• Published 12th Apr 2016
  • 15,146 Views, 12,615 Comments

Three More Things! - Tatsurou

Uncle Chan tries to balance running an antique shop, fighting demons, and being a Chi Wizard with being a loving Uncle to his nephew, his somewhat removed niece...and three little ponies who drive him straight up the wall.

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Conservation of Magic

"Pony!" Jade shouted once again, pointing the Monkey Talisman at herself. In a flash of light, the horse talisman was clutched in the teeth of a tiny brown and white horse for a brief few seconds before an angry whinny reversed the transformation. "Aw, come on! I've been trying to get this to work for hours! Why isn't it working?"

"It's doing what you tell it to do," Sweetie Belle explained softly. "I mean, I didn't mean komodo when I said dragon, but that's what I got."

"But how do I be more specific?" Jade asked curiously. "I tried pegasus, but I was this big white thing that looked like a horse. I even tried pegasus pony, but I was just a smaller version! And it shorts out every time I say Qi Lin."

"Have you tried unicorn?" Scootaloo offered, gesturing at Sweetie Belle.

Jade frowned, crossing her arms. "I did. I wound up a white horse-looking thing with a horn. Not like Sweetie Belle, even when I said 'unicorn pony'. What's it take to get this thing to turn me into something like you girls?"

Apple Bloom shrugged. "Maybe the magic just don't work that way. Maybe it's somethin' about us that the Talisman can't handle."

"But it transformed you into a Storm Dragon!" Jade complained angrily, waving the Talisman towards Scootaloo while gesticulating at Apple Bloom.

A light flashed out of the Talisman, and Scootaloo stared down at her transformed state. "Sweet!" she purred happily as she spread her much larger wings.

"There's a thought," Jade murmured. She pointed the Talisman at herself. "Storm Dragon!"

The light flashed out, arced around Jade, and struck Sweetie Belle. "Where's my horn?" she screeched out, starting to panic as she pawed at her forehead with her claws, her sense of magic seriously twisted. "Where's my horn?"

"Change back!" Jade called out quickly, reversing both transformations with blasts of light. "You okay, Sweetie?"

"I don't think I like this Talisman very much..." Sweetie whimpered, putting her forehooves to her horn with relief. "I'm gonna go sit in the corner where I'm not in the crossfire."

"Don't be such a baby, Sweetie," Scootaloo scolded. "It wasn't that-"

"What if you'd been turned into something without wings?" Sweetie interrupted acidly.

Scootaloo's eyes went wide, and Cumulo shot up to the ceiling out of range at her silent mental command.

"Uh...?" Jade asked, confused.

"Accordin' to the book Uncle's got, horn and wings are the primary magical foci for Sweetie and Scoot, and those like 'em," Apple Bloom explained. "Also a direct link to the magical fields. Without 'em...it'd be like suddenly being unable ta see color, or movement, but more so. Really not fun for the brain."

"Oh..." Jade gasped softly. "I'm...I'm so sorry, Sweetie-"

"Not your fault," Sweetie Belle hastened to assure her. "...still gonna stay over here until the Talisman is safe in the vault."

"Well, there goes my other idea..." Jade murmured softly. "For you two, anyway..."

"Other idea?" Apple Bloom asked curiously.

Jade rubbed her chin thoughtfully. "Well...it might work for you still, Apple Bloom." She leveled the Talisman at the red-headed filly. "Human!"

The beam of light shot out, split around Apple Bloom, and struck a broom directly behind her, transforming it into a wooden sculpture of a human.

"Stupid useless hunk of magic junk!" Jade snapped out angrily, hurling the Talisman across the room before turning around and sinking into a sulk. The Talisman flew right through the warp into the Section 13 apartment, followed by a 'thunk' and a pained exclamation from Jackie.

Apple Bloom blinked in confusion. "Uh...don'tcha think that was a bit extreme?"

"Probably," Jade murmured grumpily. "But...I know how much it bugs you that you can't control your magic, and all three of you that you have to wear the pendants to go around when that just means you're always overlooked. I thought...I thought I could turn myself into a pony like the three of you so we could spend time together...or that I could turn the three of you into humans so you could walk around with me without the pendants, and get noticed for your skills. So you could show how special you are...instead of everyone overlooking you as 'normal'..." She blinked her eyes, refusing to let the tears at the corners fall.

Apple Bloom, Sweetie Belle, and Scootaloo exchanged glances, then swiftly moved to Jade's side to wrap her in a three way embrace.

"I thought...magic could finally be used to fix something..." Jade whimpered, hugging them back. "I mean...I know Scootaloo's attempt didn't work out...but this wasn't that big..."

"Still a lesson you needed," Uncle offered softly as he stepped into the room, a tray of cookies and sweet tea in his hands as he sat down amongst them. "It is why I insisted Jackie let you try."

"Uncle?" Jade asked in confusion, wiping away the tears she hadn't yet shed as she accepted the offered sweets. "What do you mean?"

"You quest for magic eagerly," Uncle explained. "Not bad thing in of itself...but you must exercise caution and wisdom. You see magic as a fix all, but that is not so. Magic has its own rules, and limitations. Different from those of physics, but just as limiting in their own way." He rested a hand on Apple Bloom's head. "Apple Bloom learned this in bringing her own magic under control." Another hand stroked Sweetie Belle. "Sweetie learned this as she struggled to master chopsticks."

"Uncle!" Sweetie Belle whined with an embarrassed blush as Apple Bloom and Scootaloo giggled. Jade just tilted her head in confusion.

"But things came easily for both of you as you've adjusted," Uncle explained as he pulled Scootaloo and Jade into his arms. "This is why I let you both experiment with Horse and Monkey Talismans. This is most important lesson of magic, and one only truly understood when experienced. Only so much can be gained through instruction."

All four girls snuggled up in Uncle's embrace. "Not exactly a happy lesson..." Jade grumbled softly.

"The important ones seldom are," Uncle allowed wearily.

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