|Ponyville Mysteries: Peryton Panic|
|Published||January 2, 2018|
|Previous||My Little Pony: Equestria Girls: A Friendship to Remember|
|Next||My Little Pony: Beyond Equestria: Pinkie Pie Steps Up|
|Allusions • Little, Brown and Company • Hachette Book Group|
My Little Pony: Ponyville Mysteries: Peryton Panic by "Penumbra Quill" (collective pen name of Michael Vogel and Nicole Dubuc) is the thirty-second book in a series of chapter books published by Little, Brown and Company and the fourth entry in the "Ponyville Mysteries" series.
|Table of contents|
Dreams and distrust
The story begins with "The Pony" from the previous books annoyed by the involvement of Princess Twilight Sparkle in the recent string of mysterious events in Ponyville. In the Everfree Forest's Livewood, The Pony working with Lilymoon's father Blue Moon plants seeds in the ground at the edge of the Livewood's barrier and starts enacting a spell to open it.
Sweetie Belle has a dream about playing tag with a phoenix in the Everfree Forest. After a bizarre encounter with Big McIntosh, she realizes that she is dreaming and looks for Princess Luna. However, she instead runs into a large, hooved creature with giant antlers, white eyes, and wings of smoke. When the creature appears to attack Sweetie Belle, she wakes up from the nightmare with a scream. Rarity bursts into the room with worry and helps Sweetie Belle go back to sleep with a lullaby that she used to sing to her when she was little.
The next morning, the Cutie Mark Crusaders bring Lilymoon and Ambermoon to Fluttershy's Sweet Feather Sanctuary. After the recent incident involving the appearance of the Olden Pony, the Mane Six are suspicious of Lilymoon's family and their activities, and the Crusaders want to prove Lilymoon and Ambermoon's innocence.
At the Sanctuary, the Crusaders, Lilymoon, and Ambermoon help Fluttershy give all the animals baths. Ambermoon reveals that, after the talk Princess Twilight had with her and Lilymoon's parents, their mother Lumi Nation doesn't want them hanging out with the Crusaders anymore. Before the Crusaders can protest, the animals suddenly start getting agitated and run away from something, creating a mess in the sanctuary. Fluttershy believes Lilymoon and Ambermoon to be the cause of the animals' agitation.
A disturbance in Ponyville
Later that evening, the Crusaders are brought to Twilight's castle, and the Mane Six tell them to stop hanging out with Lilymoon and Ambermoon because of the recent troubles surrounding their family. As the Crusaders protest, Granny Smith suddenly bursts in and informs them of a shadowy monster she saw at Sweet Apple Acres. Applejack believes Granny simply had a bad dream, but numerous other ponies show up outside the castle saying they encountered the same creature. Twilight and her friends dismiss the ponies' accounts as merely tall tales, but the Crusaders believe they're worth looking into.
That night, Sweetie Belle has another dream about getting the lead role in the school play. When she finds herself in a dark forest, she hears a chime-like sound and runs into the same creature from her previous nightmare. As the creature stares at Sweetie Belle, burning pain suddenly fills her body, and she wakes up once again.
The next day at school, Sweetie Belle tells Apple Bloom and Scootaloo about her dream, and they realize they all had the same exact dream. At recess, they tell Lilymoon about the creature they saw in their dream, and Lilymoon identifies the creature as a peryton—the very same creature she was researching when she got her cutie mark. When the Crusaders wonder what the peryton wants, Lilymoon says the best way to find out is to ask it.
Summoning the peryton
Against the wishes of their sisters and friends, the Cutie Mark Crusaders work together with Lilymoon and Ambermoon to summon the peryton to the Everfree Forest. Using their aunt Eclipse's spell book, Lilymoon and Ambermoon prepare the summoning ritual. As the fillies dance around the ritual circle, Ambermoon recites the spell incantation, and the peryton appears. Lilymoon attempts to communicate with the creature, but it doesn't listen to her and flies into an agitated rage.
