• Published 16th Apr 2014
  • 1,741 Views, 35 Comments

Horizon - Nagmeister



Five kerbals go on an interstellar mission and run into a planet of colorful ponies.

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Operation

Hanald walked through the castle to the courtyard. He was still somewhat stunned by Jebediah's episode; one minute he'd been freaking out over what had happened, next he was solemnly ordering people around. Hanald didn't dwell on this for too long, however; he found the door to the courtyard and walked through. He was surprised to see the crowd of ponies that had gathered; some seemed angry, many were confused, but most looked bored.

“Hey!” one shouted. “Where's the princess?”

Hanald ignored him and made his way through the crowd to the lander. He hit a button on the side and the cargo door swung open. He looked inside and found the medical kit. Unfortunately, it was buried beneath a pile of food boxes. He chucked the food out of the lander and retrieved the kit. He then carefully replaced the food before closing the door and turning towards the door.

The sea of ponies did not move for him this time. He wondered why so many of them looked scared of him, then he looked at the medical pack. It was a dull grey box, with a red cross on the front. It had spindly mechanical arms coming out of the side and looked almost like a spider, and it had a light that looked like an open mouth. It also had a keypad and screen, but those were hidden from view by a small metal flap. He hoisted the kit up and tried to approach the crowd to get back to the courtyard, but was pushed back. “Where's the princess?” said a gruff voice. Looking behind him, Hanald saw a gray stallion at least twice his weight. Hanald felt over himself, looking for his trusty knife. “Crap!” he said aloud. “I left it in the room!”

“I won't ask again, creature. Where's the princess?”

Hanald sighed and said, “She's in the castle, looking over a wounded guest. And yes, I need to get there or else it'll die, and no you can't come. Now let me through!”

Some of the ponies opened a narrow corridor, and he sprinted down it. Unfortunately, his explanation didn't appease the stallion. “After 'im!” said he. Hanald barely managed to get the door closed and locked before the crowd banged against it. He dashed down the halls to the operations room, where everyone else was waiting. Jebediah had bandaged some of the wounds, a purple unicorn was helping with the rest. “Who's this?” he asked.

Nobody paid any attention, so he shrugged and put down the medical kit. Jebediah immediately went over to it and opened the metal flap before starting to type.

>BOOT

Booting up...

Initiating file MEDICOMP.EXE

Getting Sensory Data...

No Data Detected

Please Plug In To Subject

Jebediah took some of the various plugs and tubes from the machine and put them at specific locations on the body that were highlighted by the purple unicorn.

>GET_DATA

Getting Sensory Data...

Heartbeat : 87BPM

Blood Pressure: 157/96

Blood Amount: 4.1L

Blood Type: Unknown

Int. Temp: 3C

Jebediah swore under his breath. He pressed a button on the machine and a three-dimensional diagram of the changeling appeared, along with a warning underneath.

“Body diagram and internal organ locations may not be 100% correct.”

Jebediah hit another button and the diagram turned into a hologram above the machine. All the ponies except the purple unicorn stared in surprise at the slowly rotating hologram. Jebediah took a pair of goggles out from the box and put them on his head, then plugged them in to the machine.

The inside of the body was dark. Blood leaked from the walls of the wound. “Twilight, block the blood flow inside the wound!” he said. The bleeding stopped, and he maneuvered through the wound. Apparently, the bullet had ricocheted off the internal walls a few times before coming to rest in a kidney. Jebediah deftly navigated the tunnel through the body as a warning popped up. “Warning: Blood level less than 3.5L. Blood Transfusion may be necessary.” Jebediah swore under his breath as the camera-tipped arm went down the third ricochet tunnel. There, at the end, was the metal slug. He navigated the arm to it and activated the magnetic tip. There was a slight ripping sound as the bullet was removed. “Twilight, what's going on? It's starting to bleed again!” he said.

“It's taking too much energy to sustain it!” he heard her say. “I can't keep the spell going much longer, so work quickly!”

Jebediah sighed and went to another arm. “I don't have the time to navigate the bullet through the body, so time to do the next best thing.” He put the arm next to the chitin behind which the other arm had come to rest and drilled. Soon, the bullet and arm were exposed. He dropped the bullet with the first arm and picked it up with the second, then dropped it into a glass of water. He then quickly and somewhat recklessly pulled the first arm out of the body and folded it back into the body for later cleaning. He went to another arm, this one with a roll of stem cells. He plastered the inside of the wound with them, and already it began to heal. He then put a small amount on the chitin and released control.

All he could say was, “Whew.” He stood for a few seconds before asking to the group, “Does anyone have some sterile changeling blood? He's below two and a half liters, and we need to get more into his system or else he'll asphyxiate.”

A yellow pegasus that identified herself as Fluttershy spoke up. “umm... mister, I think I have some in my house, if you don't mind using it...”

“Go get it now!” said Jeb.

“eep...”

