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Hope Rides Alone 8: You Are Our Hero

Mandroid Apr 8th, 2014 247 Never
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  1. Music: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G2AxpaH56WY
  2.  
  3. Discord lands on his mismatched legs on front of you and your host. A pair of moving statues landed behind him, their crowns and raiment earning a few gasps from the crowd along with their vacant, dead eyed expressions. You could feel some of their hope wane seeing them.
  4. >You raise your ring hand and silence them.
  5. >Discord sees that and gawks. “Well well well, what have we here? Is it a little hero come to defeat me?” He snaps his fingers and makes a pair of boxing gloves appear on his hands, sending a few test jabs in your direction. “Well if it's a whuppin' you're a' wantin'...”
  6. “I will not fight you.”
  7. >”You have no choice.” he answers. The boxing gloves disappear as he floats over the crowd. “Or did you plan to beat me with good feelings and smiles?”
  8. “Sometimes the will of one can change the whole world.”
  9. >”And you think that one is here today?”
  10. “I like to think so, yes.”
  11. >Discord rolls his eyes. “Oh please.” he turns to look over the crowd. “There are no heroes here.”
  12. >A rock is thrown and gently bounces off Discord's back, a rock thrown from next to you. “That's not true!”
  13. >All eyes turn to Spike who stands his ground snorting smoke. “Everyone -here- is a hero! They're a hero because even when you took away their homes and friends and what made them who they are, they still grabbed onto it again as soon as they found it! And they still helped each other get here so we could take Canterlot back from you!”
  14. >You nod down to him.
  15. “Well said, my friend.”
  16. >Discord raises his paw to his mouth and stiffles back a chuckle “Re-heally? -THAT- is the best you have? Alright then “Spikey Wikey”-”
  17. >Discord snaps his fingers and he and Spike vanish for a split second, reappearing in the middle of the host and blowing dozens of ponies away form their epicenter of impact.
  18. >Spike rises to his feet in the circle Discord made as the Draconequis spreads his arms out.
  19. >”Let's see what you're made of then, “hero”.”
  20.  
  21. -Spike PoV-
  22. >You step to your feet as Discord leaps into the air and snakes his way around you giggling.
  23. “What's so funny?”
  24. >”Why -you- are, my little Spikey Wikey! All grown up and in your big pony pants...the other dragons won't be making fun of you now. Probably.”
  25. “Shut up!” you shout to him. “And don't -call- me that!”
  26. >Your heart beats out of your chest but you can't let Discord see that. Can't let Anonymous see how scared you really were.
  27. >You'd tried to be like him these past months. He was always so serene and collected whenever the two of you had faced a problem and it was always him who ended up saving the day.”
  28. >Without him, you were...You shake your head, clearing those thoughts away and turning your attention back to Discord who's feigning regret.
  29. >“Oh I'm so -sorry-, is only Rarity allowed to call you that?” he floats up higher and looks around, shielding his eyes with his paw. “Where -is- that delightful pony anyway? I've got a friend by the name of Tom who's -dying- to see her again.”
  30. “I SAID SHUT UP!” you cry.
  31. >Discord spirals down into your face faster than you can blink. “Or you'll what, shout and cry again? Don't make me laugh.”
  32. >Your claw curls into a fist and winds back.
  33. “Or I'll do this!”
  34. >You swing your fist as hard as you can, but Discord blinks away to your side and sticks a finger in your ear.
  35. >You feel him pull something out and when you look back, he's floating there with a long sheet of paper and wearing a fez and glasses while he smokes a pipe. “Hmm...so this is what you've been up to these last few weeks? I see...”
  36. >You right yourself from your missed swing and glare at him.
  37. >Discord throws the paper up into the air and snaps it on fire. “Boring! Who -writes- that crap, anyway!?”
  38.  
  39. >Discord snaps closer in a flash and puts his mismatched hands on your shoulders, spinning you around to face the crowd.
  40. >”Look at them all, Spike.”
  41. >Discord peels your eyelids back and makes you look over the ponies crowded around watching you. They all looked back with mixes of fear and doubt at the monster who'd torn their lives apart.
  42. >”Look at them...standing there dumb struck. Can't they see you're in trouble? Why don't they help?”
