• Published 16th Jul 2012
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Pony POV Series Season Three: Butterflies - Alex Warlorn



Discord beaten. Reality restored. But invisible wounds must heal too. Time for butterflies to fly.

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Pony POV Series Episode 45: "Replacement Screws"

PONY POV SERIES

REPLACEMENT SCREWS

"Not-Really-Optional" Canon
(There is nothing optional about this canon)

This house has never felt more empty. Once upon a time, at Hearth Warming's Eve, it would have had a small hill of packages, the best toys bought straight from Manehatten, the finest dresses, and the most expensive horseshoes and ties.

Now it was cluttered with furniture no pony used, filled with empty rooms, and stuffed with antiques with no pony to look at them. It was the first Hearth Warming's Eve, and Day, that I spent all alone.

My name is Onyx Tiara. My birth-name, and according to the family by-laws the one I have to sign my checks with, is Filthy Rich. My grandfather, Stinking Rich, came from what elitist Narwhals would call a hayseed family. He survived on blood, sweat, and tears. But he was no fool, and he knew a success when he saw one. So he took a chance.

That chance was to form a symbiotic relationship with the Apple family, and sell their near impossible to raise Zap Apples, hard won from the deadly-as-always Everfree Forest. And he used those bits to buy wares from the ponies coming all over Equestria to sample the jam that existed nowhere else in the world, then sell those wares off to -other- ponies from other parts of Equestria. He made a fortune.

Of course, to the Narwhals he was still just a "country bumpkin stallion" from the collection of tents and a small farm in the shadow of their royal city. But they still liked their jam, and they could buy it only from him thanks to a very wise exclusive sellers contract with the Apples. He met the most beautiful pony in Equestria of her day (she wrote horror novels, go figure), who saw past his dirty facade and taught him to look and act like a gentlepony.

Rich's Barnyard Bargains came into formal existence soon enough. Father had the idea of taking a loss to under bid our competitors to buy customer loyalty and more importantly to destroy their profit margin. Grandfather thought Father was insane, but it worked.

My wholesale buying and price slashing created the little empire I've enjoyed with my empress and little princess. ... I felt so proud of her seeing her pay perfect attention as I recounted my leg of our family history, I would have gone all the way back to my grandfather but I had to keep it short. She was going to be the queen of the business world someday, I knew it.

And from the one pony who also paid attention (a little frizzy red-head filly with candy for a cutie mark) she might have some competition to keep her healthy (while eliminating the competition is a part of business, having NO competition leaves you a straw giant to be knocked over by an outside force). Or perhaps a good business partner (after all, a business is nothing if it doesn't have its suppliers and consumers to purchase its goods).

I can't -believe- Silver Spoon SLEPT through it! Her family has had wealth longer than us, I figured she'd have a longer line to appreciate the history more! Silver Axe, er, Tongue makes a good business partner though.

At least my little diamond's clapping was cute.

Yes I am aware my child doesn't have quite the same, way of speaking as me. No, she is NOT adopted! With our businesses expanding beyond Ponyville, some things are simply not proper anymore. My, my wife suggested I should take a few of those elocution lessons myself.

Huh? Oh don't tell me you've gone to sleep too! Economics is not boring! Why does everypony keep saying that? And my filly isn't either! You take that back!

...I never noticed how many empty rooms this house now has until last Hearts and Hooves day. When she, when she didn't come home I thought she was visiting Silver Spoon again ... later I found out they had had a horrible fight, weeks before... that my little princess hadn't spoken of, and Silver Spoon hadn't mentioned to her parents.

I'd give the feather duster who'd find my little filly half my fortune if I thought it would help. Diamond Tiara. Where are you?

...What are you looking all ashamed about?

My wife? . . . We met when we were foals. You would have never guessed she was upper-middle-class from how she acted. I still have the scars from our first play-date. She did not get the name Golden Skates for nothing after all, she was quite the active filly ... more so than a pudgy little colt who couldn't make one lap around the track without stopping for breath.

As we got older, she had an eye for coordination and precision that was a sight to behold, and she loved it. The attention and the symmetry she could give things... She was no trophy-mare, if anything I was HER trophy, HER prize! And I couldn't think of a higher honor.

No, the only family history she ever talked about was a poet from the pre-tyrant era.

I introduced her to the finer points of high society, how to look and dress and act like a lady proper among the social elite. She says she only did it for me, but personally I think she saw it as a challenge or a glorified game of pretend that adults played among themselves. And she loved to win any game that presented itself, she was just that kind of pony.

Then of course came the happiest day of my life: we went from prince and princess of our little world to king and queen.

What followed was the second happiest day of my life. Did I want a colt instead of a filly? If I did, I don't remember, all I remember is seeing the spitting image of my wife as a foal in her forelegs, nursing. And I knew our fairytale had come full circle with a new princess to find her prince.

When Golden Tiara took on more responsibilities I didn't stop her, why should I? It's not like earth pony mares are made of glass like narwhales or have hollow bones like the feather dusters.

She then began surprising me by doing some of my workload for me. She slept less. She ate less. She never rolled back on spending time with me or our filly. For a while she kept coming up with new ideas on the fly, then, so slowly it was like the receding of the tide, they stopped.

I didn't notice Silver Platter, and other mares from high brow families talking to her, about how a proper mare did and didn't act.

I didn't notice her surprise games at parties shrinking in number and force.

I didn't notice the spontaneousness I saw in a filly with gold colored roller skates being buried alive bit by bit. I didn't notice her suffocating under the weight she was putting on herself.

Steam began to hiss its way out of the building pipes. Golden Tiara bucked an accountant in the face who had finished his work a day early, throwing off her plans.

One night she smashed a plate in the face of a maid who had put them back into the cupboard in the wrong order.

Then came that day, my princess was at home organizing the house schedule, our little princess had no school that day. I heard the noise and came into the room. What I saw wasn't my wife.

I . . . I'm sure it was just stress, yes, that's all it had to be. There's no way that thing had been my wife.

It all should have gone away in a day or two. Or a week or two. Or a month or two. That wasn't her, it couldn't have been her. I wanted my princess back!

I went before the incarnation of evil itself to beg for her to use her magic for good, yes I was that blinded by desperation.

The Tyrant claimed that mind altering magic couldn't fix my wife's ... illness, unless I wanted to completely eradicate the person she was. Some propaganda about how mind magic couldn't repair Golden Tiara's ... problem.

Nag. I'll never forgive her for choosing not to heal Golden, and then covering up her choice with some obvious lie.

Now I can't bear to look at that thing! It's like looking at some grotesque parody of her! I want Golden Tiara back! I want the mother of my filly back! I want the filly who taught a colt to believe in himself back!

I even beseeched her sister once she was freed from her imprisonment, hoping another victim of the tyrant's cruelty would hear my pleas. She said in the time before her imprisonment, mind magic was not a common practice by virtue of their predecessor's horrific usage of it, and she was still learning up on the changes that had taken place since then. She said there was nothing she could do but give my princess dreams as pleasant as a mad mare was capable of.

Once more, by one tyrant's hoof or another, I had been denied the chance to have Golden Tiara back.

Then Princess Cadence made a brief respite from her exile as a threat to the tyrant's power (too many would know her for what she was if she sent another rival to the moon NOW). The one Alicorn the ponies knew they could trust, even if she was blind to her family's corruption. I dared ask her for help any help. When Diamond was at school I visited the bedlam with her and her bodyguard (who broke into a cold sweat one patient began howling like a wolf). She had insisted her visit be completely unknown for privacy's sake. And I knew how the tyrant would react if she found out her niece was making friends among the people.

She cast the a spell meant to heal bonds on myself and the parody of my wife.

I...I did feel my love for Golden reignite for a brief, fleeting moment, and I think I saw the same deep in the mad eyes of that parody. But then the moment was gone, and the parody was still there. She then tried a memory spell...something it reminded her of caused the parody to become... violent. Cadence was lucky even young Alicorns are apparently very difficult to truly hurt and the orderlies were ready. The doctors refused to permit another try for the safety of all involved. Cadence asked for my forgiveness for her failure...At the very least, I don't hate her. One cannot fake the look of utter disbelief she had when her spells failed to reach Golden deep inside that parody of her. At the very least, Cadence tried, and that's more than I can say for her aunts.


Then came the second time in so many years that another tyrant deity made a claim on Celestia's throne but not bothering with her farce of being loving and benign, and being completely open in seeing all ponies as his playthings. It was strangely refreshing.

The world went mad. Everyone went mad. My precious little princess turned into a foal sized doll, tried on all my little princess' clothes, and then it went outside.

One of the work-hooves was dusting and humming to herself, while trotting on the walls!

I backed away from her in shock when I bumped into our chef who was saying something about the vegetables trying to eat him.

His pudgy shape became athletic, his mane became white and violet with curls, his coat became lavender. His form shifted to alluring perfect shape I knew every detail of. Bones shifted as she became shorter. Her eyes blinked into the world's most perfect purple.

"Hello my prince, I missed you," she whispered taking off her chef's hat.

I looked into her eyes, I saw a gleam in my eyes from my own reflection. I grinned. My entire body shook. I laughed like a hyena. I looked at the maid dusting on the walls, and touched her with a hoof.

Instantly her elderly and gray and faded beige colors brightened to purples and whites, her maid outfit becoming form-fitting and enticing. She hopped off the wall and nuzzled me as the 'chef' did too from behind. "Hello my prince, I missed you," she whispered, spitting out the feather duster.

I laughed like a mad pony. Tossing off my business tie I ran through my house naked. I spotted our second, younger house keeper hiding from the potted plants she said wanted to molest her. I grabbed her. She shifted into her proper form with a white and black maid outfit to the other one's black and white maid uniform. "Hello my prince, I missed you," she whispered as she nuzzled me as the other three did the same.

And her numbers grew. Our gardener, our accountant, the nanny, a colt selling door to door cookies, our butler, everyone in the house soon welcomed me with the words, "Hello my prince, I missed you."

I assembled them in the upstairs dancing rooming when I had found all I could find. I told them to take off anything they were wearing and they obeyed without question, smiling at me. I basked in their presence, over a dozen images of perfect beauty looking back lovingly me at me.

I then ordered them to shuffle around while my back was turned. I heard them move about, but when I turned around, I could not tell who had moved where. And I loved it. She was mine! All mine! And she'd never leave me again! And I would always have her! If I ever lost her I could just make another!

Then a thought hit me, of how I could reach my perfect union with her ... I touched myself. And nothing happened. I let out a cry out anger and disappointment. My princess muzzled me from all directions.

I heard a knocking on the window. I saw something purple flying above the ground with a propeller beanie. It looked at me lovingly with a smile on her face. She looked surprised and confused when she noticed my wife everywhere, but she just grinned wide and shouted, "Got room for one more?"

"Begone parody!!" I snarled.

A floating screen appeared in front of it showing a heart breaking in two. It flew away sniffing. I ignored the thing.

I enjoyed my wife's pleasurable company several times over at once.

The wall of rainbow light came. Reality crashing down on me. And my wife vanished several times over, replaced by the house staff and one traumatized colt. We all screamed.

I don't ... remember the next couple of days clearly. One of the maids has claimed I tried to hang myself. I do remember waking up in a hospital bed, and Nurse Redheart saying they had to pump my stomach. I came home to find half the liquor stores completely empty.

