• Published 1st Apr 2014
  • 15,421 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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Interlude: For Fame and Glory

Prince Blueblood was pacing his quarters, troubled by what he had seen. While he doubted that the soon to be Prince Shining Armor, was trying seriously. He had to admit there was a certain validity to the Puppet Masters argument that he had held within the soldiers courtyard that earlier afternoon. The one sided beating that the villain claimed by Celestia to have been 'undergoing reforms' had trounced with only one other near double their number in guards, in a spectacle so remarkably one sided that the captain had more or less been force to bent an ear towards the villain and listen to what he was saying. Even now, he considered the puppet master as without regard to just how terrifying he, himself, was. Bringing into reality devices that most sane unicorns would balk at, without a horn none the less, and fighting off multiple of his aunt Tia's finest guardsmen in the kingdom like they were mere... He hated to say it, but had to agree, flies to the fly swatter.

His quarters were well decorated with critical acclaim for his efforts, not that anyone unversed in his history would be able to tell. A few scarce letters adorned in picture frames with seemingly innocuous conversation, an odd table weight, and trophy prize where words and wit had earned him a role in the highest rankings of Equestria's political court. As was his due as the 6th, soon to be 7th (with the incoming marriage of the Noble House Midnight to the Royal House Cadenza), in line for the throne. The fact that he was only behind his parents due to their seniority of age, was an understatement, however, as if political barbs came to bare, he had conventionally enough dirt on their... More unhealthy endeavors, to end their political careers as a whole. But where his political power was an asset, he never felt whole. Always empty. At least until he saw from that court yard balcony what the Puppet Master had shown him.

Hard Power. Something politics didn't have. To compare the two, would be like comparing a fist sized diamond to a tub full of champagne. As much as you could get drunk on the liquid, the diamond would still break the tub, and all it would mean is waste. It stirred a desire in him, like he hadn't known before. His position had often meant to be a farce. Power of a lake over the ponds of others, but with sharks always in the form of feminine persuasion trying to reach themselves into his bed, to take from him what he had earned through guile and wit. To think so many mares tried to pry that from him with what was between their legs was disgusting to him. He had more than one vengeful trip for the effort by throwing the scandalous letters back into their waiting husbands and current lovers and repeating their sultry tones with the many spells he had learnt to the bemusement of courts as a whole. But all of that had held not a candle to... That.

There laid his indecision, to desire more than what he was. He stood on the precipice of throwing away his political worth for joining the royal guard more than once but that old flame was unkindled as childish rebelliousness. However, to train under this new... Recruitment. Beneath the false paneling of the other false paneling of his rather well locked and enchanted desk he drew the help wanted poster back out. It read simply, 'Equestria's best Military Wanted, Extremely difficult Positions, Little Pay, Potential for extreme danger and combat, if you return alive, you'll receive honor and glory.' With smaller written instructions of where to acquire and submit recruitment forms on the bottom.

His Aunt Tia had made mention casually over their last dinner that this had become the same man who had easily trounced the royal guards personal unit for training and assignment. The name of the military unit was still pending, but with no other new recruitment forums available he had made a note that this was a brilliant way to get Equestrias most loyal and fanatical elements to the throne together under one military unit. The fact that several of Shining Armors own guardsmen had already applied was known to Prince Blueblood, as well as that the masked man himself had said it would be a 'hell of a time' had sent shivers down his spine. What was this creatures standard? What would he teach? The argument raged inside him all night, before he finally admitted that this was worth the risk. The worst this could do to him in court was set him back a peg for being 'fooled' by the agent of Discord. The fact that it took an agent of a chaos spirit to make him retreat would be a minimal loss to his honor if it wasn't to his liking. But in the grand scheme of things, the upper limit that this could benefit him was...

Well, he couldn't let an opportunity like this go to waste.


She just didn't know what went wrong. One second she was delivering postage like normal, the next half a dozen chains flew past her face alongside the regular light shows of magic and she was cratered into the ground with a broken package. The fact that her boss wouldn't listen to her, and that 'the magic she was seeing everywhere' wasn't apparently seeable by others had only added to the frustrations of the young pegasus. She had seen doctors about the condition, but people just blamed her wandering eye, and shrugged when they couldn't find anything else wrong with her. Ditzy Do grumbled her breathe as she searched for other job opportunities, but there just didn't seem to be any that she hadn't already tried in Ponyville. It wasn't until she found a flier someone was tossing into a trashbin did she find a job that wouldn't turn her down out of hoof. While it didn't look like it would pay much, the sort of job involved would keep her well fed, sheltered, and physically fit, if somewhat risky. But the last time Equestria had gone to war was well over a thousand years ago, and the major threats would likely be taken care of by Twilight Sparkle and her friends like the last few times.

She reached a hoof to tug at the chain, frustrated as always that her hoof just phased through it like it wasn't there. One day, she supposed she would find someone who actually knew what she was talking about, but that day wasn't likely to be today. Her forum had been accepted, surprisingly, and now she was post train ride in front of a set of doors within the royal castle itself. A Royal Guard sat at a table with a stack of applications on one side all kept in water proof baggies individually for some reason. Ponies had been waiting in an orderly line queue, having filled out and re-inserted their paperwork into the bags and carrying it with them as they waited on being called in the office. Curiously, no one ever came out of the doors, but given that the guard in question was stationed in front of a hallway, they could easily guess that whatever was being discussed shouldn't be shared with incoming interviews, lest they spoil the batch unfairly.