  43. “It's not their fight to-”
  44. >”Not their fight?” Discord interrupts. “Then who's is it? Aren't you doing this for -them-? Why shouldn't they fight if their freedom is on the line?”
  45. >That...actually made some sense.
  46. >You had spent the hardest months of your life trying to save these people and...
  47. >And they wouldn't even help you do it...
  48. >”Take a good long look, Spikey Wikey...they aren't helping because they don't -want- to help.”
  49. >Discord's mouth gets closer to your ear while you keep staring.
  50. >”They -want- to be conquered. Want to be crushed under the will of someone stronger than them so that aaaaaalll those little worries that come with their free will can just poof away and leave with the wind...
  51. “Th-they wouldn't stand...”
  52. >”They wouldn't FIGHT. They never will...”
  53. >”They expect you to do -all- the work...even your friends had to be saved by you.”
  54. >You spot Twilight, Rarity, Pinkie Pie all in the crowd with the rest.
  55. >Staring and watching, but not moving at all.
  56. >Discord raises his head up and looks over the crowd with nothing short of contempt.
  57. >”They. Are. The. DEAD, Spike.”
  58.  
  59. >Your head hurts. You continue to look over the crowd as Discords words fill your mind and your heart sinks.
  60. >They wouldn't help, they never would, they didn't even have the will to do that.
  61. >Discord smiles and raises a sparking finger, he begins to reach out to your forehead.
  62. >It wasn't fair. It felt like such a farce, these last few months.
  63. “None of it...mattered...”
  64. >”That's right...” Discord says, his finger centimeters away from your forehead and sparking with magic.
  65. “I-I don't...m-ma-”
  66. >A snake of blue energy shoots out from between the crowd and wraps around Discord's claw, yanking it back away from his face and distracting you.
  67. >”Do -NOT- give up on yourself.”
  68.  
  69. -Anon PoV-
  70. -Music: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0l__jSgTAmQ -
  71.  
  72. >Spike blinks his eyes several times as you pull Discord's arm back further away from him.
  73. >”Anonymous!” he shouts.
  74. “We must never give into despair, Spike. The minute we give up, it's over.”
  75. >You lock eyes with him.
  76. “Without hope, there is no light in the future. We must create the destiny they seek.”
  77. >The clouds over Spike's eyes fade away and give rise to the fire behind the emerald orbs. “Yeah!”
  78. >Discord snaps his fingers and disappears from your grip, re-appearing a dozen feet above you. “No! No! No! You ruined everything! Why don't you just leave well enough alone!”
  79. “Hope is eternal.”
  80. >”OH COME -ON-!”
  81. >Discord disappears and re-appears in front of you, hands covering his face. “Do you say -ANYTHING- that doesn't sound like a cat poster!?”
  82. >You raise your arm up into the sky and bathe what seems like the entire hemisphere in blue light.
  83. “Believe in one another! And let others carry hope for you!”
  84. >The crowd galvanizes and cheers, a chorus of aspiration that echoes across the entire world.
  85.  
  86. >”Like that!” Discord shouts as he walks up in front of you waving his arms. “You big, fat, ugly archetype! You're a walking generality out of a child's book!” he shouts over the cheers and jeers, he knew he was losing the crowd.
  87. “I think that's a strength.”
  88. >”How is being -VAGUE- a strength, you ignorant monkey!?”
  89. “Because I might do something that could surprise you.”
  90. >Discord rolls his eyes and crosses his arms. “Surprise -me-, really, that's a lau--”
  91. >Discord doesn't get any further as you cock your ring arm back and slam it into his lower stomach. Blue light quickly flashes over him and the roll of thunder marks your contact before he rockets out over the host at high speed and lands in a heap far beyond you across the gorge.
  92. >The crowd erupts in a cheer, the impenetrable layer of cotton candy clouds that's hung over Equestria since you arrived starts to break with setting sunlight.
  93. >You start to float into the air.
  94. “Spike, get the girls to the edge of the cliff, quickly. Tell Twilight to bring the box.”
  95. >Spike nods and runs off as you float closer and closer towards Discord.
  96.  
  97. >Discord has himself in a Gordian Knot as he untangles himself and stars daggers at you with blood red eyes.
