• Published 14th Feb 2020
  • 3,695 Views, 494 Comments

What have I done to deserve this? - Cackling Moron



Every obstacle in the path of a Queen is the fault of some nefarious other party, and no fault of her own.

  • ...
5
 494
 3,695

---NOT LONG AFTER, BEHIND ENEMY LINES---

Author's Note:

Head trauma probably doesn't work like this but, you know, magic.

Once actually in the town, cunningly-disguised Chrysalis stuck to Richard like glue.

While she (with her cunning disguise, natural grace and effortless ability to slip into and out of anywhere she might want to) knew she wouldn’t attract undue attention, she was certain Richard would and that at any moment a mob of ponies would be descended to do something shortsighted and stupid to him, something she’d have to save him from.

He seemed utterly oblivious to this danger though and just kept walking briskly, clearly knowing where it was he was going.

To Chrysalis’s astonishment he got no more than one or two slightly puzzled looks, to which he always responded with a friendly wave, this apparently doing much to mollify whatever surprise might have been felt on seeing a big, bloodied, freakish alien just striding through town. As long as he was polite and well-meaning it seemed they were willing to give him the benefit of the doubt.

What was wrong with these creatures?! And why hadn’t she been able to conquer them yet if they were this dimwitted?! Gah!

Did at least show that he hadn’t been lying to her about the ease with which he could move about. Not that this made her feel any better.

A few turns later and the hospital loomed. The two of them entered, Chrysalis somehow managing to press herself more and more into him with every step taken.

“When we get back you’re going to pay for putting me through this…” She muttered up at him as they approached the hat-wearing pony (presumably some form of nurse) sitting behind the reception desk. Richard decided not to reply. Not the time.

That, and he’d have to clarify whether she meant being put through worrying about him (embarrassing for her to admit) or being put through going all shiny (also embarrassing). No need to do her like that. Not yet at least. Not the time.

“Hello,” he said to the nurse pony, who was doing some paperwork.

She looked up from the desk at where a face should have been and indeed would have been had Richard been a pony. As he wasn’t, she had to crane her neck a bit, at which point she saw his face and the blood on his face. Her eyes widened.

“Oh my, what-”

“No questions!” Pony-Chrysalis shouted, ramming a hoof in the nurse’s direction before pointing it up at Richard. “Just fix him!”

“Um…”

For one thing, the nurse was quite taken aback by this mare’s sudden, loud rudeness. For another, she kind of needed more to go on than that.

Memories of ‘please treat our staff with respect or we will set the police on you’ signs dancing through his head, Richard leaned on the desk to draw the pony’s attention back to him. This worked. He gave her his best ‘Silly me!’ sort of smile and rolled his eyes at his own misfortune.

“Was doing some DIY and a bit of the house fell on my head. Don’t I look the fool, eh? But yes, accident. Bit of a mess. Looks worse than it is.”

This seemed a story the nurse behind the desk had run into before, who visibly relaxed.

“Ah, another one of those,” she said, now on familiar ground.

“Season for it?” Richard asked, quirking a blood-crusted eyebrow.

“Like you wouldn’t believe. We’ll have you fixed up in no time. Take a seat, somepony will be with you in just a second.”

Nodding a thank you Richard moved into the waiting area, there to take a seat among a handful of ponies who all appeared to be sporting similar minor injures to himself. Clearly was the season for it. Chrysalis took the seat next to his though took it so closely she might as well have been in his seat. She also eyed everyone suspiciously. This was hostile territory, after all.

“How do you do that?” She asked him quietly once it was apparent or at least unlikely that anything bad was going to happen. She asked while also wrapping herself around his arm, in case he had any funny ideas.

“Do what?”

Chrysalis nodded towards the nurse at the desk, who’d gone back to filling in endless forms.

“You got what you wanted to happen without any fuss!” Chrysalis said. Richard shrugged.

“Charm,” he said.

She butted him with her head and growled.

“That wasn’t an answer last time and it’s not an answer this time!”

He would have found this kind of thing endearing even if she hadn’t been pony-shaped at the time, but since she was it really added a little extra something and just pushed her into outright adorable territory, at least as far as Richard was concerned. He’d fully admit to bias, though.

He gave her question a little more thought.

“Being friendly and having a sense of humour can often yield surprising results,” he said, once the thoughts had run their course. Chrysalis just growled again, this time in disgust more than irritation.

“Ugh, you sound like one of them. Are you sure you’re actually not from here?” She asked.

“Pretty sure. Anyway, aren’t you supposed to be all friendly now, now that, you know…?”

Her eyes widened and she immediately released his arm, scooting as far away as her seat would allow.