Sensing that the peryton is scared or in pain, Sweetie Belle starts singing Rarity's lullaby, and the peryton becomes docile. Unfortunately, the Crusaders' sisters soon approach searching for the missing fillies. The peryton runs away, and the Crusaders hide out of fear of being punished. As a result of her failure to communicate with the peryton, Lilymoon starts to doubt her special talent.
Some time later, the Crusaders, Lilymoon, and Ambermoon sneak back to the greenhouse behind Lilymoon's house. When Scootaloo finally confronts the Moon sisters about everything that's been going on lately, Lilymoon and Ambermoon get defensive and plead innocence. Lilymoon starts doubting her cutie mark even more, and the Crusaders say they just want to figure out what's going on. Just then, Lilymoon and Ambermoon's mother Lumi Nation enters and accuses the Crusaders of throwing around accusations without any proof. Frustrated by all the suspicion that's been cast on her family, Lumi Nation demands that the Crusaders leave.
The secret of the Livewood
That night, after receiving an angry scolding from Rarity, Sweetie Belle goes to bed and has another strange dream about a Songbird Serenade concert. After falling into a raging river and ending up at the Ponyville Schoolhouse, she realizes she's dreaming and encounters the peryton again. Following what seems to be the peryton's instructions, Sweetie Belle rings a loud bell and meets Apple Bloom and Scootaloo. With the Crusaders together in the dream world, Princess Luna appears before them with an explanation as to what's been happening.
In a crystal classroom, Luna recalls the time when she turned into Nightmare Moon. During her transformation into Nightmare Moon, she had created a helmet from her turbulent emotions called the Helm of Shadows. When the Mane Six returned her to normal with the Elements of Harmony, the Helm was too powerful to be destroyed and remained intact. Fearing that others would be corrupted by its power, Luna and Celestia buried the Helm in the Everfree Forest and sealed it inside an enclosure of living forest: the Livewood. They also created the Timberwolves and summoned the peryton to guard the Livewood.
However, for reasons unknown, the peryton created an additional security measure: a lock that only three ponies with matching cutie marks can open. Because of this, Luna asks the Cutie Mark Crusaders to protect the Livewood and make sure it is never opened.
The next day, after being escorted to school by their older sisters, the Crusaders share what they've learned about the Livewood from Princess Luna. Apple Bloom remembers Lilymoon and Ambermoon's father mentioning the Livewood when they went to their house for the first time, and Scootaloo remembers that everyone in Lilymoon's family has the same cutie mark. They start to believe the Moon family is trying to break into the Livewood themselves, but they are unsure if Lilymoon and Ambermoon are involved. Realizing the peryton is the common thread linking everything, the Crusaders decide to defy their sisters further and find the creature once more.
Defenders of the Livewood
After school, the Crusaders sneak off to the Everfree Forest again, and they run into Lilymoon and Ambermoon, who had also snuck out against their parents' wishes. Sweetie Belle uses Rarity's lullaby to summon the peryton, and it leads them to the outer edge of the Livewood, which was brightly lit. There, they find Lilymoon and Ambermoon's parents Blue Moon and Lumi Nation. Before the fillies can figure out what's going on, they notice the Livewood's Timberwolf guardians trying to break free and attack them. Lumi Nation quickly escorts her daughters out of the area while Blue Moon escorts the Crusaders out.
However, instead of guiding the Crusaders out of the forest, Blue Moon vanishes into the shadows, and the Crusaders are suddenly stuck to the ground. As the Timberwolves get closer to breaking out of the Livewood, "The Pony" appears: Lilymoon and Ambermoon's aunt Eclipse. Eclipse intends to leave the Crusaders to the Timberwolves while she uses her family members to break the peryton's lock and claim the Helm of Shadows.
