• Published 21st Oct 2019
  • 4,412 Views, 328 Comments

King: The Beginning - DanishDash



The big day is here, Celestia's son has been born! From moment Celestia laid eyes on her little Spero, she knew he would do great things. Follow him on adventures and as he grows up, find the answer to the question that still lingers. Who is his dad?

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Chapter 4

The time had come, the fourth day had arrived and it was time for the nobles to meet their prince and future ruler. All of them were gathered in the throne room, the hall filled with murmurs, whispers and gossip. The princesses had not yet arrived and so there was time to plan out their little games.

Some knew this prince could provide them with new opportunities, lining up potential suitors in the future, seeking favor in taking special interest in the prince, schooling, even babysitting. Political favour and advancement in Canterlot high society was the goal today, at least it was for them and the princesses knew it.

It was a game as old as the monarchy and everyone gathered here today were master players. Only a few tried to act on their principles, the kind Celestia valued, but that did not mean they were any less skilled at navigating the political landscape.

Lord Fancy Pants was one of the few nobles who had Celestia's trust, of course this meant he was a target and he knew it. Having favour was just as much of a curse as it was a blessing, being favored made you a bigger rival, one to be taken down. It helped that Fancy Pants knew how to play the game and still be above it, but no matter how much he hated the game, he had to play it. If nothing else, it kept the balance of power in check and helped with the survival of his family.

Essentially, you needed to be aware of two ponies when playing this game. Fancy Pants was one of them, the other was of course, Prince Blueblood. The two had a rivalry and were both masters of the game and titans within the Canterlot high society. They hated one another to the bitter core, but both of them never openly flaunted their disdain for each other.

No, their hatred and rivalry was only something you whispered about, you never, EVER, talked about it openly, and you NEVER showed your true emotions or thoughts. Doing so would be like showing your hoof in poker and it could cost you dearly.

Long story short, the nobility was a hornets nest where every word, expression and glance was a carefully calculated gamble.

Fancy Pants stood to the side with his wife, Fleur De Lis, a unicorn model with beautiful white fur and a light pink mane and tail. Despite her working as a supermodel she was no less intelligent than any other mare brought up in the nobility. She was not some naive mare who did not know how it all worked and she has shown herself to be an excellent player, one to be watched out for.

Like her husband Fancy Pants, she hated the game and would much rather be without it, but she knew it was simply part of life in Canterlot. She stayed close to Fancy, looking as lovely as ever as she observed the crowd of nobles along with her husband.

"They all look very... Hungry.." Fleur said, not knowing how else to describe the mood of the nobles.

"They are planning my dear." Fancy said. "All hungry to get a piece of the prince, to use him as a pawn."

Fleur looked to her husband. "Do you think the rumors are true?" She did not need to clarify which rumor, it had been the topic of the palace and Canterlot for months now.

"If it is, then we do well not to speak of it. We owe it to the princess." They both knew what the nobility would be like if they got confirmation to the rumor that the prince's father was a commoner. It did not matter to Fancy Pants or Fleur De Lis, but it mattered a great deal to many of the nobles. Such information could be valuable, it was the ultimate price right now and anypony with such knowledge could become a very dangerous rival and player.

Fleur narrowed her eyes, the expression change was so subtle that without a trained eye for such details would miss it, but Fancy saw it clearly. "You know something.." She said even more hushed than before.

Fancy Pants did not look at her or speak for several seconds, when he finally spoke it was short. "I have my suspicion, but I do well not to speak about it." His wife nodded ever so slightly and looked out to the crowd again. She understood, even unconfirmed rumors and speculations were dangerous, spreading what he was thinking even to her would put them at risk. Especially if he knew nothing for sure, for now, it was best to keep whatever cards they had VERY close to them.

Suddenly, like a breath of fresh air, the huge doors opened and the guards stood at attention and all the nobles bowed low. "The royal sisters, Princess Celestia and Princess Luna, with his royal highness, Prince Spero!" The announcer said before making way for the royal family as they calmly walked in. Spero sat on his mother's back, looking over the room in fascination.

The royal sisters did not say anything, nor did they pay them any attention. They simply walked dignified up to their thrones and sat down, with Spero being levitated onto a small pillow in front of Celestia. Only at that point did Celestia speak to them. "You may rise."

All of the nobles did as their princess allowed, all looking up at the radiance of the peak of true nobility, the place they all wanted to reach, but never could. The sun and the moon, the beacon of power, elegance, and wisdom. It was not something they could ever reach, but the closer they could stand, the more they could bath in their glory and enjoy whatever bits of power their light granted them.

However, now, this light had dimmed, a shadow in the form of the new Prince was now enjoying the full attention of their princess, gaining everything the nobles wanted. It would be some time before they would ever benefit from whatever light this newest member of the royal family would cast.

Some saw him as a threat, others, an opportunity.

This was a fact everypony in this hall knew, and right now the greatest game was being set up, Celestia and Luna knew it, hence their serious look. The game had changed, new players, new rules, but the same goal.

