• Published 7th Jun 2019
  • 4,480 Views, 266 Comments

MLP: Rebirth of the Queen - The Bricklayer

Long ago, the Father of all Monsters gave birth to many creatures. Some monstrous, others wonderous. And now one has been located. Long live the Queen.

  • ...

1: Stormfront

“Mothra oh Mothra
If we were to call for help
Over time, over sea, like a wave
You'd come

“Our guardian angel
Mothra oh Mothra
If we were to call for help
Over time, over sea, like a wave

“You'd come
Our guardian angel
Mothra oh Mothra
If we were to call for help

“Over time, over sea, like a wave
You'd come
Our guardian angel
Mothra oh Mothra

“Of forgotten kindness and ruined spirits
We pray for the people's spirit as we sing
This song of love
Mothra oh Mothra

“If we were to call for help
Over time, over sea, like a wave
You'd come
Our guardian angel…” -Mothra’s Song, as translated by Ocellus in her book ‘Queen of the Kaiju’

Equestria was old, this much was certain. Thousands upon thousands of years old, and with far more secrets than anybody would have ever thought possible. Even to this date, it was still theorized that only 50% of the planet had been explored and its secrets uncovered. There were some who theorized that was simply being generous actually, given the various theories that had been postulated and thrown around over the decades. One popular, if not somewhat mocked theory was that of a hollow planet. That meaning, the entirety of the world was covered in massive caverns that connected one end of the planet to the other.

Locked away in these caverns were only Celestia knew what. Perhaps it was innate pony curiosity to wonder at what was hiding in the lower depths of the world. Did that mean anyone should go looking? Perhaps not, given sometimes what we seek isn’t always what we end up finding. And sometimes what we find isn’t always in our best interest. Perhaps some theorized ponies should have just stayed within our borders and not gone off looking for trouble. Trouble, after all, had a tendency to find someone when they went looking for it was that not the truth?

Now, thousands of years ago the world was ruled by the Father of All Monsters. Grogar, the Overgoat. Possibly the most dangerous creature ever to walk the face of the planet, this madman gave birth to -literally and metaphorically- some of the most frightening beasts in all of Equestria’s recorded history. Beasts so terrifying you’d go mad just by looking at them.

Yes, we’re talking about you Discord.

Now, nobody was entirely sure how it happened, but eventually, Grogar was defeated by a pony now known to historians as Gusty the Great. His bell, his object of power was hidden away from him for thousands of years after his defeat and Grogar’s fate became that of mystery. Was he defeated and killed? Or was he locked away in the darkest depths of the world never to see the light of day? Given Grogar’s known control over the realm of the dead, or Tambelon as it was called just about anything could be true. Nobody really bothered to pry into these legends really, given Grogar was that feared.

What was known was just how many creatures he was responsible for, and how many he was theorized to have created. Were all of them evil? Maybe. Maybe not. Maybe some just acted on instinct, like wild animals. Very few beings could have ever been said to have been actually evil. So with that in mind, it was possible to question if all monsters were bad and to bring up the idea of some maybe even being on the side of the angels as it were. It was a long shot, yes that much was true. But then again if creatures like Discord could be tamed -tamed, not controlled- then maybe some could be befriended.

And really, not all monsters came in the shape of giant beasts. Sometimes the truly scary characters could be found living in your own town. And I’m not talking about changelings.

So, the question was, if such heroic monsters existed where could they possibly be found…?

“Professor! Professor!” a mare’s voice called as its owner rushed through caverns deep beneath a mine before finally breaching as a flash of sunlight hit her square in the face. “Sir, they’ve found… something.”

A griffon, dark brown in fur color turned back to look at the mare as he looked up from his watch.

“So our search wasn’t in vain. There really is something here…” the griffon whispered before gesturing to some nearby ponies in golden armor. “Clear everybody out! I don’t want anyone asking questions they shouldn’t be!” he barked. One guard saluted, before gesturing to his men.

“So, Princess, seems you were right,” the griffon smiled. A nametag on his lab coat read a name. Serizawa. “I’d almost thank you for proving a few theories of mine, but…”

“Yeah, I’ll hold the thanks for later until after we confirm the site as safe,” Princess Twilight Sparkle muttered. “Let’s hope this place doesn’t have any nasty surprises in store for us, and all this was… well, let’s hope it was just an earthquake really…”

“Doubtful,” Serizawa muttered pointing to a huge gash in the ground with a claw. “See that over there? Took out forty miners with it when it opened up. And there was only an earthquake detected after the fact. No, what we found here… well, it was probably something more.”

