• Published 26th Nov 2011
  • 5,416 Views, 164 Comments

My Little Pony: Prime - Brony Tom


A sinister poison corrupts ponies and twists them into horrid mockeries of their old selves.

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4: Precursor

Part 4


“All right, Gentleponies, what's our situation?” inquired the Day Princess, undercurrents of boredom born of deja vu spiking her voice.

She sat in a bland, gray room with ancient stone walls and a large round table in the middle. Around the table sat several ponies in military dress, as well as a few in formal suits.

One of the generals, an old, graying mare that Celestia was fond of, stood up to address the Council.

“Princess, the Changelings have stationed large numbers of troops all along the border; considering the earlier raid, we fear that they may be preparing for war. The raid itself may have been a probe of our defenses, to test our readiness.” The general paused to let her assessment sink in before continuing. “However, it is also a possibility that this is just the work of a lone band of rogue changeling pirates, with no connection whatsoever to the amassing of troops at the Changelings' border. We really have no way of knowing for certain without contacting Queen Chrysalis. Your thinking, Princess?”

Celestia looked around the room almost absentmindedly, taking her time in collecting her thoughts. Her silence unsettled the other ponies in the room, suffusing the meeting with an air of nervousness, before, at last, she spoke.

“If the Changelings are truly massing for an attack, then our best course of action would be to have the borders well-secured. If they aren't going to attack and we reinforce the borders, then we simply send them an emissary explaining ourselves, perhaps risking a real war. I think the safety of Equestria is worth the minor risk.”

“So you DO think that the Changelings are attacking?” demanded one of the suited stallions.

“I don't know for certain, but I think that we should be prepared for that contingency, Minister,” rebuked the Princess. Celestia was about to continue when a loud, clumsy knocking sound rattled one of the doors to the chamber. The guards leaped to battle positions, protectively encircling the Day Princess. There was another sound of hooves banging on the door, and the wood door swung crazily open; in stumbled Luna, her flowing star-mane frazzled and her movement clumsy.

“Hay, Celly!” slurred the Night Princess. “Sorry I'm a little *hic* late, I was having some drinks with a couple of friends.”

Celestia stared, mouth agape.

Luna- cider- oh, no... thought the Day Princess. As if I didn't already have enough on my hooves...

“Luna, you need to just settle down a bit,” instructed Celestia, putting a wing around her younger sister as she began guiding Luna out of the room. “Let me help you get back to your room so you can take a nice little nap.”

“Awww, but Celly, I wanted to sky bacon with muffinsauce-” Luna collapsed against her sister halfway through her sentence.

“Luna!” cried Celestia. The Day Princess supported her unconscious sister, who was mumbling incoherently.

“Fa... son... hee hee... mare... dark... s-stop... moon...” whispered the blue alicorn unconsciously.

“All of you, please wait a moment while I take care of my sister,” Celestia commanded of the ponies in the room. They nodded their assent, some with stern faces and a couple with suppressed laughter. The white alicorn teleported herself and her sister to the dark, midnight blue bedchambers of the Night Princess. Celestia gently laid her sister onto the huge bed, then pulled the blankets over her.

“What happened, Luna?” the white mare asked herself as much as her sister. “I doubt that a little bit of salt could make you pass out...” Still with her suspicions, Celestia placed several warding spells around the room and on her sister and teleported back down to the council chambers.

-----

Trixie was resplendent in her flowing, starry cape and her fetching wizard’s hat. She strutted into Ponyville, ponies stopping to gawk at her as she passed the all-too-familiar shops and houses that had haunted her dreams ever since that fateful day. Ponies shrank back from her, creating a convenient path for her to follow through the town. The blue bubble containing Fluttershy followed closely behind.

Out of nowhere, a scooter burst through the makeshift boundary of ponies, headed directly for Trixie; before she or the riders of the scooter could react, the scooter and the fillies riding it crashed into Trixie’s legs, felling the magician. The scooter careened off to the side of the corridor of ponies, dumping the fillies onto the ground.

“Watch where you’re going, foals!” snapped the Great and Powerful Trixie. The showmare got up as if to come over and wreak some terrible vengeance on the offending party, her anger sparking like blue fire in her eyes. She towered over the quivering fillies, a grim, vengeful look in her glowing blue eyes.

Trixie was quivering with rage, her rational thought almost completely buried beneath the unquenchable blue fire of vengeance. She grinned maliciously in her mind as she thought of how best to punish these foals. Then, in the back of her consciousness, a nagging voice sprouted up. That’s just it- these are little fillies! said the voice. You can’t hurt a filly! It’s wrong!

No! They shouldn’t have bothered the Great and Powerful Trixie! whispered the blue fire with a hiss, stressing the words “Great” and “Powerful”. The foals deserve to be punished for angering you!

