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The Preservation of Innocence (Part 6)

By Wall-o-text
Created: 2022-12-30 10:20:07
Updated: 2022-12-30 12:33:41
Expiry: Never

  1. >you are applejack
  2. >you’ve been sitting on the sidelines doing nothing for the past two weeks
  3. >twilight luna and Celestia have been doing all of the work against king sombra while the soldiers hold off the slave army
  4. >you often found yourself thinking about anon
  5. >oh how you wish to see him again
  6. >you can’t stand being away for so long but you have to stay
  7. >the fate of equestria could be in your hands if celestia needs the elements of harmony
  8. >and if equestria is in danger your family, friends and everyone you care about is in danger
  9. >including anon…
  10. >you’re just glad he’s at home safe and sound
  11. >you can't imagine how scared he would be in a place like this
  12. >seeing wounded ponies being carried to the medical tents
  13. >other ponies enslaved to do king sombra’s bidding
  14. >it was terrible
  15. >but at least anon was far away from all of it
  16. >someone like him would be too fragile for war
  17. >he just wouldn’t be able to handle it
  18. >ponies have gone to war for ages, if anon is any indication of his whole species then humans must have never gone through something like that
  19. >hay, even telling him about it would give him nightmares
  20. >as you lay in your quarters you continue your mind wandering
  21. >what are you going to tell anon when you get home
  22. >there’s no way you can tell him about all the gruesome details
  23. >he would probably start tearing up just hearing it
  24. >that delicate boy…
  25. >gosh, you’re going to have to come up with a way to explain all this without scaring him…
  26. >just as you start to think of an explanation for anon you hear a startling sound
  27. >the battlefield went quiet except for one sound
  28. >cries of agony from a single stallion
  29. >a powerful voice, could it be?
  30. >you rush out of the tent to see waves of purple flame disappear the moment you see them
  31. >you witness a dark stallion fall
  32. >and then the most shocking part happened
  33. >the slave ponies freed themselves of their helmets and began to look around
  34. >the equestrian army and the former slaves cheered as king sombra has finally been defeated
  35. >you could finally go home…
  36. >YOU COULD SEE ANON AGAIN!
  37. >like an energetic filly you start running in circles
  38. >all those days of waiting and doing nothing have finally caught up to you and culminated into your celebration
  39. >just as soon as you started celebrating you began to hear murmurs
  40. >murmurs which shifted to yelling
  41. >and yells turned to screams
  42. >you witness a dense black cloud fuming ahead of the equestrian army
  43. >the three princesses flew back towards camp
  44. >they shouted orders for retreat
  45. >as soon as it was heard a full blown panic emerged
  46. >desperate recruits began shuffling onto the train
  47. >you think to gather your friends
  48. >but as you look on they’ve gotten far closer to the train in the time it took you grasp the situation
  49. >you bolt straight towards it
  50. >crowds frantically file in
  51. >as you continue to push yourself in along with the crowd you notice the thick cloud makings its way over the camp
  52. >once inside, the overfilled train lifts off the brakes
  53. >with carrying capacity beyond any reasonable safety measures you were off
  54. >being stuck in the middle of the train cart you could barely get a look out the window
  55. >supplies from the other train being thrown out in place of civillians and soldiers
  56. >you see swarms of pegasi flying alongside the train
  57. >before it was out of eye sight, you saw the camp become engulfed in the dark cloud
  58. >many ponies coughing as they entered the supply train
  59. >you know something bad will come out of this but you’re not sure what
  60. >and you’re worried you will find out all too soon
  61.  
  62.  
  63. >you are anon
  64. >you awaken to the mellow light shining into the forest where you lay
  65. >for a mere moment you feel as if you have gone to heaven or something
  66. >you were sure you were dead
  67. >before you could process it you took a deep breath
  68. >your lungs were sore from all you have gone through
  69. >you could still barely move
  70. >as you exhale you coughed wildly
  71. >you were sure you woud have died
  72. >where could the smoke have gone?
