• Published 9th Aug 2012
  • 6,196 Views, 184 Comments

The Discordian's Daughter - Pumpkin Patch

A long-lost pony returns, but why was she lost?

  • ...

Part 1, Chapter 6

“Alright, smarty mare. I’m headin’ out!” Willow announced to her host.

Twilight turned to Spike. “Are you all set?”

The question was almost rhetorical. Spike was standing by the door with the bag of syringes slung over his shoulder and looking like he was going to a fancy dinner. He had spent the last hour scrubbing his scales, rinsing his mouth, and meticulously straightening his spines. Twilight could also smell a heavy amount of cologne.

“I am fully prepared, ma’am,” said Spike in a voice that was deeper and smoother than his real one.

Twilight smirked, “Well, then I guess Willow is free to go.” She turned back to look at the pony she just referred to. “You may need to keep an eye on him while he keeps an eye on you.”

Willow chuckled. “Well, I’ll try, but you know sometimes my hair gets in my eyes.”

Twilight giggled at first, but then her face straightened. “If you start to feel strange at all, let Spike know. And if it gets too bad, get out of there as fast as you can.”

“I dig, mare,” said Willow, nodding. She then went to the front door, opened it, and exited the library. Spike followed, sticking closer to her than a royal guard to Princess Celestia.

Twilight stood at the door watching them until they were out of sight, then took a deep breath to calm her nerves and closed the door.

There had been no incidents with Willow since the initial one on the night before. She, Spike, and Twilight all slept surprisingly soundly that night and Willow remained herself throughout the course of the day. Still, that fact alone did little to ease Twilight’s fears.

She had spent most of the day examining her new houseguest. She studied every aspect of Willow’s body that she knew how to, looking for anything unusual that could give her further understanding of the long-haired pony’s condition. However, everything was normal and the only results were several moments of uncomfortable physical contact. Willow was, at least, a good patient though. She welcomed Twilight’s tests and the two even exchanged jokes during the more awkward procedures.

Twilight had also tried combing the formulae in Professor Voidsdale’s journal for answers, but she soon learned that it was a waste of time. Discordian alchemy was very different than traditional alchemy. Traditional alchemy was based on order and harmony, but this alchemy was completely based on chaos. Twilight couldn’t understand any of it. The symbols used in the equations were completely foreign to her, the units of measure didn’t resemble any that she knew, and the ingredients made absolutely no sense. It was like trying to read something written in a different language.

The only thing in the journal that she could understand were the sections that the professor used as a personal diary. Most of the book was filled with dizzying Discordian equations, but every now and then the professor would simply write about his day or gloat to himself about how amazing his plan was.

Unable to think of anything else, Twilight walked back to the journal and flipped through it until she found the next passage she could comprehend...

I’m so close now that I can almost see our glorious victory over the alicorns unfold! It’s been months of trial and error, but I finally have discovered an exact formula! It’s truly my best work, far better than any of the works the public knows of, and that’s no small order.

I call it Ataxium. It’s amazing. With the proper dosage it could double any pony’s strength and at the same time make its body completely impervious to magic. If I could create enough of it, a small band of Discordians would be more than enough to overthrow the two sisters and their army. The princesses’ magic would be futile against us and any soldier that stood in our way would be crushed!

Ataxium may add another benefit as well. You see, in order to make a pony resistant to magic, I had to make a formula that was very magic-like in nature. So in addition to protecting a pony from magic, it may also grant them some “magic” power of its own. Exactly how that power would manifest is anypony’s guess. In fact, it may be different for each pony that the Ataxium is given to. It will be very interesting to see.

So does this formula actually work? Of course it does! I made it, didn’t I?

Well, even so I suppose it is untested and if I tried it on myself and something went wrong, it may leave me incapacitated. This formula changes a pony at the core level of its being after all so using it is a little risky. I will need to find a test subject...

“Oh! Good evening Willow!” said Rarity greeting her guest at the front door.

“Hey there, fancy mare!” Willow replied.

“You came just in time!” Rarity said. “I just finished setting up for our little makeover this evening.”

