Six years ago, an unimaginable horror known as Tirek came to Equestria. His power was nigh impossible, requiring the Elements, the Lovers and the Alicorns all to pour their very souls into holding him. In their absence, Prince Blueblood took the crown. But, Blueblood's reign is simply a mask for the Guard's dictatorship, while rebels cling to the idea of a free republic and strange cults tout the value of freedom from any governance. With all this, why would anypony spare a thought for the comet that filled the night sky for weeks before falling?
Weather: Cloudy Season: Spring Who's in power right now? Traditionalists Meteor Collected: 0%
A small black carriage rode across the desert, pulled by several guards. These guards did not wear the armor of the run-of the mill guards; they dressed a little more like this.
Balthasar sat within the carriage, bored out of his mind. All he had seen today was sand and a few interesting rock formations, but that was about it. This was the middle of nowhere. Absolutely nopony lived here...
...At least that's what Balthasar thought. Through the window of the carriage, Balthasar could see a farm. A farm? In the desert? Maybe it was a mirage. But he couldn't be sure. Suddenly, one of the wheels of the carriage broke as it fell into a pothole on the trail.
Balthasar opened up the carriage and stepped out. The farm was, in fact, real. It didn't disappear when he walked closer to it. Balthasar smiled, as he knew how lucky he was to have broken his carriage right in front of an actual pony's house. and approached the barn door, which he knocked on. He needed help with his carriage, and hopefully the farmer would be able to fix it. He hoped the pony who lived here wasn't hostile; if the owner of this house was a rebel, he'd be ruined.
It had been a while since Solar Chaser and Political Swagger secured the meteor shard, the piece of a puzzle Solar had a gut feeling would be able to bring peace back to Equestria. However, he missed his friend dearly, the meteor shard being the last thing that could remind him of him. He was also terrified at what had happened- Swagger was a rebel spy and executed publicly- Solar had watched it happen. His only friend in years dying right in front of him. First Ma and Pa, and now Swagger... he thought, holding his head as he kept the meteor shard close to him. He was going to protect it with his life, a promise to his late friend that he intended to keep.
His heavy heart jumped once he heard the door being knocked on- something that worried him. The guards had congratulated him before on helping them apprehend Swagger- he was terrified on what that would have meant for him. If the rebels believed that- he would be in serious danger of retaliation. Slowly going over to the door, the pegasus slowly opened it, peeking out to see a rather sharply-dressed pony, accompanied by some guards in some unfamiliar armor.
"C...Can I help you?" he asked, having slipped the meteor shard underneath his bandages- his lucky charm given to him by his parents, to keep it out of sight.
Balthasar smiled and bowed to the colt. "Hola, señor," he said as he bowed elegantly. "I could indeed use some assistance, but before I get to that, it would be impolite of me not to introduce myself. I am Don Balthasar Juan Carlos Flamenco de los Puertos de Marelaga."
He extended his hoof to the yellow colt in a friendly hoof shake. "A pleasure to meet you. Now, as for why I am coming to your doorstep, my carriage's wheel happened to run into a bump in the road, and now the wheel has broken. Now, I could ask you to go fix it right away, or maybe you could tell me a little about yourself. I am a merchant, after all, and meeting new and interesting ponies is a part of my job."
Balthasar couldn't help but notice a small lump sticking out from Solar's bandages. Was it a tumor? Balthasar couldn't help but feel a little sorry for the poor colt.
Solar was thrown off course by the fact this pony spoke Castaillion. He would have asked what the heck the pony said, but then Solar put two and two together based on what it could have sounded like. 'Hello Senior' was his literal interpretation. Before he could greet the stallion, he introduced himself while speaking Equestria, at least assuring him that a language barrier wasn't going to impede anything. Hesitantly accepting the stallion's hoof and shaking it, the farm-colt tried to smile. "I can't remember all that- but it's nice to meet you, Balthasar. My name is Solar Chaser." he replied before the stallion had explained his predicament.
"Ah. I might have some tools laying around in Pa's shed." he stated, nodding but thought of something to try to humor the stallion. "Well, there isn't much to talk about me...Although I do run this farm, my ma and pa used to own it." he stated, gesturing for the stallion to wait for a moment as he zipped out of the house to go to the shed, picking up a few essential tools before bringing them with him. "I can get your carriage in good working order with no problem." he smiled, at least feeling he had something to distract himself.
