• Published 9th Mar 2012
  • 2,108 Views, 35 Comments

Maximum Ride: Cause Saving Just One World is Too Easy - Jspang



A Maximum Ride x mlp crossover cause why the buck not?

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Chapter 9

Canterlot was in absolute chaos. The robot attackers had hardly put up a fight against the well trained and driven Royal Guard, but that was likely because their primary mission had already been completed. As the invaders retreated with only minor casualties on either side, it became increasingly evident that the Princesses' meeting with the leader of the force of unknown attackers had not gone well.

That's probably the biggest understatement I've ever heard, Shining Armor thought to himself as he looked down on the city. Multitudes of brightly colored ponies were running to and fro on the streets below, clearly panicked by the recent battle. Luckily, it seemed that nopony had sustained severe injuries, and damage to personal property was fairly minor. However, the captain feared that would change drastically when the populace learned of the Princesses' failure to return.

The captain left the balcony and made his way through the bustling halls of the castle, studiously ignoring the various members of the staff as well as the slightly manic civilians running back and forth in no discernible pattern. He thanked Faust that they were all either too busy or too crazed to recognize him and ask him questions that he simply did not have the answers to. That would unfortunately come later.

Shining Armor finally came to a stop before his destination: the throne room. With a slight flick of his horn and a flash, he flung the doors open, trying with all his might to appear cool and in charge. The unicorn desperately hoped that the slight trembling in his knees was obscured by his armor.

Taking a deep breath, to steel his nerves, he strode inside, head held high as he observed the throne room's occupants. Nobles and reporters were the majority by far, but there were several common ponies in attendance who had the good sense to find the most powerful ponies in existence. Unfortunately for them, the princesses were currently indisposed.

At the front of the room, standing before the thrones and turned to face the crowd, where Twilight and her fellow Elements of Harmony. None of them seemed particularly happy to be there. From what Shining could tell, the crowd had thrown a fit when the princesses could not be found, so they had turned to his little sis and her friends. The white stallion gritted his teeth and growled internally, furious at the injustice of their treatment on any other occasion. Yep, nothing out of the ordinary on Tuesday, but as soon as there's a crisis, they're rock stars, he thought bitterly. No... they're politicians. Ponies respect rock stars.

Shining Armor muscled his way past the last of the nobles and took his place in front of his sister, answering her grateful smile with what he hoped was a confident grin, but was more likely an uncomfortable grimace. The unicorn looked back to the throng of ponies and saw that he had instantly commanded their attention, probably due to his overly flamboyant armor.

He addressed them with a soothing, almost condescending tone. "Ladies and gentlecolts, please calm down. I ask that you leave the Bearers alone, because they know as little as you do. I must ask you all settle down. I can answer a few questions, but soon I must return to our investigation."

The captain held up a hoof in order to stop the initial flood of questions that he knew was coming. This time, the room took much longer to fall silent. "One at a time, please," he requested tiredly.

A haughty-looking unicorn mare was the first to speak. "Where are the princesses? I would much rather deal with them then a useless soldier."

Shining gritted his teeth and valiantly resisted the urge to shout at her. Was the second part really necessary? he wondered. Pushing his frustrations aside, the stallion struggled to find a delicate way to deliver the news of the princesses' recent leave of absence. "They've been kidnapped."

Shining Armor never really was good at putting things delicately. It probably had something to do with Twilight telling him about the birds and the bees by shoving diagrams in his face... when she was six.

Understandably, the throne room erupted into chaos. Sure, they had just been attacked, but that happened on an almost monthly basis. The princesses were always there afterward to offer guidance and comfort. This time, however, was different, and if there's one thing that freaks ponies out more than anything else, it is things that are different.

Somewhere in the Everfree, blissfully unaware of the ongoing crisis, Zecora sneezed.

"Will you all please..." the captain's voice was swallowed by the noise of the assembled nobles. Regardless, he tried again, a little louder. "If you would all just..." The second attempt had twice the success of the first one. Unfortunately, two times zero is still zero. Shining Armor sighed and channeled a small amount of magic into his horn to cast a voice amplification spell.

