• Published 25th Jun 2016
  • 6,178 Views, 377 Comments

The Wedding Aftermath - Queen Sanguine Dreams



Queen Chrysalis' hive has been scattered to the winds, but not all Changelings serve Chrysalis.

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Isn't What It Looks Like

"Scootaloo, I know you're eager to befriend the fire ponies, but they're more than a bit 'tied up' at the moment!" Honestly, this filly is going to be the death of me. The second she saw Ponyville on fire, she screamed and then lept from the chariot, directly into a plummet. If I didn't have wings and magic to catch her, she would go well with ketchup as 'Scoota-Nuggets'.

"I've gotta find them!"

Oh, way to be direct, Scootaloo. Excellent. "Find whom?"

"Applebloom and-," she ducked as some poor cabbage merchant flew over her head, "Sweetie Belle!"

Really. In a war zone?

Sure! Lets go with that. Maybe she'll get a cutie mark in 'Nam flashbacks.

Nambury. The famous battle of the twelve hives? No? Hmmph, you should read a book or two.

Caught in my musings, Scootaloo had done the 'sensible' thing and run off again. Ducking from upturned vendor's wagon to various bench, I stealthily moved around several soldiers in fancy runic armor. Some griffons, some Minotaur, some ponies, and a changeling or seventeen. I had no idea why any of this was happening, but I remembered Queen Song's own shell had the same runic symbols. At that point, I realized that this was probably some game that Aether and his daughters were playing, and ceased my silly sneaking around business. Checking down a dark alleyway (Wait, how do these alleyways even get dark in broad daylight?) I thought I heard some pony in distress. Pretty understandable with their village being raided and everypony being chained and bound to a ridiculous level.

"Hello? Are you alright?" I called out to the hunched over figure.

Sadly, said figure was not somepony in distress. It was in fact a Thestral in disguise. My ears told me of this with great accuracy.

"Screeeee!" It screeched. Yes, I called a Thestral an 'it'. When I can someday scream that loudly, I'll call it a... whatever it is. The proper name!

Clutching my ears and dropping to the dirt path beneath me, I tried to prevent permanent hearing loss by randomly blasting stun spells in the Thestral's vague direction.

"I'm going to send a letter to my army of lawyer orphans if you don't cease this instant!" I shouted, wiggling around and attempting to blast the screeching obnoxiousness with fangs that was now two Thestrals, one with armor.

They seemed taken aback by that for a moment, though I don't know if it was from the unexpected nature of my verbal jab, or the fact that I might possess such a formidable weapon in a courtroom.

Could you say 'guilty' to several cute looking foals in suits with pouting faces, puppy dog eyes, and a commanding knowledge of the legal system?

Something I hadn't been expecting then decided to fly right in front of me and land with more armor than anybeing had right to possess. Princess Luna, in all of her flowing star-mane glory, dropped down in the center of her two Thestrals. Her regular coat was hidden behind midnight purple armoring, segmented and yet regal. A crescent moon emblem glowed brightly from the center of her chest, and only her face was exposed. Her mane and tail, not following the laws of any logic, decided that they didn't feel like staying in her armor and flowed freely in their cheating magical breeze from a Mane and Tail commercial.

Stardust sold Separately.

"Queen Aze? Why hath thou cast thy lot with these vagabonds?" Questioned the Princess of ridiculously archaic speech.

"Huh!?" I shouted in reply. I wasn't really deaf, but I figured I could at least have some amusement at her expense after they screamed at me.

She made a face of upset, and whispered to her Thestral bodyguards. They seemed apologetic, but still proud of their efforts to disable a Changeling Queen regardless.

A field of magic surrounded my head, coming from Luna's horn. Not really knowing what she was doing and still wary of her guards, I sent a stun spell at her with a blast of my own magenta colored magic. Despite my efforts, her armor gave the equivalent of a magical guffaw; deflecting my spell harmlessly into the dirt to the Princess' side. Her eyes narrowed in annoyance at me, and I did my best to initiate Operation: Cute Shield.

