The Master Mev: Chapter 36 – Candid to Cadance to Crystal


Rainbow Dash, Sweetie Belle, Applejack, Twilight Sparkle, and Spike arrived safely to the Crystal Empire on Sunday morning, just as everyone planned. The Equestrian party was escorted by Crystal Pony guards to the throne room to meet Princess Cadance and Shining Armor. Sunburst was also in attendance and charged with looking after Flurry Heart.

The princesses bowed to exchange pleasantries as officially as one would expect though before Cadance could say or do anything else, Twilight announced, “Master Rainbow Dash and I would like a word with the two of you, as in, just the two of you and the two of us, if we can.”

At hearing the title, Sunburst’s ears immediately perked up and he adjusted his glasses, starting to concentrate and remember something.

Rainbow flew over to Sweetie Belle’s side, wherein Sweetie Belle magically pulled out a letter from Princess Celestia, with an additional signature from Princess Luna this time. The young unicorn levitated it over into Rainbow’s grip.

Cadance and Shining Armor glanced at each other but nodded and led Twilight Sparkle and Rainbow Dash to a smaller room in the castle, where every pony could sit comfortably on a reclining chaise lounge if they wished. Cadance did in fact choose to do so while Shining Armor chose to simply sit on his haunches close to his wife’s side, at full attention.

Twilight paced for a few moments, staring up at her hovering master, before choosing a chaise lounge of her own.

Rainbow descended from her flapping hover and passed the scroll in Cadance’s direction. The alicorn princess ruling the Crystal Empire opened it and read the contents. Her eyes widened as she did so, but she stayed quiet and read until its end. Shining Armor’s reaction was more subtle but otherwise the same.

Finally, Cadance put the scroll aside. “A Master Mev?” she asked aloud.

Rainbow bowed as her instincts inclined her to do. “Yes, Your Highness.”

“Can you tell us more?” Shining Armor asked. “We’re glad you have Princess Celestia’s and Princess Luna’s approval, but vampires aren’t something we know much about besides what we read or hear about in stories, and the closest thing I know of to a magic-eating vampire is Tirek.”

“I’m not quite like him,” Rainbow noted. She relayed much mev information on the nature of how her powers worked as she had done in the past before passing a turn to Twilight to speak.

Twilight smiled nervously at them. “There are two types of mevs. Rainbow Dash is the master type. The ponies she bonds with are another kind called a fledgling.” She took a deep breath. “I am one of her fledglings, the last and sixth in her pack when we formed, Rexa. My title is a gift from my master for her to use to address or refer to me.”

Shining Armor and Cadance looked at each other and at her, saying nothing for a long time. Finally, it was Shining Armor who said, “But everything’s okay, right? You have this magic-eating business under control. Nopony’s been hurt.”

“No one’s magic has been taken without their explicit permission,” Rainbow told them. “I have not physically harmed anyone, but I have and will use my powers to scare creatures to eat their fear should the occasion call for it. Rexa has not been a part of those times.”

“Scared them? How?” Cadance asked.

“I could give you a demonstration with the understanding that it might scare you as well,” Rainbow offered in a low voice with a tiny smile.

The husband and wife again looked at each other and then, “We’re definitely curious,” Shining Armor said.

Rainbow Dash gave them warnings about how the fear snare worked, promising their safety, cast it, and summoned Blitz. Her ghostly serpent pet performed her air-slithering circle with its ascension, tightening, and descent before she faded back into the floor.

“That’s actually kind of a cool trick,” Cadance admitted with a tiny excited smile of her own.

“I’ve grown quite fond of it as well,” the master mev told her.

“Well,” Shining Armor said, “this is certainly interesting and startling news, but we are glad to be friends with a creature of your character, Master Rainbow Dash. And Twily, don’t worry. I can tell that you’re still you and did this to help out one of your closest friends to keep other ponies safe.”

Twilight breathed a huge sigh of relief and went to hug her family, soon followed by her more fun greeting with Cadance as they sang, “Sunshine, sunshine, ladybugs awake! Clap your hooves and do a little shake!” Rainbow watched with a pleased smile.

