• Published 12th Oct 2019
  • 6,373 Views, 399 Comments

My Life As A Royal Changeling - Tangent



A middle aged brony finds herself inexplicably replacing Chrysalis as the new queen of the hive a few decades before a certain pony prophesy comes to fruition. Now the new queen must decide what direction to take the kingdom she inherited..

  • ...
19
 399
 6,373

Chapter 1

Queen Chrysalis was dead.

One moment she was there, as tall and imposing as ever, her unique mane waving in the wasteland winds as her equally unique eyes gazed out over her assembled forces. Not that she felt a particular need to do so, as her preferred tactic for whenever her hive went to war was the simple swarm rush. Throw enough changelings at a problem and said problem generally either went away or otherwise became a nonissue in short order. Sure, the cost in changeling lives could be a bit steep, but the little idiots were practically born to be disposable and interchangeable, with only a few ever achieving any real notoriety for skill, power, or cleverness.

The next moment, there was a blinding flash of blue-green lightning, accompanied by a deafening crash of thunder, and all that was left of the former changeling queen was a blackened scorch mark on the desert floor and a puddle of sizzling green goo mixed with bits of black carapace and pale greyish green meaty chunks. An unfortunate amount of which just happened to be covering a brand new changeling queen, very similar in appearance to the previous one, if slightly smaller.

While this unexpected regime change was rather more abrupt, and less involved with the usual preliminary stages of egg, larva, and nymph that they had grown to expect from their own lifecycles, their was remarkably little panic.

Well, not from the witnesses anyway, as the new queen took in her situation, blinked a few times as she looked at her surroundings, her new minions, and then herself before she started screaming her head off.

Those changelings present who had some familiarity with foreign medicine nodded sagely at this. Screaming was a good sign for live births, as this meant that the newborn was breathing and had a healthy set of lungs.

The swearing was also a promising sign that the new queen was very advanced for her age, and suitably assertive for her position in the hive.

The fact that the lightning bolt that had sparked it all off had come from a clear blue sky with not even a single cloud in sight was noted, but as there was nowhere for an enemy flyer to actually hide the matter was merely entered into the records as "suspicious, cause unknown."

*O o O o O*

"Okay, let me get this straight. Your former queen, Chrysalis, is gone. Most likely telefragged when I appeared at her exact location in a flash of lightning from a clear blue sky..." the new queen began, as she settled into the large, multi-capacity bathing pool deep within the hive spire, where a pair of attendants were engaged in washing the sticky remains of their previous queen off of their new queen. Something that made said new ruler shudder every time she thought too much about it.

"Yes, my Queen," one attendant replied respectfully.

"Wait... What does telefragged mean?" the other asked in confusion.

"It's one of the potential results of attempting to teleport to a space already occupied by something else. Either one or both objects will be displaced to make room for the other object, or one or both objects will fragment as a more violent form of displacement. So: Telefragging is the result of forced fragmentation due to teleportation."

"Ah, I see, my Queen," the confused changling's expression belied this statement.

"He doesn't see, does he?"

"No, my Queen. She does not."

The new queen blinked at this correction, but did took no further action to rebuke either attendant.

"And because I'm here, and Chrysalis is, for lack of a better term, chunky salsa, I'm the new queen of this hive."

"Affirmative, my Queen. And the better term you are looking for would be either dead or deceased," the attendant explained to the young queen, assuming that even as mature and developed as she seemed to be, their new ruler was just born and so probably didn't understand the concept of death very well. Hmmm... Might want to keep the more expendable changelings between her and the rest of the hive in case the new queen was of a mind to break a few of her toys. Oh, wait...

"You have no idea what a metaphor is, do you?"

"No, my Queen. I do not," the attendant idly wondered if this was going to be her last few moments before the new queen decided to experiment with the concept of mortality now that she had been introduced to it.

"Um..." the confused one continued, oblivious to the possibility that she may be provoking their imminent demise by testing their new queen's patience. "What is chunky salsa?"

"Salsa is a spicy condiment derived from tomatoes, onions, peppers, and other vegetables that have been chopped up and mixed together for the purpose of either enhancing the flavor of otherwise bland or mildly spicy food, or disguising the flavor of food that has begun to spoil. Chunky just means that the ingredients are still in recognizable chunks of whatever they had been prior to being chopped."

"As you say, my Queen," the other attendant confirmed even as she began to plot the demise of the idiot whose questions were bound to eventually irritate the new queen into creating an opening for a new pair of bath attendants by eliminating her current ones as a way of demonstrating what she had been talking about. Not that the new queen had started yelling or berating either of them, but that just made the experience all the more unnerving.

"Are you alright? You're beginning to look a little pale..."

Both of the new queen's attendants were veterans of their former queen's bathtime rants and tirades, and had weathered years of casual abuse. Still, it took all the will power they could muster not to bolt at their new queen's strange concern. Showing concern was how Chrysalis liked to lead in before she did something truly horrible, and the more sincere she appeared to be, the more severe the inevitable outcome would end up.

The new queen, for her part, was beginning to wonder why her... well, she supposed that they were her subjects since they kept insisting that she was their queen... were suddenly trembling, and began to look around for whatever spooked them...

*O o O o O*​

The new queen was inspecting the hive spire, familiarizing herself with it as best she could for a structure that only had a few continuous features nested within its otherwise ever-shifting interior. Said feature turning out to be the actual primary purpose of the magic absorbing throne, as without it the hive was vulnerable to giant burrowing predators such as maulwurfs and tatzlewurms that could threaten the entire colony. Granted, the magic absorbing properties of the throne that powered the effect weren't a perfect defense, the lightning bolt that had brought her into this world having disproved that adequately enough, but since it did serve an actual legitimate purpose to the benefit of the hive she decided to leave it intact.

