• Published 4th Sep 2012
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My Little Behemoth: Friendship is more than Food - Kishin



Just because you're a 3-ton Changeling Behemoth doesn't mean that you can't have friends.

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Trial Run

Celestia slowly sat on her throne (shared throne, if one counted the sleeping Luna, hooves splayed out upon a throne seat adjacent to Celestia. Sleeping on the job, Lulu? Tsk tsk.) for the first time in.....well, 27 hours since the Royal Wedding. She never liked to stay away from work for too long, even if she DID injure herself while fighting the queen of a species of insectoid impersonators. It was the crack of morning, and after she had completed the tedious task of guiding a 875 thousand mile-wide ball of flaming gas across the horizon, she returned to the Canterlot castle and began yet another task: reviewing governmental reports.

Ignoring the "petite" snoring of her sister in the throne seat next to her's, she got down to businiess and had come across the occasional statements from the Equestrian Revenue Service (if there ever was a hell....), the usual complaints and requests from nobles, Treasury reports (turns out that the wedding was costlier than she could have imagined), and....a letter from Twilight Sparkle.

She absentmindedly tossed everything else into a small rubbish bin behind her throne, and began to open Twilight's letter, wondering why she didn't have Spike send the letter to her magically.

She skimmed over the letter.

Dear Princess Celestia,
I'm mighty sorry if you were expecting a letter from Twilight herself, but she insisted that I use her address and namesake to get this letter directly to you. Sweet Apple Acre is gettin' slightly short-handed right now, with Big Mac's broken hoof and all. So I've tried to put some of them "advertisements" in the newspaper to get some extra help 'round here, but nopony has arrived yet. I've tried every single gosh darn thing to reel in some help, and apple-buck season is getting closer and closer. As much as I hate to admit it, I won't be able to do everything by myself. If I can't supply enough apples this season, and if I'm not able ta pay my annual taxes to the ERS this year, I'm afraid that mah family is gonna be in some mighty deep trouble. Is there anything you can do to help? If you can't do anythang, I'll understand (being a Princess and all). But if you could loosen the noose around my neck, it would be much appreciated!

Thank you for everything!

-Applejack

As Celestia finished the letter, she felt troubled that one of her subjects, and a personal friend to both her and Twilight, was having a hard time in Equestria's present economic situation. Celestia was barely able to keep the New Yoke Stock Exchange running when the "Big Dipper" hit, but she was starting to grind against the curb when the recession started to creep in. She, and her fellow ponies, managed later on, but the farming community was hit the hardest by the new export and land taxes that her idiotic law counsel "brilliantly" thought of.

She would have loved to help, but any show of favoritism to anypony, even if they WERE the Element of Honesty, would send her entire kingdom reeling at her hypocrisy for not helping everpony else.

Well this starting to become a quite depressing morning. Now what to do....

A gruff voice of a Royal Day Watch Guard provided a distraction for her thoughts, "Princess, your prisoner is here for his punishment hearing."

Luna woke up with snort and uttered, "My moon pies!". The announcement had apparantly brought a quite unfortunate end to the pastry-related reverie during her slumber, and brought an endearing smile to her sister's face.

"Why hello sister! Mother of you, tis morning!" Luna shockingly realized.

The guard repeated, "Princess?"

Celestia replied, "Guard, I'm sorry. But let us begin."

Luna positioned herself correctly on her throne and cleared her throat.

A pair of Guards and a very large Changeling (the thing was quite larger in stature then even Luna) in chains marched into the room. They trotted to a stop in the middle of the royal throne room and bowed.

What was most curious was that the Changeling had also bowed, not in a scornful manner, but in one with quiet respect.

The guards rose and announced, "Princesses, your prisoner has arrived."

"Thank you," Celestia endearingly said. Her tone quickly changed into a cold pitch that would have frozen the sun, "What is your name, creature?"

The Changeling rumbled, "They call me Cyr, Princesses." He bowed again, his ancient joints creaked with the rise and fall of the shackles and chains around his holed hooves and neck.

Celestia mentally furrowed her brow. The fact that she had not detected even a hint of sarcasm or hate in its voice troubled her more.

"My sister was quite right. You are a most peculiar member of your species."

The Changeling thought for a moment and mystically returned, "So I have been told."

Luna stared at the orange eyes of the colossal insectoid, one of them still sporting the same injury on its visual receptors that she had inflicted during their struggle.

Luna telepathically started a conversation with her sister, "Tia, Doth thou think that the creature will cooperate with us?"

Celestia returned with a transfer of her own thoughts, "It would be wise if you would start using a lie-detection spell on it, Luna. I hope that the creature didn't injure you."

"Oh 'twas nothing. The brute simply pushed us around. Frankly I'm glad that no pony died because of it."