“Judging by this letter, your introduction involves more than the announcement of your existence,” Cadance noted.

“It might,” Rainbow admitted. “I would like permission to scout the Crystal Empire with Applejack and Sweetie Belle while Twilight spends time here with her family,” Rainbow requested. “We have an interest in the magic here, but we won’t be taking any without asking.”

“I think I know what interests you,” Cadance said, “and I’ll give some time to think about it while you do your scouting. So, permission granted.”


Applejack, Sweetie Belle, and Rainbow Dash stared upward at the Crystal Heart. Spike had left to enjoy his time as a regarded hero and enthrall those interested to hear his tales. Sunburst had left, saying he needed to find some research after Flurry Heart was back with her parents and aunt to spend time together. While crystal ponies were out and about, they were no strangers to the three ponies looking on at their prized relic, so they went about their day with little awareness and attention to the ensuing discussion.

“You want some of that?” Applejack asked, eyeing her surroundings to be sure no other ponies were within hearing range of the group. “How?”

“That’s why we’re here, Fyra. We need ideas,” the master mev told her. Rainbow hovered in the air, studying the heart. She, too, kept a careful eye that no one was listening besides Sweetie Belle. “The simple thing is to get you and maybe Twilight to eat some but only a little bit. Just kind of stand off to the sides and suck in a tiny amount. Then I can eat it from you to run it through the central spot of the reserve we all host together.”

“But you want to do something more complicated?” Sweetie wondered.

Rainbow smirked. “More like cooler, but I need a good reason and at the moment, I don’t have one. It would be fun to use the crown, but that’s not a good enough reason. For now, how about you draw the heart,” she suggested. “You’ll get some practice in on a simple shape, even if I can’t add any flair to do this job.”

Sweetie opened her saddlebag and obeyed, choosing to sit on her haunches, and gaze on at her reference.

“What would the reserved magic be used for?” Applejack asked.

“Mainly, a backup to prevent something like what happened before the Crystalling. In theory, that could be used to thaw other things if we’ve also got magic from a crystal pony in the reserve,” Rainbow explained.

“How in the hay are we gonna get that?” Applejack wondered, clearly flummoxed, still managing to see their conversation was safe from eavesdropping.

“We ask,” the master mev said. “I give the reasons I just said. If they decline, they decline. The Crystal Empire’s gone this long without a plan. They might continue.”

“Can you actually bite a crystal pony? They are different,” Applejack considered.

Rainbow rubbed a hoof up to her chin. “I think I’d be able to. Hey! Maybe I can actually change up my teeth a little. I hardly ever do it. That would be cool.”

Applejack rolled her eyes, but it was in a friendly half-smile sort of way.

“How’s this, Master?” Sweetie offered up her scribble.

“Good. You’re getting better. You bring anything to color it with?” Rainbow asked.

The unicorn filly nodded.

“Color it too,” Rainbow told her.

Sweetie did as told.

“Okay, how about this,” Applejack offered. “A solid magic artifact like this should have something solid as well instead of just its magic in the reserve, right? Ain’t it like super ancient, so you need to handle it carefully and all. You’ve got Sweetie looking after that tiny piece of pearl. Maybe she could look after a tiny piece of Crystal Heart too, if we can somehow get it without damaging the thing. Like if we ever need to replace or replenish, it’s better to come from something solid we make while we take care of it.”

Rainbow lips curled upward into a very pleased smile. “Perfect,” she said. “That is a good reason. Now I definitely got something cooler and yes, more complicated, and we get to use the crown! If Cadance lets us move forward with what I have in mind.”

“Here it is, Rainbow,” Sweetie showed her completed drawing.

“Good! Hold onto it. We might actually use it, and you’ll see why I’m having you learn this.” The master mev was vibrant in her voice and forceful in her gestures, renewed energy guiding her to make Applejack’s suggestion real.

At that point, Sunburst approached, and he looked very agitated. “What are you doing?” he asked, almost as if to accuse the group.

“Oh hi Sunburst,” Applejack greeted him. “We’re just talking shop over here. Did you already finish your research?”

“Master?” he asked to the air as sincerely as he could muster despite his frustrations.

