"Where is he?" Celestia said, tapping her hoof impatiently on the marble floor.
"Sister, you need to calm down," Luna said as she placed a hoof on her sister. "You get like this every time. Brass Beast hasn't let us down yet," she finished sitting back down on her sisters bed.
"I know, I know, it's just been so long since we've had real food," she said, now staring out her balcony door.
Luna let out a soft chuckle. "I thought you said Flambé made some of the finest food in Equestria."
"That's the problem," Celestia said, throwing herself onto the bed. "It’s the finest food, but would it kill him to make some eggs and hay bacon strips?" she finished, giving her sister a pleading look.
Geez, and I thought I was a drama queen, Luna said to herself as she stared at her sister. However, before she could call her sister out, the large chamber doors flew open, revealing Nightmare Moon and Discord.
"Do you two really have to do that with every door?" asked a slightly annoyed Celestia as she used her magic to fix the doors once again.
Nightmare nodded. "Yes, yes I do. You won't let me enter in my previous fashion."
"That's because your old fashion involved you entering a room with several lightning clouds and cackling like a mad mare," Celestia said, glaring at the midnight black Alicorn.
Nightmare shrugged. "My way had some royal flare."
"Yeah, but you're not royalty," Luna retorted
Nightmare glared at Luna, obviously not amused by her comment. "I was born from a piece of your mind, therefore I'm royalty," she finished with a smug smile.
Celestia chuckled. "She has a point sister. Though Nightmare, hurling lightning bolts around wildly as you enter a room is not going to help your public image."
"Fine then, if my way wasn't safe then why can't Discord go in his way? It didn't hurt anypony and didn't cause any damage."
"Yeah!" Discord said, crossing his arms. "My way had flare and comedic value."
"You didn't even enter through doors. Instead, you opened and doors went through you," Celestia said with a nauseous look on her face. “There was nothing funny about your entrance, it was just disturbing."
"Discord iz hertbrkn," he said as his color faded slightly.
"It's okay Discord, I thought it was funny," Nightmare said, patting him on the back.
Discord perked up and his colors returned. "Really, you really thought I was funny?"
"Nope," she said flatly. "In fact, I thought it was the single most disgusting and creepy thing I've ever had the misfortune of seeing." A look of honest disgust covering her face. "You split right down the center and all your little fleshy and chunky bits fell out. Then the door flew off its hinges and right between your two halves. You then proceeded to pick everything up and walked into the room like nothing had just happened."
Discord's smile quickly dissolved, along with the rest of his face.
"That's exactly what we mean!" shouted Celestia as she pointed at Discord’s now blank face. "It's just creepy." With a tap of her hoof, Discord's face returned in a golden flash. "So, what did you to need anyways?"
"Aw Celestia, such a party pooper," Discord said with a sly grin "and we're here for the same reason you are, food."
Celestia was confused. "Wait, Brass is picking food up for you guys as well?"
Discord and Nightmare nodded in unison.
"Saves us a trip if someone else is already going out," Nightmare said with a shrug. "Anyways, Discord wanted to try some real Canterlot food."
"Yeah!" Discord said, crossing his arms. "You made me stay inside the castle and eat all this hoity toity junk when you two are smuggling in finest junk food using your own guards."
As if on cue, there came a knock from the balcony door. All four of them were startled by the sudden sound. After a few seconds though, they realized what had made the sound. Outside the window stood the Pegasus guard Brass Beast. In his mouth he held four large white bags.
"Food!" shouted Luna as she dived off the bed and opened the door.
Before Brass knew what had happened he found himself pulled through the door. With a flash the bags he carried were transported from his mouth to the bed with Celestia.
"Okay then, let’s see what we have here," she said as she read the label on each of the bags. "Two Hay Bacon and egg sandwiches and two shakes for Luna and I."
"There should be one Hay Bacon and egg sandwich and a shake in there for me too," interrupted Nightmare as she walked over to the bed and retrieved her bag.
"So that leaves this bag for you Discord." She eyed the bag for a second, trying to figure out what seemed off about it. After several seconds, she realized what had seemed off about it. "Discord, did you really order a foal’s meal?"
Discord's eyes began to shift around the room. "Maaaaybe."
"You remember that talk we had less than then five minutes ago about being creepy? Ordering a foal’s meal when you're as old as us is creepy," Celestia said, taking a sip from her drink.
