Search all you want, but you'll never find the element of surprise on the periodic table... until it's too late.
2w, 5dI'm not leaving the writing community, I'm just going to be inactive for an indeterminate period of time. Here's why 8 comments · 145 views
5w, 1dWait, wait, wait! No one else follow me, like ever again, this number is perfect 21 comments · 206 views
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10w, 3dUpdates, Sequels, and Continuations 6 comments · 99 views
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14w, 18hWriting Rant of the Day: I Am Who The Fuck I Am. 17 comments · 139 views
15w, 6dIncredibly slow, self-concious writer seeks pre-readers/ editors. Inquire within. 18 comments · 116 views
17w, 4dBlah....g (No... moti...vation) 11 comments · 127 views
18w, 6dThis has a title now 20 comments · 203 views
In the spectator seats of the Colosseum, an ecstatic blue unicorn and an irritated earth-pony snacking on zap apple jam sat patiently waiting for the keynote address that would kick off the proceedings of this ceremony.
“Oh my goodness Markus, can you believe it? Right now, you and I are going down as accomplices of one of the greatest acts in equestrian history.”
“Ehhh... I don’t care too much; I’ve had enough excitement in my lifetime. All I care about is if I get away from that little ungrateful brat after this,” Markus explained as he quizzically looked over the jar of rainbow-colored jam and the loaf of sweet bread that never found its way to the intended recipient. It was at that moment that the cloaked pony in the center that the onlookers recognized as their beloved Mistress Solaris began her speech.
“Welcome, My Little Ponies, to the beginning of a new era!”
“YEAH! YOU ROCK MISTRESS!” Skip screamed at the top of his lungs alongside the other two thousand members of the brotherhood who inhabited the stadium, all except one, he noted. “Come on Markus, aren’t you excited for this?”
“Skip, let me tell you something: once you get to be about my age and have done the things that I’ve done, nothing surprises or excites you anymore; this is just a paycheck for me.”
“Ahhh, you’re no fun you stick in the mud.”
“Fairy...” Markus muttered under his breath as he returned his attention to the jar and bread before him.
“With the completion of tonight’s ritual, together, you and I shall ring in the beginning of a new Equestria!”
Once again the inhabitants of the Colosseum sounded off their approval with a chorus of one-thousand-nine-hundred-ninety-nine cheers. The two-thousandth was preoccupied with pouring a decent amount of zap apple jam on sweet bread.
“I’m certain you all are just as eager to get this journey to a new world underway, so without further adieu, let the harvest of two thousand souls begin!”
“YEAH! LET’S DO IT! MISTRESS SOLARIS! NEW WORLD ORD— wait, did she say ‘harvest’?”
“Ehh... saw it comin’.” Markus took a bite out of the zap apple jam-covered bread and savored the rich yet simple flavors and textures playing out across his tongue. “Okay, I take back everything I said about that filly: this is way better than my oatmeal... if we weren’t about to die, I’d love to try out a new recipe.”
“Markus did she just say what I think she did?”
“Yeah, she said we’re gonna be harvested, now would you kindly pass me some more of that jam and sweet bread? If I gotta die, I want this jam to tantalize and guide me on my way to the afterlife.”
On the center of the dais, Mistress Solaris began charging golden magic through her horn, and in a matter of seconds the power enveloped her whole body in a radiant aura that could have easily rivaled the light intensity of the sun. A moment later, she raised a hoof and drove it into the dais, sending a shockwave of magic coursing throughout the crowd of spectators. All of the ponies that came into contact with the surge of golden magic became engulfed in a ghostly blue aura. The pegasi sitting in the upper levels, took to the skies to avoid meeting the fates of their ground-based counterparts, but quickly found they were denied the promise of liberation the open sky presented due to a magical barrier. One by one, the pegasi crashed into the barrier and were sent spiraling back to the unforgiving enchanted ground below, taking their airborne brothers and sisters with them as they fell.
Five of the elements of harmony watched in horror as the population of the stadium were, one by one, encased in the blue glow that spread like wild fire. The sixth element of harmony decided to try her hoof at situational humor. “Oooohhhh! They look like giant blue birthday candles! I wonder how many wishes you’d get if you blew them out... what do you girls think?” Pinkie Pie mused aloud, eliciting a facehoof response from Rarity and Rainbow Dash.
“Ah think we need to do somethin’ about this, we cain’t just let em’ be harvested... whatever the hay that means,” Applejack replied.
“We can’t just rush down there either, Applesnack! Or else we’d end up just like them!” Rainbow Dash replied off-hoofedly while rolling her eyes.
Applejack stomped her hoof to the ground in frustration “Rrrgg... Ah know, Ah just... feel so powerless in all this. Dangit!” The farmer shouted throwing her hat to the ground in frustration.
Twilight trotted over to Applejack and placed a hoof on her friends shoulder while levitating the hat off the ground and back onto its owner’s head in a vain attempt to comfort her friend. “Applejack, I understand your frustration, but Rainbow Dash is right, we can’t just rush out there.”
“We have to do something though, Twilight!” Fluttershy squeaked.
“I know, Fluttershy, but you have to understand we don’t even know what we’re dealing with here, and— wait, something’s happening, look!” Twilight pointed a hoof at the dais, where a good number of the blue-aura covered ponies were being drawn towards the caster of the spell, as the golden shockwave retracted back to its caster.
The aura-covered ponies watched in horror as the one they had come to know as Mistress Solaris removed her hood to reveal the smirking face of none other than Princess Celestia, the very pony they believed they would be overthrowing. “Are you not proud, my loyal subjects? Through your sacrifices, together we shall resurrect and join with the most malevolent spirits in equestrian history, and then, with a power unparalleled, we shall lay claim to the Zebra Kingdom, the Gryphon Republic, the Diamond Dog Dynasty, and so on until we have conquered the entire Equis! Rejoice, my little ponies, for through the cost of two thousand souls, we revive the spirits of Nightmare Moon and Discord! It is a small price to pay for absolute order in Equestria, would you not agree?”
Luna couldn’t believe what she was hearing or who she was hearing it from. Her sister, the benevolent monarch and keeper of the sun, was planning to inflict the plague of two of the most dreaded spirits in equestria upon her own subjects. “Sister, please cease this madness, there is no need to do this, you're--”
“About to bring a coup one thousand years in the making to fruition, dearest Luna.”
“But Tia, I--”
“Enough chatter! My plan will not be delayed!” With another push of magical energy, the mass of blue ponies began swirling in a narrowing arc that slowly began to resemble a ghastly azure whirlpool as it descended towards Celestia. Mayor Mare could only watch in horror from her restraints as the former inhabitants of the Colosseum began branching off into twin streams that began pouring themselves into Luna and the statue of Discord, triggering an immediate transformation from the Princess of the night, while the statue, on the other hoof, began cracking and shattering, revealing a strange amalgamation of colors underneath. Celestia turned away from the scene before turning to one of the cloaked figures on the dais. “Betrayal, I see that five of the six agents are ready for the next stage of the ritual, but Avarice seems reluctant to accept his role. Rectify this, now.”
Zecora bowed in compliance to Celestia, before seizing a burlap sack that sat beside her as she trotted up to Spike who fought and pulled against his restraints with the little might he possessed. “No, you can't do this! I won't let you!”
