• Published 24th Dec 2014
  • 892 Views, 40 Comments

Friendship Still is Magic - ultronquake



Twilight Sparkle and her new found allies, Cloudchaser, Berry Punch, Lyra Heartstrings, Lotus Blossom and Derpy hooves must confront an ancient threat in the Everfree Forest. And, you know also do that thing the princess said about making friends.

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Fabulousity Overdrive

It had been about a solid hour since Luna began trying to retake control of her stolen body. The whole time repeating the phrase "Wiggle your front hoof." over and over. Focusing all her mind on the sensation of movement, trying to visualize all the muscles involved in said movement. At some point she had lost count of how long she had been trying when it finally happened, Nightmare Moon while busy pacing angrily across the room, stopped for less than a second to move her right hoof back and forth.

To the nightmare it was just a subconscious action, like scratching your nose or blinking to get the dust out of your eye, so she paid it no mind. But to Luna this was a major victory, she had just taken control, even if for the smallest thing. While she had been diligently working on this she had slacked off on watching over the ponies in the forest. Not that there had been anything interesting happening, after their escape from the grove things calmed down quickly.

"I wonder who these ponies are? They don't seem to be part of the guard, and they aren't very well prepared for fighting." Luna remarked to herself. A bit stranger than that was, why would the nightmare be trying to eliminate them with such ferocity? Still regardless of the circumstances Luna, like her sister was sworn to protect all the ponies of Equestria. Weather it be from tyrannical kings or gods of chaos Luna would do all she could. Which in her current position meant subverting the plans of the parasite occupying her body.

Speaking of plans it appeared the next plan was starting to take shape. The nightmare was moving ahead of the group and was now stalking a creature in the waters. From what she could see, he appeared to be a dragon of some sort, thou he didn't have wings like the variety that so often caused problems for Equestria. The tall slender drake was admiring his reflection in the still water's surface, running his clawed hands through his luxuriant orange hair.

Nightmare Moon was planning out her actions with her detached self, "If we control this dragon they would fall to it's fire in an instant," said the stalker. "Agreed, begin conditioning him for possession." said Nightmare Moon proper.

With that the cloud hovered over to the narcissistic serpent, "Hello handsome," it said in a sultry voice. Breaking his staring contest with himself the river dragon searched for the source of the compliment, it's not often you come across anyone capable of recognizing true beauty in a place like this. But in vain he searched, no discerning eye for beauty was to be found, a bit sullen he returned to his reflection.

"*Ahem* I said hello handsome," the cloud said, clearing it's nonexistent throat.

This time when he looked up he found a swirly purple cloud hovering inches from his face. "Would you be the one talking to Moi'." he said pointing a well manicured finger at his chin.

"Why yes, i just couldn't help but notice your stunning radiance, your perfectly coiffed hair, those luminescent scales and that gorgeous mustache," said the nightmare buttering up her mark.

"Oh do go on," said the river dragon.

"Yes in all my years I've seen thousands of beings and you my good sir are one of the best, i'd go so far as to say even number two." said the nightmare.

He was taken back, appalled even. "And who's good looks could even stand up to mine?" said the river dragon.

The cloud was smug, it knew it had him exactly where it wanted him. "Well it's funny you should ask, because the number one drop dead beauty I've ever seen just happens to be walking this way right now" said the nightmare. The dragon was looking anxious. "You know, just between you and me-" The nightmare formed an arm like limb and wrapped it around his shoulder, "-i think you should be number one."

"Is that so," He said with surprise.

"Yes indeed, and i know just how i could make it happen. With my help you could "Ruin" her good looks and then you would be the best," said the nightmare, wrapping itself further around the dragon.

"Ruin her looks why would i want something like that?" said the puzzled dragon.

The result was immediate, the nightmare which had been coiling around him preparing to bond with him and take over was stopped dead. In order to posses a thinking creature, they first need to be in a mental state where their defenses are weakened. Someone given over to rage or harboring deep jealousy make easy targets. Luna was easy, years of feeling unappreciated let the resentment grow, all it took was a well timed push in the wrong direction at the Summer Sun Celebration and she was too blinded to resist.

"What do you mean? You deserve to be the best, and if it means a bit of rearranging her face then why not?" said the nightmare trying to salvage this con.

"Oh i have no wan't to be the best, it's true i'm in love with my own image but i take much more delight in sharing my beauty with other beautiful people." said the dragon happily, the sadistic nature of the cloud's suggestions not registering.

