• Published 16th Jul 2012
  • 5,646 Views, 349 Comments

Secret of Andalantis - Fizzy Orange

Lunaverse, On a trip to the beach Ditzy dissapears underwater, adventure ensue. COMPLETE!

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Chapter 8

Trixie was getting tired of swimming all over the ocean, but Lyra was in potentially grave danger and she felt like Bon Bon would not appreciate her voicing her complaint. Of course Bon Bon had spent the last hours sitting on her rear on the boat while Trixie and the others had kept busy, but pointing that out felt hazardous to Trixie, somehow. In the end she elected to suffer in silence for the sake of friendship. Trixie being the only one to clearly see the threads of magic they were following meant she was at the front of their pack, and it was clear with the way Bon Bon and Ditzy were sticking close to her that they wished they could speed ahead.

“This way!” called Ditzy, banking to the right.

Everypony followed but Bon Bon was the first to speak up.


“The current’s stronger over there, it’ll take us toward the island faster! I can feel it,” the pegasus answered, adding the last part to silence further questioning.

And she was right, only a few meters off and Trixie could feel the water pushing against her back. It certainly made travelling less tiresome.

“Can you still track Lyra?” Asked Bon Bon.

“Oh yeah, we’re not far enough to lose sight of her magic,” said Trixie, keeping her eyes on the trail.

Truth was, even if the magic were to dissipate, it was such a straight forward spell that they would just need to keep heading in the same direction and would eventually get to Lyra.

Trixie just hoped Lyra would be able to hold on until then.

The tense silence of the swim was suddenly broken when a small green shape came out of nowhere and tackled Dusky Jack.

“CHARY! EVERPONY! SWIM! I’LL HOLD THEM OFF!” The newcomer shouted, desperately trying to push against the bigger male merpony.

“What is this, Some sort of ambush? You treacherous seaponies!” Complained Scylla, shaking a hoof at her seapony rival.

“Calm down Scylla! Sea Cucumber, it’s alright!” pleaded Charybdis, obviously stressed by the situation but still acting with a certain amount of calm.

Dusky, meanwhile, looked rather dumbfounded at what to do with the little green Seapony bumping repeatedly against him. The new seapony looked a lot like an inverted color version of Lute Turtle, same shades of green and everything… but the most surprising thing to Trixie, who did not turn off her magic sight, was the way magic clung to her form.

“Sea Cucumber! Stop it! You don’t understand!” pleaded Sea Racer, wrapping his tail around the other pony’s midsection and pulling her away. “They’re not our enemies.”

“What? That’s impossible!” Replied Sea Cucumber, clearly confused.

Ditzy swam up to the diminutive female and gave her a big hug. “I was worried about you! Why did you leave on your own?”

“I’m sorry, I was just so sad… I wasn’t thinking straight… what’s going on?”

While Ditzy and the seaponies explained the new situation, and Zizanie’s theory, Trixie swam up to the white unicorn.

“I don’t think she is what she claims to be,” whispered Trixie.

“No kidding,” replied Zizanie sarcastically, “I spotted her five minutes before she pretended to attack foolishly. She’s been following us. I’d bet you five hundred bits that she’ll try to convince us to turn back.”

“You don’t know the half of it,” simply said Trixie. “She’s wrapped in some sort of transmutation magic. This isn’t her real form.”

Lyra’s instrument appeared in a flash of golden magic after a long minute of concentration. She felt a little dizzy after pulling her lyre from so far away so she took a couple of seconds to settle down while her rapt audience was stood in silent amazement.

“That…was…incredible! Real magic! Can you believe it?” asked Rock Beauty, turning to Sea Shanty.

“It was so beautiful!” simply replied the seapony.

“You’re incredible Lyra!” added the merpony.

Lyra, now feeling better, gave her two friends a cocky smile. “The Majestic and Lovely Lyra Heartstring is always ready to entertain!” she declared, before breaking into a hearty laugh.

Rock Beauty looked at her aquamarine companion and cocked an eyebrow. Sea Shanty just shrugged in response the best she could.

“I guess I needed some levity… sorry about that. Feel free to slap me if I ever start referring to myself in the third person. Now, it’s time to perform our prisoner’s duty and make with the escape!”

“How?” asked Sea Shanty.

“Oooh! Can you blast the door down and use it to knock out the guard on the other side? Can you turn us into ghosts to let us pass through the walls? Or, even better, teleport us away?” As Rock Beauty, obviously excited.

“In short order: yes but it’s too noisy, I don’t know anyone with that spell and I don’t know that one. I think we’ll just use some subtlety here,” explained Lyra, beckoning the pair to follow her up to the ceiling of their prison.

