• Published 4th Feb 2015
  • 4,733 Views, 145 Comments

Keep Calm and Chaos On - Azure129

Discord calls out Celestia on the details of his initial reform. He has some interesting demands, which she gives into (but not without a few challenges of her own.) By the time Discord’s final reform comes, they're as close as two friends can be.

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Midquel 5: The One with the Tea Party (and French Maid's Outfits!)

“Luna, what are you doing?” Celestia asked, an eyebrow raised, as she approached her sister on this fine mid in-morning. The sun princess had just been walking down a hall of her castle and suddenly had spotted Luna standing before the dining room entrance and clearly (if oddly) peeking through a crack between the room’s closed doors. “It’s almost noon, shouldn’t you be in bed?”

Luna turned to Celestia and raised a hoof to her mouth. “Shh…” she advised. Then she smiled and gestured for Celestia to approach.

Growing even more curious, Celestia came up close to her sister and lowered her voice to a whisper. “Luna, what is it?”

Luna likewise whispered to her sister. “Celestia, do you recall how Discord said that he was going to spend today with Fluttershy?”

Celestia nodded. “Yes, of course, he mentioned that over breakfast.”

Luna’s grin grew. “Well, apparently he meant he was going to spend the day with her here.”

“Oh.” Celestia raised an eyebrow again. “And?”

And…they’re having a tea party together in the dining room right now.” The moon princess’s cheeky grin grew to its fullest extent.

Celestia just smiled and shrugged at this news. “So they’re having a tea party in the dining room. Luna, I don’t see what the…” Then Celestia blinked and her eyes widened. “Discord and Fluttershy are having a…tea party?” She tilted her head to the side.

Luna nodded, her eyes hazing in a mischievous way. “And in case you were wondering, sister, it is an event just as adorable as it sounds. Oh you were right, Celestia, he really must have embraced friendship truly. Just look.” Luna gestured with her head toward the crack between the doors.

Celestia came forward and looked inside.

In the dining room, Discord had removed the long table usually there and instead had set up a low, small round table with two chairs. Fluttershy sat in one chair and Discord sat across from her in the other. On the table between them were various pastries resting upon pink and white dishware which matched the teapot that Fluttershy now had in hoof. And in front of Discord and Fluttershy sat a cup and a saucer each. Fluttershy had just finished refilling their cups now, and she set the teapot back on its cozy at the center of the table.

“Thank you, dear Fluttershy,” Discord remarked with a grin as he reclined back in his chair a little and raised his teacup. “I do love this blend of green tea you brought.”

Fluttershy smiled. “You’re welcome, Discord.” She took up her own cup to sip.

Discord lowered his cup and took up a pastry with his tail to eat. “So, now, you were telling me what’s new and saying something about Rainbow Falls and the Equestria Games…”

Fluttershy nodded, smiling more. “Oh, um, yes. Our team qualified to compete in the games at the Crystal Empire. So I’m looking forward to that even if I am a little nervous. But I know Rainbow Dash will be there for me, and Bulk Biceps too.”

“Hmm…” Discord finished off his pastry and magically made two sugar cubes come bouncing across the table into his tea, “Now, Rainbow Dash I know, but who is this Bulk Biceps character?”

Fluttershy blinked and smiled a little more (and blushed just a little too.) “Oh, well, um…he’s just another pony on our team. You’ve probably seen him before, Discord. He’s kind of tall and strong and white and a pegasus…and every once in a while he yells and gets excited, but mostly he’s really quiet.”

Discord raised an eyebrow and almost smiled a little. “Well, if he’s caught your eye then I’m afraid he’s in for some disappointment—you see, no one could possibly be good enough for you, Fluttershy.”

Fluttershy smiled and blushed, looking down entirely into her tea. “Oh Discord, that’s not true.”

“Oh, but it is,” Discord insisted with a grin and another sip of tea. “You’re the kindest, most nurturing, most affectionate pony there ever was. I barely feel good enough to be your friend half of the time. I can’t imagine a pony that could be good enough to be a little more than a friend to you.”

“Discord, thank you.” Fluttershy smiled up at him. “But of course you’re good enough to be my friend. You make everything so lively, Discord. And I’m very glad we got to know each other.” Then she leaned across the table and gave him a gentle hug with one of her forelegs, her eyes closed and her smile bright.

Discord’s eyes went wide and then a warm smile came over his features. He looked down and gently patted Fluttershy’s head with his paw. “I’m glad we got to know each other too, dear Fluttershy.” He swallowed and raised an eyebrow and added, “And do you really think I’m turning out to be a good friend?”

Fluttershy pulled back and nodded up at him with a warm smile. “The best.”

Discord beamed a little at this information and then the two friends separated went back to enjoying their tea party.

