Celestia, the Princess of the Day, the Undimming Star, the Solar Sister, triarch of Equestria, the Unholy Knitter, She Who Cooks Horrors and Madness. She was an alicorn of many names, and titles. But mostly she was seen as a wise and benevolent ruler, who overlooked many schools and guided many young prodigies throughout the ages. Who could ask for a more perfect princess? Barring the fact she was banned from the Knitters Guild, the Royal Kitchens, and Several Secret Societies she's accidentally set on fire. But other than that, pure perfection.
"Sister dearest? Are you lost in thought again?" Luna asked as she saw her sister coo while staring blankly at her triple decker fudge cake.
"Of course not, I'm just thinking on how lucky I am to be me," Celestia sighed contentedly.
"It's not like you to slip into moments of vainglory, what were you thinking about?" Luna asked while spearing her jelly doughnut hole with her fork.
"Well, it's just that I'm happy that I make our little ponies happy, and even happier that I can raise such brilliant minds to become such amazing mages."
"Ah! That is good," Luna nodded in acknowledgment, "although when was the last time you actually attended a class?"
"Attended a class? Why it was ... seven centuries ago? It's not like I need it. After all, my students do well enough if I give them a book, and toss things their way ... well eventually," she said thinking of some of her students. Which made her remember the Sunset Shimmers of her day, "other than a few. But mostly they do fine."
"So you're telling me that you raise students, and are in charge of a school, yet you don't actually go to sharpen your skills or learn new discoveries of magic?" Luna asked incredulously.
"Of course not, I'm a princess and haven't had the free time to go frolicking among the hallowed halls of learning," Celestia scoffed.
"Well, what if I took over for a while, and gave you the free time. I'm sure nothing can go wrong if you were to go for a day," Luna offered. She felt an ache in the front of her skull at the thought of doing double princessly shifts. But the thought of her sister not being as "in touch" with her places of learning as she should be was beyond unacceptable.
"Are you sure?" Celestia asked.
"I'm most certain," Luna replied.
"Do you have your bagged lunch?" Luna asked.
"Your scrolls and parchment?"
"But of course."
"Luna, I have everything I need. All I need to do now is apply a hyper dimensional spell of holding to my satchel, and everything shall be set."
Luna looked at her as if she were about to say something more but knowing that holding off for Day Court was going to bring even more headaches than not gave a simple nod, "Now don't forget Tia. If you need me I shall be dealing with the Parasprites and tranquilizers."
"You mean petitioners Luna," Celestia admonished.
"Isn't that what I said? Now be off with ye. I have several headache potions that need downing, and to ensure the cooks know to send me coffee and sweets," Luna replied before trotting off, leaving her sister to her own devices.
"Now let's see here, I need to carry the i, watch for the Shrew Dingers Equation, and keep in mind Plank's Constant ..." Celestia ran through the math in her head, and cast the spell that would alter space-time, and it's interactions with n-th space to create a bag of infinitely expanding proportions, while keeping her bag as light as a feather. After all, with all the greatness of a place of learning she expected that she would need lots of room for important scholastic matters.
As the spell was released. She felt a strong pull that seemed to warp the room around her until she closed the bag, "That was a little more strong than I remember. But at least I proved that black holes are a myth, since light does in fact escape from Luna's plot. Her accidentally farting near the hearth fire was proof enough for that."
And with a successful bag of warped time-space, she was off to visit her first of schools. Celestia's Culinary Academy. After that, it was three more schools to attend and she would show Luna that she was just as able as her students.
Celestia's Academy of the Culinary Arts, was a strange one. In that it was one that while Celestia created, and all her royal cooks came from the school. She had no real hoof in it. It might have been the tear filled pleading of her royal chefs who begged her not to cook for the school, or her royal advisors saying the nation couldn't afford such an 'extravagant gift', complete with air quotes for whatever reason, or it might have been the petition that the board of directors for her schools gave her when it first opened two hundred years ago.
But that was then, now, she needed to see what greatness her school was producing. Hopefully poach a few new chefs for her kitchens while they were still in school, Oh! Think of it, taking a cook as a protege! I haven't done that before. I'll show those neigh sayers that I can cook! I even cooked Luna a mystery cake when she first got here from my secret kitchen. She didn't even turn colors that time, or start speaking in tongues, or spontaneously combust or anything. She even said my cooking has improved since her exile!
She walked through the main doors and looked at the map showing the school's layout. Such implementations were her ideas originally, it was poetic, helping young explorers of knowledge find their path through their quest for self betterment. Locating the Dean's Office, she merrily trotted there like a school filly in a sweets shop.
As she entered the Waiting Room, she had to deal with the normal formalities. Ponies nearly giving themselves concussions trying to bow to her, her telling them to rise, and giving them a warm, caring, smile. With the warmth of a thousand smiling mothers. Then there was the talk with the dean himself.
