• Published 3rd Jul 2018
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The Humble Prince - Lighting Ace

A man wakes up to find he's inhabiting the body of cartoon horse who wasn't exactly Mister Popular judging from how shocked they are when he says things like 'please' and 'thank you'.

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Royal Training Session (RB and BS)

Stirring himself awake, the Blue Ronin stared at the ceiling deep in thought. Questioning himself if he made the right choice, as well as wondering, what kind of training the 3 founders of Equestria had in store for him that would guarantee results in just one month. His answer arrived almost immediately after blinking only once when he found himself face to face with Pudding Head, smiling widely at him. This, of course, startled him greatly and nearly gave him a heart attack.

"Oh good! You are awake. That means that we can start now!" She greets him with a happy voice as she backs away from him. Holding his chest, Blueblood glared at the mare "Pudding Head, how long have you been staring at me while I sleep?" He inquires angrily, only for her to giggle in return.

"Silly prince, you shouldn't be asking questions you don't want to hear the answers to!" She responded cryptically before turning around. "Now come! We are all waiting for you in the garden!"

Blueblood blinked few more times, mulling that nonanswer in his mind, but ultimately decided to let it go and followed Pudding Head through the hallways, heading to the garden. Taking the occasional glance at the condition of the place, he was still impressed on how despite being thousands of year old, the castle still stood tall and proud. No doubt thanks to the help of Discord in restoring it, but in the back of his mind, he couldn't stop wondering exactly how much Discord restored and what the pillars did themselves.

"Chancellor, you do know that I'm no longer a prince right?" Blueblood looked ahead to see Pudding Head. "You don't need to be calling me that anymore."

"But that is what you are silly, what else would I call you?" Pudding replied.

"Just call me Ronin, that is what I am after all. Remember? I lost my rights, so that is my name now."

"Hmmm…nope, I don't buy it, 'prince' suits you much better." Pudding Head quipped back.

"It doesn't matter it suits me or not, Chancellor. I can't just go around still calling myself prince." Blueblood attempted to explain.

"Exactly! You don't put it on yourself or have any say in the matter." She regards him with a smirk "A title is something you are given by everyone else, whether you like or not. And I say, you are Prince Blueblood, so get used to others calling you that." She tells him. "That is how things work here in Equestria!"

The prince tried to argue back but found it impossible to argue with her logic, so he decided to remain quiet and keep walking until they reached the hallway exit. They then stepped into a garden reclaimed by nature and filled to the brim with debris, spiderwebs and fallen logs. In the middle of all that, Hurricane and Platinum were waiting for them. The former was doing some push-ups with only one wing while the other was enjoying some tea under a well-kept marble gazebo.

"About darned time you showed up!" Hurricane complained, ending her repetition by jumping backward and landing in front of Blueblood. "I don't know how things work now, but in my time, it wasn't a good idea to make your commanding officer wait!" She treated him with a glare until Pudding chuckled and patted her head. "There, there Hurricane. We know you're just excited, but remember, this is just day one, so let the poor colt settle in first."

The commander rolled her eyes before walking away. "Whatever, just try not to waste the day snoring, ok?" Hurricane asked as she goes to sit on a rock nearby.

"Ok, I'll be going and making breakfast then, bye everypony!" Pudding Head called out to the group in a cheery singsong voice before dashing away. The ex-prince looked to his teachers in confusion.

"I'm that late?" Blueblood inquired with some embarrassment.

"Oh not at all, dear. That's just Hurricane being herself." Platinum tells with a roll of her eyes as she stands up and approaches. "You know what they say. "Once a soldier always a soldier." " She quotes with a chuckle before clearing her throat. "Anyway, before we start your training there is one issue we must address first."

"What is it?" Blueblood asked in wonderment as he waits for his training with some anticipation.

