• Published 12th May 2014
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King Of Queens - ChroniclerOfFantasies



Herds. In a world inhabited by magical ponies, that's really not too surprising of a thing... unless that herd consists of four living, breathing goddesses and yourself.

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Candybutt

"Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it." -George Santayana

Pain. That was all I could think about. Pain, pain, and more pain. My head was screaming, my body was shouting, and my heart felt like it would beat right out of my chest. Everything hurt from my head to my hooves. I tried to think of something else, anything else. I noticed sounds like whispers in the background, steadily growing in volume and strength. I let out a grunt as I attempted to drone the pain out, focusing solely on the rising whispers.

I felt something hard lightly tap my shoulder, sending waves of torment coursing through my body. I let out a feral scream, the pain once more overtaking my senses. In an instant I lost control of my body. My limbs jerked and flailed about as I spasmed on the ground. Though my screaming continued it fell on my own deaf ears, my pain so great I could not hear my own uncontrolled wails for mercy.

It was but a split second, but the object of my pain induced hell quickly pulled away to leave a screaming and convulsing mess. With the assailant removed the pain subsided somewhat. Seconds ticked by ever so slowly, the fires of hell itself wrapped around me like an ungodly blanket.

The pain never let up, but to my luck it never got worse. It kept going at the same steady level. Over time I was able to adjust to the pain enough to the point where I could at least hear the whispers again. Concentrating on those once more I was able to catch a few of their words.

“… is broken. His.. broken and… my fault.” came a female voice. If I had the ability at that point in time, I’m sure I would have blushed. Her voice, though sad at the moment, was gentle and sweet and carried an almost otherworldy tune to it. It reminded me of those candy whistles I used to eat as a child.

“Milady… have to move him… lucky to be alive… our responsibility…” came another voice. This one belonged to a male and was deep and gruff. A sharp shock of pain bolted up my spine at just that moment, causing me to whimper like a whipped dog and pulling my attention back to the cause of my misery. I was surprised though to find the pain wasn’t nearly as bad as it had been not a few moments prior. No… that wasn’t right. The pain was still there, I just couldn’t feel it. It was like my body had been numbed by something. I could still feel what should have been the pain pulsating from my various limbs.

It was then that I noticed how cold I was, though freezing would be a more appropriate term. I was on the ground that much was for sure but it wasn’t the hard dirt I was used to. No, whatever I was on was much softer, and chilled my body to the core. My curiosity piqued, I threw caution to the wind and opened my eyes.

It was snow.

All around me there was snow everywhere. I seemed to be in a clearing surrounded by dense evergreen trees. The sky was dark and cloudy with no moon to be seen. I could hear more talking in the distance. The voices growing steadily stronger as I came more and more into consciousness.

“Look at this register number! He was an S-Class unicorn! The highest level one can be without ascending! And we just broke his horn! When he wakes up he’s going to be devastated!” said the pretty voice again. Wait… my horn was broken? Well I guess that explains the pain.

I’m sure that if it weren’t for all this pain, that news would be enough to send me to the ground in a heap of misery and sorrow. But it felt like I had gone skinny dipping in a volcano so at the moment I really couldn’t have cared less.

I tried moving my head to see who was talking. It was a horrible idea that, while it worked, elicited more screams out of me. I heard the sound of crunching snow as the others in the clearing moved closer. One of them walked right up next to me, lying their body in the snow and putting their face right in front of my own so they could look me directly in the eye.

And what I saw gave my system a huge shock.

There lying next to me, her face eye level with my own, was none other than Princess Mi Amore Cadenza of the Crystal Empire. But that wasn’t what shocked my system. Oh no. The thing that astounded me, the thing that made it impossible for me to look away, the metaphorical train wreck from which I could not tear my eyes… was her clothes. Princess Mi Amore Cadenza, also known as Princess Cadence, was dressed up as none other than the famous stallion, Santa Claus.

Looking behind her I noticed a small pile of debris from what appeared to be the wreckage of a sky carriage. A large burlap sack sat slightly away and had fallen over, its contents spilling out all over the ground. I strained my eyes to see better, and found that everything in the bag was a gift of some kind. Most of them looked like toys made for little fillies and colts. Looking to the right of the bag I saw two pegasi dressed in royal armor each wearing a pair of… reindeer antlers? Yes, there were reindeer antlers on their heads.