Rarity pointed her hoof at one of the many salons in the main room. In addition to hair spray and a curling iron, there was blush, mascara, eye shadow, and powder. Also on either side of the solon were hat racks fully stocked with various head and neck wear.

“Uh, I thought you were just going to give me a new do,” said Willow.

Rarity laughed. “Oh dear, it’s quite obvious that you don’t know me.”

I know you,” said Spike looking up longingly at her.

Rarity started slightly. “Oh, why, hello Spike. I didn’t see you there. What brings you here?”

“He wants a makeover too,” said Willow.

“I do not!” Spike objected. “I’m here to watch Willow because she, uh, has fleas.”

“Hey! I don’t have fleas!” Willow rebutted.

Spike squinted his eyes. “And I don’t want a makeover.”

Willow slowly nodded. “Touché, little guy.”

Rarity sighed. “Oh well, you’re always welcome here, just try not to get in the way, okay?”

“I would never get in the way of your work, madam,” said Spike, sounding like he was her butler.

Rarity and Willow made their way over to the salon with Rarity wearing a face of confidence and pride as though she were about to perform her greatest work yet. Willow, however, looked like she was being escorted to the gallows.

“So...what did you have in mind, fancy mare?” Willow asked nervously.

“Oh I had a few different ideas,” Rarity replied as she lifted a pair of scissors with her horn’s magic, “but all of them start the same. We really need to trim down that mane of yours.”

Willow swallowed. “Well, I said I would let you.” She timidly lifted up one side of her hair with hoof and offered it to Rarity.

Rarity’s magic grabbed hold of the hair while simultaneously opening the scissors and moving them into position near the bottom. The ends of Willow’s hair were frayed and dirty from being dragged on the ground and occasionally getting stepped on. Needless to say, Ponyville’s fashion queen was eager to remove them. Once the scissors were at the right spot, Rarity closed the blades.

Unexpectedly, this resulted in a loud cracking sound. Rarity looked down at the scissors and saw large cuts going in every direction on the blades. Then, before her eyes, the blades shattered into little shards of metal and fell to the ground.

Rarity looked up at Willow to see that she was just as startled as her. They stared at each other in stunned silence for a moment, then finally Willow asked, “Uh, how old were those scissors, mare?”

“Not old at all!” said Rarity, as if insulted by the question. “What did you put in your hair?”

“I didn’t think I put anything in it. Like I told ya’, my mane’s all-natural,” answered Willow plainly.

Rarity reached out and felt around Willow’s hair. She stopped after finding that it felt perfectly normal. “Hmmm,” she said, looking at the broken-off handles that once supported scissor blades, “maybe these poor scissors just couldn’t take anymore work. Pity. They were my favorite pair.”

“I’m sorry, mare,” apologized Willow.

“Oh quite alright. I doubt you had anything to do with it,” said Rarity. “Stay here. I’ll go upstairs and see if I can find another pair.”

Spike had been watching the situation very intently. Most of the time his gaze was fixed solely on Rarity, but the moment that the scissors broke his eyes snapped instantly onto Willow while he gripped the bag of needles tightly in his hand. As soon as Rarity turned and began walking towards the staircase, he approached the pony he was asked to guard.

“What happened?” asked Spike.

“I-I don’t know,” answered Willow. She grabbed a part of her hair and felt around it. “My hair feels fine. It’s just gotta be old scissors.”

“Hmmm, I’ve never seen scissors act like that, even when they're old,” said Spike. “Let me try something.”

Spike grabbed the clump of hair that Willow was holding, opened his mouth, and bit down on it with his razor-sharp teeth.

“Ow!” he said almost immediately as he dropped the hair and clasped his mouth. He stood there covering his jaws for a moment, then his eyes turned to the floor where he saw a small white pebble-like object.

“It broke my tooth!” he exclaimed.

“Whoah. So, like, my hair’s as hard as a rock?” asked Willow.

“I’m a dragon. I eat gems. And I can tell you that’s a lot harder than a rock!” said Spike.