The nightmare was dumbfounded, if it had a mouth it would be agape. "Despicable fool! If you will not serve my needs then i'll make you suffer," said the nightmare, and with a flick she tore off the right side of his mustache. He roared with pain, which soon turned to dramatic sobbing. The nightmare fed up with it's plans failing retreated further to the castle.

*****

For several minuets the six travelers could hear depressed sobbing echoing along the path they were on. The forest had already proven dangerous, so they were going to play it safe this time. Berry Punch was busy sharpening a short sword she kept in her saddle bag, Cloudchaser and Derpy Hooves were patrolling the skies looking for any sign of trouble, Lyra Heartstrings stealthed her way from tree to tree, pulling off amateurish rolls in the open areas.

With the others preoccupied that left Lotus Blossom and Twilight Sparkle walking together in the middle. Twilight was starting to get curious, she'd hardly spent any time with Lotus at the spa but she was one of the few ponies who volunteered to join her in the quest for the elements. "Um Lotus, i'm not meaning to sound rude, but why are you here?" asked Twilight.

"You mean in the forest? Because we are going to find Elements of Harmony," replied Lotus.

"That's not quite what i meant. I'm wondering why you're coming along with us in the first place. I mean i appreciate all the help i can get, i'm just curious about why," said Twilight.

Lotus gave a heavy sigh, "Why do i wan't to go in scary forest? For adventure! So many of my friends back home get to go on huge adventures, fighting monsters, exploring new frontiers. But i am stuck in spa every day, every pony i greet will go on to do so many great things, but me... i will be there sitting behind the counter," sadly said Lotus, her whole demeanor becoming melancholy.

"well if you don't like working there why don't you quit? You could go off and see the world," said Twilight.

"If only it were that simple, everypony back home depends on us. If we stopped sending home money then they wouldn't be able to eat, the spa is probably the best possible job me and Aloe could ask for. Like it or not were both stuck here in Ponyville, the problem for me is i don't like it," said Lotus.

Twilight tried thinking about what to say, the only "job" she'd ever had was being Princess Celestia's personal student, and she wouldn't trade that for the world. "Well i can't say i can relate to your situation that much but i do think what you and Aloe are doing is very noble. And i bet even the most well traveled adventurer wishes they could have a normal life every once in a while," said Twilight encouraging her friend.

"Thank you Twilight, i'll try and think about that when my mind starts to wander," said Lotus.

Soon enough the ponies came to the source of the sobbing that had been steadily growing louder. Directly in their pathway was a raging torrent of water, caused by the thrashing of a gigantic serpent. "Oh what a world, what a world, BWAAA!" exclaimed the dragon.

The six looked at each other and silently decided it should be Twilight to deal with this, the others pushed her into the forefront. "Sir? Is there something wrong?" Twilight inquired.

"Of course there's something wrong, here i was enjoying my bath when some noisy purple cloud comes by and rips my mustache off. Not only did it hurt like the dickens but now i'm hideous," he gave an exaggerated wave extenuating the lopsided facial hair.

"Oh dear that's just awful. You think you could let us pass we really need to get the castle up ahead," said Lyra blowing off his predicament.

"Well not if your going to be rude, and right now i'd much rather be back there throwing a fit. Don't look at me like that, it's a perfectly normal response when your once perfect face is scared beyond repair," said the dragon.

Lotus sighed heavily, she had to deal with ponies like him all the time, a chipped hoof or a mussed up mane and suddenly they can't function as a fully grown horse anymore. Speaking up Lotus said, "I could help you "Look Beautiful" again."

"How could you? My poor mustache is a goner," said the dragon.

"Well it is my job, i work in a spa so i work on things like this often. My only condition is you let us cross once i am finished, do we have a deal?" Lotus asked raising a hoof for a shake.

"Deal!" said the dragon, giving a thorough hand shake.

"Good, please lay your head down near the bank so i can start my work," said Lotus. He obeyed and with careful movement he laid himself down close to where Lotus was standing.

Lotus turned to face the others, "First of i'm needing something to cut with-" Berry volunteered her sharpened knife, "-good, and i'm also needing wax for the mustache, Cloudchaser and Derpy could you find bee's nest. Honey comb would make a good wax," The two pegasi nodded and flew off in search of a bees nest.

Turning her attention back to the dragon she decided she should get started, the sharp implement she held in her hoof glinted in the moon light. "W-w-what are y-you going to d-do with th-that?" He stammered.

