• Member Since 17th Mar, 2013
  • offline last seen 19 minutes ago



This story is a sequel to The Tempest

Upon arriving at the royal wedding in Canterlot, all the foreign delegates have to do is show face on behalf of their nations, wish the happy new couple well, and try not to die.

You wouldn't expect the third of these to be that difficult.

Cover art from the gallery of Alumx. Proofread by themaskedferret, Georg, and Infernus Noctis.

Chapters (7)
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Comments ( 511 )

I can see one item of clothing he seems to have forgotten for his flight.

A parachute. :pinkiehappy:


"Arch-Minister, you wound the pride of Asinial aeroengineering by requesting such an item."

"Well, not to put too fine a point on it, but the last time our aeroengineering especially intruded on my attention, it was in press headlines."

"That -"

"With attached body-counts."

Well, this promises to be magnificent, especially how many foreign dignitaries are going to see Celestia fall in battle... and how many will see Cadence succeed where she failed.

The figure who gives Chrysalis the news is also quite intriguing. My first thought is Tirek, though the mention of a forehoof makes me question that. Of course, that section seems to be at least partially from Chrysalis's perspective. We'll have to wait and see. Still, good to see that Chryssy knew why open conquest was a bad idea before she was tempted with a banquet the likes of which she'd never seen.

Also, I kind of want to see a map of the world made by Literal Minded.

“It’s just a wedding, Damasque,” said Burro, pushing open the door. Two dark-clad jennies fell into step beside him as he trotted out into the corridor. “How uncivilised do you expect it to get?”

Is he suffering from the effects of dementia's onset? No being of his experience from this world should ever utter those words in that particular combination.

Glad you think so! Hope the rest turns out as interesting for you.

Suitable reactions to Celestia's fall should abound, and I'm sure the exact identity of Chrysalis's guest should be revealed in all good time. :raritywink:

And I shan't lie, despite my ongoing lack of cartographical skills, I kind of want to draw that map as well.

Allow a jack some reckless, reckless optimism from time to time. Maybe Equestria shan't apocalyptically shit itself on this occasion. Maybe.


"This parachute seems to be missing something."

"I assure you, Arch-Minister, this 'crutch' you requested is fully complete, absolutely perfect in every--"

"Where's the handle? You know, the thing you pull to make the parachute work."

"A primitive feature no longer needed with our revolutionary new design. This parachute is fully automatic."

"You mean it goes off on impact. Get me one with a handle, or I'll have you demonstrate this model in front of the entire engineering team to teach them the lesson that some things don't need changed!"

"Arch-Minister! Watch your tongue!"


"This new parachute is a rectangle of solid iron. You've attached a handle, I'll grant you that much."

"Indeed, Arch-Minister. See, we in the engineering department have some doubts about current parachute philosophy. The traditional design slows falls. But it's not the fall that kills you, see? It's the ground."

"I don't like where this is going in the slightest."

"Therefore, if you simply use this shield to block the ground on impact, then that should -"

"You know, every day, I lament that my office doesn't allow me to just execute donkeys on a whim. Every Creator-damned day."

Always the smartest course of action, really, no matter the situation.

“All the tooled parts transforming into guinea pigs and back again was too much for her in the end, I’m afraid,” said Damasque.

While pig iron is a very poor material to use in a flying machine, it's almost universally agreed that guinea pig iron is even less well-suited to the purpose.

Quite the shame.

Terrible substance to use in construction in general, really. Very prone to cavyties.

It's certainly unbeaverlable in terms of ...

Scratch that. In terms of tensile strength, it's downright hareible ...

It's soft enough that it's easy to mara using ... you know what, screw it, this deserves more thought than I'm capable of dispensing at four in the morning. People think making these is easy, you know.

Ah, so the principle characters involved will be at the wedding as guests while it happens. I'm surprised I didn't think of that. It seems only natural now that I've seen it. Glad to see that not everybody will be there, by the way. Even if it means we'll see less of some of the more interesting personalities like the Crown or the Cormaer, it avoids that overcrowding feeling that Tempest had at times.

"Inhales deeply"

I don't know what it is but I always enjoy these stories on statecraft, even when I don't quite get all the terminology.:pinkiehappy:

Good story thus far, good job. :moustache:

I can sympathize. Sleep deprivation makes everyone a little less shrew-d.

"palace complex, and took"
"complex and"?

"senses, but otherwise"
"senses; otherwise"?

"moment, before quickly"
"moment before"?

"like a hive of serpents"

"Literal Minded was generally regarded as one of the best pony explorers of the last few centuries, albeit as good with names as polio was with infants"

"with little running streams across"
"streams running"?

"avidly, and were"
"avidly and"?

"discovery after all"
"discovery, after"?

New word!