“So, how’d this all start anyway?” a unicorn with a mulberry coat and a chipped apart horn asked, walking up in pinkish-silver armor with markings that designated her as the Captain. She bowed to Twilight, and then to the Professor. “I’d like some details, just so I know what to put in the papers and tell anypony curious or stupid enough to come inquiring about.”

“You let me and Monarch handle that,” Serizawa replied. “All respect where it’s due Madam Fizzlepop, this is out of-”

Fizzlepop looked frankly rather insulted, this griffon treating her like she was beneath notice. She took a few deep breaths, he probably hadn’t meant it that way. Not really anyways. The fact of the matter was, he probably just meant that this wasn’t something she should worry about. Let him and his Monarch group handle this. And even if she was wrong about that, Twilight was quick to leap to her defense giving Serizawa a stern glare.

“Her jurisdiction?” Twilight asked. Fizzlepop licked her lips and suppressed a shudder. She did enjoy it when her Princess got assertive. Didn’t matter if it was with her or not. “I brought her in on this because I knew I could trust her judgment. I wouldn’t have made her Captain of the Guard if I didn’t. Trust goes both ways Professor, you should know that. I trust you, so trust her.”

Serizawa considered it over for a moment before sighing. “Alright… The official story is that is was an earthquake, and we’re sticking to that. I’d rather not frighten ponies.”

“And it’s obviously very much not an earthquake as I gathered,” Fizzlepop deadpanned. “You boys from Monarch wouldn’t be here if that was the case. I assume you know what happened, how… well, all of this was uncovered?”

“Enlighten me,” Serizawa replied.

“They picked up a radiation pocket out here last month while strip-mining the place. Apparently, a few ponies got excited thinking they’d stumbled across uranium or something. They started stacking up the heavy machinery and then… well, you’ve seen the results.” Fizzlepop sighed gesturing to the huge gash in the valley floor.”

“The arrogance of our kind is thinking nature is always in our control,” Serizawa muttered. Whether he was talking about the accident, or what had been uncovered was currently unclear. “Yes, that’s what happened. But what they found is hardly uranium. Follow me.”

As they did so, Fizzlepop let her mind begin to wander if only for the briefest of moments. Truth be told, she was grateful for Twilight actually bringing her into the fold. Yes, she was still used in a military capacity but honestly, Fizzlepop didn’t actually know what else she was useful for after serving so long under the Storm King as his right hand.

When (Princess) Twilight found her, she was a broken mare. Years of serving as a conqueror against ponykind had hardened her heart. Meaning bringing her back into civilization would be a tricky endeavor, to say the least. Little by little, she had managed to return to what could be called a normal state of mind but at the same time, Fizzlepop knew she would probably never be too comfy working as a civilian.

Twilight knew this as well. There was a reason she had brought her as captain of her personal guard. She knew aside from the fact that Fizzlepop being a great tactician, the mare knew nothing else aside from being a military mare.

Perhaps it would be possible at some later point to ease her into a non-military job but right now that would hardly be possible. Fizzlepop knew she simply wasn’t comfortable around ponies right now, so it would be best to regain her trust in ponykind by working with ponies in a similar job capacity as her own. Plus, this allowed her to put her already learned skills to the best of use. Not to invade or destroy, but to defend and to help others who couldn’t help themselves. Put simply, for the sake of those who couldn’t fight to defend Equestria and its allies she would fight for them. She had a lot of sins to atone for, and this was simply one way to wipe her slate clean.

Fizzlepop snapped herself back to the present and away from her musings as she listened into the professor and his explanations. She felt the distinct warmth of a spell wrap around her like a blanket and stood at attention. A protection spell, one used against harmful elements in the atmosphere.

“...When they first discovered this pocket, the radiation levels were only half as strong as they are now. Now, griffons have been digging holes in the ground searching for gold and the like for as long as ponies have been preaching friendship, if not longer. So I know my way around a cavern. So I know that is not natural…” Serizawa stated as the group filed down back into the tunnels below and into a large central chamber with a truly massive hive hanging right above them.

“What in Celestia’s name…?” Fizzlepop whispered eyes widened. She gestured to two guards. “Go on, have a look. And if the radiation starts spiking too high, shout and we get the Hell out of here got it?”

“How long do you think we have?” Twilight asked.

“Not as long as I’d like to study that,” Serizawa sighed sadly. “We didn’t expect radiation this strong, so we didn’t come properly prepared.”

“What is it? Some kind of hive…?” Tempest asked.