Let the games, begin..

~~***~~

An hour earlier.

"You know what will happen today.." Luna said as she sat on the couch in Celestia's private suite. The two sisters enjoyed some tea as Spero explored the final frontier that was Celestia's mane, every once in a while his little head would poke out and give a sheepish smile before diving into the unknown once again.

Celestia sighed and nodded. "The nobles, I know they have been scheming, like they always do." Her small smile was only caused by feeling her son's tiny hooves move around on top of her as he played within her mane. "They played these games for centuries Lulu, we know how to handle them."

Luna nodded. "We do indeed, but with the birth of your son, the game will change." They both knew it, and they knew it would be hard to protect him from whatever influence the nobles wanted to have. "So I say we flip the table."

"Hm?" Celestia raised an eyebrow as her sister smirked. It only took a second after that for Celestia to smile. "Clever, as always Lulu.. We change the balance of power within the nobility."

"Indeed, it should create enough chaos within them to keep Spero out of it for a while." Luna said, both of them already thinking up a plan how to do it.

"But in doing so we are putting others at risk.." Celestia sighed with a frown, knowing full well how cruel the major players could be. "Besides, our nephew expects to be the first of the nobles to greet my son, since he is family."

"Then call up somepony else, somepony who can handle the fallout and turn it into an advantage. One who can survive it." Luna did not need to say it, both of them knew exactly who to call up.

~~***~~

"Lord Fancy Pants, please, step forward." Celestia's calm voice said, which shocked every single noble. Though nopony showed it, Celestia had enough practice to notice the slightest of clues to see they were all getting tense.

Even Fancy Pants and Fleur de Lis looked surprised, but like the rest, refused to show it. Instead they gracefully stepped in front of the crowd, walking right up to the foot of the steps that led to the throne and bowed. "Your majesty, allow us to express our joy and give your our congratulations on the birth of your son."

Fancy Pants had instantly understood what had just happened, so did everypony else. Celestia had just taken the board, flipped it over and made Fancy Pants the most powerful player on the new board. Even though Blueblood remained calm on the outside, Luna noted he was tense, his eyes showing outrage, shock and anger, but he hid it well.

Celestia inclined her head, her expression softened as she looked at the two ponies, showing favour towards them. "I thank you Fancy Pants, my son too, i'm sure."

"Bhah!" Spero let out and then giggled in delight as he found his hoof very interesting to stick in his mouth and suck on.

Fleur giggled. "He is cute your majesty, i'm sure he will grow up to be a handsome stallion."

Celestia joined in Fleur's giggle and replied. "Well, I have until then to double the guard to protect him from all the suitors he will surely have."

There was a wordless conversation being played out between Fancy Pants and the sisters, hidden by the pleasant conversation Fleur provided for them as cover. He knew he had been placed in this position by intend, it showed the great trust Celestia had in him and Fleur, and with that came loyalty. That sort of loyalty was dangerous, but it was a double edged blade, he was now an even bigger target to be taken down, but any wrong move would mean facing the worst kind of consequences. The biggest reason to target him was now also his greatest shield, so, he needed to play his part.

The two bowed again and walked back into the crowd, then, and only then was Blueblood called upon. He stepped forward, neither smiling or frowning, simply holding himself dignified, never showing signs of being outraged or offended his rival had been called up before him.

He bowed deeply for a moment, then looked up, straight at Celestia, not even granting his cousin a glance. "Auntie, congratulations of the birth of your son." He did not say anything else, not yet at least. Instead he was locking eyes with his aunt, both of them taking a moment to figure out the best way to play this. Blueblood was the first one to break it off, smiling a little as he continued. "It is a happy day for all of us, seeing an heir to the throne, the hope of all Equestria."

Even though he said that, there was no real meaning behind it, he was just saying what they all expected him to say, what he was supposed to say. It was an empty gesture, saying something so generic he might as well have been sarcastic, but he did what was expected of him, no more, no less.

"Thank you Blueblood." Celestia said with a small smile. "My son thanks you as well."

"I'm sure he is, your majesty, i'm sure he is."

~~***~~

The rest of the nobles offered up their congratulations one by one as expected, soon enough they had all greeted the prince and were on their way out as Celestia had another matter to attend to. Other kingdoms wished to offer their congratulations and meet the prince of the sun.

To prepare for the arrival of the royals and ambassadors, the whole throne room was filled with tables of all sorts of delicious treats for the guests. Of course before any of them could dig in, there was the formal greeting from the rulers of the other kingdoms.

The first one to approach and offer their greetings were king Flavius, ruler of the Griffon Kingdom. He was a tall grey feathered griffon who commanded respect and showed the signs of wisdom only age and experience could provide him. He bowed respectfully, but not as low as Celestia's subjects would go. "My dear princess, I come to offer my congratulations. I bring your son a gift, a golden royal feather, to show our friendship, one that he will hopefully continue."