No. My wife didn't come home during the day of chaos! No she didn't! Even if I was insane I wouldn't have told her to go away! I wouldn't have rejected her even in the depth of madness. Surrounded by cheap replacements of her which she simply accepted and was willing to embrace along with me!!!

That-that couldn't have been her! I wouldn't have said that to her! It must've have been a trick of the chaos spirit!

When I came home, I heard noise from upstairs, I found one of the servants bleeding on the forehead and another with a nasty bump and black eye. I heard screaming coming from Diamond Tiara's room. I found her throwing her doll collection against the wall shattering the expensive glass figures, each one worth a small fortune. "It's not fair! It's not fair! Mama was free and I couldn't even hug her! It's not fair!"

She snarled and hissed words I'd never taught her at them. She never stopped screaming. What else did she say? No, please, I do not wish to recall.

She was crying, no, she was bawling her eyes out. Rage and sadness tore up her room worse than any typhoon.

I took a step back when she saw me, she looked like a wild animal. She growled and galloped at me. She bucked and bit at me, I held her at hoof length. All the time screaming that she wanted her mother back and that she hated everypony. I was scared.

An hour later she calmed down enough that I could safely put her to bed. I ordered the servants to clean her up and tidy her room. She fell asleep crying. She kept, she kept calling for Her. It was like knives in my ears.

Then came the day Miss Applejack came by. The house was still a complete disaster. Not all the damage had been caused by the chaos spirit and repairing the ponies took priority over repairing Ponyville.

"Ah just wanna speak ta yer daughter! I'm not sellin' nothin'! Oh come on please?" She pleaded at they entry hall. "Hey, I happen to be friends with Celestia, just so you know, and-"

How dare she mention That Tyrant, like being acquaintances with That Tyrant was a good thing!? I didn't bother with servants, I picked her up and tossed her out the door- "HEY! Put me down ya yellah-UGH!"

My next weekly card game with Granny Smith was bitterly silent.

Weeks later, as we began to piece our lives back together. I had collected for a party the Silvers, and the other members of the hard working earth pony families, who pushed the wheels that made Ponyville turn, and made it the worthy gateway town to Equestria that it was no matter what the Narwhal snobs say.

A mare and her husband spoke with each other, she asked. "Did you see Screw Ball flying over Ponyville during ... that day?"

"Screw Ball?" He replied.

"Filthy Rich's wife. Nurse Battleaxe told me about it at our last visit to the spa. Apparently she escaped, along with the other mental patients. Discord LET them out and told them to have at it. I guess since he couldn't drive them to Crazy-Town cause they were already there, he did the opposite and made anything their screwed up minds came up with real to get his kicks out of them. Screw Ball went flying. Did you see that purple flying pony with the beanie flipping her lips?"

He laughed, "That thing was real? I figured it was just some fake pony Discord made. It was too ugly to be a real pony!"

I think he realized I was standing behind him after he went through the second story window.

I didn't let the doctors so much as touch me with their psycho-babble, I knew I was alright. There was only one pony whose well being I cared about, that I could do something about after that sick day.

I didn't think Diamond Tiara truly needed anything at first. After all, earth ponies were built to take it, not like spoiled narwhals or feather-dusters. But then came the ... incident, on Family Appreciation Day at school, where Granny-Smith got her chance to tell what I didn't have time to.

And my daughter crossed the line.

A couple days later I had one of the visiting therapists to Ponyville do a session with my little princess, he also asked about her mother. We spoke when she was away at school.

"From what little of her family history I've managed to dig up, I think perhaps your wife's condition is genetic. If such is the case, then I suggest you be prepared for when her child begins to suffer such ... episodes." That doctor never set hoof on my family's property again.

It can't be genetic! It isn't my princess' fault! It must be what that chaos spirit did to my poor little diamond! He did this! He must have!

++++++

I dropped my namesake out of my two hooves back into my soup bowl when I saw that pony toss. Mom dragged me back home with barely a few well chosen excuses.

That was when he dyed his coat from brown to black. And began wearing his old silver onyx neck ring opposed to his respectable business tie. Anyone calling him by his birth name was thrown out the door with the pink slip shoved in their mouth. I nearly got hit by one that went flying out the door.

Diamond had told me he had refused to see a doctor following the chaos monster's rampage, and those that came to see him were quickly escorted off the grounds. That was one of the last things she ever told me before, before she said those black words to me...

+++++++

The maid wasn't the first purple Earth pony to be mounted by Onyx Tiara in his bed since his wife had become Screwball, and she likely wouldn't be the last. There had been many, none had so far had become pregnant. Streaks of violet and white mane, purple eyes, a lavender coat, any detail, any resemblance, was enough to earn a night with the black furred earth pony.

Sometimes he'd give compliments, sometimes he'd prove himself a charmer and woo them to a night with him. But each night, every climax, would end the same, with him shouting only one name, and only one name, and for that name to be muttered in his sleep next to whatever mare was with him that night, and they'd eventually leave, taking whatever trinkets he offered in compensation.

And if they tried to stay hoping to erase the name from his mind with their passion or endure being a instrument of vicarious desires for the sake of the prize, they'd see how much of my father's line bred true onto the next generation.

I had no experience with pranks beyond the mean spirited taunts and cruel lies towards blank flank fillies, so all eyes would be on THEIR worthless backsides rather than my worthless backside. But I learned very quickly, and could be more vicious than a griffon if I fancied. And I would protect my mother's empty seat from anyone who'd dare try to steal it.

"He'll come back to her. I know he will. He has to." I told myself with a sense of dim hope each time I saw another poor imitation who could never stand up to my mother's beauty leave, never to be seen again.

You're really surprised at a filly knowing about mares and stallions? I'm high society, I've walked in on drunk couples in one of our guest rooms since before I got my cutie mark.

'Diamond Tiara', I hate the mark of Cain on my rear but I still prefer it over my birth-name.

Tried and true sadist 'Diamond Tiara,' and loyal minion and partner in teasing, Silver Spoon.

And a new dress in the making to dress up my cutie mark so pretty no one will ask what it's for.

Miss Cheerilee's lesson about Cutie Marks. I already had the ugly thing, so why should we keep talking about it? Stupid cutie mark.

So I did what I always did when I was feeling down, make somepony else feel worse.

Mother said go for the top, and the only way to be at the top is for another pony to be at the bottom.

Mom always said I was special. So that means everypony else can't be special.

After all, they weren't me, what did I care if they hurt? Oh right, I cared because it meant there was somepony else worse off than me and that made me feel better!

And that worked perfectly. I enjoyed my new toy. It gave me such a warm feeling inside.

It was so nice I was even able to pretend that I didn't care both my parents were too busy to attend my Cute-Ceañera. Mom said she'd be there but had to 'teach some pencil pushers some manners first,' whatever that meant. She never showed, neither did dad.

At least I had plenty of presents and a new chew toy to take my mind off it.

Then the toy bit back! At my party for the thing I dared not let these foals realize was as impotent as me.

'She's free to be whatever she wants to be?!'

When do you hate somepony? Simple. When they have something I want!

And that it couldn't be bought with my father's money wasn't a feeling I was used to. Neither was somepony actually standing up to me!

The orange pegasus said "And she's not stuck being stuck-up like you two!"

I would give every doll and every dress I had if I could erase those words from reality!

There was a weird look on Silver Spoon's face like her brain had simply shut off, followed by her looking like she'd been bucked in the gut.

And I spent the rest of my party on the sidelines!

Silver Spoon? Pst. Sure she stayed alongside me. But why wouldn't she? It's not like that's anything special.

I want a do over! I want a cutie mark that shows I'm special like Mom says I am! The cutie mark can't be right, right? Wearing jewelry, can't be all I'm good for, right? Like a tailor's dummy?

Then the day of, Discord, happened.

The dance, the dance, the dance, everything switched around.

No, please, I don't wanna talk about that.

Whenever that little white blank- whenever Sweetie Belle was around, I felt ill just at the idea of getting back at the yellow blank for my humiliation.

This only made me more determined! One weird sickness wasn't going to keep me from getting what I deserved!

Finally has her cutie mark? ... Rubbing my face in it?! Who does she think she is? Me?

Then she didn't have her cutie mark, stupid Applebloom went and infected herself with some crazy plague and ... the sickness came again when I tried to think of cruel things to say to her. Not that it mattered, when she came back to school everyone was paying attention to her and telling her how worried they were! Even when she loses she STILL gets all the attention!

Why. Why is she the one with friends? A no talent bumpkin who can't even talk straight? Why am I the one alone?

Then came for my chance for revenge. To break her. To destroy her. I wanted nothing left of her!

To humiliate her by proxy with her crazy grandmother! HAHAHAH! The best part was, there was no way I could get in trouble! All I had to do was set the pieces and watch them move! After all, I wasn't doing anything wrong, not that anyone could prove!

Waddya mean 'petty?'

I mean! Have you SEEN that hat her grandmother made her wear? That is so last century!

Then ... then ... everything goes wrong. Her granny shows up just like she's supposed to and ... she's responsible for the founding of Ponyville, and for my family being rich, and for me being born?

NOT FAIR! NOT FAIR! Not again! This was supposed to be my moment! She was finally going to get it! I tried to salvage the situation and -

And I've never been shouted at by my father before. I can't remember the last time, if there was a last time.

What did he say? Oh I don't remember. Er, something about insulting his most trusted business partner and biggest supplier, damaging the friendship that existed between two families since before Ponyville began, being awful to an honest hard working fellow earth pony, being snotty, spoiled and, and petty?

He said I needed to learn what it meant to earn something. He slapped the rabbit ears on me and made me do that hop over the water cans singing the ABCs, WITH those blank flanks. . . my rear legs were so sore the next day!

I rejected Silver Spoon's offer to use her as a crutch, once we were in sight of the school. That blank wasn't getting satisfaction from me.

Dad also took a much bigger interest in what I did at school.

I remember Miss Cheerilee speaking to my father, she didn't know foals of rich families had eavesdropping down to an art form.

"It's like seeing other fillies hurt is the only thing that can make her happy anymore. And now she doesn't even have that."

Happy?! What did grown-ups know?! They thought I pushed these blanks in their place because it made me happy?! ... I got sweet satisfaction when I saw their sad little faces, when I saw them hurt with their perfect little lives for one moment.

I felt sick again.

Then came ... then came the visit from the doctor who worked at the same place where they were trying their hardest to make mama be well again, so everything could go back to the way it was supposed to be.

Silver Spoon keeps pestering me about what's bothering me. WHAT IS SHE, STUPID? Mama's gonna be sick forever! I have a cutie mark for wearing jewelry! I'm not anything without my namesake! I've been humiliated repeatedly in front of the foals I'm supposed to be the popular one of! So why don't I have lots of friends?! When things go wrong for me everyone laughs! When things go wrong for that, ugh, for Applebloom everyone feels bad for her! Why? What does Silver Spoon know? Then what good is she?!

She's as worthless as a blank-flank! A silver spoon? What's she good at? Eating cereal?! A worthless pony with a worthless friend! Get lost!

I want everything back to the way it's supposed to be! Where everypony at school loves me! Where mama is waiting for me! Where dad loves me! Where the intruders aren't always coming through the back door trying to steal papa! I want everything back to normal!!

I could listen to the coma inducing lectures from my special tutor about how narwhals and feather-dusters and evil Alicorns secretly ruled Equestria and how Earth ponies were slaves and didn't even know it.

Narwhals, spoiled, lazy.

Mama's birthday coming up.

Go to best dress maker in Ponyville.