“Yes, I’d say so,” Twilight agreed. “It’s odd, it seems to be intact. Dead, but intact. I’d like to come back for another look.” she sighed wistfully.

“When you say dead, you mean something once lived in there?” Fizzlepop asked swallowing nervously. “Because it looks like something came out of… there.” she trailed off upon hearing shouting and galloped down to the guards and her eyes widened as she saw another tunnel, massive in size and hardly natural at all leading away from them…

“So Professor,” Twilight asked. “What do you make of this?”

“I’d say we have a very big problem on our hands,” Serizawa muttered. “Call it in. I want that thing found!” he barked. “Make sure this doesn’t get to the press, understand? I’d rather not be responsible for mass panic.”

“What does this mean?” Fizzlepop asked.

“It means the illusion of no more monsters may be about to be blown wide open…” Serizawa replied. “As I said, the arrogance of our kind is thinking nature is always in our control, and not the other way around…”

“So, if something’s coming… How do we fight it?” Twilight asked and Fizzlepop smiled at this.

“Simple, you get help,” she replied and both Twilight and Serizawa stared at her...

At the command post set up outside the mine, Fizzlepop had to severely resist rolling her eyes as Serizawa continued looking at her with no small amount of shock.

“How… how do you know help is coming?” he whispered.

“Well, I didn’t say help was coming exactly per se,” Fizzlepop clarified. “I said we go get help. Where, I’m not sure, but…” she trailed off knowing Serizawa suspected something.

“I’d have to agree with Fizzlepop,” Twilight nodded. “If whatever burrowed that hole is heading up to the surface, it’s growing. And growing fast. You’d have to be blind to not notice the tunnel was getting bigger. And that hive was certainly too small to house something to burrow the tunnel as it was by the end,” she continued. “Serizawa, you said to me once Monarch was founded to hide the existence of these giants as much as possible. How long do you think it’ll be before the cat’s out of the bag?”

“It all depends,” Serizawa started, his paw going to his pocket where his watch rested. “Since Gojira’s attack a few years ago, he has remained docile. And at the moment, we can track him, but not contain him. If he makes a serious move, then we’d be unable to stop it. And if a titan wakes up before we can find them, then it might be a similar story.”

“Wait, wait… Gojira?” Twilight asked combing her memory for the name. “...Yeah, forgive me but he might have been before my time,” she said remembering Serizawa was ten to twenty years her elder.

“Hmm, seems History classes are slipping, or Monarch is suppressing that as well,” Serizawa noted with a nod. “No matter, it’s irrelevant at the moment. My point stands, it might just be a matter of one slip up and time before the world is fully aware of the scope of these beings.”

“Like say… that giant bug crawling up to the surface world?” Fizzlepop asked in a deadpan tone.

“If Monarch finds it, we might be able to contain it. But yes, if we cannot locate this being in time, it will undo all of Monarch’s efforts.”

“Mass panic, I’m guessing,” Fizzlepop replied. “Like pony sacrifice, dogs and cats living together… All of Equestrian civilization coming undone. That sort of thing?” she deadpanned.

“It might, but there’s a chance that something new can take its place,” he offered, looking up. “A civilization built on respecting these creatures and coexistence.”

“Yeah, ponies do have a tendency to do that…” Fizzlepop remarked and Twilight smiled at that, glad her Captain of the Guard was coming around. Her smile was soon to fade. “Or scream and run in terror. Nervous animals you know.”

Twilight rubbed her temples and groaned. “Let me guess, you’re counting on this ‘Gojira’ to just show up out of the blue and save us all?” she asked. “No offence Professor, but I’m more proactive. I don’t rely on what-ifs and maybes.”

“Quite a fair assessment really,” Serizawa agreed. “I myself am not a fan of waiting on that monster to just show up and save us if he even cares really.”

“Woah woah,” Fizzlepop stated. “Back the Hell up. Can we all just get on the same page here? Titans, Gojira, can someone please read me in here?”

“Titans are what you would call giant monsters,” Serizawa explained, gesturing with his hands. “Gojira is what we designated one of these beings during an attack some time ago. Monarch was formed after this attack. Gojira himself is an apex predator and a bipedal reptile who might have an ancestry tree dating back to the days of Grogar himself.”

“Sounds like something out of a bad Neighponiese B-Movie if you ask me…” Fizzlepop remarked. “Then again, Tirek exists and he’s probably the definition of a titan.”

