mattress. The doors to her chambers burst open and two Pegasus ponies clad in blue and gold stood at the ready.
"Your highness! Is everything all right?" Cried the first. The other Pegasus scanned the room for any kind of trouble.
"Everything is fine…yes thank you." Celestia paused before adding: "It was just a dream."
The guards just looked at their princess and then at each other. With a subtle shrug and a courteous bow, both of her guards turned around and moved to exit the room.
"Yes your majesty. Have a good night's rest."
Right before the two guards left, Celestia needed to ask them a question.
"One moment please." Her two most loyal servants stopped and turned around crisply to face their princess.
"Did the two of you feel…anything... a moment ago?" Celestia asked.
The two guards looked at each other then back at Celestia.
One of the guards spoke
"What do you mean your majesty?"
Celestia smiled and waved a hoof.
"It's nothing. Carry on."
With the doors shut, Celestia was left alone to worry. Her guards confirmed her suspicions. The powerful tremor she felt was not an earthquake, but a single scream. The peace and harmony of Equestria had been assaulted, and it lashed out to defend itself. The deep and powerful magic that bound her to this land had awoken and Celestia knew nothing good ever came from such an occurrence.
This was the first time in a millennium that Celestia had felt fear. The last time something like this happened was a thousand years ago when her sister rebelled. The memory caused the bottom of her stomach to drop from underneath her.
"Luna!" She closed her eyes tight, concentrating on her magic to find her sister. She searched through trees and mountains, arching over the night sky in her mind before her concentration was interrupted.
Her sister's voice brought sweet relief to Celestia. She broke the spell as her sister flew in through the open window.
"Luna! Thank goodness." Celestia exclaimed. She walked towards the window where her beloved sister was standing. Celestia thought how silly it was for her to think that her sister would betray her again.
"Sister! I saw something fall," Luna said running over to hug her big sister.
"It was a star!"
Celestia rubbed her neck along Luna's mane, just glad that she was all right.
"Tell me everything Luna. I'm Listening."
Twilight Sparkle was up before the sun and finished breakfast before the rooster could declare it morning. Her routine was organized to achieve maximum efficiency. After all, she wasn't Princess Celestia's number one student for nothing. After breakfast came her morning review. She hummed quietly to herself as she walked out of the kitchen and into the library's main room. Twilight shook her mane and succeeded in releasing the last bit of weariness from her body. Now she was ready to begin reviewing her lessons from last night.
Her horn glowed a pale white as she focused on "Known Herbs and Plants of the Ever-free Forest." It gently slid between its neighbors, but stopped before it could come out all the way.
Strange… Twilight thought. Maybe she was more tired than she actually felt. Twilight put a little more juice into her magic, but it barely had any effect.
Twilight suppressed an angry snort, so as not to disturb her young assistant, who was sleeping on the balcony above her. She focused with all her might on retrieving her reading material. With her level of magic, this simple spell should have worked as intended with almost no effort. Instead, it took all she could to move the book another centimeter off the bookshelf.
"Maybe I should just go back to bed." Twilight wondered if waking up early every morning was the cause of this hindrance in her ability. Finally relenting, Twilight took a step away from the bookshelf, her horn glowing a pale grey all on its own.
Without warning, the grey pulsating light expanded to encompass the entire library.
Spike stumbled down the stairs; the recent commotion had woken him up anyway.
"Twilight? What's going on?" He asked half awake.
"I don't know spike!" Twilight responded.
"My horn just started doing stuff on its own!" The glow pulsated three times, and on the third pulse, all books were pulled violently from their shelves.
The books levitated in the air without moving before piling into a half circle around them. It was then Twilight understood.
"Unicorn magic…" She mouthed, awed at what was transpiring around her.
"What?" Spike asked, now fully awake after seeing all of his work for the next couple of days lying on the floor. Cleaning everything up was not going to be easy.
"Unicorn magic spike! My horn is acting on its own! I've only heard stories, including how Rarity got her cutie mark, but I know that it's trying to tell me something! All I have to do is let it…" Twilight was unable contain her excitement. She paced as she waited for her horn to take action again. After about ten seconds of nothing, she scanned the room and noticed that all the books within the library were on the floor, except for one book on a top shelf by the staircase.
Twilight managed to get the book down to her level without magic. She blew off the dust and read the title out loud.
"Old Mares' Tales."
Intrigued, she opened the book to the only pages that her uncontrollable magic allowed: The story of Nightmare Moon, and a short story about "The Land of Twisted Metal."
She remembered this one from when her family used to gather around and tell creepy stories by the hearth. For some reason her horn was leading her to these stories. Unable to stop herself from feeling excited she immediately started reading about the mysterious land.
There was a sketch above the title of the old mare's tale. It was a silhouette of jagged edges. Twilight guessed them to be mountains. On top of one of the center mountain there was a weird insignia resembling that of a closed eye.
Spike started working on cleaning up. But no sooner had he reached down to pick up the first book, when he burped shooting out green flames from his mouth. The fire quickly dissipated to reveal a note hastily tied with red ribbon.
