*********[A/N] If you like this, be sure to check it out on FIMFiction www.fimfiction.net/story/63702…
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Spike the "Hero"
The Crystal Empire was slowly becoming engulfed in a mass of threatening, black clouds; dark as the deadliest of storms. Screams could be heard all around as the crystal ponies began to panic. Up in the tallest tower in the city, Twilight found herself trapped within the confines of a black-crystal prison, the gems risen up from the ground, blocking any means of escape for the lavender unicorn. Just outside, Spike started to feel nervous. His eyes darted from side to side, his feet moved up and down like two, small pistons.
Twilight started to scramble within the crystal-walled trap, looking for the Crystal Heart with a set of panicked eyes.
"The heart? Where's the Crystal..." she started, voice quick and desperate, when Spike interrupted her.
"Here!" Spike called from outside the entrapment, pointing to the blue Crystal Heart that lay at his feet. "It rolled over to me when you dropped it!"
Spike took a few tedious steps towards Twilight, careful to avoid the crystals that pushed up from the shining floor. Each step was a conscious effort to not get stabbed in the foot. Twilight peeked out at her friend, watching as he engaged in strange jig-like movement to avoid getting hurt.
"Don't move," she called out, causing Spike to freeze. The black crystals continued to rise all around him as he looked up at Twilight, eyes fearful and pleading for advice from his brainiac friend. Twilight realized the black crystals were rising from the ground whenever her assistant took a step closer to her. "You can move, just not towards me."
Tentatively, Spike took a few steps back, noticing that there weren't any crystals arising from the floor behind him...yet. The still trapped Twilight nodded, closed her eyes and focused on teleporting herself out of her temporary prison. Her body was quickly engulfed in a familiar, magenta sphere before she was zapped outside of the entrapment, freely floating in the air.
Twilight let out a sigh of relief just before she found herself surrounded in a black shadow that resembled King Sombra's body. Before she could do anything, Twilight found herself teleported back into the crystal enclosure. The magical force slammed her face-first into the side before she slid to the ground, her cheek throbbing in pain.
"How could I have been so foolish? I was just so eager to get it." Twilight said, starting to push her front hooves against the wall, trying to force her way out. Realizing it wasn't working, she ran over to the other side, hoping to find a weakness in the crystals there. Alas, the walls were as strong and immobile as they were on the other side. "Then when I saw what was happening outside, I..."
"You have to get out of there Twilight!" Spike called, a nervous quiver in his voice. His arms crossed over his chest, fear building from within him. "You have to be the one to take the Heart to Princess Cadence." Spike turned around to see the Crystal Heart laying on the ground right behind him. "If you don't, you'll fail Celestia's test!"
Twilight grimaced, realizing that Spike was right, and if she wasn't the one to save the day, she'd fail the Princess' test and the "worst case scenario" she saw in the doorway minutes before would become more than a simple hallucination- it would become reality. Listening to the chaos that was happening in the city around her and Spike, the unicorn came to another horrifying realization- they were quickly running out of time.
"King Sombra is already attacking the Empire. He could reach the crystal ponies at any moment."
Twilight peered through one of the cracks in the enclosure, trying to get a good view of what was happening outside. "Reach Princess Cadance, my brother, my friends. There may not be enough time for me to find a way to escape."
Twilight swallowed, her legs starting to tremble as the ground shook. She could feel the tears start to well up in her eyes when, suddenly, she had an epiphany. She made her way over to the other end of her prison and peered out, watching as Spike tried to move away from the black crystals that rose up like tiny spears from the floor.
Twilight's face turned from one of concern to one of determination, eyes scowling as she looked at her panicked friend. "You have to be the one to bring the crystal heart to the Fair."
Spike's eyes went wide. "Me? But Twilight..."
"Go!" Twilight shouted. Spike gasped, his eyes landing on the Crystal Heart. Quickly, he made a reach for it, snatching it off of the ground and pressing it to his chest. He could feel his heart beating as the gem pressed against it, his pulse raced and his breathing rate increased- almost to the point of hyperventilation..
He looked down, the pointed, black crystals still rising from the ground at his feet. He then looked down at the Crystal Heart, glimmering in the sunlight, still present, though dimmed from Sombra's shadow. It's smooth texture, it's turquoise coloration, and it's sheer size amazed Spike. With everything that had gone on, Spike hadn't had enough time to sit down and eat anything at the festival. Sure, there were corncobs and other treats that looked delectable, but he hadn't taken advantage of the brief peacetime to nosh.
Now, looking at his amazing gem, he couldn't help but feel an emptiness within the very pits of his gut. A small growl escaped from Spike's stomach. He started to drool, saliva moistening his tongue, contemplating the possibilities of what the gem would taste like.
Twilight, who still had her eyes on her number one assistant, became confused by the dragon's mesmerized state- especially when he had a job to do. "Um, Spike? Hello, we're sort of in a rush here."
"I know. But this Crystal Heart, this...gem." Spike said, licking his lips. His stared wide-eyed at the Heart, taking in its beauty. "It's just so...shiny."
Recognizing the hungry glimmer in Spike's eyes, Twilight suddenly became scared. "Oh no, no, no. Spike! Don't even think about it."
"It's aged over one-thousand years... one-thousand of ripening...wow." Spike muttered to himself, drumming his fingers against the surface of the gem. "I bet it's even more delicious than my fire ruby would have been, had I eaten it!"
Twilight face-hoofed out of frustration. "Ugh! Can you forget about your stupid taste-buds for five seconds and please get the Crystal Heart down to Princess Cadence?" Twilight said, pointing out towards the incoming shadow of doom. "Look! Sombra has almost engulfed the entire empire!"