Trixie was torn between inexplicable, bottomless fury and rational, reserved frustration. The overwhelming force of the urge to strike them was like a sheer cliff of which she was on the precipice, and the edge was constantly eroding beneath her hooves. She struggled backwards mentally, avoiding the fall, but there was a part of her that wanted to let go, to give in. That whispering voice drifted up from the empty, blue chasm below, a siren’s song to the ears of the mare.

You know what you must do to Twilight Sparkle... did she not cause you anger? These fillies have made you angry; how are they any different? Destroy them, use the power that you have gained, come down here with us...


After an agonizing, interminable silence, Trixie’s horn began to glow, surrounding the fillies with a blue aura.

“Don’t you lay a hoof on my sister!” shouted Applejack as she galloped at top speed towards the blue interloper.

The blue field around the fillies intensified, lifting them up into the air; Apple Bloom let out a little squeak, when the three Crusaders found their hooves placed upon solid ground. Surprised that they were not being scolded or punished, Scootaloo walked right up to Trixie and looked at her curiously.

“Aren’t you gonna punish us or tell us off or something?”

“The Great and Powerful Trixie is going to give you exactly what you deserve,” said the showmare through gritted teeth. “Free admission to her comeback show!” Trixie continued, skillfully concealing her inner conflict behind a false mask. “Trixie will be watching for you!” The showmare accentuated her speech with several blue fireworks, then began trotting off towards the Ponyville Library.

Behind the blue mare, Applejack was hugging her sister. All around, ponies slowly began to resume their previous activities, confused looks abounding.

“Trixie didn’t hurt ya none, did she Apple-” asked Applejack.

“Can I go see that pony’s show, big sis? Pleasepleaseplease? She gave us three free admission, you have to let us go, big sis!” enthused Apple Bloom.

“Ya’ll ain’t goin’ to that mare’s show, ya hear me? There’s somethin’ that ain’t right about her.”

“But siiiiiiiiiis, what if our cutie marks-

“But nothin’, missy. I don’t want you younguns gettin’ in no trouble,” interrupted the farmer. “That’s final, Apple Bloom.” Applejack gave her sister a stern look before trotting off to square away her apple cart.

-----

“Alright, so you can fly here after I do this-”

“But wouldn’t it be at least 37% cooler if we did the corkscrew loop first?”

“Well, maybe, if you were going for a more acrobatic display.”

“I thought we were!”

“Well, I thought-”

“Darn it, Flare, we haven’t gotten anywhere with our routine! This would be so much easier if we could just go outside and actually map it out up there,” complained the rainbow-maned pegasus.

Rainbow Dash was slouched on the edge of the hospital bed, a notepad covered in scribbled diagrams lying before her. Flare was perched on the opposite end, imprisoned there by the blue devil that was his teammate. Golden rays of sunlight shone through the sole open window, giving tantalizing glimpses at the open blue sky above.

Firework winced at Rainbow’s statement.

“I’m sorry, I’m healing as fast as I can, especially since you trapped me in this white prison of boredom, O Queen of Lameness,” teased the red pegasus. Dash took the bait.

“Hey! We wouldn’t even be stuck in here if it weren’t for you falling during the middle of our competition!” protested the cyan mare. The moment she said it, she regretted it; the wind fell out of Flare’s sails, and his ears folded back in a mixture of embarassment and sadness.

“I, uh, didn’t mean it like that, Flare,” blurted Dash. “I’m sure that... you, uh... I mean, that kind of mistake happens to the best of us, even me sometimes. Yeah.”

The red pony sighed.

“Rainbow, that was no mistake. I... need to explain some things,” Firework said slowly, not looking directly at Dash. "Just so we're on the same page as a team."

“Like what?” asked the mare, nervousness creeping into her voice. “It can’t be that bad, can it?” She looked at him for confirmation, but his grimace didn’t help her confidence.

-----

Luna watched the events unfolding as through a fog, slowing her mind and making her groggy, as well as making her whole body feel uncomfortable, on edge. She saw herself trotting hopefully out of the castle, wearing a dark cloak with a hood. Luna’s face bore an adventurous grin, and she moved with anticipatory confidence. The phantasmal version of the blue mare smiled as she remembered the thoughts that had been running through her mind, although... that fog, it obscured her memory somewhat, blurring it. Frustrated by her exhaustion, Luna continued to watch her memories play out.

