• Published 28th Nov 2019
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The Dragonfly Hive - Silver Dragon Blade Wing



A young Changeling Prince, with the help of his allies and friends, must become strong enough to challenge and defeat Chrysalis to protect the land and the ones he loves.

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Hive 3

The Next Morning

Dragonfly got off his bed and looked around as he stretched his limbs, while is room was still mostly empty other than what was there before the head of the Earth Pony Armor Golem sat on his shelf next to the photo album. Dragonfly hadn't known at the time but the Drones had collected it and had placed it their after they got back, as a reminder of his very first "Boss Battle" as they others called it. Picking up an apple he began munching when he heard a knock behind his banner door.

"Dragonfly, you up?"

"Yes Seeker, come in."

The Advisor Changeling did and walked up as Dragonfly finished his apple.

"So what do you need?" The Royal asked wiping some left-over juice from his mouth.

"Well first the Founders are settling in nicely, Platinum said our Changelings were perfect gentlecolts and mares to her and the others. Darter also wants to talk to you in the Archives now that they've been cleared out and are ready for use, something about special breeds and other things. Oh, and Hurricane and Platinum wanted to talk to you."

"What about, and where are they?"

"I don't know, they just said they wanted to talk to you. Hurricane and Pansy are with Rhino in the Hive chambers, Platinum is in the Throne Room, Clover's looking for the Archives, and Smart Cookie and Puddinghead are in the Egg Chamber."

"Alright, I'll go see what they want."

The two of them left and went their separate ways, Dragonfly going to talk to Hurricane who was in the Hive Chambers while Seeker headed back to the Throne Room. Entering the Hive Chambers he saw Rhino and Hurricane chatting like old friends, both were looking at the Hive Breed Interface occasionally pointing at it. Pansy sitting off to the side, just watching. Their ears perked and they turned their heads around as Dragonfly walked up.

"Morning Dragonfly." They both said, Pansy gave a small wave.

"Morning guys, glad to see you two getting along so well. What are you up to?"

"Hurricane here was giving me some ideas on upgrades for some of the breeds, along with some things I hadn't though of." Rhino said.

"I figured since I might be staying here for the foreseeable future I though I should help out where I can." Hurricane said.

"Seems you are fitting in nicely, Seeker told me you wanted to talk to me about something?"

Hurricane nodded and lead Dragonfly over to the far side of the room.

"So what did you want to say Hurricane?"

"I've been thinking about how much time has passed since we were frozen, things aren't the same as it was a thousand years ago. Equestria is at peace with its neighbors so I'm not entirely sure if it does has a place for an old soldier like me, so would you be alright with me staying here for the long term and help Rhino train your Changelings along with Pansy? I know you said that me and the others can stay here for as long as we want but I feel like I needed to be sure"

"Of course Hurricane, we will have to face Chrysalis one day and having somecreature who knows her fighting style would be great, and I'm positive that Rhino would love to have other military creatures to talk too. As I said last night; You're welcome to stay here as long as you like, your Mares are as well."

Hurricane smiled and placed a hoof on Dragonfly's shoulder.

"Thanks lad," taking his hoof off he continued, "if you don't mind me asking, who was your father?"

"A Winged Thestral by the name of Black Saber, he's a Royal Knight. Or was as he and mom disappeared three ago."

"A Thestral huh? I've fought along side Thestrals before, they're very capable and very loyal fighters, second only to Kirin. What happened to them after Luna turned into Nightmare Moon?"

"After she was banished to the moon the Thestrals fled, fearing that they would be hunted down due to the fear around them, which only increased after Nightmare Moon. I'm not sure the exact date but eventually Celestia found them and they came back, though outside of their home the Hollows and the Guard they are a bit rare."

"Well I'm glad to hear they weren't wiped out, back in my time they weren't very liked at all because of they're nature."

"They're much more accepted today thanks to Celestia but there are still some who don't like them, thankfully those ones are few and they're only really found among the Nobles."

Hurricane snorted, "Why am I not surprised, though that's Platinum's turf, not mine."

Dragonfly smiled, "Hated having to deal with them?"

"In a word: Yes. There were plenty of times I had wanted to knock a few heads in, how Platy manged to deal with them every day is beyond me. She actually had to hold me back a few times."

"You and dad would have most likely gotten along very well, he to hated most of the Nobles. There were a few he respected and got along with but they were in single digits. By the is something wrong with Pansy?"

"No, she's just very shy around those she doesn't know very well, a bit of a quirk from her foalhood."

Dragonfly nodded his head in understanding, the two of them talked for a few more minutes than walked back over to Rhino, Dragonfly looking at the Hive Breed Interface for the upgrades and traits for the new units.