The three were standing a pony height below the spot where the massive stone slabs that made their prison were leaning on the piece of ruin they had been asked to study. A smaller, but still enormous, stone block had been added to block a large gap in the structure just at the top of the wall.

“I’m going to use a spell and move the stone here out of the way, while holding up the one leaning on it. When that happens we’ll have to quickly swim out, I’ll put things back and no one will know how we got out,” the unicorn quickly explained.

Lyra got into position and began to strum her instrument with her hooves, but after a few notes she frowned.

Sea Shanty swam closer to her, “Is something wrong?”

“It’s just… I can’t… I can’t swim AND play my lyre at the same time, it’s messing with my timing,” she admitted.

“No problem!” declared Rock Beauty, positioning herself beneath the unicorn, offering the space between her dorsal fin and her neck as a seat. “You do your magic-y thing and me and Sea Shanty will bring you outside!”

Lyra nodded and began to play, closing her eyes.

Basic unicorn telekinesis has its limit, both in weight and number of manipulated elements at once. Some ponies are better with one or the other, or sometimes both. Lyra had seen Rarity use her telekinesis on up to fifty items at once in her shop, though all of them were quite small. Meanwhile she knew a pony in Canterlot who could move a whole chariot without breaking a sweat but had trouble holding up a parchment while manipulating a quill to write on it. When a unicorn wants to move things somehow exceeding her natural limits she has to use a spell instead. Even with her university education Lyra had trouble explaining to non-unicorn the difference between natural telekinesis and a telekinetic spell. Suffice to say the difference was academic in many ways until the moment you needed to move a giant boulder while holding up one weighing more than your house.

Luckily Lyra knew a spell or two for just this sort of occasion. She set up a simple bass line, using its pitch and rhythm as the template for the spell allowing her to hold the top boulder in place, then, with her other hoof, she began to play the glissando of the telekinetic spell that allowed her to gently move the other one aside. Not a whole lot, but enough for their little group to slip through.

Lyra didn’t even bother to open her eye as her new friend carried her out of their cage, held stable with some help from Sea Shanty. She quickly put the boulder back in place and added a little flourish to the music before cutting off the base spell. That had been more taxing than she had expected at first. It seemed like she hadn’t recovered all the magic she had poured into her water breathing spell just yet. It would probably be prudent to not waste any more juice. Ether plants don’t grow on the ocean floor.

“I didn’t know spells could sound so good!” commented Sea Shanty once Lyra had opened her eyes again.

“The music acts like a guide for my magic,” explained Lyra, “most unicorns do spells by… how should I put it… molding their magic in a certain way, like making something out of clay… I’m just not really good at that, so instead I use my music as a reference. To keep with the clay analogy it’s like I sculpt an object out of wood and then apply the clay to it to make the object I want.”

“Why would most unicorns not do like you? It sounds really good!” asked Rock Beauty.

Lyra shrugged. “It’s just not the fastest way to cast a spell, plus not everypony is good with music like me. To some unicorns magic is an art, to others it’s more like math, everypony is different.”

Sea Shanty looked on to the field of slaves sifting through the sea floor, “So what do we do now?”

The unicorn and the merpony looked at each other and shrugged.

“Let’s see if we can sneak closer to the shackled ponies and free them, we’ll improvise once we get there,” suggested Lyra.

Rock Beauty pumped a hoof “Alright, let’s jam!”

The white unicorn hadn’t expected that news.

“What do you mean she’s not a seapony?” asked Zizanie in a hushed tone, “What is she then?”

“I don’t know… it’s not like your amateur illusions,” began Trixie, “I can see she’s been changed but there’s nothing underneath the spell, it’s pure transmutation. Really powerful stuff, it clings to her like a layer of sticky taffy on a baked potato.”

Zizanie repressed a shudder at Trixie’s bizarre culinary analogy and moved the conversation along. “So what do we do? Do you want to play along and try to spoil whatever trap she’s cooking?”

Trixie shook her head. “Nah, I say we destabilize her. If we confront her and break her spell she’ll panic and make mistakes. Whoever she and her co-conspirators are, they’ve been in control for too long. Time to shake it up a bit.”

The white unicorn blinked “Surprisingly I agree with you, for once. Can you break her spell?”

“Me? No way! What about that trick you used to break my illusions and make my horn vanish for a while?”

Zizanie looked visibly disturbed by the mention of how their previous encounter had ended. Using that particular ability came at a cost too great for Zizanie. The last time she had used it in anger and greatly regretted it. Normally she could spend months, or even years, without even considering her particular ‘gift’, as one may call it, but whenever she lost control of her emotions the lure of its power became impossible to resist. That way laid nothing but madness, chaos and pain. She looked away, pretending to study their target before she could speak again.