Stupid Narwhal! What does she know?

Knows how to sew, knows about mama, tells me mama will love it more if I do it myself.

Needle marks all over my mouth and hooves. Mama loves it.

Narwhal-M-miss Rarity, willing to teach me how to sew.

Doesn't treat me as an 'inferior' Earth pony. She uses her hooves to sew as much as her horn.

She isn't being paid, at all, but, she's still willing to teach me. Just because? She doesn't work for dad.

So why ... why does it feel so right around her?

Why do I feel so ... happy?

I don't need to be on guard, around her.

That was when I first began hearing the voices. Sometimes I saw a brown pony with a 'arrows pointing everywhere' cutie mark in my head when the voices spoke. The voices' promises. The voices are ugly. Sometimes they act nice, sometimes they act mean...

Then Heart and Hooves Day comes. I used to get cards from everypony in class. Now my desk is strangely empty. It's not like it matters, so why I do care?

Normally I just buy a card and give to mom through the slot at the asyl-, at the hospital. But Miss Rarity said that when someone is made with your own hooves, your feelings show more.

We never have much actual class work on a holiday anyway, so, I have plenty of time to put one together. It's purple and white and sparkles like diamonds. White and purple. Like both of them. Wait. Who did I make this for? I feel something inside me being pulled taut.

I feel the pale yellow feather-duster, no, pegasus in the desk behind me looking over my shoulder. Alula. She attended my Cute-Ceañera.

I don't need this. I look around the room at the red and magenta balloons.

I blurt out in a higher than normal tone as I look back at her, "I like the red one!"

Without one hesitation, Alula hooves me a red and white card. Out of the corner of my eye I see Silver Spoon smiling at me.

There's a hopeful, expecting looking in Alula's eyes.

Why?

I feel like my mind breaks in two.

I shut down. I don't know or care what Sweetie Belle and her friends are doing.

Then the voices start up worse than ever! Like snakes in my head! I don't hear what Alula says. The voices promise. The voices say, hurt the nar-, hurt Rarity! Then mama will be well.

I leave the paper heart colored white and violet in my desk.

The voices promise.

The voice promises.

PROMISES TO MAKE MOM BETTER! Then everything can be perfect and back to the way it's supposed to be!

... and I see the look on her face ... I've seen it one time before ... it was the look ... the look mama had when, when I helped the doctors who came to our house ...

She doesn't come back. No. Mama, mama, MA-MA!

'There there dear, you don't need to remember anymore ...'

"Thank you."

'A good filly. A very good filly. Because only a good filly would care about her mom right? Or is that a bad filly? Who doesn't want her father to be happy? Or who hurts her only friend? Which is it?'

I shuddered. "I-I don't know."

'Very good.'

A pair of guard pegasi made note of every pony or carriage that entered Canterlot's City.

A tiny swarm of parasprites swarmed around them for exactly one minute and six seconds.

I huddled into the city in the meantime, everypony's eyes on the parasprites. Before they just flew away and ate each other.

The noise. It wasn't the sights I noticed first. It was the noise. The noise was so confusing.

I had been to Canterlot before, along with everypony else in my class on our field trip, but that was all controlled, and it was the most direct route from the pegasus port to the Gardens and back again.

The busy ponies of Canterlot didn't give me a second look. It was a really weird feeling. In Ponyville I always drew heads, everypony knew the daughter of the biggest retailer in Ponyville. Here it was like...I didn't exist...

I also felt strangely exposed. In Ponyville going around without anything on was just natural outside of winter or Nightmare Night. But here, from foals to adults to the guards, not a single pony was naked. It made me feel . . . inadequate.

A big pony bumped into me and didn't even stop to say 'sorry' just hurrying off to where he wanted to go. Now I actually felt vexed. Weren't Canterlot Ponies supposed to be the best? Where were their manner to a little lady?

'Maybe you're not a little lady then. Maybe you're just not that important, though you already knew that, didn't you? But it's alright my dear. It's perfectly alright. As long as you walk the path I've set for you, I'll always protect you. There is nothing to worry about with me.'

As my head cleared I finally noticed, I was in the minority. Unicorns were a novelty in Ponyville, with most at best second generation, with the traditions around our Winter Wrap-Up to keep them from flaunting their powers and having to use muscles like the rest of us ponies. Now I found myself surrounded on all sides by unicorns! I don't think I've ever seen this many in my whole life!

So many.

'You're not a Venus Pony Trap, so stop gawking and get one hoof in front of the other already little filly!'

I obey.

'Look at them my little pony. From more successful families than you, more educated than you, more rich than you, more refined than you, my little pony. Does that make them better than you?' The voice gasped, 'But they're unicorns! Dirty ugly wicked Narwhals! The ones your father, and grandfather, and your tutor are always saying are bad ponies. So they must be bad right my little pony?

But! What about Rarity? Isn't she a narwhal? Oh she treated you awful when you first met so she must be bad! But she then set up the dress for you so she must be good. But she made you do it so she must be bad! But she actually taught you how to sew! I mean! Taught you something that could in some distant random universe might somehow possibly be useful! And not for a bit! So she must be good! And if she's a good narwhal, then maybe all unicorns aren't so bad? Or are they right and she's the only good one of the lot?

'...Or does that mean Earth Ponies are really the bad ones? But wouldn't that make you a bad pony too? A bad pony who shouts at her one friend, a bad pony who laughs at other ponies because she's terrified at being laughed at? A coward who can't stand it when a yellow filly isn't scared of her father's money and tells her how useless she is? And is that eager for her mother, that she'd cling to any pony who reminded her of her, just like your father.

And I bet you were secretly planning to have her replace your mother! That must be why you were driving away all those pretenders to the throne (wonderful job on that by the way)! So you'd be happy! And your father would be happy! But your mother couldn't be happy with being replaced! But if you and your father are happy, she'd be happy right? But who could be happy, seeing their very special somepony in the hooves of another?

So tell me, my little pony. Is she bad or good? Are you a good daughter for going through all of this? Or are you a rotten, spoiled little retch who doesn't want to see her family back together?'

"I don't know!" I cried out, I was crying in public again. I wasn't a lady.

'That's a good filly.' The voice gave the ring of approval, then shifted to that sharp Arctic tone, 'Now keep walking.'

I obey.

++

Far away, Celestia felt a chill down her spine.

++

Did I always like things to be orderly, then become free? Naw. When growing up I didn't like knowing what happened next. I loved surprises! I guess that's why I never liked the idea of destiny, or cutie marks for that matter.

I mean, once you get it, that's it. Poof, that's all you're meant to be, the end. Where's the fun in that?

My father and my teacher spent a lot of time telling how cutie marks didn't quite work like that. I never really got most of it, but something like 'you own the cutie mark, the cutie mark doesn't own you' or something. But so long as I could get mine and still have lots of surprises, I was happy!

So how did I get into things being set and ready? Well, gymnastics, rollerblading, martial arts, all those wonderful things, I love them all. Who needs a brush or a pen when your whole body can be art? And I don't mean just sitting on your flank as some pony paints your plot! If other mares are happy being a bowl of fruit, let 'em.

Naw! It was the rush! The power! The thrill! The excitement! The exhilaration that came from just being alive! All those things? Karate, dancing, roller skating? They got my blood pumping and they kept my body fit and in control.

My parents said it also gave me focus, a direction for all that boundless energy I have. They said it was better than me climbing the ceiling like I was a pegasus! I think I even tried that once.

And what after the thrill of being alive and proving it? The excitement of competition and the delight of the win of course. So yeah, I went for all three.

I came in first place exactly once, but there wasn't one competition I entered where I didn't place.

Upset? Pst. I'm in it for the excitement first, the wins second. They were just the icing on top.

But I'm not above improving myself. How else do you get better at anything?

My teacher said I needed to get harmony into my routines or they'd look ugly nonsense. Now I'm not a pony who really cared what other ponies think about her that much. But I'm not one to not try new things either!

And I was shocked, no, seriously, like a big ka-zap! I was shocked at how -better- my performances felt, okay, a lie, I still loved to simply dance/kata/skate completely with no plan and just let my body lead me along. But, for the ones in front of the crowds, people cheered, and the judges loved them.

And that's just it, it became a new challenge, this harmony stuff, it was a new mountain to climb, and I wasn't about to back down!

That wasn't my biggest challenge of course. My biggest challenge was getting a timid fat colt to grow a spine. That part wasn't easy. But the pay off? Whoa-boy. You would not believe!

He wasn't all that bad once he learned to care enough about himself to take care of his body, and believed enough in himself to take risks. So yeah, I married him.

Like a prince and princess. We were a perfect match. I didn't want one of those self-loving jocks, or one of those upper crust snobs who treated fellow Earth ponies as genetically inferior due to having more bits to their name.

Yeah, my family read me a lot of fairytales, and I can't say I didn't like them, of course I wasn't gonna let it out I liked that sort of thing, until I met my prince.

And I could tell I was the only filly who didn't scare him. Kidding! I'm the only filly who -ever- scared him other than his mother. Yeah, our relationship didn't exactly start out the best. But it was all uphill from there, wait! That didn't come out right.

Ever read 'Gone With the Pegasi'? I haven't either. He taught me how to mingle and act among those Canterlot and Manehatten elites. I could see it in their eyes, they were all pretending like me, all hiding behind those costume masks, I never got that part about those elite ponies; if they were so successful, why couldn't they be themselves? Pst.

Then came the news I was going to have to lay off the sports for few good months. I can't say I liked the news about having to cut back on what I loved. But the end result was very very very worth it. My prince says she looks just like me, but my mane was never that straight.

For a while I was Golden Rich, but my prince told me how he wanted to end the 'family curse.' And with a name he got stuck with, I can't say I blame him, his grandfather's was even worse. His father and grandmother had been very staunch against the idea of changing your name when you got your cutie mark. I didn't mind, Diamond Tiara just rolled off the tongue so much better!

I still remember when I gave my little princess her first real and most important lesson.

"Aim for the moon, Diamonds ... always shoot for the top. Never settle for anything less than your all. And always be in control. Whether it's yourself, a group, or a situation, take command, and never let it be taken away from you. When you reach the top of the mountain, aim for the stars next."

And you can bet I took my own advice to heart. Just because I was a married mare with a foal didn't make me some glorified housewife. Wasn't gonna happen. Getting back to close to my original weight, took a while.

Like I did with my prince, I took control and I kept control, nothing happened in that house that I didn't know about and I didn't affect. Not from how much the workhooves were paid, to what hours our nanny was with Tiara, to the patterns on the napkins, to where our happy medium lay between discount and number of customers.

I had never felt so focused in my life. All the concentration I had known during my routines came back with interest, and I loved it. Everything becoming a pure laser-beam for my mind to zero in on. Everything a new challenge to conquer!

For a while I ran any ideas I had by my prince, but I eventually thought it best to just cut out the middle man.

Everything was down pat. I was happy that Silver Platter's Silver Spoon (a filly my little princesses' age) made friends so quickly with my little princess. It was almost like clockwork how she behaved. I'd think that was boring, but it made it easier for me to focus.

Silver Platter and her entourage of lady friends and trophy wives ... I can't say they were unpleasant company. But there was always something about Silver Platter. With all the other ponies I could see hints of the real pony behind the mask. But with Silver Platter, there was just, nothing, just some slight fear, all her movements had a little slight shake to them. Her eyes taking a glance in any reflective surface. I know narcissistic ponies, that wasn't the look in her eyes.