If I weren’t in so much pain, my hoof would be meeting my face at speeds incomprehensible to the average pony.

“Excuse me sir, are you alright?” she asked. Regardless of how ridiculous the situation was, I couldn’t help but admire that singsong voice of hers. I tried to give a reply, but all that came out was a muffled groan of pain.

“Can you understand me?” I tried again, with a little more success this time.

“Y-yes.” I watched as Cadence breathed a heavy sigh of relief. With a sad smile she continued to ask me questions.

“Can you tell me your-” before she could get another word out I felt a surge of pain more intense than all the others pass through my body. I briefly recall my hoof slamming into something as my body began to convulse once more. Pain wracked every part of my being, consuming all of my five senses and leaving me helplessly at it’s mercy. I couldn’t feel anything save for the lightning now arcing through my muscles. For a brief moment I tried to fight it. Tried to save myself from the torment and force the pain to die down. But no sooner had I made the attempt than another, even more intense surge rippled through me.

As my world slowly faded into darkness, I was vaguely aware of the tears streaming down my face.

***

I awoke to a very rhythmic series of beeps. Constant and high pitched yet not jarringly so. My body felt light and my head even lighter as I tried to get a grasp of my surroundings. The first thing that caught my eye were the machines all around me. Medical equipment I realized. Looking down I found myself to be in a hospital gown with an IV attached to my left fore leg. Looking around I was surprised to find that I wasn’t in just some random clinic.

The room I was in was large, very large, and had hospital beds lined up on both walls. The walls, floor and ceiling were all comprised of luminescent blue crystal. A lush red carpet went down the middle of the room, serving as a kind of walkway in between the beds. The crystal that made up the floor was smoother and more translucent than that of the rooms walls and ceiling. Looking down one could see through at least ten feet of the floor. Inside of the crystal were long glowing strands that seemed almost ethereal in nature, like someone had cut a piece off the aurora borealis and sealed it in the ground, it’s beauty forever encased in stone.

Light streamed in through the massive glass windows, meaning at the very least it was morning now. I wondered if it was the morning of the next day, or if I had actually been out for quite some time. Judging from the rumble I got from my stomach, I’d say the latter.

“Oh! You’re awake!” I heard somepony call. It was definitely a female voice, but it was deep. It had a pretty heavy accent on it too, something of a mix between militaristic and a southern drawl. I turned my head to my right to find myself suddenly accompanied by a young white crystal pony with a braided red mane and a playful, almost sultry smile. I tried to speak, but found my throat was far too dry for that.

“W-water.” I croaked and she nodded her head in understanding. Leaving my side for just a moment before returning with a small glass. Instinctively I reached out with my magic to try and grab it, knitting my brow in confusion as nothing happened. Suddenly the memories of before I passed out came rushing back to me and I placed a hoof on my head.

Yup… it was broken alright.

The nurse looked at me with a mixture of sympathy and apprehension as I gave her a broken smile. No doubt she was worried I was going to have some kind of breakdown over the loss of my horn. To be honest I wasn’t that concerned. It was gone and there was nothing I can do about it save for picking up the pieces and moving on. What happens happens. No big deal.

I reached out with my hooves to grab the cup, only to fumble and cause it to fall to the ground shattering as the glass met the floor. The nurse looked at me sympathetically before cleaning up the mess and fetching a new glass. This time she was kind enough to hold it to my mouth so I could drink. Now that my throat didn’t feel like sandpaper I could finally talk properly.

“Thank you.”

“No problem. Now I need to ask ya some questions is that alright?” I nodded my head. They never found out who I was so it’s no surprise they’d have something or other to ask me. “I guess we’ll start with the easiest question first. What’s yer name?”

“Glorious Radiance.”

“Glorious… Radiance…” she said scribbling it on a clipboard she had been holding in her mouth. “And how old are you Mr. Radiance?”

“Please just call me Rade. And I’m twenty three.”