Rainbow bowed from where she hovered in respect of the troubled effort. “Crystaller Sunburst.”

He tried to narrow his eyes and get a good look at her, but all he could see was the same sky blue pegasus he had always known. He looked at the other two, who also looked as normal as ever. He gulped. “The Master Mev?” he asked.

Sweetie and Applejack nervously glanced in Rainbow’s direction.

Rainbow smiled. “Can I help you?” was all she offered with her playful grin.

Sunburst looked at the heart, at her, at her servants, and at the crystal ponies, some of whom were now paying closer attention to the scene than before. “May I speak with you inside?” he managed.

Rainbow glanced around the same as he did before nodding as well. “Certainly.”

Sunburst led the trio to his study at the castle itself. Applejack stood guard at the door to watch the scene from inside the room. Sweetie meanwhile stood protectively at Rainbow’s side, wearing her saddlebags containing her freshly completed drawing of the Crystal Heart.

Sunburst sat at a desk, staring at some notes sitting by a red-bound book that Rainbow and Sweetie knew, and Applejack had at least heard mention of many times. At last he turned his seat to look at Rainbow Dash. “You are a master mev, correct?” He was much calmer and more curious from the review of his notes. The Crystal Heart was safe for now.

“That is correct,” Rainbow told him.

“When did it happen?” Sunburst inquired.

“Weeks ago,” Rainbow answered. “A little over four weeks ago.”

“Do you have a pack? Is Starlight or Twilight in it?” he questioned further.

“I have a full pack,” Rainbow replied. “No names yet, Crystaller Sunburst.”

Sunburst nodded. “I guess I can understand that. So, what are you planning to do with the Crystal Heart?”

“You’ve got the book,” Rainbow gestured. “I plan to do my job.”

“Can I watch?” Sunburst asked. “Whatever it is you end up doing. Would it be alright to see it?”

Rainbow gave that question serious consideration. “If you can help me have it arranged so that the curtain used for the Crystalling can also be used for what I plan to do, yes, you can watch.” She smiled sincerely. “It’s gonna be awesome.”

Sweetie looked up with quiet interest at that promise, recalling how eager Rainbow became before Sunburst arrived at the scene.

“I’ll certainly see what I can do,” the unicorn stallion agreed.

“Good. First, I need talk to Princess Cadance about that and a couple of other things. Let’s go check on them,” she suggested to every pony in the room.


Rainbow and Cadance walked side by side in a secluded hallway of the castle for the Crystal Empire. “Well, I’m ready to hear what you have in mind, Master Rainbow Dash.”

“Three things. Magic from you, magic from a crystal pony, and magic from the Crystal Heart,” Rainbow said bluntly.

Cadance paused. “I’m not sure I’m okay with that. You wish to eat my magic? Why?”

“To reserve it for if you need it later. The magic I take now, or whenever is convenient for you to let me eat it, develops and grows over time so if I do need to return it to you, you’ll have what you need to return to your standard amount,” Rainbow explained. “Not to mention alicorn magic really is delicious.”

Cadance blushed without comment.

Rainbow continued, “You’d have it back in three days instead of seven, and it might help me with the stuff I have in mind for the other two.”

Cadance gulped. “Why a crystal pony? It would be difficult to find a volunteer.”

“Crystal ponies power the Crystal Heart,” Rainbow answered. “If I have magic from both, that makes it easier to reserve magic for the Crystal Empire. What if the heart ever shatters again? And what if it doesn’t happen at the same time as a Royal Crystalling? I am one giant backup plan, Your Highness, and I’m offering to let you in on that.”

Cadance nodded. She understood that match.

Rainbow added, “As a little bonus, I do believe with enough time in the reserve, the combined power would give my team the ability to thaw….well, anything we find that might need a magical type of thawing.”

“I suppose that would be a useful power,” Cadance admitted. “But how would you go about eating the magic from the Crystal Heart? We need it to protect the empire now as it is. It has to remain intact.”

Rainbow’s eyes twitched with an excited smile. “Let me tell you what I’ve got in mind. Here’s what I’m thinking…a serious team effort…”