The Book of Artemis
Side Story of My Little Bionicle
So first chapter was a bit like Princess Twilight part 1, now to get the second part without dealing with flashbacks.
Chapter Two: Elements are not Set in Stone
Discord the lord of chaos, and now ruler of Karzahni, was tucked in his specially made bed. The matoran loved him so much, compared to the old ruler it was not hard. This bed was one of his many gifts they gave him for making what they called Tartarus into a strange place called Arthaka. However his dreams were interrupted by an angry Princess Luna.
“DISCORD!” The angry mother alicorn yelled throughout the mixmatch being’s dreamscape.
“You’re capslock, oh moon but.” Discord said as his dream dissolved around him leaving the void of the connective dreamscapes.
“Artemis is missing, Ponyville is covered in thorny vines that are spreading across Equestria, and to top it off it all reakes of your magic.” Luna said looking Discord in the eyes and pushing forward with each word. This caused Discord to backup against a non-existent wall and gulp loudly. “IF you do not fix this right now I will personally see that you are trapped in stone and then have a block of solid concrete poured around you cutting you off from the rest of the world until the end of time forever alone and forgotten.”
Discord had seen many a fierce beings, even Luna herself, but this was a new side of the ruler of the night. He, himself, had a bit of a familiarity feeling to the young alicorn. Granted in a very strange way she was his niece from a more evil and mastermind half of a former whole being, some could be a heartless being and a new nobody that was so different from the original.
The draconequus nodded and replied to the moon princess.
“Right away, but I must inform my subjects that I must be leaving for a bit.” He said getting a shocked look on the female’s face.
“Subjects?” Luna said a questioning tone soon replaced with more rage. “What lies of you told these ‘subjects’? That you are a god sent from the sky above to save them!”
“Please I’m vain not an idiot.” Discord said glaring at Luna. “Before I came to their place they were under a tyrant and it looked like the world ended. So I liberated them and they have loved me ever since.”
“How do I know you aren’t lying?” The princess stared him down.
“Check their dreams and nightmares, they will show you no lie.” Discord said returning the stared.
“Fine.” She said picking a random door and opening it.
Artemis could feel her vine cocoon dragging her somewhere, but the alicorn had no idea where. It did give her time to fume over the constant times of being captured and having to have others come and save her. She was Nightmare Moon, a tyrant and bringer of the eternal night, now a filly who is trying to have a life and leave the blood shed in the past. In a dark part of her mind lived that desire but for that one month of being Artemis has made her want to stay who she was.
Was she weak? Yes, because she was scared of her power. In many respect she could be called hybrid of the Nuian and Equestrian types of ponies, and that is what scares her. If alicorn magic can move the heavens, what does alicorn level of magic do to elemental power? Shadow would call too many to Sombra, and the farthest she was from that monster was better in her opinion.
All her thoughts stopped for a moment as the vines quit moving and the alicorn felt something that she recalled being blasted by, it was hard to forget a rainbow tornado causing you to lose your physical form and make you weak enough to fit into another pony’s mind. But this thing feels weak, like she was once. At the same time she felt the vines grow stronger, now seemed like the time to test out how strong she really was.
Ponyville was overrun with vines and surprisingly, to the ponies not us, the vines were chasing ponies. Thankfully this was in Twilight’s many disaster plans for the city that she and Mayor Mare had put together after her minor, or major depending on the space time point of view, freak out after a future version of herself came back to try and tell herself not to freak out which happen anyway because wibbly wobble timey wimey rules.
By now most of the town have gone into a magical shielded bunker with only a few ponies still out fighting the vine, which include the CMC. Apple Bloom, Sweetie Belle, Scootaloo, and Babs Seed were all separated from the mass in flood of ponies into the shelter, but they also noticed the absence of the library crew.
Putting two and two together the four rushed to the knowledge tree only to see Goldrax cutting the vines with a shadow energy fighting against the vine, Spike was breathing fire on the vines, Owlicious was holding the shift as it more vines away. The four were in such an awestruck state the fillies failed to notice the vines coming to snatch the quartet.
