• Published 27th Jul 2012
  • 2,512 Views, 28 Comments

Checkmate - Amit

  • ...

Res Ludo

The circular room of the hovel was quiet and slightly dark. The table in the centre was its only decoration, besides the Royal Guards standing at the eastern entrance and the changelings standing at the west. The war had been going on for a while; the guards, in particular, had a noticeably sharp edge to their movements, a sort of heavily-practised restraint.

Perhaps because the object of their worship was playing chess with the object of their damnation.

Chrysalis pushed a pawn forward.

“I don’t think you understand.”

Celestia pushed one in return.

“I don’t believe I do, Queen. In all my millennia of rule, I have never understood you.” She looked down at the board. “En passant.”

Chrysalis pushed a rook forward.

“And in my hundred, I never have you.” She poked at the piece absentmindedly. “It’s very simple, Celestia. We simply need you to sign the treaty which we have so graciously offered.”

Celestia captured the rook with a pawn of hers.

“That isn’t what I fail to understand, Queen. What do you gain from fighting us? You feed on love—how do you live in war?”

Chrysalis pushed another pawn forward.

“The love of the mare for her gone foal. The love of the filly for her lost colt.” She allowed herself a very slight laugh. “That kind of love is delicious, you know. A bit sour, but so, so sweet.”

Celestia pushed a pawn only a single space forward.

“If war nourishes you, why would you seek peace?”

Chrysalis pushed her pawn to be capturable by Celestia’s.

“You hurt my feelings, Celestia. I can be altruistic as anyone else.”

“I highly doubt that.” She grit her teeth a little as she looked down at the board and pushed another pawn forward. “En passant. What game are you playing?”

“Fine, fine. I’ll give up my game.” She pushed another pawn forward. “You do know what happens after a war, yes?”

Celestia’s hoof tapped against her chin. She had a slight tenseness about her; within the second, the adjective had lost its adverb.

“You don’t just want to live among us.”

Chrysalis grinned.

“What’s that language you keep using, Celestia?” She took a glance to the pawns she’d discarded. “Ah, yes. L'amour en passant is much more satisfying du robinet. Your move.”

Celestia brought out a knight.

“I am not going to allow you, Queen, to soil our blood with yours.”

Chrysalis put forth her queen.

“You are a ‘god’, aren’t you? You feel the cries of your subjects, just as I do?”

Celestia advanced her knight.

“What does it matter to you?”

Chrysalis let her queen settle out of the knight’s range.

“Do you hear their cries? Their screams to you and their pleas to you and their love for you?”

Celestia captured the queen with a pawn.

“The pleas. The cries. Sometimes the love.”

Chrysalis advanced a bishop and landed diagonally to the knight.

“You should thank us. We take most of the love before it reaches you.”

Celestia took the bishop with another pawn.

“Queen. I have presided over this world for millennia and I will live until this world is nothing more than a cold, decaying cinder. I have seen more bloodshed than you will ever be able to imagine, and I will see more that you will ever believe. You will not intimidate me.”

While she spoke, Chrysalis moved another pawn.

“But it hurts, doesn’t it? It hurts so much.” She raised an eyebrow. “Perhaps you know the tiniest fragment of what it feels to be the queen of a starving hive.”

Celestia moved another pawn of hers.

“You know nothing of my troubles. Your lives are short, violent, brutal. My little ponies have lived in peace for centuries.”

Chrysalis advanced her pawn.

“And that’s why we’ll win this war.” She tilted her head to the side a bit. “I hope you know that they don’t have to be short. With enough love, we can live until the stars themselves wane.”

Celestia moved her own, and then hers.

“Perhaps I should love you enough to make you suffer that fate with me. En passant.”

Chrysalis laughed and pushed a knight onwards.

“Spiteful love. I’ve had that before; it’s quite tangy. I’m feeding off your love right now, you know. For your little ponies. It’s really very nice; I think your analogy would be the taste of figs.”

Celestia captured the undefended knight with a bishop.

“Enough. I’m not going to sign the treaty, Queen, and that is final.”

Chrysalis put her remaining rook on the field.

“Your people are going to lose. They won’t fight without loving you, and we can leech from that. The only way you’re going to win is by exterminating them. And we don’t kill them, you know. We make them ours. Most of them don’t want to go back to you.”

Celestia captured the rook with her second knight.

“I refuse to debate this further, Queen.”

Chrysalis pushed her king to the side, hiding it behind a pawn.

“Do you hear their fading screams as we drag them into our pods?”

Celestia took the pawn with her queen.

“You’re losing. Check.”

Chrysalis took her queen with her king.

“Your people will fall. Your pitiful little unicorn love magic only made me stronger. You will be the ruler of an extinct people.”

Celestia moved her bishop in and took the king.

“Checkmate. I won. I won, Chrysalis.”

“Ooh. Finally using my given name? How kind of you, Celly.”

Celestia grinned in a slightly manic manner. “No matter what you say, Queen, I have won today. I will win. Magic is eternal, and friendship is magic. You will be driven from our lands, and my little ponies will be free from your clutches.”