"I see you're getting use to modern Equestrian. You aren't using the Royal 'We' anymore."

"Celly! I'm surprised! Doth thou hath no faith in me?" Luna mentally teased. "I'll get on that spell right now."

They ended their telepathic tête-à-tête, and when Luna's horn began to glow, Celesita started again.

"You had trespassed on our kingdom with harmful intent, and proceeded to assist Queen Chrysalis with her plans to take over Equestria and steal the love of my little ponies for their consumption. You have committed acts of assault, battery, damage to private and government property, attempted murder of a Princess and a battalion of Royal Guards. And yet you have the audacity to arrive here with such calmness and neutral emotion. Are you mocking us? After everything you did to my subjects, you still do so?"

Celestia, in her fair share of interrogations and trials, had expected two events to occur: the violator would either start begging and sobbing for mercy, or would shout themselves hoarse of how much of a tyrant she was and the self-righteousness of their cause or reasons. But, surprisingly, neither had occurred.

Cyr responded to her tirade, "I have no intentions to mean any form of disrespect. I accept those charges and I await a sentence. But I meant no harm in my actions. I'm afraid I had no choice but to carry out Queen Chrysalis's scheme."

Luna interjected, "Thou assaulted my Guards and I when my fellow sister needed me! Thy actions speak louder than thou petty lies!"

Cyr asked, "So I was lying? What about that spell of yours?"

"Wha- How doth thou know?"

He patted his horn, "This thing does more than cast disillusionment and force-magnification spells. And in your conversation, you referred to me as an 'it'. Would you be so kind to note that I am indeed a male of my species."

Celestia whispered to Luna, "Was he actually lying about his intentions?"

Luna looked down and returned, "No...."

Celestia commanded her Guards abruptly, "Leave us!"

They balked, "But Princess!"

"Do you think that the prisoner couldn't have escaped already? I'm sure one of your comrades can describe how this creature is capable of tearing itself through buildings and our defenses with ease. We shall deal with him."

The guards hesitantly saluted, "Yes, Princess Celestia!"

They exited and shut the massive doors behind them.

It was the Changeling's turn to ask the questions.

"Why did you not let me perish? Why am I not dead?"

"It is not our way to let a being die, no matter how much it wronged others," said Celestia. "We have also hypothesized that you need love to continue your healing abilities, so I persuaded Princess Cadence to revive you with her magical ability. Why do you ask trivial things?

Cyr didn't answer. He stopped himself from saying anything but finally uttered, "Maybe my priorities didn't seem as clear to you as I had wanted them to be. You should have left me in the ruins of Canterlot. Perhaps I shouldn't have held back, and you would have considered me with more contempt if I had killed. Maybe then I wouldn't be here."

Luna whispered to her sister, "I have detected nothing yet, sister. Only truth."

Celestia could only ask, "You wanted to die?"

"Why not? I've lived a full life of 417 years. I've experienced many friendships and betrayals. I can only atone for what I have done to ponies and my fellow Changelings alike. And if I no longer live....."

Cyr had said enough. "I await my punishment."

Luna pushed on, "Thou hath finished thy defense? Very well. On accordance to Royal Order, I order thee, for thy crimes against the Equestrian royalty, to be beheaded, quartered, and thou head will be paraded throughout our fair city on a bloody pike roped with thy gory entrai-"

"Luna!" hissed Celestia. "Execution was forbidden over a thousand years ago!"

"Tis nothing but fair justice!" Luna pouted. "That beast ravaged our city, harmed our citizens, and stopped me from saving you from Chrysalis! It deserves nothing less than a cruel, painful demise."

"We...do not...kill, Luna!"

"Have thou seen the casualty reports?"

Cyr bursted, "Notice how they are titled 'casualty', not 'mortality' reports. I did not take any lives during my attacks. I did not provide your guards or citizens with injuries that may have been permanently harmful to their health."

"Luna, quiet!" Celestia warned. "And how do we know that your intentions were purely philantrophic? You may have managed to counter Luna's lie-detection spell with your horn. You already have the ability to listen to telepathic conversations, so do not be offended when I say that we simply cannot trust you."

"Then hopefully my execution shall be swift. I am nothing but chitin and memories now."

Celestia, with every pore of her being would liked to see the creature suffer for its evil-doings, but what if it was right? What if it indeed was forced to? How could she justify a punishment if they are experienced by an innocent being?

Celestia solemnly questioned, "You say you have your memories? You wouldn't mind if......they were collected. For our archives. We have yet to understand Changeling Hive structure and its evolution since their Diaspora from Equestria."

She could sense with her magic the internal disputes of Cyr's mind. At first he decided to hesitantly evade and disagree to it, but a rebellious spirit against the Queen repelled the thought, and had constituted his answer.

And a rumble from Cyr's jaws emerged.

"So be it"