“Since it is your pure greed that my master requires, I shall have to stimulate your draconian desires. It would be in absolutely terrible taste if these gifts of gemstones I were forced to waste.” Zecora reached into the sack and produced a particularly radiant and beautifully cut diamond, brandishing it before Spike, immediately captivating the dragon's attention. “I wonder what this is we have here, such a beautiful stone, so radiant and so clear? Perhaps there is more of them in this bag, the pilfered possessions of some thief's swag?” Zecora playfully waved the diamond in front of Spike's eyes, and caressed his cheeks with the stone, sending shivers of excitement through his tiny body.
“M-more g-gemstones?” The dragon's eyes darted between Zecora and the bag that lay on the ground, his forked tongue easing its way out of his mouth as it began caressing his lips in a starved fashion. "N-no!" he shouted. "I know what you're trying to do and it won't work! I'm not going to be your monster!"
"Spike," Celestia spoke sweetly to him as she stepped down from the dais. "Don't you remember all the fun we used to have."
"Ce-Celesita!?" Spike stuttered as he gazed into her motherly face. "W-why are you doing this! Please! Make her stop! I-I don't want to be a big dragon!"
"But you will be one day." Her voice was low, quiet enough to slip into the back of his young mind unknowingly. "You'll grow big, and vicious. Terrible, but strong. It's in you Spike, so why fight it?"
Spike couldn't believe what he was hearing. "Y-you're not the Princess! Celestia would never say those things! G-go away!"
"And when you do grow big your friends will leave you." She continued to speak with her beautiful voice and poisonous words. Even Zecora was mesmerized by the Celestia's millennium-long practice of words. "You'll be alone, Spike. Terribly alone with not a single treasure to keep your dragon fire warm. You'll grow cold, and die."
"No!" Spike shouted. "I'm not listening to this! I can't hear you! La la la la la!"
"Wouldn't it be better to hold on to those precious gems of friendship with all of your might? To grab and never let go of the things that are most precious to you? Spike, don't you want that?"
"W-want!?" A malicious voice was growing louder in the back of Spike's mind, telling him to do things. It was his voice. That's right. I want my friends. But one day, I'll have to let go of them, and then I’ll have nothing left. "No! Be quiet!"
"Reach out, Spike! Grab what you want. Indulge in your heart's desire. It's your right as a dragon. To deny one's self will only lead to pain, and I don't want to see you in pain, Spike."
"I'm a dragon!?" Spike felt like his mind was unraveling, devouring itself from the inside out as his natural urges of greed attempted to rip itself out of the fridges of his sanity. "I don't want to be a dragon!" he cried.
"But you are, and we can't help how we're born." She flew up and hugged Spike, getting closer to whisper directly into his ear. "Take, Spike. Grab on to those most precious gems in the world to you, and never let go. Feed your dragon's fire so you may never grow cold and die alone, bereft of everything." With a satisfied smirk, Celestia unlatched herself from Spike, who's mind had become nearly undone.
“Master, do you really think, that will be all it takes for his morals to sink?”
“Watch him, Zecora.”
“I...I...” Spike stared hungrily at the gemstones. Spike was gone, and all that was left was an incarnation of greed. "Want."
“Go ahead and speak those words very clear, tell my master what it is she waits to hear.”
“I want them...”
Zecora breathed out an exaggerated sigh before resuming her teasing. “Are you making demands in a voice so meek, or perhaps maybe I am confusing the buzzing in my ears with a rodent's squeak.”
“I said give them to me now...” The normally relaxed green ridges on the young dragon's face began tensing up in anger.
“I swear what ever that peculiar noise was, it was barely more audible than an insect’s buzz.”
“Give them to me, NOW!”
Zecora leaned in closer affixing her gaze on Spike's. “One more time and speak your true intent, allow the insatiable hunger within you to vent.”
A cruel smirk crawled across the Agent of Betrayal’s lips as she watched Spike's pupils dilate, his normally friendly and exuberant eyes narrowing into a savage serpent-like gaze. “SPIKE WANT GEMS!” he roared, signifying that his mental and moral defenses had finally fallen to Zecora's mind games. He clenched his claws into fists and pulled even more violently against his restraints. Spike felt his muscles begin to strain as he pulled, his only focus: the sack of gems. It drove his fury: he had to possess the gems, and logic was no longer a factor behind his actions as he ignored his body’s natural warning signals. The shooting pains and fresh cuts on his arms couldn't contain his resolve, and he ended up breaking through the restraints in a freak growth spurt. “SPIKE WANT!”
“SPIKE WANT!” Those words echoed through the stadium and converged on the ears of the six mares watching in horror as Twilight’s beloved assistant underwent a grotesque transformation from his cute and adorable state, to a hulking brute of a dragon before their eyes. Every pony was nervous and slightly on edge, having seen the destructive potential of Spike’s fully grown state beforehand, but Fluttershy gave a little shudder; the mare was doubly nervous given her inherent phobia of dragons.
“Oh no... Spike!” Twilight attempted to gallop out of the spectator's box, but was stopped by the joint efforts of Applejack and Rainbow Dash working in tandem to halt Twilight’s advances. “Rainbow Dash, Applejack, let me go! I have to stop him before he gets out of control again!”
“Twilight, calm down! We can't just go down there without a plan!”
“Yea Twi', don't worry, we’ll get the little fella back to his normal self, but first we need to think out our course of action.” Applejack scanned Twilight’s features and tried to return Twilight’s concern from earlier with a hoof to the shoulder. “We changed him back once, we can do it again.”
“But Spike, without me, he'll—”
This time Rainbow Dash cut Twilight off mid-sentence to inject some advice that under normal circumstances would have been ironic given the source. “Twilight, calm down and think about this.”
Twilight attempted to muscle her way through the barrier her friends posed, but quickly found that she posed very little challenge to the athletic mares who simply shoved her back. “Ugh, Why won’t you help me!?”
“Twilight we really need to—“
“There’s no time for that! Buck it, I’ll save him myself! I’m coming, Spike!” Twilight cried as her horn began to release an aura of purple magic that surrounded her body, and an instant later she vanished with a dull POMF followed by crack of blinding white light leaving behind only a trail of purple smoke, and a very confused chromatic-maned pegasus in her wake.
“Ya know, that’s the kinda thing I’d expect from you, Dash,” Applejack chuckled as she drank in the confused expression on the pegasus’ face.
“Rrgg... I can’t just let that egghead one-up me! Pinkie Pie!”
“Come on,” Rainbow Dash seized Pinkie around the waist with a foreleg “We’ve got an entrance to make!” With a flap of her wings and a giggle from Pinkie Pie, the pair exited the spectator’s box, ascending to the top of the arena.
"Well, Rarity, Shy, I guess it’s time that we make our debut as well, don’t y’all agree?”
With a sharp crack! resounding from a cloud of purple smoke, Twilight reappeared twenty-five meters away from the dais on the ground level of the Colosseum, but her sudden appearance attracted the attention of the inhabitants of the stage, namely a sour blue unicorn with a silver mane who leapt off the stage and began stomping towards Twilight. “Well, well, well, what do we have here? Trixie did not expect to see you until the sacrifice and conversion of the elements later, Twilight Sparkle. But since you’re here and have saved Trixie’s fellow agents the hassle of having to fetch you from the dungeons, Trixie supposes we can start the sacrifices early. Surely my master won’t mind,” The mare spat as her horn began glowing blue.
