• Published 20th Jul 2019
  • 656 Views, 49 Comments

A Series of Great Ideas (Or Not) - TheGuineaPig45

Shining Armor and Flam wake up in bed together, no memory of how they got there or what they did the previous night. All they know is that Apple Bloom has been kidnapped, and they're the guilty party.

  • ...

Chapter Eighteen: (Romantic) Partners in Crime

Boomer had to drag Shining Armor by his tail back to the dining hall.

The prince held onto a curtain, trying his best to stay away from Prince Blueblood, but eventually just pulled the cloth off of the window.

“Please, don’t make me!” Shining Armor cried, desperately scraping against the floor. “I can do jail. I can do a lifetime of community service. I can even do Tartarus! But I can’t do Blueblood!”

“That’s a strange place to draw the line,” Boomer sighed. “But, I’m sorry. These are just my orders from the princesses.” He heaved an unwilling Shining Armor onto a chair beside Flam, looking directly across from Blueblood. Shining quickly ducked under the table, then pulled Flam down with him.

“What do we do?!” he whispered, anxiously looking around to make sure his enemy wasn’t joining them. “If I have to listen to Blueblood talk about himself for more than two minutes, I’m going to lose it. And last time I lost it, we kidnapped Apple Bloom! Do we really want to end up kidnapping her again?!”

“I kinda feel like she wouldn’t appreciate that,” Flam replied. He thought for a couple of seconds, then gasped. “Wait a second. Maybe this is a test from the princesses!” Shining’s ears perked up. “If Blueblood was the source of what happened last night, maybe they’re trying to teach you how to deal with him in a safe manner that doesn't lead to you committing a crime!”

“You think they would count a small, itty-bitty homicide as a crime?”

Flam heartily chuckled. “Don’t worry, pal. There’s one thing you have now that you didn't have last night when dealing with Blueblood. And that’s me.”

“And me,” Boomer interjected, popping his head under the table. The stallions glared at him. “What? Was I not supposed to be part of your secret huddle? Got it. We’re not that close. Yet.”

“You know, as former Captain of the Royal Guard,” Shining stated, pushing Boomer’s head away, “I seem to remember a policy about not becoming friends with the prisoners. You wouldn’t want to break the rules, Boomer.”

“Says the pony who kidnapped a filly and spent the entire day trying to cover it up.”


“Shining Armor,” Flam said, grabbing his face with his two hooves and pulling it toward his own. “I know you’ve been the brains in this operation, and that some of my ideas have been… lukewarm, at best. But trust me, I got this. Just follow my lead.”

Before the prince could respond, Flam enthusiastically poked his head out from under the table and waved at the pony across from him.

“There you are,” Blueblood said, rolling his eyes. “You’re Shining Armor’s partner in crime, right? Although, I heard you were partners in more ways than one. Maybe that’s why you were under the table for so long.”

“Yes, we’re business partners,” Flam replied, barely batting an eye. “We’re designing a new product together, created solely for the most beautiful of ponies.”

Blueblood’s face lit up, and for a moment, he completely forgot who he was talking to. “I’m the most beautiful of ponies! Tell me more!”

“Well, we know that sometimes, not everypony is appreciative of your beauty. Some ponies even dare to think they’re more beautiful than you. But that can’t be true, right?”

“No! Those ponies deserve a fate worse than Tartarus!”

“Um, I wouldn’t go that far, but sure,” Flam nervously chuckled. “Anyway, you won’t have to worry about that anymore, because Shining Armor and I are working on a special lotion to make your mane and coat the most perfect they’ve even been. So perfect that nopony can even challenge the idea that you are the most beautiful.”

Shining Armor, understanding what was happening, peeked his head out from under the table. “Boomer,” he whispered to the guard. “Could you hand me some food?”

“Sure thing, bud,” Boomer replied. “Any preferences?”

“Everything gooey.”

“We can help you create the most visually stunning version of yourself there ever was,” Flam continued. “Our Wonder Lotion will make your coat shiny, your mane full and wavy, and your eyes will be popping harder than corn on an open fire.”

“My eyes need to pop harder than corn!” Blueblood exclaimed, dashing toward Flam. “I’m SOLD! Where is it?! I need it RIGHT NOW!”

Flam reached under the table, where Shining Armor handed him a bowl filled with a goopy brown mixture. “Why, I always keep it handy. I mean, ponies like us always need to look good, right?”

Blueblood forcefully grabbed the bowl, then sniffed it and gagged. “Blegh,” he groused, dipping onto a hoof in. “What is in this?”

“Ummm, love,” Flam improvised. “We make all of our products with love.”

“I like love.”

“It would be very sad if you didn't.”

Blueblood scooped a hoof full of the mixture, and began rubbing it on his belly, then in his mane. Soon enough, his whole body was covered with the brown substance. Shining Armor was giggling from under the table.

“I don’t feel a difference,” Blueblood said, smelling himself. “And I don’t exactly have the most beautiful aroma right now.”