Currently, she was in a chamber apparently known as the Hall of Queens, where each queen of the hive was supposedly depicted all the way back to the original founder. For the most part, almost all of the queens looked to be similar to Queen Chrysalis. Tall, dark, and menacing, with actual manes and the same unique eyes no other changeling had, although there was more color variation than she expected. However, at the far end of the hall, there were three displays that depicted queens of a much different appearance, more like what she remembered the changelings becoming when King Thorax took over the hive in the two part episode where former villains had saved the day.

"Humblebee?" She had taken the time to learn the name of the attendant currently assigned to her (the two that had assisted her in the baths had apparently come down with a case of nerves for some inexplicable reason, so she had sent them off to recover).

"Yes, my Queen?"

"Who are those three? And why do they look different?"

"Ah, those would be the Founder and her two immediate descendants, my Queen. As to why they look that way, I cannot say. Your mother had the royal archives sealed for at least a generation or two. Noling currently alive has even been within those chambers."

"Right. Can the archives be unsealed?"

"If that is your command, then yes, my Queen."

"That will be Our next stop then," she decided. First though, she was going to at least take a look at the names of her predecessors and read the plaques under their displays. Or have Humblebee read them for her, as she had yet to make sense of any of the writing she had come across. "Wait, scratch that, Humblebee. The archives can wait until after I've been tutored on how to read. Does the hive have tutors?"

"Yes, my Queen, the hive has several tutors and instructors that you may find suitable for your needs, whether it be literacy, mathematics, espionage, or shapeshifting. You may select any of them that you may desire."

"Something to do once the inspection tour is over then. In the meantime, would you mind reading off the names of my ancestors and provide a brief summary of what's written on their plaques?"

"Of course, my Queen," Humblebee stated, pleased that the new queen was taking an interest in the hive's history. "At which end shall I start?"

"The far end, Humblebee. I'd rather learn about my predecessors in the order they came for now."

"As you will, my Queen," Humblebee nodded in agreement as he led the new Queen to the far end of the chamber. He took note that a work crew had rushed in behind them once they had progressed far enough down the hall, presumably to attempt to quickly set up a display for Queen Chrysalis. Hopefully whatever they set up wouldn't offend the new queen.

The first display depicted an elegant figure of regal stature bearing an expression that somehow conveyed both wisdom and humor in equal measures.

"According to the plaque, Queen Amorphous Metamorphous, founder of the hive and first queen of Gandahar."

"Gandahar?" the new queen asked, cocking a brow at the unexpected names of both the queen and the nation.

"That's what the plaque says, my Queen."

"Okay. Carry on then."

"Next is Queen Ambisextra, who oversaw the completion of her mother's final designs and initiator of Gandahar's first diplomatic programs, forming various alliances with our neighbors during that era."

The new queen got the impression that Queen Ambisextra was supposed to have been drop-dead sexy, or was at least seen that way by whoever made the display. The next depiction showed a queen with a much more innocent appearance.

"Queen Nymphodora, the Childlike Empress, May her soul soar freely beyond the pains inflicted by this cruel world," Humblebee read somberly.

"I take it something bad happened to her?"

"The plaque does not say, my Queen."

"Oh. Well, on to the next queen then, Humblebee." The pair moved on to the first display depicting a queen with the darker, more sinister appearance of the later line, complete with legs riddles with holes.

"This would be Queen Epagogikí Allagí the Avenger, initiator of the first Great Change..."

And on Humblebee went, reading off each successive queen's name and a brief description as they passed their displays. Queen Malign the Terrible, Queen Amore Perdue the Great, Queen Mimsy the Mad, Queen Furiosa Opinione the Innovator, and so on, until eventually the two reached the final display.

"Humblebee."

"Yes, my Queen?"

"I can't help but notice that Queen Chrysalis' display is a bucket."

"So it is, my Queen."

"It seems to be filled with what I can only presume to be the remains of the former queen."

"That does appear to be the case, my Queen."

"Have that dealt with and get a proper display for Queen Chrysalis arranged."

*O o O o O*​

Humblebee continued the inspection tour, leading the new queen away from the workers carrying out her instructions in the Hall of Queens. Hopefully they would put up a proper display of the late queen by the time her daughter returned to see it. Speaking of which...

"My Queen?"

"Yes, Humblebee?"

"Might I enquire if you have decided on a name yet? After all, your late mother had not left any instruction as to her heir's identity and as you know, she did not have a chance to name you directly."

The new queen blinked, then appeared to think about the question. "Then I can be whatever I want to be, can't I?" she asked herself under her breath.

"I beg your pardon, my Queen, but I didn't quite catch that."

"I said that I am Queen Whatevra Wa'Nabe," the young queen stated more firmly.

"As you say, my Queen. I'll be sure to pass that along to the others." Humblebee resolved to ask the young queen how her self applied appellation was actually spelled once she became sufficiently literate, as it wouldn't do to offend her by making assumptions about her clearly made up name that didn't actually mean anything. It did, however, suitably resemble a phrase if parsed out, and one with regal enough asperations for a changeling queen.

"What?"

"Oh. Um... Nothing, my Queen. I was just distracted."

"You don't like my name?"

"Not at all. Ah, I mean, that I have no objections to the name you have chosen for yourself, my Queen. Whatevra Wa'Nabe is a perfectly fine name. And certainly better than any number of other things you could have chosen to call yourself..."

"What was that, Humblebee? I didn't quite catch that."

"Nothing! Nothing!"

Author's Note:

Prereading and editing assistance for My Life As A Royal Changeling is provided by Spacebattles members Angelform, Baran3, Silver Storm Warden, & W34v3r.

Join our Patreon to remove these adverts!
Join our Patreon to remove these adverts!