"Twilight! A letter from the princess!"
Twilight's horn stopped glowing. But she was too distracted at the news to notice.
"Well read it Spike!" She said turning around to face him. Spike cleared his throat.
"My most faithful student, Twilight Sparkle
I am dispatching chariots to Ponyville as soon as I am done with this letter. There is something I need you and your friends to accomplish. I'm sorry if this comes as very sudden, but the safety of all Equestria could be at stake. I promise I will explain everything once you and your friends reach me.
Sincerely, Princess Celestia."
"That's it!" Cried a cyan Pegasus with rainbow mane. Rainbow Dash flew alongside three separate flying chariots carrying Twilight and the rest of her friends. The chariots were being pulled and guarded by more than a dozen royal guards. The chariots all flew in a tight formation, but Twilight still had to yell for her friend to hear her amidst the roaring wind.
"The princess is asking for our help Rainbow! I'm sure she has her reasons for not telling us right away." Twilight responded putting the scroll back into her saddlebag.
"Maybe it's a PAAAAARRTTYYY!" Cried an over-hyped pink pony one chariot over. The wind could do nothing to muffle the mighty voice of Pinkie Pie and everyone who heard it turned to look at her, including some of the guards.
Sitting next to her, Applejack suppressed the urge to face-hoof. She put a hoof on her friends back and tried to let her down slowly.
"I seriously doubt that, sugar cube. Why would princess Celestia send us such a serious letter if it were 'fer a party?"
"You don't know what the princess is capable of Applejack." Pinkie Pie said amidst a fit of giggles.
"Oh that's right! You don't know." Rainbow Dash joined in, stifling her own fit of giggles.
Twilight was just as confused as Applejack. 'Pinkie, what are you talking about?"
"Oh Twilight. Princess Celestia likes to have fun just like anypony else. Where do you think we got the idea to replace all your ink bottles with disappearing ink?"
Rainbow dash couldn't control her self any longer and burst out laughing.
"Yeah! At her get together she mentioned how she played that prank on you years ago."
Twilight could not believe her ears. She remembered that odd day of her filly days. One day Twilight was given the task to transcribe all of the Princess' conversations for practice in writing with magic. The results were disastrous due to the simple fact that her notes kept disappearing. Now she knew why the Princess was very lenient with her punishment and looked overly pleased with herself that day.
"I was panicking all week!" Twilight replied fully aghast.
"I know! She told us!" Pinkie Pie and Rainbow Dash squealed together.
Pinkie Pie and Rainbow Dash's laughter was contagious and Applejack couldn't help but laugh herself. When the laughter died down Applejack sighed and smiled. Hoping against hope that it truly was all a joke. She had resolved long ago that she would break all four of her legs if it meant protecting the people she loved. She leaned over the right side of her chariot, to check on her other friends who have been relatively quiet for the entire trip. She cupped her hooves around her muzzle to yell out.
"Hey Fluttershy! How's Rarity doin'?"
The wind did a pretty good job of silencing the words of the quiet mare. Applejack had to read the mare's mouth to understand her response. "Um..She's fine…I think."
Rarity had a near panic attack when Twilight went to fetch her with the guarded chariots.
"An audience with her Royal Highness! At this hour! In Canterlot!" Rarity screamed out.
"Sorry Rarity, but the princess says it urgent and-" Twilight didn't get to finish her sentence. Rarity launched herself into the bathroom, furiously trying to wash off her over night beauty products.
It was several minutes before the Royal Guards moved over to Twilight's side.
"Miss Sparkle, I apologize but we must be quick. It's the Princess' orders."
Twilight Sparkle sighed deeply and nodded her head. "Fine, lets go get her then."
She finally gave in, but allowed the Royal Guards to go in first. They were wearing armor after all.
Rarity kept herself down to avoid the whipping wind from ruining her hair. She was in the midst of checking herself for any last imperfection she might have missed when the chariots began to descend.
The chariots landed on a wide balcony of the Royal Palace. Rarity was among the first to disembark. She cleared her throat and approached the guards who were pulling her chariot. "Gentlecolts, I do believe I owe you an apology."
The two Royal Guards who braved her domain merely shrugged.
"There's nothing to apologize for ma'am." Said the first guard. Sporting several hoof marked sized bruises on his face and neck in addition to the several dents in his armor.
The second guard turned his head to the side and spit out a loose tooth before responding.
"We would die for our princess ma'am." His helmet was missing, revealing a patch of frazzled mane.
Rarity smiled awkwardly. "I'm sure your devotion and love for Equestria knows no bounds. I promise I'll fix and return your helmet as soon as I am able."
"There is no need, I can get another one from the Royal armory." The guard responded. The two guards gave a slight bow and moved inside the palace, bringing the chariots inside.
Twilight passed them and winced as she saw the injuries of the two brave souls who dared to rip Rarity from her beauty products. She turned her attention to their surroundings and immediately recognized their landing space. They were on a staging platform for the royal guard flying patrols. She used to come here to watch the Royal Guards perform aerial maneuvers with the princess.