“Trixie...” Twilight sighed as she established the telekinetic connection to her daggers. Had it been anypony else in any other circumstances, she would have tried to utilize reason as opposed to force, but given the track record between herself and the egomaniac before her, Trixie’s humiliation and defamation during the Ursa incident, plus her arrest when she was working for Black Anarchy, Twilight knew this fight would be unavoidable.
Zecora turned away from Spike on the dais—who was presently caressing the sack of gems and digging up various rocks, placing them in a pile behind himself—to address Twilight. “From your body language, it is quite clear; that with my master’s plan, you intend to interfere. That is one thing I cannot allow, so it is your life I shall be ending now. I tire of this all of this suspense; so with no further hesitation, let the battle commence!” She bit a corner of her cloak and ripped it off her body in one swift motion, revealing a harness filled with multiple colored vials of strange bubbling liquids, and a kukiri knife similar to Detective Zaca’s own strapped to her left foreleg, hilt facing up so it could be withdrawn quickly.
Octavia reached into the violin case by her feet, and pulled out the bow as opposed to the actual instrument. Twilight noted that the bow itself had a pointed tip and the hair of the bow* had been replaced by a sharpened steel edge. “Please allow me to be the one to play your swan song, dear interloper."
“You’re all getting into arms over a lowly commoner? How boorish, I needn’t waste the edge of my blade on such garbage.” Blueblood sneered at Twilight before turning his nose to the sky. “Huh? What the—” Blueblood saw something circling the airspace at the top of the Colosseum at a ludicrous pace, but he couldn’t properly identify what it was. It had the build wing-span of a pegasus, but the body was all wrong, all equines only have four legs, but this one seemed to have eight, and it stood a whole three feet taller than a normal pony as well. Perhaps it’s a gryphon? No, no, no, that’s ludicrous, what would a gryphon be doing here... wait a minute. Blueblood squinted at the figure as it dropped a few feet in altitude, and he could make out the pink and blue coloring of the strange beast as it hovered in mid air fumbling with something. It was at this moment Blueblood’s eyes widened in horror as he realised that he was looking at a pink earth pony fiddling with a bag, riding a cyan pegasus wielding a rifle aimed at the stage. Hmmm... that’s going to be a bit of a problem, but it should be manageable, wait, what’s the other one doing? Blueblood’s attention drifted to the earth pony riding on the back of the rifle-wielding pegasus. “What the... Oh Celestia... buck me...”
Rainbow Dash found her ideal sight picture on the weapon’s iron sight, her right hoof was through the bracelet style trigger, and she wrapped her other hoof around the magazine well, holding the weapon steady as she exhaled a deep breath and prepared to draw the bracelet trigger back to herself, to provide Twilight with some cover fire from the three advancing mares who adopted the tactic of encircling their prey. Breathe in... breathe out... as rainbow Dash exhaled her held breath, she waited until there was no more air left in her lungs before she pulled the bracelet trigger towards herself slowly, aiming at the ground before Zecora, who stood behind Twilight presently.
Click. BOOM! The recoil from the rifle shook Rainbow Dash’s body, causing her to jolt slightly in the air, but nonetheless she held the weapon firm, and prepared to adjust her next shot as necessary as she observed the small cloud of dust that kicked in front of Zecora’s legs, causing the zebra to jump back slightly in surprise as Twilight whipped her daggers at Trixie and Octavia, successfully driving her attackers back, though she was still terribly outnumbered.
Rainbow Dash attempted to line up another shot, but a sudden shift of weight on the pegasus’ back completely threw off her aim causing the shot to go wild, kicking up dirt by Trixie. “Pinkie— ungh— Pie, what are you doing back there? You’re throwing off my balance and I can’t get a good shot!”
“Hehe! Oh you’ll see in a moment Dashie!” Pinkie giggled as she pulled out a long slender green tube from the bag Rarity had given her. “Oh you’ll see...” Pinkie said while pulling out a much smaller gray tube from the bag.
“What are you talking about?” Rainbow Dash recieved her response in the form of a series of loud noises and more turbulent shaking as Pinkie Pie fiddled with something behind her.
Whirr, whirr. Is she unscrewing something? What would she need to unscrew up here? Slooomp! Thump! Thump! It sounds like she just put something in a can Whirrrr, whirr. Click! Click! “Prepped, primed, and ready for action!” Oh no...
“Oh, yeah!” Pinkie shouted as she admired her freshly loaded rocket launcher before aiming at the stage below.
“Where did you even get that?! That bag couldn’t possibly hold anything that large!”
Pinkie Pie gave Rainbow Dash a vacant look for a moment as she contemplated how to answer that question. “Ummm...”
My child, you must tell her nothing... no wait... convince her we have the power of alchemy.
“Uhhh, Is that really important right now, Dashie?”
Do it now. She will have no choice but to bow before the might of equivalent exchange.
Rainbow Dash shook her head “I-I... You can’t shoot that! Think about Twilight’s safety!”
Nonsense, safety is for boys! Are you a colt? Or are you a mare?
“To hay with it, I’m a bucking mare!” Pinkie cried as she began releasing the safety devices on the launcher.
Make it rain! Make it rain!
“Wait, what, I don’t even...” Rainbow Dash sputtered as she tried to make sense of the serious nature of the present situation, as well as the rationality Pinkie’s comment, trying to find a logical connection between them. There was none.
Jed wants to see a boom! Make boom now!
“Pinkie Pie, stop!”
Those words fell on deaf ears as Pinkie Pie pulled the bracelet trigger on her launcher and set the ignition process into motion. Tssss...Thwoosh! The rocket left the tube in a plume of sparks, smoke and flame, rapidly descending towards the four mares engaged in combat below.
Trixie heard the rocket before she saw it, and the sight of fire and smoke spiraling downwards caused her to freeze in place. A thousand thoughts ran through her head all at once, but none of them were along the lines of “gallop to safety”, “teleport away”, “blast the rocket out of the air” or “duck that incoming double leg buck approaching your face at great speeds.” The former showmare simply stood slack-jawed observing the instrument of her untimely passing as a pair of violet hindlegs connected with her lower jaw, sending Trixie sailing through the air before impacting hard on the ground well out of the rocket’s explosive radius.
When Trixie’s vision caught back up with her, she was treated to the sight of Zecora and Octavia falling to either side of her, a purple aura of magic surrounding them both, and watched as Twilight Sparkle, the very mare Trixie had sworn vengeance upon, was caught in the epicenter of the explosion when the rocket detonated, enveloping herself in a cloud of dust and smoke. No magic shield, no teleportation spell, no cover to hide behind, nothing. Twilight took the full brunt of that explosion. Trixie had fantasized about this moment a thousand times before, but something about this whole event soured her victory. Perhaps it was the fact that she didn’t get to end Twilight with her own hooves, or that she had fallen prey to the early stages of antagonist in mourning syndrome*, or that Twilight had risked her own life to spare her enemies. Trixie didn’t know or care, watching the death of her rival left her hollow on the inside.
Rainbow Dash descended slowly to the spectator seats below with her mouth agape, still trying to process what had just transpired, “You... you just... killed Twilight...”
“Huh?” Pinkie asked quizzically, as she dismounted Rainbow Dash.
