• Published 1st Apr 2014
  • 14,934 Views, 1,427 Comments

Puppets of Tragedy - Iridescence T Wind

We all know the story, human from earth goes to Equestria from buying a mystical prop from a mysterious unnamed salesman to attend Comicon. But what you didn't expect was the prop to be a puppeteers crafting kit.

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Masking To Stay...

Author's Note:

Bear with me, not used to doing sudden perspective shifts away from a 1st person narrative, so if the perspective seems a bit all over the place, I apologize in advance. I hope its not as jarring and that I'm overthinking it, but was trying to write 2nd person for most of this. We will return to first person in the next chapter after this.

Today was the day everything came crashing down on that smug kids head. That was the prerogative today at least. Given that the idiot had allowed a member of the Elements of Harmony to escape, it was going to be bobbin for apples in a barrel without water for capturing all his colleagues. At least that was what Shining Armor, Captain of Equestrias most elite and finest guards had to think about the situation. Already the guards were climbing up the mountain the Puppet Master had hidden his base away on. With Pegasai patrolling the perimeter in the sky with eyes sharp as hawks. Unicorns bringing out all their fancy tricks, a myriad of magical arrays that would make escape impossible short of a master like Star Swirl The Bearded. Then, even speaking of the said flaming spire of brilliance and genius himself was tagging along up the mountain. The fiery radiance that was said to have been granted with his arrival at Lunas own power alone. That was truly astonishing in his book. The elderly stallion was marching at a pace that set his own soldiers to shame, all the while making it look as if effortless.

With their combined might, this mission would, and should be a breeze. Hopefully as something to makeup for his wounded pride. Too long had that damned grinning masked menace had made a fool of him. After both the train and the museum, it was time for the Puppet Master to end up on the losing streak. With this he ordered his men onward to secure the base, their second set of trump cards however, kept a worse pace than his guards. which was to be expected unfortunately. Half of them were, after all, not meant for athletic efforts of mountain climbing.

"Wow, we really are going the exact same route aren't we?" the beautiful mare, one of the top fashionistas in the country asked, "Did he really make his lair in the cave Fluttershy scared away the dragon of?"

"The one who threatened to nap for a hundred years and cover Equestria in its snoring-smoke?" the master of sugar, both in and outside the body asked. Of them she was the only one who showed Star Swirl levels of energy, possibly even beyond that as she was positively skipping up the mountain, "Yeah its the same route."

"Hold, on. Wasn't there like, a metric field load of treasure up there?" Applejack asked, looking more like she was putting pieces together than even considering the effort it took to climb such a steep incline. Shining Armor was beginning to rethink his soldiers training regiment with how easy so many civilians were making it look like.

"Well, technically speaking that would make sense that the treasure was still there, after all the dragon didn't appear to have any giant reinforced bags to carry all that treasure with him when he left, and he did leave in an awful hurry after Fluttershy scared him into behaving."

The mare in question, was dubious to Shining Armor. She seemed more afraid of her own shadow than the sort to even try to scare away an adult dragon. If it wasn't for his own sisters testimony he would of inquired further. Normally he would join in the socialites, since he was curious after all just who his sister made friends with. But rigid training in the guard kept him on duty. Unfortunately for Twilight, he had to smirk a little, this caused problems for the once introverted bookworm that was his sister.

"What I want to know, is since when did Twilight have a brother?" the only other athletic member of Twilights band of friends, who was albeit cheating by flying, had pointedly store the question back in with a glare that could nail down a train track, "Let alone that she didn't even tell us he was also in the royal guard. Details Twilight!" The bookworm, that was his sister merely seemed to stammer but it was quiet enough that he didn't catch the follow up conversation.

Rainbow Dash was here twofold for the reason that she was the one who found out the location of the villains lair, as well as being a member of the element of Harmony. Though he had to note that she was very moody the entire time they were traveling together. Something must of happened between them recently, probably something that caused Rainbow to end up in the Puppet Masters lair in the first place. But so far she had been mostly passive-aggressive and then almost truly hostile towards her own group of friends, which was ruining any chance of his own first impression of the Mare of Loyalty. Who true to her element, stuck around loyal as any guard, but really seemed to hate being within even line of sight to Twilight, let alone any of her normal friends. But given their luck, it'd likely be a song, a sob or a life threatening danger that returned them to the status quo, probably with some sappy comment about how they should never have done X or that they should of done Y.

Shaking his head clear, Shining Armor continued the advance, directing guards left and right, only pausing as Rainbow Dash investigated and found the hole she had crawled out of to freedom. The end had been blocked with a large rock, but that didn't dissuade a royal guardsmen. One order, and a guard specialized in cutting magic down the hole later, and a path was cleared... Quickly the guardsmen rushed down, one after the other, to take up as much space as possible. Though Rainbow had cut ahead of him, he had prepared a shield spell just in case of an ambush. But all was quiet.

"Alright his entire bunker should be right in here!" The Rainbow mare declared, as they breached the final few feet of the cramped confines, but Shining Armors confidence was shot as he came in after her, Rainbows own words echoing his thoughts, "What? Where did it go?"