“Heavy," is all Willow said.

“Yeah. Well, I guess you’re off the hook then,” said Spike, laughing a little. “Rarity doesn’t have anything that’s going to cut that hair!”

When Willow didn’t respond to this comment, Spike looked up at her face. Her eyes had changed. They were now the glowing, blank eyes he had come to fear.

“Holy cow!” Spike yelled as he jumped back. Panic set in and he started to shake, but then he noticed something. Willow — or whatever was stealing her body from her — was standing completely still and staring at absolutely nothing. Quickly, he reached into the bag, pulled out a needle and thrusted it into Willow’s leg. Her eyes closed and she gently collapsed onto the floor.

Spike breathed a sigh of relief, but then there was a sound that heralded an altogether different problem. Rarity was descending the staircase. He put the needle he was holding back in the bag.

“Finally! I found some scissors that are up to the task!” Rarity said loudly as she neared the final step with the new pair magically suspended above her head. When she turned to enter the main room though, she dropped them to the floor and gasped.

“Spike! What happened!” she screamed.

“Uh...”, Spike stalled, “She-she was so nervous about getting a full makeover that she just fainted!”

“Oh dear!” exclaimed Rarity. “I saw that she was nervous but I never dreamed it was this nervous!”

Frantically, Rarity walked over to Willow’s motionless body and turned it over. She put her ear over the unconscious pony’s chest. She heard Willow's heartbeat and felt the heaving of her breaths. With her right hoof, she began lightly slapping Willow’s face. “Wake up, Willow! I will not have one of my clients taken out in an ambulance again!”

Spike raised an eyebrow. “Again?”

After a few slaps, Willow let out a long groan and slowly opened her eyes. After they focused and she could see Rarity looking down on her with worrisome, almost teary eyes she finally spoke. “Did...you not find any more scissors?”

Rarity let out a long exhale, then smiled. “I did find some, but don’t worry. I won’t use them on you, I promise.”

“Heh. Okay. Guess that’s a relief,” said Willow as she got up from under her host and stood on her own hooves.

“Why didn’t you tell me you were tonsurephobic?” asked Rarity rhetorically.

“Tonsur-a-whatta?” said Willow.

“You’re afraid of getting your hair cut! I am so sorry. If I had known I would have never pressured you!”

“Well, I was a little nervous but I don’t think—” Willow stopped her speech when she felt Spike nudging her. She quickly glanced at him and he gave her a wink. She shifted her eyes back to Rarity. “I mean, uh, I never had my mane cut before, so, uh, I guess I didn’t know, uh, ya know?”

“Well, it’s perfectly alright,” said Rarity reassuringly, “We each have our own little fears.”

“Yeah, uh, ain’t that the truth?” said Willow, a little surprised that Rarity bought her acting.

Rarity smiled. “Well, perhaps I have given you enough nightmares for one evening. I think maybe you should go home and recover. We can do a makeover some other time, sans scissors of course.”

“Yeah. Yeah I think I better split. My head’s still kinda trippin’,” said Willow as she held her hoof up to her forehead.

Rarity put her hoof on Willow’s shoulder and gently lead her and Spike to the front door. They said their goodbyes to each other — with Spike’s goodbye being curiously formal — and Rarity’s two visitors left in the direction of the Golden Oaks Library.

Once they were out of earshot of Rarity, Willow talked to Spike. “So, what really happened back there, little dude?”

“Your eyes went blank. I put another needle in you and you passed out again,” Spike explained.

“I didn’t hurt you er nuthin’, did I?” asked Willow.

“No and that’s the thing. You just stood there, like you were in some kind of trance,” said Spike.

“Heavy,” said Willow. “That must’ve been when I saw that green haze again.”

“Could be. It was weird, but you know it’s actually a good thing,” suggested Spike. “That means that I got plenty of time use the syringe before that whatever-it-is takes you over.”

“Hmm, good point, little guy!” said Willow as her small smile reappeared.

“Thanks!” said Spike. “I think that means your welcoming party tomorrow night is a go! All we have to do is keep watching your eyes.”