  73. >you sit yourself up against a tree
  74. >still unable to properly walk but enough energy to reach into your bag
  75. >you were starving
  76. >at first you thought you were only asleep for a few hours
  77. >you passed out somewhere in the afternoon
  78. >and woke up near the end of the day
  79. >and yet you feel fully rested
  80. >after what you went through, you must have slept for at least a day straight
  81. >your whole body still aches
  82. >you have just enough strength to reach into your bag
  83. >you were starving
  84. >you grabbed anything edible you could get your hands on and mindlessly ate
  85. >you thought to yourself about how you were going to get home
  86. >your original plan was to take the train but after what went down that wasn’t an option
  87. >you crawled through the opening in the woods to the spot you took the commander down at
  88. >you turn your head towards the camp
  89. >empty and lifeless…
  90. >with the dark cloud chasing off all of the equestrian military there must have been an evacuation
  91. >meaning your ticket home was gone…
  92. >hell, you have plenty of time to plan
  93. >with the condition you’re in right now planning and eating is all you’re good for
  94. >as you go through your rations bag by bag you formulate a plan
  95. >the crystal empire is far closer to you than ponyville
  96. >if anyone can help you it’s them
  97. >and knowing twilight would be a major advantage
  98. >just saying you are a friend of hers could get you some big favors
  99. >at least you hope…
  100. >your second and most risky option is to follow the train tracks back home
  101. >with the time it took just to get here on train it could take upwards of a week on foot
  102. >it was over 24 hours to get here by train
  103. >you can’t accurately guess how long it would take on foot but you know for certain it would take far too long with the supplies you have on you
  104. >you refill your rifle despite how little extra oil it needs
  105. >you push in a single steel ball as well
  106. >Anonymous…
  107. >your new engraving fits a lot better than your old one
  108. >applejack…
  109. >you can’t bring yourself to worry about that right now
  110. >you know for certain that by the time you get home she will know everything about your plan
  111. >no amount of money could keep applebloom shut for that long
  112. >hell the whole plan was to keep her quiet while applejack wouldn’t be suspicious
  113. >with at minimum 2 days of you not being home applebloom will surely tell her at some point
  114. >they’re going to think you’re dead…
  115. >god this is a bad situation…
  116. >well, it’s not AS bad of a situation as it was before…
  117. >at least there’s comfort in that…
  118. >you know, you would have thought that your rifle wouldn’t have done much
  119. >who would have thought it could go through magic of all things
  120. >maybe the bullet was so fast he couldn’t react?
  121. >or you just caught him by surprise?
  122. >hell whatever it was, you SEVERLY underestimated what you could do
  123. >of course that doesn’t matter now
  124. >all you want to do is get home and give applejack a big hug
  125. >and play with applebloom or listen to big mac again
  126. >hell, you almost want to hear rainbow taunting you again
  127. >almost…
  128. >after hours of eating and thinking you reach down into your bag for more
  129. >nothing?
  130. >you reach down again searching harder
  131. >you’re sure you brought more than that
  132. >you bring the bag up to your lap and look
  133. >nothing…
  134. >you look to your side and see an obscene amount of litter scattered across the forest
  135. >you jokingly think how nice it would be to get arrested and taken to jail for that right about now
  136. >would make things a lot easier for you
  137. >without any food left you let yourself drift back to sleep in hopes of recovery
  138.  
  139. >by the next day you wake up feeling far better
  140. >you could almost say you’re fully recovered
  141. >but you know better than to push yourself to test this idea
  142. >your unusually ravenous appetite likely played a role
  143. >you settle on your plan to head to the crystal empire
  144. >you decide make way there
  145. >it’s pretty small from where you are
  146. >at least you know where you’re headed
  147.  
  148. >https://youtu.be/8dYZ99UWn4Q (Equestria’s forgotten hero)
  149.  
  150. >the path you took towards the crystal empire was through the middle of the battle grounds
  151. >The stains in the snow were still there
  152. >some stains were small but other were spread wildly
  153. >through them you could almost imagine how the battles were played out
  154. >certain areas must have been held for short periods while others held for days at a time
  155. >it’s tragic really
  156. >you hope applejack didn’t have to see any of it
  157. >you can’t imagine how awful it would have been for her
  158. >christ, twilight directly participated in the war…
  159. >it hurts to think about
  160. >you really don’t want things to change when you get home
  161. >you’re hoping that when you get home you can throw this whole thing behind you and go on like nothing happened
  162. >sure, you managed to get big mac out of this mess
  163. >but twilight?
  164. >she’s been here from the start
  165. >and she’s played a huge role
  166. >meaning she’s surely seen the worst of the war that even you haven’t seen
  167. >it’s an awful thought to have
  168. >but applejack and big mac are the least of your concerns now
  169. >twilight went through something far worse
  170. >is it possible to help her after it all?