“Twenty three years old. Alright, can ya tell me where ya live?” I opened my mouth to answer, but shut it quickly again. I looked down thinking hard. Where DID I live? After a few seconds of silence I responded.

“I… I don’t remember.” Her eyes widened a bit at that, and she seemed to grow a bit worried.

“All right, well that’s fine. A little memory loss is common when somepony’s horn breaks. How about yer family? Is there anypony we can contact?” Once again I opened my mouth to answer, but I couldn’t find an answer to give.

“I… I don’t remember.” Now the nurse REALLY looked worried, which didn’t make me feel any better at all.

“Friends perhaps?”

I shook my head.

“Yer job?”

No clue.

“Do ya even remember if ya had any pets?”

Nope. Nothing.

“Oh boy. Look do ya remember anything OTHER than your name and age? Anything at all?” I looked down and strained my mind trying my very best to remember any minute detail of my life at all, but I came up blank every single time. Occasionally it would feel like something was trying to fight it’s way to the forefront of my mind but I would always get a sudden splitting headache and the memory would slip from my grasp. I let out a defeated sigh as I answered her question.

“No. No I don’t. I’m sorry…”

“Um… sorry for what, exactly?” she looked at me confused and to be honest, all I could do was return her look. I wasn’t quite sure myself.

“I… I don’t know. It jus felt like the right thing to say.” She frowned a little at that.

“Well ya have nothing to feel sorry for. Now you stay right there, I have to go speak with somepony for a moment. I’ll be right back.”

“Alright. Thank you miss?”

“Willow. My name is Willow.”

“Thank you miss Willow.”

She turned back to look at me, a smirk on her face. “Just Willow to you, boy.” I smiled as I watched her walk away. After losing focus in my eyes for a moment I realized I was staring right at her cutie mark which was a syringe and scalpel crossed to make an ‘X’.

“Keep starin at my flank like that and I’ll start charging ya for bits by the minute!” she suddenly called out from the doorway before turning out of sight. I was glad there was nopony else in the room as the blush on my face was really something fierce. It didn’t help I could hear her chuckling from down the hall.

A pretty decent amount of time passed after that. With nothing else to do I laid my head back and went to sleep.

***

“Rade? Rade wake up!” I kicked my hooves, flailing as I was flipped out of bed and onto the dirt floor. Groaning I lifted my head out from between the strands of hay that got tangled up in my mane. I looked to my right to see a young golden pegasus filly with long white hair tied in a ponytail staring at me with an unamused glare. “Come now thou distemperate bum! We hath work to do!”

“Leaveth me high-lone, Ambrosia!” I whined, my voice a much higher pitch than normal given my apparent age.

“Nay! I have let thou rest his weary eyes too long already! Thy unicorn brethren hath already risen the sun, no thanks to thee!” She yelled, jabbing a hoof into my side. Next thing I knew I had a magic suppressing ring on my horn. I tried to run away but it was no use. The filly was pulling me to our washroom. “Now come! I hath prepar’d a bath for thee and I expect thou to be ready in due time!”

“I hath no desire to do so! I hath taken one already this moon, is that not good enough? And get this ring off mine mazzard! I hate it when I can’t use magic!”

“If I take that ring off thou will cast a spell and vanish like the wind only to reappear in a location unbeknownst to me!”

“Do not be envious of mine prodigious talents!”

“I don’t care what ye art! Thou art taking a bath! Thy master Clover said thou hast to bathe at least twice a moon! Do not force my hoof and make me get in with thou!”

“The tub is too small to hold us both!”

“That is the point! Now hurry up!” Grumbling I got up into the wooden tub and did as I was told. Ambrosia meant the world to me, but sometimes I just couldn’t stand her. There were times I wish I could bail on her and go somewhere, anywhere, else. But I could never do that. Ambrosia meant too much to me and being alone in this harsh world was a death sentence.

When I was finally clean I stepped out of the tub and shook myself off. I considered using the towel, but it was the only cloth item we had and I wanted to use it sparingly. I walked out of the washroom and into the rest of our little house. It wasn’t much, but it was something. Plus we had a whole three rooms. One day though I’d have more than this. A proper home like the nobles, with a tiled roof, glass windows and full wooden doors. We were still starting out though, so it would be quite a while until then, so for now I was happy with what we had. Thatched roof, big holes in the wall for ‘windows’, and curtains made of woven wheat to separate the different parts of the house.

