• Published 2nd Jan 2019
  • 3,841 Views, 85 Comments

Security Issues - Andromidus

Brandt is a human. Brandt is also the newest royal security adviser. He has his work cut out for him.

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4 - Analysis & Conclusion

He had everything. The motive, the question, and the proof.

Now it was time to let the dominoes fall.

Brandt had an emergency meeting request sent out to all the other princesses about an hour ago, which meant they would be arriving soon enough in Canterlot Castle’s war room. He, however, had stopped by Princess Celestia’s office to personally talk with her.

The man fixed his tie and stepped in, walking past a confused Raven.

“Mister Brandt, it’s quite nice to see you again, but I would like to ask,” Princess Celestia greeted, “why you decided to call an emergency meeting involving the royalty of Equestria and its subsidiaries?” She smiled. “I’m sure it’s quite important, but I would just like to know your reasoning.”

“It’s quite simple, Your Highness,” he replied. He gently laid his hands onto the table and looked her in the eye. “Your guards are idiots.”


“Complete morons! And that’s the nice way of putting it!” he half-shouted. “I’m sure the civilians have their excuses, but the guards should be no exception!” He cleared his throat. “And so I’ve already deduced from my week-long stay here why Equestria is in dire straits regarding security. And how much harder my job is going to be,” he added.

The alicorn made a blank face, she had truly thought this was an emergency—but it was just a pony crying timberwolf. No longer all that worried, the princess only raised a brow as she sipped from her tea. “I’m quite sure that’s an exaggeration, Mister Brandt.”

He could feel the anger building from her nonchalant response. “It’s… it’s not! I walked into your castle without showing any credentials whatsoever!” he shot back. Then he walked to the window and pointed to the front gate being overlooked. “And that! Why is there no one standing guard there?” He hissed and waved his hand dismissively. “Ack, nevermind. How about I show you what I mean?”

“Very well,” she said. “Show me then, Royal Security Advisor Brandt.”

Brandt smiled. Hook, line, sinker. “Alright. Why don’t we make our way to the war room then?”

“We must be heading there anyway, so I don’t see any wrong in that. Let’s be off then, RSA Brandt.”

“Ladies first,” he replied, pulling the exit open and gesturing for her to make her move.

The princess smiled and thanked him, leaving her office. She made a small “o” with her mouth and walked next to Raven. She leaned over. “Raven, would you please hold the schedule until the situation is resolved?”

The mare nodded. “This’ll wreak havoc on that…” she murmured. “But you’re the princess.”

With no real sense of urgency, the duo made their way out and to the royal throne room.

Princess Celestia stopped as Brandt pulled a beaten, half torn rubber horse mask from his pocket. "What is that?" she asked, rotating her head to get the full picture.

"A disguise. An admittedly terrible one," Brandt said, chuckling as he pulled the deformed mask over his head. "During the week, I ran an experiment… testing the waters, so to say. It turned out to be a monumental success! But…! But! You see, a good scientist never leaves themselves with such a small data pool. So I asked myself, how far could I go with all of this?”

“And so…” the princess motioned for him to continue. The man grinned from underneath his mask.

“And so, I came to this conclusion,” he spread his arms and posed for the whole world to see. “Still human from the neck down, the mask doesn't blink, and the face only has one expression. But just watch."

The solar alicorn huffed, secretly disguising amusement beneath her expression. “This will never work. My guards are trained far too well to fall for something so… inane.”

He rolled his eyes. Brandt then walked, still on two legs, to the door of the royal throne room, and cleared his throat. “It is I, your princess, Luna! Wonder over yonder! I have arrived on call regarding an emergency!” He pranced around, speaking in a janky mix of modern and old Equuish. "I needeth be let into the throne room, right away!"

The guard saluted, tense. “Understood, Your Highness! We’ll be ready at any moment should you need us!”

“Why thank you, Sir Knight!” Brandt placed a hand on the flimsy snout, practically smashing his hand against and causing it to wobble back and forth. He made a smacking noise with his lips and sent a flying kiss. “A good knight should always be rewarded for thine deeds!”

The stallion blushed, bashfully looked away, and pawed the ground. “I’m… I’m j-just doing my job, Ma’am!”