  171. >dammit man, thoughts for later…
  172. >you need to push yourself to get home
  173. >without you applejacks going to worry herself to tears
  174.  
  175. >the trip towards the crystal empire was quiet
  176. >besides the sound of mild wind there was nothing
  177. >the snow flew just barely above the ground
  178. >the moonlight reflected off the open area
  179. >it was very peaceful
  180. >but staying too long could be fatal for you
  181. >you’re not sure how long your going to last without any food
  182. >you hope someone is still at the crystal empire
  183. >considering the slave army that commander guy hadmust have come from the crystal empire there might not be many ponies left there
  184. >if any at all…
  185.  
  186. >https://youtu.be/4EBm0Z9RI34 (Like an empty mall)
  187.  
  188. >the crystal empire was bright
  189. >you can certainly see why it was called the crystal empire
  190. >the buildings shined brightly
  191. >it felt like the city itself was alive…
  192. >and yet it also felt dead
  193. >there was no one around
  194. >and if you were honest with yourself it scared you
  195. >it was quiet
  196. >too quiet for you
  197. >you were almost too nervous to call out for anyone
  198. >but considering the position your in now you had no other choice
  199. “Um, hello? HELLO? Uh ANYONE THERE?”
  200. >nothing
  201. >great, just great
  202. “THE GUY THAT HAD THOSE PONIES IN HELMETS, HE’S GONE NOW”
  203. >still nothing
  204. >this isn’t good
  205. >the city itself looked like it was putting on a facade
  206. >it was creepy
  207. >there wasn’t a way to explain it but it was off putting
  208. >enough that you felt urged to go somewhere else
  209. >maybe that castle had food
  210. >your sure there’s got to be something left here
  211. >there can’t be nothing
  212. >so you make your way into the castle
  213.  
  214.  
  215. >the outside made you uncomfortable
  216. >but the inside the castle was worse
  217. >it was dark, but you could still see relatively fine
  218. >every step you took echoed no mater how quiet you tried to be
  219. >even the slightest noise reverberates within the castle
  220. >you slowly crept your way around the place in hopes of finding a kitchen
  221. >with how luxurious this place was you hoped there would be a big kitchen…
  222. >no amount of hopeful thinking could offset your worries as you made your way through the castle
  223.  
  224. >this place was a maze…
  225. >as you made your way around you noticed a long winding staircase going far down into what seemed to be a basement
  226. >or a dungeon…
  227. >if worst comes to worst you can always go to a random house in hopes there’s food in there
  228. >if you can even find your way out…
  229.  
  230. >as you went down it became darker and darker
  231. >the eerieness of it all becomes clearer to you the further down you go
  232. >by the time you make it to the bottom it’s pitch black
  233. >you figure it’s a waste to be down here
  234. >that is until you heard a noise from behind a door…
  235. “I-I’M FRIENDS WITH TWILIGHT!”
  236. “IF-IF YOU HURT ME SHE’S GOING TO COME FOR YOU!”
  237. >you’re terrified
  238. >you pray your baseless threat works as you can hardly even find the steps to make your way back up the stairs
  239. >”you’re friends with twilight?”
  240.  
  241. >https://youtu.be/OPlK5HwFxcw (The Queen comes out of hiding)
  242.  
  243. >that voice
  244. >it sounded soft
  245. >you hear a door creak open as someone walks through
  246. >her horn lights up illuminating the small room
  247. >you were at a loss for words
  248. >you finally found someone after days of seeing nobody
  249. “Uh, yeah, i mean, i’ve borrowed a book from her once, but we know eachother”
  250. “I live in ponyville after all”
  251. >she gives you a relieved look
  252. >”there was a war going on, what happened?”
  253. “Well, to put it simply equestria won, but as the leader of the slave army fell he released a dark cloud and all the ponies escaped for the trains”
  254. >she looks at you inquisitively
  255. >”then, what are you doing here?”
  256. “I got caught in the cloud and was left behind”
  257. “I’m trying to find a way home, but, nobody knows I was gone”
  258. “So there’s no one to come look for me and i have to find my way back somehow”
  259. >”I am truly sorry to hear this, is there anything i can do to help?”
