• Published 18th Sep 2013
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My Little Investigations: The Silent Dirge - Metool Bard

Some maniac is aiming to silence every musician in Equestria. I, for one, will not stand for it.

  • ...

Confrontation: Bon-Bon

April 9, 2:33 PM
Lincolt Center
The Whinnyton Maresalis Theater

"Look, ma'am. This area's off-limits. You can't be in here."

"I don't care! I need to find her!"

"Well, she ain't here."

"Horse apples! There's nowhere else she can be!"

When we arrived at the theater, I began to feel a slight sense of dread. We stumbled upon yet another argument, this time between Bon-Bon and Mike Check. And this debate was particularly heated; mostly due to Bon-Bon being absolutely hysterical. Vinyl drew in a sharp breath through her teeth.

"Dum dee dum dum~," she said half-jokingly.

"Very cute, Vinyl," I growled, giving her a dirty look. However, I did share her sentiments. Bon-Bon's rather high-strung as it is. I shudder to think what would happen if I showed her the letter Vinyl found.

"Listen, I'll keep an eye out for her if it'll make you feel better," said Mike flatly. "But I can't let you in here. There's an important investigation going on right now."

"I have run myself ragged searching this place from top to bottom!" Bon-Bon screamed. "Lyra has to be in there! I have to get to her before that dock-hole Star Maker does!"

"I do believe my ears are burning."

Lovely. As if this situation wasn't bad enough, Star Maker himself had to come in and run the risk of setting Bon-Bon off. Then again, Bon-Bon was making such a scene that I'm rather certain that most of the convention floor was privy to this exchange.

"And, who the hay are you?" said Mike, narrowing his eyes.

"My card," said Star Maker, giving Mike his business card. Mike read it over and raised an eyebrow.

"Well, for the record, you're not allowed in here, either," he said with a snort.

"Oh, don't mind me," said Star Maker, taking out his handkerchief and cleaning his shades. "I just wanted to know what all the hubbub was about."

Bon-Bon shot Star Maker a glare. "Don't act like you don't know," she snarled. "Lyra's run off somewhere, and it's your fault!"

"My fault? I didn't even talk to her yet," said Star Maker. "You have been preventing me from doing so."

I wasn't sure if that was a lie or not. I recalled my conversation I had with Lyra earlier today, and she said that she and Star Maker did talk to each other. But on the other hoof, Bon-Bon never brought it up during their debate over breakfast. While the connection to the death threats was tangental at best, I figured it was best to intervene and sort this out. If anything, it might give me more clues to Lyra's disappearance.

"Excuse me," I said, walking up to the group. "I couldn't help but overhear your little, conversation."

Mike looked up at me and gave me a nod. "Hey there, Melody. Don't worry, I've got this under control. If you're here to see Slick, he's over there with Point Dexter."

"Hey! How come she's allowed in here?!" Bon-Bon demanded.

Before Mike could answer, I cleared my throat.

"Actually, I think I might be able to help sort this out," I said. "First, I ask that you calm down for a moment, Ms. Bon-Bon."

"How can I be calm at a time like this?!" Bon-Bon yelled.

"Because if you're not, I won't be able to help you," I said firmly. "I'm worried about Lyra as well, but it won't do us any good to panic."

Vinyl opened her mouth to take a potshot at me, but quickly thought better of it when I gave her a dirty look. I bet anything she was going to tell me to follow my own advice. When I turned back to Bon-Bon, she was making a valiant effort to calm herself.

"Alright, we'll do this your way," she said. "What's your idea?"

"Let's start off by backing up a bit," I said. "I want to hear about how this whole affair began."

"You're talking about Lyra getting pestered by this motherbucker, right?" said Bon-Bon, tilting her head at Star Maker.

"Um, I'm standing right here, you know!" Star Maker shouted indignantly.

"So I noticed," said Bon-Bon, her disdain clearly evident in her voice.

"Uh, let's not lose track here," I said, trying to keep order. "To answer your question, that is what I'm referring to."