Ambrosia was sitting next to the cauldron stirring the contents and adding spices I had gathered in the Everfree. Today’s meal was going to be pretty decent for once. She turned to look at me and smiled. I returned it before sitting down next to her. She pulled the ladle out of the cauldron with her wing as I levitated two bowls towards us. Slowly she poured the soupy mixture into both of our bowls and we ate in peaceful silence.

Ambrosia moved over too me, lying her head on my shoulder as we took in the last bites of our food. Setting the bowls down I looked into the fire. I was happy, content. Everything was how I wanted it to be. Closing my eyes in this simple bliss I leaned into Ambrosia as she began to hum a tune. That humming soon turned to soft singing as I gave her a peck behind her ear.

You are my sunshine
My only sunshine
You make me happy
When skies are gray
You never know dear
How much I love you
Please don't take
My sunshine away

She sang for a while, the same words and tune playing over and over again, much to my pleasure, before her song finally came to an end. We sat in silence for a while, before Ambrosia scooted even closer into me and spoke. “It is time. Thou must go.”

I closed my eyes as a solemn sigh left my lips. I looked down at her, gently nuzzling her head as I took in her scent. It was sweet yet packed a little punch, like honey mixed with cinnamon. I didn’t want to go, not now, not yet. I wasn’t ready and it was too early. “Must I truly?” I asked.

“Yes. Clover shant wait forever. Go. I will be here when thou returns on the morrow.”

I was staring into Ambrosia’s eyes when suddenly everything changed. Green fire consumed our home in the whole of a moment. With the suppression ring having been removed after my bath, I got up and began casting spells to put the fire out, but it was to no avail. I turned back to Ambrosia so that I could grab her and leave, only to find her completely consumed by the flames.

Though her body burned she did not die. As her flesh sizzled and popped her golden eyes bore straight into my soul. Opening what was left of her mouth she let loose a horrid scream. I covered my ears in an attempt to drown out the noise.

“YOU PROMISED!” She wailed. “YOU PROMISED YOU WOULD PROTECT US!” I looked around once again to find myself in a completely different location. I knew this place. It was the throne room… but to what palace? It wasn’t Canterlot, nor was it the crystal empire, yet I knew this place all the same, like it was a second home… no… not a second home. It WAS home. I was standing in its center, the glowing green crystal walls of the once great hall of royalty crumbling around me. I could not see the light of the sun or moon shining through the window, for my heart knew that this kingdom had no sky.

I looked around to find myself surrounded by ponies engulfed in emerald flames just like Ambrosia. They were all faces I recognized. Each one was a friend, a neighbor, a colleague. Each one was the face of somepony I was supposed to protect. They yelled at me, screeched at me, demanding to know where I was in their time of need. Begging for my help and accusing me of abandoning them. I tried to deny their claims. I tried to tell them the truth. I fought my hardest, I DID! But she was too strong! I couldn’t stop her, only weaken her! I did the very best that I could!

But your best was not enough!

I whirled around following the sound of the voice. There upon the throne sat the cause of my misfortunes. There sat my greatest enemy, the mare who I swore I would kill with my dying breath! The one thing that kept me going through everything that had happened to me!

***

“Nirvana!” I shouted. My eyes snapped open as I was pulled back to consciousness. My breathing was heavy and quick as my eyes darted around the room. Realization dawned on me. A dream. It had only been a dream. Closing my eyes I took a deep breath to calm my nerves.

“Mr. Radiance?” My heart skipped a beat. There it was again, that beautiful singsong voice I’d heard in the clearing. If that voice was here then…

“Princess?” I mumbled, opening my eyes. Sure enough there she was. Her Santa outfit was long gone, replaced instead by the royal regalia I knew so well. I looked to her face and found that her left eye was puffy and black. Oh… so that’s what my hoof slammed into. As my mind processed my location and the memories came rushing back to me, I felt a little more at ease.

“Yes. I am Princess Mi Amore Cadenza, but please, just call me Cadence. Are you alright Mr. Radiance?”