"It was my only choice!" he said defensively. "When Nightmare told me what I could order, I told her I wanted Hay Nuggets. She told me the only way to get them was foal’s meals."
"Fine then I guess, that’s not so creepy," Celestia said as she floated the bag over to Discord.
Brass was about to shut the door as he made his way out of the room. However, Celestia noticed his escape attempt and pulled him back into the room with her magic.
"Brass, you know you're always welcome to eat with us," she said, pointing to the small white bags on his side.
Brass let out a chuckle. "Thank you Princess, but these are for Hammer and Forge." With that, he left the room, shutting the door behind himself.
"If those were for his friends, why did he have three bags?" Luna said with a laugh.
Discord was about to dig in when he noticed the label on the bag. "Burger Queen," he read aloud.
"Celestia, why does it have your picture in the logo?" he asked, staring at the image of Celestia holding what appeared to be a Tofu Burger. "You're neither a Queen nor are you anything related to a burger," he finished, staring back up at her
Celestia let out a nervous chuckle. "Funny story you see, before Luna's return the Restaurant was called Burger Princess. The owner thought it would be good to use somepony famous to advertise their food so they used me," she finished, now staring at her own image. Boy do I look creepy, she thought to herself
"Why did they change the name?" asked Nightmare, having already finished most of her food.
Celestia chuckled once again. "Well you see, I got a little bored of being called ‘Princess’ Celestia. So I declared myself Queen of Equestria. I guess the owner changed the name to fit my new title. Sadly for him, I changed my title back after about a week. Now, no more questions, let's eat before I starve," she demanded as she ripped open the bag.
Several minutes later, the occupants of the room sat, stomachs filled and as bored as they were before. All except for Discord, who was still somewhat hungry. The Draconequus stuck his paw into the bag in hopes that maybe, just maybe a nugget had fallen out of its package. However he was surprised when his paw was met with not a nugget or empty space, but instead a solid object. He eagerly pulled it up from the depths of the bag.
"Why did nobody tell me it came with a surprise? I love surprises!" he said as his prize finally emerged from the abyss that was the foal’s meal bag.
"What is it? What is it!?" Luna shouted, overly excited, earning her a stare from everyone present. "What, I like surprises too," she muttered to herself.
"It's a game, Sneak Queen," he read aloud, staring at the case.
"What do you do in it?" asked Luna, intrigued by this new game.
Discord flipped the case over before reading the description aloud. "It says ‘The player takes control of Princess Celestia, the mascot for Burger Queen, attempting to sneak around and deliver Burger Queen meals to hungry ponies, whoever they may be.’" He laughed at the sheer absurdity of the game.
"Ha! Celestia sneaking around. Now that's something I'd love to see," Luna said, stifling another laugh.
"Surely ponies don't think I would actually do this, do they?" Celestia asked, reading over the back of the case. Where would somepony come up with this idea? she asked herself.
"Discord, I demand you let me play this game at once. I wish to see how ponies are portraying me," she ordered still staring at the case.
"Yes my Queen," The Draconequus said sarcastically. With a snap of his talons a large television and the Console he had kept hidden in his chambers appeared, landing in the center of the room.
Celestia wasn't quite sure where to begin. Sure, she and Luna had both used a T.V. before. Sometimes Luna and her would sneak out of morning or night court and watch a movie during the evenings, but video games were something completely new to her.
"So, what do I do?" she asked awkwardly, staring at the device in front of her.
With another snap of Discord’s talons everything was set. The Television screen turned on, as did the console.
"That's cheating," Celestia said as she picked up the controller and prepared herself.
As the screen began to fade in, many different logos flashed on screen, including the Burger Queen logo and the Equestrian Royal Flag. Eventually the screen was black once more except for the first the words “Press Start to Begin”.
"Press start? That should be easy," she said aloud, staring at the controller. A sudden feeling of dried filled her. None of the buttons were labeled start. Some were labeled A, B and another two were labeled with triangle and a square. Not wanting to be defeated by a foal’s toy, she decided to pick a button at random. After several seconds of careful thought she picked one of the smaller buttons near the top. Upon pressing it, Celestia was met with a satisfying ding signifying she had chosen correctly.
After several seconds of darkness the screen faded back in to what appeared to be a video of somepony’s backyard. After a few more seconds, what appeared to be Celestia climbed out of the bushes and began to creep towards the pony's house. However, after further inspection it became quite clear that what once the four had assumed to be Celestia was nothing more than a pony in a costume.
