• Published 24th Nov 2015
  • 2,300 Views, 69 Comments

Harmony's Song - pchn00



A young orphaned woman discovers family in a very unexpected place.

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Chapter 1: Meet Harm

Chapter One: Meet Harm

"Harm! Get yer ass up! You got your sunday thing and we got a truck to unload!"

Pounding headache? Check.

Disgusting taste in mouth? Check.

Jerry screaming and serving as alarm clock? Check.

A quick glance around the loft showed no unconcious men or women, so that was a plus at least. Always a little awkward kicking them out in the morning. With a grimace the target of the morning's aggression sat up with a groan. Running a hand through slightly greasier than she'd like hair. Probably time for a shower. Maybe. Definitely after she unloaded the truck. Probably.

After a cursory examination of her clothes, a faded black Metallica t-shirt, only slightly frayed jeans and discovering no vomit she nodded in satisfaction and fumbled around on the floor for her boots. Throwing clothes this way and that and locating the target of her hunt, she tugged on the heavy leather footwear and stood up.

A yawn, a stretch, a loud pop coming from her back and she was out the door and looking out over the bar that she lived above. It wasn't much. Hell it was a complete dive. But it sure as hell beat the alternatives. Taking the steps two at a time with heavy clomps of her boots she made her way behind the bar, her boss slash landlord watching her as she went.

"Late night?" The heavy set man followed her into the small kitchen as she rummaged in the fridge.

"They all are. I work til two in the morning?" Straightening up with an old piece of cold pizza she turned, looking down at the man.

Jerry was not a small man. Six foot two, solidly built muscle now hidden under a layer of fat from soft living. Harm however was head and shoulders taller than he was, and while she wasn't bulging with muscle she was well toned. "You work til two, then you get hammered or stoned or both and watch cartoons all night."

A grunt was the woman's response as she walked by him, the pizza vanishing in a couple bites. "So? I get up more or less on time."

"It's two in the afternoon."

"And the truck just got here . See? On time." With a shrug and a grin she stepped out the back door to the waiting truck. While Jerry moved up to sign for the delivery, she got to work hauling in the crates. One after the other, working tirelessly and quickly. The back of the truck emptied out and the driver was on his way.

"I'm just sayin, it's not y'know... the best way to live, kid."

He could tell by the way her shoulders stiffened he'd pushed just a bit to much. "Th'fuck do you care how I live man? I throw grabby drunks out, I unload all your shit, and I pay what you ask when you ask. If I want drink and smoke and watch Adult Swim all night I will."

Lifting his hands he sighed. "Alright, alright. I just worry, I deserve t'get my ass chewed out because I worry?"

A sigh. Hand running through her hair again. "No. You're right. Sorry just... I don't like nagging. And I'm fine. Shit last time you made me see a doctor he refused to believe I smoked, drank, or ate anything that wasn't that organic BS."

"I remember. Alright well I'm gonna get these on the shelves, I'll leave the stuff for the basement by the back door. Take 'em down when you get back."

Waving over her shoulder she grabbed her keys from behind the bar and sighed at the streets and sidewalks covered in white powder. "Hate the fucking snow."

=======Nearby=======

A small unassuming apartment complex was located across the street. The rents were some of the lowest in the city, and in Detroit that's saying something. The current occupants of apartment 402 were a pair of women in their mid to late twenties. Uninteresting save the wild hair colors and unusual gold eyes of the woman with the mint green hair and white stripe.

"Bonnie, this is 'not' the girl. We are absolutely wasting our time."

"Mmhm." Was the response she got from the woman with the indigo and pink curls.

"Every other word out of her mouth is... you know..."

"Fuck? We're adults Lyra. We can say swear words."

A huff from her partner. "I 'know' thank you, Bonnie. Yes, we can say them. We choose not to. It's a sign of a limited vocabulary."

"Mmhm." Bonnie tapped the earring hanging from her right ear. "This is Agent Drops, day seven of stake out. I say we give her one more week before we call it. Sound fair?"

There was a moment as her message was transferred. "How many signs has she exhibited, Agent Drops?" Came the reply after another minute.

"Four so far, but pretty sure we're not going to be seeing the fifth, ma'am."

Another long pause. "Alright. Use your best judgment Agent Drops. I know she's somewhere in that city and this is the first one who's really stood out from the others, yes?"

"Yes, ma'am. Junior Agent Heartstrings..." A harrumph from the agent in training. "...ran into her while picking up supplies in the city. So far we've yet to see a human even coming close to her size. She's exhibited strength signifigantly beyond her musculature would suggest as well."

"Alright ladies. I'm authorizing you to use the Element at your discretion, if you feel this might be her don't hesitate. I'm counting on you."

"Of course ma'am. Don't worry. You wanted the best, the agency gave you the best. Agent Drops out." Removing her hand from the crystal the connection went dead.

"Do you always have to call me 'junior' agent?"

"Yes. Because you're a junior agent. When our superiors say you're fit to handle missions alone, you'll stop being a junior agent." Setting the binoculars down she turned from the window to face her partner. "The subject is leaving on her motorcycle, send a scrying eye after her."