Hive Spider Upgrades

Web Cable

A few small changes to the Hive Spider's abdomen would allow them to fire a single rope-like strain that would be able allow the spider to pull things towards it in a similar way to the Bola Spider, this could be used to grab objects that would be out of reach, pull enemies out of cover, and even help allies across large gaps.

Effects: Ability unlocked: Web Cable, This allows it to pull allies to safety, or pull enemy units out of position. The ability can pull units up and down cliffs and enemy units are unable to attack while pulled.

Symbiosis

The Lesserblack Tarantula lives peacefully with the Dotted Humming Frog in a mutualistic relationship; The tarantula provides the frog protection from predators and a food source from insects feeding on the remains of its prey. The frog's foraging protects the tarantula's eggs from ants. Wild Hive Spiders have a similar relationship with the creature referred to as the "Changeling Toad", a species of small toad around the size of a Pony foal. By raising our own the mutualistic relationship between the two would be the same and we would get extra protection for our own young.

Effects: Each Hive Spider gains a group of five Changeling Toads that protect it's eggs and serve as extra eyes on the battlefield.

Hive Spider Traits

Charged Webs

Hive Spider webs, while great at slowing enemies, do not last very long and their stun effect wears off the moment the web does. So by running a light electrical charge through the web, we would increase the stun effect to at least double its life span.

Effects: Stun from Hive Spider webs will continue after the web has dissolved, keeping targets down for longer.

Egg Pods

Wild Hive Spiders sometimes made small egg sacks that hatch tiny spiders that latch onto any targets in the impact zone, crawling over them and biting to inject tiny amounts of their venom which has a slowing effect though the spiders themselves have very short lifespans and they die and dissolve into nothingness. While the tiny spiders only live for a few minutes at best I think we can make use of them on the battlefield to draw attention from other units.

Effects: Ability Unlocked: Egg Pods, these small egg sacks are launched from the Hive Spider's mouth in an arc to a selected spot, once these pods break open any targets within that zone would suddenly find themselves covered in tiny spiders that start biting them. The venom grants a +5 slowness on them for 10 seconds and has a 25% chance to send them into a panic.

Web Cloud

By combining the Hive Spiders web with a special potion mix that it drinks before battle the spider would be able to launch a cloud of dissolving web that would give any units under it cover from air attacks.

Effects: Ability Unlocked: Web Cloud, provides immunity to all air attacks for 30 seconds but prevents the spider from launching its web for a full minute.

Soldier Upgrades

Chitin Plate

Soldiers have great armor by default but the addition of extra plates to certain areas would effectively double its durability.

Effects: +30 Armor.

Dragonfly Partner

Dragonflies have been common companions to Changelings for as long as recorded history, by breeding the giant Eight-Winged Dragonfly our Soldiers would gain a second set of eyes, a scout to detect stealth units, and a second attacker. These Dragonflies are equipped with a tiny pulse magic cannon that deals small amounts of damage.

Effect: Dragonfly Companion: Eight-Winged Dragonflies that follow each Soldier in a squad, gives a +15 sight radius and 10% detection radius. Weapon deals 5% magic damage.

(This upgrade is not a pun on your name Dragonfly, I swear.)

Soldier Traits

E-Energy Stimpack

A small needle filled with supercharged Emotional Energy that massively boosts a Soldier's attack and movement speed along with their defense but comes at the cost of damaging them with each use, while having Healers around renders this moot for safety reasons Soldiers will only carry one per battle

Effects: Ability Unlock: +50 Attack and Movement speed, Defense and Magic Defense but each use deals -15 self damage.

Combat Shield

A basic tower shield made from forged chitin and cooled with slime and attached to a special crystal mounted on the Soldier's back increases their defense while allowing them to focus on other things. The shield's mounting point also give the Soldier more armor.

Effects: Shield grants +20 Defense and Magic Defense and +10 Armor

Improvement Kits

Soldiers carry weapon kits allowing them to counter different enemies, by giving these kits new upgrades we would increase their effectiveness on the field. Note that each weapon has a different effect.

Shields Effect without kit: +30 Magic Defense and +15 defense. With kit: +45 Magic Defense and +30 defense.

Crossbows Effect without kit: +20 Range. With kit: Five bolt types unlocked: Stun, Regular, Armor Piercing, Fire, and Explosive.

Heavier Armor Effect without kit: +20 Defense and -5 speed. With kit: + 30 Defense and -10 speed.

Blast Sphere Launcher Effect without kit: Single-Shot with Regular, High Explosive, and Cluster Spheres. With kit: Six-Shot with the same shot types plus goo and stun spheres.