“But you will have the most beautiful body soon enough,” Flam assured. “Just wait thirty minutes for the substance to dry, and you’ll be an all-new stallion!”

Blueblood grinned. “Thank you so much! Oh! I need to find a mirror. I’ll pay you once I see results!”

The stallion ran off, out of the dining hall, and Shining Armor, Flam, and Boomer burst out into laughter.

“Easiest con ever,” Flam chortled. “Talk about a pony’s beauty, they’ll take anything we give them. What’d you make, Shiny?”

“Chocolate frosting mixed with gravy, mustard, and melted cheese,” Shining Armor giggled, coming out from behind the table. “Deliciously disgusting.”

“Man, he’s going to be so upset when he finds out!” Flam laughed. “That’ll teach him not to mess with you, Shining Armor!”

“Haha, yeah! Now let’s eat. I’m starving!”

The two stallions sat down to eat, chatting and giggling about what they had just pulled off. For a moment, they almost forgot about what was in store for them.

Shining Armor and Flam strode into the throne room, each stomp confident and loud. While the princesses still carried the solemn looks from earlier, the stallions were nothing but smiles.

We did it!” they harmonized, dancing over to the elevated platform. “We’re the best! We did it! We passed your test!” They started prancing around without a care in the world.

The four princesses looked at each other.

“...What test?” Twilight asked.

The two stallions stopped in their tracks, frozen by her words. They looked at each other, and gulped.

“You know,” Shining Armor said, his voice slightly wavering. “The test where I have to get rid of Blueblood without doing anything illegal?”

The princesses stared at him, silent. Luna blinked.

“You mean,” the prince whimpered, “we got Blueblood covered in frosting for no reason?!”

“You got him covered in WHAT?!” Luna gasped.

“Frosted tips!” Flam quickly blurted out. “We gave him frosted tips! Cause you know, the ‘Magic of Murder’ and all that jazz!”

“The WHAT?!”

“Friendship!” Shining injected, covering Flam’s mouth. “He means the ‘Magic of Friendship’!”

“Bottom line, we did nothing illegal, so yay, us!” Flam cheered.

All four princesses glared at them. The stallions sighed, sat down on the floor, and remained silent, their heads hanging low.

“We wanted to talk to you about your punishment,” Princess Celestia began, spreading her wings out wide as a display of authority. “It has become clear to us that you are fully responsible for your actions throughout the last twenty-four hours. Alcohol does not absolve you of your crimes, which include kidnapping, unlawful entry into several residences, destruction of property, teleporting under the influence, and endangerment of multiple ponies.”

“Honestly, I’m impressed,” Boomer whispered into Shining’s ear. “When I got drunk, I only committed, like, public indecency.” The prince waved him away.

“However, us princesses are also witnesses to your character, and acknowledge that this is not within your normal realm of actions. Thus, we have decided to give you two options.”

“Because we couldn’t agree on one,” Princess Luna grumbled to herself. Princess Celestia shot her sister a look.

“Either,” she continued, the two stallions hanging onto her every word, “you can serve out your punishment, which we shall disclose later, or we shall cast a spell that will allow you to redo this experience from the start.”

Shining Armor and Flam looked at each other. “Excuse me?” the former asked. “Redo the experience?”

“Yes,” Twilight Sparkle said, flying down to them. “We would send you back to the night of Blueblood’s party, and all you would have to do is make better decisions. You’d still have your memories of everything that’s happened today, but nopony else would.”

“We’re giving you the opportunity for a clean slate, basically,” Princess Cadance added. “Start over, and as long as you don’t kidnap Apple Bloom, everything’s solved!”

Shining Armor beamed. “That’s perfect! Of course we’re going to do that! That’s a great idea! Right, Flam?” No response. “...right?”

The mustached stallion remained silent, lost in thought. After a whole minute, he turned to Shining Armor. “I can’t.”

“What do you mean?”

“I can’t get rid of this experience!” Flam cried out. “This has been the best day of my life! I found friends in the Unicorn Squad, got a temporary brother, and stood up to my actual brother! Not to mention all the great stuff I’ve gotten to do with you! Secret love affairs, pulling off cons, laughing in the face of danger… We’ve really bonded today. I don’t want to lose that.”

“Well, we would still remember it,” Shining Armor pointed out.

“But the other ponies wouldn’t. I’d lose my first day of true self-confidence. I’m sorry, Shining, but I’d rather just serve our punishment out, whatever it is.”

“But if we do that, my reputation, my marriage, and my life are all done for. I need this second chance!”

“You both have to agree,” Princess Celestia stated. “I know it’s tough, but you need to reach a decision.”

The two stallions stared at each other, hoping the other would give in. As much as he valued Flam’s friendship, Shining Armor didn't want to risk his own future. And as much as he wanted to make Shining Armor happy, Flam also wanted to make himself happy, too.

They simultaneously opened their mouths to speak.

And that’s when the zeppelin crashed through the wall.