by Hurgusburgus

Chapter 18

Discord was more than familiar with the phrase 'between a rock and a hard place'.

But this was beyond ridiculous, he reflected, as the huge mech applied more pressure, smashing him deeper into the ground. Apparently, the machine did not take too kindly to him threatening its monarch.



The metal leg rose, and he clung to it, scrabbling up along the armour plating, avoiding the stray bullets whizzing at him from ground level. Immediately, he leapt clear, transforming into a swarm of hundreds of green plastic soldier figurines, descending safely to the ground with the aid of hundreds of tiny parachutes. Soon as they hit the ground, they reformed into Discord; he bolted, narrowly avoiding getting trampled into ground again by the wrathful machine. Puffs of dirt were kicked up by the impact of bullets as the mech's armaments tracked the spirit of chaos, the machine letting out an irritated noise.


There was a distorted crack of thunder, followed by a concussive blast of air that washed across the landscape – he spared a brief look towards the source of noise and his heart sank as he saw another one of the huge starships materialise into existence, four more Executioners already descending from the yawning chasm in its belly.

Not as planned.


Drawing upon his powers, he made a giant wall erupt from the ground, built from toffee blocks, effectively halting the Executioner's progress. Panting, he examined the makeshift fortifications, blanching as Executioner One rammed it, stumbling as the wall held.


Undeterred, the machine of war charged forward again.


Discord was quick to respond as he put more magic into the wall, trying to stop it from falling. “No, Anna, go away!”

ELSA, PLEASE, Executioner One rumbled, slamming its armoured self into the wall once more, making several bricks shatter from the force, the machine's spotlights glaring balefully at the draconequus through the cracks. IT KINDA HAS TO BE A METH LAB.

Time to make like a tree and get out of here, Discord reasoned, letting the wall fall to pieces as he ran away. His hopes to escape unnoticed sank as one of the alien gunships descended upon him, spitting a veritable storm of death at him – however, it didn't take much effort to clog up one of the engine intakes with a big lump of chewing gum, sending the aircraft tumbling to the ground, where it ploughed a furrow in the soil, missing one of its rotors once it came to a halt.

The damage was done, however – with an earsplitting boom, a row of missiles ripped the ground apart in front of him, forcing the draconequus to stop.


Well, obviously Executioner One wouldn't let up. And it wouldn't be long before Celestia returned with the Elements.

There was one last thing he could try, though. One last ditch effort to escape. Turning to face the machine, he bellowed at the top of his lungs.


With the groan of stressed metal, Executioner One ground to a halt, looming above the nervous god of chaos – immobile, as if hewn from stone. He held his breath, also standing still, anxiously waiting for something to happen.

And something did happen.


The Executioner toppled forward, pancaking Discord before he even had a chance to object.

The inanely giggling deity cooed, feebly trying to reach towards the machine floating away from him.

“Can I go into the light, too? Wee snaw...”

Such was his state of debilitation that he did not notice a certain alicorn approach him, with certain Element Bearers in tow.

And then he got so stoned Snoop Dogg would be proud.

smoke weed erryday

“Will he be alright?” Celestia queried as she eyed the immobile mech ascend into the Voidhammer's hangar, to which Lieia shrugged slowly in response, picking bits of chewing gum from her hair.

“Probably, yeah. Xalathii have a lot of backups in place. Hah... Divide by zero. That's the oldest fuckin' trick in the book and a half.”

“What do you mean?”

“Simple maths, princess – you can't divide anything by zero. A thousand years ago, back on Earth, people had this weird idea, apparently, that managing to divide by zero would make a black hole that'd destroy the planet. Don't ask me how – people were weird like that. ”

“I'll take your word for it, then.”

“Sure, whatever. By the way, you still sure you don't need help with that Frankenstein of yours?”

“Thank you for the offer, but I think we've got him under control.”

“If you say so. Well, I got a war to win. Farewell, Princess.”

Celestia did not, at the time, know what compelled her to leap at the woman in an attempt to play tonsil tennis with her. She later discerned that it had been more of Discord's meddling.

At the moment, however, she did end up getting punched in the face for her efforts, the blow knocking her out cold. After that, the Rebels left Equestria post-haste.

“You must think you were being awful funny back there. My face still feels like I tried to kiss a speeding freight train.”

Eh, it's up there.

“Well, I'm the one who'll have the last laugh now, Discord.”

Is that a cage full of pigeons? That better not be a-It is a cage full of pigeons. I hate you. I hate you so much, Celestia.

“The feeling's mutual, trust me.”

The Executioner sat in its cradle, immobile and silent, as hundreds of engineers scurried all over its massive hull, carrying out repairs.

The Xalathii had been thus far unsuccessful in coaxing its AI out from wherever it had gone.

Thus, it was a complete surprise when its loudspeakers sparked into life.


Four years later

Twilight yawned as she placed the books back in the shelf. Her bed beckoned to her with its siren song, and she had to fight off the impulse to just leave the books unshelved until the next morning. But she would never leave any task half-done.


There were three knocks on the front door and she sighed irately – who could possibly be bothering her at this hour?

Knock, knock, knock.

Sighing in resignation, she paused in her task, going over to the door, pulling it open, and promptly freezing in shock as she saw the tall, gleaming machine standing there, its glowing blue eyes glinting with amusement at her flabbergasted expression.

“Good to see you again, Twilight Sparkle.”

A long moment passed as Twilight made quiet, choking noises of shock, staring wide-eyed at Khanartho.

“Are you quite alright?”


“Oh, dear, it seems I have broken you.”

Twilight listened, wide-eyed, sleep deprivation temporarily forgotten as the Xalathii regaled her with everything that had happened ever since that fateful day – the Coalition had won the war, with the remnants of both Advent and Vasari successfully integrated in the alliance. The Advent had been permitted to resettle their ancient homeworld, while the nomadic Vasari were granted a sector of unexplored space to colonise as they saw fit. Khanartho spoke of the makings of a bright and prosperity-filled future, now that the factories of war were repurposed for undoing the devastation brought upon by the war.

However, that night, he shared a dark secret with her that chilled her to the very core – the ancient enemy of Asahi, called Doom Harvesters, had returned after uncounted millennia. They were responsible for the near-extinction of the Asahi Empire's leaders in a collossal conflict that left only seven Asahi alive, and had been, for ten thousand years, patiently chasing after the Vasari.

In a monumental battle that encompassed several solar systems, the remnants of the Vasari Loyalists had crumpled in mere minutes. It wasn't until the Doom Harvesters arrived that the Asahi personally joined the conflict, bringing their worldships along – vast starships that hailed from an age when only the Asahi explored the universe, each the size of a small planet. Only two had been recovered ever since the Empire had been founded.

Thus emboldened, the combined armada fought valiantly against a tireless, vastly powerful foe that knew only hunger. The cost had been high, all but a pyrrhic victory. But a victory nonetheless. The Doom Harvesters were erased from existence, and that was the end.

“Did I ever tell you the story of me old bones..?” Gauge chirped from her tiny makeshift throne placed on top of Luna's seat of power. The midnight-blue alicorn blinked in confusion, turning to regard her surrogate daughter.


“Let me tell you the story of me old bones. There was a time in a pirate's life, when we didn't have such old bones.” Again, Gauge added emphasis on that particular word, further confusing the diarch. “It was a dark and dreary night, and me old bones were on fire.”


“I used to be brave, but that was before the plague hit.”


“Maybe the helicopter is made of chocolate.”