Jebediah sighed. “Anyone willing to go get it? I need someone to do it as fast as possible!”

“I can do it for you, mister!” said a cyan pegasus that Hanald confirmed to be Rainbow Dash.

“Oh, it's you.” said Hanald.

“Shut up,” he turned and said to Hanald, and then added, “Go get it now!” at Rainbow Dash.

The cyan pegasus took off in a rainbow trail, leaving behind a shattered window.

The changeling lay unmoving in the operation bed as the group of kerbals and ponies stood around it. They all watched intently, to see if it would make it. The steady beeping of the heart monitor and the gentle rise and fall of its chest were the only things that still marked it as alive. Suddenly, an electric whirring was heard outside the door, and someone knocked.

“Who goes there?” shouted Luna.

The door opened slightly, and two kerbals slid in.

“What are you doing here?” asked Jeb.

“A 'friend' was helpful enough to take our rover for us, and we decided to walk here.”

“Who... oh.” was all Jeb could say as he saw Twilight grinning. “Thanks.”

“Now, what do we have here?” said Bill. “It looks like a bullet wound. Multiple fractures in three legs, a chipped horn, and holes in the wings. Low heartbeat. Dropping blood pressure. 2.1L blood. Entry wound, but no exit wound. Bloody robotic arms on medical kit. Bullet in water solution. I see that you performed a minor surgery,” he said to Jeb as he looked at the table and changeling. “Blood transplant required. If blood restored to full, estimated time to recovery four weeks. If blood only partly restored, four months. If no transfusion, death imminent. Someone get blood for this thing!”

Another window broke as Rainbow Dash returned carrying a rather large bottle of blood. “Got it! Now, who–” She was cut off as Bill grabbed the packet from her mouth and emptied it into a tank with a pipe leading to a syringe. He took the syringe and stuck it into a shoulder of the creature, then flipped a switch. Blood flowed through the tube and into the changeling, and its eyes slowly grew brighter and its coat more colorful. Eventually, the tank was emptied.

>GET_BLOOD_AMT

Blood 4.8L. Rising.

“Whew,” said Bill. “That was close.”

The princesses stared in awe at what the Kerbals had just done. They had taken a changeling that was almost certain to die and not only saved it, but returned it to its original health. A pink pony suddenly burst out of the ceiling. “Who...?” asked Jeb, but was cut off.

“Time to throw a 'You just shot and then saved a changeling' party!” she said before running off into the castle.

“Well. That happened.”

Outside the castle, under the protection of an invisibility spell, Queen Chrysalis had watched the operation. She saw the grey metal arms invade her subject and remove some sort of metal fragment after drilling through its skin. She watched as Rainbow Dash streaked by her with a bottle of blood, and as that blood was dumped into the tank and the needle stuck into the changeling. She watched as the tank slowly emptied and the changeling was refilled. She watched as her changeling was brought back from the dead. She decided it would be best to retrieve him, so she came in through the broken window. Unfortunately for her, the invisibility spell does not protect against electronic detection.

The camera on the box suddenly showed a new pony; this one tall and black, with a greenish saddle on it. In fact, it looked quite similar to the changeling. “Hey guys, look at this,” said Jeb. A small group of ponies gathered around the screen and saw the changeling queen. Twilight gasped, the Kerbals were confused, and Celestia and Luna both wore solemn glances. A bolt of energy shot out from Celestia's horn and took down the invisibility spell.

“Chysalis!” she shouted.

“Don't mind me, I'm just here for my subject.” replied the changeling queen.

“No. He stays here. I won't let you–”

“Stop.” said Jeb. “Let her take her subject and leave.” He turned to the queen. “I am truly sorry for what I did to your subject, and I hope that this does not create any lasting animosity between us.”

After the changeling queen magically levitated her subject and left, Jeb asked, “Who was that?”

“The queen of the Changelings. She and her people invaded our lands only a year ago.”

“...Oh. Well, we have other things to do. Have a nice day, Princess,” said Jeb as he gathered his companions and walked out.

In the castle's room, Jebediah removed the rifle from underneath the carpet. He inspected it, seeing its every detail. He looked down the barrel, inspected the bolt, and felt along the stock. Satisfied with the results, he put it into a locker. Then, he went over to the window to watch the sun set. Brilliant shades of red, yellow, and orange coated the sky. “You just don't get sunsets like this back on Kerbin, do you?” asked a voice. Jebediah, startled, turned and saw Twilight standing there. “It's beautiful, isn't it?”

Jebediah relaxed and sat down, and Twilight did the same. They sat together for a good ten minutes before Twilight had to go. “I'll see you tomorrow, then,” she said as she exited the room. Jebediah mulled over the thoughts in his head, mainly why she had come here. “She's right though. The sunsets here are beautiful.” He slowly drifted off to sleep as the last rays of daylight disappeared.

Author's Note:

Two in one day!
As always, have fun reading and don't be afraid to point out errors!