Out in the hall, Celestia had to pull back from the door for a moment. She put a hoof to her mouth.

Luna turned to look at her, still grinning, an eyebrow raised. “Celestia?”

Celestia took a breath to get her bearings and then couldn’t help herself. “Luna…they’re so cute together. And he’s so sweet with her.” A small giggle escaped her. “I thought Fluttershy’s kindness might bring out his kinder side, but I never knew he had that gentleness in him.” She sighed. “Oh, but we really shouldn’t be peeking in on them like this. This is their private time together, and Discord really is a very private person.”

Luna just rolled her eyes and nudged her sister. “Oh come on, Celestia, you already made me promise not to go snooping into his chaotic room for the sake of privacy. At least give me this. Listen, they’re talking again.” Luna peeked back through the door and Celestia hesitated but then couldn’t help looking in too.

“So, any progress with the keys and the harmony chest?” Discord sipped his tea again.

Fluttershy smiled but sighed and shook her head, looking down at a pastry she had just put on her plate. “No, I’m afraid not. No one’s found any keys yet. And we haven’t had too much time to look with everything that’s been going on lately. We’re not even sure where to start.”

“Hmm…” Discord twirled his beard around his fingers to ponder, “well, I’m assuming the keys will be related to each of your elements somehow. So I’m sure you ladies pretty much won’t be able to help finding each of your keys—and you might even come across them when you least expect it. I can almost feel the magic of it waiting to happen, really. Did I ever tell you that I’m an expert at sensing magical imbalances?”

“Really?” Fluttershy smiled in interest.

“Really?” Celestia whispered to herself, raising an eyebrow. “An expert at it?” She recalled how after Twilight’s ascension to princesshood, Discord had mentioned at least having the ability to sense shifts in magic, but to be an expert at it was another matter. Celestia listened even more attentively now as the conversation progressed.

Luna, meanwhile, was still much more concerned with resisting the urge to giggle at the tender sight before her of a former villain having tea at a little table with one of the shyest little ponies around.

“Oh yes,” Discord grinned proudly at Fluttershy and nodded. “All part of being the master of chaos. I can feel when there are wacky disruptions in the natural order of things and track the source based on the nature of the chaos the imbalance causes.” He sighed as he sipped more of his tea and added, “And trust me, however much I don’t care to admit it, you girls are closer to opening that chest than you realize.”

Fluttershy finished a nibble of her pastry and tilted her head to the side. “Do you not like the harmony chest for some reason, Discord? I’m sure whatever’s inside will help Twilight and the rest of us save Equestria whenever we need to again now that we don’t have the Elements.”

Discord nodded. “Yes, whatever’s inside probably will, but it’ll also probably stand a pretty good chance of being able to turn me to stone again if all of you feel like it.” He pouted and looked down into his tea. “Probably some big anti-chaos canon made especially by the tree to get back at me for the vines thing…” He rolled his eyes.

Fluttershy pouted but then smiled again. “Discord, even if whatever’s in there could turn you to stone, I won’t let that happen. I know being a statue upset you a lot.”

The master of chaos sighed, crossing his arms over his chest and glancing away…something a little dull in his gaze. “Yeah, well, you know…chaos just doesn’t like stone body suits, is all.”

Fluttershy nodded and took up her teacup again. “Well, you’re a good person now and all better. Ever since Princess Luna came back from her banishment and stopped being Nightmare Moon, everyone’s been so happy and no one would dream of sending her away again. And I’m sure no one would dream of ever imprisoning you again either, Discord. You…might be a little hard to understand sometimes, but we love you. And we want you here.” She smiled up at him, her eyes twinkling with sincerity.

Discord just looked back down at her with wide eyes. “You…love me? And you want me around and you’re happy I’m here and…you love me?”

Fluttershy nodded. “Very much, Discord.”

Discord looked down into his teacup. He started to mumble softly to himself. “No one ever told me they…” He took a breath and cleared his throat, speaking up again. “Yes, well, I…I-I’m just glad there’s no more stone to look forward to. It’s freezing in the winter and chafing in the summer. And it’s such a bother not being able to plug up my ears whenever Celestia starts yammering on about friendship. That’s all.” He sipped his tea, still looking down, eyes still quite wide, and a faint blush now upon his features.

Fluttershy smiled in an all-knowing way. “Of course, Discord.” She sipped more of her tea.

Discord swallowed and played with another pastry on his plate. “I’ll try to help you girls with the keys thing, if I can.”

Fluttershy beamed a little. “Thank you, Discord. We’d appreciate that very much.” She picked up her pastry to take another bite.

The two friends continued on with their tea party.

At the door, Celestia and Luna stepped back for a moment, eyes wide…and lightly glistening with tears. They looked to each other but didn’t know what to say.