"Well dear you see, when you really try to concentrate on your magic, when you clear your mind and try to focus into casting complex spells like any other pony in Equestria…you suck." Queen Platinum states flatly to Blueblood with a calm smile, bringing his enthusiasm crashing down.

"But that is neither your or your teacher's fault. You can't learn magic the same way we ponies do. For you to truly understand the concept of magic, and more importantly, be familiar enough with it that it becomes an extension of your body, we will have to make use of two things. The first is a particularly useful spell that my good friend Clover the Clever taught me while my companions and I ruled over Equestria." Platinum explained with pride. "And then this." She then proceeded to show the Ronin a pair of iron handcuffs…or rather hoofcuffs without a chain and instead sported brightly polished red oval gem embedded in the center of both.

"I will explain the spell later, but for now, I will need you to trust us and put these on, dear." She issues, remaining calm and giving him the hoofcuffs.

The prince inspected the adornments and weighed them for a moment before looking at Platinum. "You are not joking, aren't you?"

Platinum shakes her head. "Not in the slightest, and I will not lie, it will be hard, but the results will be more than worth it." She tells him with a smile. "Please honey, trust us. This will guarantee fast results." She encouraged him again, so with a sigh and his goal still fresh on his mind, Blueblood put them on. Immediately after, the gems in the shackles shone and joined together as if attracted magnetically.

Surprise by the action and finding new weight the Ronin almost fell forward on to his face if not for the intervention of Platinum. "Careful dear, no one likes a prince with mud on his face." She commented while maintaining a calm smile, helping him sit before explaining the situation.

"As you can see, those are not ordinary bracelets."

"I noticed," Blueblood replied, trying to spread his forehoofs in vain. It seemed that the more force he applied, the heavier and stronger their hold got.

"That particular gemstone you obviously saw is notorious throughout all Equestria for being particularly sensitive to magic and for discharging magnetic fields once it is affected with such, and by shaping it into a pair of identical gems…"

"Oh for ponies…! We are not teaching a classroom Platinum." Hurricane exclaimed in exasperation and pushed her over before grabbing the shackles and lifting Blueblood into the air in the process. "Short version, unicorns wear this, and their magic feeds those rocks and binds their hooves together, end of story." She drops him and crosses her hoof. "There, I explained everything, can we move this along?" She complains.

"Wait! if they feed on magic, how do I take them off?" The prince asks in surprise.

"I was GETTING there!" Platinum interjects, using her magic to push Hurricane away. "As I was saying, the gems keep the shackles together but if you pour in enough magic…" Platinum demonstrates by charging her horn and casting a beam at the bracelets, which grew lighter and separated from one another, then letting the prince stand up.

"…you can cancel their magnetic field. You understand it now dear?"

"I think so, yeah."

"Good." She ends the spell, and once again the Ronin’s hooves snapped back together. "Because you are going to spend a lot of time wearing them." Platinum announced "You see, the reason why you can't perform any sort of spell properly is that you are not used to your natural magic. Physically speaking you are at the peak of your health, but mentally, when it comes to using your horn…you are basically a toddler. And that is when those bracelets come to play." Platinum start to circle around him.

"The 3 principles of casting magic might have worked, giving you a base. But now we will use 3 human principles to help you get your mind up to speed with your body. You must be more than familiar with these ones since they have become the cornerstone of humanity in their society, culture, and nature since its origins."

"The cornerstone of our society?" Blueblood mumbles, trying to figure what Platinum was talking about.

"Adapt, Improve, Evolve." Hurricane answers shortly after. "Those are the 3 principles that your race have ingrained in their society since the times of cavemen to survive. And no matter how many times I think about it, I still find it incredible how your species grew and evolved from the bottom of the food chain as mere scavengers all the way to apex predators. If you weren't here as proof, I would say that it sounds like a wish-fulfillment story."

"Well, thanks," Blueblood mutters quietly, slightly flattered and humbled by Hurricane words.