"Ah," said Bon-Bon with a nod. "Alright, I'll tell you exactly what's going on here."

"Be forewarned that I will call you out on any baseless slander in your story, Ms. Bon-Bon," said Star Maker firmly.

Bon-Bon responded with a simple snort before turning back to me. "Anyway, it's like this..."

Testimony: The Whole Affair

"Everything started when we first got to the festival," said Bon-Bon. "Lyra was immediately approached by this bastard Star Maker, who claimed that she should be a star. We both respectfully declined at first, but he kept following Lyra around and pestering her until Vinyl's set began. The next morning, Lyra got an invitation to join Star Maker for breakfast. She really didn't want to go, so I went in her stead while she went to the festival; both to prepare for her performance tonight and to clear her mind. I haven't seen her since we parted ways at the hotel."

"Lies! Nothing but slanderous lies!" Star Maker barked.

"Oh, and like you would tell the truth," said Bon-Bon, rolling her eyes.

"Both of you knock it off before I have Point Dexter show you the door," Mike snarled. He then sighed. "You sure this is gonna work, Melody?"

"It's alright, Mr. Check. I can handle this," I said. I then furrowed my brow. Bon-Bon's story sounded straightforward enough, but I couldn't shake the feeling that something was missing. I had to ask a few more questions.

"I remember that you and Mr. Maker had quite the quarrel this morning," I said. "He claims that you've been barring his every chance to speak to Lyra. Is this true?"

"No, it's not," said Bon-Bon, shaking her head. "I heard Lyra tell him flat-out that she wasn't interested."

"Ha! A likely story," Star Maker scoffed. "She hasn't said a word to me!"

"What? I heard it straight from her mouth!" Bon-Bon protested.

Star Maker sighed. "The tighter you grip onto your precious friend, Ms. Bon-Bon, the more she slips through your hooves," he said somberly. "Madam, don't believe her. She's too afraid of change to make a rational decision here."

"Don't try to turn this around, you prick!" Bon-Bon spat. "This is all your fault!"

"Stop it, both of you!"

All eyes were on me as I moved to break up the argument.

"Ms. Bon-Bon, there's something about your story that doesn't add up," I said.

Bon-Bon gasped. "Wh-what?! Why are you taking his side?!" she screamed.

"I'm not," I said. "I actually managed to talk to Lyra before she disappeared. She told me herself that she did indeed talk to Star Maker, and that she said she wasn't interested in his deal."

"That's not true!" Star Maker exclaimed. "Ms. Bon-Bon has been a constant obstruction to me!"

"So you say," I said calmly, adjusting my bow-tie. "Which is why I'm curious as to why it didn't come up during your debate over breakfast. Ms. Bon-Bon, you didn't tell him at any point that Lyra had already said no."

"Because he's too stubborn to admit it," said Bon-Bon. "All last night, he kept claiming that Lyra's refusal was just what I wanted to hear from her. And by the way, that is an outright lie. I was letting Lyra speak for herself."

"How do you know that to be true?" said Star Maker, lowering his shades. "How do you know she simply wasn't sparing your feelings?"

"Because she told me this morning," Bon-Bon answered without missing a beat.

"She still could've been saying what you wanted to hear," said Star Maker.

"That's outrageous! Lyra would never lie to me like that!" shouted an aghast Bon-Bon. "You don't know a Celestia-damn thing about us!"

"Well, why don't we get the answer straight from the horse's mouth, hmm?" said Star Maker. "Oh, that's right. She's not here right now."

"You think I don't know that?!" Bon-Bon barked. "I've been tearing this place apart looking for her because I know you were gonna try and sweet talk her into a deal! Heck, for all I know, she probably ran away 'cause she was unable to handle the pressure!"

Oh dear. I was hoping to show Bon-Bon this when she was in a better mood, but it looks like that isn't going to be the case. I sighed.

"Actually, that's incorrect," I said sadly.