“You just shot Twilight... our friend... our sister in arms... with one of your stupid rockets... and she didn’t even try to run...” Rainbow Dash sank to her haunches, staring vacantly at the cloud of dust where her friend one stood.
“Ummm... Dashie, I—”
No, no, no my disciple, don’t say anything yet, Jed wishes to laugh at the mutant bird-horse.
“I’ve told you a thousand times not use your stupid bombs! Now look what you’ve done, you idiot!” The enraged pegasus seized Pinkie Pie by the vest, and raised a hoof in anger threatening to bring it down and across the face of her fellow agent. Pinkie Pie on the other hoof had trouble suppressing a massive grin from dominating her face, but unsurprisingly she failed to keep it in check and inevitably broke into a fit of laughter, causing more confusion and rage to flow through Rainbow Dash. “How can you just laugh at the death of our friend? Are... are you a traitor? This whole time... you’ve been a spy haven’t you?!”
“Hehehe! No, Dashie, look again silly!” Pinkie Pie pointed a hoof at the place where the rocket had taken out Twilight, and Rainbow Dash’s eyes shot open as she glanced over to what should have been a smoking crater with a single charred corpse sitting within its bowels. Instead, she saw a lone silhouette standing in the lingering remains of the smoke cloud. “
“B-b-bu-but, y-y-you sh-shot a r-r-rocket—”
“A smoke and confetti rocket.”
“What, did you think I was going to shoot a live round at my best friend? Jeez, gimme some credit, silly Dashie.”
“A confetti and smoke rocket?”
“What was the point of that?”
“Rarity said something about wanting to make some dramatic, fancy-schamancy entrance when she steps on the battlefield. Something about going into combat with style.”
Rainbow Dash, for the second time in ten minutes, facehoofed. What I put it up with between these two...
Twilight was planning out her next course of action against the three advancing mares when she saw the missile launch. She had a good seven to eight seconds to react or escape from it, but given the source of the rocket was Pinkie Pie, she figured there must have been something more to it, and instead decided to put distance herself from her attacker starting with Trixie. Twilight galloped up to her rival, who was absent-mindedly staring off into space, and spun her body in a circle, drawing her hindlegs in and released them with explosive force that caught Trixie in the jaw and sent the Agent of Curse sprawling to the ground several meters away.
Twilight allowed magic to surge through her horn as she recovered from her bucking stance, redirecting the energy into a concussive blast that slammed into the pair like a brick wall sending them flying in the same direction as Trixie.
Satisfied that she had generated some distance between herself and her attackers, Twilight hit ground, covered the back of her head with her forelegs and clenched her eyes, preparing for the sting of fire and shrapnel accompanied by the deafening as the rocket crashed a meter in front of her and exploded in a rain of confetti, streamers, and white smoke.
“I apologize for the theatrics but the heroine must always make her entrance in style,” called a new voice from inside the fading smoke. Twilight picked herself off the ground and turned her attention to the newcomer to find the voice’s owner was none other than Rarity accompanied by nopony. “I hope you don’t mind if I lend a helping hoof, do you? I still have a bit of grudge match to resolve with that one.” The fashionista explained, gesturing to Octavia.
“Where are Fluttershy and Applejack?”
“Oh we sent Fluttershy to—”
“GYAAAHHHH! A DRAGON, MAKE IT GO AWAY!” Fluttershy’s screams could be heard from the other side of the stadium as Twilight observed the frightened pegasus galloping circles around the embodiment of greed that was Spike.
“Well, that makes sense I guess, but why doesn’t she just fly?”
Rarity shrugged to convey her cluelessness on the matter.
“Well, where’s Applejack?”
A sharp crack! sound from behind conveyed a different story, however as Prince Blueblood winked in behind Twilight and Rarity, his sword floating by his side ready to be swung at any time. “Terribly sorry to disappoint you both, ladies, but I’m afraid that it’s just me.”
“Blueblood...” Rarity sighed as she felt the presence of a blade behind her neck. “As much as I hate you, I think I’ll let Applejack handle you for now. After the way you treated me at the gala, if I were to handle you myself, we would have to jack up the age rating of this story.”
“I don’t know what you’re talking about but it won’t matter in a few— Gaccck!” A rope had caught Blueblood around his throat, tightened up, and began dragging him away from Twilight and Rarity.
“Whoa there, Blueblood, I don’t think Twi’ an Rarity are the type of mares that take it from behind on the first date, but if you’re lookin’ for somepony to get physical with, I think I can oblige you.”
“I’ll make you pay for that, peasant,” Blueblood spat as he commanded the sword to cut through the rope around his neck. Rubbing the spot where the rope had left a mark, Blueblood readjusted the sword so that the tip was facing Applejack. “En Garde!”
“Bring it on!” Applejack cried as she galloped towards Blue Blood. The unicorn prince readied his saber for a mighty slash that missed its target by a wide margin as Applejack spun and ducked beneath the attack, releasing her hind legs in powerful buck towards the prince’s forelegs and she connected, the cleated horseshoes she wore leaving a nasty spike pattern on his left leg. Blueblood barely registered the hit. “Augh! You’ve mussed up my freshly groomed coat with filth from your unwashed hooves. How dare you!?”
Applejack couldn’t comprehend the prince’s reaction to her attack. She’d poured years upon years of practice and perfection into that buck, knocked out numerous bullies, mobsters, and all-around jerks with it, and yet the one Pony she’d assumed to be the biggest pushover in all of Canterlot, hay, all of Equestria simply took it the full brunt of it and chastised her on the premise that it might have stained his fur. It didn’t make sense, and neither did what he did next.
Blueblood’s horn charged with an aura the color of which was reminiscent of his hazel eyes, and with his freshly readied magic, he began picking the dirt off of his foreleg. “I say, don’t you commoners know how to duel properly? Royalty should never dirty their own hooves even when it come to minor disputes such as this.”
“Yeah? Well I ain’t no royalty! I’m a work horse, and I intend to show ya how the Apple Family has handled scum like you for years!”
“Heh, I look forward to impaling you and celebrating with a glass of port, or perhaps a glass of starboard.” Blueblooded joked snidely as he whipped the blade in a methodical fashion at Applejack, who hesitated to rush into the flurry even though it was her best shot of overwhelming him. He wouldn’t expect the rush, but on the off-chance that he recovered quickly enough... Applejack didn’t want to think about it. Instead, she chose to stomp her left foreleg into the dirt, and kicked it up releasing a cloud of dirt, dust and various other small rocks into Blueblood’s face. "Gaahh! You filthy pig-wrangler!” the prince backpedaled blindly, swinging his sword wildly, and Applejack took advantage if his current state to dash straight through the wide openings his sword left. With this approach, she dashed and jumped Blueblood from the side angle, bringing all four of her hooves together in a magnificent flying drop kick that connected with the prince’s chest dropping him to the ground, and breaking the connection to his sword
Prince Blueblood pulled himself up, searching around for his sword. "That's the last shot you're getting in, commoner." He reestablished the connection with his sword and sent it flying at Applejack. He smirked as he watched the mare frantically trying to dodge the flying blade, but every time she ducked a blow he would send it right back at her. "You'd make a magnificent fool in the royal court. In fact, I'll make that your place in life once the world is mine."