The male heard their screams and rushed to cut/burn the vines. The fillies were released by the vines falling onto the ashes of the the previous vines. With those taken care of the dragon and nuian nearly fell to the ground exhausted.
“What*huff*are*huff*you*huff*four,” Spike said before holding up a claw. “Give me a moment I have rest my throat.”
“Why did you come here? It is unsafe to be out of the bunker.” Goldrax said his voice and form shifting to his natural Toa form. “We not only have to rescue Artemis but now make sure you are unharmed.”
“Wait Artemis was taken by the vines?” Scootaloo said picking up on what the adult said.
“Doesn’t that girl go one week without something trying to use her for some evil plans?” Apple Bloom thought aloud.
“Well she was a mare that fought Princess Celestia and would have won if not for the Elements of Harmony.” Sweetie Belle replied. “Plus she is part whatever Goldrax is with that shadow powers, is it any wonder there is not a line of villains outside the library not waiting to steal her?”
“Ya tak’n dis far too well.” Babs pointed out how causally her cousin and friends were taking this.
“Babs have I told ya how many times we had to rebuild the barn?” The youngest apple replied.
“What five or six tops?” The city apple answered.
“We are on our twenty-fifth barn.” The country apple deadpanned relied.
“Oh.” was all the manehattan could say.
“Go back to the Bunker and wait there.” Spike said finally getting his breath back. “The last thing I want to do is have explain to your sisters that you got hurt or worse.”
“But we can help.” Apple Bloom said before looking at the vines. “From working on the farm I can tell that these here vine originated from the Everfree Forest.”
“Fine Apple Bloom can join us but the rest must get to safety.” Goldrax said his eyes scanning for more vines to try and attack the small group.
“If ya think I wou’d let my cousin go in there with both of ya by herself you are mistaken.” Babs said moving next to Apple Bloom.
“Ya and you can’t break up the CMC if you tried.” Scootaloo said with a boosted tone and Sweetie Belle nodding forming a line like sisters in arms.
“We are wasting time debating this.” Spike said pinching the briged of his nose.
“Agreed.” Goldrax said a determined look on his face. “Let’s move out.”
With that a rescue team formed and moved to saved their friend. Meanwhile other ponies were having more trouble with the vines.
“Tavi watch the left flank.” Vinyl barked the order as she used her sound systems to make a wall of sound that halted the vines dude to the vibrations of the water in them.
“I’ve got it Vinyl just keep the wubs going.” Octavia said her posh voice yelled over the sound wall. “For once her idea of a fifty piece stereo was a good idea.” The last part was to herself more than anything else.
As the unicorns. well two unicorns and a changeling, found out the vines could screw with their personal magic so that mean not using it unless it was the only option. The area that they were defending was the bunker with all of Ponyville in it. Only Lyra, Bon Bon, Octavia, Vinyl, and Wubsy stayed out to be the last line since they did not know how the shield spell would react to the vines. With the five of them they station themselves in the cardinal directions with only the north and the ordinal direction fully cover. So far they had held out but it was only a matter of time before the vines slipped by and attempt to breach the bunker.
Far from the vines, two villains began the centaur’s plan to take over Equestria. They both agreed that the far north would be the last place they would hit. For the pegasus it was a calculated to give his charge to capture the city up there with princess fleeing to the capital making her easier to capture. While the Centaur wanted to be about par with any force that could defend the city. They would began in Vanhoover and work there way down the coast, then inward. Icarax would be the spotter, while Terik would set the trap, and with combined effort they would get Terik up to full strength and Icarax would gain a powerful ally. They would start with the ones nopony would miss or ignore that would be the best way to stay hidden.
Luna could not believe what dreams of this ponies showed her. Every dream was a pony showing Discord as a hero. The very same Discord that could turn the world into a pop up book with a sneeze. On some level she could see her and Discord getting along, to former baddies turned good, best start making shirts saying ‘Luna and Discord’s reformers club for all former maniacal beings’. The sarcastic thought did not go unnoticed by the Lord of Chaos.