I smiled sheepishly, let my limbs go loose (As she was holding me in the air by the head with magic) and buzzed my wings a little. A nervous chuckle, combined with an embarrassed blush (completely fabricated. Have you ever tried to blush through carapace?) disarmed her successfully.

For about five seconds.

"We know you can hear us, Queen Aze. Explain yourself!" she commanded, dropping me to the ground. Hey, at least it worked! I wasn't Changeling Soup and I still had all my pieces intact. My ego can repair itself later with some ice cream and tea.

"Do you want to hear the part where I was chasing- I mean, trying to find- Scootaloo, or the part where this isn't what it looks like?" Engage sheepish smile version two, combined with nervous sideways glances and the tapping of fore hooves as I sit. Perfect. She won't know what hit her!

"You are a part of this attack upon Equestria?" Luna questioned with threatening tone, her eyes narrowing at me.

"No! I'm not attacking anypony!" I quickly yelped, raising my hooves in surrender. I might be a Queen, but I'm not built to be anywhere near as combative as Chrysalis. Luna could obliterate me with a thought, and I was in no way going to have a chance of stopping her. My strategy for surviving the wrath of the moon then fell to appearing as weak and helpless as possible, so that she would either not think me worth the trouble or become bored. Besides, It's against my life goals to kill/hurt/maim/injure anybeing. I can't make friends with corpses.

Eh, most of the time. San'se was fairly respectable.

"Then what is your purpose for coming to Ponyville, during an attack?" Luna accused.

"Scootaloo!" was my blunt answer. I honestly had no other reason for being in this dreadful town of sticks.

"Secure her."

"Wait, what?"

Before I knew what had happened, I was dog piled by the two Thestrals as Luna chuckled to herself. They wrapped me in some kind of thin metal strips that I couldn't get off, and was even more annoyed by the fact that they had tied knots through the holes in my hooves. I couldn't shape shift anyway, due to my promise to Twilight, but still. It was the sheer audacity of the thing. Acting cute and helpless had served its purpose, as I wasn't turned into scrambled Queen, but I was now immobile. There was no way I could rescue Scootaloo from herself, and my attempts at flight simply ended with me banging into walls.

"Magnificent." I grumbled.

*****

Perhaps ten minutes had passed before I heard a deafening shout.

"Fear the night, for the shadows have come for thee!"

Luna was a Proto-Drama-Queen.

She was swooping down over the heads of everybeing below, causing shadows to come from the walls and buildings nearby with some kind of night-magic. Ponies were running away from the spooky shadow monsters, Minotaur were falling on their face trying to attack them; Griffons decided that this was hilarious, and the Changelings were just plain confused. I had inch-wormed my way out of the dark alleyway and around the corner to watch the activity in the main square of town.

All of the village ponies had been tied up as I had, and brought in front of a large stage. There was some uniformed unicorn mare on said stage, trying to keep everybeing calm while Luna let out a thousand years of pent up feelings on the poor henchbeings. Spectral wasps were scaring the cutiemarks off of a few ponies; others were fighting nightmarish lamp posts brought to life, and yet more were running away from a picnic bench from tartarus.

Luna must get really, really bored.

Then a thought occurred to me. I have magic. Why have I not simply untied myself? Using said bolt of inspiration from the blue, I focused my magic on all the knots, loops and otherwise obnoxious things that held me in place. They unraveled surprisingly well, given that I had been expecting some anti-magic rope just to upset me.

Dusting myself off, I then ignored all of the chaos before me and set out to find Scootaloo. Maybe she would go to Rarity's house for Sweetie Belle, and the apple farm for Applebloom? Eh, it's as good a theory as any to start with. Might as well head for the fashion shop.