She distinctly remembered feeling particularly bold and carefree, like she was on top of the world, unstoppable; that emotion cut its way through the fog like a knife. She strolled nonchalantly through the streets of Canterlot, hidden underneath her cloak and a magical disguising spell. One particular establishment caught her eye, so the Princess entered quietly and confidently. It was a nightclub, a rather low-end business, with neon lights flashing every color of the rainbow in hypnotic patterns, matching the bass beat of the blaring music. In the middle of the dim room, ponies thronged and rippled in a large mosh-pit like an ocean, and all around the periphery were tables filled with ponies at varying levels of drunkenness. Luna didn’t care, she was enjoying the feeling of invulnerability that she was having, despite her uneasy stomach.

Luna trotted slowly up to the bar, garnering a few glances from some of the less intoxicated patrons. At the counter, the bartender looked her up and down, then smiled heartily.

“Well, ya look mighty fine, lass. What can I get for ya?”

“I want your strongest cider,” said Luna boldly. The bar-colt grinned.

“Aye aye, missy. Comin’ right up!” he promised. The jovial pony turned around and started mixing liquids together into a mug. Luna glanced around the club as she waited, observing the other ponies in the room. The DJ, a white unicorn with a striped, spiky blue mane, was pumping out music with a steady, catchy beat. Luna couldn’t help but tap a hoof in sync with the rhythm.

“Hey there, Blue,” said a green-pelted colt as he slid into a seat next to her at the bar. He seemed like a typical ‘punk’, a knit hat pulled roughly over a long, unruly mane. His voice was only slightly tinged with the slurring effects of salt. “Mind if I sit down?” The Night Princess giggled. That feeling of soaring elation was pulsing in her veins, even as the queasiness in her stomach intensified.

All of this ghost-Luna observed rather dully, the mind-fog distancing her from the recollection, except for that addictive feeling...

Things started to blur together. She was talking with Green, sipping her drink. Everything was fantastic, the neon lights and the music throbbing in tandem. Green asked her if she wanted to hang out at his house with a few friends...

Luna remembered only distantly how something had clouded her mind, diverted her attention from what she was doing. She was fairly certain that it was not the salt. Luna was having a hard time seeing the memories through this blasted blue fog, but she caught warped glimpses of an apartment, then a messy bedroom, then something about Celly, but she was so distracted, so unfocused...

As the recent memory faded into the mist, the Moon Princess wandered about aimlessly within the haze of her mind, blue fog swirling silently around her.

-----

Applejack galloped quickly back to her apple stand, hoping to pack up quickly and round up her friends. That no-good showmare was up to something, she just knew it. She had to stop Trixie before anypony got hurt. The farmer arrived at her stand and expertly packed it up for transport. As she was about to finish up, AJ noticed a solitary bit sitting on the wood.

“Jus' one? I don’t remember sellin’ any apples before...” mused the farmer. She began sifting through the apples in her cart, counting up how many were there. One was missing.

It clicked in Applejack’s mind.

That gray mare! The one that was annoyin’ as all get-out! She was the only one that was around, and hay, she’s probably the only one who’d do something like this! Celestia-darn it, if I find that filly I’m gonna...

AJ took a deep breath and expelled the angry thoughts from her mind. Focusing on her mission, the mare quickly finished putting the cart in order, then raced off to fetch Rarity, Pinkie, Rainbow Dash and Twilight.

Which one do I find first? Pinkie is probably closest, and if I get her to help me find the others, that would be fastest. Then again, Twi’s pretty close too, and she can teleport and all... Pinkie is Pinkie, though... that’s probably better than teleporting. Pinkie it is, then.

The orange farmpony galloped to Sugarcube Corner as fast as she could.

-----


The flashy showmare in the cape was a magnet for the ponies’ attention in the small square. Pedestrians trotting through the small, colorful streets of Ponyville stared as Trixie set up the stage for her show; or rather, as she created the stage. Her horn shone with a hot, searing blue glow, and out from the ground a round, raised platform rose, at least ten pony-lengths in diameter and about half of a pony in height. The gargantuan pedestal sat ominously in one of Ponyville’s squares, within a stone’s throw of the Ponyville Library. Around the periphery of the square sat a few small stores, mainly grocer shops specializing in one particular vegetable or fruit.

Trixie stood in the center of the ponies, reveling in the attention she so deserved. The blue mare carved some fancy designs all around the base of the stage, some of which depicted two ponies doing battle, others of epic heroes, and still more that were in the shape of fantastic explosions.

The spring of fury in Trixie’s mind was bubbling in anticipation of the vengeance she was about to wreak upon her nemesis; Twilight would finally know what she had done to Trixie, and then Trixie would destroy her.

That nagging voice sprang up in her thoughts again. Killing ponies is wrong, no matter what they’ve done to you! You don’t need to kill Twilight, just outclass her and then everypony will know you’re the Great and-

No! That scum deserves it for what she did to you! Do you not remember how it was after that Ursa Minor? How you couldn’t go anywhere without ponies laughing behind your back? How you had nothing but the cape on your back and the hat on your head? Remember that, make Twilight feel what you felt... and then, snuff her out like a candle.