Weapons Team Upgrades

Quick-Deploy Tripod

Modifications to the weapon's tripod would allow the team to deploy their weapon faster, meaning they would be able to attack targets and/or move in half the time.

Effects: -50 Setup time.

Weapon Shield

By installing a E-Energy powered crystal to the weapon we would be able to create a half-dome shield that would grant the members of the Weapons Team better protection.

Effects: +20 Defense and Magic Defense.

Weapons Team Traits

Ambush Camouflage

Weapon Teams often have to stay in one place in order to use their weapons properly, which can leave them vulnerable to enemies. By giving them special cloaks we can allow them to stay hidden until the right moment, surprising enemies and granting the Weapons Team a "First Shot" Bonus."

Effects: Ability Unlocked: Ambush, passively shrouds the Weapons Team in a cloaking field that keeps them hidden from detection until they attack or an enemy gets to close, Ambush also grants a "First Shot" Bonus that deals double the damage for the first minute.

Guard Drones

Weapons Teams are generally defenseless when their weapons are packed up, by giving them four Drones as guards their survivability on the field.

Effects: Four Drones protect the Weapons Team from enemies, these Drones benefits from the regular Drone Upgrades and Traits.

Weapon Kits.

These work the same way as the Soldier's Improvement Kits.

Chitin Launcher without Kit: Small Suppression Field. With Kit: Larger field with charged rounds that deal double damage.

Crystal Beam without kit: High Armor Piercing. With Kit: Faster rate-of-fire and supercharged beam.

Magic Pulsar without kit: Large blast radius with small stun and knockback. With Kit: Added armor stripping with more powerful projectile.

Shell Slinger without kit: Single barrel able to launch Regular, High Explosive, fire, and Cluster Shells. With Kit: Quad-Barrels with greater range.

Berseker Upgrades

Berseker Armor

Bersekers are tough creatures, so armor may seem unnecessary. However, I've learned from long experience while working for Empress Nebula that "unnecessary" can sometimes end with many dead. I've seen many a Changeling fall due too them thinking that extra armor was "unnecessary". On the battlefield it is better to have extra armor and come back alive than not have it and not come back at all. The fact the armor gives the Berseker some form of defense against magic is also a plus.

Effects: 25+ Armor and +15 Magic Defense.

Booster Pack

A harness with a special E-Energy mix delivered into the Berseker's bloodstream through surgically attached tubes would allow the Berseker, if in extreme danger, to quickly recover from most wounds as well as increasing their Endurance, Armor, and Defense for a short time.

Effects: Ability Unlocked: Surge Boost, grants +15 Endurance, +20 Armor, +10 Healing Rate, and +15 Defense for a short time.

Berseker Traits

Ultra-Dense Carapace

With E-Energy mixed with certain magic spells injected to the right spots we could make the carapace of the Berseker almost invulnerable to most forms of damage. Some magic spells, like those involving fire, would still harm the Berseker and weaken the carapace enough for other attacks to deal damage.

Effects: The Berseker's carapace becomes immune to most attacks, only certain magic abilities, like fire spells and very powerful ones, will have any effect.

Slime Spit

By carefully altering the slime producing glands the Berseker would be able to fire a large gob of slime that acts as a constrictive agent. As newer layers are added with each attack, the old layers harden and tighten thus debilitating the target, Leaving them more vulnerable to attack.

Effects: Ability Unlocked: Slowing Smile, passive ability that allows each hit with a slime gob to slow the target down by 20%.

Supercharged Crystals

By grafting E-Energy-charged crystals to the Berseker's carapace it would be able to trigger a powerful surge of energy that would greatly increase its Speed, Heal Rate, and Magic Defense. However, there is a small chance the Berseker loses its mind for a few moments, in this case it wouldn't be able to tell between friend or foe and would attack anything near it until the effects wear off. Thankfully this would only last for about ten seconds. Still, use with caution.

Effects: Ability Unlocked: Supercharge, when activated the Berseker gains +30 Speed, +25 Health Regen, and +50 Magic Defense but has a 15% chance risk of losing its mind for ten seconds and attacking anything around it, regardless of if it is friend or foe and this cannot be interrupted until the effects wear off.


Dragonfly pulled back and looked at Rhino and Hurricane.

"Glad to see you guys have been busy, get up the good work."

"Thanks Dragonfly," Rhino said while Hurricane smiled, the former continued. "By the way, a Variant Mission has come up for the Soldier."

"Really?"

"Yes, but I need to go through a few things first before its ready."

"Alright, I'm headed down to the Throne Room. Before I go, I'd like to ask you something Rhino."