  260. >you knew exactly what you needed
  261. “Well, if it’s not a bother, i really need to get something to eat, ive run out of food and im not sure where else i could get any”
  262. >she chuckles slightly
  263. >”believe me, this can be arranged, iv’e been down here for the duration of the war”
  264. >”shining armour said it would be for the best but it was very unpleasent”
  265. >”if you have any other requests please tell me, it would at least be entertaining to do something after all this waiting”
  266. >you can sympathize with her on that
  267. >boredom is the worst
  268. >”follow me, i’ll lead you to the kitchen”
  269. >”let us hope there’s something left after what happened to the crystal empire”
  270.  
  271. >you are applejack
  272. >the train made a stop at canterlot
  273. >the crowd rushed out
  274. >you step outside to find your friends huddled together
  275. “RAINBOW, RARITY!”
  276. >you shout as you rush towards them
  277. >rainbow looks at you
  278. >”AJ, DID YOU SEE THAT BIG CLOUD!”
  279. >”IT WAS INSANE!!!”
  280. >rarity interjects
  281. >”what do you think it was?”
  282. “I’m not sure but all i know is it can’t be good”
  283. “I really need to get back to ponyville, you know when the next train is?”
  284. >rainbow rolls her eyes
  285. >”NEXT TRAIN? Are you kidding me? Those things are going to be busy for ages”
  286. >”if we want to get back to ponyville we need a chariot”
  287. “I don’t care what we go in, we need to go as soon as possible”
  288. >rarity turns to you in concern
  289. >”applejack, what’s got you so worked up?”
  290. “ANON, he ain’t never been this long without someone there for him”
  291. >before you can continue rainbow interrupts
  292. >”oh my GOSH aj, he’ll be fiiiiine, quit worrying so much”
  293. >rarity agrees
  294. >”I have to agree with rainbow dash on this one AJ, he should be plenty fine on his own”
  295. >something about hearing this infuriates you
  296. >you can’t blame them, they don’t know anon like you do
  297. >but you’re only concern now is getting back to ponyville
  298. “Look, i know yall don’t see eye to eye with me on this but i REALLY must be going”
  299. “Im grabbing a chariot while i still can”
  300. “If you wanna get back to ponyville any time soon i suggest you come with me, im sure chariots are runnin’ low as it is already with this here crowd”
  301. >the two of look at each other
  302. >rarity speaks up
  303. >”alright, but we have to get fluttershy and pinkie too”
  304. >”i’m sure twilight has business in canterlot, besides, she could probably be given priority transport from celestia herself”
  305. >rainbow adds to the plan further
  306. >”okay, i’ll round up pinkie and fluttershy, you and applejack go find a chariot for us in the mean time okay?”
  307. >both you and rarity nod in unison
  308. >after nearly an hour you and rarity manage to secure a chariot
  309. >soon after rainbow returns with pinkie and fluttershy
  310. >the ride home was slow but far better than hoofing it back
  311.  
  312. >the second you touch down in ponyville you jump off and run home
  313. >you burst through the door to greet everyone
  314. >you hear running down the stairs
  315. >applebloom turns to see you
  316. >”AJ OH MY GOSH YOUR HOME AHHHHHHHH!!!”
  317. >she bolts towards you and gives you the biggest hug she could
  318. “Oh applebloom it’s so nice to see you again”
  319. >”AJ, I missed you so much”
  320. >you let go of applebloom
  321. “ANON, BIG MAC GET DOWN HERE I’M HOME!!!”
  322. >nothing…
  323. >you turn to applebloom to ask her where they are but something catches you off guard
  324. >she’s shaking…
  325. “Applebloom, you alright? What’s going on?”
  326. >she starts full blown panicking
  327. >hyperventilating and shivering
  328. “Applebloom where is anon and big mac?”
  329. >you start questioning her more worried than before
  330. >what the hay is going on here
  331. >why is she freaking out so much
  332. >she doesn’t respond
  333. >she only pannicks and sniffles
  334. >with the worry growing on you, you grow impatient
  335. “Applebloom you need to tell me where they are!”
  336. “C’mon just spit it out!”
  337. >now she’s crying
  338. >really crying
  339. >she’s starting to really scare you
  340. “APPLEBLOOM THIS IS SERIOUS YOU NEED TO TELL ME WHERE THEY ARE THIS INSTANT!!!”
  341. >applebloom is full blown sobbing
  342. >maybe yelling at her was too much but your almost as panicked as she is at this point
  343. “APPLEBLOOM-”
  344. >”THEY'RE GONE!”