"flashed and magic"
"flashed, and"?

"stiffly rose a forehoof"

"either side, and had"
"side and"?

I promise that whenever impropriety arises during today, I’ll be a mere accessory rather than a root cause.

:rainbowlaugh: My new favourite quote.

“Recall the toaster the Auspicious Guild of Boundary-Breakers gifted you last month, Arch-Minister?”

"Oh, the one developed in collaboration with the Alchemists' Guild? How could I not."

Hey. Hey. I'm not having this comments section devolve into a mess of random animal wordplay. I couldn't bear that.

Some judicious trimming of characters has happened, though I might also scupper myself there by throwing in yet more faces. Next chapter should give a full accounting of the folks present.

Statecraft's always good fun to watch, ideally from afar. Glad you're liking it! :pinkiehappy:

Less of this, lest I get ratty with the whole thing.

All fixed, and thank you once again! :twilightsmile:

I may have giggled to myself in an obnoxiously self-congratulatory manner during the typing of the former, I shan't lie. Glad to have your interest for this one as well!

the Auspicious Guild of Boundary-Breakers

Ah yes. A name to inspire joy and delight in the hearts of all, especially Occupational Health And Safety Officers.

This looks promisingly...explosive, especially given what we know is going to happen. Poor Celestia.

7393120 It’s akin to uttering the statement “what could possibly go wrong?”
And the answer is, of course, everything.
(I sincerely apologise for the TV Tropes link)


"Welcome to the Auspicious Guild, young boundary-breakers! As our apprentices, you shall learn all our arts and build upon our work so that it may benefit generations of donkeys to come. Remember always our watchwords: 'Shrapnel only kills you if you let it'."

Aaand half the people viewing this comments section were never heard from again. That site's too addicting for anyone's good.

Too late. I'm already feeling pretty grizzly over the whole affair.

7394450 You have my sympathies, it'd bug me as well.
*sigh* I'll duck out of this now.
Seriously. Why is this so bloody difficult to stop?

“One happy, happy day,” they muttered to themselves, “I’ll have a meeting with someone who doesn’t feel the need to be undeservedly flippant.”

Foreshadowing a meeting with Celestia or Luna or Twilight or something?

Clothing is gonna be noticed by Rarity. Calling it.

Shipping Alloy X Tundra?

Shipping Silhouette X Damasque?

Ships depend on age differences, if any, between components...

I still wanna find out what happens when I spray a cherngelerng with RAID. :pinkiecrazy:

Dark and low-hanging clouds which rarely shed rain hovered constantly over the black and serrated tops of the ridges,

"The big, black clouds, all heavy with rain, that shadowed the ground of Kapiti Plain..."

That was... 1983... God damn, I'm so old...

There's a time and a plaice to duck out of things, and this isn't it. Pony up and make amends for your misdeeds. No weaseling out of this, now.

(7393264 See what you've instigated. Hang your head in shame.)

Clothes Horse would undoubtedly have her own somewhat better-informed critique of Burro's dress to offer.

Age-wise, I'd peg both Alloy and Tundra as in their early/mid twenties. Silhouette's in his late twenties, while Damasque's just around fifty or so. Ship accordingly and to preference.

This nets you either one dead or severely annoyed changeling. Spray with all due prudence, and bring back-up cans for when its angry brethren enter the fray.

This is a good start of a long awaited story. I wonder who the visitor of the Changeling hive is and if Burro Delver learns not to tempt fate. After NightMare Moon and Discord it's only a matter of time before another huge disaster happens.

If the Chekov's Toaster introduced in this chapter is not fired (at some attacking changeling, no doubt) before the end of the story, I shall be very disappointed. :pinkiehappy:

Haha, another awesome installment to a great series. Hope to see more soon!

Glad you've been looking forward to it! :twilightsmile:

if Burro Delver learns not to tempt fate.

I'll be honest, the smart money's on 'Hell no' here.

I can't imagine what you could possibly be referring to or predicting. That's just the most innocent, inauspicious gunpowder-powered toaster there ever was, and it's going to do nothing but sit politely and quietly to itself for the rest of the narrative.

Happy to have you aboard for this one!

That'll give you a slightly better chance against the hive, I shan't lie.

Basic genre-savviness is such an under-appreciated and under-utilised skill by Burro and others, bless their hearts.

7394832 I'm almost certain that visitor was Tirek. The timing, appearance, and attitude seem right enough.

A great start, and an even greater chain of pun comments! Looking forward to this fic's updates as well.

It's great to see Tundra again. I can't say I'm sad to not see the Crown. That thing gave me the willies.


Also, I kind of want to see a map of the world made by Literal Minded.

I second this motion.

Is it weird that I find the Black Defiles' alternative name of Home more ominous than both the regular one and Literal Minded's eloquent description?