She talked about how lucky it was to be married before becoming an expired Hearth Warming's Eve Cake, and she said that if you want ponies respect, how it was best to act, and how best not to act.

I cut out time for my surprises at our family parties, I needed the extra space if I wanted to keep control and still have time for my little princess and prince.

Control. Family. Control. Family. I was always the master of my own destiny.

I was always in control. I made my own choices. No one made them for me.

I am free.

Then I had to start focusing more and more on things, it'd end up weird. I began to have strange dreams too, like that one time I thought I saw a mare moving behind the pattern on our wallpaper... I had it torn down and replaced. It was an ugly yellow anyway. But everything was fine, nothing changed, nothing a bit of focus couldn't fix!

But some of the ponies we had to hire on account of us not being able to be in two places at once didn't get it. (I hear that the Alicorns can pull off that trick, too bad they don't bother to share it. I'm sure there's a unicorn I could hire to cast the spell for me.)

First there was one of our bookkeepers who thought he could rush me ahead of my time table because he felt like it.

Next was a dishwasher who thought she was in charge of the kitchen and could rearrange it however she wanted without my consent or approval like she owned it. Don't ask me why Sliver Platter's husband hired her later.

I began to start feeling like I'm the only one who cares about maintaining the household, like everyone wanted to let the place descend into anarchy! So I worked even harder to stop them from doing it!

Then-then. My little Princess. Doesn't she know. Of course. But.

What were we talking about again?

Oh right. Then my prince came home. We had a misunderstanding, nothing major. After all, he is my prince. We worked it out. Nothing major.

I feel free again and I didn't even know I was trapped. I feel like I didn't have any bound again. No rules. No restrictions. No walls. Everything was surprises. Everything was random. I could finally see Equestria for its real shape, everything was silly pandemonium. All those heavy weights, gone.

The next day they came, the burley white pegasi. I'm not stupid. I knew where they wanted to take me. Fat chance of that happen. I had one with his muzzle in the floor making a real splash the maids were going to have trouble getting out and was working on the other two when-when

I felt-

Her forelegs. Her face. Her eyes.