"Don't you mean Celestia's?" Applejack grumbled.
"Oh come now, I'm the Agent of Deceit for a reason," Blue Blood laughed. "Don't expect anything less from me."
"I don't expect anything more!" Applejack yelled as she jumped and grabbed the blade with her teeth. She landed on the ground and, with Blue Blood still dazed from the spectacle, pulled it out of his magical grasp and flung it as far as she could away. "Let's see how you do with your hooves, big boy!" Applejack galloped up to Blueblood, turning just a few feet before him to give him the strongest buck she could muster. It felt like bucking concrete. "Dangit!"
"So, this is what happens when an unstoppable force meets an immovable object," he laughed as he surrounded Applejack in his magical aura. "Do enjoy the view." He threw her up, laughing madly as he watched Applejack soar into the air.
Applejack struggled against her momentum. "Just hold on, A.J. You've been in worse!" She grabbed her hat as she felt her body reaching the apex of her path. "You want to see an unstoppable force, sugarcube! Then here I come!" Applejack abandoned logic and aimed for Blue Blood, aiming her hooves downward and preparing for the biggest buck no one in Equestria will ever see. "Hey, Blueblood!"
"What!" Blueblood looked up, and could not believe what he saw, or felt. Applejack landed right on top of of him, her back hooves driving themselves into his back, and he felt himself wince. His knees were forced to bend under so much force. "You insolent little-"
"Not hearing it, darlin'!" Applejack howled as she jumped on Blueblood and delivered a swift roundhouse directly to his still stunned face. "This date is over!" She delivered another kick to his face before sliding behind him and grabbing his tail. She gave it a hard tug. Yep, just like Big Mac! She tugged harder, gritting her teeth as she began to lift Blueblood off his hooves and spin him around in the air. "ARRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRGGGGGGGGGGGGGHHHHHHH!" She threw him into the air, and jumped up after him. She grabbed him again, and rode him back to the ground. "Giddiup, Blueblood!"
"AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!" Blueblood screamed before hitting the ground, face first.
“Alright Pinkie Pie, let’s get down there and lend Twilight a hoof or two, shall we—”
“GYAAAAAAHHHH A DRAGON MAKE IT GO AWAY!” Fluttershy cried as she zipped past the pair, giant Spike in tow.
“We’re going to have to help Fluttershy with that aren’t we?” Rainbow grumbled rhetorically.
“SPIKE WANT YELLOW BIRD! GRAAGGH!”
Pinkie grinned and nodded enthusiastically to Rainbow Dash, who sighed disappointingly before perking up again. “Well, I guess this means that I get to put 'nother notch in my belt of accomplishments. Rainbow Dash: Fastest Flier in Equestria, Most Decorated EIB agent, and now Dragon Slayer. Yeah, that sounds awesome, let’s do this! Pinkie Pie, do you think you can provide support for me?”
“You got it, boss!” Pinkie Pie grinned as she reached into her bag of bombs, fishing out a small metallic green plate, and a long tube with what looked like a pair of legs sticking out of one side of it. As she sat on her haunches and began assembling the pieces, Rainbow Dash slid the hoof pistol out of its pouch on her vest, and slipped over her right hoof before she took flight to engage and distract the giant Spike that was currently harassing Fluttershy.
“Hey, scaly!” Rainbow Dash yelled as she closed the distance between herself and Spike.
The giant Spike turned his head towards the source of the shout.
“Suck on this, dragon boy!” Rainbow Dash began a strafing flight pattern as she peppered Spike with every bullet in the pistol’s capacity.
The rounds impacted on Spike’s hardened scale with little effect, the rounds sparking and shattering as they connected and fell harmlessly to the ground below. Spike reacted by scratching the spot where he'd been shot, and scooping up the tiny bullets placing them in his sack and grinning, before he resumed trying to recapture Fluttershy. Note to self, get HQ to make anti-dragon bullets. Rainbow Dash thought as she removed the pistol and inserted a fresh ring clip into the back before re-equipping it. Well, that failed, I wonder else I can do—
“PARTY CANNON 2.0 IS READY TO FIRE!” Pinkie shouted as she held a mortar round over the tube ”THIS NEXT ROUND IS DANGER CLOSE! ALL FRIENDLIES PLEASE EVACUATE THE GIANT DRAGON... errr... THE AREA AROUND THE GIANT DRAGON! EVACUATING THE DRAGON WOULD BE GROSS AND WEIRD, WOULDN’T IT? I MEAN WOULDN’T HE HAVE TO EAT YOU TO EVACUATE YOU? AND THEN WHICH END ARE YOU BEING EVA—”
“Pinkie Pie, shut up and shoot it!” Rainbow Dash ordered.
“OKIE DOKI LOKI, BOSS! ” Pinkie Pie held the first mortar round above the launcher and dropped it in. The round ejected from the tube a moment later with a loud THOOONK, and began hurtling up through the stadium’s skylight, unhindered now that the barrier had disappeared. Pinkie followed up this singular round, by stuffing munition after munition into the tube, each one launching out with a loud THOOONK!
Rainbow Dash crossed her forelegs expectantly as she watched Spike anticipating the sound of successive round drop, but after a few moments passed, nothing happened, and Spike continued chasing after Fluttershy to his heart’s content “…Was that it?” Rainbw Dash inquired bemusedly as she waited for the round to drop.
“Give it a minute, Dashie!”
More silence ensued and nothing happened. Not even the fizzle of a dud landing could be heard, the rounds were just straight up gone.
“Well, what happened to the rounds Agent Pie?”
“Hmmm...maybe I calibrated the gun wrong... I wonder where all those rounds went”
In Canterlot Market
A blue unicorn who ran a simple fruit stand business was in the middle of what was potentially the biggest sale of his entire life: some pony actually wanted to purchase all of his wares for the next two weeks, plus his stand, for an absurd amount of money that he would be able to retire on. The unicorn couldn’t believe his luck, this was the greatest day of his entire life, and nothing could strip away the happiness he felt at this moment. Not divorce lawyers, not the dentist, not even those pesky tax collectors. He’d be able to move far away to some exotic place like Hawai’i Neigh*, and all he had to do was finish filling out this form.
At that moment however, a rather loud whistling sound broke through the silence of the market place, approaching at a pace that was steadily increasing in volume. The unicorn thought nothing of it as he continued signing the contract, but nothing could have been more disheartening than the sound of an explosion ripping through his fruit, setting all of his wares ablaze and splintering the wood in every direction, covering passers-by with bits of watermelon and wood chunks.
The business ponies before him looked at each other, and back to the unicorn before seizing the contract and trotting away, leaving behind a broken and now-unemployed husk of a stallion.
“Well, that was a waste of time,” Pinkie Pie sighed as she dug through her bag for another rocket launcher, that she shouldered and aimed at Spike who was still in pursuit of Fluttershy and was now stomping towards Pinkie Pie and Rainbow Dash. Pinkie released all of the safety devices on the launcher, and slammed back the ring trigger, releasing the rocket in a plume of smoke, and a shower of sparks.
The projectile flew straight into Spike’s chin, impacting with the force of an a uppercut, whipping the dragon’s head backwards. No massive damage had been done, but the blast certainly slowed him down enough to allow Fluttershy to escape, landing exhaustedly next to Pinkie Pie.