"Sure, what is it?"

"Didn't we once have a breed called the Supercharged Berserker?"

"We did, but I removed it as they would just be a liability. Supercharged Berserkers, while powerful, had to be kept in Stasis Cocoons as they were a danger to the Hive. So I removed them from our Breed List and turned their ability into a Trait for our regular Berserkers."

"Oh, that makes sense, okay I'll talk to you guys later."

"Later."

"See you then Dragonfly."

Dragonfly left giving Pansy a nod as he passed her, the Pegasus returning the nod. Dragonfly walked through the passages of the Hive, watching as Workers and Drones moved about. So far the Hive had a total of two hundred Changelings, Nebula had left more eggs than they had first thought and Spotter had been wrong about having to up the power levels on the Hive's Heart, turns out they wouldn't need to until they had a thousand Changelings first. Dragonfly reached the Throne Room and saw Seeker speaking with Platinum about something, he walked towards them, the two looking towards him as he approached.

"Morning Dragonfly, Seeker and I were just discussing what has changed over the years we were frozen."

"Morning Platinum, I trust my Changelings have been treating you well."

"They have indeed, prefect gentlecolts."

"Good to hear that, Seeker here said you wanted to talk to me about something."

"A few things actually, first; Seeker was telling me about your lessons in the political fields." Said Changeling spoke up.

"Since you're a Royal Dragonfly you may eventually need to met with other leaders at some point, so knowing the ins and outs of how politics work should something like that happen."

"I can understand that Seeker, while I hate politics with a burning passion I do understand why I would need them. Would want to end up in something nasty now would I."

"Well, I was wondering if I could help out on those lessons? As a former Princess I would be able to help show you the ropes along with what Seeker knows."

"I'd be glad for the help Platinum, the more I know on that front the better. What else did you want to ask?"

"Then I'll be glad to teach you alongside Seeker, the other thing I wanted to ask is since my companions and I are staying for the long term, do you intend for us to say in the Hive?"

"No, that would be just cruel to keep you guys here all the time, Spotter is working on a bracelet that will allow you and you companions to use a form of our Disguise Ability."

Platinum's eyebrows shot up as a surprised look came over her face.

"Really? How would that work?"

Dragonfly gestured for Seeker to speak.

"These bracelets would be enchanted to allow you and your companions to change your colors and Cutie Marks, at least on the surface, therefor allowing you to walk among today's Ponies without any of them knowing." Platinum thought about this for a second than smiled.

"Us going incognito? Just like old times, back in the day when we wanted a break for our work we would do just that. Though... does the changed Cutie Marks effect anything?" Seeker answered.

"No, the changed marks do change but they stay close enough to your real one that your special talent remains unchanged."

"Okay good to know, Dragonfly, the last thing I wanted to ask was about adding some decorations. As I mentioned last night, this place, while impressive, is rather plain."

"Like I said before, we haven't been here that long, but I understand your point." He turned to Seeker. "Remind me, how do we unlock customization options?"

"By visiting different locations, like Ponyville or Canterlot, and by interacting with certain Creatures who may give an item to us. From there the Hive will "scan" the item and unlock new options." Platinum reached up and undid the clip on her cape.

"Would this work?" She asked holding it out, Dragonfly saw her Cutie Mark which was a bar of Platinum with six purple gems around it. Before Seeker could answer Dragonfly suddenly flinched as he felt a strong and very strange energy surge through his horn.

Everfree City customization options unlocked

Dragonfly rubbed his horn, looking at Seeker and explaining what just happened.

"Yes, that would work. You can put your cape back on Platinum."

"So now that that's done, I'll go take a look after I visit the Archives. Also Seeker I need to ask you something."

Platinum bid them good day as she left to head up to the Egg Chamber, saying she wanted to see the Nymphs, as Seeker turned to Dragonfly.

"What did you want to ask?"

"I was wondering about Changeling reproduction, how the Hive grows, and how many more of those "Egg layings" I have to go though."

"Well it works like this; All members of the Hive, regardless of their breed, are able to mate between a male and female and lay eggs, which in most cases will become Drones once they reach adulthood. Only a few breeds, like the Berserker, will have young like itself. All Changelings can also mate with a partner of another species, like Ponies and either have one of three offspring: A regular Changeling, a regular member of their partner's species, or a Hybrid."

"Okay, but what happens if the breed is bigger or smaller then their partner?"

"Well... our appearance isn't the only thing we can change."

Dragonfly blinked for a second, then promptly shook his head.

"A little too much information Seeker."