Bon-Bon looked at me. "Wh-what do you mean, Ms. Octavia?"

"Vinyl found this in Performance Studio B, where she was last seen," I said, giving Bon-Bon the letter. "I suggest you sit down."

Bon-Bon snatched the letter from my hooves and read it over. When she finished, the piece of paper slipped out of her hooves and fluttered to the ground. Bon-Bon's eyes were wide and watery. Her lip quivered. Her hooves shook. She closed her eyes and tensed her shoulders, trembling all the while.

"H-hey, what's wrong?" asked Mike. "What does it say?"

Bon-Bon's eyes snapped open, and a blazing inferno could be seen through her tears. She turned to Star Maker savagely.

"So, that's it, huh?" she spat. "You couldn't convince Lyra to sign your stupid contract, so you took her by force! Give her back, you sunnova bitch!"

"Wh-what?! Ms. Bon-Bon, what are you talking about?!" Star Maker exclaimed.

"Don't buck with me, you snake!" Bon-Bon screamed. "You ponynapped her! Give her back, or I'll kick your teeth in!"

"M-Ms. Bon-Bon, there must be some mistake..." said a nervous Star Maker, wiping the sweat from his brow with his handkerchief.

"My only mistake was trying to be civil with you!" Bon-Bon roared, arching her back and pawing the ground. "Now you're gonna get it!"

"Yo, Point! We've got a situation here!"

Mike used his magic to grab a hold of Bon-Bon's tail while he activated his headset. Bon-Bon squirmed and struggled against his magical grip.

"Let me at him!" she yelled. "He can't get away with this!"

"Ma'am, if you don't get a hold of yourself in two seconds, I'm gonna have Point Dexter throw you out on your dock," Mike warned. "I really don't wanna do that."

Bon-Bon growled angrily, but she complied with Mike's request.

"Now, what's all this about?" asked Star Maker. "I'm not the kind to kidnap ponies, Ms. Bon-Bon."

"Then how do you explain this?" Bon-Bon inquired, picking up the letter and thrusting it into Star Maker's face. Star Maker raised an eyebrow.

"I've never seen this before," said he.

"Right. Sure you haven't," said Bon-Bon, her voice dripping with sarcasm.

I hate to say it, but I think Bon-Bon's wrong about this. Star Maker may be quite, shady, but there's no way he was responsible for Lyra's disappearance.

"If you don't mind, I'd like to hear why you think Mr. Maker is the culprit," I said.

"Oh, it should be pretty obvious," scoffed Bon-Bon.

"Well, just for clarity's sake, perhaps you should enlighten us," I said, folding my forelegs.

"Alright then, I will," said Bon-Bon, clearing her throat.

Argument: Star Maker's Crime

"We already know that Star Maker wants to sign Lyra up for a contract and make her a star or some such crap," said Bon-Bon. "It's clear to me that he still thinks that Lyra's decision is not her own, even though it clearly is. So, he had an argument with her, and then kidnapped her. This letter was meant for me, saying that I had to give her up if I wanted her to be safe."

Her argument was fine up until that last part. It's obvious that she's not thinking clearly. Although I truly sympathize with her, I had to set her straight. No good would come out of a false accusation.

"So, you claim that this letter was meant for you," I said.

"Who else could it be for?" Bon-Bon snapped.

"Mind reading it again?"

Bon-Bon blinked. "What?"

"Not once in the letter did Lyra mention your name," I said. "In fact, in the postscript, she says; 'Whoever is reading this, do the opposite of that.' First of all, why would she say that and not just tell you where she is? Second, if this was meant for you, why didn't she refer to you by name?"

Bon-Bon's face turned beet red. "I, um, I... BUCK ME!"

She of course had no response for that. Obviously, she had skipped over that part of the letter and jumped to conclusions.

"So you see, Ms. Bon-Bon. Mr. Maker had nothing to do with Lyra's abduction," I said.