As he was inhaling to use his newly-modified voice, an ungodly noise beat him to it. It faintly reminded him of an eighth grader attempting to play the trombone, but he had to admit that it did a great job of shutting up the panicking crowd. When he sent a questioning glance behind him, he saw Twilight and her friends glaring at the pink earth pony, who flashed a smile that was meant to appear innocent while holding a trombone that had most certainly not been present when Shining first arrived. The captain decided that, in the end, he valued his sanity over the answer to that particular paradox and turned back to the crowd of ponies, who were now expectantly awaiting his next words.

Shining Armor took a steadying breath and spoke. "The majority of the guard will be completely focused on locating the princesses and bringing them back to safety. However, it would help us immensely if you all would return to your homes and stay there unless absolutely necessary. We will be doing everything in our power to find them, but more meetings like this use up valuable resources and time. Unfortunately, I must ask that you all vacate the premises."

The captain waited a moment for the crowd to disperse, and nearly growled in frustration when the ponies remained in place and muttered amongst themselves. He opened his mouth to hint more forcefully that they leave, but was once again cut off, this time by a drab-colored stallion wearing a fedora and holding a tell-tale notepad that marked him as a journalist. The rag as a cutie mark implied just what kind of publication he wrote for, as well. "Excuse me, Captain, but I'm Inside Scoop, of The Equestrian Inquirer. I'd like to know the connection between the monsters recently brought to the castle and the attackers. You must admit that the resemblance is clearly visible. Are these creatures the perpetrator's of the attack, and if so, how did the Royal Guard allow such a breach of security to occur?"

This time, Shining didn't bother to even open his mouth. He had anticipated the roar of agreement and further questions before it had begun, and resolved himself to waiting for a moment before demanding silence. What he did not expect, however, was Rainbow Dash to streak forward into the face of the now-terrified reporter. He couldn't make out her words, but her body language suggested vehement defense of the mutants, which confused him slightly. The unicorn knew to take the newspapers with a metric ton of salt, but the pictures he had seen showed that the pegasus and lead creature clearly did not get along. He resolved to put the matter aside for a more important one: shutting up the crowd.

"QUIET!" he roared, horn flaring with magic as he used it to increase his volume. Even Rainbow Dash jumped at the yell, and quickly made her way back to her friends, but not before shooting one last dirty look at Inside Scoop. Shining didn't care. He was just grateful that everypony had finally shut the buck up.

He took what must have been his third steadying breath in half as many minutes. "As far as we know at this time, the creatures known collectively as the flock are in no way to blame for today's attack. We have been led to believe by the bearers of the Elements of Harmony and the princesses that their very presence here was an accident, one caused by our attackers. They have told us that they are as much victims of this mechanical menace as we are," The Unicorn winced internally before he spoke again. "However, due to the timing of the attack, the arrest of the flock for questioning is a priority second only to the location of the princesses."

Like clockwork, the audience exploded into noise again, but this time, Shining Armor's only response was to turn back to his sister and her friends. Their expressions ranged from shock and confusion to downright betrayal, and it made him feel like an absolute heel.

He closed the distance between them and did his best to ignore their accusing glares, instead addressing only Twilight. "Can you get us out of here?" As she nodded dumbly and powered up her horn, Shining offered one last announcement to the still noisy crowd. "Thank you for your time. There will be no further questions." He debated for a moment before finally adding, "And have a lovely day."

With that, the group of seven vanished in a flash of lavender, leaving the ponies gathered to answer their questions only with the echoes of their own voices off the cold, throne room walls.

----------

The first sensation I was aware of when I woke up was pain. It was everywhere. My cuts stung, my bruises ached, my head throbbed, and my back felt like I had been lying on concrete all night. I lay there in agony for what felt like eternity, but I had been through worse. My memory of previous events began to return and I realized the importance of taking stock of my situation. For a brief moment, I found myself wondering why I had not been killed already, but I quickly pushed the thoughts out of my mind, instead focusing on the here and now, resolving to find answers only after the current threat was dealt with, preferably in a violent fashion.