*****

All around me were unfamiliar faces in progressively damaged places. A certain shop that insisted that Quills and Sofa's be sold together had exactly half of it destroyed due to the battle between Luna and the Forces of Evil. I wasn't going to get involved in all of that, because why should I? I had a mission to protect Scootaloo, and there was one best way to find a missing pony.

<Everyling~> I sang into the hivemind.

<Yes, our Queen?>

<I have a certain orange coated, purple mane'd pegasus filly that I need to find in Ponyville. I need your help to find her, but there is also a problem. Luna, the second Diarch of Equestria, is currently shouting her head off at the Forces of Evil. Is there some way that we could find this filly, named Scootaloo, while also saving my son from embarassing himself against the pony that controls the moon? His forces are being devastated, and it would just be better for us overall if we weren't directly involved.>

<My Queen, a suggestion.> Asked Lanius.

<Yes, go ahead.>

<We could disguise ourselves as the Royal Guard, and route the Forces of Evil so that we may find the filly you look for.>

<Wouldn't that make us an enemy to my son? From the Diarchs' view, they would see us as either an ally or an impostor if we assume the forms of their guard. On the other fang, this would be excellent media for their guard as well...>

<Perhaps we could simply disguise ourselves as random ponies from neighboring towns, coming to aid?> Gaius suggested.

<Yes, but how would these hypothetical ponies have heard of the trouble? At best they would assume a fire had occured. They wouldn't come by the thousands.>

<Then assuming the role of the Royal Guard would appear the best option for finding 'Scootaloo'.>

<Yes. Everyling close to Ponyville, transform into an indescript member of the Royal Guard. There may be ponies with cameras flying by. Group at the border of the Everfree Forest and give me an update when you are assembled.>

<Long live the Queen!>

Returning to the battlefield, I realised very quickly why I need to remember to not enter the hivemind in a warzone.

There were random pieces of debris on top of me, dust everywhere and possibly something was on fire. If I needed to breathe, I would've suffocated. If I needed to move, I would have to blast this detrius away from me as well.

Deciding to do exactly that, I unleashed a blast of unguided magic to act as an improvised bomb to anybeing nearby. Thankfully, nothing was around to be injured, although the Pink One's lair was impaled by several planks of wood. She would either be distraught from the damage, or elated at the idea of turning the building into a place that resembled a different pastry.

It was going to take awhile to navigate, as craters and blown out buildings were common now. Charred wood, scorched earth and several mannequins giving the place a very dreary and morbid appearance.

Certainly an improvement! The place was dreadful before. Now it had history and character!

Although, this was probably going to be called 'The Battle of Ponyville' or something equally dreadful.

Oh, Right! Scootaloo!

Should definetly focus.

*****

At this point, thirty minutes later, I was beginning to doubt if Scootaloo was in the town at all. I knew she wouldn't be dead, because of sone unseen cosmic force that denied all untimely ends of ponies in general. Even when Discord decided to unleash his power out of boredom, the worst case in Equestria was rugburn. How somepony got rugburn with a coat of fur, I have no idea. Dont even ask about the horrors everybeing else suffered.

Poor Queen Ra...

Anyway, the moment of action had come. The hive was assembled and disguised appropriately, and Luna was entirely distracted with tormenting the Forces of Evil. I don't know why she insisted on engaging an army by herself, with two guards. Then again, I don't have the power to control the moon. Maybe she's just that good.

Then I imagined an angry Celestia.

Mentally fleeing in terror from that molten thought, I refocused on the task at hoof.