“Wait wait, now I remember…” Twilight said smacking a wing to her face as she did so. “50 years ago, give or take a decade… There were these tests of a powerful magical explosive off the coasts of Equestria. The project was scrapped thanks to the range and possible horrific uses by enemy nations. Yours included Professor,” she said to the griffon before stammering out: “No… no offense intended of course.”

“Well, you do read your history,” Serizawa said with an approving nod. “And none taken. All have histories we’re not proud of. But here’s the thing. They weren’t testing magical weapons. They were trying to kill him.” he said going to a nearby film projector and playing a reel. Massive spines were shown scything through the waters of an island chain before all became silent after a massive roar. Something encompassing all of nature’s rage and fury in a single tempest.

“By Celestia…” Fizzlepop whispered.

“Yes, none forget the first time they see and hear Gojira,” Serizawa stated, his eyes trying to bore holes through the screen. “This being is why Monarch exists. Both Celestia and the griffon king at the time decided his existence must be kept a secret, in fear of the very mass panic you predicted. He is the true dominant species of this planet. Not ponies, not griffons, he is the King.”

“King of the monsters, maybe…” Fizzlepop mused. “You almost sound like you admire the beast.”

“I admire all creatures, Miss Fizzlepop, he is no different,” he said firmly, turning his serious look to the mare.

“By all rights, I should have you arrested for admiring a threat to Equestria’s security,” Fizzlepop sighed. “Magnificent he may be, he’s still a monster. A monster that hasn’t been seen in fifty years, but still a monster. The last thing we want is someone supporting his actions. But in any case, that’s neither here nor there. Like it or not, we need someone to keep this bug’s existence under wraps.”

“So where does that leave us?” Twilight asked. “Do we just hope this bug or whatever it is decides not to take a snack on anything pony-related. I’m sorry, but I cannot ignore a threat to my subjects.”

She looked at Fizzlepop sternly. “If there’s anything you know, -and believe me I can tell you’re holding something back- I’d like to know about it up front.”

“Alright, I think I know of something that might be able to help us. It was a few years ago, back when I was under the employ of the Storm King…”

Something unusual had happened. Lightning flashed in the sky, and storm clouds rolled. Now, normally Tempest would have chalked this up to the natural abilities of the cloudships and the spell crystals inside them. But this storm? No, it was something more. Almost natural. Almost.

As the rain slammed down on the deck, Tempest groaned to herself. This voyage had started off so well. Just a quick trip to the Guoxia Province to pick up some supplies. Seems the weather didn’t actually agree with that.

“Alright,” Tempest snarled to the yeti troopers manning the ship. “Which of you morons decided to take us into a hurricane huh?”

“Alright, what’s going on…?” Grubber asked as he stepped onto the deck with a piece of sponge cake in his hands. Said sponge cake was quickly blown off ship by the howling winds. “Hey, that was-”

“Whine about it later Grubber,” Tempest muttered. “Right now I’ve got bigger fish to… Wait, bad phrase around you. Okay, can someone around here tell me what the hell is going on?”

“The storms appeared suddenly and without warning, Commander,” the yeti at the helm relayed. “Before we could adjust course, we were already in the thick of it.”

“Did anyone not pay attention to any maps?” Tempest bellowed back even as the torrent began to pick up. “Seriously, where are we? Are we even over the right continent?”

“All the maps and charts say we are but-”

“But you idiots couldn’t read a map even if it was in paper and crayon!” Tempest barked back.

“We seem to get you where you need to go well enough,” one of the yetis grumbled. “..Hold it, what’s that?” he asked as a high pitched screech filled the air, echoing over the roar of the thunder.

“Grab onto something!” The yeti at the helm barked. “We’re adjusting speed and altering course to avoid collision with whatever the Tartarus that is!”

Something massive flew by, darker than the clouds themselves. Buzzing like a giant wasp, with massive sickles sticking out in the gloom. Eyes flashed a blood red in the clouds before their owner vanished. Within the darkness, purple energy flew wildly, one arc narrowly avoiding the cloudship by just a hair’s breadth.

“Wow Tempest, he’s almost as bad at hitting things as you are!” Grubber joked before a zap from the mare’s horn sent him tumbling backwards into a lower deck. “...Okay, you’re still a good shot! And I’m okay, thanks for asking!” he shouted. Tempest, of course, ignored him.

“Okay, where are you…?” she muttered to herself trying to track the beast’s movements. “All hands to your stations. Get the cannons online!” she barked over the storm and the beast’s screeching.

Yetis rushed to massive cannons sticking up out of the deck, before with a loud whirring sound and a hum they glowed a sickly green shade. Tempest meanwhile, took the helm as a yeti was knocked overboard by a purple energy arc.

