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Found 25 results

  1. Spring Rain It was a day off from work, and Spring was eager to spend it outside. It felt great to feel the sun warm her body and see the growth of plants around her. It was getting close to harvest time. Everywhere that she could see there were fresh herbs to be picked, trees heavy with fruit, and more vegetables than one could shake a stick at. Someone had even rather humorously grabbed a giant pumpkin, hollowed it out, and filled it with apples. The pony left the town and trotted down past the farms occasionally pausing to fully relish in how great the weather was. It was enough to really put an extra bounce in her trot. It was a good time, if also very dangerous, to see what the Everfree Forest might have to offer. She would have to be careful not to go too far of course. She didn't want to get into trouble by disturbing the dangerous wild creatures that lived there.
  2. "Um, Keepsake," her editor, Red Ink, said over the phone, "you can't be serious." "What do you mean?" Keepsake responded as she trotted into the kitchen, using her horn's magic to pull the old phone along behind her. She hummed to herself as she opened the fridge and began floating out the makings for not one, but several sandwhiches. "The Everfree Forest? By yourself?" Red Ink said irritably, seeming to sense that Keepsake was hardly paying attention to her. "I'm not going adventuring too deep, and besides, I heard there's even a pony living out there! I'll be fine!" Of this Keepsake was certain. Her move to Ponyville had been about much more than just researching for her newest book - it was her first time getting to live all alone, and she felt so independent! (Not to mention the other perks, like peace and quiet, privacy, and final say in all the decorations.) She was still riding the high of her newfound rule over this tiny domain, and nopony was going to take that away from her! "Keepsake, didn't you say you wanted to get to know Everfree from the point of view of the locals?" Keepsake stopped mid-wrap of her newest sandwhich. The magic fizzled out around it, like soda flattening."Well, yes..." She said reluctantly. She hated when Red Ink made sense. "Then wouldn't it make sense to find a guide? Somepony local who could show you?" "Well... yes." Keepsake admitted finally. She was becoming thoughtful. "Somepony who's been there before. Somepony with stories." "Exactly!" Red Ink agreed eagerly. She sounded relieved. * That evening, Keepsake fretted over the first draft of her ad. "I hope it'll be okay..." she murmured, worrying the flyer with her hoof. In bold black ink it read: "HELP WANTED! Guide through the Everfree Forest. My name is Keepsake, and I'm new here in Ponyville. I moved here to work on my newest novel inspired by tales from the Everfree Forest. I'd love to see it upclose, and get an idea of what it's like living around such strange magic! Experience in wilderness safely, and juicy stories about Everfree, preferred. Interested ponies can mail to..." Well, what more could she say? With that, she dipped her quill back into it's ink vile and scratched out her address. She aimed her horn at the flyer and, with a sparkler-like explosion, it became a stack. She carried it to her window and one by one, began to send the flyers with her magic. Keepsake watched fireflies dance between the floating pages as they sailed away, influenced to pin themselves to storefronts and notice boards across Ponyville, and smiled as she watched them. There was a softness in her chest that night, as they receeded, that told her no matter what, good things were going to happen here.
  3. Crickets were chirping in the bushes as Remington arrived and waited by the edge of the Everfree forest for his fillyfriend to meet him. This was the right time, right? He thought to himself. Remington had lost his overly nervous attitude about spending time with the filly, but his heart still fluttered a little when she was included in whatever he was doing. It had been a week or so since they had started officially dating. In terms of the environment of the classroom, their relationship was not nearly as romantic as two would be in the Ponyville parks on Hearts and Hooves Day, but the assumption was that they would do everything around each other, whether it be in the cafeteria eating lunch, sitting in the back row of Loyalty class, or just reclining in the same tree every afternoon during recess. Remington sat down along the path that entered the forest. She would show up eventually. Moonlight's gait had gained some extra bounce and juice since she had cemented her relationship with Remington. Ponies far and wide would know she had a coltfriend because she made sure to tell them a coltfriend even when they didn't ask if she had a coltfriend but she was more than happy to share it. And how could she not? She had the best one ever. How good was he? So good that when his fillyfriend went out of her way to make him go out of his way to take her to a special place in the woods, he didn't complain. At least to her. So no wonder her gait and bounce was still evident as she made her way to the edge of the Everfree, catching eye of the colt with the beautiful eyes. "Heeeeey there Rem-Rem!" Remington stared at a few stars in the sky. He thought he knew what they were but he couldn't recognize the constellation. But then he was distracted by the voice of his heart. He looked her way, smiled, and chuckled. "Hey, Glitzy. You ready to go in?" She finished her trot next to him and pecked him once on both sides of the cheek. "You betcha! Like, I am so totally ready to this bitchin' treehouse everycreature is raving about!" "Are you sure we're allowed? It's not like they take fieldtrips out there every week." "I mean, we are not not allowed, right?" She said with a giggle. "Come on, show me your big brave stallion muscles." Source Remington was always cautious. His narcolepsy trained him to avoid unnecessary risks. However, his new relationship with Moonlight pulled him out of his shell, for better or for worse. Today, he hoped it was for the better. He smiled at her prying and followed her into the forest. He knew that she knew he wasn't all that strong. But the way she made it sound encouraged him all the same. "How far do we have to go in? You know, I've never told you this, but I've never actually been into this forest. I've heard so many stories about bad things coming from it. But lately, it's like everything that's good is hidden inside it. It's like they're trying to cover it up like some big Ponyville conspiracy," he said in jest, half-joking on his premise. Applejack had told her all about the Everfree since she had first come to Ponyville all those moons ago. She knew better than Remington what it was all about, but she'd have to feign ignorance in large part. At least for now. "Well, I mean, like, this was some small farming town. Those towns can be so totally superstitious, right? Me, I'm, like, only a little stitious." Remington chuckled. She was so funny. Maybe hilarious. Maybe the funniest mare in the history of ponies. Or maybe he was in love, and any silly thing she said deserved his honest laughter. Nah, she was hilarious. "Yeah, something like this would never happen in Manehatten. Manehatten would have bulldozed it into a wagon parking garage." Remington frowned pensively. "Maybe the regarding the forest as a living thing is a good thing in that regard." She nodded. "I guess it has its charms. Mostly, right?" She said as she jumped over some tree branches. "See that though? I was totally almost killed there. Stand closer to me. I'm cold and in danger." Remington began walking closer next to Moonlight at her request. He knew she was joking, but he would be serious about getting closer. But what seemed like a silly love game turned into a real problem. The moonlight casting on Moonlight was not as bright as it was near the front of the forest. The trees above that clamored windy howls were also casting dark shadows on the two ponies. He looked up and took notice of the environment they were heading into, but his hoofsteps had slowed. As his sides brushed against Moonlight's, he wondered if she was as secretly scared as he was. "Have you ever been into the Everfree before?" As he got close she allowed herself some time to play with him, her tail wrapping around his as she trotted time in time. As it got dark she would light up her horn and that would give them some more light but...well, dark was dark, spooky was spooky. She was spooked. She had encountered enough wild creatures and even giant pony eating worms before so it wasn't as terrifying, but she wouldn't dissuade him from feeling some fright. "Oh, I mean, like not for long. Not deep," she said as she looked around. She took a deep breath. "Despite the name though, like, I'm not really totally into moonlight this pale. It's a little, ya know, blah." With the help of her hornlight, Remington felt encouraged to help in his own special way. "Let me fly up and see if I can see how far the path goes." He jumped up to take flight and was immediately met with a large tree branch that bounced him back to the ground. He shook himself back to his senses and tried to save face. "Looks good from here." Moonlight giggled as she pulled him up with her magic. "Smooth flying up there, Wonderbolt!" He gasped as he tried to shake his momentary pain. Ahead, he saw a large rock. He walked quickly up to it. "I think I know what this is." Remington carefully cleaned off the extra leaves and branches off it. "It's a, it's it's... it's just a rock." He looked at the large rock with disappointment. His imagination had led him to believe it could be a piece of rubble from the palace of the two sisters, a landmark he read about in books in the library. She trotted up next to him. "Well, ya know. Not every gem a diamond and all that jazz. Your head feeling screwed on right honey?" "Uh, yeah." He said as she walked by him. "I feel fine." He paced next to her. "Especially with you." Did he really just say that? Luckily for Remington's brain, the part of him that feels regretful of the things he says and does was not fully operational after his little bump. She blushed and pushed her snout onto his. "Aww, you're such a softie. No wonder you're my coltfriend. Like, could you imagine if it was anycreature else? Gag me with a spoon!" She said before she kissed him on the lips. "Or you," she said with a wink. Remington's ears darted up as he was kissed. She was soft, and it melted him every time she met him this way. He looked back at her wink with a stare of approval. Mare, she was good. There wasn't anything he could do about it. He was partially convinced she was casting more than just simple light magic. With a few more strides down the path, he asked her. "Wait what do you mean anycreature else?" Remington showed small signs of jealousy as it seemed like she implied the possibility of her ditching the red pegasus for a non-pony student, even though that was not what she said. He wondered who it could be. She trotted alongside him happily, allowing her rather lewd flirt to lie there dead for a moment. And then he asked what she had meant. She laughed. "Oh, I mean oh my Celestia could you imagine me with, like, anycreature else? So grody! Yuck. We're just soooo perfectly made for one another," she said as she cast a glance. "Why, you have any leads on some hunks I should check out?" "No!" Remington responded seriously. "Heh, I mean. No, of course not." He decided to return the favor of evil flirtation. "Unless you know of any babes I should introduce myself to." "Oh, I've seen the way you've looked at Smolder. Pretty hot, right?" Okay, now he knew she was joking. "Haha, yeah, maybe her breath is. Haha ha." With the laughing, Remington lost sight of the path ahead of him and rolled a loose stone off the edge of a cliff. His front hoof sliding caused him to stop. He instinctively held Moonlight back in case she was at risk of falling. His hoof was placed suspiciously. "Good catch...getting frisky, seriously?" She asked with a giggle. "But seriously. Seriously." Ignoring her criticism of his exaggerated precautions, he looked around for a way across the trench, which seemed abrupt, even for a haunted forest. He spotted a rope bridge. "Where do we go now?" "Well, I dunno. Let's go over the bridge! That's new. And tre exciting, right?" Remington took flight and examined the bridge. It was literally hanging by a thread. He flew back to Moonlight. "You know, maybe I could just fly you over there." She can't be that heavy right? Oh, horseshoes, this was awkward. What if he couldn't carry her? What if he was not strong enough. What if she was too heavy. Either way, it would not look good for him if he failed. She gulped. She was a lightweight, but he wasn't...you know what? It'd be fine. This was Equestria. "A personal escort over? I'll take it!" Remington knelt underneath Moonlight and picked her up onto his back. He then started flapping his wings. He flapped harder and harder until his pegasus magic finally granted him a liftoff. The standard hover was harder to maintain, and his wings shook a little more instability in his agility, but he was technically flying. He took a few deep breaths, trying not to show his panting, as it would probably upset Moonlight. He winced a little as he started hovering over the edge. Ever so slowly, he flew to the other side with his motivation lying on his back. As he got closer to the other side, he started to lose momentum and altitude. She clambered on as much as he took her on and she tried to settle evenly on him. She could feel his muscles stretch and pull and his wings flap and strain and he tried to hide it but she knew this was rough for him. He wasn't the strongest flyer. Heck, he wasn't the strongest stallion. But his efforts were enough- both for her emotionally, and also herself physically as they made their way across. She made sure to hop off as soon as possible. "My hero! Now we just gotta do that again on the way back." Once she hopped off his back onto the other side, Remington was more free to raise himself up from fluttering down to the bottom of the trench. Without his beautiful fillyfriend weighing him down, he could finally catch his breath and return to acting like it was nothing. "Heh heh, yeah. One the way back." Immediately up a hill, both of them could see the Castle of the Two Sisters, or at least what was left of it. "Stars of Luna, look! Is that it?" Remington stepped a few steps closer to get a better view of the ruins covered in forest fog. "It's. It's... It's actually kind of small. I thought it would be bigger. It looks bigger in the library books." The Castle was certainly less impressive in pony than in the books, but that was for a few reasons. They were both city ponies and modern cities made most of the old-fashioned marvels look tame by comparison. Then there was age. Only a portion of the Castle remained. "Well, I mean. It is, like, really old and stuff. I'm sure it was cooler back then, right?" "Let's go see how cool it is now." Remington began to forget who he was with and what he was doing. He become overly curious about the ruins. Something about the reality of them existing gave him a different sense of being even though he believe the books that it was real. "So this magical tree thingy. You said it's made of crystals? All I see are gray stones." She looked around. No cool treehouse yet. "Well, we both know it exists, right? Professor Jackie and the others, like, they wouldn't be fibbin'. And Smolder and Gallus and Yona and Silverstream...nah sweetie, we just gotta keep looking! Speaking of looking, like, come and see this radical old banner. Maybe you should take it for your bedroom, Luna-boy," she said as she looked up at an old Lunar banner, imagining him finding room for it in his collection, Remington walked up to the Princess Luna tabard. She was right, it was awesome. It was also very old, and he didn't feel right about just taking it. Wasn't there some law against it? "I can't just take it. What if Princess Luna finds out I took it. What if she banishes me to the dungeon?" "Oh, I'm sure you've dreamed of it already so it can't be too bad...but you're right. We'll probably get yelled at by our professors. Oooh, look at how cute this painting is. Oh, and that window curtain is to die for! Oh, like, look at that- is that a secret door?" Remington could tell Moonlight was beside herself. The interior designer part of her brain was firing on all cylinders. "What secret door?" "Oh, that one," she said as she pointed at a wall. Well, it looked like a wall, but it was cracked open like a door. Remington walked up to it and walked into it. It seemed to go no where, like an indent in a brick wall. He looked back at Moonlight. "It doesn't lead anywherahhhhahhhah!" The ground around the two opened up and sent them both falling into a trap. With a hard thud, Remington hit the ground. "AHHHHHHHH!" She screamed, then smacked against the ground. She pulled herself up lazily, rubbing her head and horn. "That was the worst! Auuughhhh...." she moaned before looking after at him. "You still in one piece, Rem?" "Yeah, I'm fine. Let me get a vine or something to help you climb out." When started flying to the top, a gate closed the top of the trap, keeping him from being able to escape. He fell back down to the bottom, softer this time. "What!?" Her breathing quickened a little, but she kept a smile on. This was an adventure, right? "Okay. Well, let's investigate!" She said as her horn lit up so they could see better. With the help of Moonlight's horn, the both of them could better make out their surroundings. They fell into what looked like an ancient well that was modified into some sort of trap. On one of the walls was a large fissure. Remington moved to it and tried to see if he could see anything through the gaps. He wasn't alone. Inconsiderate of his need for personal space, Moonlight pressed her face closer as well. She got closer and closer until something ran by! "AHHH!" She said as she reared back. A moment passed as she tried to process it. Then she saw it was a rat. "AHHHHHHHHH!" She screamed louder this time, her horn shooting a weak beam towards the fissure as she hopped away. The excitedness of Moonlight pulled Remington's attention away from the crack for a moment as he too saw the rat skitter by. Despite the grossness of such a critter, he knew a rat could easily get to this point from the fissure, which meant the fissure must have lead somewhere. The magical beam Moonlight shot hit the fissure and it started falling away. Remington examined the damage, and tried kicking more wall off to make enough room for a pony to walk through. She saw what he was doing after she allowed herself a moment or three to gather herself. Uggh, it was so gross. Old places were gross. Why was she here? Why weren't they dancing in a ballroom of some majestic crystal treehouse already? How grody. "Plant my life, seriously," she muttered to herself as she trotted up to the fissure and joined her friend in pushing and prodding the solid rock until there was enough space for them. Remington smirked towards his fillyfriend as the two tried to create a path. "Hey, this was all your idea, Babe." She shot a look back. "Well, my idea was, like, crystal dance floors and a totally bitchin' secret hideout. Not all this grodiness-" she started before the fissure finally gave away and she fell forward into the dark. Remington followed her tumble forward to make sure she was ok. She was. Once they created a big enough gap, they were able to walk through a tunnel that had no discernable end. "We could use your light. I hope you got your magic charged up, we might need it a while down here." Her horn lit up as she moved forward. Luckily, all that model work and good dieting meant she worked well in tight spaces, even if the smell of dust and mud and rock and webs made her want to totally vomit. "This should be enough. Hopefully this ends in, like, a scented bath. I could use it." Now that the two were moving forward and able to continue their adventure, Remington was able to take a small second to appreciate his closeness with Moonlight. She was a very pretty filly and an amazing friend. He was lucky to have her, and even though she was a bit much with the grime and dirt of their current situation, he wouldn't trade her attractive spunk for anypony else in this moment. "If not, at least we have each other." "That's something, yeah," she said, though truth be told she'd rather take a shower or a bath than give him a hug if it was offered. She stunk, or think she stunk, and that wasn't the proper way to give a good friend a hug. In what seemed like forever but couldn't have been more than two minutes the path opened up a little, enough for her to not feel as assaulted by dirt, until they reached a somewhat large cavern with water dripping from the ceiling and tiny puddles on the ground. "What is this place?" Remington asked, looking around at the stalactites hanging from the ceiling. "Uhh...a cavern," she looked up, "maybe with a stream or...I don't know...like, uhh...plumbing for an old castle...above u?" "I wonder if they knew this was down here." Remington looked around, being mesmerized by the natural decor. Without looking, he ran into a large crystal pillar, that jutted from the cavern floor to the ceiling, seemingly imperfectly. The pillar was light blue and indigo and had luster. He could see his reflection in it. "What the-?" Moonlight liked what she saw. She knew that there were crystals all over the place near the treehouse and castle and that meant they weren't too far off. Or at least, that's what she hoped for. "Looks like, umm, one of those crystals that the others described!" She sad excitedly, tapping her hoof gently around it and admiring the two of them as best she could in its reflection. "Pretty hot stuff, ain't it?" "Others? What others?" Remington wasn't keen on the information that Moonlight might had overheard. For a filly from out of town, she seemed to know an awful lot about this kind of stuff. "Oh, Gallus, Sandbar, those ones." "Oh." Remington for moment wondered if Moonlight had been spending quality time with other students, and for just a small second, he felt jealous. But he continued on through the tunnel, which seemed to get narrower. At one point, the tunnel forked in two directions. When glanced down the left one, and then the right one, and quickly the left one again. "Princess Twilight Sparkle?" He could not see anypony except Moonlight behind him, but he could have sworn that he had. She had a feeling like she was being watched, but then again, they did know that they were sharing this space with disgusting, icky rats so it didn't shock her. "What about her?" She asked as she started to nudge him to the right. "I could have sworn I saw her down that way, but then she dissappeared." Remington stared in confusion. "Let's go this way." "Ooooh, spooky," she said lightly and then giggled. "Maybe you're having some radical hallucinations. Like, what else do you see? Is it another pretty mare?" She asked as she trotted along, happy to tease her prey. Remington could feel the banter coming from his companion behind him, but he remained focused on figuring out what he saw, and how they were going to get out of there. The tunnel kept turning left and inclining slightly, almost like a spiral staircase with no stairs. Eventually, they met a wooden door. Remington reached for the door handle to open it but hesitated. He looked back. "Should I open it?" Remington didn't want to be the sole pony responsible if this ended up unleashing a thousands years of curses onto Equestria. She thought about it for exactly one moment. "Duh. Totally!" She encouraged him. There had to be less muck and grime, right? Remington put his hoof on the door and slowly opened it. Once fully opened, he walked into a room that had crystal walls and gemstones that lit up the area. He carefully tiphoofed through the first room and looked into the other rooms connected to it. The second room he went into had a large billboard with photos on it. The photos were ones of students, but mostly of Silverstream, Gallus, Yona, Ocellus, Sandbar, and Smolder. "What is this place? Is this their home? I thought they lived on campus." They were here! She'd heard so much about this from some of the other students, even a little from the professors. Mostly the students- specifically, those six who had helped save Equestria. "Ooh. This is their, like, magical treehouse that grew from the remains of the Tree of Harmony! Oooh, we found it," she then giggled with a certain playful viciousness. "Think they'll be upset?" "Magical treehouse?" Remington was so confused. He was not privy to this information, and he began wondering if he was to get a magical treehouse if he received good enough marks on his tests, or if he saved the world from a small menacing filly, you know, either/or. He trotted more playfully into the next room and heard a swoosh. He froze. "Who goes there!?" Silverstream jumped out of no where and in front of them holding a shovel. She relaxed her posture, dropped the shovel and looked at both of them, particularly perplexed at Remington. She scratched her head. "What are you doing here?" "Silverstream, did you get those anemones?" Gallus asked as he flew in, sweaty from that time spent gardening, little gardener's gloves on his talons and paws. He was wiping sweat away when he saw the guests. He froze for a moment before quickly whipping the gloves away. "You saw nothing," he said darkly before his eyes shot quizzically. "And...yeah, what are you doing here?" "Uhhh...well, uhmm, we were, like, exploring and...like...were you gardening?" "Moonlight and I wanted to explore so we came here. It was her idea mostly." Seeing as no adult was present to award any punishment, he realized shifting blame was not necessary, especially on the filly who hung on his heart. "But I helped a lot. We can leave if you need us to leave." "It's okay. It's just, we've never gotten visitors out here, other students are too scared to come, and Gallus and Smolder would probably prefer us to not invite anyone over anyway." Silverstream suggested openly. "You know, because it's our special place. We still live at the school, we just come here every now and then to do uh," Silverstream looked at the gardening tools. "Stuff! You know, uh, spend quality time with each other." She looked at Gallus, hoping she was helping divert his humiliation. Moonlight nodded. "Yeah, I got him to come here, sorry. I'm just, like, persuasive that way I guess," she laughed nervously, then shrugged. "Though, I mean, he did lead me down into a dirty trap so it wasn't all fun and games I guess...," she trailed off as she looked at the gardening supplies. "So, like, why anemones?" She asked. Gallus ignored. "Yeah, it is our special place. Ours. We earned it. And...I mean," he looked over at Silverstream and huffed, "it's not that I don't want guests though...I mean I don't...but you should really ask instead of just barging in like this. It's pretty freakin' rude," he said in a huff, slicking back his feathers. "As for anemones, its because they're pretty. And because I guess some sort of rare moth species likes them?" "Oooh. So you do pay attention in Professor Fluttershy's classes, you blue devil you!" Moonlight said teasingly and accusing at the same time. Gallus blushed slightly and rubbed his neck. Remington got tense slightly seeing Moonlight flirt with Gallus a little, but relaxed when Silverstream got close to him. She began whispering something in his ear and took a few moments. Remington blushed. Silverstream nodded and stepped away. "Uh, Moonlight, heheh, I think we should leave. These two have to get back to their," Remington looked at Gallus, who had dirt on his neck feathers. "Garden." He started happily trotting towards the front door of the treehouse. What were they whispering about? Why did he blush? What was happening? She shook her head free. "Oh. Yeah. Yeah! Gotta get out, haha. Well, now we know where this place is. Like, just past the cavern, via a trap," she turned to Silverstream. "Unless we can come back through...like, the front door next time?" "Hm hm." Silverstream nodded. "If we ever plan a party or something, we'll invite you two!" Silverstream was gracious to the freshmare, but she honestly hadn't thought too much about these ponies. She didn't know them very well, but maybe in time she would. Remington led Moonlight out the front door and gave the owners of the home their privacy back. He waited for Moonlight to join next to him. She trotted to him with a bright smile. "See, that was-" "YOU SAW NOTHING!" The blue bird yelled as a reminder. "-easy!" The door behind them slammed friendlily. Remington sighed and smiled back at Moonlight. He leaned into her and kissed her on the lips with conviction, his eyes closed during for effect. A few seconds later he let go and looked into her eyes. "Glitzy." He said rhetorically. It caught her unawares, when he came in for a kiss. Not that she hated it. Opposite. She loved it, so much so she slipped in a tongue near the end. "Remmy," she giggled affectionately. Remington started walking out of the ruins, leaning onto Moonlight as they both made their way back through the Everfree. The darkness and creepy noises would attempt to impede his emotions, but his heart would motivate him to continue without fear until they were both safe. Characters by: @Hippogriff: Remington, Silverstream @SteelEagle: Moonlight Glitter, Gallus
  4. It'd been a matter of some months of traveling south into Equestria on hoof before he found anything of interest. It would have been faster if there was another form of transportation, but Sombra had not yet learned of the train- he had only ever seen the odd tracks of wood and metal, crossed during part of his travels. Equestria, Sombra came to notice, was terribly bright and sunny, made up of great swaths of untouched wilderness with pockets of civilization. The first place he finally stumbled upon was a lively, sprawling town. The architecture of the buildings and the material that made them up looked entirely alien to Sombra's eyes, having only ever seen the Crystal Empire. Pale walls, wood trim, and yellow straw-thatched roofing. The ponies, on the other hoof, were nothing new; the only difference was that they didn't have the shine that the crystal ponies had. They were bright and pastel, but dull. Dull, like him. It might've been a nice change, if the mere sight of ponies hadn't set him on edge. It was after some quiet backpedaling that Sombra decided to skirt the edge of the town, wandering in between the scattered buildings and studying what he could see thus far without drawing attention to himself. Or so he believed. It was still, entirely possible that ponies had seen him, and some no doubt still saw him, lurking on the edges like a wolf watching a flock of sheep. For the first time in a very, very long time, King Sombra found himself at an utter loss of what to do. He was still weak. No throne, no crown, and no position of power. He couldn't take what he needed by force, and not in Equestria- if the royal sisters got wind that he still lived, they'd certainly come after him. The thought of being locked away again in some other manner of prison by their hooves filled him with fear, and he hated it. After Sombra had gotten to see a little of this town of ponies, he withdrew towards the dark forest that seemed to border part of it. Having no knowledge of what it was or its history, the only thing that he saw in it was temporary refuge. A place to linger until he had some sort of idea, some sort of plan, on how he would deal with entering this town. If anypony dared follow, he might not see them; he was too wrapped up in his own thoughts, for the moment.
  5. It was early morning, about Four Am when a heavy wagon rolled into the Everfree Forest. Choosing a clearing that was apparently safe, Rune Writer stepped out of the wagon and put a crystal down. A bolt of magic to the crystal, and the crystal had grown to a fully sized tent for him to stay in for tonight. While he did have more amenities in the wagon, he didn't want to waste the magical power if he didn't need to. This was why he often saved the enchantments of the wagon, leaving them off unless he needed them. Sighing as he looked around the Everfree he remembered stories he had been told when he was younger, of how dangerous the Everfree was. Well he'd find out for himself if the place was so dangerous and if so deal with it. After all he had an assortment of magical weapons, his wagon and an arsenal of spells of Harmonic, Dark and Chaos Magic at his disposal. Surviving a few hours before he went into Ponyville shouldn't be that hard, right? In all honesty, it had been a rough trip from the Frozen North here, and Rune was looking forward to meeting the Princess whom Shadow had given the Red Sun Sword to and taking it back from her. It was a family heirloom, and was supposed to stay in the family.
  6. [colour=#339999]"Let us now recall the not so long ago day~♪[/colour] [colour=#339999]Celestia's sun shone bright as the ponies did play~♫ All was quiet and all was calm in fair Ponyville~♪ Yet when night did fall, it brought with it great ill~♫ Nightmare Moon's arrival heralded night time eternal~♪ And so Equestria did come to fear a lifetime nocturnal~♫ Hope it was soon lost for each stallion and mare~♪ Until six stepped forth to throw off the fiend's snare~♫ Into the Everfree forest these brave fillies did ride~♪ Determined to find a means to change the grim tide~♫"[/colour] [colour=#000000]Eerie sounds abounded in the dark depths of the Everfree forest as they ever did. In one small section of the dark woods, however, these sounds were drowned out by the honeyed sounds of a lyrist, singing and playing at her lyre. She was Lyra Hearstrings, and in truth she had no real purpose in coming to this fearsome place. She had been strumming her lyre somewhere at the outskirts of Ponyville, when her eyes fell upon a beautiful large bird she hadn't ever seen before. On a whim, she had decided to follow it, even as it ventured into the forest. [/colour] [colour=#000000]Unfortunately, she had quickly lost sight of the fair bird. She had started to play and sing in an effort to maybe bring it back to her, but it proved to be in vain. Thinking she might stumble upon it again and propelled by her wanderlust, Lyra trekked deeper in, playing and singing as she ambled along. She remained focused mainly on her song, not paying her surroundings very much mind. Music had a way of capturing Lyra's mind, wresting it away from where it should be. At that moment, practicing her lyric recounting the tale of the arrival of Nightmare Moon at the Summer Sun Festival was what had her attention. [/colour] [colour=#339999]"The villainous mare appeared to disparage and deceive~♪ But not one of these brave six from her duty did weave~♫ Friendships did blossom amid those dark hours~♪ And yet all looked lost to Nightmare Moon's powers~♫ The six Elements of Harmony then did come to appear~♪ And with their strength the six cast off the shadow of fear~♫ Nightmare Moon was gone, a thing of the past~♪ And sweet Princess Luna was herself again at last~♫ The long day it was won and all was set right~♪ Once more Equestria could enjoy Celestia's light~♫"[/colour] [colour=#000000]As she finished her song, Lyra put her lyre aside for a moment.[/colour] [colour=#339999]"Huh...?"[/colour] [colour=#000000]she started as she looked around, taken aback by what she found. It was dark and she was surrounded by rather spooky looking trees. Fear crept onto the mare's face in the form of a too-wide grin as for a brief moment she wondered if the Nightmare Moon from her song had somehow returned. Her knees trembled and nearly buckled as she soon realized she was just deep in the Everfree forest, not that that was any the more fortunate. She had really wandered too far this time. Gah... what would Bonbon say? She was sure she'd poke fun at her. She always was so absent minded, getting roped into trouble like this.[/colour] [colour=#000000]The howl of timberwolves in the distance struck her ears then.[/colour] [colour=#339999]"Ahh!"[/colour] [colour=#000000]Lyra started, her eyes flying wide open. She needed to get out of here. She started to back up slowly, not sure just how close the danger was. Then all at once, she turned around and began to rush ahead at full gallop in the direction she had come. Her escape was abruptly impeded however, when she crashed headlong into something and was thrown forcefully back. [/colour] [colour=#339999]"Ugh... er..."[/colour] [colour=#000000]Lyra started in mild pain from the ground, struggling to lift herself back up. Only then did her eyes trace forward and she came to notice that the object she had collided with had hooves as she did.[/colour] [colour=#339999]"Oh,"[/colour] [colour=#000000]she started blankly before, forming a full smile.[/colour] [colour=#339999]"Sorry about that, I didn't know anypony was there. I'm Lyra,"[/colour] [colour=#000000]she said with awkward enthusiasm as she lifted her head to examine this other pony.[/colour]​
  7. There is no doubt amongst bronies that Lauren Faust is a genius. The foundation of lore she laid was so superb. One of my favorite things about the universe she created is the Everfree Forest, a mysterious biome of overgrown flora and fauna that the ponies can't control. Whether or not it's true that the plants grow by themselves is a strange occurrence in the ecosphere of Equestria, it creates this really interesting perspective from a land of ponies that control everything, even the weather. Perhaps their planet doesn't rotate, thus they need celestial aide and artificial weather patterns. Maybe their world isn't even a planet. Maybe there isn't even a vacuum of space. Luna did, after all, spend a thousands years on the moon, or in the moon. Whatever. The point is, the concept of a place like the Everfree creates an interesting perspective of something shrouded in so much mystery, while at the same time requires the attention of the story. The forest a bringer of life. And despite its dangers, Ponyville's existence owes tribute to the dark and dreary Everfree. Episode 9: Bridle Gossip Evil Enchantress (Electro House Remix) SimGretina Show Remix (Techno) Fluttershy's singing of Pinkie's "Evil Enchantress Song" in her deep voice is one of the most brilliant moments of the show. So why do all of those remixes online only feature Pinkie's hyper version? I don't understand it. The reason why I value SimGretina's remix more for this song is because he used Fluttershy's deep voice to impact a great contrast throughout the drops. This is the type of song that intensifies it when you listen with headphones or ear-buds. SimGretina is probably my favorite brony musician, and will undoubtedly be featured several times on this blog. The way he balances his music is probably what makes it so great. The art of his remixes seem to be to take whatever song he's remixing and allow the song to exist as is, and form things around it to enhance the sound. Other remixes like to manipulate the original by speeding it up, or changing the pitch dramatically. Sim Gretina is like a music archaeologist. He takes songs and digs up characteristics about the song you didn't realize were there before, and enhances them to make them sound better and louder. SimGretina deserves a click every time you see a link to one of his remixes or original works. And when you do try one of his random songs, his sounds have a way of destroying everything you thought you knew about a song and making it better, so... watch out. Episode 10: Swarm of the Century https://soundcloud.com/brownpony/future-of-the-everfree Future of the Everfree BrownPony Ambient Instrumental So yeah, here's one most people haven't heard of. I always enjoy enlightening people to songs that are great that they haven't listened to yet. This one, by a brony named BrownPony, is mostly ambient, but plays a very good instrumental style theme. All of the enchantments of the Everfree forest, all of its creatures, the parasprites maybe. They all sing this song in their sleep. I deeply imagine a pony with a talent for listening wandering into the forest and hearing this ambiance and beat. The trees clapping and bellowing its anthem, not so much as scary, as overwhelmingly mysterious. Some bronies fantasize ponies in space, or space travel in Equestria. Well, why not the Everfree? It's practically like the big oceans of the deep. The ponies, who are very ritualistic and rely on magic, seem to know more about what lies in the secrets of the sky and stars, than they do about they're own backyard wooded area. It's known as a place of death, but then why is there so much life there? Why were the palaces located here? And what story will be told about how the Everfree came to be? Hopefully, the near future of events in the Everfree will unlock those secrets we all desperately desire to know.
  8. What would Nightmare Night be without a trip through the Everfree Forest? Travel along the dimly lit path, through the shadowy woods. Not to worry though, Princess Luna has enchanted the way to the old castle, protecting all who stay within the light. However, there may be a few brave adventurers hiding just behind a tree or bush, waiting to scare those who pass by, willing to risk their own safety for a spooky prank. Be sure not to step off the path in fright!
  9. ~Hot...~ If there was one word that Snowdrift would use to describe this place it was that. For three days now the caribou had been making his way through the forest since leaving the badlands. He had yet to meet anything capable of sentient thought and frankly that was rather disappointing. Snowdrift had been hoping to meet others like him, others who could speak, who could think, others the caribou could learn from. ~Instead I get colorful plants and oppressive heat~ he thought silently to himself. The Everfree forest was nothing like the frigid tundra from which Snowdrift hailed. Where the tundra was cold this forest was much too hot. In the tundra life struggled to survive and here plants and animals seemed to thrive easily, Snowdrift could not begin to count the different kinds of plants and animals that he had seen (not for lack of trying, Snowdrift lost count at about 58. "I hope she is ok," he muttered silently, it was the first words Snowdrift had spoken in days. He was refering to his sister, Glacial Eir. Back home to pair had been inseparable. He only hoped that she was safe and sound with the tribe and had not foolishly gone out to look for him. It was a miracle that Snowdrift was standing here now. By all accounts he should be dead after a fall into the frigid glacial waters that ran through his home. Instead something had decided his life was worth saving and Snowdrift had awoken some time later in this strange land far from home. Stopping for a moment the caribou took look at his surroundings. In every direction trees seemed to spread giving the area a slightly menacing quality, but other than that it was quiet... Too quiet... Standing still the caribou listen carefully in the hopes of hearing the source of whatever had caused the forest to go silent. Of course to any idle observer Snowdrift appeared like any other animal within the forest with no obvious indicators to show that he was much more intelligent than any common deer one might find within these woods.
  10. "Have you heard about the monster lurking in the depths of Everfree?" a mare gossiped idly to a nearby friend. "You're gonna need to be a touch more specific..." the other mare started with a laugh. "Far as I hear that forest is full of nothing but creepy monsters." The first mare shook her head. "No, this one is different. It's something new. Word is that it's twice as big as an Ursa Minor with the voracious hunger of a timberwolf and cunning nearly on match with a griffon!" she said in a boisterous. "Yeah right. Nothing like that could be out there. You're just tryin' to scare me," the second mare shouted "It's true, believe me. Word is that any foolish enough to wander too close to the forest these days gets snatched up by the beast and disappears forever!" the first mare started. Unbeknownst to the two mares, a short distance behind them, listening in was a young filly. Ardent Fate was her name, and unlike most fillies with homerwork, colts and cutie marks as their primary concern, this little filly had other ambitions. In her head, young Fate was a valiant knight, destined for greatness. She wandered through Equestria, hoping to spread her knightly virtues throughout the land. Usually it didn't go exactly well, but the filly was hopeful that this place would prove different. "I shall slay this loathsome beast!" Fate announced as she suddenly stepped forward. "Wha-? Who...?" the first mare started, surprised to see the filly. "What are you talking about, little filly?" the second spoke, her head tilted. "The monster. I leave now to claim its fleeting life upon my valiant blade!" Fate shouted out, skipping ahead. "Wait, that thing isn't real, is it?" the second mare spoke, nodding toward the city. "Hey, kid! I don't know where you found that, but it's not a toy!" Fate immediately started to run away. She hated it when adults eyed her sword like that. "I shall return once the beast has been slain!" she announced. "Hey, wait!" the mare called after her, looking worried. "She's just playing around," her friend said, shrugging. "She'll come back on her own." "Yeah... I guess..." the other mare started. Meanwhile, Fate continued forward undeterred, moving in the direction of the Everfree forest. SHe was pretty sure that nopony was following her, but maybe, perhaps she was wrong.
  11. It was a less than prepossessing pair of structures that stood in this particular clearing in the Everfree Forest. The larger of the two was a stone cottage containing a surprisingly large collection of books and lab equipment currently out of use. The smaller was rather less sturdy than the cottage, a workshop of some sort judging from appearance. The reasoning behind it's light construction and the storage of most of the equipment in the main structure rather than within was soon to become apparent. It was within the latter that Tibbles could be found at the moment, stooped over a desk before a small window as he takes some notes with a pencil grasped in his mouth. His preliminary notes completed, he nudges a pair of brass rimmed goggles over his eyes and gets to work. An hour later the earth pony dashes from the door of the workshop and dives behind a nearby log. Scant moments later something in the workshop touches off, causing a gout of flame to erupt from the door and windows. Tibbles seems to panic for a moment but recovers quickly, galloping over to the cottage to grab a water hose just as the lab's roof catches and attempting desperately to put it out.
  12. Sierra smirked slightly at the mare's words. She gave a shrug. Totally avoiding any excitement would disappoint her adventuring spirit, even if it would be to her benefit to not come face to face with danger. Any degree of failure might effect her reputation in a bad way, after all. She wasn't really sure what to say if anything on the matter, so she turned to the other point. "Well, I'm not that far from full maturity and I'm this size," she said in a low, casual voice. "I'm fine with it though. Even if I don't ever get as giant as some of us, I got speed and mobility this way." The dragon gave a slight nod and continued along with the pony. She noticed the magic Northern Lights was using to keep the magic off of them. Dragon scales were resistant to extreme temperatures, so it wasn't entirely necessary for Sierra's sake as it was the pony's own, but it was still impressive to her. She had always thought unicorn magic was cool, since her days as a hatchling with her friend Hammer Spark watching over her. She smiled a little at those thoughts and continued staring ahead. "But, anyway, lets cut through the bog then," she said steadily after a moment, cutting back to what the pony had been saying earlier. "You know where we're going. I'll just tag along and make sure we get there in one piece."
  13. It is early spring. Flowers peeked from the ground made wet by the rain, patches of snow disappearing under the sunlight. This is Far Glen. Deep within Everfree Forest, in a small meadow, lies a place of silence. But when the moon rises, howls radiate from the deep, and the wolves go out! Silent, pawsteps on soft earth, the wolves leave nothing behind but prints and nothing more. They are one with the forest, hunters who have been challenged by nature, and have succeeded! Their survival is important to the whole ecosystem! Without them, the wilds would crumple...but a strange force has come, threatening the wolves safety...
  14. Fluttershy brought her hooves to her mouth and gasped in shock as the poor raven fell over under the effects of her Stare. She quickly checked over the creature and determined that the poor birdie had just passed out. "Um, maybe I over-did it? She said to Angel, sheepishly. The raven's condition was good for one thing; Fluttershy was able to splint and bandage the injured wing without the bird trying to escape. Considering the bird's earlier behavior, Fluttershy flew up to her storage attic and found a large bird cage. She normally didn't keep any of her animal friends in cages, but she was afraid this raven would try to escape otherwise and injure herself further. She put fresh water and seeds in the cage, then carefully laid the bandaged avian on a bed of shredded paper at the bottom. Fluttershy stood watching the raven for several minutes. She had rarely had this much trouble with a patient. Most animals instinctively seemed to trust her, even the wildest and strangest creatures from the Everfree Forrest. The only thing that had come close to this raven's reaction was the disaster at last year's Gala... an event she really didn't want to think about. Sighing to herself, the yellow pegasus left the bird while she went to feed and care for the other animals around her cottage.
  15. ((Edit: This RP thread is a subzone and not a closing story-specific RP, so everypony can feel free to drop in and out as they'd please. Current synopsis is a visit by Dunder and Amity inside the shack/station itself. Feel free to join in!)) Nestled between the Everfree Forest and the Great Nimbusgait Lakes, due west of Cloudsdale, was a rather large shack. This was where Bronze Breeze made his home, of sorts, really just a waystation he built to use as part of his patrols near and over the Everfree forest to search for missing ponies. Eventually he hoped to have other ones along the Forest, and elsewhere, but for now this one would do. Bronze Breeze looked upon it, the wooden walls and door were sturdy enough, and he had enough supplies and furniture within to last, and take care of immediate medical emergencies. He sighs lightly before looking down at the oval shaped boulder beneath him, not overly large but it weighed about as much as the average Stallion. His medical saddlebags were over his back as he adjusted them by shifting his weight around a bit, before nodding to himself and using his legs to grasp the boulder, before beating his wings to lift himself off the air. He let himself get up to about ten feet off before he simply hovered there, not going anywhere in particular but getting his usual stamina exercise in. He'd likely be at this for quite some time unless he was interrupted by a traveler from the road that connected the main roadways in Equestria to his station.
  16. LightWind glided and landed softly without a sound on the grassy clearing in the outskirts of Everfree forest, not far from his hut. The indigo Pegasus then slipped off his saddlebag and gently placed it on the ground, letting his mind wander.. It had been a relatively good year by his standards, he’d finally found a job that he found tolerable and he might even say, stretched him just a wee bit. Performing with the Shadowbolts was much more liberating than the Wonderbolts; shows were smaller and while the crowds were more rowdy and less family orientated, they more likely to sit still, hearts in their mouths and gasp after the stunt was done. Much much more palatable than the near non stop noise from the crowd and party atmosphere that usually accompanied the Wonderbolts that usually irritated him to no end. Off season came and LightWind had taken the scenic route home from their last show, even making a detour to Cloudsdale to visit his parents. He did try to tell his parents exactly what he was doing, but when he mentioned that he’d been in his current job for about a year, they rest of his words were drowned out by a collective gasp from his parents and before he knew it he had been bear-hugged by both of them to the point of near suffocation and his train of thought repeatedly broken by them repeatedly alternating between how proud they were of him and relief at how their ‘useless son” finally finally made good. His next stop was the printers at Manehattan, who had printed the next batch of Shadowbols promotional material, normally the Wonderbolts had somepony run these errands for them but well the Shadowbolts was a leaner outfit with a much smaller budget and LightWind had this task dumped on him, being the only pony with seemingy the most free time. Thinking back on that, LightWind allowed himself a wry smile; the print shop pony had raved about how he was a secret Shadowbolts fan and how he was dying to meet them in the flesh not knowing that there was an actual live Shadowbolt standing right in front of him, except that particular Shadowbolt didn't often make it to press conferences, or at least not in any publicly recognizable form. LightWind laid out the leaflet and poster samples alongside some documents from the team manager regarding the upcoming season. He then settled down and reached into his other saddlebag, pulled out a few fresh oranges and started snacking slowly, one of the many enjoyable perks of having an actual well paying job. “I wonder when the rest will get here”, he thought as he scanned the sky lazily for any sign of his other teammates. “Team meeting and first practice of the new season is due to start in 15 minutes.”
  17. Princess Luna made her way through the darkness, her horn giving the only light to guide her way. The moon was out, and full, but here in the forest, it's light could not penetrate through the thick leaves of the trees. She wore a dark cloak over herself, though her dark pelt already made her nearly invisible without the light from her horn. It had a hood as well, but it was off, lying atop Luna's shoulders. It had been a long time since Luna had traveled along this path, and she found it difficult to find her way. Everfree had not always been like this—wild, untamed. When she and her sister had ruled here, everything was bright and full of life. Ponyville was one of the first towns to ever exist in Equestria, when she and Celestia were both very young. They'd ruled in the castle whose ruins still lay somewhere deep in the Everfree Forest. That was, before it was destroyed. But Luna had always had a favorite spot where she'd go to stargaze. She was one of the few who had ever bothered to notice the night sky. Sure, she had been the ruler over it, responsible for raising and lowering the moon—but that just made her appreciate it's beauty all the more. The thrill of seeing a shooting star, of observing the planets, watching a meteor shower... it was an entirely differently sky than Celestia's. Luna reached the edge the Everfree Forest, and Ponyville was in sight. But that wasn't her destination. She stayed along the edge of the forest, hoping nopony would spot her, as she made her way to her special place. She couldn't recall if Celestia had ever been here—after all, she was usually far too busy running the kingdom during the day to spend a night stargazing. And there it was. She'd built the treehouse in secret, somewhere she could go to be alone and observe the sky while watching over the ponies of Ponyville. It had remained unnoticed all these years, hidden among the other trees. It hadn't weathered or been destroyed, as Luna had enchanted it long ago to withstand just about anything. So it had remained untouched by pony or creature. Luna dug around in the undergrowth, searching for the correct rock. Though the stone was immovable by a normal pony, it could still be buried under dirt and leaves. Luna had to move it with her magic, to reveal the keyhole which would open for her horn only. It would open the entrance at the base of the tree, revealing the spiraling steps to enter inside. But it had been a long time since she'd been here, and she couldn't quite recall exactly where it was. It had her Cutie Mark insignia on it, a small sign that this particular area was 'hers'. Try as she might, however, it seemed that perhaps tonight was not the night she would be able to revisit her treehouse.
  18. Seeker looked up into the sky. The sun was high, and he had finally reached his destination. During his stay in Ponyville he had heard lots of rumours about this place, but now that he stood here, none of them seemed to come even close to the truth. In front of him lay the Moon Palace, or what was left of it. Not much was known about this place, because most ponies didn't want to be close to it. For him, this was a wondrous place. He could feel it in the air, this was a place of rich history. Recently, some ponies from Ponyville had recovered a set of old artefacts, the Elements of Harmony, from this place, but that didn't interest Seeker in the slightest. No, to truly fathom the past of this place, he would have to dig deeper. A place like this surely had libraries, and whole legions of scribes, and maybe even secrets, forgotten by time. He was almost shaking with anticipation now, just thinking of what might be buried here. 'But first thing's first.' he thought, looking around for a place to camp. "Up that slope, on that flattened piece of grass, that looks good" he said to the world in general. As always when he stood somewhere for too long, Blacky, his shepherd dog, came running up to him, sitting down in front of Seeker with an asking expression. "Come, boy." he began, trotting up the slope. "Let's build our camp." It was late autumn now, but it didn't look like rain. He wouldn't need his tent tonight. A few minute later he had a decent fire going, and sat there with his back to the fire, eating one of the rations he had packed. Behind him a slurping and gnawing sound told him that Blacky was enjoying his food, too. He would rest here for a moment, and then start examining the area, so he could start digging tomorrow.
  19. The Heartland The center of Greater Equestria, the Heartland region is a land of rolling hills, vibrant rivers, great forests, and vast lakes. Here lie the many various farms that supply much of Equestria's bounty, bustling cities where ponies learn, trade, and invent, and vast forests frequented by both naturalists and adventurers. Settlements of the Heartland Ponyville - A small, unassuming town in the middle of the Heartland surrounded by apple orchards and idyllic farms of all types, Ponyville is fairly typical of most Equestrian hamlets. It is the current residence of the bearers of the Elements of Harmony and thus has gained special attention from Princess Celestia in recent days. Trottingham - An affluent vacation town on the north shore of the easternmost Nimbusgait Lake. Many of the inhabitants of the town are seasonal, arriving during the summer months to live in their waterfront houses and enjoy fun in the sun. To the north of the city are picturesque vineyards, which only add to the upscale and touristy flavor of the place. Cloudsdale - Floating home to the Pegasi of the Heartland, Cloudsdale looms above the Nimbusgait Lakes. Here, pegasi work the Weather Factories, creating the different seasons, storms, and elements that allow the residents and greenery of Greater Equestria to flourish, and flight crews can often be spotted coming and going on a near-constant basis. Vanhoover - A resort oriented city nestled in the foothills of the Hasufel Mountains between the Everfree Forest and the Great Nimbusgait Lakes known for it's many outdoor opportunities for tourists, art scene, plentiful gardens, and general bohemian atmosphere. Major Natural Features Nimbusgait Lakes - The sparkling, pristine waters of the Nimbusgait Lakes are a prime feature of the northern reaches of Equestria’s Heartland. Trottingham is situated on lake shore property, feeding and housing the seasonal influx of tourists and athletes that come to play and train on the trails and beaches along the shores of the lakes. The Lakes supply Cloudsdale’s weather factories with water to make clouds and produce rainbows-- water that is eventually returned to the lakes by rains and runoff. Everfree Forest - Largely empty of ponyfolk, the Everfree Forest covers a massive swath of ground that is the full western third of the Heartland. The region is largely unexplored, though a few safe paths and trails are marked out. For the most part though, the Everfree Forest is home to all manner of creatures from the mundane to the mystical. Because of its sheer size, age, and legendary wildlife, nature is allowed to run its course unhindered by any form of pony magic of control. It is no surprise then that the ruins of the Moon Palace sit here, its crumbling halls now only home to the howling wind and hardy plants. The Velvet Strand - The center of the secretive and mysterious Peryton civilization, these isles are nothing short of irresistible in their tranquil beauty , and all who look upon them are awaited in feelings of contentment and joy. Everything that is built is designed to be fully integrated with the natural landscape to the point that from a distance, it looks as if there is no buildings at all. Other Geographical Features The Heartland is also home to Froggy Bottom, Equestria's largest swamp and home to its own share of legendary and strange magical creatures that lurk among the dark and misty foliage. The Hasufel Mountains, with its legendary tallest peak, Dragon Mountain, once an ancient home to many dragons, the mysterious empty caves of which, still exist. Finally the tall Allacor Mountains, which separate the Heartland from the Borderlands beyond, which only the most adventurous and daring ponies climb the remote peaks of.
  20. Sunny grinned in response to what Bramble said, and he thought about... 'you have to love the flower' he'd definitely keep it in mind when he went back to his pot of daisies. Looking over at his sister he sighed as she wasn't even paying attention to them. It was hard to tell if she was just ignoring everypony or really interested in her book. Either way Sunny wanted her to pay attention to their new house guest and his horn glowed brightly as Holly's book floated away from her. He giggled and watched her get frustrated "Come on, say hi for real Holly". "Hey!" Holly yelled, not realizing exactly what happened. She really had been lost in her book, not trying to be rude. That caused her to miss the whole part of the conversation where Lily invited him to stay over. She got up quickly and almost knocked poor little Poof from where he was sitting happily. The little cat decided to get away from what looked like it was about to be a war zone and trotted over to Lily and Bramble. As Poof got next to Bramble he started nuzzling his face and his fluffy sides against the purple leg that was new and interesting to him. When Holly saw the book floating near her brother she gave him a half smile, and than he asked her to say hello. Rolling her eyes a bit she looked over to Bramble and said "Hi... sorry... that was a really good book, the one currently floating over by my brother. I'm Holly, but you already heard that." she glared at Sunny again, silently asking him to give her book back. Lily giggled a little at the whole exchange, it's been a challenge to learn the twins dynamic and get use to their teasing each other. Before the two of them had moved in she'd only seen them on brief trips to Fillydelphia or when the family came to visit her, only a few times a year at most. They were a lot to handle but she loved having them, they brightened up her days and were never any real trouble. When Bramble spoke to her she looked back at him "Dear, don't worry about it you've been lovely and I have no doubts that you'll help out with the business. Now if you'll follow me inside I'll show you around." and with that Lily stepped inside the house.
  21. It was midday when Strawberry Blossom finished exploring the town; on getting back to her hut she shoved off her full saddle bags and replaced them with empty ones. Her purchases could be put away later; for now, it was time to explore. She had been looking forward to this all her life, after all! Everfree Forest was easily visible from her hut; she stood a long moment to admire it before setting off at a brisk trot, broad hooves churning up dirt and head and tail held high. This was going to be amazing! She sighed happily as she passed into the cooler shade of the forest, looking around curiously; only a few steps in and she was already seeing plants she didn't recognize! That might be a problem, she realized belatedly; maybe she should have looked around for a book on the forest when she passed by that library. Well, there was always tomorrow. For now, she was finally setting hoof inside the forest she'd been hearing about for years, and she wasn't about to turn back now. "Wonder if it's true you can hear 'em grow," she mused aloud before addressing the plants directly. "Afternoon, everyone! Sorry I don't know everyone's name yet. I'm a little new here, haha." She grinned, scuffing a hoof along the forest floor. "But I'm happy to be here, so if you don't mind me looking around I'd like to at least get to know the outskirts." A brief pause, and she moved forward again as if she'd heard permission, tail swishing happily.
  22. Rook Argent Rook pumped his legs harder, going from hard trot to full-on gallop. The ancient trees of the forest blew past him, a twisted kaleidoscope of leaves, branches, fireflies, and moonbeams. Deeper and deeper into the forest he ran, not seeming to slow down one bit, until finally he arrived. The branching trail opened up into a large clearing, easily the size of Ponyville town square, filled only with knee-high meadow grass. Rook stepped into the pool of moonlight, breathing deep lung-fulls of night air. The grey unicorn shivered against the chill. He was free of his usual appointments; no cloak, no saddlebags, no knife, and most strikingly of all, no shemagh. In the glint of moonlight, he hardly looked equine at all, the smooth coat that grew in place of a mane giving him an almost reptilian profile. The unicorn stopped as he arrived at the center of the clearing. With a deep breath, he closed his eyes and concentrated. His horn began to glow a faint blue, growing in intensity as he reached out with his mind to grasp the invisible threads of aether that pervaded Equestria. A glowing line of bluish-purple swept Rook's body from horn to tail, vanishing just as quickly as it had appeared. Rook gritted his teeth against what he knew was coming. His skin began to itch as bony, jet-black nodules began to grow over top of his coat. Barely the size of pinheads at first, the small bumps grew quickly, expanding into interlocking scales not unlike those of a black dragon. The pearlescent scales shimmered in the glow of the moon as they continued to grow. His horn took on the sheen of polished steel and his hooves could have passed for cast iron. His eyes glazed over with a smoky grey film that fluoresced blue under the sudden charge of aether. Finally, his white tail shriveled up, replaced by a stout dragonscale bob. The transformation was complete. Inside his adamantine shell, Rook exhaled slowly, the blast of breath coming as a muffled sigh through the arcane firewall between his mind and body. He rotated his shoulder joints and cracked his neck, testing his mobility by stomping around in the gently waving grass. Everything seemed to be in order. The armored unicorn closed his eyes for a moment before beginning. Almost faster than the eye could follow, he lunged forward with his horn, a lethal blow to an imaginary enemy. Rook flicked his horn as if slashing a foe across the chest, then did an abrupt about-face, digging his metallic hooves into the soft earth to gain traction. Two steps later, he was away, charging quickly in the opposite direction. His heart pounded in his chest in sync with the rhythm of his hooves against ancient earth. 'I kept my promise,' Rook grunted as he spun around and delivered a swift buck with his hind legs to another imaginary foe. The unicorn stopped as his hind hooves hit the ground with a resounding crash, making the meadow grass ripple outwards as if he'd just stomped the surface of the water in a pond. In the still of the deep forest, the sound seemed to echo forever, both in his ears and his heart. The unicorn's next breaths came through labored and ragged. It never got any easier. Certainly he was strong of body and even stronger of mind. He had fought Griffons, manticores, bears, wolves; matched wits with crime kingpins, drill sergeants, even a Griffon patriarch. He knew he was strong. Why, then, did he feel so weak? 'I'm sorry,' he whispered.
  23. Strawberry Blossom had been in the forest for hours on her first day alone, and she loved it. She had meant to leave by sunset of course. No sense pushing things on the first day. Then she had noticed some plants stirring as if getting ready to bloom. Night blooming plants! How exciting! She had spent hours hunkering wide-eyed, staring at and gently coaxing the blossoms as they slowly opened. Some ponies probably though the process of a flower bud opening was boring; Strawberry Blossom didn't, and it was even more fascinating to realize that nopony had planted or cultivated these. They just... happened. They were beautiful, and the fact that she'd never cultivated night bloomers, never seen their buds open, made it even more special. And then she heard the muttering. Strawberry Blossom's ears perked sharply and she stood, looking around. She'd heard a few rumors about the strangeness of the forest - and it was undeniably strange - but could the tales of hauntings and headless horses and so on be true too? Of course not. She tipped her ears back, swishing her tail in slight annoyance at herself, and trotted determinedly toward the mutterings. All right, so she slowed and crept forward as she got close - that was just caution, right? Caution was good! Strawberry blinked as she saw the moon-touched pegasus, spotting her just in time to hear the groan followed by the complaint. The moonlight falling on the pegasus made her look more than a little ethereal, and ghosts were ghosts because they were missing something, right? Get a hold of yourself, Berry. She came cautiously forward to address the stranger, voice low. "Scuse me, Miss Ghost, but what was it you were looking for? I could help maybe." 'Miss Ghost'? Why did I say that? She lowered her head in embarrassment, just peeking up through her bangs at the pegasus and hoping she wasn't offended.
  24. ·.·• Neon Pop •Ã‚·.· "Aleeejaaaandroooo?!" Screamed the all to bright pop star, as she trudged through the muck and thick foliage of the Everfree forest. Shockingly, Neon wasn't dressed in anything outlandish, no sunglasses, today, Neon was a regular looking pony, well despite the bright neon colors. Her orange orbs started to fill with tears as she called for her trusted pet alligator. "Alejandrooo? Where are you?! Why did you leave me?!" Neon hic-sniffled, clipping her hoof on an uprooted root and fell face first into the marsh like muddy ground with a splatter. Those glowing lights on her legs dimmed and her cutie mark flickered as it it was a read neon light. Just... what happened to bring her here? The morning started out just fine. Nothing out of the ordinary anyway, Neon got up, took a nice relaxing bath, read the paper, ate breakfast, and jotted down some songs. Though she had been so busy lately recording, Neon really wasn't paying attention to anything else, and to one particular pet, it started to get on his last nerve. Unlike for Neon, Alejandro's week didn't start off like any other. It started off with him waking, dragging his fat self to her room, and awaiting the usual "Good morning my widdle, scawy, fatty gator!" but... it never came. Neon was so wrapped up with her work, she took care of herself, quickly fed him and went to record. All he got, and had been getting was a hoof pat on his head. At first it was something he decided to let slide, least she was feeding him. Though when he followed her around practically begging with those sinister eyes of his for her to cuddle him, and she ignored it, that was when he started to draw the line. She wasn't swimming with him in their massive pool, she wasn't sun bathing with him, no mud baths, no working on lyrics atop his back, nothing! It was food tossed to him and leave. So by the end of the week, Alejandro snorted as he watched her go on and on figuring out a song, and turn tail, and left. This morning though started out fine for Neon Pop, that was till after breakfast when she looked to her side expecting Alejandro, and not seeing him. Curious, she walked around the house, calling for the beast, looking in his usual spots, growing more and more worried that she was unable to find him. It was when she looked out side, and saw Alejandro's footsteps in the thick green grass, heading out of her back yard. She screamed and immediately took off, following the trail the giant lizard left behind, only until his tracks vanished deep in the heart of Everfree. Which puts us to where Neon is now, knee deep in mud and muck, dragging her now matted tail behind her, sobbing and calling for her best friend. She wasn't quiet about searching for him, oh no. She was making as much a ruckus as she could, despite the evil eyes on her through the bushes. She took to searching the swamp, only cause... well where else would a gator go? Only proplem was, the further she got the harder her hooves were sticking in the mud. "Al-e-jan-drooo...! Pleeeeaaase?!" Neon cried desperately, though she let out a sharp shriek, and fell chest high in the mud. Neon though wasn't real t.v. friendly so she never saw episodes of Stallion Grylls and how to get your self out of sticky situations such as quick sand, or things of the like. So... naturally, she started to squirm and struggle. However... her cries for her friend, quickly vanished and turned to pleas. "Somepony!! Oh my pony stars... Somepony help me!! Ugh!! HEEELP!"
  25. Why had he listened to that big doofus Champ? Stupid overgrown poison joke face! When the tiny pegasi foal had made the correct assumption of the jock colt's faux emotional state and questioned his actual courageousness after the aqua foal had boasted quite fruitfully of his own endeavours, having most of the schoolyard herd on his shoulder and drooling like numb minded bunnies about how he 'allegedly' braved a whole night in the Everfree Forest. As the small male's hooves clumped messily into the undergrowth, making insects and small beasties scatter he reared and silently cured himself. He shouldn't have said anything. He should've just stuck to the background and not opened his chops when that stupid bully opened his. With the star patterned blanket draped over his back and markless tooshy like a makeshift cape as he wandered through the arcs of looming branches that blotted out the moonlight to make sharp streaks of black across the forest floor and his pale hide. It was like something out a bedtime story. The forest of gloom and doom. Nervously biting his lip at the slightest rustle of the surrounding area he found himself just a pale blot in a dark area, mentally kicking himself in the tiny behind. The next time he's threatened to step hoof into Everfree by penalty of pummeling, he wanted a random donkey to fall from the stars and kick him. No...no he was being silly. Irrational even. It was just a small period of time. He'd be home soon, sipping some hot chocolate, eating marshmallows, reading his favourite book on constellations...he'd be fin- "KREEEEEEEEEEEEEE!" The falcon's cry nearly made him duck for cover right into a rock if he hadn't taken the easier option of instead, just running like a maniac.
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