• Published 1st Oct 2014
  • 3,594 Views, 435 Comments

Story Shuffle - FanOfMostEverything

Thirty-one one-shots inspired by thirty-one random Magic cards.

  • ...

Mental Health Day

Hello, Celestia! How are you doing?

Yes, yes. Glare, shout my name, all very droll. Now—

Honestly, young lady, is that how you greet all your friends? I didn't know hoofshakes had been replaced by gouts of stellar plasma, but what do I know?

"Imprisoned?" You call a five-star tropical resort a prison? Well, remind me to book time in the Canterlot dungeons.

Well, yes, that's true, but I was hoping you'd actually enjoy your stay rather than determine the boundaries of the pocket universe. A strange concept, I know, but—

Oh, for crying out loud. Look, I came by because I don't have much to do at the moment, and I thought I'd answer a few of your questions out of the goodness of my hearts. But if you can't be civil for ten seconds, then I'll just excuse myself.

There. Was that really so hard? Now, I'm not going to do something so gauche as give you a set number of questions, then count every vaguely interrogative statement against the quota. Ask as many as you want. I'll answer them until I get bored, so I suggest you keep them interesting.

Oh, Celestia. Really? How long have we known each other? I thought by now you'd have learned that for me, the answer to "Why?" is always "Why not?" Except when it isn't, and this is one of those times, so well done!

Now, as for the actual answer, you needed it. The Tirek incident shook us all up, I'm not afraid to admit that, but you? You still haven't let it go. You were working yourself to the bone trying to ensure that there won't be a next time, and even if there is, that you'll have more warning than whatever your dreams deign to show you. I could see you flagging, Celestia. I could see just how heavy hung the head that wore the crown, and I wasn't the only one. Luna agreed with me, however grudgingly, as did Twilight.

Let's stop and think about that one for a moment. Twilight Sparkle thinks you're working too hard. If that isn't a warning sign, I don't know what is.

Ah, another good question. I care because, believe it or not, I don't actually have an interest in ruling again. Meanwhile, you could be seen as doing an adequate job of running the country by certain metrics, none of which I personally use. As such, while I could do a much better job than you, I don't actually want to, and so I have no wish to see you burn yourself out.

What am I really after? Well, if you must know, my cruel, sinister, true plan is to give you a chance to pull the Califoalnia redwood out of your rump and relax.

Celestia, stop jerking your knees at me and think for a second. Why do you think I didn't tuck you away in a far less pleasant pocket universe the moment I stopped being a rest stop for pigeons?

No. It was because I wanted to see your face as I made my triumphant return. I wanted to watch you as everything you spent millennia to build got torn down in an afternoon.

For the record? This is why I find you so aggravating anymore. The moment I step outside of the horribly limited space you allow me, the only way you'll listen to me is if I play the villain. Honestly, it was all I could do not to give myself a mustache to twirl just then.

In any case, that's why and what. I believe we're both familiar with the who, when, and where. Anything else?

Very good, the one H to go with the five W's. We'll make a journalist of you yet! And it was a well-chosen "how" to boot. If you'd asked how I did this, any answer more elaborate than "Chaos magic" would make your poor little equine brain go supernova. I rather doubt anypony would appreciate that.

But how did I get the others to go along with this? Again, excellent choice. You see, it wasn't just Moonbutt, Magicpants, and me who were concerned for you. No, even dear Fluttershy was worried, and your replacement regent was entirely her idea.

Yes, Fluttershy. Twilight may allegedly be the Princess of Friendship, but it's Fluttershy who has the most friends in Ponyville. Granted, many of those friends aren't ponies themselves, but given that I'm in that particular subset, it would be terribly hypocritical of me to hold that against her.

Now, I admit I may have gossiped a bit, but it didn't take much. Just assurance that yes, this would be harmless; yes, it would be temporary; and yes, it wasn't part of a scheme to reclaim the throne that is rightfully mine but that I frankly don't want anymore. Cross my hearts and hope to fall, make myself symmetrical.

What? Even I know better than to break a Pinkie Promise. I'm chaotic, not crazy.

In any case, once I made it clear that this would be perfectly safe for everyone involved, she made her suggestion, and I loved it. I have to say, one of the more surprising bonuses of friendship is how much inspiration friends can provide. I've gotten more than a dozen ideas just from Twilight forbidding me from doing things that I'd never even considered.

Yes, but I didn't do it lightly. I made sure to interview him first, and I think his views on defense spending and tax policy are exactly what this country needs. Besides, Twilight and Luna are handling most of the affairs of state behind the scenes, and Fluttershy's taking some liberties when translating his edicts.

And I'm a draconequus and you're an alicorn. Are you going somewhere with this?

Well! "Monster" is such an offensive term. I prefer "chimeric-Equestrian." Really, Celestia, I thought you were more progressive than that.

And here we go again with the plasma. Honestly, if you're going to be such a brat about it, then I'll spoil the other surprise. You see, I dilated time a bit when crafting this lovely little getaway. You're experiencing it about seven times faster than Equestria is.

Yes, that's right. Manny Roar may only be king for a day, but you have a week's vacation. Now for the love of yourself, go enjoy it!

Author's Note:

I went with "First-person phone call" for two reasons:
1. Stylistic experimentation
2. Preserving the twist. Over the course of this conversation, Celestia said "manticore" so many times that it stopped sounding like a word.

Thanks go to Hasbro for giving us Emmanuel Roar of the Everfree Roars.

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