“No! It doesn’t work like that! I don’t think,” she said, experiencing a sudden and dizzying stab of doubt. Most unusual for her, but then what wasn’t right then?

She honestly had no idea, either. She hoped it didn’t work like that. If she was going to have to deal with this every day from now on - all this feeling oddly warm and fuzzy and getting a lurch right in her gut anytime she looked at Richard and he looked back - she didn’t know what she was going to do.

Maybe she was dying…

...probably not. None of the traitors did. Urgh. How was she meant to conquer the world in this condition?

Without really thinking about it she scooted back towards Richard and wrapped around his arm again.

“You will pay for this, Richard,” she said, just so he knew she wasn’t messing around.

“Deservedly so, your majesty,” he said.

“I’m so angry with you,” she then said, which was just a bald-faced lie. She wanted to be angry with him and knew she should be as it was the correct thing to be, she just couldn’t manage it. It wouldn’t come. Normally it came so easily! Normally it was more a case of reining the anger in so she could think clearly! Now there wasn’t any to be found!

Lots of other, lesser feelings, but no anger. Not real anger at anyrate. Nothing she could use.

What had he done to her?!

“The doctor will see you now,” the nurse said pleasantly, appearing apparently out of thin air, leading to Richard realising that the waiting area had emptied of all the ponies who’d been there before him and that it was, indeed, his turn.

The nurse led the way, and Richard was duly taken to a room with a doctor in it. Chrysalis was his shadow. In the room, apart from the doctor, was one of those padded not-a-bed things that you sometimes found in GP’s offices. It was scaled for ponies, sadly.

Richard perched as best he could while Chrysalis hopped up to sit right beside him, earning herself a bemused look from the doctor before they transferred their attention to the actual patient.

“Another home improvement related injury?” The doctor asked. She didn’t even have to check first, she just knew by sight alone. Or in this case believed the line by sight alone. Richard shrugged apologetically.

“Sorry to say.”

The doctor’s face hardened and she raised a hoof of rage against the heavens.

“It’s the silent killer! When will ponies learn! Or whatever you are,” she said, adding the last part on further consideration.

“Human.”

The doctor nodded and hovered her clipboard over.

“I’ll note that down. Is that two o’s after the h?”

“It’s a ‘u’,” Richard said, getting a look from the doctor just to check he wasn’t pulling her leg. He wasn’t.

“Really? How perverse. Okay, let’s have a look at you...”

An examination followed. Not the most in-depth, but still fairly thorough. Lights were shone, heads looked at, wounds cleaned and dealt with, all that sort of thing. Chrysalis had to move a couple of times during this but always came right back beside Richard.

Overall, the impression was that there were not any immediate concerns, which could only be taken as a good sign. Richard was quite smug about this.

“Did say it wasn’t as bad as it looked,” he said as he got an incongruously long roll of bandages wrapped around his head. Chrysalis just looked sour.

“He’s not permanently damaged, is he?” She asked the doctor, not-at-all trusting their abilities.

“Just a scratch. Impressive scratch, but just a scratch. That said though…” the doctor said, finishing up with the bandaging before turning and quickly knocking about in a cupboard for something brightly coloured in a phial and handing it over to Richard.

“Drink this, should take the edge off the worst of things. Though if you do feel dizzy or anything like that you come straight back, understand?”

“Aye aye, doctor. This won’t kill me because I’m a freakish alien, will it?”

Good question.

“...we’ll find out?”

“Alright. Bottoms up,” Richard said gamely and before Chrysalis could intervene he’d gone right ahead. His cavalier attitude towards his own wellbeing froze her rigid.

Glug glug.

A pause.

Nothing bad happened.

“Marvellous, still alive. And my headache feels better already!” Richard said, beaming, handing the phial back. Him being so breezy snapped Chrysalis back to her wits.

“Don’t do things like that! What if it had killed you?! What would I do then?!” She said loudly, standing up on her hind legs the better to get the loudness right into his ear. Richard winced.

“Oops, sorry. I’ll think next time,” he said. Chrysalis was shaking him by the shoulders again.

“Next time I’ll think for you!

“Your friend has a point,” the doctor said and Chrysalis rounded on her immediately, basically snarling:

“I am not his friend!”

Kind of soured the mood in the room, that one.

“More like a minder, really. How am I paying for this, by the way? Or am I? Can never remember my NI number, sorry,” Richard said, keeping things moving. Chrysalis and the doctor were equally nonplussed by this, though Chrysalis was the first one to pipe up about it.

“Stop making references only you understand,” she hissed.

“I thought that was rather a good one your maj- um, non-friend.”

