Author Note: This prolouge really doesn't have anything to do with the fic itself. It's mainly used to get some feedback on my prose and writing style. I will also be posting pictures with my fic where appropriate, so you'll see artist credits all over the place too. Other than that, feel free to read and leave your comments in forums. Tear it to shreds people! Enjoy!



Working Title: Prolouge

The city of Canterlot. After weeks of travel, I had finally arrived. The capital that had once been the center of art, culture, and innovation now lay in ruins before my eyes. It had been quite some time since its inhabitants had left their paradise. The magical land with fertile soil, peaceful citizens, and amiable weather was nothing more than a legend now. The green, hilly pastures filled with brightly colored plants were now dusty dunes lined with dead trees and withering stalks. The sky, though sunny, featured a thin, ever-present haze that shielded the blue sky beyond it from view. Not a single soul was to be seen. Despite its current form, this land had once been a popular setting for the fairytales I had heard when I was young. Stories of the marvelous adventures and wonder, whose conflicts seemed trivial compared to the fighting and bickering that plagued my home hundreds of miles away.


Regardless, my opportunity had finally arrived. As a rising historian at the local university, I had read many books detailing the history of Canterlot, but the accounts had left me troubled. Many contained loose ends, some skipped time periods nearly hundreds of years long, and others would directly contradict another source. I had queried my professor about this many times, but each attempt was met with the same reply. “No one cares about that place anymore, just let it go.” he would say. Unfortunately, he was correct. It was said that only a small amount of books managed leave Canterlot intact. Others were either lost, destroyed, or so old that the text was just a line of smudged ink page after page. The few that were still readable are only available to the privileged elite. 


Despite the snickering and gossip from my colleagues, I was determined to see the land for myself. I didn’t know exactly what I’d find, but it would be more than could ever be uncovered in the university library. Gathering up old artwork, children’s books, and anything else I could find pertaining to Canterlot, I mounted a miniature expedition to the fabled region alone. My hopes seemed to fade shortly upon arrival, however. Most of the buildings were crumbling, or already leveled to the ground. Hardly any plants were thriving beside the occasional weed. Any object that could give even a small clue would have most likely been crushed beneath the wreckage.


I had come too far to give up just yet though. After tearing through by belongings, I consulted an old picture from the depths of my bag. Depicting a brilliant castle upon a steep mountainside, I held the painting up. The artist’s bountiful and regal landscape was barely comparable to the desolate scene in front of me. Sure enough, however, there stood a mountain range sitting on the horizon, whose shape and surrounding hills outlined perfectly with everything the picture. Everything except for the castle, that is. It was quite a walk from the ruins where I stood, but it was better than giving up after coming so far.



Credit to CrappyUnicorn (DA, I think)


It was late afternoon when I finally arrived at the base of mountain, and I was met with amazing spectacle. There before me sat the crumbled ruins of a castle, overturned, and smashed into the ground as if it had fallen from the protruding ledge high upon the cliff. The bottom of the tumbled structure was in complete pieces on the ground, but the top still seemed to be holding itself together. After dropping my things to the ground, I began scaling the stone rocks, making my way slowly to the top. There was a cracked window about halfway to the top. The dust and dirt covering the glass made it impossible to see inside, so I picked up a nearby stone and tossed it through the window, clearing the way. I stood on the window sill, kicking remnants of broken glass into the dimly lit hole and waited for the sound of shattering glass in an attempt to judge the depth of the pit.


Suddenly, the ledge faltered and fell apart beneath my feet. I fumbled for a holding but to no avail. Down and down I fell, waving wildly, praying for any kind of support to prevent the impending crash. Brushing against some fabric, I twisted my body around and clutched onto it, slowing my descent. With a hearty thump, I landed on a stone cold floor. The walls of the pit seemed to resemble an old welcome hall, but with the castle now on its side, the floor and ceiling had become towering walls. Up towards the window, the penetrating sunbeam seemed so far away.


There was a door nearby that sat embedded in the floor, so I broke it open and slowly lowered myself into the next room. Cracks in the walls and rubble offered some light as I wormed my way through the rocks hoping to find some possible hope of escape. There were messy kitchens, inverted bedrooms, and what used to be a large dance hall. None of them seemed to provide a feasible way to freedom. Only one last door remained unopened. Bracing myself for inevitable defeat, I slammed against the doors, slowly creaking one of them open.


Squeezing into the tiny opening I managed to create, I found myself in staring into an illuminated library. Thousands of books were scattered about, coating the floor with paper and bindings. The bookshelves hung empty, bolted in the surrounding walls. On the far side of the room, a sizable gap in the fallen boulders welcomed the sun into the room. A thrilling excitement overtook me. Never had I seen so many books in one place! The sea of knowledge before me sat calm and still, waiting to be explored! None of it would matter though, if I couldn’t make it out. Maneuvering carefully around the books, I made my way to the opposite wall. The hole seemed rather small and it would be a tight fit, but it was possible to get myself out.


I squirmed outside, emptied my bag, and gathered as many books as I could from the wreckage. Despite their age, the some of the books had held together rather well, their ink and bindings still intact. There were books on magic, cooking, etiquette, and even massive volumes of encyclopedias. However, there was one book in particular that had caught my eye. Inside its pages contained the life and journey of two royal sisters that had once ruled the land. For you, I have translated the following chapters into the modern language.