Her eyes.

~~~

"I'd still go with something genetic/organic myself. She doesn't seem to have had a very unhappy life beforehand with her husband and foal, at least not from what little we've uncovered so far. Indeed, from all accounts she seems to have been the bright shining light and joy in her daughter's life. And the memories she recounts of her husband are always positive.

"And while Ponyville isn't utopia, it's not a nasty place either. There doesn't seem much room for the kind of violence and trauma that can lead to insanity as an escape mechanism as one sometimes sees in places like Manehatten."

"Professionally I think her problem may be schizophrenia, with it being mild most of the time and sometimes getting severe enough to make her an unwitting threat to herself. Her symptoms are most fitting with a form of paranoid schizophrenia, at least from what I can gather from how she justifies her attacks on her house staff, and several other factors hint she may have one other form as well. She just seems to have spiraled downhill from there. But mostly I think she just behaves in a very bizarre fashion.

"Also I think it might be important as to know a little about if she was prejudiced before she lost her mind. Something tells me if she was, it would have been the inadvertent cause of her madness, likely she was warned about a certain danger but she would have snobbishly ignored the advice from a non-earth pony."

I listen as the doctors think I can't hear them. None of my fellow residents seem to care.

I wish I could understand more of what they were saying.

"Have you noticed how subdued she's been lately? Did someone double her medication or something?"

"I triple checked, no. I've checked the records, she started to behave more after ... after the fog invaded."

"Ugh! Did you have to remind me? We're just lucky we didn't lose any patients and our one escape ended up back in her room."

"True, but it does seem to have had a positive effect on several ponies who had been making appointments here from Discord-related mental damage."

"Yes. As all those possessed mare's admirers have been saying ad nauseum! If they really believed that they wouldn't feel the need to bring it up every conversation."

I've been a 'good pony' for the last couple of months, so they trusted me to interact with a couple of the other patients as we eat breakfast. Without any utensils. With hoof-cuffs around my rear and front legs, and an orderly behind each of us and at every door. Oh and the doctors watching us like fish in a tank through a one-way mirror that didn't fool any mad pony. I still get fun from making faces at it.

They even have a few books in the corner as a treat, too bad I can't read anymore. All I see is a bunch of weird lines.

I looked at the pink wingless pegasus sitting next to me. She was a lot happier before the fog. She'd just giggle to herself. Now she moved like some kind of broken doll.

"Hi, hi, hi, heard that the fog, the fog outside, made the fog inside your head go away."

She didn't even look at me. Well that was kind of rude!

"I think you looked great in that suit of armor, and those butterfly wings you had were really beautiful."

Like she didn't even hear me.

Screw Loose happily barked at us. Screw Loose isn't her real name, and neither is Barking Mad like some of the other orderlies call her. The orderlies sure like giving us pet names. None of them are as nice as the ones my prince give me.

"The doctors say you can go home now if you just promise not to cut yourself."

My eyes narrowed. I don't like being ignored.

Barking Mad leans over the table panting with her tongue out of her mouth at us.

I say, "Sit."

Good doggy.

"I read that unicorns whose horns get broken feel a lot like pegasi who lose their wings. But being a regular old earth pony isn't so bad."

"I'm not an Earth pony," She whispers out.

"Oh-oh-oh? No wings, no horn, sounds like an earth pony to me! Just like me!"

"No I'm not!"

The orderly spread out his wings. The pink pegasus looked at him and the center of her eyes became smaller. She looked back at me. "Er, no ... Imagine if you were stuck in Cloudsdale forever, never able to touch the ground again, Earth Pony, without a unicorn's magic to help you. With legs that'll shatter like glass or burst into flame if you twist them wrong. And then you might have an idea what I'm feeling right now."

That didn't sound nice at all. "I'm sorry."

She didn't respond.

"But don't you have family waiting for you? Isn't that worth leaving with just a little promise?"

She didn't respond again.

Too bad. I liked her as a neighbor.

I looked at the date of the Calendar. It was really hard. I knew what the month was simply from the picture on the top, and I guessed the date just from the 'xs' on the little squares.

My precious little baby hasn't visited for her birthday, Hearth Warming's Eve, or Hearts and Hooves Day (not in that order, of course). That was all I needed to know.

"Why hasn't my princess come to visit today?"

"Because you're a sick pony, and nopony likes to visit a sick pony," Said the big strong orderly behind me.

"Why did they come looking for her here when she didn't come to visit me?"

"Who's they?" The white orderly said not sounding amused.

"Heh-heh-heh. The ones who were asking about my baby of course."

"No one was. You must have imagined it Screw Ball."

I sighed.

Liar. It was a lie. Identifying liars' call signs was one of the basic lessons of high society as you built up a cache of who was lying about what.

And now I knew. My baby needed me.

I remember when the fog came. I dodged it. Then the bird gave me a day with my prince, how we were meant to be. I remember a filly scared she was going to die when the day ended.

I remember a nice mare and a beautiful but sad song.

I didn't mind when I first came here, it was just to make me well again right? Though I didn't know what was really wrong with me. The world was non-sense. Always had been, until that one wonderful day where everything made sense ... my prince ... I-I, no, I never found my prince! And I never saw my little princess either.

Then everything went back to nonsense, and they took me back here. I didn't mind. It was just to make me well again right? I didn't know what was really wrong with me. The world was non-sense.

But ... after that day with my prince ... the world was still nonsense ... but for the first time since I came here. I hurt. I wanted to understand again.

But there was something I still wanted more. No. Somepony I needed more. Somepony who needed ME more.

"FETCH GIRL!" I tossed one of the bone shaped treats that Barking Mad insisted on eating over my shoulder. She went for it, leaping onto the table and into the orderly behind me, knocking over the chair she was in and sending the orderly behind her off balance as well. The orderlies near the doors instantly began to move in.

The pink pegasus observed it all like a tailor's dummy.

I didn't go for the keys like they thought I would. I simply dislocated my hooves and slipped out of the cuffs and knocked them back into place. I got right in the path of the orderly heading from the door, the obvious exit of course.

I grabbed him, used his momentum, and sent him crashing through the one way mirror. I followed through the shattered mirror.

I landed on top of his white mass now red and pink with blood.

I looked at the two doctors.

"Please let me out with your security card, Dr. Head-Scratcher, or I'll invent the pony pretzel." I politely told him, but I kept my voice stern, like a mother warning a child. Dr. Freudian Excuse came at me from the side, side hoofed him in the face so he could take a quick nap.

The nice and good pony doctor took a step back, "No way Golden Tiara."

He's so brave! I'd date'im if I wasn't a married mare! But as nice as he is, he's between my princess and me, tee-hee!

I gave him a serious look, I think that scared him worse than anything else. "Yes way, actually."

A couple seconds later I plucked the security card from the ball of perfectly twisted pony limbs on the floor and ran through the staff hallway swiping through the doors with the security card. I think I heard the pink pegasus say 'Good luck.'

Then I remember the door to the outside could only be opened via the security booth. So I dropped the security card for one of the orderlies behind me to slip on and have them all crash into each other. I did a flying dragon kick at the doors.

It didn't go flying off it's hinges like it was supposed to. Dang, must have reinforced it since last time. I just braced against both sides and -ugh- broke the door frame apart! And there it went!

As I ran outside I found the new electric fence was closed. One of the orderlies was kind enough to test it for me as I got out of his way and gave him a little push and he even let me use his back as a stepping stone as I back flipped over the fence and onto the ground on the other side. A perfect ten landing! Freedom! I turned and ran right for--a second electric fence? Okay, now that's just cheating!

Oh well. I'm either never coming back to this place, or I won't have a reason to ever leave. Where'd that come from? Oh right. I'm crazy. Whoa-kay! Well, nothing is keeping me from where I need to be. Up the electrified fence I climb and down the electrified fence I climb.

How do you climb a fence when you don't have digits or cloven hooves? Well I really had to be careful not to get my mane caught let me tell you!

I waved a smoking hoof at the orderlies. I noticed something didn't feel right.

"Whoops. I think my heart's stopped." I banged my chest a few times. "Give a tick to restart here and, there we go!"

One of the orderlies actually stared at me like I was some kind of monster. "How, the bucking moon, what is she? No pony endures that kind of pain!"

Well since he asked. "When I was a filly, I fell down a cliff while roller skating onto jagged rocks and broke every other bone in my body. The emergency aid ponies who saved my life didn't have any pain killers or nerve numbing spells. I was fully conscious for every one of my bone being set! Every pain since then has been a tickle! Now if you excuse me, my princess needs her mother, and I'm not going to keep her waiting!"

I dodged to the right as a tiny feathered needle stabbed the ground where I was standing a moment ago.

Dr. Freudian Excuse load another tranquilizer dart into his rifle.

I pouted, "Hey no fair! When did you get those?"

"You've done wonders for proving we needed a bigger budget, Golden Tiara!" Dr. Freudian Excuse said as he shot at me through the two fences again. His cutie mark should have been a bull's eye.

I ran off holding onto my beanie as they fired off several shots at once, leaving a beautiful outline of my figure against of the nearby trees that the nature reserve society had prevented from being uprooted and relocated from around the Ponyville mental ward.

The orderlies of course took to the air in the meantime, but I was confused for a bit when their angry shouts turned fearful and suddenly a lot more distant. Then I heard a Timber Wolf's howl, followed by a chicken's caw. Then I saw a chicken head connected to a snake. Oh. One of those. That was no good.

I closed my eyes as I felt the wooden claws dig into my back, I rolled, and forwards bucked the wolf in the head, breaking its neck. I heard the chicken caw again and dived right at it. The cockatrice wasn't used to its prey coming towards it and I tackled its snaky body. I didn't open my eye. I felt its head turn a full 180 degrees and tried to stare at me. I hugged it with my fore hooves.

It clawed at my chest and forelegs as I balanced on my rear legs. I trotted forward as fast as I could towards the sound of a river from a body of water that ran from a lake near Ponyville.

I twisted the cockatrice's neck, of course it didn't break, it couldn't break. It bit me with its beak, (thankfully that cockatrice's bites could turn ponies to stone too turned out to be a myth). I leaned forward, and with my teeth I pulled its eyelids open.

It made several panicked cackles that quickly grew silent as it turned heavy in my hooves, I dropped the now more foul tasting thing of my mouth and let go. The cockatrice statue made a heavy splash in the water.

Well. That was thrilling. A lot more thrilling than I've had a long time.

... And now I realize I'm stupid and crazy.

I have no idea where my baby is.

I could simply ask my prince, but the place is going to be crawling with Day Guard ponies by the time I get there and if he's let our daughter hurt like this for so long, then he must not know about it. I am an idiot.

I suppose I could ask Silver Platter, but I can't shake this strange urge of wanting to feed my friend her own parasol for some reason. And she's not likely to say much with it stuffed down her throat.

Have I given myself an impossible jump? My little diamond.

Oh it's you guys again. Can't you see I'm kinda busy? You insist? Fine. But can we be quick about this?

Yes, I know I don't have a clue where my baby could be.

Yes, I know if/when I get caught this time I'm going to be lucky if I only get is chained and muzzled with enough weights to keep down a dragon. I'm insane, not blind.

What were you guys whispering to each other? More questions? Seriously, I've got to-, alright, alright.

'Would my prince protect my little princess?'

Of course he would! Don't you dare ask that question again!

'Would she have one of the maids tell me something was wrong if she couldn't herself?'

That makes sense. I guess she would. The maids always deliver her card when she can't come herself.

'Would I be told if she was hurt?' Why wouldn't I be?

'So if she isn't hurt, but can't have any of the servants send me a message, or have my prince protect her, what does that mean?'

She's ... gone? No no no no!...Oh, just gone as in away! Yes that has to be it! She must not be in Ponyville! That's kind of a relief, the guards won't find me before I find her.

So where would she go if she's gone away? There's not really any relatives she likes visiting and Silver Spoon lives in Ponyville.

Is my princess a prim and proper lady?

Of course she is, she's a perfect little angel.

So where would a prim and proper lady go if she's not in Ponyville?

MANEHATTEN!

...What's with all the face-hooves?

'Is Manehatten too long a distance for a little filly to travel all on her own without knowing the way?'

I guess it is, kinda.

This is really making my head hurt.

'Why am I repeating all your questions?' I dunno. Why not?

Oh, wait! If she's not in Ponyville, and she's in danger, that means maybe she was kidnapped! Of course! She must've been kidnapped! Ok, if she was kidnapped, where would they take her. Don't talk, I'm thinking!

Ok, let's see, this is going to be like a needle in a haystack...Why do they always put the needles in the haystacks? Wouldn't they be harder to find in a needle stack?...Wait! It'd be harder to find because it fits in with all the other needles! So if somepony kidnapped my baby, they'd hide her where she'd fit in!

Alright, where would she fit in? Let's see...Ah! She's a princess! There's only one place where princesses live! They must've taken her to Canterlot!

Huh? Why the silly face? You know, if you don't pick your jaw up off the ground, it'll stick that way!

Sorry, no more questions! My baby needs me!

Oh! Canterlot's the other way? Thanks!

Wait. Canterlot! That's where she is! That's where she needs my help!

Diamond! Hold on! Mommy will be there soon!

Comments ( 260 )

I loved the part at the end with Golden. Best part of the chapter. The rest was kinda dry

1054605

Thanks.

And yeah, the medic unicorns saved her life, barely, and it likely took her a year to recover, if not more, but she was a growing filly, but the end result was that she has an impossibly high pain tolerance.

1076244

This was one of LZ0's works, with a LOT of editing from me and Kendell2.

I am sorry to so I could not finish this chapter. From the first line of '+'s, I got confused. I tried to read on, but it got more confusing. After a couple of more paragraphs, I had to stop. It's probably just me, but I had to much difficulty following who was saying what after those '+'s. This was the first chapter I honestly could not finish.

1093183

Heh. That was the idea.

1094432


++++++ Silver Spoon