“Portside!” someone yelled. “Lock on, and fire!”

The cannons roared to life, firing into the whirling winds and darkness. There was a sound of impact, but whatever beast this was it didn’t react at all. Fact was, it only seemed to be getting more and more pissed with the craft.

“Lady Tempest,” one of the yetis called. “I strongly advise us to retreat! Like, at this instant or sooner even.”

“Hang that advisement!” Tempest shouted back. “If anyone even thinks about following his orders, I’ll hang you in fact!”

“Ma’am, our weapons are ineffective!” another yeti argued. “The only option we have left would be to ram the thing and that would be suicidal!”

Tempest was panting hard, sweating up a storm eyes darting right and left as she tried to keep track of the beast. She heard another shriek cut through the storm clouds, and she whirled around as she saw the flash of crimson eyes. Firing off a blast of pure electricity from her horn, she watched as it connected with a lightning flash from the clouds and together the jagged forks hit the massive creature. Finally, she got a good look at it. Moth-like in structure, with praying mantis scythe blades for legs with virulent orange wings. “Fire now! While it’s weakened!” she roared. Narrowing her eyes, she whispered: “From Tartarus’ heart, I stab at thee!”

None of the yetis wanted to argue that the beast looked fine, more annoyed than weakened really. Instead, they followed her orders and began to push the cannons well past the safe limits and trained all of them on the monstrosity.

“It’s coming at us from the bow now!” one yeti shouted. Normally, Tempest would question why this creature was going out of its way to attack them but she was too caught up in her angered frenzy to care. This… this thing dared to attack the Storm King?

“Feel my power…” Tempest snarled as the cloudship turned to face the enemy with a mighty groan.

With a roar that shook the entire ship, the cannons fired. With sounds like thunder, globs of pure plasma were launched at the beast. In response, twin beams erupted from the moth monster’s eyes, easily canceling out all of the shots from the cannons.

The wings glowed like fire before they scythed through the top of the cloudship. Screeching out in victory, the monster turned and headed back into the storms.

“Ma’am, we’re-”

“Yeah, I can see that!” Tempest shouted as she struggled to keep the ship aloft. It was now tilted downwards, plunging through the clouds towards the churning waters below. Tempest braced for the impact and her whole world went white.

Back in the present day, Fizzlepop was staring at a wall, the screams echoing in her head. “That thing… tore the ship apart. To this day I still don’t know what it was.”

“And… and you think it’s going to actually be our savior?” Twilight asked. “No offense Fizzlepop but… ARE YOU NUTS!?!” she bellowed making the room shake from the force of her voice. Serizawa rubbed his ears, seems the stories about the Royal Canterlot Voice were in fact true.

“Maybe, maybe not. To be fair, I think we did encroach on its territory. And I… No, I know it’s intelligent. I think it could detect the evil pony I was back then. Maybe it knows I’ve… changed. Or if it doesn’t, I just have to show it,” Fizzlepop stated.

“Well, it doesn’t sound entirely crazy now that I think of it…” Twilight muttered. “The Guoxia Province… There are legends there going back centuries. In fact, I recall some of them. “From erased Nazca lines to the hidden Temple of the Moth, the name ‘Mothra’ is woven throughout the most secret mythologies of our planet. The folklore and fairy tales tell of a winged creature of blinding light, an angel of the clouds whose god-like luminescence has the power to shatter the sky.” Twilight recited before remembering something she’d read in Monarch’s files. “Ancient spirit tablets discovered in the mountain jungles of the Guoxia Province portray a giant winged Alpha of the Lepidoptera order. In all of our findings, pony civilization is pictographically shown in poses that imply deification of the so-called ‘Queen of the Monsters’, suggesting that the creature was once a benign part of the natural order.” Serizawa?” she asked. “Do you think this is a member of the titan race?”

“I believe so. As you can tell from your recitations, Monarch has long had an interest in this creature. Or creatures, maybe. It could be a family lineage.” he answered, stroking his lower beak with his forepaw. “Fizzlepop, are you sure you were in the Province at the time?”

“Positive,” she recited. “I still dream about that creature, whatever it was.”

“Well, my guess is you drifted a little too far off course,” Serizawa said and Tempest muttered something under her breath at this. Probably vindication. “You wandered right over a place we call Beginning Isle. It seems to be a veritable cradle of civilization, with creatures that defy imagination. I, in fact, theorize this is where the Titans began thousands of years ago.”