It was true, the massive shadow that was King Sombra's body continued to creep further and further into the city. Ponies were running around in a blind panic, screaming at the top of their lungs and, occasionally, smacking into one another. Yet Spike didn't notice, all of his attention was on the Crystal Heart in his possession.
"Yeah, yeah some evil unicorn attacking, I'll get to it." he said in a hushed tone, giving the heart a long, sloppy lick, eliciting a disgusted "ew" from Twilight. He then held up the heart, directly in front of his open mouth, saliva accumulating on his tongue.
"Spike, hold on! SPIKE!" Just before he could take a bite, Spike froze and turned to Twilight. The unicorn shook her head, "Spike, please think about what you're doing. If you eat that, the entire Crystal Empire is doomed to become enslaved under King Sombra, including you, me, my brother, Cadence and our friends! That means no more reading the latest 'Daring Do' novels, no more Ponyville, and especially no more gems! So really, is that one turquoise crystal heart bigger than your head really worth it?"
Spike really did consider running it down to Cadence, putting the fate of the entire Empire ahead of his own personal indulgences. But as soon as Twilight let the words "Turquoise" and "bigger than your head" pass her tongue and enter the dragon's listening ears, any chance of Spike being selfless imploded.
He finally answered Twilight with four words she never thought, nor did she wish, to hear coming from her reliable friend.
"I'll let you know."
The baby dragon held the Heart up to his open mouth, sharp fangs glistening above and below a portion of the Heart, ready to chomp down
"SPIKE! NO!" Twilight screamed, but it was to no avail. Spike's pointed teeth made contact with the translucent surface of the Heart.
Smiling, Spike chewed the hunk of crystal in his mouth, swallowing it before letting out a satisfied sigh. He then proceeded to eat the entire Crystal Heart right in front of his terrified and livid friend. Once the heart was gone, currently digesting in the high acid levels of Spike's stomach, the baby dragon closed his eyes and licked his lips, an expression of bliss on his face.
"Mmmm, that was good."
Twilight shook her head in disbelief. "Spike, do you realize what you've done!?!"
"Yeah, I just ate the most delicious gem EVER!" Spike said, letting out a belch after finishing his sentence. He smacked his lips and chuckled. "He-he, even tastes good coming up. You don't think this empire has a second heart, do ya? Because I could sure go for some seconds!"
"No! You ate the only hope we had to stop King Sombra. Now you've doomed us all to a life of slavery under the rule of a tyrant!" Twilight screamed.
"I did?" Spike asked, his cheerful face gone, replaced with one lacking any noticeable emotion. He turned and looked outside, watching as King Sombra's shadow started to engulf the city, before a solid body began to form at the front. In a matter of moments, the re-formed body of King Sombra- black fur, armor and all- stood tall in front of the cowering crystal ponies, his slaves. Chuckling, his purple-aura leaking eyes scanned the crowd of cowering ponies.
"Behold, your King has returned. Mwahahaha!" Screams were heard as ponies began to run, only to find themselves either encased in a similar crystal prison to Twilight, or trapped in chains that spontaneously appeared on their necks and hooves. On a balcony below, an exhausted Princess Cadence, Shining Armor and the rest of Twilight's friends found themselves trapped.
Rarity started screaming about how filthy they looked. Fluttershy and Pinkie Pie began to cry-Fluttershy letting out small, timid weeps while Pinkie Pie went all out in sobs that resembled waterfalls.
Even though he found himself chained, Shining Armor tried to free Cadence with his magic, as she was too weak to do so herself. But the chains wouldn't budge, and eventually the brave captain of the Royal Guard realized it was pointless. He let out one final grunt before falling to the ground, breathing heavy as sweat poured down his face. His wife gave him a small nuzzle and whispered, "You tried."
Applejack and Rainbow Dash both struggled against their chains, growling and bucking their legs in a desperate attempt to break free, but it was all for naught. They were trapped, just as the crystal ponies on the streets below were. The two tough mares eventually gave up as well, laying themselves down onto the ground. Applejack started to think about her farm and family- especially Apple Bloom. Rainbow Dash thought about how she'd never have the chance to join the Wonderbolts. When she realized that she'd likely never fly again, thanks to the chains keeping her a prisoner to the earth, the tomboy pegasus broke down in tears.
As all of this chaos occurred, King Sombra couldn't help but grin. His sense of control and power welling up within him. He was back, and this time not even the Princesses of the Sun and Moon would be able to stop him.
"Everypony kneel before me, your ruler, your master. You are all under my control, and I will make sure your enslavement lasts...FOREVER!"
Fires erupted. Beautiful, crystalline buildings were destroyed by sudden growths of black crystals. The library collapsed into a heap of rubble, a small pyroclastic cloud billowed around, causing some of the enslaved ponies near the fallen building to start gagging.
As Spike watched the library collapse and swallowed hard.
Twilight kept all of her attention on Spike, a silent rage billowing within her. If it weren't for the chains or the crystal prison she found herself in, she'd lunge at her little, scaly friend and start to choke him, screaming, "Why you little!" as he gagged.
While watching all of the destruction, all of the terrified ponies screaming for help, including all of his friends, Spike should have showed some sense of guilt and remorse. Instead, patting his stomach as he remembered how delicious the Crystal Heart tasted, he couldn't help but smile.
Even when a chain appeared around his neck, effectively adding him to the slave machine that was Sombra's empire, Spike couldn't stop grinning like an idiot. He ran his fingers over the chains, feeling the cold, metal surface. He should have been afraid. He should have felt a sense of guilt for putting, not only himself, but everyone he cared about into this horrible situation that saw no conceivable way out. But the Crystal Heart's taste lingered on his tongue, keeping him from feeling any of these things. A content sigh escaped his lips as he responded to Twilight's earlier question.
"Totally worth it."