I dropped my namesake out of my two hooves back into my soup bowl when I saw that pony toss. Mom dragged me back home with barely a few well chosen excuses.
That was when he dyed his coat from brown to black. And began wearing his old silver onyx neck ring opposed to his respectable business tie. Anyone calling him by his birth name was thrown out the door with the pink slip shoved in their mouth. I nearly got hit by one that went flying out the door.
Diamond had told me he had refused to see a doctor following the chaos monster's rampage, and those that came to see him were quickly escorted off the grounds. That was one of the last things she ever told me before, before she said those black words to me...


+++++++ Diamond Tiara
The maid wasn't the first purple Earth pony to be mounted by Onyx Tiara in his bed since his wife had become Screwball, and she likely wouldn't be the last. There had been many, none had so far had become pregnant. Streaks of violet and white mane, purple eyes, a lavender coat, any detail, any resemblance, was enough to earn a night with the black furred earth pony.
Sometimes he'd give compliments, sometimes he'd prove himself a charmer and woo them to a night with him. But each night, every climax, would end the same, with him shouting only one name, and only one name, and for that name to be muttered in his sleep next to whatever mare was with him that night, and they'd eventually leave, taking whatever trinkets he offered in compensation.

++ (Screw Ball.)
Did I always like things to be orderly, then become free? Naw. When growing up I didn't like knowing what happened next. I loved surprises! I guess that's why I never liked the idea of destiny, or cutie marks for that matter.


There. That less confusing now?

1094744 Yes, I can follow it now. I just got finished reading it. Thank you.

1152786

YES! VERY MUCH SO! As was Fluttershy's transformation into Nightmare Whisper inspired by Sayaka's fate.

1154632

Thanks. That episode was kinda a black sheep since it was original meant as a framing device. I'm happy that part still works.

1188952


Welcome? Well their adventures in the POV Verse tend to be rather over the top.

1248470

My fic is bloated with tributes to that series.

1254864

You'd have to ask LZ0 who wrote the chapter.

1300625

Trixie would have been the one humiliated. Since Trixie had clearly no idea she was taunting Celestia's apprentice.

1296712

People can put two and two together and come up with 5 or "20 over 5".

1254864

Twilight of course would reject to such a dangerous game.

1301187

There's a reference website that gives all the proper words that rhyme. And my beta-reader also added a couple scenes since he liked Zecora's rhyming.

1301397

What did I say about reading the chapters by number and not in order of posting for this season due to an oversight on that my part? Chapter 26, 27, and 28 accidentally got forgotten. So of course chapter 30 would be confusing.

1310648

I greatly loved writing this chapter. So very much. It was one of my far most loved chapters.

1313727

I forget if that was one of LZO's lines of Kendell2's, but yeah.

Mortal Kombat however was all mine.

1313125

At least she doesn't hate the CMC for what happened and accept she honestly and truly just want her to be happy.

1301619
That could be easily solved by going into the chapters and swapping the text out so they're numbered correctly (this would ensure that comments don't get deleted for said chapters, though they would be off)

Hmmm...actually, I wouldn't be surprised if Golden Tiara happened to also suffer from Autism of some sort, with Schizo being tied into it.

1315607

It's not 'swapping' I'd have to move every story down three chapters.

1315999
I have a feeling we meant the exact same thing without really realizing it.

1534984

Ironically, that one was an original technically. I got inspired by the IDEA Of super heroes creating a utopia by force from the Justice League episode 'A Better World' but the style, set-up, structure, etc, etc, was all mine.

wheres spikes interview...I wanna see!!!!!!!!:applecry:

Simultaneously giving your background ponies a chance to gain character depth and still dropping such heavy revelations... so explain to me why Laura hasn't swept you up and crowned you her successor, along with your editors and/or co-writers? You are certainly writing some massive character development and have already mentioned that you might be retiring from the Fiction game soon, does this mean you might have an apprentice to take over for you when you go?

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I have not seen any of season 3. And I shall not until the Pony POV Series is completed.

Damn, Filthy Rich/Onyx Tiara is WAY too prejudiced, Diamond Tiara fails to interpret her mother's advice correctly and is further confused by Discord and his Insane Troll Logic...*sunglasses*...talk about a screwed-up family.dl.dropbox.com/u/31471793/FiMFiction/emoticons/misc_Rainbow_dealwithit.png dl.dropbox.com/u/31471793/FiMFiction/emoticons/misc_Cloudchaser_dealwithit.png dl.dropbox.com/u/31471793/FiMFiction/emoticons/misc_Vinyl_Scratch.png dl.dropbox.com/u/31471793/FiMFiction/emoticons/misc_Lyra_dealwithit.png :coolphoto:

The really sad part is that Golden Tiara/Screw Ball seems to be more rational than her husband and daughter!:twilightoops:

I'm not going to lie to you...my feels...

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Poor Tiara family...I do hope Diamond and Onyx eventually realize how stupid their prejudices are and that Golden Tiara is able to get her sanity back...

2235889

Just wait till you reach the Mind Games season!!!

2237643

Ironically a chapter due to my own absent mindedness was pushed to the Origins arc when it appeared originally as a side story episode int he Pearls Arc. Which SHOWED Pinkie Pie's end of the world from her POV.

Hi there, again! Finished up season three and will be moving on to season four now. I'm rooting for Golden Tiara to snap both Diamond and Filthy out of their messed up worlds.

And they say that Golden Tiara is the crazy one. :ajbemused: I think it's the other way around this time. Golden Tiara I consider sane and her husband and daughter are the crazy ones.

Non the less, I will read the next season. Good season here. Tis a good season indeed. :pinkiehappy:

- Super-Brony12

2257967

I'm happy to know that you've loved what you've read so far. This season evolved naturally out of the princess Gaia saga. Mostly to allow the characters to evolve and mature on their own without having to worry about saving the world being added to the mess.

Wow she is a bit of a badass. :rainbowderp:
No offense.

2531293

She's not the same Nightmare Mirror.

2765879 who else, She climbed electric fences, dodged tranqs and escaped from an asylum, and feels no pain anymore due to a childhood accident. She is just one over sized gun and government conspiracy away from being an action hero. :rainbowdetermined2:

2765936

Keep reading. The bigger truths of her are revealed in mind games.

2771324

Actually I just screwed up. And forgot to post those chapters until weeks later when someone finally pointed it out to me.

2858079

The Book Fort is mostly a fanon in-joke now about a habit Twilight had as a child but never grew completely out of.

And as for musical statues, (which seem to assume she meant) you'll have to ask LZ since he wrote the original draft of this chapter.

Thank you very much for your comment.

2915057

"Remind me what the point of departure that they were concerned about was? I other words: What episode was going to come out that you were getting ready for?"

Family Appreciation Day, because Scoots parents might have shown up. Diamond Tiara's father showing up instead caused its own shockwaves.

And the departure point was AJ's Last Round Up episode going a different way because she had different choices.

"Also, I want to know what fics the following are references to, if any:"

None. That was Celestia's brother and Alicorn of the Chariot Tarot.

2920955

SPOILER ALERT!!! (Not picking up the full treatment just yet)

"-Maybe they really did switch hearts a bit?"

Or they were glued together.

"-Only sane mare in a world gone mad, unable to ever go mad again? And probably knowing her sanity was the price of all doom? Rainbow Dash could explain approximately how that will feel... hey, I only said "approximately", I suspect that RD had more guilt, but less hope. And then there is the matter of duration"

Depends how sadistic Discord is feeling that day I'm betting.

2936950

"Don't worry, Pinkie is not normally so . . . Extra-Pinkie."
-Weird... this is after her integration... Oh, wait, she is worried about the upcoming possibility of the universe getting re-written, and so she is trying to savor what might be her last days with her friends?

Actually she's acting extra Pinkie so the series can stay in tune in canon and won't get cut off cause she think that'll cause her universe to cease to exist.

SPOILER ALERT!!!



Now it was cluttered with furniture no pony used, filled with empty rooms, and stuffed with antiques with no pony to look at them.
-I briefly wondered if this covered all the same objects, just from a different POV (joke about the name of the collection not intended, but welcome since it decided to show up). I rather suspect that not all the horseshoes are antiques, so I supposed not.

It was the first Hearth Warming's Eve, and Day, that I spent all alone.
-For some reason this makes me think of "A Christmas Carol". On reflection it is the reverse scenario, unless Scrooge's younger life with Fizzy-wig (?) is somehow counted. Of course, just because the scenario is the reverse doesn't mean the mood can't be the same.

My name is Onyx Tiara. My birth-name, and according to the family by-laws the one I have to sign my checks with, is Filthy Rich.
-Nice way to cover the name thing again to remind people of who the character is.

But he was no fool, and he knew a success when he saw one. So he took a chance.
-Laying in an ongoing order for 100 jars of jam every year forever?

And he used those bits to buy wares from the ponies coming all over Equestria to sample the jam that existed nowhere else in the world, then sell those wares off to -other- ponies from other parts of Equestria.
-Oh, right, initially that was the ONLY thing he sold.

He met the most beautiful pony in Equestria of her day (she wrote horror novels, go figure),
-Interesting choice of profession. I wonder if it is a reference to another fanfic, or a set-up for a pun? Certainly Golden Tiara/Screwball is both wise and completely insane, which is something I think fits a lot of horror settings. Prophets gibbering in the street and such. Of course, I wonder what actually drove her mad? Something out of Everfree? Genetic predisposition (that would fit with having inherited it from her... wait, unless they are imbreeding it would have been HIS ancestor). I wouldn't QUITE put inbreeding past them, they are snobby enough for it, but I can't see Celestia allowing such a thing (Well, actually my version of her totally would allow that sort of thing, but not for the reasons one might think, and EXTREMELY RARELY).

Father had the idea of taking a loss to under bid our competitors to buy customer loyalty and more importantly to destroy their profit margin. Grandfather thought Father was insane, but it worked.
-Genius and madness are oddly close... in this case Genius became the father-in-law to madness. Birds (or in this case, badgers) of a feather (stripe) flock (cete/clan) together?

My wholesale buying and price slashing created the little empire I've enjoyed with my empress and little princess.
-So was Diamond Tiara wrong about him wishing his wife NOT get better?

I would have gone all the way back to my grandfather but I had to keep it short.
-Wait, so the family didn't come into wealth with Stinkin' Rich? I suppose that could make sense given the naming?

She was going to be the queen of the business world someday, I knew it.
-Eh, I suspect her negotiating skills will backfire on her if she doesn't change her ways.

(while eliminating the competition is a part of business, having NO competition leaves you a straw giant to be knocked over by an outside force)
-Not a monopolist then? I wonder if you included this specifically to make that point?

(after all, a business is nothing if it doesn't have its suppliers and consumers to purchase its goods).
-Until this parenthetical I thought you meant "partner" as in "Equal partner after a merger or major share-purchase" or "promoted and bought shares until she was a significant force in the company" or something like that. I suspect Barnyard Bargains isn't PUBLICLY traded, and is quite possibly something that Fithy Rich/Onyx Tiara owns outright.

I can't -believe- Silver Spoon SLEPT through it! Her family has had wealth longer than us, I figured she'd have a longer line to appreciate the history more!
-I can't remember if her reasons for doing so were covered in your stories...

Silver Axe, er, Tongue makes a good business partner though.
-Same deal as with Fithy Rich/Onyx Tiara? One the name he goes by by preference, one what he has to sign his checks with?

Yes I am aware my child doesn't have quite the same, way of speaking as me.
-Consider elipses rather than a comma for an uncertainty induced pause, which I assume this is?

With our businesses expanding beyond Ponyville, some things are simply not proper anymore. My, my wife suggested I should take a few of those elocution lessons myself.
-Until the second sentence of this pair I wondered if it was that adoption wouldn't be considered proper. It also took me a second to realize that the repeated "my" might be due less about the elocution lessons than about her current status.

Why does everypony keep saying that? And my filly isn't either!
-I remember from a later chapter that boring could be death if these interviewers are the enforcers who made the decision that rolled back G3. I seem to remember a note on TVTropes or something that said that they were more than what they seemed... in any case, wouldn't be something I had read occasionally. Maybe I just got confused with Gaia or Loneliness effecting the narrators? Incidentally, did you move the account of the fall of G3 to a sidestory, or have we just not gotten to it yet?... or were the interviewers saying something ELSE about Diamond Tiara other than that she is boring?

...I never noticed how many empty rooms this house now has until last Hearts and Hooves day.
-Change of heart, or did he miss his wife all along?

I'd give the feather duster who'd find my little filly half my fortune if I thought it would help. Diamond Tiara. Where are you?
-Second period should maybe be a comma, but that might not be what you were trying to say. And yeah, we saw this from the other side. So Diamond Tiara ran off on Hearts and Hooves day itself?

...What are you looking all ashamed about?
- So maybe these are alicorns in disguise and they ran off with DT, or at least know who did, but have a non-interference pact with that sort of thing? It could be Discord, OR a completely different draconequis (sp?).

I still have the scars from our first play-date.
-Nice...

She did not get the name Golden Skates for nothing after all, she was quite the active filly ...
-Don't know if ellipses get a space before them. More importantly, this explains the athleticism of her escapes, although her ability to cling to a ceiling makes me think she also taps into something like chaos magic, the neutral to Pinkie's Good, and Discord's Evil.

The attention and the symmetry she could give things...
-Applies to business structures and practices as well as physical action of a single body?

She was no trophy-mare, if anything I was HER trophy, HER prize! And I couldn't think of a higher honor.
-So he hides her away out of a misguided respect for what she WAS that it not be shamed by what she IS?

No, the only family history she ever talked about was a poet from the pre-tyrant era.
-Family history of remembering G3? Or maybe "Does insanity run in her family? I dunno..." or maybe it DOES and the subject just never came up? Or is this in context (specifically contrast) of Filthy/Onyx's own love for his family's history?

