• Published 2nd Dec 2019
  • 820 Views, 160 Comments

Twilight's Reign - James Pwyll

Twilight now rules over Equestria, and she is determined to rule it well

  • ...

Dangerous Treasures

"Got everything, Spike?" Twilight asked.

Her faithful assistant nodded confidently. "Yep! But I just want to make sure. This visit is all business, right? You're not just inviting her because you're a huge fan?"

Twilight seemed offended at the prospect. "How could you say that, Spike?! I intend to keep the uttermost professionalism in these meetings!" Seeing Spike slowly arch an eyebrow to her, beads of sweat started rolling down Twilight's forehead, culminating in her starting to look a little sheepish all of a sudden. "Well...maybe there was a little bit of me wanting to see her again."

Spike chuckled. "There we go. Oh! They're here!"

Twilight looked on as she saw her advisor had the right of it, for Flash once more assumed his duties after having entered the throne room. "Announcing the arrival of the esteemed A. K. Yearling and her associate, Groom Martingale!" He stepped to the side, allowing two older ponies entry.

Twilight, seeing them enter, smiled widely, with Spike naturally rolling his eyes to it all. But nopony said anything for now, instead waiting until the two were at last at the base of the throne stairs, giving a quick bow to their newly-appointed leader. "Princess Twilight. An honor," Yearling declared.

Twilight nodded to her, and also to "Martingale". Then, after a few moments of silence, the young monarch glanced around, looking to all of her guards. "I would like for some privacy with my guests, if it's alright." Though clearly an unexpected request, the guards, after giving a quick glance to her, gave a simultaneous bow in acceptance of her command. One by one they made their way out of the throne room, with Flash being the last as he closed the door. Now alone with her guests and her friend, Twilight stretched out her wings and gently glided down to greet the former, with Spike close behind her. "I figured you wouldn't want to talk openly with an audience."

Yearling chuckled, taking off both her hat and glasses. "No need for apologies, Twilight. I'm grateful for it."

"As am I!" the stallion beside her added. The others looked on as Martingale ripped off his clearly-fake beard, revealing himself as none other than Dr Caballeron, who now scratched his chin vigorously. "I swear, if I had to have that thing on my face one more moment, I was going to go insane!"

Twilight giggled. "Now, I'm sure you're wondering why I called you both here today."

Daring nodded. "Just a little. I've had a few interesting encounters in my life, but a royal invitation is definitely a new one."

Caballeron smirked. "And it is nice to know one as remarkable as myself is finally being recognised as a worthy guest of this fine establishment." After seeing the unamused looks he was getting, he cleared his throat a little. "Um...so...how can we help, your Highness?"

Twilight gave Spike a nod, and he rummaged around his pile of papers, which he'd been carrying with him this whole time, before again addressing her guests. "You two, despite your differences, are undoubtedly the greatest treasure hunters in Equestria."

Caballeron's chest puffed out, and Daring rolled her eyes to his as-yet unspoken bravado, before looking again to Twilight. "Thanks for saying so, but I'm not sure what use that skill can be to the Princess' needs."

Twilight smiled. "Trust me, there is great value in that skill." She began to walk past them, along the wall where all the stained-glass windows were, and they followed behind her as she spoke. "During the years leading up to my coronation, my friends and I came upon many strange and often dangerous artefacts, many of which were used against us or ponykind in general. The alicorn amulet. The staff of Sacanas. These and more have been a serious issue for Equestria, as I'm sure you both well know."

Daring grimaced at the thought of those incidents. "I've heard. I never saw them at work myself, but from all those I've talked to about them, I'm sure they were pretty nasty to go against."

Twilight frowned. "Believe me, they were." She took a deep breath, stopping in her tracks before turning to face them again. "As the foremost trackers of rare and precious artefacts, I decided it was best to call upon the two of you for what I have planned here."

Caballeron looked to her warily. "And what do you have planned, Princess?"

Twilight looked back to him, seeming more serious than before. "I have no doubt that there are other dangerous magical items and weapons out there in the world. Some we may never have even heard of. Some which may even be here within Equestria's borders, unknown and unseen. Given all the damage such things have caused in the past, I've decided that we can no longer leave such things to chance."

She stepped forward, placing a hoof upon Daring's shoulder, smiling to her yet again. "I ask you both, and any who might be willing to work with you, to go out as far as you can, both to lands old and new to you, to find as many of these dangerous artefacts as you can, before the day should come when others might get them."

Daring nodded, finally understanding. "I get it. You want those things under lock and key, right?"

Twilight too nodded. "I do. I fully expect that, at some point in the future, some creature will stumble upon one or more of them. Some creature who might not have the best interests of others in mind. I would prefer it if those things were under our watch, before it's too late."

Daring considered that, glancing to her recently-acquired colleague, before smiling again to Twilight. "Very well. Consider it done."

Caballeron, by contrast, was not so excited at the prospect. "Eeeeeeeeh, pardon me for my impertinence, Princess. But you ask a great deal. To scour the length and breadth of the land for treasure is one thing. It was my profession after all. But to go after items of such danger? That is a risk on a whole other level." He smirked as he glanced to the side. "I don't really make it a point to put myself in dangerous situations like that if I can help it. So with all due respect, what reason have I to accept this charge you give me?"

Twilight raised an eyebrow to that, and Spike shook his head, clearly not happy with the stallion's reaction. But Twilight, thankfully, was not upset by his remark, and indeed started to look like this was something she'd expected. "You're right. It is a big ask. But perhaps you'd be more receptive if I were to, shall we say, sweeten the pot?"

Slowly, Caballeron cast her a look. "Caballeron is listening."

Looking down to Spike, Twilight nodded to him, and the latter pulled out one scroll in particular, leading to the Princess again addressing her less-than-helpful guest. "As I'm sure you're aware, Doctor, you and your associates have committed a number of criminal acts over the years. Not only here in Equestria but out among our neighbouring allies. If you were to accept this task I ask of you, and work for the future safety of Equestria, I will see fit to offer you and those who've worked with you a full pardon for your past actions."

Caballeron actually seemed amused by that notion. "A pardon? Forgive me, Princess, but that hardly seems like much of a rewards. Besides, how numerous could my past indiscretions have possibly been?" As if waiting for that very question, Twilight gave Spike a firm nod, which he returned, before finally unrolling the scroll he'd been holding. Both Daring and Caballeron watched as the thing fell to the ground, rolling out and stretching forth to a truly surprising degree, to the point where it was heading straight for the other side of the room. In fact, so long was that scroll that it actually hit the opposing wall before it managed to fully unfurl. Caballeron, seeing this enormous list before him, gulped, before slowly turning to look to his Princess. "Yes...well...perhaps my life had led me to one or two...misdemeanours." After seeing the incredulous looks he was getting, he finally sighed. "So...about that pardon..."

Twilight smiled. "Glad to hear you're on board. With the two of you working together, I'm sure there won't be a single dangerous magical relic in Equestria that will escape your notice."

Daring chuckled. "Oh yeah, I think I'm gonna really like you as our leader, Princess."

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