I cracked my eyelids open a tiny fraction, in hopes that potential onlookers would think I was asleep. At first, inky blackness was all I could see, but as my eyes slowly adjusted, I saw that my fears were unwarranted. I was alone.

Now that my privacy was confirmed, I sat up and properly observed my surroundings. What I saw chilled me to the bone. Solid stone floors, walls, and ceiling. A door made of sturdy, steel bars. No sources of light nearby. No flock. No ponies. No escape.

I was in a prison. Caged. Trapped. Like a freak. Like a sub-human. Like an animal. Every excruciating memory of the School and what the whitecoats did to me there came flooding back over me in an instant, and I felt myself begin to hyperventilate. I bolted from my spot on the floor and seized the bars, squeezing them until my knuckles were white, desperately casting my gaze around the tiny room for anything I could use to escape. To break out. To be free. To live. To GET AWAY.

My mouth spewed a string of curses unfit to print as I shook the bars, trying in vain to unhinge the door. An ungodly, metallic clanging drew my attention to the heavy padlock on the other side of the door. Seeing a possible avenue of escape, I shot my arms in between the bars and clawed at the lock.

Several minutes later, all I had to show for my efforts were torn fingernails and bloody fingertips. I fell to a seat in a corner and curled into a ball, whimpering in animalistic fear and pain. I felt tears beginning to form and my vision turned watery, but I quickly blinked them away. I wasn't giving up. I would not break now, even after being thrown right back into my worst nightmare.

That bitch may have kicked my ass and locked me away, but I was far from beaten. The flock still needed me, and if the Nightmare thought I was just going to let her torture us to the brink of humanity again, then she was in for a rude awakening.

Thus resolved, I allowed myself a small smirk and leaned more comfortably into my corner. Someone had to come check on me sooner or later, and when they did, I would be ready for them.

I cast another cursory glance around my tiny room while I attempted to formulate some kind of plan of action. There really wasn't much to look at. It was just over three feet from one wall to the other. I couldn't even stretch my arms out all the way, and I could forget about opening my wings. The length from the door to the back wall was a little more lenient. I could just barely lie flat on the ground, not that I particularly wanted to. Honestly, I'd slept in worse places. The only reason I had lost my cool when I woke up was because, unlike our days on the run, I wasn't free to come and go as I pleased.

Needless to say, the flock's experience at the School traumatized all of us, and I was certainly no exception. Angel's kidnapping and our uninvited visit to Itex's headquarters only served to exacerbate my acute phobia of being trapped. I'm sure the avian DNA swimming around in my bloodstream didn't help, either.

Shaking my head, I forced away those dark thoughts and focused more intently on coming up with a strategy on how I was going to escape. Tried and true as it was, my usual method of punching the bad guys in the face a bunch until they cried for mommy wasn't likely to cut it here. The literal supervillain we were facing probably had something to do with that.

That last thought triggered something in me. Since the flock had shown up in Ponyworld, I had been making internal jokes about Saturday morning cartoons and Disney movies. This "Nightmare" certainly fit the stereotypical antagonist role, and everybody knows that the supervillain's favorite pastime is monologing. If I could get her down here and keep her talking, maybe I could trick her into revealing her endgame prematurely, or at least distract her until I could make a move.

It wasn't quite the work of Sun Tzu, but I had pulled through worse situations with much less of a plan. I shifted around slightly in a futile attempt at finding a more comfortable position. Eventually, I gave up and fell asleep to dream about wiping that smug bitch's grin off her face.

Author's Note:

Alright, here is a thing I wrote. I hope you guys like it. I apologize in advance for my slow writing schedule. Work, exams, and various end-of-the-year projects are all converging as teachers try desperately to get a few more grades in, so I won't be able to write with regularity for a while. I hope this will be able to tide you over for a couple more weeks. I'm also going to be trying to make each chapter a little longer. I feel like you guys deserve at least that much. See ya on the flip side.

Goddamn I'm never saying that again.