AN: Well, here we are with another crazy crossover with ponies. In any case, I've taken some Dante's Inferno from both the poem and the game so you'll see a little bit of both throughout the story. To those offended by religion or anything to do with it, I can only implore that you not read this for it is based upon such.
Trixie's Inferno First Circle Limbo
"Ugh, where am I?" As I woke up from a drawl, I could not help but entertain the thought that I, the Great and Powerful Trixie, had become lost. How I came to heart of the Everfree Forest was not important. Rather, what was urgent at the time was how I should approach the dire consequence of losing oneself within the damned forest.
"Hello? Is anypony there? The Great and Powerful Trixie demands your assistance!" I was a foal to expect any sort of response save for the "unnatural environment." But, to my great surprise, a voice echoed through the immense foliage.
"Good evening, Trixie." I looked towards the direction of the voice. What I beheld literally took my breath away. There, in front of me, was a unicorn stallion draped in robes not unlike mine. He held a staff via magic. However, what was truly incredible about him was his ghostly appearance. "I take it you find my looks to be rather, shocking?" There was a hint of humor in his voice but was quickly displaced.
"Obviously! You are quite ethereal, see-through."
"It comes with the territory. Oh my, where are my manners? Allow me to introduce myself. Many years before the time of Celestia when I lived on this plain of existence, I was known as Virgil." Admittedly, I was not in my healthiest state at the time which forced me to take a while to recognize this historical figure that stood in front of me.
"Virgil? One of the original masters of magic? THE Virgil? You're an idol to many! Especially to me! It was you above all unicorns that inspired me to go further with magic!"
"I am very glad to hear that, young one. But, I come to you on urgent matters. If you would be so kind as to follow me…" Sure, it was Virgil we're talking about here. But, anypony with a shred of common sense would question the situation I was in.
"Hold on. You're a ghostly apparition of Virgil in the middle of the Everfree Forest and you expect me to follow you? How do I know this isn't some sort of trick or hallucination? And where on Equestria are you taking me anyway?" He turned to meet my gaze and as I stared into his eyes, I couldn't help but shudder.
"Trixie, the path you trot on is a dangerous one that will lead to ruination of your body, of your soul. If nothing is done, you may just end up in Hell for eternity." Now, if it were anypony that threatened me with Hell and sin, I would've literally zipped their mouth shut. However, in my weakened state, there was nothing I could do.
"So, where will you have me go," I sighed in defeat. "I do hope you are leading me out of this place."
"Oh, we are most definitely departing Everfree Forest. It has been decreed by The One that you traverse the Nine Circles of Hell and learn to face your own sins." It was strange at the time. He claimed the "path" which I walked on would lead me to damnation, yet here we are, discussing about taking a little trip down under.
"What? And you expect me just comply? I refuse to do such a thing!" To make my point clear, I sat on my haunches and crossed my forelegs over my chest. It was a childish act, yes, but would YOU want to go to Hell on your own free will?
"You haven't much of a choice, honestly. Its either you follow me, or remain here, trapped indefinitely. As long as you do not recognize your sins, you will be unable to leave this Forest."
"Well, since you put it that way…"
"Most excellent. Now then, if you be so kind as to stand near me, we will descend." With no other choice, I stood back up and walked towards him. It was a surreal experience, to be in the presence of Virgil alone. What made it even more incredible was that he was about to transport us to Hell, of all places. Now, like most ponies, I also have somewhat of a fascination with death and the afterlife. What does it feel like? What happens afterwards? The general concept of Heaven and Hell alone were fathomless to begin with! As we teleported, the sensation was different, not like your usual teleportation spell. I actually felt the rushing winds as we "fell" through the earth. For a moment, I thought our descent would never end. Then, after what felt like hours, we slowed to a halt. We softly landed before a gate, eternally writhing with negative energy. It looked to have been carved and sculpted with living flesh as the building block. At the top were scrawls that I could not make out. It was written in an antiquated, forgotten language that only Princess Celestia and Princess Luna may recognize. I turned to Virgil, asking him in a way that wouldn't hint at my fear of Hell what those scriptures meant. He read it to me:
"Through me the way is to the city dolent; through me the way is to eternal dole; through me the way among the people lost. Justice incited my sublime creator; created me divine omnipotence, the highest wisdom and primal love. Before me there were no created things, only eterne, and I eternal last. All hope abandon, ye who enter in!"
"Must you be so theatric?"