Then Luna blinked as Celestia suddenly came forward and hugged her very, very tightly with her foreleg.

Celestia, eyes closed, took in and let out a deep breath. “I was almost starting to forget, but what happened with you is half the reason I wanted to bring him back. You’re better now and I missed you, and…I love you so much, Luna.”

Luna blinked but then closed her eyes and hugged her sister with a foreleg in return. “I missed you too…and I love you too, big sister.” She sniffled and pulled back with a small laugh. “Oh we can’t ever send him away again. Not after all of this. I’d burst into tears if we even tried.”

Celestia laughed softly as well, wiping the tears from her eyes. “Me too.”

Luna nodded. “Shall we leave them to their privacy now?”

Celestia smiled but glanced at the crack in the door. “Maybe we could watch for just a few more minutes. Luna, I’ve never seen something so heartwarming. And I think having this memory will be good for us for the next time he’s obnoxious or rude or plays a prank on us. We’ll remember that deep down inside he’s just happy to be here and a better friend than he wants to admit sometimes.”

Luna nodded. Then sisters shared a smile and looked back inside to Discord and Fluttershy again.

The tender moment between the draconequus and the pegasus had passed now, and the two friends were drinking tea and eating together like normal once more.

“So Discord, how are you liking living with the princesses?” Fluttershy asked, adding some cream to her teacup. “It must be wonderful to live in the castle.”

Discord chuckled. “Living in the castle? Yes, that part is absolutely wonderful between the servants and the food and the accommodations. Living with the princesses, however…” he sighed and rolled his eyes to the side, “well, it’s got its ups and downs. Luna can be very bossy to me.” He pouted.

Back by the door, Luna pouted and raised an eyebrow, and Celestia tried not to chuckle.

At the table, Discord went on. “And Celestia’s always smiling sweetly and batting her eyelashes trying to get me to do her bidding.” He laughed.

By the door, Celestia gasped and blushed (and Luna had to stifle a laugh).

Back at the table Fluttershy smiled up at Discord and shook her head. “Oh now, Discord, I’m sure they mean well and that they have a lot of good qualities as friends that you’ve come to appreciate.”

Discord sighed and shrugged, eating another bite of pastry. “Well, I suppose they’re all right sometimes. Or at least they’re all right to prank.” He chuckled and leaned in closer, though his voice remained loud. “You know, don’t tell anyone, but lately I’ve been magically making all of Celestia’s mid-afternoon cake sugar free—she has no idea, but it’s so funny to watch her almost nod off during important meetings from the lack of a sugar rush.”

Back at the door Celestia’s eyes went wide and her jaw fell. Beside her Luna snickered.

At the table, Discord smiled more. “Oh and Luna’s been fun to play with too. You know, she loves being taken very seriously by the staff. But lately I’ve been distributing little head shots of her grinning and wearing clown make up to all of the guards and maids and stewards…”

Luna gasped! “You—that is why the night guard has been snickering so much!” As Luna lunged forward with a scowl, fully ready to confront Discord, Celestia just barely held her back and kept her quiet as Discord finished his sentence.

“…And so no one will suspect me or even say a word to her, I’ve been signing the pictures ‘From Celestia’ and adding in a postscript saying that my actions are all part of helping dear Princess Luna relax in our modern society!” Discord burst into such laughter that he had to wipe a tear from his eye! “Oh I knew learning how to expertly forge Tia’s signature would come in handy one day. I’ll have to put it to use on some good, chaotic decrees soon.” Discord got his laughter under control and shook his head.

Celestia gasped and nearly tripped forward over Luna. “My signature!?”

Fluttershy tried to smile supportively. “Well, I’m glad you three are…doing your best to find a way to relate.” Then she blinked and glanced around (part of which included glancing to the door). “Discord, did you hear something?”

Discord blinked. “Hear something? I—” And indeed suddenly the sound of a faint gasp or two met his sharp chaotic ears. Discord carefully looked up, looked around, looked to the windows…looked to the door. Then he looked away from the door, blushing slightly at first and then scowling…but then resuming a smile (though a much more cunning one now). His gaze went back to Fluttershy. “Oh, probably just mice—this castle is lousy with them, you know. Celestia and Luna may put on a good show out in public, but really they live quite deplorably. Messes everywhere and no picking up after themselves, and I’m pretty sure Celestia just plain keeps a cake bunker under her bed.” (Discord’s tail snapped—a large bucket containing some kind of liquid positioned itself floating high just above the entrance to the dining room). Quite a few more light sounds of indignation were now heard from behind the door meanwhile.

