• Published 11th Aug 2017
  • 2,236 Views, 420 Comments

Princess Cadance's Lonely Hearts Club Land - kudzuhaiku

Look at all of the lonely ponies, where do they all come from? Furious Funnel comes from Appleloosa, and he's looking for somepony to be with him when he's sixty four.

  • ...

Chapter 3

The registration building had lines based on tribe. Furious didn’t know nor understand if this had some deeper meaning, some ulteriour motive, but the pegasus pony tribe had the shortest lines and the earth pony tribe had the longest. There were a lot of earth ponies present, but Furious wasn’t smart enough to know if earth ponies outnumbered the other tribes in society. The unicorns that had arrived seemed like the stereotypical sorts that would need help finding their true loves, as most of them seemed to be rather meek eggheads.

Then again, he had trouble finding love, so what did that say about him?

Some ponies talked in the line, or even flirted, but not Furious. He stood still, quiet, and when the line moved, he moseyed forwards like a model citizen. Never let it be said that he held up a line. The unicorn line moved lightning quick, but he had no idea why, while the earth pony line moved with the hurried, breakneck speed of near-frozen molasses. The pegasus pony line existed somewhere in between.

Only a few more ponies and then Furious would be in the door.

Stepping inside the door, Furious almost bolted right back out. Inside was a room full of tables with ponies hunched over them, and they appeared to be filling out paperwork. The sound of hundreds of pencils filled his ears, a sound that made his mouth go as dry as the southern deserts. Almost right away, he was assaulted by a young, perky filly, no doubt some kind of student, and she talked just about as fast as he could fly.

Furious was no Rainbow Dash, but he was no slouch either.

“Hi! How are ya? Welcome to the Crystal Empire! You need to fill out this form and be as honest as possible! Please read the instructions and they will help you understand what is going on! Remember, be as honest as possible otherwise, you might end up with a mate you don’t like and hearts could be broken. Got it? Good! You can read and write, correct?” The filly was a frightening shade of pink and there was a manic gleam in her pale blue eyes.


“Excellent! Please, take a clipboard with a survey and go sit down! There are a lot more ponies to process! If you need any help at all, just sit back and raise a hoof! Now have fun, and be honest, or else you won’t have a good time!”

Furious nodded. “Okay—”

“You’ll do fine! Now get a move on, there are a few seats right over there!”

Taking a clipboard with his wing, Furious got out of the way so other ponies behind him could be processed. He hurried to where there were a few seats available, sweating, nervous, and positive that he had made a dreadful mistake. There was no way he would be able to concentrate in here, and he thought about fleeing before his life was ruined.

“Hi! How are ya? Welcome to the Crystal Empire! You need to fill out this form and be as honest as possible! Please read the instructions and they will help you understand what is going on! Remember, be as honest as possible otherwise, you might end up with a mate you don’t like and hearts could be broken. Got it? Good! You can read and write, correct?”

The survey had a focus on honesty, with the assurance that the only wrong answer was a dishonest one. Nopony would judge these answers, or be critical, and the data gathered was used solely for the purposes of matchmaking. The clearer and more concise the answers, the better chances one had for compatibility. The process was long, involved, complicated, and the results were puzzled over by Princess Cadance and an army of students learning the matchmaker trade.

He read through the five pages of introduction and instructions a few times, and then with sweaty frogs, he had himself a look at the actual survey, wondering what he might find. He folded back a few pages, got himself into a concentrating mood, and had himself a gander at the very first question on the survey.

Would you marry outside of your tribe? it asked. Are you a tribalist?

“Aw, buffalo dung,” he murmured to himself. In response, he wrote, I ain’t no tribalist. A pony is a pony is a pony, except when they is a buffalo, but those are fine too. I’d like a wife with wings so we can fly together, but this ain’t no deal breaker. Flying is nice, but I ain’t picky.

Squinting, he read the next question: Coffee or tea?

Frowning, Furious pondered the doozy of a question. He was a coffee drinking, biscuit eating, pancake gobbling sort of pony. Sweating, he knew this was the sort of question that could make or break a marriage. How did he answer? If he said both, he could increase his chances of finding a mare, but then he thought about honesty. Could he love a tea drinker?

With his pencil, he scratched out, Coffee. No sissy weed water for me, thanks. There, that was honest and true, and the ponies sorting this survey would know how he felt about the subject. Glancing at his answer once more, he felt good about it, confident, and knew that he had done right.

Are you gay?

Grinning, Furious had a chance to be clever, and he replied, I’m happy, thanks, and I like mares.

What is your prefered body type? Can you describe it? What would your ideal mate look like? His sole surviving eye darting back and forth, he re-read this question multiple times and began to have himself a good think. It all went back to honesty and he had to be clear about what it was he wanted in a mare, which was a question whose complexity seemed to grow each time he read what was written on the paper.

After some considerable (for him) thought, he felt confident enough to write down his response: I needs me a good, stocky mare, solid of build. I’m a go getter, and I’d imagine there’ll be some real hard humping later. I don’t do nothing half way. I need a mare that I can lay into without worry or fear of breaking her. I don’t need no mare with her ribs showing, ‘cause I don’t want to feel like I’m humping a washboard, or getting romantic with a sack of jackalope skulls. I’d prefer a mare with some ‘cushion for the pushin’, as the old saying goes.

Well, that was easy enough, and he read the next line of text. Are you a virgin?

Well shucks, y’all don’t pull no punches, do you? Yes I am. I have me some troubles, which is why I am here.