My Disciple, a most excellent prospect has crossed the mind of Jed: The yellow one...Giddiyup!
When Spike recovered, he picked up the shell that had once been a rocket and placed it into his sack as well.
Rainbow Dash took this opportunity to direct Spike’s attention to herself by unloading another salvo of bullets into his skin as she circled around his his head. Spike reacted by picking up the fallen shell casings and scratching the places where he’d been shot. “Ugh! This is getting me nowhere! There has to be some way to take you down!” Rainbow grunted in frustration as she flew around Spike in circle, careful to avoid his claws with each pass she made. She was so busy trying to find a chink in Spike’s scaling that she didn’t hear Pinkie Pie shouting frantically to avoid an incoming rocket. The projectile itself missed Rainbow Dash completely, but the ensuing concussive force against Spike’s scales blasted the pegasus out of the sky, a result of her flying too close to the rocket’s blast radius.
She hit the ground hard, landing on her back. I’ve taken worse falls in flight practice, this is nothing. As Rainbow Dash sat up unsteadily she felt something slip out of one of the vest pockets, and heard glass clatter along the ground next to her flank. “What’s that?” Rainbow’s eyes fell on the small orb by her hindlegs, taking note on what was inside of it. Is that a storm cloud? She picked up the ball that was about the size of one of Pinkie’s usual flash-bang grenades, and it occurred to her that there might just be a way to beat this dragon after all. Rainbow fished through her vest pockets and pulled out the remaining storm cloud jars, and she found them no sooner than spike had caught sight of her handling the glowing orbs.
“SPIKE WANT GEMS! SPIKE WANT BLUE BIRD!”
Oh, this is perfect, Rainbow thought to herself as she checked the amount of bullets in her hoof pistol’s magazine. Much to her chagrin, she found only one round glistening in the chamber, but if she was diligent enough, one bullet would be all she’d need. Rainbow tossed the glass cases in a scattered pattern in front of Spike before becoming airborne again, and much like she anticipated, he eased his advance and began picking them up, collecting them in his palm, five in all.
I knew he’d fall for it. She thought as she aimed her pistol at his palm. Steady Dash, you’ve only got one shot at this. Rainbow Dash tensed her hoof, exhaled her breath, and fired her weapon like a true marksmare, but the round went wild and ricocheted off of the glass casing without leaving so much as a crack.
Motherbuck, motherbuck, motherbuck, motherbuck, moth— wait, is that Pinkie and Fluttershy?
Pinkie had once again found herself a flying steed. Fluttershy didn’t exactly make for the smoothest ride, but she’d get the job done in a pinch.
“Alrighty Fluttershy, are you ready to be a hero?” Pinkie Pie inquired as she dug through her bag, fishing out several green-shelled fragmentation grenades.
“Well, actually I—”
“That’s the spirit girlfriend! Let’s do this!” Pinkie shouted as she grabbed Fluttershy’s mane with her free hoof, causing the pegasus to lose her sense of direction, altering her flight path straight towards spike. “Wheeeeeee!” Pinkie squealed with joy as she and Fluttershy hurtled towards Spike at alarmingly fast speeds.
“P-P-Pinkie? Can we pull up now?! Please!?” Fluttershy pleaded.
“Ugghhh... fine.” Pinkie rolled her eyes as she pulled Fluttershy’s mane back further and the pegasus leveled out into a flight path eighty meters from the ground. “This is my stop, anyhow.”
“Your stop? What do you—Pinkie, no!” Fluttershy’s words were a day late and a bit short as Pinkie leapt from Fluttershy’s back, cradling the fragmentation grenades in her forelegs and biting out the pins as she fell.
“Today’s forecast is cloudy with a chance of steel rain, baby!” Pinkie cackled as she threw all of the fragementation grenades straight down at Spike, all of the rounds detonating as they made contact with his skin, releasing five simultaneous explosions that scattered shards of metal everywhere. The shrapnel bounced harmlessly off of Spike’s body, but a few choice fragments pierced the jars containing the storm clouds, allowing the swarm of cumulonimbus clouds to join together in one massive cloud resonating with sparks of lightning that nipped at Spike’s skin.
In his primal state Spike, couldn’t understand what was going on, and reacted to the sudden appearance of the massive cloud by swatting at it, his claws passing harmlessly through the black, ionically-charged substance.
Well, that worked out in my favor; I’ve got to act fast though, or else Pinkie’s going to get real friendly with the ground. Rainbow Dash was already moving like a bullet towards the storm cloud with her forehooves extended in front of her, and she slammed into the cloud, her forward momentum generating a massive amount of energy that traveled around the cloud, erupting in a massive bolt of lightning that broke through the iron defense of Spie’s scales, and coursed through his body, first stunning him before invoking a fit of muscle spasms, and finally toppling him over flat on his belly. Satisfied with her progress, Rainbow changed direction and sped to catch Pinie Pie moments before the hyperactive mare became one with the ground below.
“Wow, thanks Dashie, that was really cool! I mean I was flying, there were the grenades, you were kicking lightning, and Spike is getting back up, hay there was even a cola missile!”
“Wait, what was that last part?”
“You mean the soda missile I didn’t get to shoot yet?”
“No, I meant—”
“That’s just what I was afraid of...”
“So how are we going to deal with him, Dash?”
Well, first you’re going to get off.” Rainbow Dash ceased her momentum by skimming the ground with her legs outstretched and skidded to a halt, the sudden change in velocity causing Pinkie Pie to fly off the pegasus’ back, head over hooves.
“Owww! What did you do that for Rainbow Dash?”
“I’ve got a plan and not a lot of time to put it into action, so forgive me for being rough, alright?”
Pinkie crossed her forelegs and blew a tuft of hair out of her face before finally spitting out the word, “Fine,” as Fluttershy glided down to the party pony’s aid and began dressing the fresh cuts that resulted from Rainbow’s gruff ejection.
Spike had been able to stand against bullets and several explosives assaults, but that singular lightning bolt inflicted so much damage upon his being that it rendered him unable to move momentarily. Still, he was recovering at an alarmingly fast rate, and Rainbow Dash needed to at quickly, so she took off towards the opening in the Colosseum’s roof at maximum speed, pulling out a pair of goggles from her vest as well as her hoof-pistol, adorning them as she ascended. She could feel the mach cone taking shape around her as she pushed her wings to their limits, ascending higher and higher. There was a strong difference between performing a sonic rainbow with gravity assistance, and doing it by sheer skill, and seeing as she hadn’t mastered the latter just yet, she was going to settle for another ricochet-assisted Rainboom at this moment. The mach cone was straining and stretching throughout her struggling, and she felt the moment where it held taut and would yield no further, threatening to hurl her back towards the ground from whence she came, and she was counting on it.
The mach cone finally ceased and began retracting quickly, it’s occupant changing her direction and tucking her wings to get the maximum boost of speed as she could possibly manage out of the ordeal. As she was sling-shotted back towards the stadium, Rainbow Dash opened her wings and began flapping furiously, the second mach-cone materializing twice as quickly as its predeessor. Come on push, push, push! She was still a good distance from the stadium, but she wanted to initiate the Rainboom as quickly as possible before stage two of her plan. The mach-cone stretched and resisted her downward velocity, eventually crackling with electricity and finally exploding with an explosion of color that rocked the the very airspace above the Colosseum, and doubled the speed of Rainbow Dash’s descent, leaving a multi-chromatic trail in her wake.