Celestia smiled and nodded. "I am sure my son will come to respect the Griffon Kingdom as much as myself. Thank you for coming all this way."

"It is an honor and an important day." He smiled and stepped back as his servants placed his gift on a table reserved for the gifts.

Next up was king Aspen and Queen Fyr from the forest kingdom of Thicket. Aspen was deer with white and golden fur, even his antlers were golden like it was a crown. Both royals stood tall and noble, but not unapproachable. They bowed their heads in respect to their fellow ruler.

"We greet you princess of the sun and moon, and we also come to honor the birth of your son, prince Spero." Aspen said with a pleasant smile.

Fyr nodded. "We were delighted to hear the news of the birth of your son, as a sign of this we have brought him a gift." A deer servant presented Celestia and Spero with a pot containing a very small tree. "It is from our very own garden."

"We thank you both for coming, and for your gift." Celestia replied and inclined her head.

After the calm and mild tempered rulers of the deer kingdom, came the loud and not so mild tempered ambassador of Yakyakistan. Equestria and Yakyakistan were not really allies, but it would be an important step on the road to friendship if the ambassador was invited.

There was not much said, but a gift was provided from prince Rutherford himself. A yak helmet with gold rings forged into it, a strange gift for a foal, but the intend was good.

Next up was the ambassador from Saddle Arabia, like Yakyakistan it was far away and therefore the congratulations were offered by the ambassador instead of the queen herself. They offered their congratulations and very fine silk blankets for the newborn prince as a gift.

The dragon ambassador presented them with a big gem, one that the king himself had sent in order to let the alliance continue.

Finally there was princess Cadence, representing the Crystal Empire. Of course she had already met her cousin, but it was just as much to greet the other representatives and rulers, and it was simply tradition. Her and Shining Armor presented the prince with a very fine crystal, carved into look like a pony. Not really a toy, but it was very beautiful and symbolized the close friendship between Equestria and the Crystal Empire.

After all the greetings was over, Celestia and Luna started to mingle, making pleasant conversation, letting the royals meet the prince up close. At some point however, princess Luna excused herself, much to the confusion of Celestia, but then again, it was very late for her and she needed to rest before she had to resume her duties during the night.

~~***~~

The room was dark, only a few candles provided light. A lone guard stood at attention, awaiting whoever had summoned him. The guard was a Pegasus, dark grey fur, brown eyes and black mane and tail. Despite being a normal pony, he had joined the Lunar Guard and had build up a fine reputation among his fellow guards.

Suddenly the door to the small room opened and to his surprise it was princess Luna who entered. He straightened a little, refusing to show any sign of weakness or nervousness before the mistress of the night.

She didn't speak at first, she simply walked over to a desk, looking at some papers and then back at him, eyeing him for a few seconds before she spoke. "Lieutenant, Swift Strike yes?"

"Yes your majesty, proudly."

Luna nodded and looked down at the papers again. "Your service record is impressive, best recruit in your class, top marks in your exams, youngest lieutenant." She turned to him with a pleased smile. "And a glowing recommendation from Shining Armor." She walked up to him. "Tell me lieutenant, and I want you to be honest with me. What made you join the Lunar Guard?"

Swift Strike did not have to think long. "I know most of the action happens at night, my lady, I want to do something, not simply enjoy the peace of the day."

"I see." Luna simply said, but with a pleased smile. "You may have heard, but my sister and I are planning to create a new guard regiment for my nephew." Swift Strike gave a single nod. "I would like you to lead it, as a captain."

Now Swift Strike's body failed him, he twitched in surprise, but he quickly regained his composure. "My lady?" Did he hear right? Lead his own regiment? As a captain no less? But that would mean skipping a rank, it was not unheard of, but it was rare.

"I am planning to recommend you to my sister, though the reasons are not what she thinks." She could see another twitch of confusion, so she continued to explain. "Despite your good service record I've also seen the complaints from your fellow officers.. You have a brutal streak, beatings is just one of the allegations.. Yet Shining Armor recommends you, I think he is thinking the same as me.. We need someone who is willing to protect the prince, someone who is willing to go beyond the rules if need be."

Swift Strike Started to understand. "I see."

"Good." Luna smirked. "The nobles, our enemies, all of them wants to get a piece of my nephew and use him, your job is simple. Protect him, eliminate these threats." Her eyes became cold, her smile vanished. Her sister knew how to play the games of the nobles, but Luna knew with the game being changed, they needed a new card to play, that card would be Swift Strike. "Do you understand what I mean?"

Swift Strike took a deep breath before looking at the princess, meeting her calculating eyes with his own dutiful ones.

"Absolutely, your majesty, I do indeed."

Author's Note:

So, I am thinking about giving Fancy and Fleur a daughter later on. You know someone to be a friend to Spero later and grow up near him.

What should her name be?

Leave a suggestion in the comment section and any other idea you might have about their daughter.

Thank you so much for the support you have shown so far, the ideas and interest shown so far.

This chapter included the suggestions and ideas of Lightning Ace and Great White Prime