I chuckled. “Ay, Princess. I’m just fine. Twas a nightmare, nothing more. Thither's nay need worry over me. What of thou, however? Thou seem'd quite distraught yesterday. Art thou sure thou're alright? If thou worry of ill will against thee over mine horn, I assure thee I am content, and doth not blame thee in the slightest. Though I would wot how the nonce came to pass, if thou would be so kind.”

As I spoke I watched as the princesses head slowly began to back away from me, her eyes widening in surprise until they were the size of dinner plates. When I was finished speaking I originally thought nothing of it, until I realized that everything I had said was in old Equestrian. VERY old Equestrian. Then I too widened my eyes in surprise.

“Um… what did you say?”

I shook my head to clear away the thoughts of confusion over my own actions and responded to her question. “Sorry, I just had a bad dream and everypony was speaking in old equestrian in it. I guess it bled through to the real world. I said I’m fine, that I just had a nightmare, and that if you’re worried about breaking my horn then don’t be because I’m not upset. Though I would like to know how it happened.”

I watched her smile as she let out a large sigh of relief and her body slumped a bit. Apparently that had been really eating away at her. “Thank you. I’m so sorry. It was all an accident. Because of my recklessness you’ve lost not only your horn but your memories as well… I’m sorry.”

“It’s fine, Cadence.”

“If you say so.” She placed a hoof to her head as her body slumped even further. She was tired, unbearably so, and though she was doing a good job at hiding it I could somehow see through her façade. Her wings were drooping, she wore heavy make up to hide her baggy eyes, her hoof was on her head so often that she had to have some kind of constant, perhaps even chronic, headache. This mare was stressed beyond belief and some foreign instinct told me that if she didn’t get some relaxation in soon, she was going to snap. “I was so scared you were going to be mad at me and get the courts and everything involved. Not that you don’t have the right too or anything! I’m just saying that that would have created a lot of problems and-”

“And you’re having a hard enough time running a country on your own?” She took a step back in surprise. Not that I could blame her. I knew very well what had happened and I had just been rather blunt about it. I didn’t even think before I said it, I just… did. I guess I’m rather rude. I’m not sure how to feel about that.

“Well that’s not what I was going to say-”

“But it is what you were thinking, right?” Wow. There I go again.

“I… yes. Yes it is. Running the empire was difficult even with Shining at my side, but at least having him around made it tolerable. Now that he’s gone-”

“You not only have a difficult time running the empire, but you have to deal with the fact that you simply just don’t WANT to run it as you’d much rather stay in bed and cry all night long?” Wow. Just… wow. Apparently my brain doesn’t want to register the fact that she’s a goddess and can incinerate me with her mind.

She stared at me wide eyed. “Again, that’s not what I was going to say but… yes. Yes that’s true. Also could you please stop doing that? You sound like aunt Celestia’s old advisor. The one that knew her so well she-”

“Could finish all of her sentences?” I said. Cadences gaze gave me with a highly disturbed look and the more I thought about it the more I realized just how creepy what I was doing was. “Right… sorry about that.”

“No, no. It’s fine. I just… how are you doing that exactly?”

I laughed. “Well that is what I’m paid for, Lady Platinum.”

“What?”

“What?”

Cadence sat on her haunches and began rubbing her temples with her hooves. Eyes closed she said “Okay, let’s… let’s just start over.” She opened her eyes and walked to the side of my bed, holding out her hoof. “Hello, I’m Princess Mi Amore Cadenza. Ruler of the Crystal Empire and wife of…” I stared at her awkwardly as the words caught in her throat. She let out a defeated sigh before putting her hoof back on the ground. Her voice suddenly grew deeper and got an angrier tone as she spoke next. “Oh screw it! I can’t handle this…”

I felt something click inside of my head at that moment. This… this was a moment I had been through before. It was a situation I knew how to handle. In fact, I felt like I’d been handling this type of thing for years. I looked over to Cadence, placing my right hoof on her shoulder to get her attention.