"Not to worry, this is only for cutting of hair, not cutting dragon." Lotus said trying to reassure her new client.

"Do you have to cut 'it'? Can't you ponies, i don't know magic my mustache back?" asked the dragon.

Lotus turned to Twilight and raised an inquiring eyebrow. "Well spike has been wanting me to research a mustache spell for a while now but i haven't yet," Twilight said apologetically.

"Then yes i do have to cut 'it', don't worry i promise by the time i'm done you'll love your new look. If your'e not convinced just take a look at Twilight's tail, i cut it just this evening." said Lotus proud of her work.

He moved in for a close look, "Hmm nice length, textured cuts and it draws attention away from her weight problem. I like it," he said enthusiastically. Twilight on the other hand was not pleased by his comments, "Are you b*%$ing serious, why is everyone obsessed with my weight?!"

The dragon nervously said, "I was just complimenting your tail, and your weight is fine for a mare as far along in pregn-" He was cut off when he saw one of the returning pegasi wildly waving her arms signaling to stop. "I mean, you look fabulous, simply smashing."

As Lotus began her work she started chatting up the dragon as she normally does for her clients, a simple conversation often helps pass the time and put them at ease. "So, i don't think I've gotten your name yet," said Lotus.

"You can call me Steven, Steven Magnet," said Steven Magnet.

"What an odd name, no offence of course. I'm not sure I've ever heard a name like that before," remarked Lotus.

"Well to be honest it's not my real name, it's just what someone introduced me as when they misheard my real name. I thought it sounded much better than what i was born with so i kept it," explained Steven.

"Oh that's interesting, well my name is Lotus Blossom. I've not met many dragons before, tell me are you alone here in the forest?" inquired Lotus.

His face went dour. "I wonder how old he would be now," Steven said in an undertone.

"I didn't catch that," said Lotus.

"Oh nothing just my musings, no i'm all alone here in this forest. No one to keep me company anymore," said the saddened dragon.

Lotus gave the matter some thought, "I'm thinking this river flows all the way into Ponyville, if you wanted to you could take a swim upstream and visit us sometime. I'm certain everypony would love to meet you," said Lotus. As she talked she lopped off large strands of hair, some as long as her own tail.

"Hmm maybe i will someday, a change of scenery could be good for the soul," said Steven.

With the trimming work complete his face was more symmetrical now. "Did you get the bees wax?" asked Lotus of her companions.

"Yeah we found an abandoned nest over there, will this be enough?" said Derpy, holding in her arms was a massive amount of honey comb.

"Yes that should do," said Lotus. She began making a cradle of river rocks, "Steven, would you possibly be able to heat up these stones for me?"

"Ooh i get it, your going to melt the wax in that, very clever." He spouted out a small green flame, focusing it on the cradle. The stones began to glow slightly and the heat radiating off them could be felt several feet away. Once they were hot enough Lotus began tossing chucks of wax into the fabricated melting pot, soon she had a pool of hot wax ready for use.

"Alright come in close and we can finish," commanded Lotus. Steven complied, bringing his face in close. Lotus, taking a hoof full of wax began working her magic, manipulating the remainder of his mustache into a thin wavy curly-q. "Well take a look, tell me what you think," said Lotus, peeling off the hardened wax from her hooves.

Peering into the reflective water he saw his new look and was pleasantly surprised, "Ooh oooooh!!! This is simply divine! I don't know what i can do to thank you. You Lotus have a beautiful heart," he said with glee.

Lotus tapped her hoof on the ground and pointed at the river. "Oh right, crossing the river. Here hop on my back and i'll carry you all across," The six all climbed aboard, and he snaked his way across the shallow water. After dismounting they stopped to say goodbye. "Thank you Steven, i'm sure we'll meet again someday," said Twilight.

"You can count on it sister, no way am i letting this gorgeous face be unappreciated in this forest anymore," He happily waived the ponies off as they continued further down the pathway towards the castle. Only a short distance was left before they would meet their destiny, and change the course of history forever.

Author's Note:

Sorry this chapter took so long to come out, not allot of time to write lately.
I wonder what Nightmare Steven Magnet would look like?
Definitely putting a bit of myself in Lotus here, it stinks being stuck in a dull job when everyone around you is getting to do cool stuff.
Working from personal experience, if your mustache is uneven it's better to trim it short than leave it scraggly looking.