"And you said I was creepy," Discord said with a smug smile, though slightly horrified by the Celestia imposter on the screen.
The screen faded to black once again. However, it quickly faded back in, this time to a bright forest where ponies were ponies were collecting wood and replanting trees for construction in other towns.
"Hello," A voice rang out from within the T.V. "What a wonderful day, but sadly there are some hungry ponies in this Lumber mill," The voice said as the camera began to turn revealing many ponies working hard some looked quite hungry well others looked thirsty. "Luckily for these hungry ponies, you're Princess Celestia, here to bring them delicious snack food in their time of need, with flare of course." With that, the camera zoomed through the lumber mill before finally stopping over the back of the Celestia imposter.
Celestia stood in the center of the middle of the Lumber mill. She looked around, trying to get a better feeling for her surroundings. She began to creep through the fields in search of hungry ponies as the voice had suggested earlier, though as she continued her search it became quite apparent that feeding hungry ponies would be a much harder task than she originally thought
"If you're having trouble find some ponies, why not check by the water tower," the voice rang out through the air.
How helpful, Celestia thought to herself. Maybe this voice will come in handy.
Taking the voice’s advice, Celestia did her best to find the water tower. Though once again, that was easier said than done. In her search for the water tower she managed to stumble into the cutting area which seemed far more unsafe than anything she'd seen so far.
"The water tower can be found in the furthest North portion of the mill," the voice rang out once again.
Once again the voice had saved her from defeat once again. Celestia quickly sped off towards the water tower, eager to help some hungry ponies. After a matter of seconds, she found herself surrounded by ponies of all type and colors.
"Now that you have found some hungry ponies, it's time to get to work." The voice cheerfully said. "Just remember, Ponies like it more when you surprise them."
It took Celestia only a few seconds to find her first target. A large earth stallion was attempting to cut down a tree. However due to hunger it looked like he was fighting a losing a battle. Celestia knew she could help this pony. All he needed was a Hay BLT and she was just the Princess to give him it.
Celestia surveyed the area carefully. If she wanted to do this properly, she would have to sneak up on him. As everypony knows, there is no surprise if somepony sees it coming. After watching her target’s routine for several minutes she soon figured out his pattern. The stallion would attempt to cut down the tree, but after several attempts he would give up and take a rest. That was the moment she would have to strike.
The pony had once again taken up his position attempting to the defeat the same tree, Celestia used this short distraction to gain some ground, quickly diving into a bush when the stallion turned around.
That was close, she thought to herself.
The stallion stood up once again and gave his ax a few more swings before dropping it. He then trotted over to the bench and sat down, facing the forest.
This is it, Celesta told herself. Strike now or never
Celestia made her way towards the stallion as quickly and as quietly as possible. She was surprised at how agile she was. The stallion never saw her coming. She made her way up to bench without so much as snapping a twig. With a grin she tapped the stallion on the shoulder. At first Celestia was worried. Judging by the stallion’s reaction she hadn't surprised him. Instead, she only managed to scare the poor pony, though after several seconds he seemed to warm up to her. Though her handing him a hot sandwich probably helped. After giving the pony a small jig she dived back into the bush.
"Ha! I think I did great." Celestia said as a large smile spread across her face.
Discord, the only other which remained awake, was quite stunned. He wasn't sure if they should laugh or feel disturbed. He had just witnessed the most regal creature in all of Equestria sneak up on a pony in order to give him a Sandwich. Sure, it was only a video game, but in the end Celestia was the one still playing it.
"Geez, and you guys say I'm random," Discord said, staring at the screen blankly.
The sudden voice surprised Celestia. She had completely forgotten she wasn't alone in her room.
Celestia let out a nervous chuckle. "So, does anypony else want to give it a try?" she said, turning to offer the controller to anypony who wanted it.
It was only then that Celestia noticed both Nightmare and Luna had succumbed to fatigue. Luna was now sprawled across Celestia's bed snoring quite loudly. Nightmare had fallen asleep on the floor with her head resting on Discords back.
She let out another awkward chuckle. "Do you want to try?" she asked, trying to pass the controller to Discord.
He just shook his head. "I might be insane, but I'm not that insane."
"Okay then, I guess I'll help one more pony and then we'll get these two to their rooms," she finished, pointing at the sleeping Alicorns.
"Sounds like a good idea," answered Discord, already beginning to drift off.