Chrysalis rolled her eyes.

“It’s just a game, Celestia. You’re still losing in real life.”

Celestia stood and stared at her for a bit, making as if to clear an obstruction from her throat.

She turned wordlessly around, preparing to leave the place; the Royal Guards glanced at Chrysalis wearily.

“Don’t you want another game?”

She didn’t turn around. “No. No more games.”

The Princess walked out, and her guards followed.

The Queen called after her. “Hey! Does that mean I can have your stuff?

No response came.

She shrugged. “I guess I can add that to the warchest.”

Queen Chrysalis picked the chess set up with her magic, carrying it away cheerfully as her guards saw her out.

Comments ( 28 )

A well-written, intelligent story! I hope you write more like this in the future.

Troll Chrysalis?

... Trolsalis?

I really liked this, it makes it so very interesting to see the spoils of war.

... and as Celestia's chariot disappears over the horizon, the carefully concealed miniature thaumaturgic explosives concealed in each and every chess piece explode in unison, wiping out Chrysallis, her guards, and leaving a mile-wide crater where they had stood...

Funky story, Dudebro.

this is now canon :trollestia:

(fun fact: I originally intended the story to be a pure darkfic and end with Chrysalis' army simply jumping in, the summit being a little delay, but I figured that would be too out of the blue; hence, slice of life-comedy instead)

I liked this, but I wish you had kept the darker tone. I found the change from dark to comedic rather sudden and disconcerting and, frankly, out of place. Then again, that may just be me.


Although it was very intelligent and interesting, it wasn't funny.





To be fair, though, I did originally plan this to be a pure darkfic; it's just that the dialogue happened to flow towards comedy while I was writing it. I kind of wrote the whole thing in one short burst - as with most of my stories - so it's pretty unpolished.

This kind of reminds me of how Professor Xavier and Magneto often play chess with each other in the X-Men comics and movies.

Dispite Chrysallis trolling Celestia, she did use a lot of logic.

This I like. Congratulations sir, you have earned a thumb, a fav and a watch, all in one.

Enjoy them.

Sounds like Ol' celly need something that will give no love to their enemies.
Maybe she could learn how to make bombs from studying humans.

:pinkiegasp: thi1s just got interesting!!!:moustache:


not really

980783 That is just SO canon. :rainbowlaugh:

Also, great story :twilightsmile:

That's what Celly needs to win! Humans! The only species in existance that can kill so cold bloodedly, efficiently, and brutally! W00T, Human Pride win!

Unfortunately, Chrysalis caches wind of Celestia's plan and summons another faction of humans as a countermeasure. Magic, technology, and the destructive urges of universes collide.

Celestia summons a band of gallant, honorable "knights". On their home world, they dedicated their lives to saving lost knowledge and protecting the innocent. They are the Brotherhood of Steel.

She has also brought forth a smaller band, but one not lacking in skill or power. They have no one nation; rather they are the combined result of a mighty alliance, each member sending its best operative and equipment. They fight on the front lines against the enemies of freedom and peace. They are Rainbow Six.

Chrysalis has called forth an army of maniacs and sadists, who pervert science and nature, and would challenge the gods themselves in their manicial lust for power. They are HYDRA.

The parasite queen has also enlisted her own smaller, elite unit. This band of mercenaries and thugs fights at the behest of a monolithic, world-conquering corporation lead by a man seeking immortality. The mercenaries revel in battle, treating it as nothing but...a game. They are RED Team.

Let the games begin!

984913 That sounds AWSOME!!! And although I love the BoS, and Rainbow Six, and all things good... I feel like Chrysalis is going to win. There is just no stopping RED Team, although I do have one question. If Pyro sees a wonderland like place during battle, does he see a battlefield in wonderland?

985164 Unlikely. In the comics on TF2's website, Pyro comes off as rather calm, almost childish (the Christmas comic depicts Engineer reading to Pyro, the latter sitting cross-legged on the floor, looking ADORABLE.). So it's unlikely he would see a wonderland as a hellish battlefield, if he doesn't seem to see a normal place as anything but just that. [maybe there's some kinf of drug in his gas mask that makes him hallucinate? :rainbowhuh:]

pretty well written. i like chrysalis's characterization similar to celestia's. ending has places it can go.

Celestia would crush Chrysalis and all the changeling horde... by herself... in minutes....

Because she's a badass goddess

“Do you hear their fading screams as we drag them into our pods?”

*Shivers* Brr. That's horrifying.

Makes me wonder why Celestia and Luna are waiting on Operation: OBABNF.

Orbital Barrage of Amorphous Balls of Nuclear Fusion!

This is kinda how this went down for me:

Part 1 of 5 Dark
Part 2 of 5 Dark
Part 3 of 5 Dark
Part 4 of 5 Dark
Part 5 of 5 Comedy

One of these things...

Also, Celestia kinda feels a bit like a try hard...

I dunno, it felt a bit unengaging. The overt chess juxtapositions didn't really add much, and they were all that happened.

But the ending gave me a lol, so I'll settle for being ambivalent and not vote.

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