Chapter 1: The Coming Curse
MLP:FiM Fan Fiction
By: Scy Storm
AUTHOR'S NOTES: Now I've done it, haven't I? Yeah I went and caught the MLP bug, and now I'm writing about it. I thought up a lot of cool things for this story and I simply must get them down in words. The show is great and its characters lend itself well to a stories like this, so hopefully it works! It'll also be my first multi-chapter effort in quite a while. I hope you all enjoy it, but I guess we'll see. I eventually intend to write more MLP stuff in the future, so if you are interested, keep track of me!
INEVITABLE DISCLAIMER: While most chapters of this story will be harmless, this story will feature violence and minor depictions of suffering. It won't be TOO intense, but if it all bothers you, then turn back. In addition, if you are not interested in MLP, you shouldn't bother reading the story either. Lastly, I don't read many MLP fics, but I'm sure the basic plot of this story has been done before. If you find this similar to any other MLP fic, I assure you it's a coincidence.
"So I guess this is the place."
"No, this is the OTHER big castle ruin of Everfree Forest."
The two ponies, shrouded in cloaks of fake leaves, climb their way to the top of a stone staircase, emerging in the ruins of a very large room. The floor sports many outlines of the large stone tile that make up its area. Huge stone pillars line the sides of the room, still holding up the ancient roof above. Many large windows allow the evening air to drift into the huge space, their glass having worn out long, long ago. The hoofsteps of the two visitors echo through the wide open area. "Wow... This must have been the ballroom," the female pony notes.
"Think of all the galas that must have been held here by the princesses so long ago," states the male companion.
"I don't think we're going to find anything here, though," the female notes.
"This trip wasn't about treasure hunting, just sightseeing," the male replies, glancing out what were formerly glass windows as he walks.
The two gradually make their way to the end of the giant room, where a raised platform awaits near the back wall. A small set of steps leads to an old, dilapidated throne sitting upon the platform. "Well I suppose this is where one of them sat during the galas. Definitely hasn't been taken care of, that's for sure," the male notes.
"Well, that's not a shocker, but... what's all this on the floor?" the female asks.
The two ponies look at the area of the floor in front of the throne, seeing shattered remains of unknown purple material. "I have no clue. This doesn't look very old. Did somepony break something here?" the male wonders.
"It doesn't really look like glass or anything. It almost feels like metal," the female notes, tapping one of the pieces a few times with her hoof.
Suddenly, a jolt of energy sparks from the piece, startling the pony into leaping backwards. The male gasps, and backs away quickly as more jolts of energy start to spark from the many pieces scattered on the floor. The two explorers stare in shock as the energy begins to resemble electricity, arcing between the broken objects, which slowly begin to melt into a deep purple, almost black mist. "W-What's going on?!" the female yells.
"Let's get out of here!" the male yells in answer.
The two turn tail and run full speed back toward the ballroom entrance, just as a shockwave of energy sends the dilapidated throne flying back against the nearby wall. Each piece of shattered metal becomes a cloud of mist, the many clouds swirling together in the air. The now singular cloud takes on a vague equine shape, the two fleeing ponies reaching the staircase as a terrifying yell bounces in a menacing echo across the walls of the giant room. The panicked trots of the fleeing ponies get faster, before gradually disappearing in the lower area of the ruins & the forest beyond. The equine of purple mist floats in place silently for a few moments, before eyes open wide upon its face, shining bright teal, irises shrinking to a slender, catlike appearance. The eyes glance around, taking in the sight of the ancient room and the orange-colored sky outside the windows. The venomous voice returns once more, this time in a sinister whisper.
"Good evening, Equestria..."
"This one might be the best I've tasted yet! I just don't know how you do it."
Twilight Sparkle takes another sip from the teacup magically floating in front of her, her face beaming with a smile of delight. A deep chuckle sounds out from the zebra Zecora, as he removes a large mixing stick from her cauldron. "Your joyful words toward my work make me smile. This was my first new tea in quite a while," Zecora replies to the joyous pony.
"A brand new recipe? Gee, you need to tell me the next time you do some experimenting, then. We'd love to be your taste testers again, right Spike?" Twilight says, looking at the baby dragon sitting at her side.
Spike grumbles a little as he stares at his mostly-full cup. "It's okay, I guess," he says.
He jerks to the side from a slight shove given by Twilight. "Spike!" she says, somewhat whispered.
"Oh, uh, I mean, it's great! I love it!" Spike suddenly shouts.
Spike abruptly dumps his entire cup of tea into his mouth, smiling widely with full cheeks. He glances up briefly at the glaring Twilight, and then manages to swallow the brew down, forcing an awkward grin for the zebra. Zecora lets out another deep chuckle. "Do not worry yourself, little dragon boy. It is okay if it is not what you enjoy," she says to him.