Fluttershy glanced at the door again but then shook her head and looked to Discord again with a smile. “Oh Discord, I’m sure the princesses do their best. It’s a big place to keep tidy, after all, and they are busy, and every house is messy sometimes, even mine.” Her smile brightened. “If there really are so many mice though, I’d love to meet them. And if they’re causing a problem in the castle, maybe I could help convince them to leave.”

Discord smiled but shook his head. “Thank you, but that won’t be necessary, Fluttershy. I have plans to deal with any ‘pest’ problems on my own.” He sipped his tea.

Fluttershy pouted a little. “You won’t distress the pests at all, will you, Discord?”

Discord shook his head. “I won’t cause them any harm, Fluttershy, you have my word.”

Fluttershy smiled. “Thank you, Discord.” She sipped more tea. “But I’m sure you must at least get to see some interesting things and hear some interesting stories living with the princesses.”

Discord chuckled. “Well, I get to hear all about how perfectly wonderful of a houseguest I am. I’ll really have type up and send a transcript to the Canterlot papers about it—the two sisters going on and on about the joys of living with a gentleman friend unsupervised.” He started munching on another pastry and leaned back in his chair a little. “You know, they won’t admit it, but I think these princesses of yours have been severely lacking in male companionship for some time. Now Luna, she at least has an excuse—she was on the moon for a thousand years, not much opportunity to socialize. But Celestia, really…when I first suggested coming to live here just as friends you should have seen her response—she blushed like a little filly.” He laughed, finishing off his pastry with a satisfied smirk.

“Discord, don’t tease Princess Celestia,” Fluttershy chided with a smile and a shake of her head. “Not everypony is good at dating.”

“I know, but Celestia’s clearly abysmal at it.” Discord rolled his eyes. Meanwhile, some more sharp sounds came from behind the door. (Discord’s tail snapped again, and the floor right in front of the door became covered in super sticky taffy.)

“Discord…if we can’t say something nice…” Fluttershy began with a smile and a look.

Discord sighed. “I know, I know, say nothing at all.” He sipped his tea again. “But let’s see, what were we talking about—oh yes, the interesting things I’ve heard and seen around here. Hmm…well, there’s Luna in the morning before her coffee—not a pretty sight. Celestia after her annual Monday night cake binge just before the sugar coma makes her pass out—also not a pretty sight. And I’ve been poking around in their bathroom—you should see how much enchanted hairspray those to girls have for keeping their manes as insane as they look. Of course, that’s nothing compared to how stocked up Celestia is on anti-aging cream—I think a large part of the Canterlot area taxes must go toward keeping her supply fresh.” He chuckled. “Oh, and once I saw the two sisters get into a tantrum with each other over a late night game of chess—something about Luna accusing Celestia of always having to topple Luna’s black queen with her white queen.” He smirked, his eyes narrowing. “And once, just once (so far, at least), I caught them hiding behind some hedges in the courtyard during a surprise Royal Troops Inspection Day clearly just to check out all of the stallion guards in secret. They were smiling and whispering and giggling and blushing and everything.” (He snapped his tail again, and suddenly beside the levitating bucket of liquid by the door was a levitating sack of rainbow colored feathers.)

“Oh my,” Fluttershy gasped in surprise.

“Oh!” Definitely a distinct ‘oh’ from behind the door. “Out of context, I—” The voice was stifled.

Fluttershy’s eyes went wide and she looked over to the door again. “Discord, what was that?”

Discord smirked more and waved her off. “Oh, pfft, probably an echo—I tell you what, why don’t I open the door, and that should take care of the situation!” And suddenly his tail snapped once more.

The next several seconds featured the dining room doors entirely disappearing, the reveal of Celestia and Luna (faces full of indignation and shock, Celestia barely holding back Luna (again) from trying to burst into the room), and then the two sisters getting a bucket of chocolate milk dumped upon them, stumbling forward only to find themselves stuck on taffy, and then having the bag of rainbow feathers dumped all over them.

Celestia and Luna just stood there, eyes wide, unmoving and unspeaking as the prank finished playing out.

Discord grinned so very much. “Oh, and would you look at that, Fluttershy—I’ve taken care of two pests already with barely even trying.”

Fluttershy gasped and instantly dashed forward. “Princess Celestia! Princess Luna!” She looked back to Discord. “Discord, please…”

Discord sighed and stood up, strolling forward to join her. “Oh all right.” He snapped his fingers, and instantly all of his chaos was gone and the princesses were clean again. “But it’s not my fault—consequences happen when you spy on other people.” He glared at the sisters a little.

Fluttershy blinked and looked back to the two princesses. “Is that true, Princess Celestia, Princess Luna? Were you spying on our tea party?”

The sisters blushed.

Then Celestia took a breath and came forward. She looked down at Fluttershy with a slight frown. “Yes, Fluttershy, I’m afraid we were. And I apologize. To both of you.” She bowed her head low. “It was wrong of us to spy on you.”