“You mean where Grogar first created his children?” Twilight asked. “Wonderful. Can someone please explain to me why this is such a good idea again? We don’t even know how to navigate past those storms Fizzlepop mentioned. And Celestia only knows what awaits us on that isle.”

“...I think I can solve at least one of your issues. I know a mare actually…” Serizawa grinned. “She’ll be the perfect guide. All you need is a ship.”

“...Well, I think with Twilight’s royal power that can easily be acquired,” Fizzlepop smirked as Twilight let out an indignant squawk. She was not someone to be ‘volunteered’! “You just worry about finding and containing that thing. We’ll find Mothra, in case the worst comes to worst.”

“Worst being Monarch’s masquerade being blown wide open?” Twilight asked as she hung her wings in resignation knowing when Fizzlepop got started on an idea there was no talking her out of it. “...Well, I suppose if we do need to fight it, best to fight fire with fire… So, who’s this mare?”

“You might know her, actually. Daring Do,” Serizawa replied. “She’s long been a Monarch consultant when she’s not… you know, adventuring. Knows the jungles of the Province like the back of her hoof. Seen everything they have to offer. Now, Beginning Isle’s basic lifeforms shouldn’t be that different. Maybe a few divergent species here and there, but she’s your best bet to surviving the wilds.”

“...Yeah, I’ll admit that. I really didn’t take wilderness survival training really…” Twilight sighed rubbing the back of her head with a wing sheepishly. “...Suppose it might have helped me back when I was in the wastes…”

“Aww, that was like our first date!” Fizzlepop teased as Twilight blushed a bright red. “Not sure why you’d consider Klugetown romantic but… To each her own I guess…”

“...Is she always like this?” Serizawa asked and Twilight could only nod her head weakly.

“Trust me, you should see her when she really gets going,” Twilight whispered. “For a mare like her, she definitely has a wild sense of humor…”

“And you love me for it,” Fizzlepop remarked whispering in Twilight’s ear. “Come on, admit it. You know you do…”

“S-Shut up…” Twilight whispered back. “I thought we agreed not to do this in public!”

“You did. Never said anything about me!” Fizzlepop teased before finally relenting. “Truth be told, I’m rather excited about meeting this ‘Mothra’ again.”

“...If that’s what it even was…” Twilight muttered and Fizzlepop stared at her. “What, don’t tell me it hasn’t crossed your mind? That thing you met may not have been Mothra. It… it may simply have been a divergent species or something or that ilk. It certainly didn’t act the part of the protector Mothra’s said to be…”

“Or it may have just been very pissed off that we encroached on its territory,” Fizzlepop argued. “It could have sensed my dark heart. It wanted to defend itself. If this thing really is a god or a type of guardian, I wouldn’t put it past it capability wise.”

Twilight sighed. Once again this was Fizzlepop’s stubbornness cropping up. Twilight didn’t think this was Mothra, not in the slightest. Fizzlepop wanted to believe it, but maybe she was blinded by her own past and wanting to redeem herself. Personally, Twilight was of the mind they should just turn back now and spare themselves a lot of pain and misery. Maybe find a way to deal with this new threat some other way. But on the other hoof, she was curious to know what exactly her friend had encountered.

Twilight took a deep breath and sighed. “Why do I have a feeling I’m going to regret this?”

She didn’t know how right she was.

Far away and back in Ponyville, Fluttershy was currently in the middle of feeding her animals when she felt… something. A nervous feeling washed over her. Something had gone wrong in nature, and she knew it. Like the entirety of the whole natural order had just been thrown off balance in one fell swoop.

Birds flew away from the Everfree, crowing and screeching out in fear as they took to the skies in their hundreds.

“You feel it too huh?” Fluttershy whispered before breaking into a gallop as she headed back to her house to see how her other animals were faring. They, like the birds in the forest, were afraid of… something. They’d hidden themselves away in far dark corners of her cottage and trembled in fear upon approach.

“Hey… hey, it’s okay. It’s just me,” the Element of Kindness whispered as she picked up a hedgehog in her hoof and cuddled it close to her chest. “Come on now, tell me what’s wrong…”

Of course, in the back of her mind, Fluttershy already had an inkling of what was going on. She knew something had upset the natural order of the world, even if she didn’t know exactly what it was. All of her instincts, quite a few of them being her fight or flight responses were telling her to just run. Just run and never look back. Find someplace to hide, and hope whatever this was that was coming would never find her.