"W-wait a minute!" said Bon-Bon. "If that's so, then what about this? 'If you want to see me again, give into the demands.' What the hay is she talking about if not this dock-hole trying to run her life?!"

"Ms. Bon-Bon, I'm not demanding anything of Ms. Heartstrings!" protested Star Maker.

"My flank you're not!" Bon-Bon barked back.

"Ms. Bon-Bon, please. Calm yourself," I said sternly. "I think I may have the answer."

Bon-Bon's eyes went wide. "Wh-what? What are you talking about?"

I breathed a deep sigh. This was going to be painful.

"Ms. Bon-Bon, did Lyra get any letters when you checked into the hotel?" I asked.

Bon-Bon struck a thinking attitude. "Now that you mention it, she did mention something about a stupid prank. What about it?"

"It very well may not be a prank," I said darkly. "It's a death threat, saying that if Lyra plays music ever again, she would be killed."

Bon-Bon's mane stood up on-end. "H-How do you know that?"

"I got the same letter," I said. "So did Vinyl and Neon Lights. In fact, I think every musician here got that letter. It's just a theory, but it's possible that whoever sabotaged Vinyl's set last night has also kidnapped Lyra. I can't say for certain why, but whatever the case, she could be in real danger right now. And the same goes for everypony else here."

"Oh, please!" Star Maker said with a snicker. "That's the most ridiculous thing I've ever heard! There isn't a creature alive who doesn't like some form of music!"

"Hey, buddy. Octy's trying to save your flank from Bon-Bon's wrath," said Vinyl sternly. "Show her a bit of gratitude, why doncha?"

"Well, surely she can do that without sounding completely insane," said Star Maker, cleaning his shades with his handkerchief.

"Listen, I wish I was joking about this," I said with a sigh. "But, I don't think we can just dismiss it anymore."

Bon-Bon folded her ears back and stared at the ground. "B-but, who would do this?" she whimpered.

"I don't know," I said. "But I intend to find out."

Star Maker chuckled. "Well, I've certainly had my fill of this absurdity. If you'll excuse me, I'll see if there's anypony else here interested in becoming a star. Hope you all find Ms. Heartstrings, though. I still would like to see her reach her full potential."

With that, he marched off. Vinyl scowled.

"I can see why you don't like that guy," she said. "He's rubbing me the wrong way, too."

"Ditto," said Mike, picking up the ransom note with his magic. "I'm gonna let Slick know about this, and I'll have Point Dexter look into it. Don't worry, ma'am. We'll find Ms. Heartstrings even if we have to turn all of Lincolt Center upside-down."

Bon-Bon nodded. "Th-thank you," she whispered. She then walked slowly away.

"I'd better go with her," said Vinyl. "It looks like she needs some support right now. Seeya later, Tavi."

She then followed Bon-Bon out the door. I gave her a soft smile as she left. There are three truths I've come to learn about Vinyl Scratch. She won't tell you a lie, she won't cross the line once it's been drawn, and she'll never abandon a friend in need. So, beneath all of that bombastic lunacy, she's actually a real sweetheart.

"What do you think Slick Licks will do about this?" I asked, turning back to Mike.

"Probably rearrange the schedule," said Mike with a shrug. "You know what they say: The show must go on. I just hope it doesn't come to that."

"Me neither," I said. "Um, about the death threat theory I mentioned..."

"Before you ask, the jury's still out as far as I'm concerned," said Mike. "It's pretty hard to swallow, but you did know about the transmitter. I'm gonna stay on the fence until I've got some more proof. No offense, Melody."

"None taken," I said with a sigh. "Actually, I wish I was wrong about all this."

Without saying another word, I left with a heavy heart. Lyra's well-being still weighed heavily on my mind, and no amount of festivities would alleviate the burden. Mind you, I did bring this upon myself by insisting to investigate. Well, all I can do at this point is knock on wood and hope that Lyra is found soon.


And as long as I'm engaging in wishful thinking, I'd like this nightmare to end now, please.