"Good," the voice said. "You've delivered your first delicious meal and helped an innocent pony. However, now it's time to start the real work." With that the camera shifted from Celestia's back and flew through the air, eventually coming to a stop in front of a large orange stallion. "This is Mr.Trav, the captain of this camp. He's not impressed by simple surprises, so you'll have to be a little more creative."
What's so special about him? Celestia thought to herself. Surely the thought of me delivering his found should be a big enough surprise.
Once again, Celestia watched the stallion’s routine and once again she was able to formulate a plan. However this stallion wouldn't be so easy. At first he spent several minutes yelling at other ponies trying to make them work harder. Eventually though, he would return to his office and rummage through his locker for a few minutes before returning to yell at those poor ponies.
Celestia was unsure why this pony deserved free food, yet the poor ponies who he yelled at got nothing, though she would get to them tomorrow. Right now however, all she wanted to do was get this over with and go to sleep.
She prepared herself for the attack, once the stallion began his verbal assault on his coworkers, she began her creep towards his office. Once he had finished yelling and returned to his office, Celestia changed her position to greet him at the door. After what seemed like ages the Captain finally made his way back to the poor working ponies outside. Though now Celestia was in position, the moment he opened the door Celestia raised the plate holding the Sandwich in front of him. Sadly this only caused him to grow angry, shouting at Celestia and demanding she leave him and his workers alone.
"Mission Failed," came the mocking sound of the voice "Next time try hiding to truly catch you target by surprise."
Hiding? she said to herself That might just work.
Already knowing the stallion’s routine and having already made this approach before, it only took Celestia a couple of seconds to move back into position. However, instead of waiting for him at the door, she waited for him to leave his office completely. Once she was sure he was out of view, Celestia made her way into the office and towards the lockers.
"There's no way I can fit in there!" she said aloud.
"Whats the problem Celestia is you virtual flank too big?" Discord asked mockingly.
"Didn’t you go to bed or something?" Celestia answered with a glare that Discord could almost feel attempting to kill him.
Discord stood up carefully, so as not to drop Nightmare too suddenly, lest he wake the sleeping beast. "Fine, I'll go to bed. Can't be any more boring than watching you to try to get your big flank in a locker," he said with a grin
Before Celestia could send him to the moon or turn him back to stone or something equally horrible, Discord vanished with a snap of his talons, taking both Nightmare Moon and Luna with him.
"Don't worry, I'll get you later," she muttered to herself, before resuming the game.
"Okay now Celly, you can do this," she said, trying to psych herself up.
After what seemed like hours but in reality was merely seconds Celestia had managed to get herself in the locker. Though she had by no means wiggle room, it would have to suffice. She listened closely, waiting for the approaching sounds of hoofsteps. Eventually her patience was rewarded by the sound of the captain returning to his locker once again.
"Boo!" she shouted as the stallion opened the door. Once again she was worried by the pony's terrified reaction. However, this time her fears were justified as instead of his fear quickly dissolving into joy, he fainted, hitting the floor with a loud thud. Celestia quickly looked around the room. Grateful that nopony had seen what she had done, she placed the Sandwich by the pony's face before making an extremely fast exit through the nearest opening.
"Mission Accomplished, I guess," The voice cheered.
Celestia had felt pleased with herself, she helped not only one, but two ponies. Even if both of them were virtual it still made her feel good to know that she had helped them. Now though, there was only one thing that she wanted to do, sleep. She did her best to make it to her bed, but fatigue had won the war before the first battle had even begun. Celestia embraced the cold floor as she drifted off to sleep
The next morning at breakfast
"Discord, do you mind sneaking us some cereal from the pantry," asked a still groggy Luna.
Discord nodded lazily before slowly trudging his way out of the dining room. It took him several minutes but he eventually remembered where the kitchen was located. Once inside the kitchen it took surprisingly little effort to get Flambé to let him into the pantry, though Discord was too tired to question this. Discord made his way to the pantry door and began to open it. Sadly for him he was too tired to notice any signs of the trap.
"Boo!" Celestia shouted, laughing as Discord fell to the ground, a look of terror frozen on his face. Almost as if he had been turned to stone. Though, it probably had something to do with that fact that Celestia had turned him to stone.
"Don't worry, I'll come back and get you later," she said with a grin, before heading out of the kitchen, doing her best to making sure he got the best possible view of her "Big Flank."