And something tells me that Gellert might not be entirely completely disappointed with a battle breaking out in the middle of the wedding. At the very least, I can definitely see him after the event regaling the griffons back home with a tale of how he skillfully fought off a hundred-- no, two hundred changelings with just one claw while holding a mug of ale in the other, before being overwhelmed in a glorious last stand.

I notice the bit about the changelings being well trained enough to bring the stranger in... Phrased as if they were dog-like in their intellect. I hope to learn more.

Here we go! Can't wait to see some of the world leaders' opinions on the mane six. I suspect Pinkie's antics will be politely ignored by those who value their sanity.

Hmm... mysterious visitor is mysterious. The 'raised forehoof to lift cowl' would seem to rule out Tirek, Ahuizoatl, any Dragons or any Corvid (as if lack of accent wasn't the biggest clue to eliminating the last). I would have suspected an agent of the Crown, but this individual gives the impression of being important in their own right. Given the Crown's love of being flippant itself, I doubt it would complain about flippancy, so it probably isn't wearing someone. Sombra is possible, though unlikely since the Crystal Empire has yet to return, and when he was seen in the show he was less than sane, growling and murmuring about crystals. Starlight is busy in her village and would have no motive yet. Sunset is on the other side of the mirror and I'm doubtful that she would have the 'spies' the figure mentions early on.

At this point I'm assuming it is a new-ish character. My money would be on the Gazellen ambassador, especially since he called off his wedding visit. The real question is whether he is a lone agent, part of a small group, or if the majority of the Gazellen congress is in support of this.

Alloy is in his twenties? Huh, for some reason I had been envisioning him as much older, late forties at least.

Reactions to Sunhorse fall? That is easy.

Obviously, it is a carefully crafted ploy on the part of Celestia to make her enemies underestimate her in preparation for a coming attempted coup against the crown, while also getting Cadance to stand on her own three hooves (The last one is currently healing after she stepped on a particularly sharp rock). I mean, come now. Tirek? Pah! That foreleg is WHITE.

Sunhorse is clearly being her usual devous self.


A great start

Thank you! :twilightsmile:

an even greater chain of pun comments!

I'm both proud and not proud at the same time, which I think is the normal human reaction here.

What's that from?


"I shan't lie to you, my tribe. Before I went, I had the impression that Equestrian weddings were dull. But once I finish telling you about what happened there and my suitably heroic exploits throughout, you'll all be angling for invitations to the next one, I guarantee that."

Future chapters should shed a wee bit more light on changelings in this setting and their relative levels of intellect.

I do like to see some good speculation. And I do wish I could confirm any of it. :raritywink:

And yep, Alloy's in his twenties. I don't think I'd ever specified much about his personal appearance in previous stories, so any prior impression would have been perfectly fair.

Never underestimating Pretty Pony Princesses is generally a good set of watchwords to live by in this setting. Let's see whether it pans out here.

FoME was referring to the Izzet Guild from Magic: the Gathering. They're one of ten guilds that runs (and keeps running) the planet-city of Ravnica. Each guild represents the marriage of two of the five colors of magic (in the Izzet's case, wild, reckless red with curious, clever blue). The Izzet are technically in charge of Ravnica's public works, but they're best known for practicing !!SCIENCE!!.

Since you're clearly a fan of fantastic world-building, I would definitely recommend checking out the lore behind Ravnica and what each guild does (and how they interact). A quick way to do so would be to check out FoME's fic, The Implicit Neighs, which is pretty-much the Return to Ravnica storyline if ponies were native to Ravnica.

(Hope it isn't too gauche to recommend another's fic in one fic's comment section.)


Well, yes. It's clearly a plot, or Celestia is just horsin' around

This promises a happy combination of mystery and shenanigans. I look forward to it :twilightsmile:

Yep, I love to hear reader speculation on my own stories as well. Especially where I get to chuckle to myself with that perverse joy of already knowing the answers they are scrambling to find.

Another possibility I considered was a trick from a competing changeling hive hoping to eliminate a rival, but I suspect changelings would be able to identify each other, making that an unlikely suspect.

I can't speak for Carabas, but I don't consider it insulting unless the person is plugging their own stories.

Ah, I see. My knowledge of Magic begins and ends at 'There are colours and they do things'. That fic does look good by its description, though, and if there's grand worldbuilding on display, I'll have to give it a gander.

No worries about relevant story plugs either. :twilightsmile:

I shan't be drawn on this any longer. I need to squirrel away at least some puns for another occasion.

Mystery and shenanigans are always a fun combination. Hope I can pull it off, and glad to have you aboard. :pinkiehappy:

It's one of the great joys in life when writing any sort of serial fiction with initial mystery to it. Watching speculation unfold and cackling at the knowledge you hold.

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