The next words were as follows: Would you like a virgin to marry?

This made Furious pause and he suspected this inquiry had some hidden depth that he was no doubt unaware of. He didn’t know how to answer, and that was the truth. For whatever reason, this felt judgmental, Several times, he started to answer, then pulled away, unsure. Hesitant, dithering, he tried to think about it from the perspective of a mare, and if she would value virgin status with a stallion. Agonising over his choice, he committed himself to paper.

It ain’t no deal breaker one way or the other, a mare ain’t no less a mare if she’s had dealings with a stallion, but I’d prefer somebody like myself to share that special moment with. There, that felt honest and true, and after reading over it a few times, Furious was satisfied with his answer.

Do you have disabilities? the survey asked.

The pegasus answered right away: I is missing an eye, I has me a gimpy leg, my dock is crooked, and I is as ugly as second-hoof sin. Sighing, he had a little regret for what he had written. It was harsh—but honest.

Would you marry a pony with disabilities?

This made Furious pause and he began tapping the tip of his pencil against the table. Almost right away, he realised that if he said no, he would a hypocrite. Having some disfigurement and some deformities, he had to depend upon the grace of another to accept him. How could he not do the same in return? At the same time, he didn’t want to end up with a pony that was almost bedridden, but how could he answer this in a nice, honest way that he wouldn’t feel ashamed about?

So long as she can fly with me I ain’t gonna be too bothered by no disability.

There, that seemed to leave the window open to a few minor flaws, like his own, without the risk of ending up with a pony too crippled to leave the house, and he didn’t feel too ashamed by what he wrote. He drew in a deep breath, ignored the humming pony across the table, and kept going.

How do you feel about gender roles?

Sighing, Furious settled in for the long haul…

Hundreds of questions, all done. His age, his own gender, his marital status, the painful questions about marrying somepony with foals from another marriage, it was all done. It was over. He had signed his name on the survey, given over a sample of his mane, and then was shoved out of the back door into the cool, dark evening.

Had it been that long?

It had.

Overhead, there were stars, too many to count, and the Crystal Empire was a glittering jewel projecting a million rays of light. Spreading his wings, Furious took to the skies and he didn’t need a running start. He flew with ease, gaining altitude, and he began to wonder what he would do with himself for the night. Getting a hotel room seemed unlikely, and he didn’t like the headache or the hassle that securing some lodging presented.

The survey left him feeling introspective, so much so that this night might turn into one of navel gazing. What sort of pony was he? What did he value? Was he really a monarchist and did he believe in the rule of the Crown? Was he a conservative monarchist, a leftist monarchist, and how did he really feel about democracy? Would he really be that unhappy with a tea drinker?

He didn’t have a favourite princess, he had never sworn fealty to any one princess, and by the looks of things on the survey, he had missed out a lot on life. The questions of travelling mystified him and left him feeling out of sorts when he realised how little of the world he had seen. So much he hadn’t done.


The unexpected voice startled him and when he turned to look, he almost dropped out of the sky. A creature made from the shroud of night itself flew beside him, and she was big, real big. Her wingspan had to be more than six times his own and her long, slinky body cut through the air with no effort. Terrifying claws glistened in the night, fangs glittered in the moonlight, and wrapped around her neck was a shawl that had a curious amount of movement from within.

“What are you?” Furious asked. He couldn’t help but notice that her talons could wrap around his neck, and this worried him a great deal.

“I’m not a what, I’m a who,” the unknown creature replied in a teasing voice. “You only get one chance to make a first impression. You might want to keep that in mind when you get married. Well, I’m assuming you’re here for the mass wedding. Anyhow, what I am is unimportant, and who I am is a mother whose foal just won’t sleep. She’s being a real pain in my neck and the only way to keep her quiet is to go for a fly. So here I am.”

“Are you a… a… sphinx?” Furious asked.

“Okay, fine, we’ll play twenty questions, but only because I am bored. I am not a sphinx, but I can see why you might think I am. For clarification, sphinxes have lion paws in the front.” Bright green slitted eyes flashed in the silver moonlight, and the unknown creature was grinning from tufted ear to tufted ear.

“I meant no offense, Miss, and I’m powerful sorry.” Reaching up with his foreleg, Furious doffed his bucket hat for a moment and then plopped it back down upon his head.

“Do you need a place to sleep?” the unknown stranger asked.

“I do.”

“Well, you are in luck. A lot of nice ponies leave hammocks up top on their towers, just for pegasus ponies that come to visit during times like these. Fly around, you’ll find one, and you can get you some shuteye. Just be polite, don’t leave a mess, and don’t go crowing come morning, that’s just rude.”

“I really am sorry, Ma’am, but you startled me and that musta spooked the manners right outa me. I didn’t mean to offend ya if I did.” Furious watched the majestic creature beside him, observing how she flew with terrifying efficiency. At the moment, she was gliding and her black feathers were so shiny that the starlight reflected upon them.

“Don’t worry about it,” she replied. “Good luck finding a spot to sleep. Just keep looking and don’t give up. Now if you’ll excuse me, I need to do a couple of high speed power dives to wear out this little snotball daughter of mine.”

With a woosh, the strange creature departed, flying away with such speed that Furious could only stare with wide-eyed wonder. She was a creature made of fuzz, feathers, claws, fangs, and nightmares. Already, Furious knew that there would be no way to convince Braeburn that what he had just seen was real.

Above him, death flew on black wings, one of the many fabled denizens of the Crystal Empire.

Author's Note:

Soon: nuptials. With a blindfold.