  98. >It seems that the fun was over.
  99. >”WHY YOU-” he roars. Unsurprisingly, his voice seems to shake the ground with its power.
  100. >”DO YOU HAVE ANY IDEA WHO I -AM- YOU MISERABLE CRETIN?” he fumes.
  101. >You can feel the hope waning behind you, so you amplify your voice. They all needed to hear this part.
  102. “You're nothing.” you say calmly.
  103. >The air hangs silently. No one expected that response.
  104. >You continue.
  105. “What you and your world are are an idea that only a child would find cool.   You're just another bully who obtained the power to project his will over others and you use it to hog an imaginary spotlight.”
  106. “No one is watching, Discord. No one but you, and you're clearly bored of yourself already.”
  107. “Any play-write can write you and any actor in that play could play you, all they'd have to do is make up their own version and people will applause it.”
  108. >Discord's eyes widen and lose their red glow, but he still stars at you.
  109. “But no one will actually ever applaud -YOU-.”
  110. >Through your ring, you hear sounds behind you. Twilight ordering others around and the opening of a wooden box.
  111. >Discord fixes his knot. “You...you think you have it all figured out, don't you? Have -me-all figured out!? There are areas of this kingdom that are -still- quarantined because of me! And you think you have me all figured out! Do you have -any- idea who you're dealing with!?”
  112. >Discord rises into the air and spreads his arms apart. As he does, a great tear in the sky beyond which a maddened cacophony of indescribable arcs of energy and power surge through their own pocket universe.
  113. >“I am the spirit of disharmony and chaos! There is NOTHING I can't do!” he cackles.
  114.  
  115. “What you are-”
  116. >You float to your side and let Discord see what was behind you. Twilight and the rest of the girls are floating in the air, necklaces and tiara's adorned and glowing with magics of their own.
  117. “-is a bad memory.”
  118. >Discord's eyes open wide in surprise and he breaks from where he was to lunge at you.
  119. >You raise your arm and fire a beam at his chest as Twilight and the others fire their own cross-spectrum beam that reminds you of the War.
  120. “You can't hold back the light, Discord.”
  121. >Your beam catches him square in the chest and slows his advance down momentarily. And that moment is all you needed.
  122. >As the rainbow beam strikes Discord, his body rapidly transforms from kaleidoscopic flesh into dull gray stone. The process completes when Discord's fingers are inches from your face and you exhale the breath you had been holding in.
  123. >The entire world seems silent for the briefest of moments as the ponies behind you wrap their heads around what just happened.
  124. >But past that moment, the clouds part and go from pink to white, the ground changes from checkered to it's healthy green, and the soap along the roads seeps into the ground to be forever lost. In front of the host, where they had stood for the entire ordeal, twin statues break free of their stone bonds with their proud wings and resplendent horns.
  125. >And the crowd cheers, oh do they cheer. From here to every corner of the globe and beyond, their cheer is heard.
  126. >The cheer of a world saved.
  127. >You stop Discord's statue-form from hitting the ground with but a thought from your wing and turn back to the cheering populace where you let yourself smile.
  128. “All is well...”
  129.  
  130. Music: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8CgtRvaQ6_8
  131. >You deposit the statue safety on the ground and return back to your friends. Everypony is embracing and rejoicing in their new-found freedom and you can't help but smile.
  132. >Spike leaps out of the crowd and embraces your chest. “Anonymous! You did it!”
  133. >You chuckle and pat the spines on his back.
  134. “We all did it, Spike. We all did it.”
  135. >”Anonymous!” you hear Twilight call over your shoulder.
  136. >You turn and see her leading two larger ponies, the ones who were statues, up to you. “I'd like you to meet Princess Celestia and Princess Luna.” she says with a smile.
  137. >Heads of state? You bow your head.
  138. “Your Highness.”
  139. >To your surprise, they bow theirs equally low. “Sir Anonymous...we will never be able to properly thank you for what you've done for us all here today.”
  140. >You let Spike down and fold your arms behind your back.
  141. “Thanks are not needed, your Highness’s, and I did not act alone. Spike here was with me from the moment I landed on your world.”