"Yeah, yeah." The transformed unicorn approached the window and knelt down comfortably. Eyes closed she began to hum softly. The ringing sound of her magic filling the room as a spectral eye formed and chased after the departing woman. "I'm on her."

"Good job, junior agent." Bonnie had to throw in with a playful smirk.

An equine snort was Lyra's response. "Well senior Agent Drops, maybe our superiors would like to know you're fraternizing with your trainee?"

"Oh it's extortion now? Let me guess, I fast track your promotion or you get me drummed out of the agency? Then I'll be the one mooching off of you, you know?"

"I'm not a mooch! I'm a free spirit. An artist."

"An artist who spent all day on the sofa or hanging out with foals reading comic books."

A long pause. "That does not in any way change my statement." Lyra glanced up coyly from her position on the floor. "I suppose in lieu of the promotion you could compensate me in... other ways. These freaky bodies aren't good for much but sweet Celestia I love these fingers."

A snort of amusement from Bonnie. "You mean you love 'my' fingers on 'your' teats."

Lyra shrugged. "Potato potah... hey she's going somewhere new."

"Oh? Where?"

Another shrug. "Not the pizza joint or her drug dealer and so far those are the only two places she goes. Oooo I could go for some of that."

"Drugs?"

"No dummy, pizza. Go pick us one up?"

"I'll pick us one up for dinner, yes. I'm not going anywhere while she's exhibiting a change in her pattern."

Lyra bit her lip. "Listening to you be all official and stuff is sexy."

"Later, Junior Agent. For now focus, please."

"Yes ma'am, Senior Agent. She's driving a good ways, looks like she's actually leaving the city."

"Lucky. I wish we could leave the city. It stinks worse than a minotauran steel works."

A shrug. "It's not so bad. They have pretty interesting music. And I've got like, tons of souveneirs."

"Which control has to look over and approve before you bring anything home. I promise that tablet you wasted most of your funds on isn't making the cut."

Wide-eyed Lyra clutched the little computer to her chest. "I'll smuggle it in! I can't live without it!"

"You have no way of charging it back home."

Mouth immediately opened to retort. Alas, Lyra found she had none to that. She settled for another equine snort and snapped her mouth shut.

Bonnie took the moment of peace to get up, stretch her legs, and tidy up the tiny apartment. She'd been all over the world of Equus working for the agency, but this was the first time she'd actually been to another world. Really besides technology being dominant over magic it wasn't to different from a minotauran city. The people were abrasive, violent, and rude. There were some exceptions she had to admit, but on the whole she missed home more all the time.

"Hey, hey! She's stopping! Cherrywood Retirement Village?"

Bonnie moved over to sit beside Lyra. "What's she doing?"

"Heading inside. Lots of old humans. Looks like some kinda community for their old folks. She's talking to an old stallion. She's ah..." A grimace. "...great."

"What? She's what?"

"She's... ugh... helping him eat. Now she's reading some book to him. I think he's kind of out of it. Like sick in the head or something." The look on her face was lifting Bonnie's spirits more and more.

The senior agent pulled out a list. "Kindness, check. I'm moving in tonight."

Lyra sat back and ended her scrying spell. "I hate it when you're right."

"Which is weird, since I always am."

Taking up the list Lyra glanced over it. Honesty, the woman never lied about anything. Typically she was honest to the point of rudeness. Laughter, she guffaws like an idiot at her cartoons all night. Loyalty, fierce loyalty to her boss, the bar, and the regular patrons. She goes well out of her way to look after them. Generosity, she isn't shy about sneaking rounds to regular customers. Kindness, check. Just one last test. "...man I hope she blows it."

========Later=======

"How's the old man, Harm?"

Harm shrugged as she entered the back of the bar, tossing her keys under the counter. "Sick, old, and out of it. They think he's gonna go soon." Hefting a pair of boxes and trudging downstairs. Her boss always gave her space when she came back from her weekly visit with her dad.

"Probly gonna be quiet tonight if you wanna just bum around your room, Harm." His voice holding more tenderness than usual.

"Nah." As she came back upstairs for another load. "I'm good. Besides I don't get free booze when I'm not working."

Jerry chuckled. "Fair enough. At least go take a shower. You're startin' to stink, kid. Bad for business."

Coming back for the last box she gave a nod. "Fair. I'll grab a shower."

"And wear a different shirt. Kid I toldja gimme yer laundry, I'll bring it home and wash it for ya. The missus don't mind."

"Alright, alright. Christ. I'll clean my room, just for you."

"Thanks, you're a delight as always."

Chuckling she trudged up the stairs to her room. One boot, then the other hit the floor as she tugged her shirt up over her head and started gathering up her laundry strewn about the floor. Jerry's just trying to be a nice guy, she should quit giving him shit all the time.

"What color is your hair naturally?" Came a woman's voice from behind.

Harm jumped nearly a foot off the ground, whirling around in shock. "Jesus fuck!" Grabbing the bat leaning by the wall near her bed she glared down the smaller woman with the pink and blue curls. "Lady you broke into the wrong persons place."