“No! I mean…no… it would cancel our water breathing spell too. “

She omitted the real reason why she didn’t want to use that ability, or even discuss its exact nature with the clueless blue mare, but she wasn’t lying. Cancelling magic wasn’t something one did with finesse. At least not without the already limited amount of control Zizanie possessed over that particular ability.

“I can’t make them see what I see either, they’d have no reason to believe me,” added Trixie.

“We’ll just have to trip her up verbally. Whatever story she got to share, it’s probably full of holes we can exploit to expose her. I’ll handle the clever web of words, and you try not to get in my way too much.“

Before Trixie could reply, Ditzy and Charybdis had finished filling in Sea Cucumber (or whoever she was) and the pegasus was bringing her over to the pair of unicorns for presentation.

“Sea Cucumber, this is my friend Trixie and… her acquaintance Zizanie,” explained Ditzy, struggling to introduce the white unicorn. “This is Sea Cucumber, she’s the one who saved me from the kaosharks and brought me to the seaponies’ hideout.”

If Sea Cucumber was surprised the unicorn was no longer in her Rarity guise, she did not let any hint betray that. Zizanie was impressed by the control over body language this newcomer had, of course it helped that the blackmailer was in no way familiar with seaponies to begin with.

“Real unicorns! That’s amazing! It’s nice to meet you!” said the seapony, shaking the two unicorns’ hoof.

That gesture struck Zizanie as another oddity, but she schooled her feature and hoped she was as good as this newcomer.

“Now that we’re done with introductions, let’s keep going, Lyra isn’t going to wait much longer!” added Bon Bon, obviously nervous.

“No! You can’t keep going! The kaosharks are this way!” declared Sea Cucumber.

Trixie and Zizanie shared a look. It was a tad disconcerting to be so easily on the same wavelength when it came to this matter. They still hated each other, and Trixie was still pretty much an amateur when it came to court games, but she knew how to fool an audience.

“They’re the ones we want to find, they have my Lyra!” replied Bon Bon.

“And your friend Sea Shanty!” added Ditzy.

“But it’s a trap! I saw them; they’re all there and ready to attack! You can’t trust the merponies they’ll turn on us!”

Dusky had to hold his leader back, as she angrily charged forward “What? How dare you say that after we lost two of our own to the last attack? You’re the suspicious one!”

Zizanie decided the time to act was now, lest the situation devolve and the tenuous alliance they had form collapse. Sea Racer was midway through hurling insults back at the merponies, but she wasn’t paying attention anymore. Now was the time to take control.

“Maybe we SHOULD listen to miss Sea Cucumber,” she declared, loud enough for everypony to take notice.

Bon Bon was obviously the first one to object, “You can’t be serious!”

“I always am, after all, this is the pony who saved our friend Ditzy from those kaosharks before! There’s probably tons of tricks she can teach us,” added Zizanie.

Sea Cucumber was actually taken aback by that comment. Zizanie allowed herself a small smirk before launching into the next part of her speech, but Trixie didn’t feel like letting somepony else hog the center stage.

“Oh yes the brave seapony who saved Ditzy! You must know everything there is to know about defeating those beasts! After all you took down two of them right?” said the blue unicorn, wrapping a forehoof around the small seapony’s shoulders. “A hero for the ages I’m sure!”

“Well… no… I … I didn’t beat them,” stammered Sea Cucumber, freeing herself from Trixie’s hoof “I just grabbed Ditzy and booked it!”

Trixie swam behind sea cucumber, disappearing from the seapony’s field of view for only a few seconds before reappearing on her other side. Zizanie could swear she saw the other unicorn just… flicker…

“That’s still very brave!” she said.

“Without you I wouldn’t be here,” pointed out Ditzy.

“Sea Cucumber isn’t my best scout for no reason, she can outrun any kaosharks.” Explained Charybdis.

“Or evade any of them!” added Sea Youaround.

“We could do with some evading tricks actually,” said Bon Bon.

Dusky Jack seemed interested by that train of thought “We know the kaosharks are ahead, we could maybe give them the slip and find their base!”

“HOWEVER!” suddenly shouted Trixie, taking control of the conversation before it drifted too far off subject.

All the other ponies looked at her like she had grown a second head. She allowed herself to bask in the attention for a second before continuing.

“However I doubt what you have to tell us would be useful…” she continued.

Sea Cucumber was shocked by that and looked ready to start crying “What? Why would you say something like that?”