  345. >oh dear celestia…
  346. “WHERE? WHERE DID THEY GO?”
  347. >she’s completely inconsolable at this point
  348. >”BIG MAC GOT S-SENT TO THE-THE CRYSTAL EM-EMPIRE A-AND, AND, ANON SAID HE WAS GUH-GOING TO KEEP HIM SAFE AND-AND HE WENT ON THE TRAIN WITH HIM AND-”
  349. >your fully freaking out at this point
  350. >the more applebloom talks the worse it gets
  351. >”AND THEY WERE SUPPOSED TO BE HOME AT THE SAME TIME AS YOU BUT-BUT THEY’RE NOT AND I DON’T KNOW WHERE THEY ARRRRRRREEEE!!!”
  352. >applebloom starts uncontrollably sobbing
  353. >your at your breaking point
  354. >not only did big mac get sent off to war
  355. >but anon went with…
  356. >your certain big mac is in canterlot by now
  357. >everyone made it on to the trains one way or another
  358. >but anon…
  359. >dear celestia, anon’s in trouble
  360. >REAL trouble
  361. >he could be…
  362. >no…
  363. >no please don’t think that…
  364. >you rush back to the chariots
  365. >you’ve got to get anon before he’s hurt
  366. >that stupid boy…
  367. >who knows how scared he is right now…
  368.  
  369.  
  370. >you are anon
  371. >THIS PLACE HAS EVERYTHING
  372. >OATS FRUITS JELLY JAM
  373. >YOU COULD EAT FOR AGES DOWN HERE
  374. >running around the whole kitchen you gather everything you need to make the biggest bowl of oatmeal this empire has ever seen
  375. >as you run around gathering the ingredients you notice something amazing
  376. “YOU GUYS HAVE ZAP APPLE JAM?”
  377. >before she has a chance to respond you grab the whole jar and run off to make your oats
  378. >you turn on the stove and gather everything else
  379. >bowl spoon pot all the utensils
  380. >while you throw everything in to cook you pop open the jar of zap apple jam
  381. >you’ve never had any before but you figured now was the best time to try it
  382. >it was AMAZING
  383. >it was somehow like every fruit imaginable but in the best way possible with a taste that you’re confident literally shocks your taste buds
  384. >as the oatmeal was finishing you pour it all into the bowl and mix in your jam
  385. >having little patience you throw in an ice cube to cool it all down
  386. >with everything mixed in you down it like a rabid animal
  387. >your first proper meal in days and it couldn’t have been better
  388. >with it finished you figure it to be a good idea to make another
  389. >and another…
  390.  
  391. >https://youtu.be/KcwaDLQ0j_g (A peaceful conversation)
  392.  
  393. >after finally having a decent meal you felt amazing
  394. >”well, you certainly were hungry”
  395. >”it’s about time you filled me in on what’s happened”
  396. “Of course”
  397. “Gosh where do i begin…”
  398. >”well, i havent done much of anything for the past few weeks”
  399. >”but i’m sure you’re anxious to get home”
  400. >”so how about the short version”
  401. >the short version
  402. “Well, where should i start?”
  403. >the two of you make your way to the opening in the castle
  404. >it was still dark out but there was a sliver of blue on the horizon
  405. >as you sat down, you asked her something
  406. “Before i start, who are you exactly?”
  407. >”I’m princess cadence, the princess of love”
  408. “Well, I’m anonymous, uh, employee at sweet apple acres…”
  409. “I just go by anon though”
  410. >she giggles slightly
  411. >”well, very nice to formally meet you anon”
  412. >”now tell me, how did the war end?”
  413. >the war
  414. >considering you were the one to end the war, you explained your journey starting from when you got off the train
  415. >the further you went on the more interested she looked
  416. >”my, you had to do all that walking?”
  417. >she would constantly interject full of interest in your story
  418. >”but how is that possible?”
  419. >”you broke his horn with, this thing you’re carrying?”
  420. >you lift it up to show her
  421. “Well, yeah”
  422. >she inspects it for a moment
  423. >”show me how it works”
  424. >you pause for a second
  425. >”this place already has a bit of damage, a tiny bit more won’t be a big deal”
  426. >”why not aim at that building over there”
  427. >you comply and take aim
  428. >after firing cadence jumps a little
  429. >immedietly after you can hear the bullet crack against the crystal building
  430. “Yup, that’s all there is too it”
  431. >”amazing, ive never seen anything like it”
  432. “Honestly, im surprised it even did anything against sombra, i thought his magic would just, i don’t know, deflect it, or something”
  433. >”well, it seems to move pretty fast and you can’t see it in the air, i would have been surprised if he could deflect something like that”
  434. >you continued on with your story until you got to the point of where you are now
  435. >”well, i’m just glad you’re alright after all that”
  436. >”but I believe the crystal empire owes you a large debt”
  437. >”please if there’s anything i can do just say it”
  438. “As much as i wish you could help me im not sure you can”
  439. “All i want is to get back to ponyville but with just you here im not sure that’s possible”
  440. >she thinks to herself a moment
  441. >”that’s not entirely true, i could take you as far as canterlot but ponyville would be a bit much for me”
  442. >”especially with you on my back”
  443. >you do a double take on that last part
  444. “On your back?”
  445. >”well, we don’t really have any other option, and i do owe you quite a bit”
  446. >”as embarrassing as it is, it will have to do”
  447. >”i’ll probably have to cast a spell to make you lighter”
  448. >”but we could at least make it to canterlot by tomorow”
  449. >as embarrassing as it was for you as well, you didn’t see any other good options
  450. >besides, your desire to see applejack again far outweighs any worries of embarrassment
  451.  
  452. >once cadence cast the spell, you felt incredibly light
  453. >for a moment you jumped around ecstatic about the feeling of low gravity
  454. >but even then, you were still too hung up on seeing applejack again that you couldn’t enjoy it for long
  455. >you hopped onto cadences back and she spread her wings and you were off
  456. >the breeze on your face was nice
  457. >being able to see the ground from a birds eye view was scary at first
  458. >you held on tightly to cadence for a while until you were used to it
  459. >a part of you wishes it could have been applejack you held for safety
  460. >that homesick feeling was growing quite large
  461. >the only thing you want is to see applejack again
  462. >it’s all you can think about really
  463. >as time passed you grew more comfortable with the flying
  464. >it became quiet once cadence maintained a steady pace
  465. >”so, applejack was it, how did she react when you and her brother left for the war?”
  466. >when you told her the story you neglected to mention where applejack was
  467. “Uh, the thing is, she wasn’t supposed to know i went on this whole thing…”
  468. “But since it’s been so long since all the ponies went back home she’s bound to know now”
  469. >”anon, why would you keep something like this a secret from her?”
  470. “Applejack… she worries about me a lot, she has a tendency to, i wouldn’t say overreact”
  471. “But she tends to think of me as, well, she called it ‘sensitive’”
  472. “Sure, i guess she was kind of right, but when big mac got drafted there was no one else who could help him but me”
  473. “I was hoping she wouldn’t have to find out i left at all, since she probably already knows by now, im sure she’s beyond distressed”
  474. >cadence goes quiet
  475. >”I think she really cares about you anon…”
  476. >”i mean, i’m not trying to make assumptions or anything, but, i am the princess of love after all”
  477. >”do you think it’s possible she could feel that kind of way about you?”
  478. >deep down you desperately hope so
  479. >you can’t imagine anyone more perfect than her
  480. >she took such good care of you
  481. >and it meant so much
  482. >being cared for like that gave you the most serene feeling you’ve ever felt
  483. >and you want to feel it everyday with her
  484. “I hope so…”
  485. >the rest of the ride was quiet
  486. >maybe cadence could sense how you felt
  487. >you really hope it didn’t make things awkward
  488. >but that quiet didn’t last
  489.  
  490. >https://youtu.be/YO3-_fdOSUs (Changeling invasion theme)
  491.  
  492. >a sudden swarm of, something, flew far too close for comfort to you two
  493. >you’ve never seen ponies like this before
  494. >hell, were they ponies?
  495. >they were pitch black
  496. >and the darkness of the night made them all barely blend in
  497. >but the sudden breeze mixed with the dark swarm passing you was enough to tell it was something
  498. >cadence panicked and dove to the ground
  499. >she chose a spot by the railway you too to the crystal empire
  500. >the second she hit the ground you jumped off and laid there
  501. >the two of you were dead quiet as the swarm passed
  502. >you’re not sure what’s going on but seeing cadence panicked like this meant something must be wrong
  503. >by the time the swarm passed cadence spoke to you in an aggressive but hushed tone
  504. >”CHANGLINGS, THEY’RE HEADED TO CANTERLOT”
  505. “What the hell is a changeling?”