The woman was standing calmly, holding a box of hair dye in one hand. "Hair color?"

Harm paused, the tip of the bat lowering a bit. This chick broke into her place to ask about her hair? "Lady I dunno what you're on or what you're doing here but I'm gonna give you one chance to walk out and--"

"I'm here because someone sent my partner and I to find you, on behalf of your mother."

Eyes wide, the bat dropped to the floor with a clatter. "Excuse me?"

"Your mother. Well, I'm not one hundred percent sure you're who we're looking for but I'm fairly certain at this point. We've been watching you for a few days now. So far everything checks out but there's one more thing we need to test."

Her mind was racing. Twenty six years she'd wondered about her parents. Who were they? Where were they from? Why the fuck did they dump her in the middle of some god-forsaken forest when she was a baby? "...test? Like... blood or...?"

"No, nothing like that." The woman tossed the empty box of dye back in the trash. "My name is Sweetie Drops, I'm an Agent in her majesty's secret service."

"...like James Bond?" The hell kind of name was Sweetie Drops? Probably a call sign like Iceman or Cheeseburger like they use in the military.

"Sort of, sure." Harm tensed as the agent reached into her coat, but relaxed as she pulled out a small black case. "What color is your hair, Harmony?"

Harm flinched. No one called her Harmony. But she'd let it slide. "It's Harm. And..." Clearly struggling. "It's uh... lavender. With these pink and orange streaks, highlights I guess." She said, barely audible.

"And your eyes? I see the contact cases on the sink in there."

Her breathing was picking up. Was this really happening? Were her parents looking for her? Had they been looking for her all this time? Maybe she was kidnapped or... "I ah..." Reaching up she pulled the lens from her right eye. A very vivid sunset colored orange.

"Very good. Alright, Harm. Please open this case." Offering it to the much larger woman.

Who accepted curiously. "...what is it?"

"The last test to see if you're who we're looking for."

Slight hesitation before she flicked the latch up with her thumb and eased the lid open. "Jesus this is a big rock."

"Pick it up please."

Glancing from the watching woman to the large, magneta colored gem Harm gingerly lifted it between thumb and forefinger. A keening sound rang out as the gem began to glow with a bright inner light. The sound surprised her and she almost dropped it, but she managed to hang onto it. "What... what is this?"

"That, Harm is the Element of Magic. One of the Elements of Harmony. One of your elements. It wouldn't react like that for anypony else."

"Elements... magic? I don't understand. What does this have to do with my mother? Is this hers?"

"No, but that does belong to the one who sent us. Or it did? I don't know how it all works. A bit beyond my pay grade, but if you'd come with me across the street, I'll tell you everything I know."

Gently placing the gem back in the case, Harm closed the lid. "Do you know my mother?"

"I do."

"What..." Licking her lips. "What's she like?"

"Well..."

======== Canterlot Castle ========

"Anything else on the schedule, Raven?" The solar diarch of Equestria sipped her tea delicately as she enjoyed the sight of the castle staff busily setting up for the coming Hearthswarming festivities.

"No, Princess I do believe we're all wrapped up for the day." The small black maned earth pony smiled as she rolled up the sheaf of papers. "We have an hour until dinner if you have anything you'd like to do?"

"Hm." Another small sip. "Has Twilight emerged from the library?"

"Yes, Princess. She went right from the library to her castle in Ponyville."

Eyebrows rose in surprise. "And she didn't say goodbye?"

Her personal assistant shrugged. "It would appear not, Princess. Shall I prepare a sternly worded letter in response to this gross oversight of proper Princess protocol?"

A gentle laugh. Really Raven lived to hear that laugh. She did anything she could to get it out of the Princess. "If you can say that five times quickly, yes."

"Alas, bested again. I'm terrible with tongue twisters."

"I believe I'll dig out the decorations for the Hearthswarming tree, then. Luna loves to help decorate it with me. You're excused for the remainder of the day, Raven."

The mare dipped into a low bow. "Of course, Princess. I'll see you first thing in the morning."

Celestia smiled as she watched the mare go. Raven was the latest in a very long line of assistants, but so far she was shaping up to be one of the best. Setting the empty tea cup on the tray and giving a pleasant nod to the maid who hurried to clear it away the Princess rose and made her way back inside.

As she made her way to one of the many store rooms she couldn't help but wonder what Twilight was sneaking around the castle about. Probably dredging through old books for some obscure line or another about something she loved in her younger years so she could provide the perfect Hearthswarming present. Really it didn't matter what she got her, it's the thought that counts.

The filly was like a daughter to her. She allowed herself a rueful smile. Technically Twilight Sparkle hadn't been a filly for quite a few years now, but still she couldn't shake the image of the smiling little foal eager to learn. Perhaps she should get her a gift to remind her how much she meant to her. After all, there was no way Twilight could ever out do Celestia in terms of Hearthswarming surprises.

Author's Note:

Something new, sorry to folks waiting for updates on other things. It's been super long, I know. I kinda realized I was having trouble writing because I wasn't writing what I wanted so that's what I'm doing now. Hopefully this reignites the spark to continue my other stuff!

(also hopefully people enjoy this as well)