“Oh come now Luna you know that is too long for a club name.” The cheeky draconequus replied to the thought as they returned back to dream hallway. Before he spoke again his face turned serious. “Since I have proven that I’m telling the truth, tell me what has happened so far.”
“As far as I know Ponyville is the only place fully impacted by the vines.” Luna said still not letting her guard down. “However they seemed to be heading towards Manehattan.”
“The plunder seeds were meant to capture you and your sister before you both defeated me but they never sprouted.” Discord recalled. “Something must have stopped it, but I can not think of anything that could contain that much chaos magic besides me.”
That was when it hit Luna. “The Tree of Harmony.” She spoke in disbelief. “That has to be it.”
“Tree of what?” Discord not recalling anything besides a tree to his mind.
“It was the origins of the Elements of Harmony.” Luna replied as the memory played in the dream world behind her. “It was something our parents talked about since we were little, until I saw it with my own eyes I thought it was nothing but a fable.”
“So going off logic if a thousand plus year old seeds have sprouted into vines than these Tree must be sick or dieing.” Discord said getting a shocked look from Luna.
“Wait if you set the vines after me and Celestia while I know I’m sound asleep then that means…” Luna’s thoughts almost made her want to bolt out of this dream and out of bed.
“The vines thought Artemis was you due her magic being similar to your’s.” Discord said as he noticed the dream began to fall apart. “I’ll be in Ponyville searching once this is over.”
“Why do you care about her?” The anger and confusion was clear in the female’s voice. “What is she to you but another toy to play with.”
“Some things are best explained from those who are the effect rather than the cause.” Discord said as the dream world the pair.
Discord awoke and noticed that the matoran guarding him had fallen asleep. He could not blame them, many of them had sleep disorders due to Karzahni almost never sleeping. Still he had a job to do and a niece to save, but first he must leave a note.
The CMC and the Library crew fought their way through the dangerous forest, the self controlled aspect of this place was no longer the scariest part of it but the vines and strange things that grew there now were. Trapped like plants on the end of some vines tried to snatch them, fortunately the fillies coordinated and had the plants knot themselves up.
It was there that they came the long abandoned Castle of the Two Sisters. All but the Toa and Manehattan knew of this place, it is only when Owlowiscious still with Dusk in his claws points out the stairway down to the base of the chasm.
“That’s strange,” Apple Bloom said as they walked down the stairs. “Applejack never said anything about there being stairs here.”
“Well it was misty so they may not have noticed it.” Sweetie Belle replied.
“Ya Rainbow Dash said that it was so foggy that she could not see the bottom even while flying.” Scootaloo add.
“This place is still a bit too quiet for me.” Babs said with a bit of a shiver. “Ever since those freaky vines I have not heard a sound from anything but us.”
“She has a point,” Goldrax agreed his eyes darting around. “I may still be new to being in these types of situations but even I know if it is too quiet then something is going to happen.”
With that hanging over their heads the girls felt determination, Spike hide a very real break down behind his warface which made him look like he just stub his toe, Goldrax began to pull light to make a torch to see once they reached the bottom, and the owl carrying the shade of twilight ready to dive bomb anything and scout ahead.
They traveled to a cave that none knew was under the castle, at first it was only the ball of light elemental energy lighting their way until they came to a grey and dying tree that was like nothing any of them had seen, even Goldrax was in a bit of shock of the look of the tree. The feeling of the chamber was that of dread and lifelessness. Vines covered the tree as if it was strangling the life out of it, at the base of the tree was an almost cocoon like vines which had Goldrax raging.
Without speaking, and using a combination of the light in the chamber with shadow, he rushed to the cocoon with blades of light and shadow cutting, slicing, and chopping any vines that dared to come at him. The others did not speak as they knew not what to say as the Toa’s actions confused them. It was only when he got to the vine cocoon and cut Artemis free of it.
“Guess this makes us even.” Goldrax told her as his mask activated as he dodging the vines that came at the pair.