"Well you did ask. As for the egg laying, generally a Royal will have four egg clutches depending on the number of current Changelings, the amount of E-Energy, and how healthy the Royal is. I should mention that as a Royal, when you pick a mate your first offspring will always be a Royal as well, regardless of you partner and their species."

"I kind of figured that, it's that way so the Hive will always have a Royal in case something happens. Though do I need to find a mate?"

"No, another way to get another Royal is by giving a chosen Changeling something called "Royal Jelly". It's a special fluid produced in very small amounts from the Hive's current Royal, once the chosen Changeling, which has to be a Drone, don't ask why I have no idea on the matter, has swallowed some they enter a cocoon for a time. Transforming into a young Royal over about I'd say... two years, give or take, and eventually emerge as a new Young Royal ready to lead the Hive should the current one be unable to."

"I'm guessing that's a backup option."

"For the most part, especially if the Current Royal can't find a mate, though few have to pick that option. In most cases the Royal finds a mate either from another species or in their own Hive."

"Wouldn't that latter one be... well you know?"

"Actually no, Changelings can temporary alter their DNA enough to avoid that outcome. Changelings can also temporary change their gender if the situation calls for it, but they will default back after a time, though only after the egg is laid."

"Good to know, though that gender change sounds like it would be quite awkward. But I think I'll stick to finding a mate when I'm ready." Dragonfly didn't notice Seeker's smile.

"Well... if your unable to find a mate, I could always change my gender and you could mate with me." The smile Seeker had showed he was clearly joking, but Dragonfly didn't notice as he recoiled from the mental images before releasing a growl that would have sent a pack of Timber Wolves running with their tails between their legs. Seeker's smile dropped like a hot potato the second he heard it and he sank to the floor.

It was at that moment that Seeker knew, he'd bucked up.

"I was kidding!!!" He all but shouted as he rapidly backed away from the peeved Royal. "Yes that was a bad attempt at humor and we didn't need the mental images and please don't kill me!"

Dragonfly held his growl for a few more seconds than settled into a more neutral look.

"You really need to work on your humor Seeker, do you want to get hit over the head with a frying pan again?"

Said Changeling slowly stood up rapidly shaking his head.

"Didn't think so, anyway moving on; On the Royal Jelly, what would happen if a member of another species or a different breed ate some?"

"Well on the breeds they wouldn't have any effect, as for another species... the only one that I'm aware of to actually try Royal Jelly is your father after he came back from a difficult mission. After having some Saber said he felt rejuvenated, with all his stress and fatigue vanishing and feeling like he could move a mountain."

"So it restores stamina?"

"Couldn't tell you, Saber is the only one to try any as far as I know. It might have the same effect or it might be different for each individual, I honesty don't know."

"Okay, so that requires further testing. In regards to the egg laying, you said around four clutches right?"

"Yes, depending on a few different things."

"How long until I go through my next "laying", and well it be as painful as it was before?"

"I can't really say when you next one will be as it's a bit random but it shouldn't happen for awhile yet. As for the pain, only the first is painful, your body will be more use to it now so you will only feel minor pain on your second and afterwards there wouldn't be any pain."

"Good, I really don't think I could take that level again." Dragonfly shuddered at the memory, not wanting to go through that again. Seeker rubbed his head, also remembering.

"I think that's all the questions I have for now Seeker, I'm headed for the Archives."

"See you later Dragonfly, I need to see Rhino about something."


It took a bit for Dragonfly to find the Archives, on his way he came across Clover who was also looking for the Archives. They chanted as they walked with Clover asking if she could help out, Dragonfly told her that she would need to ask Darter first but he was sure that Darter would appreciate the help, as they finally reached the Archives they took in the room.

"Wow." Clover said looking around.

The Archives was a massive Heptagon-shaped room around the size of the library in Canterlot and went up seven floors. The Lobby took up the middle of the room with rows of bookshelves towards the edges, the levels above had balconies with bookshelves covering the walls from top to bottom with several staircases leading up each level. The books themselves had black covers with red and silver decorations.

In the center of the Lobby was a large desk the same shape of the room with raised dais with a projection crystal in the center, and spread around the Lobby were several tables with gel cushions around each. Darter was at the crystal looking at the projection with a hoof on his shin, he looked up as Dragonfly and Clover entered, hearing Clover's wow.

"Like it Clover?"

"I love it! Reminds me of the Library at the Castle of the Two Sisters."

"Well we Changelings are quite well read, and Empress Nebula Sheen, Dragonfly's mother, made sure we have everything we needed here."

As Clover looked around, Dragonfly walked up to Darter.

"Seems everything to be in order here Darter, good job."

"I do pride myself on my work, so I'm guessing you're here to know what the Archives are for?"

"Indeed I am, if you would please."