"Well I'm glad to hear that," Spike replies, giving his own glare back at Twilight.
Twilight laughs awkwardly and looks back up to Zecora. "A-Anyway, you really need to teach me some of these some time. I'd love to expand my recipes at home."
The zebra shakes her head as she walks a few feet from her cauldron. "As I have said before, my dear pony, my greatest secrets shall stay with me," she retorts.
"Yeah, I remember... but it was worth a shot, right?" Twilight asks.
"Nope, not really," Spike adds.
The pony flashes her dragon companion another glare, before noticing Zecora slipping into her brown cloak. "Oh! You're running out of ingredients, aren't you? I almost forgot about that," Twilight notes.
Zecora nods, slinging a sack over her back as Twilight & Spike stand up, the three of them leaving the hut. "More herbs I must get to fill my store. You two are welcome to help me find more," Zecora states, as she lowers her head, allowing her hood to slip down while her tail closes the hut door.
Twilight smiles, her eyes drifting upward to the orange sky above. "Thanks for the offer, Zecora, but it's getting late, and we still have things to do back at home. We'll go on a plant-gathering adventure with you another day," she says, cheerily.
"'We?' Speak for yourself, Twi, I'm not going any deeper into this creepy place," Spike says.
"Fine, fine. Then you can stay at home doing chores," Twilight replies, slipping her head underneath the baby dragon, lifting him up so he slides down her neck and lands on her back.
"Sounds good to me! Now, giddyup!" Spike says cheerily, as he grasps gently onto her mane and tugs.
Twilight can't help but sigh a little with a smile at her companion's antics. "So long, Zecora, and thanks again!" she says as she begins walking back toward the forest's exit.
"Good night and good tidings, my friend. Be safe in your journey to the forest's end," Zecora replies, as she takes off walking in the opposite direction.
Twilight smiles cheerily to herself, hearing Spike suddenly speak up after a moment. "Hey, Twilight?"
"Yes, my number one assistant?"
"Why DOES she talk like that?"
Twilight gives the dragon a weird look, before giggling. "I think some things are best left a mystery, Spike," she answers.
"So basically what you're saying is.... that you have no clue?"
"Yes, that is one way of putting it, Spike."
The dragon tugs on the pony's mane some more. "Come on, aren't you curious? You're curious about everything!"
Twilight grunts in annoyance from the tugging, as well as the general topic of discussion. "I really don't see why it's so import- Ahh!"
The pony cuts herself off with a sharp gasp as a cold breeze wafts from the woods behind her, sending a chill up her spine, leaving a confused Spike resonating with her shudder. Twilight turns her head and looks back at the dark woods behind her, Spike leaning over and eye-raising. "Uh, Twi? Is something wrong?"
"Did you feel that, Spike?"
"Huh? Feel what?" Spike asks, whipping his head around and looking around the immediate area.
Twilight stares intently back at the woods, a feeling of dread coming over her, though she's not sure why. Is something happening out there? She feels like she's had a feeling like this before, a good while ago. But when? She begins to consider going back to check on Zecora, before another sharp tug from Spike snaps her out of her trance. "Hey, Twilight! What is it?" he asks, worriedly.
Twilight shakes her head a bit and looks back forward, seeing the end of the forest and Ponyville beyond it. Perhaps it's best that she ignores this feeling for now. Zecora is resourceful, she can handle herself in the very forest she lives in. "N-Nothing, Spike. Just a weird feeling," she answers, beginning to walk again.
"A weird feeling? You were spaced out just now, and you're not even looking at a book," Spike notes.
"I'm sorry, Spike. Really, it's nothing," Twilight states, officially stepping out of the forest.
"Nothing? Come on, you're starting to weird me out."
"I think I'm just sleepy like you, that's all."
"Huh? I'm not slee-" Spike says, suddenly cutting himself off with a yawn, and then groaning. "Aw, now look what you made me do!"
Twilight can't help but laugh a little, slightly forcing it out as she looks forward, seeing Ponyville in the distance. She sighs softly and focuses on her journey home.
Zecora drops her slightly-full sack in front of a bush, her eyes drifting over its twigs, all sporting small off-white flowers. "Ah, one of my favorites in bloom. For this, I shall surely make room," she says to herself.