<Everyling, you are ready?>

<Yes our Queen!>

<Very good! I will need you all to split into three groups. Earth Pony disguises will take center, form a wedge. Pegasus, Take to the air and sweep in from the flanks. I know that we cannot control the weather, so you'll have to improvise. Unicorns, follow behind the Earth Ponies and provide support and covering spells to knock them off balance before the Wedge enters their lines. After their first line is broken, find Luna and offer aid. In the mean time, Pegasus should observe from the skies for Scootaloo or her friends. Unicorns should unbind the townsfolk, and Earth Ponies should defend both Unicorns and the townsfolk.>

<Excuse me, my Queen?>

<Yes Gaius?>

<Excuse my bluntness, but when did you learn Equine military tactics?>

<You expect your Queen to be unable to defend her hive?>

<N-no, it's just unexpected... coming from you.>

<I may not understand social rituals of mammals or griffons or otherwise, but that does not make me uneducated. I may be less than three years old, but I have millenia of combined learning passed down from Queen to Queen. I understand where your concerns originate, but do not worry. The hive endures, Gaius.>

<So say we all!>

*****

Luna, having been fighting the Forces of Evil and doing quite well, was completely awestruck with nostaligia when she heard it. A thunder of hooves, a whirlwind of wings, thousands of ponies all yelling at the top of their lungs in a glorious battlecry that caused her to pause. She had to wipe a tear from her eye upon seeing it.

A massive wedge formation, covering the fields and orchards of Ponyville. Earth Ponies of her sister's guard leading the charge like the days of old, backed by Unicorns who were launching bolts of magic out in front of their fellow soldiers. Scanning the sky from her position on top of the schoolhouse, she spotted two great wings swooping down from the sky.

The Alicorn Formation.

Earth Ponies for the strength of body, the bulk and force of the charge. Pegasus, the two wings that carried the might of the body to drive it home, and the Unicorns, the horn to impale and eviscerate the foe with no quarter given.

She needed a moment.

*****

Garotte, seeing this as well, was rapidly reconsidering her choice in career. She couldn't blend in with the locals, as they all knew her. If she didn't run now, she would be captured, imprisoned and interrogated. Anybeing that chose to stand their ground against the approaching wall of doom would meet the same fate if they weren't lucky enough to die on impact.

Have you ever been bucked by a stampede of Earth Ponies? Thought not.

Garotte then decided that she liked her head exactly where it was, and promptly exited the town in a collected manner.

Screaming.

*****

Scootaloo had found her friend in their clubhouse, which nobeing had thought to check. Her friends were worried about their families and those they knew, but Scootaloo had told them that they were only tied up and uninjured. This caused them to consider a path in combat rescue, but the deafening stampede combined with battlecry lead them to keep their heads down and hope for the best.

*****

"Princess Celestia! A report from Princess Luna!"

Dearest Sister,

Oh! Thou hast left us in most joyous of spirits!

We did not anticipate you would send the guard in its entirety to aid us, and their display is breathtaking. A perfectly executed Alicorn Formation! Such precision has not been seen by our eyes in centuries!

This is the best gift we could have received, beloved sister.

Happy Alicorn Anniversary,
Princess Luna!
xoxo

Celestia lowered the letter, her brow furrowed in absolute confusion. Blinking, she turned to Flash Sentry.

"Have we mobilized the guard while I wasn't looking?" She asked with careful tone.

"No?" Celestia shot a glare at him. "I-I mean no! We have not, Princess Celestia." He was shaking in his armor.

Who would have thousands of ponies on hoof to respond to such a threat?

*****

Queen Aze had taken the field, as she had never left it.

Where would I find nymphs if they wanted to hide? A hole in the hive? Some out of the way place noling would look? Perhaps a more obvious place, known to myself and few others? I will have to ask their caretakers.

Her changelings, disguised as various Royal Guard, had absolutely demolished the Forces of Evil. They numbered barely five hundred, and her hive had brought its number of three thousand, each evenly split between the races of pony, crashing down on their heads.

Imagine if those changelings actually had the inherent magics of the ponies themselves...

Shaking her head of the thought, she wove her way through the obliterated paths of the town, attempting to find the ponies in the town square. There was still some fighting as the town became encircled, and the last few raiders were brought down by combined might of magic, strength and sheer numbers.