One or two of them had attempted to worm the guard in station to discussing things openly, but they seemed more absentminded, as if they were either day dreaming, or not really aware they were there. Curiously their entire body reeked of energy, but none that really resembled a living creature. Like a doll had been interposed with the face of another. Unfortunately, any such observations would of had to wait, as Ditzy had been getting a mild migraine from the sheer amount of chains all over the place. While the third floor was a lot less frequented, she had to wonder what the hay was going on in the throne room to warrant a small ocean of linked transparent metal. But given the last few ponies had just looked at her funny, she had remained quiet about the subject since.

"Next." The pony-soldier-doll, intoned, looking blankly ahead.

Looking to her left she realized she was the one next, and briskly getting up she nodded to the guard, who ignored her, and trotted in. The hallway was windowless, with only three waterfalls decorating one side. Also reeking of the same kind of weird energy that the man was, and the other end was a door. Given the fact that the packet she was carrying was in a waterproof bag, she was left with a feeling of confusion, especially when there was a trio of signs in front of them which had their text unfortunately blocked by more wandering chains. Left unable to read them, she sighed, trotting forward towards one pool of water at random, haphazarding a guess that would likely leave her another disaster to talk about in the future to come. She closed her eyes as she hit water and...

She came through completely dry... And more confusingly, the collar was gone. Confused, she looked around to her new surroundings, a unicorn sat at a desk, yet didn't. Transparent even more so than the previous man, but more than a ghost, to her left was a wall transparent as he was, and three others behind it. Walking straight up to in front of them she asked, "Hello? Um, do you want me to talk to the guy-who-isn't-really there?"

The smallest of the three started in surprise, as well as the largest of them, the one behind and off to the left of them looking over with mild amusement at their colleagues actions before the spell dropped and she could refocus on who she was looking at. With shock she noticed that she had just casually addressed Princess Luna, who looked a fair bit prettier than the newspapers made her out to be, the known super villain Puppet Master, whom was the most surprised of the trio. He didn't reek of maliciousness, but an odd warmth to him which was fairly confusing given the nature of the man. Then finally, she paused as she didn't recognize the third member, but she was fairly sure his beard was not supposed to be on fire, but he didn't look bothered by the fact. She would of been certain to have known about somepony who lived constantly on fire though, given one of her longest lasting jobs had been news and recent developments.

It was the Puppet Master who addressed her first, "Well done, on seeing through the illusion meant for testing unicorns, though it seems you walked into the wrong testing environment..."

She started, "Oh,um... I'm sorry, if this isn't the right one... Um... Which one was I supposed to enter?"

The Princess and Flamebeard as she came to mark the unicorn, looked towards the Puppet Master as he paused, before the Princess of the Night answered in turn, "It does seem she holds quite the talent for seeing magic, doesn't she?"

"Well, if you wouldn't mind, Miss...?" The masked villain asked, and Ditzy took the opportunity.

"Ditzy Do," she bowed, just as her mother had once taught her so long ago.

"Ditzy," the Puppet Master said aloud, and she noted without any sort of intonation of prejudice on the name. It was just a name to him, she realized a second later, as he spoke to her like she was just another individual rather than a walking disaster, "Your name will be noted as an exceptional case, though we need to do a fliers test, the Pegasus course was the waterfall on the far right side, this was the Unicorn test. However your remarkably rare talent for being able to... See Magic, is noted. I must ask, how did you come by this ability?"

"See Magic? I mean, I can tell where other ponies are casting their spells from, and see a lot of things no one else can, is that what it is? Magic?" She asked, curiously.

Flame Beard The Olden Stallion(as her self assigned name of him went), snorted, "If you can see this, then yes." as his horn lit up, and something that was there yet not, appeared in the air above him, shaped like a word.

"Phoenix." She repeated aloud, much to the genuine bemusement of the older flame bearded unicorn.

"We got one, though however unexpected."

"That's the first pegasus capable of seeing magic we've come across so far," Luna remarked, "We will need to discuss employment regardless if you find that you don't have a use for her, such talents are a rarity indeed."

Ditzy Do beamed, even after they sent her to the proper course. As it turned out the Pegasus course was also fairly easy, as it focused on technical knowledge in regards to manipulating the weather, and a demonstration in her ability to fly, which was made by far much easier without those stupid magic chains around her. Her mood was dampened somewhat as she recalled the chains on her recruiters. Surely they knew about it if they were able to remove her own chains. By the time she left, she was sorted out into an 'accepted room' and sworn to secrecy over the events that had happened there. Perhaps there was something more going on, but hey, given her 'marks' on her test, was mostly positive, with only a few negative marks on accuracy of a lightning cloud strike, she had near aced her tests. For once, she couldn't see what could possibly go wrong with today, if anything her luck was starting to play catch up with all her unlucky days now. However, her heart had a mild twinge of a reality check when she heard that she, and all the accepted applicants would be entering boot camp.

Well, given her luck, how bad could that go?

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