“Oh dear oh dear oh dear…” Fluttershy whispered to herself frantically as she saw the little hedgehog pry itself from her grasp and scamper on off under the bed in fear. The pegasus watched it for a brief moment, before considering the idea of doing exactly the same thing. That thought was dismissed as quickly as it came. No, she said to herself. No, she wouldn’t run away.

If something was coming to Equestria to endanger it, she had a responsibility as an Element of Harmony to go and meet it headlong if she needed to.

The trouble was, Fluttershy mused, she didn’t know exactly what was coming. And truth be told, she honestly suspected she didn’t want to find out. She felt this icy cold chill run up the back of her neck and shivered as she wrapped a blanket around herself via pure instinct. “No…” she thought to herself. “No, I’m not going to let fear control me. Not anymore. I… I have a duty to Equestria to find this threat and help deal with it.”

She heard a distinct popping sound and sighed in relief. “Discord…” she thought with a smile.

“Fluttershy, you do realize your cottage is awfully quiet right?” the chimera’s distinctive voice chimed in as he walked in from the kitchen a cup of tea in hand. “...Well, quieter than normal anyway. No birds singing, no animals humping in the undergrowth or anything like that.”

Fluttershy gave him a distinctive look and he tugged at the collar of his sweater. “....Yeeesh. Something wrong?” he asked as he sat down next to her. “You’re very on edge, very tense. Maybe I should book you a trip to the massage parlor. I’ve heard it works won-”

“DISCORD!” Fluttershy shouted and she winced as she watched the draconequus flinch. “...Sorry, it’s just… I’m on edge. Something’s wrong, can’t you feel it? In the air, in the ground…”

“...Oh, so you figured it out?” Discord sighed. “Of course you of all ponies would be the first to realize something’s coming.”

“What’s coming? What’s coming?” Fluttershy asked, the second time in a more hurried frantic tone of voice. “Please… I… I have to know. The animals… they’re afraid. I’m… I’m afraid.” she whispered and Discord used a claw to lift her head up to meet his eyes.

“Good, you should be,” Discord responded making his friend’s eyes widened. “I say this not to scare you. At least not intentionally. I’m just warning you something’s coming. You’ve felt it, but it’s not something you or any of your fellow ponies have ever faced before. I’m just waking you up to the reality.”

“...As much as I should appreciate that fact, I… somehow don’t,” Fluttershy murmured to herself. “Please Discord, any information you can offer… Any help you can giv-”

“I’m sorry my dear Fluttershy,” Discord said. “But what’s coming… it’s out of my hands. This time is supposed to be one of great upheaval and change for ponykind along with the rest of the world in fact. Me interfering… It would go against the rules of the world. This I’m afraid is something you lot will have to weather for yourselves and figure out how best to handle it.”

Fluttershy looked at the floor, away from her friend. “I… I see…” she whispered.

“Thousands upon thousands of years older than ponykind,” Discord finally said after a few moments making Fluttershy look back at him in a mix of confusion and surprise. “What, I’m not breaking any natural orders from the gods. I’m just telling you what’s to come, that’s all!” he remarked and if Fluttershy didn’t know better she swore she could have caught a trace of a telltale smirk on his face.

Discord pretended not to have noticed and continued on. “From an age when your planet was 10 times more radioactive than today. This animal and others like it consumed this radiation as a food source. As the levels on the surface naturally subsided these creatures adapted to live deeper in the oceans, further underground. Absorbing radiation from the planet's core.”

“So, it’s an animal then…” Fluttershy smiled. “Good, I can handle an animal…”

“Oops, did I say anything?” Discord asked. “Pretend I didn’t say a word! Now, these things were the top of primordial ecosystems. Sometimes gods for all intents and purposes. This, you must understand, comes from a time before even Celesta and Luna were mere babes in someone’s womb. While I have no doubt they might be able to handle some of these titans, I’m not sure about all of them. Especially their King.”

“Their… their king?” Fluttershy whispered not sure if she wanted to know. Discord had taken notice of her discomfort and wrapped himself around her in a comforting moment.

“I’m sorry Fluttershy, I didn’t mean to scar-”

“...Well, congrats, you sure failed at that…” the pegasus muttered in response before sighing at herself and her attitude. Then came the apology. “I’m… I’m sorry Discord, it’s just I’m on edge given what you just told me…”

“Look on the bright side, there are quite a few geniuses all around the world. And you. If anyone can solve and stop what’s coming… Well, I have faith in you dear Fluttershy…” Discord smiled and the mare stared at him. “...Hey, don’t give me that look. I said I couldn’t help. I didn’t say I could root for you!”