<Everyling, we must be swift. There is a limited amount of time before the Diarchs come to their senses and we are found out. The only trace we leave will be in memory. A legend of an army suddenly appearing to defend Equestria is better than figuring out it was us all along. When we depart, add a shimmering effect to your disguises and blind onlookers with a flash of light.>

<Yes, our Queen!>

Returning to the present, she was confronted by a very suspicious and upset group of mares. Six of them to be exact.

"What are you doing here?!" Twilight shouted.

Deploying wince, side glance and lowering of head.

"Trying to find Scootaloo?"

She relaxed a bit, but was still suspicious. "Why is Scootaloo here? Doesn't she live with Aether now?"

Raise head, nervous tone and... wait, what else went with those? Eyebrow wiggle?

"She wanted to visit her friends?"

This caused all of them to be extremely confused.

"Nevermind, I'm still learning expressions." Aze's face returned to it's trademark blank.

"Oh heavens, Sweetie Belle!" Rarity suddenly exclaimed, which caused Applejack to shout about Applebloom.

"Do you know where they would hide?" I asked.

"The Clubhouse! Duh!" The Pink One chirped, bouncing presumably towards said house of trees.

Sharing a look of some kind, we decided to follow her.

*****

Gaius, taking the form and appearance of a Trottingham Unicorn, was confronted by the Lunar Diarch.

"You there. Are you the leader of this charge?" She asked, walking towards him and flanked by two Thestrals.

Think fast!

"Yes, Mi'lady!" He saluted.

To his suprise, she returned his salute with a powerful grin. "Your leadership is to be given the highest of praise, commander. Would you tell us your name?"

Oh no, what would be a good name!? She's staring!

"G-Gaius, Mi'lady." Pony feathers.

Luna raised an eyebrow in unexpected suprise. "Gaius? We've not heard such a name since the days of Commander Hurricane."

Oh! The Queen's plan!

<Everyling, we must leave. Begin shimmering!>

"Mi'lady, what do you mean, 'since' Commander Hurricane? Has he gone somewhere?" Gaius said, as he began to shimmer in a ghostly manner.

A look of shock dawned on Luna's face, witnessing their dissapearing forms. "Hold, Spirit! Why have you risen? Who commands thee?!"

A combined blinding flash of light forced the Lunar Diarch to shield her eyes, and when she had finally recovered, all of the soldiers had vanished. Only the townsponies and the destroyed town remained.

"What in Tartarus?"

*****

Gaius and his Hivemates however, would've been gasping for air if they needed to breathe.

"Too close!"

"Way too close!"

"Never again!"

*****

"Applebloom, y'all alright in there?" Applejack called out as Aze and The Six approached the house of trees.

Dissapointingly, it was more of a shack attached to the side of a tree. Oh, my expectations.

"Applejack?" A cautious yet excited voice replied from within.

"Is Sweetie Belle and Scootaloo with you?" Rarity called.

"It's them, they came for us!" Sweetie Belle cheered, and the three fillies then stormed out of their tree-shack.

"And... Queen Aze?" Sweetie added.

I nodded politely. At leadt I hope I did. "Yes. I asked for your whereabouts."

"Why?" Applebloom asked.

"I was searching for Scootaloo here," I motioned an upturned hoof towards said filly, "Because she wanted to visit your town to see you. When she saw the town burning, she lept from our chariot and I've bern chasing her since. Scootaloo, have you discussed my offer with them yet?"

Scootaloo looked 'nervous', as she quickly glanced between her friends and the Six. "Uhh... No?"

"Would you want me to explain it, then?"

Twilight became very suspicious. "Explain what? What deal?"

"Well, Immortality of a sort." I replied, enjoying her display of complete confusion. "It comes with a price, if you consider it one."

"What price?" Asked Fluttershy.

"Why, becoming part of the hive!"

Author's Note:

This chapter took a while to write because of frequent headaches and personal drama. Hope you enjoy!

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