She says she only did it for me, but personally I think she saw it as a challenge or a glorified game of pretend that adults played among themselves. And she loved to win any game that presented itself, she was just that kind of pony.
-Nice... her delusions are certainly vivid enough... I still wonder what triggered her. Perhaps Diamond has a dead sibling? No, I would think she would have been over that by now unless she was skating through town with her baby on her back and something when wrong... or some equally "its all my fault" sort of tragedy... she certainly doesn't strike me as having a FRAGILE psyche, but then again Pinkie seemed bullet-proof in her cheer prior to "Party of One".

Then of course came the happiest day of my life: we went from prince and princess of our little world to king and queen.
-Inheriting the business? Almost certainly not. Probably the birth of DT... or her older sibling, now deceased. Maybe she found out she was pregnant again about the same time that there first child died in some horribly tragic way? And neither of them ever told Diamond? Maybe pregnancy slowed her down from making a diving save to protect her first-born? That could explain the deep denial and retreat into fantasy to protect Diamond Tiara... but then I think that Diamond Tiara wouldn't remember her very well, since I don't THINK it would have taken Golden that long to degenerate if was an external, acute, cause. That is usually for repeated trauma, or inborn predisposition.

What followed was the second happiest day of my life. Did I want a colt instead of a filly?
-Ah, so the first would probably be their wedding day. Also this makes me think that DT was always an only child.

If I did, I don't remember, all I remember is seeing the spitting image of my wife as a foal in her forelegs, nursing.
-I have at least one non-cloppy story idea which I will probably use one day, that involves nursing. I say this so it will not give the wrong impression when I say that you seem to put the mammaries(?) in the primate location, rather than the equine location. Of course, Little Ponies are halfway in between in terms of their range of motion and such.

And I knew our fairytale had come full circle with a new princess to find her prince.
-Nice touch. The end of the fairytale should be coming anywhere from the next paragraph to about five paragraphs from now.

When Golden Tiara took on more responsibilities I didn't stop her, why should I? It's not like earth pony mares are made of glass like narwhales or have hollow bones like the feather dusters.
-Overstress from work?

She then began surprising me by doing some of my workload for me. She slept less. She ate less. She never rolled back on spending time with me or our filly.
-Workaholic?

For a while she kept coming up with new ideas on the fly, then, so slowly it was like the receding of the tide, they stopped.
-Manic, with the receding being where she crossed the line of diminishing returns as far as coming up with GOOD ideas? I don't think manic-depression has that long of a time-frame. Of course, it is possible this ISN'T based on a real-world condition.

I didn't notice Silver Platter, and other mares from high brow families talking to her, about how a proper mare did and didn't act.
-Mania, or was this the SOURCE of a lot of her stress, rather than one of the reactions to her degradation from pushing too hard? I could see high society not being "a fun game to play anymore", and that could make her feel trapped and like she had to be perfect as a parent and social butterfly and business woman all at once.

I didn't notice her surprise games at parties shrinking in number and force.
-"surprise games" a symptom of her mania? I wonder what Pinkie would have thought of them? Or was she giving up on making stuff stuff interesting? I would draw the parallel of Pinkie at the GGG every day of her life.

I didn't notice her suffocating under the weight she was putting on herself.
-Ah, performance stress then.

Steam began to hiss its way out of the building pipes. Golden Tiara bucked an accountant in the face who had finished his work a day early, throwing off her plans.
-For a second I read this as "finished his word day earlier", IE left a few minutes before quitting time. This is even worse of course.

One night she smashed a plate in the face of a maid who had put them back into the cupboard in the wrong order.
-Interesting that the staff seems to be going against his wishes to help Diamond Tiara over her father now. Literary irony? Different generation of staff?

I heard the noise and came into the room. What I saw wasn't my wife.

I . . . I'm sure it was just stress, yes, that's all it had to be. There's no way that thing had been my wife.
-Gone "Twilight-Snapple" levels of disheveled trying to work out the scheduling?

It all should have gone away in a day or two. Or a week or two. Or a month or two. That wasn't her, it couldn't have been her. I wanted my princess back!
-By itself, or after he had her committed? Or did she start seeing a councilor? Probably neither, given that he mentions "a day or two" which is one session at most with a shrink. Although there could have been a councilor involved later in that "month or two".

I went before the incarnation of evil itself to beg for
-Discord?! Why would he even think of that?

her to use her magic for good, yes I was that blinded by desperation.
-Oh, right, Celestia. Apparently she didn't have time to spare (or notice the necessity of) to use her charisma to get through his mental armor to convince him she couldn't do what he needed, any more than Twilight could give Applebloom a cutie-mark (or maybe SLIGHTLY more possible... can she only attack personal demons when they are outside the person they live in?). I assume this was after the shrinks had had at least that "month or two" to work?

Now I can't bear to look at that thing! It's like looking at some grotesque parody of her!
-I see... so not wanting what she was shamed PER SE, but very close.

I even beseeched her sister once she was freed from her imprisonment, hoping another victim of the tyrant's cruelty would hear my pleas.
-Indeed... of course, she is also a "feather duster and narwhal", although I'm not sure if that figures into things.

She said in the time before her imprisonment, mind magic was not a common practice by virtue of their predecessor's horrific usage of it, and she was still learning up on the changes that had taken place since then.
-Ah, so it was "I don't know", not "Nope, wouldn't work, not possible.". Maybe the implication was that it would take decades for her to learn enough to do it, even assuming it WAS possible.

She said there was nothing she could do but give my princess dreams as pleasant as a mad mare was capable of.
-Given the direction her insanity takes, I'm surprised that they wouldn't be very pleasant indeed... or maybe those dreams are part of the reason she is HAPPILY insane? Of course, the world still "doesn't make sense" to Golden, and Golden doesn't like that. Or maybe Luna meant dreams that would be pleasant to a sane individual? I imagine if Discord dreams it is stuff that would be nightmarish for anyone else, at least to remember when they woke up.

Then Princess Cadence
-Ok, so she does exist in this continuity.

I dared ask her for help any help.
-Consider comma after the first "help".

-Jumping back a bit:
a brief respite from her exile as a threat to the tyrant's power (too many would know her for what she was if she sent another rival to the moon NOW).
-"Exile to the frozen north"? Or was she off somewhere other than Canterlot, with or without Shining Armor?

The one Alicorn the ponies knew they could trust,
-Ok, so "alicorn =/= narwhal + featherduster, but MAYBE you can trust them since they are also part of the lower class... probably not though".

(who broke into a cold sweat one patient began howling like a wolf).
-"when one", and I wonder if that was Barking Mad doing the howling?

And I knew how the tyrant would react if she found out her niece was making friends among the people.
-Well, she encouraged it of her "most faithful student"... I wonder how he DOES explain the demographics of the Elements of Harmony? Then again, AJ gives the impression of being uneducated, and Pinkie Pie is... "obviously as insane as what my wife became", so their membership would just be a trick to keep up the illusion of equality...

-Pausing to avoid losing too much progress to a single glitch...

SPOILER ALERT!!!
((Not sure if editing or starting a new post is better if the pre-existing post is already of a decent length... I suppose that the time between two edits matters because it alters how likely you are to miss an edit I make.))



She cast the a spell meant to heal bonds on myself and the parody of my wife.
-Oh my... that wasn't what he asked for AT ALL since she still has very much of a bond with HIM, although maybe not with the REAL him who might occasionally visit (but probably not). Of course, Cadance is following in her aunt's hoofsteps in that regard being the trickster when the occasion calls for it.

I...I did feel my love for Golden reignite for a brief, fleeting moment, and I think I saw the same deep in the mad eyes of that parody.
-Or just a spike showing through even though she DOES love him?

She then tried a memory spell...something it reminded her of caused the parody to become... violent.
-Ah, so not just a "I'm giving you exactly what I said I would" trick. And I imagine that the major memory that hit was of him rejecting her. I wonder if Cadance felt the first spell doing nothing of note to Golden, and being rebuffed by Onyx's defenses, and thus tried the memory spell, or if it was her planned second attempt if the first failed all along?

Cadence was lucky even young Alicorns are apparently very difficult to truly hurt and the orderlies were ready.
-Indeed... I wonder if you are going to have Twilight ascend in this continutity, and if so, if it will be via extra-dimensional adventures and reality-rewriting (I think I recall mention of extra-dimensional adventures, although that might just be G3 flashbacks with Celestia and Luna fighting a Draconoquis full-out and/or ascending themselves, rather than anything that would involve Twilight). I could certainly see you very specifically NOT having it happen since it would probably violate your definition of what an alicorn is.

The doctors refused to permit another try for the safety of all involved. Cadence asked for my forgiveness for her failure...At the very least, I don't hate her.
-Not even with a straight-jacket added? Then again Screwball is probably an old hoof at escaping those in 10 seconds flat.

One cannot fake the look of utter disbelief she had when her spells failed to reach Golden deep inside that parody of her.
-I don't think that was what she couldn't believe. She was taught by Celestia, and knows her spells I think. She knew she could only do so much for a madmare. Onyx OTOH may have surprised her.

Then came the second time in so many years that another tyrant deity made a claim on Celestia's throne but not bothering with her farce of being loving and benign,
-But Gaia was quite benign in her stated goals and motifs...

and being completely open in seeing all ponies as his playthings.
-Bolding mine. Oh, right... #1 was Nightmare Moon, #2 was Discord's return. I wonder how much progress Gaia and Celestia made on him. I suspect that will be towards the end of his part (be cause I accidentally saw that this chapter ends with Screwball as the POV I think) of this chapter. His last thought to ponder.

and then it went outside.
-Which highlights both the fact that he doesn't know about the body-part swapping, and that he thinks of anyone who goes "off" as an "it". Of course, if ponies are more anatomically accurate than they appear on the show (if heard stuff about flaps that hide those organs), but his daughter as a doll WASN'T (because even in a society of casual nudists, that might not be profitable to put on dolls, or at least not fashionable), then "it" might be technically correct.

One of the work-hooves was dusting and humming to herself, while trotting on the walls!
-I wonder if she left dents and/or dirty hoof-marks where she stepped?

His pudgy shape became athletic, his mane became white and violet with curls, his coat became lavender.
-So HE was the Screwball we saw floating around, and the real one never made it as far as Ponyville? Or maybe he just turned into a parody of either his wife or daughter to mock him?

His form shifted to alluring perfect shape I knew every detail of.
-Wife then.

Bones shifted as she became shorter.
-Or he's got foal-a-hilic urges towards Diamond Tiara that he has successfully avoided acting on... probably just a matter of his wife being smaller than the servant.

"Hello my prince, I missed you," she whispered taking off her chef's hat.
-Right, wife it is!

-Another pause here...

SPOILER ALERT!!!



Instantly her elderly and gray and faded beige colors brightened to purples and whites, her maid outfit becoming form-fitting and enticing.
-I thought he was just touching her to get her attention. Didn't realize that he was Discorded at this time. Or did he just guess he had a variation on the Midas Touch? Ooo... good reference to her name (GOLDEN Tiara/Skates).

I spotted our second, younger house keeper hiding from the potted plants she said wanted to molest her.
-I assume that HE is not going to "molest" her? I mean it would fit, but I don't think even "...and I really don't want to talk about what happened next" really fits the tone of the story (for which I compliment you). I also wonder if this is when the avoidance REALLY started, but I doubt it. Diamond Tiara would have noticed the change, rather than assuming he ALWAYS neglected his wife after she was institutionalized. EDIT: The clothing removal thing seems to indicate something like that might be coming but...

She shifted into her proper form with a white and black maid outfit to the other one's black and white maid uniform.
-So the colors on her clothing exchanged places? And is their any distinction between "outfit" and "uniform"? The second sounds more formal to me, but IF ANYTHING I would expect "outfit" to be the final state rather than the initial.

I told them to take off anything they were wearing and they obeyed without question, smiling at me.
-Getting rid of distinction, or are we really headed for an off-screen orgy? I don't think that would be a BAD literary element as a one-time thing... let me go ahead and check if this story has a "sex" tag, although I could see you not having one because of the tone, one-time thing, and the off-screen-ness...

I then ordered them to shuffle around while my back was turned. I heard them move about, but when I turned around, I could not tell who had moved where.
-Just enjoying the multiplicity, trying to make sure they are all perfect duplicates, or trying (despite being Discorded) to avoid knowing who use to be whom, rather than just not caring in the first place?

If I ever lost her I could just make another!
-Interesting point!

Then a thought hit me, of how I could reach my perfect union with her ... I touched myself. And nothing happened.
-Ok, so... good way of handling it! Another twist of the knife, obvious intent and further description possible, but nothing happens. I also wonder how safe the real Golden/Screwball would be for conjugal visits? Does she only hurt staff, or even family? Of course, if he really is ignoring her, that would be the last thing he would want to do.

My princess muzzled me from all directions.
-Reacting to his intent, or actions? Or directly orchestrated by the discording? And I think you mean "nuzzled" unless they are all reaching out their hooves to shut his mouth...

I heard a knocking on the window. I saw something purple flying above the ground with a propeller beanie. It looked at me lovingly with a smile on her face. She looked surprised and confused when she noticed my wife everywhere,
-Ouch...

but she just grinned wide and shouted, "Got room for one more?"
-Well, Insanity + Love = "Why Not?"

"Begone parody!!" I snarled.
-Right, she doesn't look right and etc...

A floating screen appeared in front of it showing a heart breaking in two.
-Nice touch.

It flew away sniffing. I ignored the thing.