"The Archives is were you can find information on many different subjects like a normal library, everything we know of from the first Changeling to current times can be found here. All you need to do is find the book or books on the topic you want and start reading, the tables and cushions in the Lobby and on each level provide a nice place to sit and relax. This crystal here shows the "Special Upgrades and Breeds Screen", this has two "tech trees" have additional units and upgrades sperate from the rest of the Hive. Progression up through them is by accumulating "research points" which are gathered in missions through the collection of certain special items, an example of that would be the Hive Lore Cocoons you and Seeker found some time ago. Another one would be the Golem Core we brought back from the Everfree City. Here, take a look."

Dragonfly walked up to the screen as Darter stepped back, the screen had two vertical stripes with ten icons per stripe, five per side on each. He noticed the left stripe had four of its icons from the bottom lit up with the stripe glowing which was level with the icons and the right stripe was similar only with just two icons glowing, he looked over at Darter.

"The stripe on the left is for Hive Special Breeds and Upgrades while the Right one is for Other Species Special Breeds and Upgrades. The four glowing icons on the left are as follows: E-Energy Shards, which increases the speed and reflexes of all Breeds by 5%. Charged Chitin, which increases the armor of all Breeds by 5%. Burrow Node, which allows you or the other Leaders to summon a small group of reinforcements once per battle. And the E-Energy Filtering, which boosts efficiency and allows us to get 25% more E-Energy from sources, for example a Gatherer would bring 25% more E-Energy from a full load then normal.

The two glowing icons on the right are as follows: Chitin Turret, which is two Chitin Launchers twin-linked on a small body, this can be deployed on the battlefield as support but remember that these have limited ammo and retreat back into the ground once they run out. And Fortified Chitin, this infuses all Breeds carapace with strong fibers that increases their durability by 15%, these fibers also act as a conduit for healing spells, improving the effect of Healers."

Dragonfly nodded in understanding and asked how this thing worked, Darter continued.

"As we gather special items like the Hive Lore Cocoons and the Golem Core these bars will fill up, unlocking new icons as they reach those levels. For the time being we are only able to select one of the two icons on each level, for the other one we will need a Lore Keeper. Also note that the items we need for this are rare and can be very hard to find, which is why these options are separate from the rest of the Hive's Breeds and whatnot."

"Okay Darter, I'll hold off on making any decision on this for now, until I think it over. By the way, Clover here was wondering if she could help out in the Archives."

Said Pony had walked up to and sat next to Dragonfly when Darter was explaining things.

"Well sure, I'd be happy for the help. Plus I'll teach you Clover on this so when the Hive gets a proper Airforce I can focus on that as my work in the Archives takes up most of my time."

Clover smiled happily and said, "Thank you Darter, I wouldn't let you guys down." Dragonfly stood up.

"As much as I'd like to say and chat, I need to get back to the Cozy Rest. We were lucky it was Sunday yesterday, but now I need to open it for today, see you later."

"Later Dragonfly."

"See you later."

Dragonfly walked down to the Throne Room, stood in the center under the teleporter and activated it, disappearing in a flash of green.


Train to Ponyville from Canterlot.

Bluebelle smiled watching the scenery pass by, she always enjoyed leaving the city to see the country side. In true, while she and her family lived in Canterlot her parents had met in Ponyville and she had been born there, so Blue saw the cozy town as her hometown. She also preferred the town folks' friendly demeanor to the snobs of Canterlot. Now, that been said, there were Ponies there she got along with just fine besides her friends, among them being Fancy Pants, Fleur de Lis, and a few others. Most others in Canterlot she had problems with, for various reasons. Blue remembered that one time one of her dad's rivals tried to set her up in an arranged marriage, that didn't end well. As it turned out, Aunty Celestia had outlawed the practice a long time ago, Blue's family also had a lot of influence in Canterlot's politics and her father had used that influence to shame that rival.

It wasn't that her family were against her marrying, quite the opposite in fact, her family wanted her to chose on her own and to be happy in marriage. While several other political rivals had tried, they didn't get far. As much as Blue didn't like it, she knew how to use her beauty to her advantage and to manipulate the Nobles to get her way. She didn't like doing it, but it was a necessary evil. It also helped that she had good friends among the Royal Knights, some of who the Nobles would not dare mess with.

Shaking her head slightly she looked around the car she, her family, and two of her friends were riding in, her mother was knitting what looked like a shawl, her dad was reading one of his signed copies of Twilight Velvet's books, and her two friends Sparks and Blades were talking among themselves.