“When have you ever owed me anything?” Artemis asked as she held on the taller stallion.
“Every single day I get to be a kid and have you as a friend.” Goldrax said as he knotted the vines.
“For somepony that comes from a society that has no clue what love is you sure do know how to say the cheesiest lines.” Artemis chuckled. After so long having nothing but time to think and her fear creeping into thoughts Goldrax’s comment cheered her up while her guess proven true from seeing the Tree of Harmony.
Once the pair landed Artemis could see that all of her friends were there and looks of relief was on there faces. They gather around her and as one gave her a group hug with Goldrax watching if the vines came at them in this sweet moment. Luck seemed to be on their side for now, as no vines came to them.
Once the hug broke and before the group could ask if she was alright Artemis raised her front right hoof and spoke.
“While I am glad to see you all here and wish to thank you for coming to save me, I fear that I must inform you that what has to be done to save the Tree of Harmony is impossible.” Her voice becoming monotone by the end of sentence.
“What is the Tree of Harmony?” Apple Bloom asked speaking for them.
“Before my mother and aunt defeated Discord they came here to retrieve the Elements from this tree.” Artemis said her voice still hiding her fears. “With Twilight and her friends still on the Island we can’t fix this.”
“Don’t say that we can fine a way to fix it.” Spike said with the other nodding in agreement.
For just a moment a phase flashed in the back of Goldrax’s mind, “Through unity, we find our duty and make our destiny.” In that moment the Toa spoke.
“What if you could forge your own elements in place of the others?”
“How could we make elements of harmony when they originally came from this tree?” Apple Bloom asked in turn.
“I know that things like Toa energy, the way I was changed to this more ‘adult’ form, can be stored in a stone. Why not something similar to these elements?” The Nuian pointed out.
“Even if we could do that we don’t have anypony who could use them?” Sweetie Belle countered.
It was then that the Tree of Harmony began to sparkle as the last of it’s magic called forth six new gems blank and colorless. Artemis saw this and felt the magic almost fully drain from the tree. Using her magic she brought the gems to the group, without any thought or feeling she sent five of them to her friend and kept one to herself. Four went to the CMC and one to Spike, which confused the dragon.
“Why do I get this?” Spike spoke his mind.
“Who better to be loyalty then the first friend I ever had, even know my past.” Artemis said with a smile on her face.
“Great just like the last time I’m the new Rainbow Dash.” Spike said recalling that whole stopping Discord thing and then the stomach ache of the scrolls, that was not a good day.
“Lucky.” Scootaloo jokely said.
“Ya know these may not be the same as cousin AJ and the others.” Babs added.
“We won’t know until we try.” Apple Bloom declared and looked at her friends with nods they all focus on the gems.
Be it in their united focus or the Tree helping them, soon magic began to flow from each of them into the gem. Each a unique color; Spike’s was emerald green, Scootaloo’s moderate cerise, Apple Bloom’s amaranth, light grayish sap green for Sweetie Belle, moderate spring bud for Babs, and teal for Artemis. Once the gems were linked and ready Artemis floated them to the Tree and slotted them into the spots that the other elements once sat.
Once done a ray of light came from the tree, a blinding light that burned the vines away with the gems changing shapes. Spike’s was turned into a emerald green flame, Scootaloo’s was in a wing shape, Apple Bloom’s was an apple with a heart carved into the amaranth, Sweetie Belle’s a star shape with a musical note in the center of the grayish green gem, Bab’s was a pair of spring bud apple shaped scissors, and Artemis’s was her cutie mark in teal.
With them in place the Tree called on this new magic and regained health so quickly that the vines burned away. The group watched as the vines kept burning away, and only the vines were affected. Soon they were out of sight and headed to where all the vines spread were.
For a moment they all were silent, then they all began to cheer and celebrate. They had save the town and all of Equestria from the vines. It was only when two shocked voices yelled out.
“Artemis!” both said, and when the group turned and looked at the source Discord and Luna had looks of disbelief.