-He assumes it was purpose conjured? And did Discord teleport Golden/Screwball? I suppose he must have done stuff to her directly or she couldn't (quite) fly and a bit of teleportation would be easy once he was paying attention to her. This is also where I realized it must be "nuzzled" or he couldn't talk.

I enjoyed my wife's pleasurable company several times over at once.
-So... just snuggling, or did Discord "reactivate" his reproductive organs? Or is it only his OWN touch that does nothing for some reason?

The wall of rainbow light came. Reality crashing down on me. And my wife vanished several times over, replaced by the house staff and one traumatized colt. We all screamed.
-Yeeeaah... that is going to be bad... of course at least it is a sort of bad that is somewhat known to psychology, so treatment should be somewhat easier than, say, Big Macintosh or Sweetie Belle.

I don't ... remember the next couple of days clearly. One of the maids has claimed I tried to hang myself. I do remember waking up in a hospital bed, and Nurse Redheart saying they had to pump my stomach. I came home to find half the liquor stores completely empty.
-Well, that sums it up... I wonder if the shrinks will try to move past his Discording issues to his relationship with his wife? Of course, he would tell them "I'm not paying you to <insert insulting description of what they were trying to do here>!" and probably stop seeing that one, or maybe ANY shrink, if he ever started. I wonder if his staff will be rotating out? The ones helping with hiding the dress must have been there a while I would think, although they might have still been job-hunting... either that or Celestia had a hoof in making sure that very nice ponies took up the vacated positions.

No. My wife didn't come home during the day of chaos! No she didn't! Even if I was insane I wouldn't have told her to go away! I wouldn't have rejected her even in the depth of madness.
-Denial... its more than just a river in Egypt. Also, I wonder how much of that rejection was the Discording. I implicitly assumed "Its all him rejecting her." at the time, but you never know. Also "even in the depth of madness" should maybe be "depths" and also doesn't make it TOTALLY clear if it was his own madness or hers that he is referring to. Almost certainly his own.

Surrounded by cheap replacements of her which she simply accepted and was willing to embrace along with me!!!
-Triple exclamation points make me think he is desperate in his denial.

That-that couldn't have been her! I wouldn't have said that to her! It must've have been a trick of the chaos spirit!
-Indeed. Desperate.

When I came home, I heard noise from upstairs, I found one of the servants bleeding on the forehead and another with a nasty bump and black eye
-Came home from where, and when? After the stomach pumping? Were the servants fighting about the aftermath of the "orgy" (whether or not it was that per se?)? Or did one say the other should have caught him drinking, and/or preemptively emptied the liquor cabinets (or one saying each thing about the other)?

I heard screaming coming from Diamond Tiara's room. I found her throwing her doll collection against the wall shattering the expensive glass figures, each one worth a small fortune. "It's not fair! It's not fair! Mama was free and I couldn't even hug her! It's not fair!"
-Ah, projectile damage on the servants. Also, he will be violently opposed to this idea... or maybe this will make him accept at least the possibility? That could cause him to see a shrink

She snarled and hissed words I'd never taught her at them. She never stopped screaming. What else did she say? No, please, I do not wish to recall.
-Interesting. Is she yelling at the servants or the dolls?

I took a step back when she saw me, she looked like a wild animal. She growled and galloped at me. She bucked and bit at me, I held her at hoof length. All the time screaming that she wanted her mother back and that she hated everypony. I was scared.
-She was probably yelling at the dolls then.

I took a step back when she saw me, she looked like a wild animal. She growled and galloped at me. She bucked and bit at me, I held her at hoof length. All the time screaming that she wanted her mother back and that she hated everypony. I was scared.

An hour later she calmed down enough that I could safely put her to bed.
-This re-raises the point of if Golden is a danger to family members. If so, Onyx/Filthy may be wondering if it is genetic... (which it may be, but he would be wondering for all the wrong reasons).

She kept, she kept calling for Her.
-In her sleep?

It was like knives in my ears.
-Because Diamond is hurting? Somehow I think that isn't his reason.

How dare she mention That Tyrant, like being acquaintances with That Tyrant was a good thing!?
-I see... I also am reminded that AJ just saw peices, not even achieving "snapshot" omniscience. Speaking of, I wonder how many useful factoids Fluttershy retains? Does she have a map of some areas in her head? Or when she powered down did she lose the ability to retain that much information, even if she was retaining it longer than a few seconds anyway?

I didn't bother with servants, I picked her up and tossed her out the door- "HEY! Put me down ya yellah-UGH!"
-... he has no idea what he just did. He is an Earthpony supremicist, but AJ is a truer example of the advantages of the phenotype. Of course, she's not quite stupid enough to fight back TOO hard.

My next weekly card game with Granny Smith was bitterly silent.
-This reminds me of my earlier point about how he rationalizes the Mane Six being the bearers of Harmony. And yes, I imagine it would be.

I had collected for a party the Silvers,
-Collected what? Money?

A mare and her husband spoke with each other, she asked. "Did you see Screw Ball flying over Ponyville during ... that day?"
-Blow up incoming... should let the word of his denial get out.

He laughed, "That thing was real? I figured it was just some fake pony Discord made. It was too ugly to be a real pony!"
-But except for the eyes and the Beanie I'm guessing she actually was unchanged? DIFFERENT blow-up coming... or maybe both at once? Also, getting back to his... little problem during the "Golden Touch" thing, I wonder if he is just old... nah, probably not.

I think he realized I was standing behind him after he went through the second story window.
-Not many words to reveal... unless he shouts afterwards. Plenty of reason for someone to ask him very intensely why he did that... or maybe the narrative objective here is just to ruin his social life, thus isolating him.

-To be continued, probably in a different post!

SPOILER ALERT!!!



I didn't let the doctors so much as touch me with their psycho-babble, I knew I was alright.
-His ego rivals that of Rainbow Dash (AKA "She of the Prismatic Egotism").

There was only one pony whose well being I cared about, that I could do something about after that sick day.
-Diamond I presume? He doesn't even think about his wife. Either doesn't care, or doesn't think that she would appreciate a visit from him... or just that it wouldn't actually aid her recovery? Or either of those as an excuse not to discover if that really was her outside the window? I wonder how Princess Gaia's day will effect him/be described from his perspective? The description might or might not be worth the word-count.


-More to come (obviously).

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He's just being defensive, that's all.

In spite of having surrendered to denial and paranoia, he's still at his heart an honor business and owner and honorable stallion.

SPOILER ALERT!!!
.


I didn't think Diamond Tiara truly needed anything at first. After all, earth ponies were built to take it, not like spoiled narwhals or feather-dusters.
-How much is his obliviousness/denial, and how much is her hiding it?

But then came the ... incident, on Family Appreciation Day at school, where Granny-Smith got her chance to tell what I didn't have time to.
-Was something mentioned earlier about him not being much for story telling? I might have imagined it.

And my daughter crossed the line.
-Indeed... good for him, for a split second I forgot that that was in the episode itself. Although this seems to be saying it is about more than just patching up a lucrative business relationship, rather than merely implying it.

A couple days later I had one of the visiting therapists to Ponyville do a session with my little princess, he also asked about her mother. We spoke when she was away at school.
-So after the initial session with both him and Diamond present? I wonder how the heading off of the topic worked in the actual session, including what DT had to say if anything.

From what little of her family history I've managed to dig up, I think perhaps your wife's condition is genetic.
-Thought so...

If such is the case, then I suggest you be prepared for when her child begins to suffer such ... episodes.
-That could be bad.

That doctor never set hoof on my family's property again.
-Indeed, although he wasn't violent about it probably. I do why it was a "when" rather than an "if". I also wonder how much Golden's condition could improve with some attention from him (and allowance of attention from Diamond). I get the impression from Cadance and maybe a few other things I can't recall well enough to itemize that it could really improve things. Maybe not enough to get her released, but probably enough so she wouldn't be a danger to anyone and/or would stop damaging her body trying to escape.

It isn't my princess' fault!
-Can't tell if this is singular or plural, and if singular, which one he is referring to. Then again, maybe he would call Golden "Queen" since he said she had become so upon becoming a mother?

It must be what that chaos spirit did to my poor little diamond! He did this! He must have!
-Consider "Diamond", but since he is being metaphorical, that works.

I dropped my namesake out of my two hooves back into my soup bowl when I saw that pony toss. Mom dragged me back home with barely a few well chosen excuses.
-For the first part of this I wasn't sure who the speaker was... still am not sure actually. I'm sure I'll get it in another few sentences. I'd guess DT, but she is still on her "quest", and thus wouldn't be likely to be looking at other ponies long enough to see them perform your running gag (pun not intended, but welcome since it came).

That was when he dyed his coat from brown to black. And began wearing his old silver onyx neck ring opposed to his respectable business tie. Anyone calling him by his birth name was thrown out the door with the pink slip shoved in their mouth. I nearly got hit by one that went flying out the door.
-Ok, so a memory of DT's... also "back into" makes it sound like the tiara was in the soup-bowl to begin with. Did a servant drop it their and then her dad threw them out of the house bodily?

Diamond had told me he had refused to see a doctor following the chaos monster's rampage, and those that came to see him were quickly escorted off the grounds. That was one of the last things she ever told me before, before she said those black words to me...
-Ah, so this is Silver Spoon! I'm tired or I would have realized that spoons belong in soup bowls. I don't see what seeing some random pony throw up would have to do with Onyx Tiara... wait, but SS's father isn't Onyx Tiara. Maybe Onyx Tiara was "that pony" who "tossed"? Or maybe they both wear them and they are sorta the equivalent of what wearing a Swastika (or other insignia, I'm not a student of the heraldry/iconography of racists) would be for a KKK member?

-More to come.

SPOILER ALERT!!!



The maid wasn't the first purple Earth pony to be mounted by Onyx Tiara in his bed since his wife had become Screwball, and she likely wouldn't be the last.
-Going back to the transformation, or was he cheating on her before that?

There had been many, none had so far had become pregnant.Actually, outright bribery doesn't sound classy enough for him. It also occurs to me that having Discord enhance a flaw, rather than negate a strength... well, I'm reminded of a line from the webcomic "The Order of the Stick" ... and when searching for a link to give you to the original comic, I found it has become a Trope. I also wonder how good pony birthcontrol is in your fanon, and if they usually have enough warning to use it if they want. I could see him not trusting unicorn magics, and... I'm not sure if he would qualify Zecora as "No horn, no wings, thus Earthpony" after the events of "Bridle Gossip", or if he would hold on to that prejudice (or just not trust her secrecy). I suppose if they have balloons that condoms aren't out of the question, but... schitzotech -> you can make up whatever you like. I don't think you are going in the "quiet abortions without telling him" direction, especially after what you did with Celestia's verdict on Fluttershy and why she ISN'T burning alive in The Sun.

Sometimes he'd give compliments, sometimes he'd prove himself a charmer and woo them to a night with him.
-Ok, so a mix of tactics, even though you are only describing one of them? Or are you saying he sometimes goes for more than a single night?

But each night, every climax, would end the same, with him shouting only one name, and only one name,
-I suspect he wouldn't go for it in either case, but this again raises the question of if Screwball is safe for conjugal visits. I earlier hypothesized that Cadance's bit that she knew she couldn't fix HER, but was trying to fix HIM on the sly (following in Celestia's hoofsteps). If so, I suspect that Screwball at least WOULD be safe for those if Onyx was Kinder and more Loyal to her... although he does have a trace of Loyalty (even if iperhaps n the form of perfectly appropriate possessiveness) in that it is still her name he shouts.

and for that name to be muttered in his sleep next to whatever mare was with him that night, and they'd eventually leave, taking whatever trinkets he offered in compensation.
-I see... and next paragraph we will get to find out if he sometimes uses threats, such as more veiled forms of "Refuse me, and you will never work in this town again."

And if they tried to stay hoping to erase the name from his mind with their passion or endure being a instrument of vicarious desires for the sake of the prize, they'd see how much of my father's line bred true onto the next generation.
-A contingency only, right? I briefly wondered if this meant the insanity, but that isn't part of HIS biological family. Did he mean that his children would be master business ponies? An excuse to dump them when he felt like it, because surely such a child could support them richly in their old age?

I had no experience with pranks beyond the mean spirited taunts and cruel lies towards blank flank fillies, so all eyes would be on THEIR worthless backsides rather than my worthless backside.
-I wonder if this is Diamond talking now? Probably not. Interesting that he admits himself to be worthless, but it makes sense that he would feel guilt over cheating I suppose. I guess that Discord took away his love of his wife, which MIGHT be seen as the highest of his virtues... well, other than what you said about "he's still at his heart an honor business and owner and honorable stallion. ". Or maybe we are supposed to pity him a bit more than that and have sympathy, if not acceptance of his cheating?

But I learned very quickly, and could be more vicious than a griffon if I fancied. And I would protect my mother's empty seat from anyone who'd dare try to steal it.
-Ah, so it is Diamond talking. Also, this implies that he only started cheating AFTER Discord's Day. Score a point for Discord, and give The Devil His Due. This is probably the longest-held victory for creating Evil, rather than merely causing Pain, he has scored short of his continued influence on DT herself. I do wonder, perhaps based on spoilers I didn't avoid if the one corrupting DT will turn out to be a DIFFERENT Draconequus... I also wonder where the G3 flashback went to...

-Going to pause here to look for it. To be continued in this or another post.

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He cries out Golden Tiara's name during the love making, and he calls out her name in his sleep. And he ultimately only picks mare who share her coloring. They're all replacement gold fish. But none of them ARE Golden Tiara, so they don't have a long shelf life.

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