Good save. Both of them froze with rictus grins to see what reaction this near-slip would get them. All it got them was an odder look from the doctor.

“I’ll, uh, I’ll be back in a second. Paperwork,” she said, beating a hasty retreat. Chrysalis waited until the sound of hoofsteps had quieted fully before jabbing Richard with her horn in the side. Gently, mind.

“You nearly gave us away!”

“Force of habit! I doubt she would have thought about it too much anyway. Could just be a pet name! Heh, kind of is…”

“You...you…”

Again, trying to be angry, again failing. All she could really feel when she looked at him was aggravating, overwhelming relief that he was apparently none the worse for wear. She just kept remembering the sight of him laid out, limp. The image was frozen in her mind and any time she seriously attempted to muster up some proper, regal fury the picture intruded and made it all melt away.

The feeling that had struck her on seeing him like. It had come from nowhere! And had completely taken her off-guard! And now he was talking and smiling again and anytime she felt like scolding him all she could dredge up was that feeling of being afraid he’d gone away for good.

Richard! Her Richard! Her prized, loyal, doting idiot. Her freakish and freakishly devoted alien servant! Good help was hard to find and he was...pretty good!

She had to be dying, there was no way feeling this way could be normal.

Sighing and groaning somehow at the same time she thunked against his arm, repeating this until he got the message through his freakish, alien skull and raised the arm in question and she could thunk properly and more finally into his side.

“Everything was going perfectly! Then you ruined it all,” she said, dolefully, pulling down his raised arm over her. She’d stopped questioning why she was doing these things she was doing. They just came to her now, sad reminders of the horrible fate that had befallen her.

“You still have that magical wotsit don’t you, your majesty?” He asked her, utterly failing to grasp how far things had moved on from that, which was why she was the one in charge and he did what he was told. She sighed again, more forcefully, so he got the message.

“That’s done. Need a new plan now.”

“Did it not work?” He asked, continuing to be dense. Chrysalis gritted her teeth.

It’s done, Richard. I need to find something new.”

“I am sure you already have something in mind, your majesty,” he said with a level of confidence that actually made her sort of fuzzy. Irritating. She looked up at him but made sure it was an angry look.

“When we get back you are going to make pancakes and you are going to keep making pancakes until I tell you to stop making pancakes. Then I will decide what I should do next. This has ruined all my plans, it’s thrown everything out. I hope you’re happy,” she said.

“Should we leave now, quietly?” He asked, not addressing any of that. Chrysalis shook her head.

“The doctor has to make doubly sure there isn’t any lasting damage! No repeat visits. Then we’ll leave,” she said. She’d already thought it through and while leaving now while no-one was watching would have been the smart call it was not the medically sound call. Unfortunately. He truly was the millstone around her neck.

Richard nodded at her wise chain of reasoning.

“Cunning, your majesty.”

Chrysalis’s ears then pricked up at the sound of approaching hooves.

“That’s two ponies,” she said, eyes narrowing.

“The nurse?” Richard suggested.

“No…” She said, gripping onto him.

It was neither the doctor nor the nurse, it was two others.

Starlight Richard recognised, the other, purple, bewinged one he didn’t, though something about her did kind of ring a bell. Like someone he’d seen or heard of more than once without really registering why they were important. Starlight just looked a little sheepish and worried, while the other one looked actively excited.

Both these expressions changed a second after they entered the room and saw that Richard was not alone.

“Oh, uh, hi,” Starlight said.

“Hello again,” Richard said cheerfully enough, waving with the hand not attached to the arm draped over pony-Chrysalis. The bewinged mystery pony waved back silently, still plainly excited though also plainly a little confounded to see that Richard wasn’t on his own.

Chrysalis the pony was looking daggers at the two new arrivals and breathing very hard and very heavily through her nose. It was alarming enough to draw Richard’s attention back down to her.

“Are you okay?” He asked.

“What. Do. You. Mean. Hello. Again?”

Oops. In retrospect Richard could see the issue here.

He genuinely hadn’t thought about that. He blamed the head wound.

“I’ll, uh - must have slipped my mind,” he said, yelping when she reached up and pulled him down by the collar, the better to hiss into his face:

You and I are going to have a very long and involved conversation about operational security later, RICHARD!

“We, uh, we didn’t know you’d have company,” Starlight said from the side, reminding Chrysalis that they themselves still had company. She didn’t let go of Richard’s collar though, nor did she spare the intruders any more than a sideways, angry glance.

“I made a friend,” Richard said, his nose squashed against faux-pony muzzle. Chrysalis snarled, so Richard amended: “I mean, I met a kindly stranger who can take me or leave me?”

You’re going to wish that chunk of ceiling had killed you..