They were standing in a roughly hewn cave, ones that lacked any semblance of life save from the unnatural cuts in the stone itself. This can't be it, shining thought to himself. After all, how does one dismantle an entire underground facility in the matter of less than an hour. Any deconstruction and transportation would of been easily sighted by the watchmares he had posted as soon as he had received word about this base. At most, since Rainbows departure Puppet Masters forces would of had less than half an hour to pack up and leave. There should at least be the structure behind, let alone dozens of folk trapped here with no other escape. He sent Pegasai both up and down the sudden pit that marked the central piece of the structure, but he knew it was in vain. It took immense willpower not to take off and hurl his helmet to the ground, and curse out the Puppet Master for once again foiling any attempts to deliver the crowns justice upon the foul villains he had held.

Meanwhile, by a city near the Sea, Yoko took off a mask with the amber eye, glad she had been given the time to evacuate not just everyone and their stuff, but all of her friends stuff as well. Already news reports had come in about Xanders capture, which was worrying, and she mildly cursed herself that she hadn't reacted in time when her friend was under attack. But perhaps there was still a way to save him. Or at the very least grant him a way that he could get out. At worst, she could stage a rescue, but that would blow all their covers and her grimdark team of war veterans weren't exactly used to using the non-lethal approach that Xander stated as part of his guidelines for combat on this world. The only mask she had of his was GLaDOS, and while useful for maintaining and building defensive structures and position, was near useless as a non-lethal measure by itself.

In the regards to setting up a new base, it was proving crude but useful, though to be honest it was a miracle that they even had the mask at all. They had to work together to decouple an elevator and when that refused to open for sole pegasus Cass in the group, it had taken a carefully aimed series of bolter rounds to blast open the door before Cass could retrieve the mask and bring it back down to Yoko. Xander had been clever, but he hadn't allowed for stairs or an emergency exit/entrance in the event of his own collapse, and she suspected if she hadn't been there or played the Co-Op with her friend, the entire group would likely of been facing a swarm of guardsmen around now. The hole that had been carved out seemingly by a laser was too small for most of her own allies to fit through, not to mention that if they did get out that way if they could even returned. So with mask in hand she took the next logical step and became temporarily the psychopathic A.I. and proceeded to portal everybody, their possessions, then Xander's possessions and treasure horde to the city that was being built for the Sirens. To be precise to a little bit of woods right on the outskirts above the beach. Then came the tricky part, of lowering herself into an open portal, and withdrawing the rest of the structure so that nothing would be left behind for study. But it turned out most of the structure had been formed from magic, and with conservation of energy in mind she had channeled far more than she should just transferring the energy into a new structure.

It was... Sloppy, admittedly, she knew she never had an eye for proper design when it came to mixing living conditions with defensible structures. Xander had been more of the architect type, and an utter terror for any Dungeon Master who let him construct his own base back in their old world. But it would hold until she could mount a rescue. About thirty minutes later and she could of sworn that she heard the distant rage of a screaming stallion in frustration, but chalked it to her imagination before getting things properly together. What else of Xanders toys remained?

Lets see... a lot of his proof of concept weaponry and tools were still intact, albeit the chest itself had suffered a severe dent in one corner when it landed from a less than precise landing after portaling. Various eras of Starwars Lightsabers constructed from PCP pipe and foam, mostly useless since she was unsure if her friend would have the energy, let alone the skill to wield a lightsaber, let alone a sword in combat. Taking out and putting aside the energy swords, she found a collection of Gimmick Weapons from Kingdom hearts 2 Organization XIII and even a robe that matched them. She snorted, as she saw he also had built one for a stockier frame, likely herself. Aw, Xandy-Candy had wanted them to match. Her snort really did melt into an aw, as she then dug out a half completed suit of power armor, the kind she instantly recognizing to have belonged to one of her own characters back in the day. The fact that Xander had even remembered the photo she had badly drawn and made it at least partially reality was a fair bit touching. But as useful as that seemed, Xander did say incomplete props as well as heavily damaged ones couldn't even begin to be of use beyond acting as their foam counterparts normally did.

She kept digging, eventually sorting out the trunk sized chests contents out and moving onto a second before she pieced together everything she could think would be possibly useful for Canterlot Castle. In the end she had to go with a spare deck of cards, which she did note was a brand new deck in comparison to the one her friend normally used. But then again he did say he went through decks of Luxords signature weapon at an alarming rate, so it would be strange if he didn't keep a deck or two spare. If all else it was something he was familiar with by now. Aside from that, she had found a mask of Sauron from lord of the rings among his possessions, but deemed it useless for a stealth extrication. But kept it aside for later. She would find it funny to scare someone from another realm with that mask, should the occasion arise for it. There was also would be the good lesson for her friend to improve his own raw talent than rely on such an overkill mask, considering the rate he used them even more than the cards. Moving on she had already chosen a utility, but now as the place for something in the supportive role and offensive role. For the former, she placed the Black Robe in. Perhaps Xander could emulate the nobodies ability to travel between realms with it and do a short distance teleport, but if that failed the black clothes would still be of use in blending into the shadows.

As for the offensive role, she debated long and hard but found a proper solution buried behind the layers of props she had extricated. Most of the ones that Xander had used didn't have a proper spare yet, he hadn't been a big fan of duplicating his work unless needed, and the ones he had left had mostly lethal intents, or were meant for projects that he had yet to explain properly. Parts in other words. In the end she had to reach for a Lightsaber, trusting her friends judgement, and trying to find a simple easy to conceal one she instead found something so much better, and that drove a smile to her face, "Oh gods, you were always were a massive fan of the 2D animated 2003 version of him weren't you?" She quietly teased, "Nerrrddddd." under her breath. Now she just had to figure out a way to get these to him without him getting beat up and the props confiscated.

It was time to mount a rescue mission...

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