Not long after they landed, they heard the flutter of great wings, and the ponies looked up to see Princess Celestia descending from her royal chambers, closely followed by her sister Princess Luna.
Everypony bowed low and deep in respect, but Celestia would have none of it.
"Rise my friends, you don't have to be so formal with me."
Twilight smiled at that comment, feeling rather pleased with herself.
Pinkie Pie was the first to rise and nearly jumped on the Princess. "Ooo! Ooo! Your Majesty! What's the surprise! Is it a Party? Does Luna know what it is?"
Pinkie Pie drew the biggest intake of air, in one of her trademark Pinkie Pie gasps
"Is it her birthday! Is it, is it, is it?" She said hopping around Luna who was a little taken a back by the pink blur.
Celestia laughed, but it almost sounded forced. Twilight noticed that her long magical flowing mane seemed less colorful and felt much less alive and extravagant. Something unpleasant twisted inside Twilight's heart.
"I'm afraid not Pinkie. The situation is much more serious than that." Her expression was that of happiness but it was difficult to hide what she really felt.
"Is everything alright Princess?" Fluttershy asked, walking up to her with those eyes that could heal even the most broken of hearts.
"No. I'm not alright." Celestia made eye contact with each Element of Harmony, remembering each of their concerned faces. Even Pinkie Pie stopped bouncing and sensed the seriousness of the situation. For the first time in a while Celestia saw her wear a frown.
"I am calling you here today to ask for your help. The peace and harmony of this world has been disturbed and all of Equestria could be in Jeopardy." That unpleasant feeling in Twilight's heart grew to include her stomach. In all the years she was her student, this was the first time in she saw the Princess this disturbed.
Luna cleared her throat, wanting to get straight to the point. "Last night a star fell from the sky and hit the earth. This is something that has never before happened in the history of Equestria."
Celestia nodded. "Therefore I am hereby ordering an expedition to the place where the star fell. We must find out why it fell, and if evidence suggests, find out who is responsible."
Twilight instinctively raised a hoof and Celestia nodded, giving the ok to ask a question.
"Sorry princess…but do we have reason to suspect foul play? And if so who could possibly have the power to cause a star to fall?"
Celestia turned to her sister, who responded. "The star fell under my watch. I know everything about the heavenly bodies in my domain and there was something very unusual about this star. For one thing the star remained intact during its descent. Nothing the firmament could do to tear it apart worked."
Fluttershy looked incredibly disturbed.
"Why would something do that to a star?"
"It's for protection." Celestia said plainly. "Everyday thousands of rocks unwillingly pass through our skies, but very little, if any at all actually make it all the way down."
"It's why we see meteor showers." Twilight said smiling at her friend, reminding her of that spectacular event they experienced not to long ago. "If the firmament wasn't in place we would be showered by rocks daily, nopony would be safe."
Luna nodded, and Fluttershy smiled shyly. "Oh. Now I understand…thank you."
Celestia continued. "So now you understand the importance of knowing exactly what happened. Twilight, you and your friends will be part of this expedition. I believe the elements of harmony will be important assets in facing any challenges ahead."
"Leave it to us princess!" Rainbow Dash exclaimed while lifting off the ground and doing a somersault. The idea of going on another adventure resonated pleasurably in her mind.
"Calm yourself now Dash." Rarity added. "Were still in the presence of Royalty."
Rarity cleared her throat. "We would be more than happy to accept such a distinct honor. Where do we find this star?"
"My sister can answer that one." Celestia said glancing over to Luna.
Luna nodded and stepped forward to address them. "It fell to the far west, beyond the frontier region."
"Beyond the Frontier Region?" Applejack asked slightly surprised. "Well, this is going to be some expedition if were goin' that far."
"The Land of Twisted Metal!" Twilight exclaimed out loud.
"Oh that's just an old mare's tale." Rarity said making a gesture with her hoof.
"So was Nightmare Moon!" Twilight exclaimed excitedly. Luna smiled awkwardly while tapping the ground with her fore-hoof.
"Twilight is right. That is the most likely place the star has fallen according to what Luna has told me. As expected of my most faithful student." Celestia said causing Twilight to blush furiously.
"Who else is coming on the road trip?" Pinkie asked, forgetting the serious nature of their expedition.
Celestia cleared her throat.
"Gene! Garret!" She called out. To Rarity's surprise the two guards who sustained her…resistance…flew to her majesty's side.
"Yes your highness!" They said.
"These are two of my most loyal guards. You met them during our little get together at Ponyville." She cleared her throat and turned to her guardsmen. She took note of their injuries before asking: "Are you two ready for travel?"
"Yes your highness!" They said again in unison. Celestia nodded. "Very good. You two will be taking commands from my sister from now on, are we clear?"
"Yes your highness!"
"Please take care of her during the expedition." Celestia said with emphasis.
"Tia!" Luna exclaimed realizing what her sister was planning.
Celestia nuzzled her sister neck. "You don't think I would let you miss the chance of making friends and going on a great adventure, do you little sister?"