“Because your story is bogus,” stated Zizanie, much to Trixie’s annoyance.

“This is preposterous! How dare you to aim such wild accusation at poor little Sea Cucumber?!” asked Charybdis, a tinge of anger creeping in her voice for the first time since Zizanie had met her.

Zizanie didn’t trust ponies who never got angry, so she took this as a good sign. Angry ponies were usually more honest, even if they still tried to lie. Trixie for her part ignore the outburst and turn to Sea Racer.

“Sea Racer, you’re a big strong stallion, why don’t you try to abscond with miss Doo here? And Bon Bon you give chase!”

“What are you getting at, dry pony?” asked Scylla.

“This is no time to play tag, Trixie!” complained Bon Bon.

“I think it’s the perfect time for this. It’s no time to walk into a dangerous situation if trust is too strained,” pointed out Zizanie, swimming next to the earth pony.

Charybdis took a stone cold expression and, without looking at him, gave Sea Racer the go ahead. Ditzy sighed but didn’t protest too much before going limp and letting Sea Racer grab her midsection with his prehensile tail.

“Now run! Run for you life!” Ordered Trixie.

Zizanie gave Bon Bon a push and the other mare took chase. It didn’t take that long for her to catch up to Sea Racer and tag him. It’s only once she did that she realized what it meant.

There was a pregnant silence floating around the group as everyone reached, some faster than other, the same conclusion as Trixie and Zizanie: there was no way the smaller Sea Cucumber could evade the pursuit of two kaosharks if Sea Racer couldn’t outrun a simple dry pony who doesn’t swim all that often. There was only one way Ditzy could have made it back to the Seapony hideout…

“Sea Cucumber…I…I can’t believe it…” began Charybdis, reeling from the feeling of betrayal.

“Tell them it’s a mistake!” added Ditzy, look between her savior and the two unicorns.

Sea Youaround and Sea Racer were stunned into silence at the realization.

The little seapony was trying it best to look confused and innocent, but everypony could see she was slowly inching away from the glare of the group.

“That’s…that’s not the same thing! Sea Racer’s obviously tired and…and I was on adrenaline…” she began to stammer.

“Kaosharks are much faster than miss Bon Bon,” simply said Scylla, surprisingly softly.

The merpony leader looked at her seapony equivalent and, for the first time in many years, a feeling of connection between the two was created. The feelings of hurt and betrayal visible on Charybdis’ face couldn’t be faked.

“I admit you’re pretty good kid, but you’ve been at the same gig for too long and adding Ditzy to your narrative disrupted your habits. You clearly improvised and got shoddy,” said Zizanie dramatically pointing a hoof toward the great seapony, “but there is no denying it now. It’s the only logical explanation! You, whoever you are, are working with the kaosharks!”

Sea Cucumber glanced at every member of their little group. The hurt seaponies, the suspicious, yet sympathetic, merponies, the disappointed Ditzy Doo, the stressed and angry Bon Bon, and finally the two unicorns who had exposed the flaw in her story. Without a word she turned away and began to swim away from the group.

“Hey! Get back here!” called Dusky Jack, the first to visibly react.

Zizanie knew this was coming, but instead elected to stay where she was. She wasn’t feeling like wasting energy when, if her instinct was correct, Sea Cucumber wouldn’t be going very far.

Indeed the smaller mare suddenly bumped into an invisible mass that resolved itself into the shape of Trixie, who grabbed hold of the seapony with her hooves. Zizanie rather enjoyed everypony’s surprise when the other Trixie disappeared. This seemed like a classic Trixie trick to leave an illusionary double while the real one slinked off under the cover of invisibility.

Sea Cucumber struggled in Trixie’s hooves, and before anypony could reach the pair to lend the unicorn a hoof or a fin, the green seapony let loose a surprisingly powerful roar that startled all present. It was almost enough by itself to force Trixie to let go, though what came next did.

Three kaosharks came out of nowhere, obviously called by the resounding roar of their ally, and headed straight for the small group, teeths and claws bared aggressively.

“I don’t need any of them alive anymore! RIP THEM TO SHREDS!” declared Sea Cucumber, or whoever she was, her voice sounding harsh and much older all at once.

This wasn’t how Zizanie expected events to go down.

Author's Note:

BOOM! Merry Christmas y'all! Phew this took a while to write for no reason...

I'm sorry it's very short, dialogue-heavy and doesn't really accomplish much except get Lyra out of her cage, but I thought it was more important to get a chapter out again than making super long. I hope this is enough for now. There is still some problem with the chronology of upcoming events that are troubling me, but once that is solved I should be able to finish this before yet another year passes us by. This is getting ridiculous...

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