"And using those principles, we are going to help you embrace your new anatomy and environment!" Platinum tells him with a smile. "First we will adapt your body to understand magic in its more raw form until it becomes instinctive, and then we will move on to improve it by starting your magic lessons properly and then…well, you will see." Platinum smirks at him cryptically.

"Until then, here is your first task." Hurricane looked at him with a smirk before pointing at the unkempt garden. "While wearing those, you are going to used a simple levitation spell to get rid of all the rocks, fallen logs, debris and any other junk in this place."

"What?!" Blueblood almost took a step back at her instructions before looking at the disaster waiting for him. "You want me to use all of my magic trying to lift and toss rocks around?"

"Oh no sweetie, that will only be your morning training." Platinum continued, scaring the poor stallion even more. "As I said, we are going to adapt your body by subjecting you to all sorts of training exercises until you can endure a whole day keeping those shackles apart."

"Can I at least have some breakfast first?"

"Nope," Hurricane tells as she and Platinum leave the place. "That will be your reward, you want a proper meal? You will have to earn it. Until then it will be just water, rice, and bread for you".

"And before you ask, the planning and strategy will come after you are done training, same with the spell of Clover. So do not worry, we will have plenty of time for that later. Until then, best of luck!" Platinum waves goodbye and both mares left Blueblood alone with his task quite literally in front of him.

With a sigh, the prince bowed his head down before looking at his task with some dread. Yep, this is going to be hard.

And so days pass. As the prince continued his grueling training under the guidance of the three founders of Equestria. Each of them agreeing among themselves to take different approaches to his training.

Hurricane decided to implement regular combat sessions in the afternoon.

"Come on rookie! You call yourself a stallion? Show me some backbone!" Hurricane demands as they sparred with wooden wasters. The Ronin was doing his best to remain standing all the while holding the practice sword with his mouth.

He mumbles something before being struck down and be pointed at by the point of Hurricane’s sword.

"Pathetic, again!"

"I can barely move like this!" Blueblood complained as he showed her the shackles.

"Do you think your enemies will care?" Hurricane bellowed at him as she continued attacking, making him roll over and grab the sword to block another strike. "Being a good fighter means to be able to prepare for anything that the world will throw at you. Fighting with honor means to never underestimate your opponent, and if you wish that your opponents fight fair, you first need to show them what will happen if they don't!" She strikes him again but this time offers her hoof to help him stand up.

"Cheating is the way of the cowards and means to be a one trick pony. You can be much more than that rookie, you just need to stop thinking on how little you can move." She lifts his shackles. "And start thinking how to move with these on." She tells them with a smile. "Now come on rookie, show me how a human mind really thinks!" She tells him, dropping back to being on guard once more.

Blueblood smiles and does the same as they resumed the fight.

Platinum would give him cleaning or construction tasks in the morning.

"Now I want this room sparkling clean, and rebuilt…" She ordered Blueblood showing him a room completely covered in a layer of dust, spiderwebs, broken glasses and furniture, and god knows what else. "…by noon" She finishes. "Fail, and you will start all over again tomorrow."

"All over again? How I will be starting all over…" At that moment Discord appears and tosses a bag full of dust into the room and then appeared next to them with a painters outfit as he kisses his claws. "I dub you 'Le Mess.'"

"Of course." Blueblood sighed before coughing violently from the dust. "Don't forget to cancel those shackles while cleaning dear! That will really help you build up your stamina and control!" Platinum called out as she left.

"Oh don't worry Bluey." Discord comfort the Ronin. "Just wait until you see what I did to her cape," he says with a chuckle. At that moment they both hear the princess scream in a fury. "DISCORD! I'm going to strangle you with your own TAIL!" She screeched, completely livid.

"And that's my cue!" Discord snapped his fingers and disappears, leaving Blueblood to begin his task.

And Pudding Head went with her unique training method of escaping a room she called the ‘prank room,’ filled to the brim with booby traps everywhere.