The doors were opened and so was Celestia’s mouth.

Brandt turned around to face the shocked pony, an aura of smugness radiating off of him.

“There’s your proof, Your Highnesses.” Brandt tapped for the video recording to end. “Genuine, one-hundred-percent unscripted, proof.”

He had shown them each experiment he had run, posing as several different ponies with a varying spectrum of disguises, each one of them meeting the test success criteria with relative ease. They started with the first one he had conducted in the archives and ended with the most recent throne room guard.

“But that cannot be…”

“If you still don't believe me,” he started, heaving a stack of books onto the table, “I went ahead and managed to get these from the Forbidden section of your archives.”

The three alicorns all paused for a moment to consider everything the human had shown them. Events that could’ve been prevented if the solar regiment of guards weren’t as clueless as what had been shown to them. All this time, they had been fooled into thinking they were the best of the best.

“HA!” Princess Luna suddenly cried out, slamming one hoof on the table and pointing another at her sister. “Your guards are stupid and by extension highlight your inadequacies as a ruling figure! Therefore, I am far superior compared to you as my guards do not suffer from the same problems! HA!”

Princess Celestia’s face morphed into one would see whenever someone was, quote, “fed up with someone’s shit.” The solar diarch sighed. “I suppose you’re correct, sister.”

“HAHAHAHA!” she cackled, tears forming in her eyes. She looked joyfully at the confused human. “Mister Brandt, you are hereby decreed as my new favorite creature! Come, we must celebrate ‘Tia’s stupidity with barrels of spirit!”

She squeezed Brandt with a bear hug to convey her obvious joy.

“Well, Princess Luna,” he wheezed. “Your guards aren’t without fault, either.”

The younger sister recoiled. “What!? What do you mean!?”

He wriggled out of her grip and gasped for air once he was free. Alicorns sure were incredibly strong. He propped himself against the table, raising a single finger to ask for a moment. After catching his breath, he straightened up as best he could. “Well, aside from your solar division, I also tried something with Luna’s lunar counterpart.”

He hobbled to the laptop and tapped on a video file labeled, “VID_679.mov”

Luna looked horrified.

Truth be told, Equestria’s night sky was breathtaking.

Their lack of industrialism had basically prevented light pollution in major cities, coupled with their environmentally-friendly magical substitutes, left everything open for observation.

His hometown had nothing on this.

Brandt sighed and shook his head. He wasn’t here to gawk at some pretty lights in the sky. No, he was on a mission. Mostly to test if something would really work.

Granted, he was getting his information based off of human folklore, and his assumptions could probably be categorized as racist.

Interestingly, he learned that Luna took her guard training far more seriously than her sister did. Thankfully, that translated into them also being far more competent guardsmen than their daytime counterparts. They even managed to point out his poorly constructed disguise and attempted to detain him before he showed them his credentials and reasons. He felt proud that they could do so!

And then he didn’t, because that was how a normal guard was supposed to act.

The only downside it seemed was that Luna’s guards were nocturnals, rendering them practically useless for half of the waking day. They also looked like bats! Pointier ears, fangs, and leathery wings. Except you would never actually call them bat-ponies. Or vampires. That was the same thing as using a derogatory slur, apparently.

Instead, they preferred “Nocturnes,” or “Thestrals.”

This was the main reason why he was out here and not in the castle itself. To see if the Thestrals had any exploitable flaws.

So it came clear to him that the feeling on his back was most likely shame and guilt for even wanting to try this out.

He reminded himself this was for the good of Equestria.

He snorted to himself. “This wouldn't be happening if they just worked them a little harder and trained them a bit better.”

Brandt shook his head and looked into his bag. It was always good to check that everything he intended to put was actually inside before he decided to start anything. He tapped a finger against the fairly strong LED, a clove of garlic, and a vial of blood. He zipped up the bag. All check. All good to go.

He jogged out of the balcony and towards the direction of the lunar barracks.

This experiment was simpler than the rest. Collect three separate groups of volunteers, all consenting and willing to follow through. Then, present them with the object and record their reactions. For this experiment, success was an amorphous outcome, considering if it even existed. This was more like data collection. If anything, the success of this experiment would tell him how easily lunar guards could be neutralized.