Dean Breaks Ittuya, was a finely built, broad shouldered, tan unicorn stallion. Whose deep indigo mane was cut in a no-nonsense style. Looked absolutely flabbergasted as Celestia walked into his office, as he hurriedly shoved something into his mahogany desk drawer.
"So, Princess Celestia, what can I do for you today?" His rich, honey toned voice asked with a slight warble. The look on his face made it apparent that it really was a long time coming to make herself known to the school, rather than it's outdoor, far removed from the school, contests she judged at.
"Well my sister and I were speaking, and it seems that I have been neglecting my own scholastic pursuits for quite some time. So to re-acquaint myself with the modern world of academia. I am going on a little crash course as it were through my schools. To learn a bit, and make sure that I haven't gotten rusty over the centuries," Celestia pleasantly replied.
"So," Dean Breaks gulped, "You want to try your hoof at cooking?"
"Here, at this school?" He imperceptibly shuddered.
"Of course. I'll have you know that even my sister said my cooking has improved, and I taught my student everything she knows about the subject," Celestia said with a hint of pride.
She could see the sweat forming on the dean's brow as he said, "But of course. Well, I'll get an aide to show you to some classes, let you see the syllabus, and send word to the chefs. I hope you enjoy your time here princess."
"Of course, and thank you for putting up with this inconvenience. I'm sure you'll barely know I'm here," Celestia said gracefully.
As she left the dean took out a frame that help the most dire of warnings, For the love of all things holy, unholy, and everything inbetween. Never let Celestia near a kitchen!!! Signed by the famous chef, Chef Boire De.
Sighing he pressed the communication rune on his desk, "To all faculty members. Celestia is gracing us with her presence today. Let her see how we do things here, and if you mess up. I swear to Luna's drunken teats I'll bust you down so far, you'll be beneath even the lowliest of fast order cooks for a year!" He yelled with love, "Oh, and sorry princess for using your sisters name in vain. It's a new tradition. Also I need a sacri-an aide to show our princess around."
Celestia knew she had to remember that oath for her sister later. As well as any other interesting vernacular she would pick up this day. She opened her bag to make sure everything was in order when she heard a squeak. She looked around, and although things looked slightly out of place the receptionist had gone missing. That's odd, I wonder where that mare went off too. Oh well, I guess the call of nature called her.
A timid looking pegasus mare trotted in. She reminded her of Dame Fluttershy from the twitchiness of the pony before her, her graceful curves, and of course her tribe. But that's where the similarities ended. This mare was opalescent blue, with a turquoise mane wrapped in a bun, and amethyst eyes. Wearing the most adorable little chefs coat, "Hello my little pony, what might your name be?"
"Close Call princess," Close Call replied while falling into a bow so fast Celestia was surprised she didn't create a sonic rainboom with her face.
"Rise Close Call. Am I to hazard a guess that you are the 'saccharin aide'?"
Close Call gulped loudly at that and gave a nervous nod.
"I'm curious, I've never heard of that term before, is it new?"
"Something like that," Close Call said in an almost inaudible whisper.
Poor dear, such crippling shyness. I'm so proud that she's doing something as social as cooking. Maybe Fluttershy would benefit from a place like this as well. Outloud Celestia beamed, "Well this is good, even now I'm learning something new. In my days we only had aides. So what does this saccharin aide do?"
"Things, and stuff. You know?" Close Call replied noncommittally.
Unless her act as a sacrifice was used more quickly than she anticipated. Such as in never, or at least until she had a coltfriend if she was lucky enough to bag one of the single ones, or at least adopted a few foals and lived until the ripe old age of not dead today. After all ponies of her position were used for jobs that could kill careers, or worse, leave her taste deaf forever if not handled with care. And losing one's ability to taste was worse than a thousand deaths.
"Well ... things and stuff are good," Celestia hummed, "Let's get going shall we?" With as timid as she looks, I'm surprised that she can hold a conversation this well. I can't wait to see her in her element, she might be the perfect mirror into Fluttershy. Then I can help Twilight with her studies into 'hooking up' Fluttershy with Pinkie Pie.
Celestia was drooling as she walked through the hallways. The aroma of food, the sound of food being prepared. She thought Elysium would be just like this hallway. Not that she'd be allowed to go there, not after the restraining order from the Guardians of the Gates. Sore losers. I beat them in a game of 6th dimensional chess and they ban me for embarrassing them in front of the other Celestials. I'll find a way to sneak into Elysium someday. Maybe me and Jessie can challenge them to a game of poker. The God of Undeath is quite fun when you get past his appearance.