Balthasar nodded and smiled at Solar. "You seem to be a good soul, Solar Chaser. It is an honor to be in your presence."
Balthasar took a bottle of wine from his cape and poured himself some as Solar brought the tools over. "You are a farmer, ah? Some of my favorite ponies I've met have been farmers, good, hard-working, honest folk they are. And if they weren't around, I wouldn't have my treasured wine!" He chuckled and downed the glass he poured himself.
Chuckling softly, Solar smiled as Balthasar seemed to be enjoying himself. "Don't mention it- just doin' what I gotta do is all." he replied with a modest tone as he made his way to the carriage. The wheel itself wasn't damaged too badly- nothing that some tape and glue wouldn't rectify until a replacement could be acquired. However, the pony knelt down to get a better look as he set his tools to the side, not knowing that part of his bandages had a very slight tear in them.
He was then asked if he traveled, to which Solar shook his head. "No...not much- to be honest, I almost never leave the farm." he said, proceeding to work on the wheel while Balthasar undoubtedly began to respond with some stories about how traveling was a wonder to try. A roll of tape in his mouth, glue in the other, Solar began to patch up the wheel. He applied the wood-glue to the broken sides, using his legs to pinch the sides together to allow for them to stick.
Counting in his head up to twenty, listening to Balthasar, the pegasus soon grabbed a hoof full of nails- about four in total as he positioned the first one on an angle, on the inside of the wheel as he used his free hoof to drive it in. He did the same, but on the opposite side of the fracture of the first. It was a trick his pa once told him- using the wood glue to be a foundation- then use nails in a cross-over pattern to act as support He did the same pattern, only on the outside of the wheel as he finished.
"Alright, just about done." he smiled, wrapping some tape around the fracture, which had been nailed secured and the glue drying by then. It didn't hurt to have a third layer of support. "There we are, good as-" he went to say, although standing up he felt the meteor shard shift, which cut the bandage that concealed it. His first instinct was to catch the shard, making sure he kept it close, but the brief moment made him forgot about the cloth bandages until he felt them unravel from his legs. "Crud!" he panicked, trying to use his other hoof to keep them secure, but it was too late- his lucky charm had been cut off.
Gathering the bandages, he checked to see just what kind of damage was done- as he could always put them back on later. He was too preoccupied with that to realize his cutiemark was showing.
"Ah, I see," said Balthasar as he drank his wine while Solar fixed his cart. "But if you ever feel the need to travel, there's some very exotic places out there! And I have a ship. So if you ever need to-"
The bandages fell off, revealing a sharp shard of meteor and the stallion's cutie mark: Celestia's sun. Balthasar's eyes went wide and he dropped his wine bottle just before he had poured himself another glass. The guards, hearing the sound of the wine bottle fall, turned around and saw the sun, the sun of the Princess herself, upon the colt's flank.
"I...Dios mio," Balthasar choked on his words. He just couldn't believe it: only one other pony had that cutie mark, and it was Celestia. It was a sign that either this colt, this humble farmer, was either the true heir to the throne because of his association with the sun, or that he was related to Celestia herself.
"My friends...." said Balthasar in a shaky voice, manly tears of shock and joy beginning to pour down his cheeks. "...We have been lied to. Blueblood cannot possibly be the true king."
An older guard by the name of Strong Boulder took off his helmet in the presence of this son of Celestia. "This colt has the mark of the Princess herself...He is the one who is meant to raise the sun in her place: The Sun King... The other guards and Balthasar began murmuring in agreement.
The sound of Balthasar dropping his wine bottle caught the pegasus's attention as he looked over, seeing Balthasar up in tears for some strange reason. Listening to the shaky voice almost frightened the colt, as he did not understand why the merchant pony was so shocked to begin with. It wasn't until Strong Boulder removed his helmet and spoke out that things made a little more sense- but still confused the heck out of Solar.
Completely unaware of his own cutiemark, Solar's first instinct when he heard about 'The Sun King', the colt who had Celestia's sun on his flank. "Sun King? Where?" he asked, looking around, his face showing his utter bewilderment. This earned a chuckle from one of the guards, and it wasn't until the pegasus felt a very slight chill on his flank did he bother to look, seeing that they were referring to him. "HOLY BUCK!" he yelped, staring for a few moments before he registered what Strong Boulder had said to him.