As Eclipse disappears into the shadows, Sweetie Belle tries to call the peryton for help, but it doesn't come, and the threat of the Timberwolves looms even closer. When the Crusaders finally break free of Eclipse's freezing spell, Sweetie Belle remembers that the peryton is a creature of darkness—it's afraid of the light. After she gets rid of the source of light illuminating the forest, the peryton leaps out to save the Crusaders from the attacking Timberwolves.
With the danger passed, the Cutie Mark Crusaders decide to tell the Mane Six the truth of what's been happening, and they resolve to stop the Moon family from getting the Helm of Shadows.
In Canterlot, Princess Celestia finishes raising the sun as Luna joins her on the castle balcony. Celestia expresses deep concern for the Crusaders and the burden they now carry, but Luna believes their youth will be their greatest strength and protect them from the Helm of Shadows' dark influence.
- Rarity: Now, I know it's been ages and you're much too grown up for it. But perhaps, just for tonight, I might sing the rose song?
- Apple Bloom: Crooked cattails, Sweetie Belle, stop yawnin'! Those things are downright contagious!
- Fluttershy: I'm sorry. It's just that the animals have never been scared like this before. And the only new thing in my sanctuary was... them.
- Sweetie Belle: What about loyalty? And kindness? It's not very generous to turn our backs on our new friends!
- Pinkie Pie: Ooh, ooh, do my element!
- Sweetie Belle: Um... it's really hard to share laughter when you're not allowed to talk to somepony?
- Lyra Heartstrings: I'm telling you, it was a chimera! I saw goat hoofprints in the garden!
- Bon Bon: Chimeras also have lion paws. Or are you forgetting who's the monster expert here?
- Cheerilee: Diamond Tiara? You'll play the Dragon Princess.
- Diamond Tiara: Ew. A Dragon? At least I get a crown.
- Scootaloo: Just a silly dream I had.
- Apple Bloom: I had a dream about us doing a class musical, too!
- Sweetie Belle: So did I!And I got the lead role, but I couldn't sing!
- Scootaloo: Did you run outside of the school into this weird, dark forest place?
- Apple Bloom: And see this super-strange creature made of, like, shadow, with wings and horns?
- Scootaloo: And did it have—
- Cutie Mark Crusaders: Burning white eyes?!
- Apple Bloom: We musta all had the same dream!
- Ambermoon: Peryton, watcher, guide. Guardian in shadow-hide. Come to us with answers true. Heed our call, we summon you!
- Sweetie Belle: A rose has thorns to keep it safe, but ponies have not one. A wild rose blooms where it is placed, but ponies seek the sun. A rose is sweet and beautiful; its scent is lush and rare. But a pony's love is greater yet, and nothing can compare. So if I had to choose between a rose and pony friend, I'd throw away the flower quick and keep you till the end.
- Rarity: I simply cannot believe you, Sweetie Belle! I have been up all night, running myself ragged through the woods! I must look simply atrocious!
- Apple Bloom: It's a good thing we can see one another in our sleep, 'cause accordin' to Applejack, I ain't leavin' my room till I'm as old as Granny Smith.
- Scootaloo: You found us! I'm sorry, Rainbow Dash! Please don't tell Auntie Lofty and Aunt Holiday! I don't want to be grounded foreverrrrrrrrrr!
- Ambermoon: You're our friends. The first friends we've had in a long time.
- Apple Bloom: Why're you doin' this?
- Eclipse: Oh no, no dearie. This isn't where I explain all my years of planning to you nosy fillies. This is where I leave you to the Timberwolves so I can carry out my plans without your constant meddling.
- Scootaloo: You'll never get the Helm of Shadows!
- Eclipse: Well, well, it appears you know more than you were letting on. I assume you also know about those, then? With you three gone, I'll have the only ponies in Equestria with the ability to access the pillars' magic. I've made sure of that. So yes. I believe the Helm will be mine.
- Sweetie Belle: Let's go home. We've got a job to do.