  506. >”they invaded the crystal empire once, and now they’re coming to canterlot”
  507. >invaded?
  508. >dammit, you just want to go home
  509. >you just want there to be peace
  510. >you hate all this conflict, all this fighting
  511. >it’s taken a heavy toll on you
  512. >far more than you care to admit
  513. >but for all you know big mac could still be in canterlot
  514. >”those ponies, my people, THEY’RE ALL THERE”
  515. >her whisper yelling was tense
  516. >”they’re going to steal their love, we can’t let that happen!”
  517. >how the fuck does a changeling ‘steal love’?
  518. >all you know is that it’s important enough that cadence is freaking out
  519. >”anon, i need you to trust me and trust me fully do you understand? Not a single objection to what i got it?”
  520. >you were worried but you you nodded
  521. >”get back on and shoot at them, do not stop shooting okay, pony lives are on the line do you understand?”
  522. >”we need to do everything we can to stop them!”
  523. >”i mean EVERYTHING anon, okay?”
  524. >despite all of this being out of your depth, you comply
  525. >you immediately hop back on and cadence leaps off into full speed
  526. >she heads just slightly in front of the swarm
  527. >you can barely see them but the swarm is big enough that no matter where you shot into them it would hit somewhere
  528. >with your legs wrapped as tightly as you can to her you lay backwards and shoot upside down while cadence keeps the pace towards canterlot
  529. >you never wanted to get into something like this
  530. >but a monarch begging you for your help means this is something terribly serious
  531. >the swarm speeds up after noticing a few of them suddenly drop from the swarm
  532. >they target the two of you
  533. >never being able to fully catch up but desperate to catch you
  534. >you empty everything you have into the swarm
  535. >no matter how much you shoot into the swarm they never let up
  536. >eventually your gun runs out of ammo
  537. “CADENCE THEY’RE GETTING CLOSE LOSE EM WHILE I RELOAD”
  538. >she likely didn’t understand what you meant fully
  539. >but she sure as hell knew you needed her to buy you time and get them off your back a moment
  540. >cadence flew wildly
  541. >her wings were far bigger than theirs
  542. >she would twist and turn to avoid their grasp
  543. >the changelings were wildly determined to cath the two of you
  544. >all the motion made you dizzy
  545. >the only thing you were focused on was pushing the ammo back into the rifle
  546. “WE’RE GOOD FLY STRAIGHT AGAIN!”
  547. >with a few cycles of this the swarm noticeably got smaller
  548. >it was still disgustingly large
  549. >the dent you did to them was worth something that was certain
  550. >but after a while ammo ran dry
  551. >no matter the fuel efficiency you had, without ammo it was pointless to continue with the air assault
  552. “CADENCE I'M COMPLETLY OUT!”
  553. “WE NEED TO HEAD STRAIGHT TO CANTERLOT! NOW!!!”
  554. >without hesitation she bolted straight to canterlot
  555. >she was seemed incredibly winded
  556. >between breaths she spoke
  557. >”ANON, IT’S GOING TO BE A FAST LANDING WHEN WE GET THERE”
  558. >she gasps for breath
  559. >”I HAVE TO GATHER THE ARMY, WHEN I LAND JUMP OKAY?”
  560. “GOT IT!”
  561. >right as you near the center of canterlot you see everypony
  562. >fucking hell…
  563. >there’s almost as many ponies just standing outside as there are in the swarm coming right for them
  564. >for a split second the only people who knew how much trouble canterlot was in was you and cadence
  565. >right as you two neared the ground she shouted
  566. >”ANON JUMP!”
  567. >you jumped off to one side and rolled
  568. >you were incredibly dizzy again
  569. >but by the time you orient yourself you could already hear the screams of all the ponies
  570. >there were medical tents being gaurded by soldiers with fear written all over them
  571. >undoubtebly they were not prepared for something like this
  572. >this was bad
  573. >you knew canterlot was completely unprepared for something like this
  574. >especially with the refugees from the crystal empire, this place was wildly over crowded
  575. >but what came next was far more horrifying
  576.  
  577. >https://youtu.be/75P0QGi3RO0 (Terror from where you stand)
  578.  