Well, that was easy, time for phase two! The pegasus retracted her wings and curled her hindlegs to her chest securing them in place with her forelegs, and she began to rotate during her descent performing many front tuck style somersaults as she breached the Colosseum’s skylight, targeting Spike’s head. Just one more step Rainbow thought as she breached the lighting cloud at improbable speeds, her impact generating a burst of lightning that followed the metal composition of her pistol, although at her current speed she was winning. Heh, I’m racing with lightning, how about that?
Rainbow Dash finally spotted Spike again through her dizzying rush to her target, and when she felt that she was ten meters away, she released her forelegs, straightened her body and slammed both of her forelegs into Spike’s head, breaking the hoof-pistol attached to her right hoof as she did so. The sacrifice of her pistol was not in vain however as the high-speed assault slammed Spike’s head back into the spectator seating below, as the bolt of lightning that was chasing her embedded itself into Spike’s body having lost the trail of its original conductor. Spike shook, jerked, and flailed about as he absorbed every watt of the attack, eventually passing out due to the amount of voltage his body was taking, but it wouldn’t kill him, due to his massive size.
Rainbow Dash, exhausted from the expenditure of so much energy, dragged her hooves lazily while weakly calling out to the only pony who could fix her situation. “Flutter.... Fluttershy...”
The yellow pegasus wasted no time as she galloped over to her exhausted friend.“Yes Rainbow Dash? What do you need?”
“You still got any sedatives?”
“All of them, why?”
“Put dragon boy there to sleep, we can’t change him back without Rarity, but we can’t have him stomping around everywhere while we’re trying to stop that over there,” Rainbow Dash explained as she gestured to the dais where a good chunk of the blue souls had been absorbed into Luna and Discord’s statue.
Fluttershy nodded and began sifting through her vest, pulling out many vials of clear liquid, and began pouring them into a comically large syringe that was about the size of her whole leg. She trotted up to the sleeping giant spike, and stuck the syringe into his neck, the stress on the dragon’s face easing away as he drifted into a deeper level of sleep, oblivious to the events around him any longer.
“Any ideas, Rarity?” Twilight inquired as her eyes darted between the three mares before them. They were outnumbered, but there still had to have been some silver lining.
“GYYYYAHHHHH” Luna’s cry from the dais reminded Twilight that she was working on a frantic timeline, as she took note that as least a third of the blue ponies from before had been absorbed into Princess Luna and Discord’s statue.
“Just one, Twilight.” Rarity’s horn glowed blue as she reached into her pocket dimension and withdrew ten of the gems she liberated from Vinyl’s vault earlier. She levitated the gems together in pairs, and with another push of her magic she began adhering them to each other, each gem releasing a brilliant white light as they were broken down and reconstructed into meter-long blades that floated around Rarity like satellites.
“Have at you, ruffians!” Rarity cried, as she began galloping towards the three mares, swinging the blades around recklessly as she went, her aim was not to injure them but more so to split them up so Twilight could fight one-on-one with whoever straggled the furthest. Her plan was going swimmingly until Zecora dashed a red vial to the ground, creating an explosion that blew Rarity off her feet, sending her skidding across the ground, her blades still in tow. When Rarity finally stopped, she picked herself off the ground only to find that Trixie and Zecora began assaulting Twilight in tandem. “Oh no.” She galloped over to join the fray, but stopped her movements as a new blade cut the air in front of her face. She traced the length of the weapon back to its owner, only to find Octavia standing before her in a two legged fencing stance, the bladed violin bow strapped to the musician’s right foreleg. Most ponies would be intimidated at the sight of a pony who could hold their balance and a weapon so well in this position. Rarity, unlike other ponies, chuckled. “Oh, it’s you again? Are you going run away this time as well?”
Octavia frowned. “I’m afraid not, we still have some unfinished business from our little concerto earlier,” Octavia explained as she thrust her weaponized bow at Rarity, who deflected each blow with her free-floating gem blades.
“You’ll have to do better than that,” Rarity chuckled as she batted away a wild slash from Octavia’s bow, the unicorn retaliated by swinging two of the blades inwards like giant pair of scissors. Octavia reacted by charging straight through the attack “Your attacks have no style, no flair, they’re just all over the place and an absolute eyesore.” Rarity chortled as she parried another blow and slashed diagonally at Octavia’s head, to which the musician reacted by ducking.
“Do you ever shut up?” Octavia spat as she recovered with an upwards moving cut that Rarity wasn’t prepared to parry with any of her blades, and the swing grazed fashionista’s cheek leaving a cut in its wake.
Rarity jumped back and rubbed a hoof where the blade connected, and held it out before herself so she could observe it. “I want you to know, I’ll never forgive you if this stains my fur.”
“There’s no need to be flashy as long as you can be effective, wouldn’t you agree?” Octavia sneered, relishing the sight of her opponent’s blood on her blade.
“Oh, I think fashion and practicality serve equally important purposes, but to display both in the same gambit is the sign of a master seamstress. Allow me to demonstrate.” Rarity’s horn glowed an even brighter shade of blue as several blue figures materialized from the medium, taking on Rarity’s form as the glow dissipated. Each figure, five in all, bore Rarity’s likeness complete with vests, gem swords, and freshly induced scar, and stood on line with the original preparing to charge Octavia.
Rarity cantered towards Octavia, her copies following suit before they split up and ran in a zig zag pattern. Octavia took notice and delivered a devastating thrust that pierced the closest Rarity. “Well, I suppose that’s one way to a mare’s heart,” the copy chuckled and much to Octavia’s chagrin and confusion, the Rarity illusion slipped through her blade and through Octavia’s body causing to the musician to shiver slightly.
Two more of the Raritys jumped into the fray and began swinging their blades at Octavia, who attempted to parry the phantom blades but found she was only connecting with air, until a Clang! sound reverberated off of her own blade, alerting the musician to the presence of the real Rarity. Octavia searched around and noticed one of the copies stood behind the rest, and that this copy only had two swords floating behind them. The musician arrived at the conclusion that this one had to be the original, and reacted by placing her bow in her mouth and charging through the clones on all fours, her focus squarely on the Rarity all the way in the back. As Octavia neared her target, she whipped her head to the side and swung it back in Rarity’s direction, the blade making contact, taking off the head of another illusion. “What? But I was so certain this one was the real one!”
“Oh now why did you have to go and assume that?”
Octavia whipped her head around searching for the source of the voice, and it was at this instance that she noticed illusions behind her had vanished.
“You know that when you assume things you only make an ‘ass’ out of ‘you’ and ‘me’ darling,” the voice chided again.
“Show yourself, coward!”
“Well, since you insist... here I am!” Rarity called as she materialzed in a flash of blue light.
Octavia dashed and leapt at the freshly materialized Rarity, bringing down her bow with all of her might using both hooves. As the bow made contact, the wood holding it together splintered, cracked, and broke, dispelling the illusion as it did so leaving behind a massive statue of gems in the shape of a pony, but no sign of Rarity. Octavia, now unarmed, confused and frantic, backpedaled away from the statue, unaware of her target’s whereabouts until she backed into something. Octavia didn’t have anytime to react as something jumped on her back and wrapped a tight cord around her neck, restricting her airway and making it progressively more difficult to breathe or think straight. Octavia fumbled at the thread around her neck as it closed in tighter and tighter, but ponies, unlike griffins or dragons, lack any form of digit that would prove practical for gripping such surfaces and as a result her hooves slid harmlessly over the tiny thread as her breathing became shallower and shallower.