Luna nodded and stepped forward as well, likewise looking a touch sheepish and sad. “Yes, we are sorry, Fluttershy.” She bowed her head too. “I hope you are not too disappointed in us.”

Both sisters then met the gaze of the little yellow pony.

Fluttershy just smiled at them though. “I’m not disappointed in you. It’s your own house, after all, and everyone get curious sometimes. But…next time if you want to join in, please just ask. There’s plenty of tea to go around.” Her smile warmed.

Celestia smiled warmly in return. “Thank you, Fluttershy. We’ll keep that in mind.”

“Yes, wise Fluttershy, your advice is sound,” added Luna with a slight bow of her head.

Fluttershy smiled more. Then she turned to Discord. “And Discord, I’m sorry the end of our tea party got interrupted. Maybe we’ll try again tomorrow at my house?”

Discord smiled warmly down at her and nodded. “And I’ll bring the cucumber sandwiches as usual?”

Fluttershy nodded in return. “Yes, please.”

“You’ve got yourself a deal then, my dear.” Discord gave her a dramatic bow.

Fluttershy laughed. Then she sighed, glancing down in shyness. “Well, um…I should probably get going now. It’s getting a little late, and my train’s leaving soon.” She looked back up at him. “Discord, I just want to say that I’m so proud of you and I’m glad you’re having a good time getting to know the princesses. I think you’ll end up the best of friends.”

Discord couldn’t help but smile in a touch of pride and almost shyness in return, but he just cleared his throat and shrugged, glancing away. “Yeah, well…we’ll see. I’ll keep trying, I suppose.”

“I know you will.” Fluttershy smiled warmly. Then she came forward and gave him a hug. “Goodbye for now, Discord.”

Discord blinked and glanced awkwardly at the two sisters for a moment (who blinked as well and then made a show of looking away). Then Discord sighed and finally put his paw arm around Fluttershy to give her a little hug in return and patted on the head. “Er…goodbye, Fluttershy. Have a pleasant trip home.”

Fluttershy pulled back and smiled up at him. “Thank you, Discord.” Then she turned and headed over to the princesses. “Goodbye, Princess Celestia and Princess Luna.” She bowed. “Have a nice day.”

The sisters nodded in return.

“Goodbye, Fluttershy.” Celestia smiled.

“Farewell.” Luna gave her a wave.

Fluttershy straightened up and then departed through the empty dining room doorway.

The three ‘roommates’ were left in awkward silence for a moment.

Then Discord looked to the sisters, crossed his arms over his chest, and glared at them. His tail snapped, and suddenly the doors to the room returned…and they were closed. “I think we need to talk,” he said calmly if with a clear hint of annoyance underneath his tone.

Celestia’s frown grew and she sighed and came forward. “Discord, we’re so sorry, we—”

“Completely unacceptable!” Discord cut her off, starting to pace (and he was blushing a little). “You know, I get it, fine, technically this is ‘your’ house, technically I’m just a long term guest, but how dare you invade my privacy! My special time alone with my friend!”

“Oh, you invade our privacy all the time, Discord,” Luna countered with a pout, unable to help herself.

Discord rolled his eyes. “That is different, and you know it! Sometimes I might stumble upon you ladies in awkward moments, or pop in and ask to join your sisterly fun, or even make note of something you’re doing out in the open that’s embarrassing, and I might even eavesdrop a little on communal conversation. But I certainly don’t sneak peeks behind closed doors! Just like we talked about with your bathroom—remember? And haven’t I not popped in their when one of you is in there ever since?” He turned forward and glared at both sisters. “And Luna, I know you don’t like anyone going near your room from our little misadventure when I first came to live here—do you think I sneak in there anyway or spy on you when you’re in there? Absolutely not! And Celestia, I know that when the door to your study is open during the day that it’s fair game for me to enter, but when it’s closed or you have a private meeting with a dignitary in there, do I barge in anyway with colorful jokes and chaotic antics? Absolutely not! And half the time it’s because I know if I’m good and leave you alone, maybe you’ll actually have time for one our cake midnight snacks.” He blinked as he suddenly realized the last thing that had left his mouth and then quickly cleared his throat and went on. “Anyway, my point is, the dining room door was clearly closed, I was clearly having a friend over for a private party, and you two spied on me and ruined the end of Fluttershy’s visit. And even I’m friendship savvy enough now to know that is not how friends behave at all.” He sighed and glanced to the side, looking a touch distressed and blushing again and mumbling. “My friendship with Fluttershy is our own business…. It’s not some spectacle for you to gawk at because you’re bored.”

Celestia and Luna had just listened to his rant with wide eyes and growing frowns.