“Cadence, please, relax. There’s no need for formalities here. I understand your trying to put on the princess mask in order to deal with a civilian issue and prevent a possible scandal, but as you can plainly see there’s nothing to worry about. I implore you to speak freely. Or at least as freely as you are willing to be.”

Cadance stared at me for a few moments, her face contorted into a bit of a pout as she eyed me up and down. She was looking for a catch of some kind, or some stupid thing nobles did to try and butter her up. She let out a sigh, looking away from me and crossing her fore hooves as she spoke. “Look, I’m sure you’re a good guy and all, but I just recently lost my husband. I’m not looking for anypony right now.”

“Um… what?” I asked thoroughly confused.

“I said I’m not looking for anypony right now. I’m not interested.”

“Not interested… in what exactly?”

She face hoofed. “In you!”

I looked at her surprised. That was rather insulting! “Well if I’m so uninteresting then why are you talking to me?” I asked with a clearly offended tone.

“Because I’m trying to be forward and not get your hopes up!”

“And what’s wrong with having high hopes?” Yeesh that sounds like something a tyrant would say! It’s good for ponies to dream! If they didn’t, little fillies and colts would never get their cutie marks!

“Because high hopes lead to delusions of grandeur and that leads to creepy stalkers!” My mouth dropped. Was this princess seriously accusing me of being a stalker? I felt a little bit of anger bubble up in me, something I quickly realized I wasn’t used to. That’s a serious blow to my pride and I was NOT going to take that sitting down!

“Why would I want to stalk you?! Your flanks too big and your wings haven’t even been preened properly!” And there goes her jaw dropping to the ground. Take that you two bit princess!

“At least I don’t have a broken horn!”

“You’re the one that broke it! In fact, you probably busted it with that fat rear of yours!” I heard some snickering from out in the hallway. I took a brief moment to look over the princesses head to find Willow and another crystal pony standing in the doorway with their hooves covering their mouths.

“I do NOT have a fat butt!”

“Yes you do Candy!”

“Candy?!”

“Yeah! Candy! Sounds like Cadence and is probably the reason Luna could see your flank from the moon!”

“AT LEAST I’M NOT A BLANK FLANK!” I was a blank flank? Whatever I could worry about that later. I had insults to dish out.

“YOU WERE LATE TO YOUR OWN WEDDING!”

“I WAS KIDNAPPED!”

“KIDNAPPED?! HOW DO YOU KIDNAP AN ALICORN?!”

“SHE HAD AN ENTIRE ARMY!”

“YOU SAW A GIANT MASS OF STRANGE BLACK BUGS OF DEATH AND THE THOUGHT OF RUNNING DIDN’T EVEN CROSS YOUR MIND?!”

“THEY WERE IN DISGUISE!”

“AS WHAT?!”

“AS… AS… as griffons

“THAT’S EVEN WORSE!”

“WELL WHAT WOULD YOU HAVE DONE?!”

“TELEPORTED OUT!”

“YOU HAVE A BROKEN HORN!”

“YEAH! COURTESY OF YOUR FAT REAR!”

“WHY YOU LITTLE-! BY CELESTIA I’M GOING TO DESTROY YOU!”

“BRING IT ON CANDYBUTT!”

And that is how I met the princess of love.

Author's Note:

Sunbutt! Moonbutt! Sparklebutt! Meet CANDYBUTT!

Now I know what a lot of you are going to say: Hey! This guys personality is kinda bipolar isn't it? I mean he was so calm in the last chapter and then this happens isn't that weird? Well yes it is, but there's a reason for that. Give it time and it will make sense... eventually.

Also I know a lot of you are looking at this chapter and going "Wow... this is a lot more serious than the other one was." Well yeah, for now it is. But there will be bouts of hilariousness throughout this story as this story is first and foremost, a romantic comedy. It's just I have to lay that ground work for important stuff later on so yeah. They'll be somewhat serious for the next few chapters until I can get to the real slice of life comedy stuff I want to eventually get to.

Also given the nature of this story, herds will play a big role in general, so if there are any herd ships you want to see, let me know. You can leave it in the comments or even PM me if you want. It's up to you.

Also Nurse Willow in this story is based off a character from this incredibly awesome zombie fic written by Sorren which you can find here--> Undead Equestria by Sorren