  579. >you were completely alone
  580. >cadence ran off leaving you completely alone
  581. > except for the screams of other ponies
  582. >the swarm had landed
  583. >though not on the ground
  584. >on every pony they could jump onto
  585. >you rushed towards the first pony being bitten
  586. >you screamed so loud your ears rang silencing out the screams from all over canterlot
  587. >your bayonet pushed straight into the first changeling
  588. >as you kept rushing past the bitten pony you tossed the changeling off the end of your rifle
  589. >there was something horrific about killing up close
  590. >you could have sworn you heard it scream before it died
  591. >you endlessly charged every changeling in sight
  592. >your screams were the only thing keeping you sane
  593. >the ringing in your ears kept out the horrible sounds
  594. >the swarm was unforgiving
  595. >a changeling bit your arm
  596. >in the urgency of it all you fell to the ground and bit down on the changelings muzzle like an animal
  597. >without your deafening screams you could hear the cries of the changeling
  598. >your teeth dug violently in
  599. >the second the unlatched you sank your blade into the changeling in the side while it was on the ground
  600. >it made you feel physically sick
  601. >every pony you saw being attacked you would rush to help
  602. >the streets seemed to empty themselves of ponies but the swarm in canterlot got larger and larger no matter how many you killed
  603. >there weren’t any ponies left to save
  604. >the swarm began to intentionally target you
  605. >with every changeling you dug your bayonet into another would bite
  606. >their teeth were thin and their bite force was just enough to dig into you
  607. >your screams became cries
  608. >to the changelings they were fierce war cries
  609. >but to yourself they were out of horrible distress
  610. >it was far too much for you to handle
  611. >but there was no one who was coming to save you
  612. >you were entirely on your own with this
  613. >the blood was disgusting
  614. >it was all over the ground
  615. >it would pool in the grooves on the stone streets
  616. >within time some soldiers began to appear
  617. >they helped take care of some changelings but would mostly stay in their small areas
  618. >maybe they were there the whole time
  619. >but your laser focus on your next targets prevented you from noticing
  620. >you were viciously fighting for your life
  621. >your throat hurt from all of the cries
  622. >even breathing felt painful as the air grazed the tender parts of your throat
  623. >without anything to drown the noise you heard every little detail
  624. >their horrible cries for mercy as your blade sank into their chests
  625. >there was no stopping it, your momentum would be too much by the time they beg
  626. >the first time you heard it you tried to forget it, you thought it was delusion
  627. >but it would happen again and again
  628. >their cries sounded so young
  629. >your very last attempt was the most horrific
  630. >you chased a changeling but instead of attacking back it ran and cried in fear
  631. >you couldn’t bring yourself to continue
  632. >you fell to your knees with such a large drop in energy
  633. >with your hands on the ground all you could see was the thin layer of liquid on the stone
  634. >without the rush of adrenaline you could process it all
  635. >they were screaming…
  636. >oh god they were screaming
  637. >you started gagging like you were going to throw up but you had nothing in you
  638. >they were so violent
  639. >but they, fuck, they were screaming for you to stop
  640. >you look up to see there was no one around
  641. >only those changelings left over from what transpired
  642. >you think back to your ringing ears
  643. >how many changelings begged for you to stop and you didn’t listen
  644. >you could hear fighting still going on further away
  645. >but from where you are there’s nobody left
  646. >just you, your deep regrets and the sound of fighting in other parts of canterlot
  647. >you wouldn’t dare pick up that rifle again
  648. >what you did was horribly wrong
  649. >you silently cry in frustration while the pressure behind your eyes continues to build
  650. >you couldn’t process it all
  651. >you knew they were attacking ponies
  652. >hell you saw them sink their teeth into one
  653. >but the fact they could be so afraid
  654. >the fact they begged you not to kill them and you didn’t listen
  655. >it made everything so tragically confusing
  656. >you couldn’t think straight
  657. >you just wish none of it would have happened
  658. >you get up and stumbled down the road leaving your rifle behind
  659. >you never want to see it again
  660. >you sniffle as you make your way down the road with labored breathing
  661. >you were done
  662. >you couldn’t take it anymore
  663. >and you just want applejack to make this all better again…

The Preservation of Innocence (Part 1)

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The Preservation of Innocence (Part 2)

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The Preservation of Innocence (Part 3)

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The Preservation of Innocence (Part 4)

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The Preservation of Innocence (Part 5)

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