  142. >They all turn to eye Spike who's got some red coming into his scaly cheeks. “Aww...it was nothing.”
  143. >The blue one, Princess Luna, you gather from her markings, turns to you. “Thou sayest that thou hast crashed on our world? Please, as some small restitution, allow us to lodge you in the royal palace whilst we construct you a home worthy of the savior of our world.”
  144. >You cock your eyebrow.
  145. “A home?”
  146. >She cocks her own. “Thou art stranded, art thou not? We understand that our worlds be different, but you will find no kinder land than Equestria now that Discord is banished again.”
  147. >You smile and nod.
  148. “Your offer is kind, your highness, but my ring allows me to leave any time I desire.”
  149. >Luna and the others nod their heads in understanding.
  150. “...And I believe that time is upon us.”
  151.  
  152. >Spike reels back in shock. “What!? You can't leave now! We just won!”
  153. “Yes Spike, we won, and now my purpose here is fulfilled.”
  154. >Spike looks around anxiously. “B-but what if Discord comes back!? What if he gets out?”
  155. >You smile and look up into the sky. It was dusk and the stars were just coming out...one star closer and more blue than the others.
  156. “I believe that will be taken care of.”
  157. >The others gathered around you turn their gaze upward to the cobalt star falling to the earth. It turns on an angle and races towards the hilltop you were all gathered upon, slowing itself as it got closer and closer.
  158. >Once it floated above your head and came down, they could see what it was.
  159. >A blue power battery.
  160. >”Wh-what is that?” Spike asks, never taking his eyes off it.
  161. “This is what the Blue Lanterns use to recharge our rings normally, Spike.”
  162. >The lantern lands on the ground and a single blue ring floats out from it in its own glow.
  163. “And...I believe it's yours.”
  164. >Spike gasps as the ring hovers in front of his eyes. It speaks in a voice all can here.
  165. >”Spike of Equestria. You have the ability to instill great hope. You are welcomed into the Blue Lantern Corp.”
  166. >Spike takes one step back. “M-me?”
  167. >You nod.
  168. “I knew once you were able to save Rarity on your own...you have great hope inside you, Spike, and you can share that hope with others. I've seen you do it before and I know you can do it again.”
  169. >You extend your hand to him.
  170. “Do you accept?”
  171. >The boy looks about and twiddles his claws. “I-I don't...” he releases a heavy sigh. “I...can't. Not right now, anyway...I almost let Discord trick me along with everyone else. Maybe...in a few years, when I'm older?” he asks.
  172.  
  173. >You can tell from his tone he expects to be rejected, but you smile down at him.
  174. “Of course.”
  175. >The ring that once floated in front of him now moves to his side where it stays stationary, pulsing with a soft light.
  176. “It will wait for you.”
  177. >Spike smiles at that.
  178. >You send a mental command to your ring and begin to float off the ground, taking to the sky above the ponies.
  179. >Spike takes a step forward. “Will we see you again?” he asks.
  180. >You smile one last time at him.
  181. “If you have hope in your heart, anything is possible. Never forget that.”
  182. >Spike smiles back at you and gives you a thumbs up, which you return.
  183. >You float higher into the air to address the entirety of those gathered.
  184. “Equestrians...Your hope shines brightly, and even more brightly when you work together to overcome. It will ever light your way, in even the darkest of places. I must leave you now, for there are more out there who need hope in their lives to carry onward, and it is my duty to bring it to them.”
  185. >You see some sad faces in the crowd as you rise up further.
  186. “But, I will leave with you a gift of words. Words that have calmed my heart and given me strength since the day my ring chose me. Please, I ask you to join me.”
  187. >You close your eyes, bow your head, and raise your ring up to your chest. Below you, every last pony does the same.
  188. >You clear your throat.
  189. “In fearful day, in raging night,”
  190. “With strong hearts full, our souls ignite.”
  191. >You continue to rise up, gaining speed as those below mirror your words.
  192. “When all seems lost in the war of light, look to the stars-”
  193. >You rocket up through the atmosphere, projecting your words across the entire planet as you blast off into space, becoming one more twinkle among a universe so bright, you almost had to materialize shades.
  194. “For hope burns bright.”
  195.  
  196. -End.
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