Fluttershy could only giggle in response. In another part of Equestria, Twilight and Fizzlepop had found a certain parrot pirate captain at a port. And as all pirates were, she was right in the middle of things.

“This is either madness... or brilliance…” Fizzlepop muttered as she watched Celeano fend off some other pirates who were none too happy about her stealing their fortunes. With a bored expression, she watched as one ran by her. She sighed and idly extended a foreleg making him trip and land on the tavern floor face first.

“Yes, well, I do find it remarkable how often those two traits coincide…” Twilight mused as she ducked to avoid a thrown rum bottle. “...Why am I not surprised we found the good captain in a bar brawl?”

“Good captain?” Fizzlepop asked with a slightly raised eyebrow. “She’s a pirate. Nothing good about it.”

“And that’s what we all thought about you…” Twilight mused with a small smile. Fizzlepop almost immediately shut up at that.

Celeano was currently dueling another pirate, sword to sword. “This… This is the day they’ll remember!” she shouted to nobody in particular before flooring the griffon with a punch to the beak. “This is the day you will always remember as the day you almost caught Captain Celeano!”

“Suppose we should help her?” Twilight asked before letting out a yelp as another pirate was tossed her way bouncing off a conjured shield.

“...Or beat her up for nearly hitting you with her barroom brawler tactics…” Fizzlepop muttered. “One or the other,” she added her horn crackling with lightning.

“Now Fizzlepop, what have we talked about?” Twilight chastised.

“To not go out and attack ponies at the slightest offense, even if it’s towards you?” Fizzlepop mumbled hanging her head, looking like a disobedient child being scolded by their mother.

Twilight smiled before she cast a spell making all time in the room stop for a second and then wrapping Celeano’s attackers up in magical chains. Twilight groaned to herself, there was a reason why she only used this spell when defending a friend. It took so much energy out of her, it often left her wanting of a nice long nap. Starting time again before any more energy could be expended, she watched as Celaeno's attackers fell to the floor in a heap.

“Thank you, Princess,” Celeano bowed. “Apologies you had to find me in the middle of something like this, really… I may or may not have ticked off some old friends. Pirate instincts, you understand. So, what brings you by?” she asked after a small nervous chuckle half expecting to be arrested for disturbing the peace or something like that.

“I… I need your help,” Twilight asked. “I need a ship. Your ship. Considering it’s the only one I know, and all that…” she laughed sheepishly. “Your crew, chartered to fly me and a few others to the Guoxia Province.”

Celeano cast a nervous look towards Fizzlepop in the background. Even clad in her Royal Guard armor as she was, Celeano still hadn’t forgotten what the mare had done to her and her crew. And more importantly, her previous ship. “And I presume she… she’s a part of this group?” the parrot had to ask.

“Yes, she is,” Twilight asked with a dangerous protective edge in her tone. “Is there a problem with this? Because you know, I can always just free those griffons over there and let them resume their business with you…” she trailed off and Fizzlepop shuddered. Twilight could be really scary when she wanted to be.

“None… None at all…” Celeano swallowed. “So, the Guoxia Province eh? Haven’t flown there in a while, it’s a little bit out of my way I must freely admit but it does sound like quite the adventure. Plus, who am I to refuse a request from one of the ponies who got me my freedom back?” she asked with a small bow.

Twilight blushed in embarrassment. “It… it was nothing… I was just...” she mumbled before smiling. “So, you’re up for it? I presume you’ll want payment for this?”

“Eh, you saving me from those idiots and allowing me to keep my treasure was payment enough, I think,” Celeano remarked. “Besides, knowing I helped a Princess of all ponies will definitely heighten my prestige amongst my fellow pirates I should think!” she laughed heartily.

Twilight groaned. Of course. Just like a pirate to want a bit of fame and glory in all of this. It figured, didn’t it? Well, at least she didn’t have to pay anything… “As soon as we get ready, we’re going to Ponyville, there’s somepony I have to pick up…”

Author's Note:

Well, I think a few of you probably suspected this was coming, given my... track record. Mind you, it being centered on Mothra instead of the King himself might be a surprise. And trust me, I have plenty more surprises in store.

First off, huge thanks towards Thunderclap for helping me on certain aspects. He knows what.

Secondly, huge thank you to the Bridge Discord group for being so supportive of this particular idea of mine. Thank you, guys.

Now, am I doing right by the Queen of Monsters and her brethren so far? I'm not entirely sure, which is where you guys come in. Seriously, any feedback you may have is hugely welcomed.