His fingers were crossed that this would end in failure.

He looked to the pony in the watchtower, who was responsible for checking who or what entered the barracks. Moving in without their go-ahead would elicit a warning shot, with repeated infractions escalating from there. The thestral brought up a pair of binoculars and stared at him for a couple of seconds. They were soon lowered and a salute was sent his way. Brandt returned the gesture and walked inside.

Most of the ponies were out of uniform and simply lounging about, talking or drinking in their mess hall. Or, well, it lacked a roof, so that word may not be the right fit. “Eh, whatever,” he said to no one in particular. Brandt walked to the highest spot in the area: a small stage-like platform. Raising his hand and his voice, he spoke. “If I could get everybody’s attention, please?”

They stopped conversing amongst themselves and all slowly turned to face him. Soon enough, the entire place was quiet. Luna trained them good. That was the fastest I’ve seen a room this large go silent.

“Alright. So I need a couple of volunteers to help me out with some simple tests,” he announced, pulling out the three objects. “A LED lamp –” he flicked it on “– so I can see—”

“LIGHT!” one of them cried out, a mare, it sounded like. “LIGHT!” she repeated, wings fluttering.

Once uninterested heads found their way towards him, or rather, the object he was holding. Their pupils shrank to pinpricks as they gazed into it, entranced by the hypnotic powers of the LED. Slowly, they got up and began surrounding the stage.

It began as a low rumble, quiet and near silent, however, it picked up as if it were a rolling snowball. The word they repeated shook the heavens with the volume it was spoken in. “LIGHT! LIGHT! LIGHT! LIGHT!” they chanted, bordering cultist levels of fanaticism.

One of the thestrals, donning a suit of armor with darker shades of black leaped up into the air. “BROTHERS AND SISTERS! WE MUST SECURE THE LIGHT!” That’s the lunar guard captain!

They roared in unified agreement, stomping their hooves and clambering over each other. “LIGHT! LIGHT! LIGHT! LIGHT!”

Holy fuck they’re like moths.

It was terrifying, really, to be surrounded by a sea of enthralled ponies. “Fuck it, here, take it! I’m not going to die because of a stupid LED!” Brandt tossed the thing into the air, where it was immediately snatched by a nearby pony.



“And that was how I rendered an entire lunar guard camp, useless.”

Princess Celestia had bowled over, dying. Her face was contorted in pain as she laughed so hard no sound came out.

Princess Luna screeched, pointing an accusatory hoof at the human. “That cannot be! THAT IS IMPOSSIBLE! Captain Dazzle would never let something like happen to himself! THIS IS FAKE.”

“I know him… he would never participate in something like this.” Princess Cadance coughed. “But, Captain Dazzle was the one who rallied your forces to secure the lamp, auntie. You saw him in the video.”

The dark alicorn knew this. She was simply in denial. Her niece’s words broke the dam.

“NOOOOOOOOOOO!” Princess Luna cried, slamming her hooves on the table like a toddler. “IT’S NOT FAAAAAAIR!”

While both mares were in differing states of emotions—both sobbing for different reasons, Brandt stood at the front, poker face never wavering. “I know it’s hilarious, but the state of your forces are no joke. Princesses, I implore you… and none of you are paying attention.”

“I am, Brandt,” Princess Cadance reassured. “It’s quite alarming that this is… how easily we can be defeated.”

“It is,” he replied. “I seriously ask myself day and night why your country hasn’t been taken over by someone else.”

The alicorn shrugged. “Well, when you have two immortal ponies who have the power to move celestial bodies –” she glanced at the two acting like foals “– not their most flattering moment… most tend to steer clear.”

“I see… but relying so heavily on two ponies to defend an entire country… is not healthy.”

“It isn’t,” the princess sighed. “And what makes this so much worse is that my husband was in charge of all of this before he left. It… worries me a bit. So… I’ve been thinking... after you’re done tearing down my aunties’ forces, would you mind coming to the Crystal Empire?”

“I read up about the Crystal Empire,” Brandt replied. “It falling can be catastrophic for the whole of Equestria. So, I’m obliged to do what I can for you, too.”