Luna came forward now, all sarcasm and anger gone from her tone. She sighed. “Discord, you are absolutely right. And please accept my most humble apologies.” She bowed low. “This is all my fault. I’m the one who discovered you were having tea together and decided to spy. And I brought Celestia into it. Please forgive me.”

Celestia came forward too and shook her head. “But I shouldn’t have gone along with her. It was unkind of me, Discord, and unfair.” She bowed too. “If it’s any consolation though, we didn’t spy to tease you. We just thought it was so wonderful to see you so close with a dear friend. But that doesn’t change the fact that we had no right to do it.”

Discord was quite for a moment. Then he sighed, still glancing away, still blushing a little. “How long were you two here exactly?”

Celestia and Luna raised their heads, glanced at each other uneasily, and then looked back to Discord. Luna cleared her throat. “The last fifteen minutes or so.”

Discord blinked. Then he swallowed and blushed more. “I only knew you were here for about the last five. Great…” He sighed, and then seemed like he wasn’t sure what to do.

The sisters looked to each other again and then to Discord. Celestia spoke. “Discord, we won’t ever share with anybody anything we saw. And if there’s any way we could make it up to you, anything at all, we’ll do it. Just name it.” Luna nodded in agreement.

Discord was quite for a moment. But then he raised an eyebrow and his grin grew, and he moved very close to them... “Anything?

The sisters frowned in a touch of unease for a moment but then they nodded. “Yes, Discord,” Celestia replied, “anything.”

Discord’s eyes shone, and his grin grew to its fullest extent…

Twenty minutes later...

Discord rested on a large, cozy chair set at the tea table where he could overlook Celestia and Luna who were currently taking care of the tea things and dusting the room’s random furnishings and cleaning the windows by hoof…all while dressed in adorable French maid’s outfits.

“I think you missed a spot!” Discord remarked with a chuckle as he sipped some more tea from his cup which was currently suspended in the air by his side.

“Yes, Discord,” Luna put down the feather duster in her mouth and replied dryly, interrupting for a moment her cleaning of a picture frame on the wall.

“What was that?” Discord held a paw to his ear.

Luna sighed deeply, her voice going even flatter. “Yes, Discord…master of chaos, greatest comedian in the cosmos, and finest draconequus in all the land.”

Discord chuckled. “Better. I only have about ten minutes of this left until you’re done, so I want to savor every moment.” Discord took another sip of his tea and kicked back again.

Luna lowered her voice and came alongside her sister who was in the process of polishing a glass pane of one of the windows with a rag. “Let’s have Discord live with us, you said. It’ll be fun, you said. It’ll be an adventure in friendship, you said.”

Celestia sighed but couldn’t help smiling just a little. “Well, as Fluttershy puts it, our lives certainly are more...lively this way, heh.” She gave a small shrug and a sheepish grin. “Besides,” Celestia rolled her eyes, “at least you’re not the one he has on call for—”

“Oh, Celestia! I’m feeling peckish again! Another cupcake please! And I need a refill!” Discord’s voice suddenly rang out across the dining room.

Celestia sighed deeply and put down her cleaning rag. She approached Discord and made a cupcake platter appear in the air and then held out one to him with one hoof while she used her other hoof to refill his teacup. “Here you go, Discord.”

“Uh, uh, uh,” Discord shook his head, “what do we say while we’re serving me?”

Celestia tried very hard not to smile too much. “A cupcake and tea for your pleasure, oh brilliant and ever-entertaining Discord, spirit of chaos extraordinaire.”

“Thank you!” Discord nodded with a satisfied smile and then took the cupcake and ate it happily.

Celestia smiled a little and shook her head. Then across the room she caught the sound of Luna yawning. She glanced to her sister and then looked to Discord again. “Discord, if I stay to finish up serving you tea for both of us, can Luna leave early? She’s really supposed to be asleep now, and I don’t want her too tired for her nightly duties later.”

Discord sighed but nodded as he finished his cupcake. “Oh very well, as long as you stay, I suppose that’s fine.” He cleared his throat and addressed the night princess. “Luna, your sister has sprung you, you’re free to go! And I hope you’ve learned your lesson about the consequences of invading others’ privacy!”

Luna beamed and instantly made the feather duster and maid’s outfit disappear. “Most certainly! Pleasant afternoon, everypony!” And with that she dashed out of the dining room.

Celestia just shook her head and laughed softly as she watched her go. Then she lowered the cupcake platter to the table and looked to Discord with her usual pleasant smile. “What should I do next, Discord?”

Discord sighed, sipping his tea and glancing up at the ceiling. “Oh…I don’t know. It’d be nice if you could find this whole thing I’m putting you through more annoying for starters.” He looked to her and raised an eyebrow. “Luna was clearly perturbed by my demand for this maidservice/ ‘make up tea party’ thing. But you’re just as calm and pleased as ever. You really make annoying you a challenge, did you know that, Tia?” He grinned a little.