“Shhh... shhhh... just let it happen,” Rarity cooed as she tightened her garrote around Octavia’s neck, her chameleon-skin illusion spell dissolving into the air around her, making the ivory unicorn visible once again. Octavia made a series of gurgling noises before the lack of oxygen to her brain forced her world to fade to black. Rarity had the good sense to release the garrote from around the unconscious mare’s throat before life’s greatest minor inconvenience: death could set in. steady position,“This duet is over.”
“I can’t just leave her on the ground like this though...” Rarity looked around what was formerly her stage of battle and her eyes fell on the gem statue that still retained its faint blue and yellow coloring, indicating the gems still had some magical properties left. “I-de-a!” she chirped as she extended her aura of magic towards the lump of precious sediments, levitating it over Octavia. With another push of magic, the lump changed form again, this time resembling a finely crafted azure cage adorned by ruby roses attached to emerald vines that wrapped themselves around the bars in an intricate fashion. Releasing her magic from around the cage, she allowed the open end to fall over Octavia, so that even had the musician woken up, she wouldn’t be able to interfere any further. Rarity was admiring her work on the statue when a bolt of lightning zipped past her head, burrowing itself into the spectator seating of the Colosseum, leaving a crater and plume of dust in its wake. Rarity whipped her head to the side to address the source of the explosion to see Twilight going hoof to hoof to hoof and holding her own against Trixie and Zecora.
Twilight bobbed and wove her way through the salvo of fireworks shots Trixie released from her horn, making it difficult for the lavender unicorn to get in close where she knew she would have the edge. Twilight ducked under a particularly large ball of light and began galloping at the opening Trixie left in her defenses, earning a snide remark from the show-mare. “Trixie is impressed you managed to avoid that, Twilight Sparkle, but perhaps it is time to prove who is the stronger between us!” Trixie’s horn produced an even greater light intensity, and lightning began to resonate from the medium in an arcing burst. Twilight skidded to a halt, and summoned a purple barrier of energy that deflected the incoming blast upwards.
From within the safety of her force field, Twilight focused on a spot behind Trixie, and with a pomf of smoke, she winked behind her rival who was preparing to fire another volley of light projectiles. Levitating a dagger to the back of Trixie’s neck, Twilight sought to disarm the situation without any further fighting. “Hold it right there,Trixie. You’re under arrest by the Order of the RCIA, and if you can’t tell by the position you’re in: resistance is futile. Now, you can give up peacefully or— oof!” Two pairs of striped legs crashed into Twilight’s side, knocking the unicorn away from the Agent of Curse.
“Why don’t you give up while you are ahead? If you continue to struggle you will only end up dead!” Zecora shouted, tossing two blue liquid-filled vials at the still-fallen Twilight, who summoned a block of purple energy before herself to halt the advance of the vials that impacted with a burst of blue flames, scorching the transparent purple surface. Twilight galloped up to the still burning block and shoved it with the tip of her horn, sending the projectile hurtling towards the cackling zebra, who side-stepped the attack, drew a kukiri knife with her teeth and charged straight in towards Twilight, whipping her head to the side and unleashing a devastating swing, that Twilight parried clumsily with one of her free-floating daggers, as she slashed in wide arcs with the other hoping to drive Zecora away, but to no avail.
“Ha, I can tell that there is much combat experience you lack, for only an amateur would attempt an assault with such poorly executed attacks!” Zecora jumped back a meter as Twilight released another wide swing of her daggers, and just as the zebra did so, a bolt of lightning cut through the space between herself and Twilight.
“Ungh!” Twilight shielded her eyes from the bright flash as it exploded before her eyes, thus failing to notice the two red bottles that flew towards her feet and exploded, embedding glass shrapnel into Twilight’s skin, while simultaneously blowing her back a good distance.
“Perhaps you thought that lightning flash was simply random, but this is the power of my partner and I working in tandem.” Zecora spat as she began to charge her fallen target again.
Twilight picked herself off the ground, wincing in pain as the glass in her leg reacted to the sudden change in weight, the glass digging itself even deeper into her leg, but there was no time to pay that any attention at this moment: the fate of Equestria was riding on Twilight’s withers. “I guess there’s no way around it then,” Twilight mumbled, ducking underneath Zecora’s most recent charge, and winking in front of Trixie, who was preparing to release another bolt of lightning support.
“Gah!” Trixie was taken off guard by Twilight’s sudden reappearance and fired off the lightning burst in a panic, Twilight reacting by leaping to the side while thrusting one of the daggers into the meat of Trixie’s hind-leg, eliciting a shriek of pain.
Twilight heard the sound of rapidly approaching hoofsteps, and prepared to meet Zecora’s most recent assault with a new approach to this whole double-team combat issue.
Zecora leapt into the air a good distance, readying her next strike, but Twilight winked again, her preplanned destination the airspace directly above Zecora. When Twilight reappeared, she drove her hooves down towards Zecora with all of her might, giving her a stable foothold on her rival’s back, while she jammed her remaining dagger into the zebra’s flank. Twilight essentially rode Zecora back to the ground, the unicorn’s extra weight causing a dull crack as the pair hit the hard ground below next to Trixie, but Twilight wasn’t done quite yet, she needed to ensure they were down. With the last of her available magic energy, she overcharged her horn, her eyes glowing and radiating with a blinding white light, and in an instant she surrounded her body and the surrounding area with an eruption of fiery light-purple energy. She ensured that the spell wouldn’t kill her former attackers, but it would certainly keep them from coming after her for while. In the distance, Twilight could have sworn she heard Pinkie Pie yell “ASTRAL FINISH! HYPER COMBO KO! A NEW ANGEL IS ADVENT!” but decided not to pursue the issue any further as she slapped two pairs of hoof cuffs on her incapacitated targets.
Twilight turned her attention to the stage, where only two or three of the blue souls lingered before they were absorbed into Luna and Discord. “I’m impressed that you and your friends were able to dispose of my agents so thoroughly Twilight, but you’ve only saved me the trouble of ending their lives myself.” Celestia’s horn began to glow again, this time surrounding each of the agents and she winked them back to herself on the dais. “It’s time to harvest the souls of Nightmare Moon, Discord, and the gems of disharmony so that—”
“TWILIGHT, MY TAILS TWITCHING TAKE COVER!” cried Pinkie Pie from the other side of the arena.
Chapter 15 End .
Footnotes-Violin Hair-- If you’ve ever seen a violin played, then you know there is a stick that is required to play said instrument. That stick is called a bow and the on the bow there is “hair” that is required to glide across the strings and make the sounds for the violin. Rando fact those hairs are or were made frm horsetails. So when you see the Octavia scare crow in nightmare night, just now that she’s using an ironic instrument.
Hawai’i Neigh- A play on the term Hawai’i nei which means beloved hawaii. And Hawaii interestingly enough isn’t pronounced Huh-Why-Ee, but s instead properly pronounced Huh-Vy-Ee-Nay. THE MORE YOU KNOW!