Celestia was so lost in thought she didn't even notice where they were going unto the double doors before her. Their white coated venere now with a princessly dent in them still touched Celestia's heart that they'd use her coat color to decorate most of the school in. Although it was hard to go wrong with white. After all it was her second favorite color next to rainbow sherbert.
"So this is the Basic Cooking Class 101, where students are taught the foundations for later cooking. I think this would be a good start right?" Close Call asked.
"Of course, will I need parchment for note taking?" Celestia said enthusiastically. Hopping up and down with glee.
"Not really, it's all hooves on. If that's alright with you."
"Oh but of course. I am in your capable hooves Close Call. I shall defer to your judgement."
"Alright, thank you princess," Close Call bowed demurely before yelling, "Hey Chef! I got another pony for the wringer. It's the Princess!"
"Eh! Cel- I mean Luna's Buttery Nipples! Hey! Class! Look sharp, we got a princess here!" The chef called out to her class who all snapped to attention.
"So you're here to learn how to cook?"
"Yes! And please treat me like you'd do any student. I insist." Celestia squee'd.
"Are you sure?"
"Alright then. I ask again. Are you here to learn how to cook?" She said louder than before.
Taking this as a cue that she should speak loudly as well. Celestia let loose the Royal Canterlot Voice, "YES!"
The windows exploded, pots turned to dust, and from as far as Ponyville ponies could have sworn that their pure, saintly princess had orgasmed most hardly. At least that's one of the things the evening newspapers would write that evening. Skyrocketing attendance for generations to come.
But the ponies in the room could have sworn that they saw the life pass before their eyes. When the teacher recovered after Celestia cast a restoration spell to fix them and the room, looked at her and said, "You got enthusiasm. But you're wrong!"
"Wrong?" Tia replied with her eyes misting over, and lip quivering.
"Wrong!" The chef replied, "Everyone can cook. You're here to shape whatever measly slop you call cooking, and make it art!"
Celestia's face transformed into one of inspired joy, "Then art I shall make!"
"That's the spirit. Now get to a station before I use you for a demonstration," she said taking a butcher knife and slamming it intimidatingly into a cutting board.
Oh! These traditions are strange but oddly motivating. I should get Luna to let me go to my schools more often! And these sayings they have are quite amusing. I wonder when they'll use my name?
"So before our esteemed princess exploded the room, we were learning to make sauce. Sauces are the easiest things to make, if you can't make a sauce you deserve to have Celestia torch your backsides until they are broasted. No offense Celestia."
"None taken, I'm quite interested in seeing my name used. I promise to not take offense," Celestia remarked with a saintly smile.
"Thank-bucking Celestia on a pogo stick. I thought we'd never get around to using your name with your gilded flanks gracing our room."
"Thanks princess," she replied, "now onto sauces. Today we're making spaghetti sauce. It's as easy as rubbing one off."
Celestia raised her left forehoof in the air waving it frantically, her royal rump denting the chair as she bounced excitedly like a school filly, "Yes princess?" The teacher asked.
"What does this 'rubbing one off' mean?"
The room burst into laughter, even Close Call was rolling on the ground in tears of laughter, "Seriously?"
"Yes, I'm quite unfamiliar with the term, or what I'm supposed to be rubbing, or what needs to come off."
"Well ... you see ... how to explain ..." The teacher fumbled for an answer to the immortal ruler, "you're student is supposed to be a super genius right?"
"Yes. She's quite a smart mare. Why?" Celestia asked.
"Ask her. She'd be able to explain it better," the teacher replied with a blush gracing her white coat, "anyways this isn't that type of education. Now settle down. Aide! I need you to help Princess Celestia prep her station."
"You mean Saccharine Aide right?" Celestia pipped.
"Sure, that, Close Call you poor, poor mare. I'll have nice things to say about you," she replied.
"Um .. alright. She seems like a good pony," Celestia said utterly lost in the conversation. Something she was unused to for over a thousand years. Alas it just struck home how invaluable the pony helping her was. Maybe since Saccharine was sugar, and thus of vital importance to Equestria's economy. A Saccharine Aide was an indispensable part of the staff.
Celestia grinned at her wisdom and nodded to herself. She must make that position available for her castle as well. She felt herself brimming with a humble sense of honor at such an irreplaceable member of their faculty helping her learn. Maybe she could do something nice for the mare.
Celestia was amazed by the graceful gliding and finesse Close Call showed maneuvering around the work stations. In no time at all Celestia was prepped, and given tips on basic cooking sanitation. And at long last she was ready to cook.
"Now," the teacher spoke up, "I want you to all crush the pomodoro tomatoes until they are pure pulp. Then add the measured spices and stir until finely blended."
Celestia watched her fellow students with their task, and grinned at the harmony they all exhibited. Copying them and the directions to the letter. She could already see where she went wrong last time she made pasta sauce. Although she was sad pickled eggs, sour pickles, and cider apple chunks weren't used. It still looked somewhat edible.