Celestia laughed softly. “But why be annoyed, Discord? It’s such a negative emotion. I’m sort of enjoying this actually. Maybe it’s a little inconvenient and embarrassing but…it’s nice in it’s own way.” She looked down. “I missed having a sibling to talk and tease for so long, and now I not only have Luna but you’re here too—kind of like the obnoxious older brother I never knew I wanted.” She looked up again.

Discord just eyed her curiously. “Ugh, you are far too forgiving,” he finally pronounced with an eye roll. “But fine then, if you insist on enjoying my pranks, I guess I can’t stop you…though I can work on other ways to annoy you.” He grinned a little more.

“Feel free, Discord,” Celestia smiled a little more in return. Then she moved closer to him, her voice lowering and her smile falling a little. “Discord, I just wanted to say again how sorry Luna and I are about spying on you and for interrupting your private time with Fluttershy. We promise, it will never happen again—you have our words.” She bowed her head.

Discord sighed and shrugged and placed his teacup down. “Yes, well…it’s fine, water under the bridge now. Just don’t let it happen again, like you said.” He rolled his eyes to the side. “And for the sake of diplomacy, I suppose I’m sorry about all that stuff I said about you and Luna during the five minutes when I knew you were there and wanted to bother you…. You know, the stuff about your castle being mice infested and you and Luna looking ghastly sometimes and the stuff about anti-aging cream and little spats…and spilling a little embarrassing moment or two that I’ve caught you two girls in.” Despite the sincere tone of the apology, at this point in delivering it he couldn’t help smirking at her a little.

“And the stuff about us lacking male companionship?” Celestia blushed slightly and glanced at him with a touch of amusement.

Discord’s smirk grew. “Well, I suppose I could have given you a little more credit. Dating isn’t everything, as Fluttershy pointed out, and besides Luna really was stuck on the moon for a thousand years so of course it’s understandable if it takes her a while to acclimate herself to the modern courtship scene. And as for you, you’ve done your best over the centuries, I’m sure. You at least seem to be getting more comfortable having me as a live in male friend. And since you almost always manage to stay poised around me even though I’m the most attractive and charming guy I know, I think that qualifies as a great accomplishment for you.” Discord chuckled.

Celestia just smiled at him more and shook her head (her blush persisting, though faint). “Discord just let me know when my time is up so that I can take off this outfit and go back to my duties, please.”

“Hey, you really want to have some fun?” The master of chaos smiled more. “Leave the maid outfit on all day while you’re doing your duties. Then you won’t have to be the one secretly watching the guards—the guards will be the ones secretly watching you. I mean more so than usual.” His laughter grew.

Celestia blinked and blushed distinctly. “Discord…! I-I really don’t think that’s ever the case.” She cleared her throat. “And besides, that day you saw Luna and I secretly looking over the guards, whenever it might have been—that’s just how Luna and I have chosen to start surprise inspections of the troops. There’s really nothing more to it than that.” Blushing entirely now, she finally just sighed and shook her head, bringing a hoof to her temple and trying not to smile. “Discord, why do you say these things?”

Discord just chuckled again. He was leaning over the table and practically gazing at her with interest now. “I say them because they’re true, dear Celestia. I personally think you and Luna have some more selfish motivations for randomly staring at a group of armored stallions from the secrecy of the hedges in your courtyard, even though I can’t prove it. And as for what I said about you keeping the maid’s outfit on, well, Tia, you can’t think you and Luna are the only ones I catch around here in candid moments. Of course the guards ‘notice’ you, of course everyone ‘notices’ you, Celestia…. Along with being the second nicest pony on the planet next to Fluttershy, you’re a not entirely unattractive mare. And by ‘not entirely unattractive’, I mean—”

“I-I have an idea of what you mean, thank you, Discord,” Celestia quickly managed, doing her best to keep poised though her features were flushed scarlet by now no matter how simple her smile was or how easy she had made her tone again.

Discord just grinned all the more and leaned back in his chair. “If it makes you feel any more comfortable, the guards pretty much evenly divide their time between noticing you and noticing Luna. If you both walked around in the maid’s outfits, no work would get done at all around here. Cue the changeling invasion and Sombra’s shadow ponies rising again and my return back to power.” He chuckled.

Celestia finally had to laugh a little too.

“Of course, personally, I think I pull off the look best of all.” He snapped his fingers, and suddenly Discord was wearing a French maid’s outfit too.

Celestia glanced at him and then couldn’t help bursting into warm laughter. Discord laughed too. Then he sighed. “By the way, I hate to admit this, but you time of servitude is up. You’re a free princess, Celestia.”