Sparks was an Earth Pony Mare with a royal blue coat contrasted nicely by a red mane and tail, green eyes, and a Cutie Mark of a large brass gear. She wore a pair of welding goggles on her forehead and a hardhat with a string of yellow, green, purple, and red Heatswarming lights wrapped around the hard hat and powered by an attached magic battery pack on the back of the hat.

Silver Blade was a Pegasus Mare with her Kirin parentage quite clear through her larger than normal Pegasus wings, the fingers of a Western Kirin on her front legs, horns from the same kind of Kirin, and the long tail of an Eastern Kirin in place of a regular Pony tail. Her coat was an emerald green with yellow mane, hair along the top of her tail, and thick tuft at the end of her tail. Her Cutie Mark was a pair of sliver broadswords with black handles crossed in an 'X' shape. Her fangs just barely stuck out from her upper lips. Blades wore two brown leather pouches on a brown leather belt over her chest and a long black and silver scarf wrapped around her neck. From what Blades had told Blue, scarves were something of a cultural thing for Kirin, regardless of their race, and any Kirin worth their salt wouldn't be caught without one.

Sparks was a tiny bit shorter than the average Mare by about two inchs, Blades stood about two heads taller than the average Stallion, shorter than most Kirin, making her the tallest of their group while Blue herself stood in between the average Mare and Fleur de Lis.

"Enjoying the ride there Blue?"

Blinking Blue looked over at Sparks and Blades, who were looking at her curiously, Sparks was the one who asked.

"Yes I am, it'll be nice to finally spend some time back in Ponyville away from the so called "Nobles"."

"I hear that one," Blades said, "and knowing Pinkie she already knows we are on our way."

Sure enough, as the train pulled into Ponyville Station and the passengers got off Blue's family and friends were greeted by the party planner herself, Blue getting one of Pinkie's hugs. Once Blue got out of the hug they greeted Pinkie and headed into town, BD and Gold split off for Town Hall, something about the Town Budget and why there was never enough for when it was needed. Blue and her friends when into town.

"So Blue, when you said to your brother "Back off Blueblood before I do something we're both going to regret." I couldn't believe it." Sparks was saying, Bluebelle laughed.

"Either could I, I mean I'm not vain but he really angered me that day when he ruined my coat and mane after the spa trip. I'm sure that if Aunty Celestia hadn't stopped us I would have beat him to a pulp. I like different colors but hot pink is not my color, took hours to get that paint out."

"Would have been an improvement to him, and if I remember didn't your parents force him to pay for the extra trip." Blades asked.

"Yea, and they grounded him for five mouths, keeping him under house arrest. My father even said and I quote "Blueblood, if you're going to act as a colt, you're going to get treated as one. Both your mother and I are sick and tired of your attitude." From what I understand, he made Blueblood sit in a corner for three hours."

"At least he got some punishment. I mean, I do respect Princess Celestia but her "off-hoof" method just doesn't work in cases like that." Blades said.

"Oh Faust don't even get me started on that, mom already give her the earful. I swear mom was somehow using the Royal Canterlot Voice, how is beyond me." Blue said with a shrug.

"Indeed, she scares me sometimes." Sparks said with a shudder.

"I know what you mean, I've never have my parents angry at me but I have seen more then enough in regards to my brother."

"Mind you Blue, you weren't that bad, even in your teen years. I mean, you're not miss perfect but the most rebellious thing I remember you doing was swimming all the time in your family's pool when your parents told you not too." Sparks said.

"Considering what they had to deal with during Bluebloods teens, that was perhaps a good thing. Plus I loving swimming, I find it helps me relax."

"Not to mention you look very hot in your red swimsuit." Blades said with a teasing smile, Sparks getting her own as Blue's face was covered in a large red blush.

"Stop that Blades! You know I'm straight!" Blue stammered out, Blades' smile just grew bigger.

"Are you sure. Then why haven't you found a nice Stallion yet?" Sparks asked, her own smile just as big.

"I told you before, all the nice ones in Canterlot are taken and the rest are ego filled pigs. Actually no, that's an insult to pigs, and I haven't found one yet because I haven't met one that would love me for being me, not for my tilde, wreath or other such things. I want a Stallion who wouldn't keep me as a trophy wife, I want one that would genuinely love me for who I am. I swear, you two are just as bad as Ros-Ooff!"

Blue's rant was cut of when she bumped into a Unicorn Stallion coming from the other way with his nose in a book, both Ponies were knocked onto their rumps rubbing their heads from the hit. The Stallion recovered first.

"Sorry miss, I wasn't paying attention."

"It's okay, I wasn't eit...her."

"Are you ok...ay."

Both trailed off as they looked at each other for the first time, taking in each other's appearance.