"Would you have preferred me to sound like an old coot that's on his last legs?"
"Hm, good point. By the way, you look like somepony I've met before. And I'm not referring to textbooks of you."
"I hope this referral is of good merit."
"I'm sorry to say, but it is not. May I see your cutie mark, if you don't mind me so boldly asking?"
"Not at all, young lady," With a flash of his horn, his robes were gone. His cutie mark was comprised of a scroll overlapping a series of sparkles. The moment I saw his mark, those sparkles especially, I knew something was going on. "See something you recognize?"
"Yes, yes I do. Tell me this, Virgil. Do you keep track of your future generations?"
"From time to time, I do look upon the surface world. But alas, I was a virgin while I lived, but I did have pupils to pass on my teachings."
"Do you happen to be familiar with a unicorn by the name of Twilight Sparkle?"
"Ah, one of Celestia's many prized pupils, is she not?"
"Hmph, no wonder she was skilled with magic. Though commoner I am, she will rue the day she ousted The Great and Powerful Trixie!"
"Hah hah, young rivalry… Come, let us enter through these gates." The doors slowly swung open with cacophonous creaking. An overwhelming heat engulfed my whole body, as if I were on fire myself.
"Welcome, to the First Circle of Hell, Limbo. Into the blind world we have descended. Cast all fear and cowardice aside. We have come to the cliffs above Acheron. Wretched souls walk this tortured path to board Charon's vessel." Perhaps it was the surroundings that were getting to me, but I couldn't shake the notion that I was damned already.
"Virgil, will I be undone?" I asked. Though he said to put my fears away, it took nearly all my willpower to not scream and whimper at the horrid sights that encircle me. In fact, it was only at that moment did I take a look around to find the sources of that horrible screaming. It was awful. Shades were trapped in walls, forever locked away with no place for movement. Their hooves desperately tried to reach out through the small openings, as if it would help them escape their prison. These shades that I speak of are no more than shadows of their former selves from above on the surface. All of them were stripped of their fur and flesh, leaving only dry, darkened meat exposed to the netherworld. Their eyes were hollowed out, leaving only gaps with soulless stares. Nothing but skin and bones, the shades were constantly screaming in agony. Somehow, I managed to tear my eyes away from the damned and looked below the cliffs, just to see how high up we are. There was no end to that chasm which grew bright with the hellfire. Even from this great height, I felt the intensity of its heat. I can only imagine what it felt like to be punished by those flames.
"Worry not, Trixie. It has been ordained by The One. No harm shall befall you on this journey." Though his words did little to comfort me, I did manage a small smile. I remembered little from my schooling days, I do recall that Limbo in particular was supposed to be a sort of "faux paradise" for those unable to reach the true Kingdom. But my knowledge remains limited, for beyond Limbo, I cannot trace anything back.
"Virgil, where are the green fields, and the castle with the seven gates? They seem to be absent."He chuckled, although it was lacking in mirth.
"It is good to hear that your education system did not forget to teach you about the nine circles! Though it seems they must work on their imprinting skills…In any case, we are quite a distance away from where I reside. Though we were virtuous in our lives, we did not accept The One as well. So, our punishment is denial into Paradise."
"That doesn't sound very fair. I mean, you were born before that era ever existed!"
"You musn't worry about me or the others. Right now, this is about you, and your journey of self-realization." "Self-realization" he told me. What was there to realize about me that I already don't know?
"Right. Well then, shall we board Charon's vessel?" As we walked the path to Charon, more shades decorated the surroundings, giving the walls an organic, almost living feeling. But how can anything truly live down here? No, this was not what I would call living. As we neared the docks, Charon's deep, unpony voice rang throughout the chasm.
"Woe to you, o wicked souls. Do not ever hope to see Paradise," Suddenly, he reared his head towards me. This creature, Charon, was a stallion, though not something I would definitely call handsome anytime soon. He wore a cloak that covered his entire body and the hood that draped over his head showed only his old, wrinkled face. He was incredibly tall, maybe even taller than Princess Celestia herself. "You there! Stand aside from the dead." As he approached me with his towering figure and oar in hoof, no longer did I feel great or powerful. Sure, he was an earth pony, but what good was my magic if I couldn't even vanquish an ursa MINOR? Thankfully, Virgil intervened before I had a panic attack. Something I would never admit openly…
"Stand aside, Charon. This is official business." The earth pony's stature visibly softened.
"Ah, this is the one? Very well, I'll be making a personal trip just for you two. Follow me." We boarded a small boat fit for three ponies. As he ferried us across the Acheron, I couldn't help but peer over the edge of the boat to see into the water. Surely this unholy water would be deemed unfit for any creature above on the surface. It was dark and murky, perpetrated only by those shades that were foolish enough to try and escape their punishment. Their pitiful cries for help pierced my heart, and I almost found myself nearly extending my hoof to try and pull up one of those poor souls into the boat. However, Virgil seemed to have read my mind, for when I looked upon him, he merely shook his head.
"Beyond Limbo is the fallen King Minos, judge of the damned. But for those who remain in Limbo, the rest shall be cast into the circles below."
"Did ever any soul pass through here, and was afterwards saved?"
"I once saw the Mighty One, crowned with victory, take from here the shade of our first parent, of his son Abel, of Abraham, and others. But before these, no soul was ever saved." Unbelievable, we're only in the first circle, and I could feel my stomach turn inside out. If you thought you feared Hell before, just wait until you visit this netherworld for yourself, if ever given the chance. You will see things that make my words incredible.
"Here we are, at the Hall of Splendor. Just beyond this, is King Minos. Let us depart. Charon, thank you for taking us here." The ferrypony of the damned merely nodded as he sailed away back to the shores of Acheron, most likely to take more souls here. As we traversed the Hall of Splendor, I looked to and fro, wondering where the shades are. I looked to Virgil for more information about this area. "In this place reside the pagan souls and honored names which resound in your life above. Though denied Paradise, they dwell distinguished from the manner of the rest."
"Who is honored here?" As my guide explained, he pointed at various statues of ponies, most likely for dramatic effect.
"Hector, Caesar, King Latinus, Camilla… I cannot give full account. The telling would come short of fact."
"And why is that?"
"Details amount in vast quantities. Merely listing them all would take quite some time. Perhaps, when this is all over with, we may visit this place once more and talk with them personally."
"Oh, that sounds wonderful! So, if you are here, does that mean the other Original Masters are here as well?"
"That is correct. Homer, Horace, Ovid, among others reside in Limbo with me." As we continued our conversation about history, I heard the occasional bellow of certain circles echo through the halls.
"The one shouting, is that King Minos?" I ask. He nodded and pointed at a pair of doors decorated with ornaments. We opened the door to reveal the court of the damned. I would have never envisioned King Minos to look like this. He was serpentine in nature, but his upper torso and limbs consisted that of a mythical creature called a "human." He was incredibly massive, the size of a castle. He wore what looked like shades as a sort of demented necklace and upon his head was sewn a crown. Like the shades, his eyes remained vacant for the sockets. He grabbed a hold of one of the shades who were "waiting in line" to be sentenced.
"No, no, please! This is not my fate! No!" King Minos held the shade up to his face and sniffed.
"Hmmm…suicide…To Violence you are sentenced then!" Minos then proceeded to use one of his snake-limbs to impale the poor soul onto his Wheel of Torture. Then, he spun the wheel and sent the shade to Violence. As he reached for another shade, he stopped midway and looked towards us. "Who comes into my house of pain?" He must've been blind if he could not see either me or Virgil.
"It is I, Virgil. And with me, Trixie."
"Aaahhh, the one who walks here by divine ground?"
"The very same. If you would be so kind as to let us pass through here…"
"Certainly. Of course, I'd be wary of Cleopatra, if I were either of you," As we made our way to the second circle of Hell, Lust, King Minos spoke to me. "Strange, why do I smell the sin of suicide upon you?" I stopped in my tracks to ask what he meant by that. He paused momentarily, thinking about his answer before a light bulb visibly clicked in his head. "Ah, yes. I remember now. It was nearly two decades ago. A relative of yours had committed suicide and I've condemned her to the seventh circle, Violence. I also smell greed and fraud upon you as well. Though this time, not of another bonded blood." I shuddered at the thought of being physically impaled through the chest through that damned wheel of his.
"King Minos, if this doesn't set me on the straight path, I fear that we may meet again on different circumstances." He roared in deafening laughter.
"We will see about that now, won't we? I know exactly what your future holds, but my tongue shall remain silent on that subject." I began to grow weary of every creature who weaves cryptic words down here. We bade farewell to the Judge of the Damned as we descended lower, into the second circle of Hell, Lust. At this point, I could only imagine what unspeakable horrors I can find here…