Trixie didn’t resist as the blue fog washed over her, causing the world around her to fade away.

-----

Twilight was curled up in one of the chairs in the library, reading through a book on psychology. It was quite intriguing, and Twilight thoroughly enjoyed it, even going so far as to take notes on a small notepad she had with her. She was just starting into the effects of long-term isolation on a pony’s mind when a violent knocking began rattling the door.
Startled out of her trance, Twilight glanced apprehensively at the door. Unsure as to why anypony would be banging on her door, Twilight feared that somepony might have been injured. Rainbow Dash again, maybe? It wouldn’t surprise Twilight, since Rainbow was always doing all sorts of daredevil stunts. Gulping, the purple unicorn got up and trotted over to the door; before she could open it, though, it was thrust open, surrounded by a harsh, neon-blue glow.

Along with the door’s abrupt motion came a quick rush of air and an all-too familiar blue pony in a cape. The intruding unicorn bore a haughty, leering grin, her blue eyes practically shining with malicious intent. A pit the size of Manehattan formed in Twilight’s stomach and her body froze. Trixie smiled even more smugly at Twilight’s shock.

“It’s been a while, Twilight,” said the blue mare. Somehow, Twilight got the feeling that this was no social call between friends.

“T-Trixie! Hi! I wasn’t expecting any visitors-”

“No, of course you weren’t,” interrupted the intruder. She began lazily moving about in the library like she owned it, inspecting it disdainfully with an upturned snout. “Especially not from the greatest and most powerful magician in all of Equestria.”

“Uh, Trixie-”

"Now, Twilight, don’t interrupt,” chided the blue mare. “It’s not polite.” Trixie paused her speech while still circling around the library, emitting an air of malice into the large library foyer. Twilight stood motionless in the middle of the room, like a swimmer in a shark tank.

“What’s this all about, Trixie?” demanded the purple unicorn, a nervous edge undercutting her poise.

“Twilight Sparkle,” declared the blue showpony, obviously enjoying the effect her presence was having. “You have no idea what you cost the Great and Powerful Trixie. She’s come to show you just that.”

“Trixie, you didn’t have to run away, you know. If you wanted to talk, all you had to do was say so-”

“NO! Trixie knows exactly the kind of lies that you spout, just because you’re afraid of what her revenge will be.” The blue wizard pony whirled on Twilight, barely contained rage sparking in her eyes.

“What? That’s not it at all, Trixie. I’m not afraid of any kind of ‘revenge’-”

“Then prove it to the Great and Powerful Trixie! Show all of Ponyville who really is the greatest and most powerful magician; join Trixie in her new show, if you aren’t afraid.” At this point, Trixie was almost nose-to-nose with Twilight; for an instant, Twilight thought that she saw something fog-like swirling in Trixie’s eyes. Not really in her eyes, more like behind her eyes, in her mind. The purple unicorn was reminded of the blue poison from her dream, causing a cold chill to run down her spine. Putting that thought aside, Twilight took a step back, trying to regain her composure.

“Trixie, if I understand you correctly, I don’t think we need to do this-”

“You aren’t getting out of this, Sparkle,” spat Trixie. “I’ve waited too long for this.”

“Trixie, I don’t want to do this to you again,” the purple unicorn said, concern etched on her face. That look only served to turn Trixie’s face flush with rage.

“I’ve gotten more powerful than you can possibly imagine, foal!” shouted Trixie. With an impossibly dramatic flourish and a flash of blue light, Trixie whipped aside her cape, revealing its hidden contents; the blue mare rose into the air on blue, feathery wings. She flashed a smug smile filled with daggers upon seeing Twilight’s jaw hit the floor.

“They’re nice, aren’t they, Twilight,” gloated the blue alicorn. “This is only a taste of what Trixie has gained since last time.”

“N-not p-p-possible...” stuttered Twilight, her eyes still as wide as dinner plates. “How...?”

“Trade secret, unless you can best me. Now, Trixie wants your humiliation to be public, so come willingly, or she will be forced to drag you herself.”

“We can talk this over, Trixie,” said Twilight calmly, soothingly. In truth, she was afraid of what Trixie might do to get her revenge; one innocent pony caught in the crossfire would be one too many, and Twilight wasn’t exactly confident about Trixie’s sanity at this point... A pony had to try, didn’t they?

Trixie marched menacingly towards the librarian, her wings flared, driving the unicorn back a few steps. Twilight felt her flank bump against a bookshelf; she had backed herself into a wall.

“The time for talking is over, Sparkle. We fight. Now.”