She nips her teeth down on one of the twigs, plucking it off of the bush easily and dropping it into her open bag. She begins to gently hum the tune of a nursery rhyme from her homeland, as twig after flowered twig drops into the sack. Suddenly, a cold breeze comes flowing through the area, causing the zebra to gasp and drop one twig onto the grass. Her eyes scan around the immediate area, which goes still again. Too still. She begins to notice the lack of wildlife in the area for the first time. Not a bird or furry creature in the trees. It's not late enough for the creatures to sleep yet, and the nocturnal ones should at least be showing their faces. Zecora takes a few steps away from her flowering bush and continues to intently scan the wilderness. Something is very wrong here. She takes a deep breath, and then closes her eyes with a sharp exhale. "The forest lies still preceding the night. Spirits of nature, grant me your sight," she speaks aloud.
The zebra's eyes remain closed as her mind's eye reaches out, scanning the surrounding forest with a mystic sight. Her normal vision was not deceiving her; the animals of the forest are missing. Her sight stretches farther, and she begins to see why. The animals in the forest are sleeping far too early, and most appear to have slept right where they fell, instead of getting back to their burrows or nests. The nocturnal animals should also be waking now, but instead they remain quiet. Zecora is starting to get quite worried at this unknown phenomenon. Then, as if responding to her growing emotion, her spirit sight begins to darken. A heavy fog begins to roll across the ground, some of it beginning to lighten and mist its way upward into the air. Zecora gets a sinking feeling, and turns her sight toward one direction, the pathway leading deeper into the forest. The fog is coming from there. In silence the zebra stares at the foggy pathway, considering whether or not she should go further. Suddenly, the fog parts, revealing a figure of a pony shrouded in shadow. Zecora considers saying something, but her voice shakes, and no words come out. The figure stands perfectly still and silent, before suddenly rushing forward, a bright teal eye completely filling the zebra's spiritual sight. "YOU!"
Zecora screams and opens her eyes, now viewing the normal forest again, her body turned and facing the pathway she just viewed in spirit sight. There's nothing there. No fog, no figure. Zecora knows better, however. Something malevolent lurks here, and it spoke to her just now, after doing something terrible to the wildlife. Her mind then centers on her friends who just left the forest, and the village they were heading back toward. If this thing is dangerous enough, then... The zebra makes up her mind, turning around and running full speed, leaving her bag of herbs & plants behind. "Darkness, evil, shadow, doom... I must warn the ponies soon!"
The zebra doesn't take very long to reach her hut again going at full speed, intent on passing right by it, but instead she skids to a stop when something catches the corner of her eye. The door of her hut is open. She most certainly closed it when she parted with her friends. Did they come back? Zecora worriedly rushes back into her hut, stopping and glancing around. There's no one inside. She immediately turns around to go back, but the hut door slams shut, causing her to gasp and stumble backward into her cauldron. An evil laugh is then heard, starting out quietly, then quickly growing in volume and practically echoing across the walls of the zebra's hut. "Zecoorrrrraaaa..." The voice says, the same as the one in the figure from moments ago.
Zecora gets back to a stable stance, her head whipping around, looking at all corners of her hut. There's nothing to be seen, nothing even out of the ordinary from how she left everything. "What is the meaning of this attack? Show yourself and I'll drive you back!" she yells.
The voice laughs loudly again, and begins to speak in a much clearer, feminine tone. "You're very skilled and resourceful, shaman. I'm afraid I can't let you spoil things for me. I have many plans."
Zecora paces around her cauldron, continuing to look all around her hut for wherever this entity could be, mentally considering what she could possibly do to get out of this situation. "I will not concede defeat to you. What is it you intend to do?" the zebra asks.
"I shall make you my first major test subject," the voice solemnly states.
Zecora's eyes perk as she feels a presence behind her, turning around swiftly, just in time for a blast of dark magic to strike her. The zebra yells out in pain, eyes clenched, an immense fatigue immediately coming over her as the pain fades. She opens her eyes, her vision incredibly blurred, making out the form of a very dark-colored pony in front of her. Her legs begin to give out as her vision is clouded with darkness. "I... will... not..." Zecora mumbles before her voice gives out.
The white's of the zebra's eyes go completely black as she collapses to the floor, her consciousness fading immediately. The dark pony standing before her laughs, turning into a cloud of purple mist and swirling through the air of the hut. "My first major subject was a success, it seems... Sleep well, Zecora. You won't be waking any time soon."
A loud, cackling laugh bounces off the walls of the hut again, before the hut door opens, the mist flying back outside and slamming the door shut behind it. The orange color of the sky is finally fading completely away, a deathly silence falling over the Everfree Forest with the coming of night, and its new lack of creatures. The black mist rises high to the air above the trees to view the immediate surroundings, its attention focusing on one location.
"And now... to Ponyville."
TO BE CONTINUED...
MLP:FiM and all Characters/Locations Copyright © Hasbro & Lauren Faust
Characters/Locations used without permission