"Now for the easy part. Simply put it over a low flame, and let it go to a light boil. Now as we are waiting. When making your own pasta sauces, it's important to first learn how to make what's already been done. See what has worked in the past, and then when you are ready. Add your own twist. Learn what goes well with what type of tomato, what doesn't, and try to find things that compliment tastes and textures.
"Not all works of art are made overnight, other than lucky accidents. So don't feel you have to rush things. Remember, as I always say," The teacher lectured.
The students replied the mantra as one, "Good food, needs strong foundations."
"That's right. I'll make chefs out of you yet!" She replied with a smile.
She really is inspiring. As for strong foundations. I've used the sun to cook, and what's stronger than the sun? So using her psionic connection to the sun, she added a bit of heat to speed up the cooking process.
Everyone looked in shock as the sauce took on a caramelized hue, and grew, and grew, and grew some more. The teacher could only ask, "What did you do?"
While Close Call moaned, "Why me?"
Before it exploded with the force of a nova. Accidentally opening her satchel and with a loud glurp, Celestia saw it all being sucked into her bag. And an utterly empty class room. "Oh Snickerdoodles and Tartar Sauce!" Celestia cussed, "Everypony's gone. I hope they didn't disintegrate, Luna won't ever let me live it down if I did that again. Last time it took her seventy generations before she let up.
"But sauce, I already have lunch packed with love from my dear Woona. So I have to take you ..." Celestia stopped as she opened the bag and saw all the class within her satchel, "Oh double Snickerdoodles! I forgot to divide by Mule Ear's Identity coupled with the solution of the division of 0 via the Squeeze Theorem. How could I forget my basic transcendental planar paths? Let's get you out of there."
Celestia pulled her subjects out, and the glazen pulsating mass connecting them. Like a saucy heart with that poor Receptionist from earlier. who knows how being stuck in N-time will effect her?
And as to answer her. The Receptionist droned, "I saw the end times."
"And it was pasta sauce flavored," the others chanted.
"The great, flying spaghetti monster," she started.
"Shall signal the end times."
"For he shall smother all creation in his sauces."
"Then the great Pigeoto shall awaken."
"And eat all the stars and fart out novas."
They all finished with, "And it shall be super effective." Before passing out.
Celestia looked upon them and sighed. Taking the thick mass, which had now solidified into a rather strong substance Celestia took comfort that at least it was strong. Before waking up her little ponies, only for them to look around in confusion.
"Princess!" They all yelled as one. Followed by a frenetic mass of confused shouts that were silenced when Celestia raised her forehoof.
"Now Close Call," Celestia started to asked before Close Call interrupted her.
"How'd you know my name?" Close Call gushed.
"What is the last thing you remember?"
"Well I woke up this morning, came to school, and that's all. Today is the fifteenth of May right?"
"It is. Well you are my Saccharine Aide, which it has been an honor to have such an indispensible member of the faculty made available to me. Then we went here to learn to cook ... and I might have misinterpreted the teacher's words," Celestia confessed.
Close Call mouthed the word and it clicked that Celestia somehow mashed up Sacrifice and Aide together before she could mention anything the teacher interrupted.
"What words?" The Teacher asked.
"Good food requires strong foundations."
"Ah! What did you do?"
"Well, what's stronger than the sun?"
"Let me get this straight ... you used the sun, to cook your sauce?"
"And it ne ... you ... " Celestia watched the twitching of the teacher's left eye.
"If it helps, you used Luna's name in your new traditional sayings, and I gave permission to use mine as well. If it helps, tell me what you'd tell any student who did this."
"That tried using the sun to cook?"
"Tirek's Tainted Left Nut Sack! Are you bucking mad!?" She shouted. Waving her hooves spastically in the air, "By Celestia's Sunny Plot, were you trying to kill everyone! Or did you simply wake up and decide it would be a good day to nuke the school!?"
After huffing angrily and coming to her senses she added a half hearted, "no offense princess."
"No ... no ... I deserve that. I was just thinking that I have a strong tie to the sun, and nothing's stronger than that. So ... it would be good. I'm sorry," Celestia whimpered.
"Ah! It's like kicking a basket of puppies. Listen ... did you listen to all of my lecture?"
"And did I say anything about following directions before experimenting?"
"And did I say it would be a good idea to use any special talents when messing with time honored basics needed to get a good foundation?"
"No you didn't."
"Good, now we both learned something today. I learned to be more thorough when talking to alicorns who come to my class, and hopefully you learned your lesson as well."
"I think I learned many valuable lessons. Most of all, to work on following directions before being creative. Well I think I shall be off to the next school. Hopefully I can come back and try my hoof at this again."