"W-Wait, hold on...I'm no king- I have never been a royal." he tried to refute the statement that Strong Boulder, Balthasar, and the other guards seemed to have agreed upon.
Another guard, Shamrock, the one who chuckled, removed his helmet and knelt alongside Strong Boulder. "Never been a noble? You have always been a noble with a mark like that! THE SUN KING!"
A third guard, Volcanic Ash, joined the other two and Balthasar. "Your bandages were hiding the key to your destiny, but their removal...It is a sign. A sign that you must grow into the king Equestria needs!THE SUN KING!"
Balthasar removed his hat and delivered his speech. "The ponies of Equestria have not much time until the country is broken apart and set to flames by Guard and Rebel alike. I have only known this colt for a short while, but I have faith, that with assistance from the right ponies, he could become a fair, wise, and noble ruler. The loss of his bandages is indeed a sign! A sign that the sun has RISEN! THE SUN KING!" Balthasar drew his scimitar, knelt, and pointed the sword at the farmcolt. "THE SUN KING!"
"THE SUN KING!" repeated the guards, also kneeling and laying down their spears.
As his contradiction was refuted by their firm belief in the cutie mark, Solar backed up a little, frightened by the sudden turn of events. He wasn't a king- he had no clue how to be a ruler. The pegasus slowly dropped onto the ground, holding his head as his eyes shut, naturally overwhelmed by all of this.
He tried to make sense of all of this- how could he be the future king of Equestria- what could he possibly do to end this ongoing civil war? He wasn't an alicorn, he wasn't even a proper fighter.
Balthasar and the guards continued saying their praises, but upon seeing how overwhelmed the colt was becoming, Balthasar stood up and put his hat on. The guards continued mindlessly cheering.
" 'Ey!" shouted Balthasar to the guards. "Enough! We're intimidating him!" The guards put their helmets on and quieted down. Balthasar approached Solar Chaser, a concerned look on his face.
"My deepest apologies, señor," said Balthasar. "That was a lot of information for you to take in, and we should not have made such a big show of this. Is there anything we may do for you to make it up to you for being so obnoxious?"
As the cheering slowly subsided after Balthasar's admonishment, Solar opened his eyes and looked up, seeing the concerned look on the stallion's face. Slowly getting up, the pegasus tried to think of how this stallion could rectify what just happened, and only one thing came across his mind. "I...It's ok...but I would really appreciate an explanation...I mean, half of what you said made no sense to me, and the other half- I don't even know what to do." he admitted, still clutching the meteor shard close to his chest.
Balthasar stroked his beard as he thought of a way to make explaining this easy for Solar Chaser to understand.
"First, I'm sure you at least know that Equestria is ruled by a king, King Blueblood, at the moment." Balthasar's voice lowered. "You know what? How about we explain this further inside? We could get in trouble if any of Blueblood's enforcers hear this, and they could truly be anywhere, even in this barren desert."
"Okay," whispered Balthasar. "Let us continue. We just need to be safe when talking about controversial subjects such as this. But anyway, there are many ponies, even some of the guards themselves, like the ones that were pulling my carriage, who have suspicions that Blueblood may not actually be the true king of Equestria."
Balthasar would at least let this information register in the colt's head before continuing. "Do you understand this so far? I just want to make sure you are comprehending this before I get into more of the explanation."
Letting the ponies in was something he was used to, and out of habit, Solar had gotten plates of food ready for Balthasar and the rest of the group as the Castallion began to explain. "I heard of the dissent- my ma and pa had spoken about that topic before the enforcers took them." he replied, laying plates down for the group.
"But this whole 'Sun King' thing...that is what I don't understand." he stated to make it clear that was the topic he didn't know about. He just wanted things to return to normal- but so far things were just getting stranger and stranger.
Balthasar nodded as the plates were set down. "Well, Strong Boulder came up with that title. He's old and a little crazy, so he probably just thought it sounded cool or something."
Strong Boulder spoke up. "I am not as crazy as you think, Balthasar. There have been rumors among the guards on several occasions that Celestia has had children. And it was said that these foals would be sent elsewhere to live the lives of commoners. Solar's circumstances are not all that different from a story I heard on duty in Saddle Arabia. From what I heard, Princess Celestia had given birth to a foal who had a cutie mark so similar to that of hers that she sent him to a remote place where nopony would find him. She didn't want the public knowing of this ."