Crawling away from the room, the ex-prince panted in exhaustion with a pie smeared on top of his head as Pudding Head stop a timer. "Six hours? Oh come on Bluey, I know you can do better than that. Were you even trying? It was the pies, right? You couldn't resist tasting them, right?" She poked him a couple of times. "Well sorry, they are made with shaving cream. Remember, rules are rules!"

"You blindfold me and spin me around before tossing me inside…that." Blueblood finally answered after recovering enough air to speak and breath.

"You must always be prepared for the element of surprise…So surprise!" She yells while grabbing a lever. "Oh god, please don't, don't, DON'T!"

She pulls it, and the ex-prince is immediately tossed back inside the prank room which locks itself once more.

"Just one more run through and we will call it a day!" Pudding Head tells him before she starts eating a pie.

Days turned to weeks, weeks into months, and before he realized it, Blueblood had the nagging feeling that a year was coming to a close as improvements began to show; control in his magic improved significantly.

His body was starting to get used to movement again, and his reactions were getting faster and sharper. It was clear that his session was far from over but the fears of him losing the notion of time keep creeping on his conscious each day more and more until he couldn't take it anymore, and finally confronted the founders for answers. Fearing the worst and thinking that, at the very least, a whole year has passed. To his horror and dismay, the three actually confirmed his suspicions only to them be replaced by confusion as Pudding Head said that the month would restart tomorrow, and Platinum explained what she meant by that.

"We have been repeating the same month for a year now?!" The ex-prince asks them in shock.

"Yeah, we kind of forgot to mention it," Platinum tells him with some embarrassment, "That spell I told you that Clover the Clever taught me? It is a time loop spell. Each time the month ends, we regress to the start of it with all our knowledge and skill intact; that is why we don't perceive it happening." Platinum explains. "It also makes anyone that tries to enter the castle spiral in an endless loop of finding and entering the place without knowing that they are caught in a trap. Don't worry, this castle is in the middle of nowhere, so no one will ever come here."

"But…that also means that I have been getting older." He looks at his bound hoofs. "Am I a year older now?"

"Oh, Blues, you poor naive prince." Discord chuckled and tapped his head a couple of times. "Hello! Spirit of chaos and discord here? The creature that can break the laws of physics and order? Do you think something as easy as time can escape my grasp?" He tells with a raised eyebrow. "Messing around with the clock is one of my favorite hobbies!" He tells in delight before addressing the prince. "So don't worry about getting older, I'm telling you right now…you are not. In fact, you are actually completing a small time loop of my own creation." He tells remembering something.

"What do you mean?" Blueblood asks him, confused.

"Dear Blue, you never stopped to wonder why your predecessor, despite being a couch potato who only cared for spa treatments and being pampered all the time, was always in top physical condition? Hmmm?"

"So you're telling me that all of my training and physical improvement…are sent into the past?"

"…and ensuring your age does not move forward in the process yes." He says in pride. "One delightful yet small chaotic prank on the stream of time! Oh, I'm particularly fond of this one too, rather subtle for my taste, yeah, but making all those nobles lose their minds trying to figure out how the prince stays in shape despite never lifting a hoof, made it more than worth it."

"We didn't tell you right away because we didn't want you to think that you have ALL the time in the world to get in shape," Hurricane commented. "And don't you ever think that just because time isn't moving, you can slack off in your training. The moment I see you getting lazy, we will make things even harder for you rookie!" Hurricane warned him.

"I will keep that in mind" Blueblood replies.

"Good, now move it! You got your answer, so back to cleaning!" Hurricane pointed at the front door, and not wanting to test his luck, the ex-prince complied and left to start his session once more.

"He is getting better with walking on three hooves" Hurricane commented.

"Yep, but he still hasn't figured out how to keep those shackles apart for a whole day." Platinum adds with a tired sigh.

"He is getting there, little by little but he is getting there though!" Pudding mentioned with a smile.

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