Celestia nodded. “Thank you, Discord. I have to go hold court soon anyway.” She turned toward the door but then paused and glanced over her shoulder, raising an eyebrow and grinning a little more. “But after I’m done, you wouldn’t to join me when I when I observe the changing of the guard today in the courtyard, would you? Somehow I think I’ll find it a little awkward today, and somehow I think you being there will help make it a little more amusing.”

Discord grinned and winked. “Can do.” He snapped, making the table and all of the tea things disappear and making a general’s outfit appear on himself complete with medals and a crop. He stood up straight and gave her a salute.

Celestia laughed more. “I’ll see you then, Discord.” She nodded her head and then she proceeded out of the dining room.

In the hallway, Celestia closed the doors behind her and then let out a breath, smiling to herself. “What am I going to do with him?” Suddenly she caught sight of a guard coming around the corner. Celestia smiled and approached him. “Oh excuse me, guard? I’m afraid I may be a few minutes late to court today. Will you kindly let the staff in the throne room know please and extend my apologies?”

Celestia was used to her guards nodding to her requests, saluting, saying they would be taken care of, and giving her a small bow before departing. She was not used to a guard nearly tripping over his own hooves, staring at her with wide eyes, and letting his jaw fall open as a dark blush stained his features.

Celestia raised an eyebrow, her smile falling. “Guard, are you all right?”

“I, um…” the guard swallowed and quickly shook his head, “Y-Yes, of course, your highness, I just, um…” He sighed and looked away. “I-I’ll take care of it.” And then his eyes hesitantly came back to her.

Celestia’s eyebrow went higher and she looked down at herself. “Is there something wrong? I—” Instantly, her eyes widened—she was still in the maid’s outfit. “Oh.” The sun princess blushed a little and looked to the guard with a small smile. “This outfit. My apologies, my sister and I were just playing a little game in the dining room, and…” From inside the dining room (right behind the doors actually) Celestia could hear some of Discord’s unbridled laughter…and it didn’t help that the guard’s jaw fell again at her attempt at an explanation, which she quickly realized wasn’t helping at all. Celestia sighed deeply. “Never mind.” She used her magic to remove the outfit. “I’ll just head to court now, I think. Thank you anyway for your help though.” She moved past the guard.

The guard nodded and cleared his throat. “Er…yes, whatever you say, your highness.” He managed a shaky sault.

Celestia smiled more, then paused and glanced at him over her shoulder. “And guard?”

He looked to her, eyes still wide in some disbelief, awaiting what she would have to say.

“Hmm…” Celestia’s eyes hazed playfully, “jaw closed please, posture straight, and I know it’s not part of your normal training etiquette, but please don’t stare. There’s going to be another surprise troops inspection sometime soon again, after all, and you’ll want to be prepared.” She smiled softly, doing her best not to blush.

The guard blinked and then instantly straightened up, closed his mouth, turned his sights forward, and gave a proper salute. “Yes, your majesty, a thousand pardons.”

“Not to worry.” Celestia nodded. “Good day.” And then she departed.

When she was gone, the guard couldn’t help blushing and shaking his head in disbelief.

Then suddenly with a snap and a burst of light and smoke, Discord appeared floating by the guard with a grin. “See, and you and the other guards probably thought it would be dangerous for me to live here with the princesses. But look how much I’ve loosened things up, even Celestia.” He chuckled and turned on his back. “Well, anyway, I’m off to make some chaos. Ta ta. And have fun serving your sun princess for the rest of the day.” Then he snapped his fingers and was gone.

The guard just stood alone in the hallway for a moment with wide eyes. And then he sighed very deeply and turned to go back to his rounds. “None of the other guards are going to believe this one—and considering some of the thing’s Discord’s put us through so far, that’s saying something.” His look went a little dry, and he mumbled to himself. “I wonder if we can negotiate a ‘cost of living with Discord’ raise.” And with that remark and a slight smile and shake of his head, he went along on his way to see to his duties (fighting back a very strong blush for the rest of the day).

Author's Note:

Yay, another midquel (finally) done! :twilightsmile: I hope you all enjoyed this one, and thank you all again for your patience with updates--my life is insanity right now lol. :twilightsheepish:

Anyway, I'm considering writing up a draft for a midquel featuring Discord and the staff next (potential title: The One During the Poker Game). But if that doesn't work out, then we'll stick with the schedule for these and the next one will be The One that References Twilight (no, not the Princess). Basically, Discord crashes Celestia and Luna's chick flick night, makes things about as awkward as they can possibly be made while still keeping this story safely PG 13. I know I had fun writing it, and I hope all of you will have fun reading it :raritywink:

Thanks for reading, everypony!