For Blue the taller then normal Stallion in front of her had a well toned body, while no beefcake, it was clear he took good care of himself. His beautiful coat was silver complemented by a long red mane and tail, his mane along the top of his head resembled three greatly enlarged teeth from a circular saw while the mane hanging from the back of his neck was braided into four long braids tied off at the ends with black mane ties that reached down to his chest. His tail was quite long and split into three "spikes" with the shortest one on top and the longest one on the bottom*, the bottom spike was angled to point towards the ground when he was standing. His eyes were red with the slit pupils that Thestrals are known for and his Cutie Mark was a black Dragonfly with six red wings.

Loosely worn around his neck was a long, wool red and silver scarf that matched his mane and coat respectively, at one of the ends a High Royal Order medal hung proudly.

For the Stallion the Mare in front of him had a toned body with a gorgeous pearl white coat with a long and beautiful strawberry blonde mane and tail that was closer to red and were very long, perhaps even longer than Fluttershy's, tied into a nicely coiffed ponytail with a large cornflower blue bow at the top and base, a second even larger bow was tied on the base of her tail. Her sapphire blue eyes had a comforting warmth in them and sparkled like gems, and her Cutie Mark was a bundle of hanging flowers with golden stems and every second flower sporting gold and blue petals on the outside.

Both of them stared at each other, lost in each others' eyes. Sparks and Blades watched the scene in front of them, unsure how to react. They had been ready to defend Bluebelle when the Stallion bumped into her but now saw that it wasn't needed, as the watched the two Ponies just stare at each other Sparks' face suddenly changed into a grin, leaning over to Blades she whispered.

"Are you thinking what I'm thinking?"

"That Blue just found her Stallion? Then yes."

After a few minutes both Ponies recover and the Stallion stood up.

"Sorry about that miss, I was to focused on my book." He offered a hoof to help her up.

"It's okay, I wasn't paying attention either." Blue grabbed the offered hoof and stood up.

"Hey, you're Princess Bluebelle right? My mother was a heavy supporter of the charities you run."

"Yep that's me, what is your name sir?"

"Oh how rude of me, My name's Dragonfly Wings."

Bluebelle's eyes widened at the name.

"Dragonfly Wings? Aren't you the son of Nebula Sheen?"

"Yes I am, you know her?"

"I do, she's an old friend of my family. Such a sweetheart, loved her mane and tail."

"Well, glad to meet a friend of her's, and who are your companions here?"

"Oh the Earth Pony is Sparky Gears, nicknamed Sparks, and the Pegasus/Kirin hybrid is Silver Blade, nicknamed Blades."

The two came over and chatted with Dragonfly, with him guessing Blades' parents by her appearance. As they talked Blue suddenly remembered something.

"Oh I forgot, Dragonfly?"

"Yes?"

"Aren't you the owner of the Cozy Rest tea shop?"

"Yes I am, it belonged to my mother and she gave it to me. Why?"

"My parents were wondering if you would be interested in some business deals, Nebula's tea was very popular at my parents meetings and parties, my dad would of course make sure the deals are fair."

"Well, I think I would be, but I want to hear all the details first. Where are they now?"

"At Town Hall, something about a meeting for the Town Budget and why there was never enough for when it was needed."

"Which means they might be there for awhile, in the mean time would you fair ladies like some tea over at my shop?"

"Sure Dragonfly, my parents will be head over there after their meeting so they can meet us there."

"I'm not much of a tea drinker but if you have other options I wouldn't mind." Blades said.

"I think I might have something you would like, what about you Sparky?"

"I wouldn't mind at all, and please call me Sparks, all my friends do."

"Okay, follow me."

The four Ponies headed to the Cozy Rest and entered, Dragonfly going behind the counter to get their orders ready. As he did this Bluebelle couldn't help but stare at his flanks as he walked, blushing a bit but keeping her gaze. Blades snickered.

"See something you like?" She whispered into Blue's ear. Said Pony snapped into a ramrod stance with a huge blush on her face as Sparks and Blades fell over laughing and Dragonfly peaking form the kitchen wondering what was going on.


*Pretty much like the mane and tail of my avatar picture, just with only the top part of the mane.

Author's Note:

So in this chapter Dragonfly takes a look at some more upgrades for unlocked units, learns a bit more about the Changeling species, learns about the Hive Archives, and meets Bluebelle.

Next Chapter will go over a bit on how the Hive customization options work, Dragonfly looking over his new abilities he unlocked by leveling up last chapter, the abilities of his Commanders, and the Soldier Variant Mission.

Also, I would love to hear your ideas in the comments for unit upgrades and traits when new units are introduced.

See you next time! :pinkiehappy: