• Published 2nd Feb 2013
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The Opera Phantom Discord - Alexandrite Ward



Fluttershy's father is captured by the villianous Discord, Phantom of the Opera! Can she save him while being pursued by the handsome and charming Prince Blueblood?

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Intentions

Intentions

"So…aren't you going to say anything?"

Fluttershy, who had been poking the food around on her dinner plate, looked up at her father, confusion in her eyes. "Say anything?" she repeated his words back at him.

Time Turner groaned and rolled his eyes. "About the rehearsal! I've been waiting to hear you tell me how things went…and I thought since you did not wish to talk when you arrived home, that it meant you were simply tired and it would wait for dinner…but…" he looked at the food on her plate which she had barely touched. A wave of concern washing over him and he reached out to grasp her hoof. "Fluttershy, what's troubling you?"

Startled by his question, Fluttershy simply pulled her hoof away. "Nothing is wrong…I…I'm just not very hungry to be honest," she mumbled, her eyes adverting his.

Time Turner watched her intently. "Are you not feeling well?"

Fluttershy's face scrunched up at the thought. "I confess, I have been feeling rather queasy, but I'm fine Papa, truly," she reached out to take his finished plate, but before she could even touch the dish, a bubbly servant mare burst forth, snatching the plates up herself.

"I'll take care of those mademoiselle!" she chirped, smiling as she took both Fluttershy's plate and that of her father's.

"Would mademoiselle care for something else perhaps?"

Fluttershy gave the mare a weak smile. "Thank you, Cherry Jubilee, but that won't be necessary." Fluttershy confessed she was not used to having servants wait upon her and was not exactly sure how to behave around them. Even when she was living in the Phantom's realm, she never thought of Rarity and the others as servants, but rather, friends. This was going to take some getting used to, not simply having a servant mare do all the cooking and cleaning, chores Fluttershy herself was used to doing, but living in such an extravagant place as this!

She remembered the day she and her father arrived to the Prince's guest flat, and how speechless they both were at the sheer size of the place. It was ten times larger than the tiny flat they had occupied all those months ago, with more rooms than she and her father would know what to do with.

Blueblood was extremely proud, he gave them what he called "the grand tour", showing them the different rooms; two lavish bedrooms, each larger than the chamber Discord had given her, and each possessing their own luxurious private bathrooms. There was a grand parlor for entertaining guests, a library, a small billiard room, and much to Fluttershy's surprise, a music room, complete with a beautiful pianoforte.

It was too much; there was no possible way she and her father would be able to repay the Prince for this sort of hospitality. Yet Blueblood insisted, reminding her that he was already paying the rent for such a place, and felt much better knowing it was being used than collecting dust. He also introduced them at that time to Cherry Jubilee, the servant mare who would be staying and tending to their every need. Time Turner shook the Prince's hoof heartily, thanking him over and over for his kindness and generosity. Fluttershy however could not share in her father's joy. What Blueblood was doing for them was extremely kind, but she could not help but feel his charity, even when it seemed quite genuine in its offer, had a price of some kind.

"So?" her father interrupted her thoughts. "Tell me about the rehearsal! I wish to hear how my daughter dazzled all those 'veterans of the theatre' with her voice," he grinned, thanking Cherry Jubilee as she poured him a small glass of brandy.

"There is not much to tell," Fluttershy murmured, still adverting her eyes from her father's gaze.

"Not much to tell?" he exclaimed. "Utter nonsense. I know you astounded them all with your voice, my dear."

Fluttershy sighed heavily. "Papa, please don't, I do not deserve so much flattery, especially…" her voice trailed off as memories of the day returned once more.

Her father's brows rose at her words. "Especially? What do you mean 'especially' Fluttershy?" he reached out once more and took her hooves into his. "Please…something is troubling you, I can see it…please tell me?"

She finally looked up into his eyes and smiled faintly back at him, squeezing his hooves in return. "My first 'performance' was not exactly my finest moment," she sighed. "Oh Papa…I don't know what I was thinking, I do not belong there, it's quite obvious…" Time Turner eyes narrowed with concern. "When I sang today, I…I was a complete mess. My nerves were in shambles, my pitch was off, and many of the lyrics I forgot–"

"But my dear, it was your first rehearsal. You…you make it sound as if you have been rehearsing for weeks, months even."

Fluttershy paled slightly at her father's words. "I…that is, I um…I simply wanted to fit in with the others," she lied. "Many of them have their lyrics memorized…" Fluttershy was a horrible liar, and she winced at how badly that had come out. However, her father simply shook his head, a tender smile creasing his face.

"Oh my dear, you must move at your own pace, and do what feels right, not what others are expecting." If only her father knew the whole truth, she thought; ah, but he would never believe her, or at least not easily.

"Do not be discouraged by your first rehearsal my dear," her father smiled, giving her hooves one last reassuring squeeze before releasing them. "It's quite natural to feel nervous in front of others, hence your stomach feeling uneasy," he grinned. "But I'm sure, despite your doubts, that you did astound them today. After all, the Prince believes so, therefore–"

Fluttershy's eyes went wide at her father's words. "W-w-what? How…w-what do you mean the Prince believes so? Did you…did the Prince speak with you?"

Time Turner nodded very proudly. "He did stop by around tea time. He wished to know how things were going here, if Cherry Jubilee was enough help for both of us, and if there was anything he could do further."

Fluttershy grimaced at this piece of news. "I hope that you told him we have far more than we could possibly need?"

Time Turner frowned slightly at his daughter's tone, but chose not to dwell on it. "I thanked him, of course, and did explain that you and I were doing quite well. I invited him to stay for tea, and during which he then proceeded to tell me all about how you dazzled the company with your singing."

Fluttershy inwardly groaned. "Oh Papa, he only heard me sing one song, one which I did struggle through," she admitted, a slight shiver running down her body as she recalled how difficult "Think of Me" had been. "I would hardly call that a fair review of my singing."

"Why are you so quick to harshly judge the Prince?" Time Turner asked, a deep frown settling across his face. "The stallion has shown us nothing but generosity and kindness, and yet you seem so determined to prove him to be a villain?"

"It's not that," Fluttershy groaned. "I…I am very grateful for all that the Prince has done for us, but…" she sighed. "I just…I can not help but feel that perhaps he is…expecting something, in return for his kindness."

Time Turner couldn't help but chuckle at this. "Oh my dear, I blame your mother's family for creating such a wariness of the upper classes in you."

Fluttershy lifted her chin, not pleased that her concerns were being laughed at. "I'm surprised you've forgotten how horrid they were to us, taking away our home, refusing to acknowledge my very existence, their own granddaughter and niece."

Time Turner shook his head and reached for her hoof once more. "I have not forgotten their cruelty, but your mother, a daughter of a Marquis, a mare who grew up amongst the wealthy and powerful, was a pony with a kind heart and a generous soul. Now why can not the Prince be the same sort of pony?"

Fluttershy did not care for where this conversation was heading. "The difference Papa, is that Mama was willing to set aside all those things to be with you, to start a new life with the pony she loved. I…I confess, I can not see the Prince doing such a thing…"

"Nonsense. The sad truth of the matter is that your mother had no choice. If she followed her heart, she would have to give up those things, as I could not enter her world," he murmured, somewhat sadly. There would always be a part of him that would never forgive himself for taking his beautiful wife away from a world of luxury. "But this is different," he continued, lifting his chin and forcing a smile. "The Prince does not have to make such a choice, you can enter his world and no one will think anything of it!"

"Papa!"Fluttershy gasped, shocked by what her father was saying.

"Oh Fluttershy, I only want what is best for you; a stallion who can give you everything you desire–"

She pulled her hoof away and stood up quickly. "I will choose what is best for me!"

Time Turner stared up at her, rather shocked by her cold behavior. "But he is a good stallion Fluttershy, can you not see that? He is a good stallion who I know would provide for you, protect you, and cherish you the way you should be cherished!

And I can tell that he lov–"

"ENOUGH!" Fluttershy shouted, her blood boiling with rage. She would not be made to feel like an auctioned item for the highest bidder. "I think I shall go to bed now," she muttered, turning on her heel to disappear into her room, yet before she managed to take a single step, Cherry Jubilee appeared, a broad smile beaming from her pretty face.

"The Prince," she announced, giving a small curtsy.

This cannot be happening, Fluttershy thought gloomily. Time Turner straightened up at the servant mare's announcement and grinned broadly as the hoofsome noblecolt entered the dining room, quickly removing his hat and elegantly bowing before them, a warm smile spreading across his hoofsome features. "Monsieur Time Turner, Mademoiselle," he greeted, his tone sharing the same warmth as his smile. "Forgive me for interrupting your meal, but I could not wait until tomorrow to deliver the news, I had to see you at once."

"Oh not at all, monsieur," Time Turner replied, his own face beaming with delight at the sight of the stallion. "Please, won't you sit down? It would be a great pleasure to have you join us." Fluttershy wanted to protest, but instead, forced a smile out of politeness' sake. She slowly seated herself back down in her chair, while Blueblood happily sat in a chair on her left.

"Thank you, monsieur, you are very kind, but I'm afraid I must decline. Sadly, I have a dinner engagement that I can not put off, however I do look forward to perhaps having both you, and your charming daughter," he added, grinning at Fluttershy, his emerald eyes sparkling, "as guests at my town house, before the week's end?" he asked, his eyes looking most hopeful as they focused entirely on Fluttershy.

Fluttershy felt a rush of color flood her cheeks, more out of embarrassment if anything. She prayed that her father was wrong; she did not exactly like the idea of the Prince being in love with her. Even love itself seemed to come with a price, where the Prince was concerned.

"Oh!" Time Turner grinned, his eyes also focusing on Fluttershy. "We would be most happy to accept!"

Fluttershy could feel her father's gaze upon her, knowing he wanted her to reply to the Prince's kind offer. However she chose to remain looking meek, in hopes that perhaps the Prince would stop staring at her as if she were a bug in a jar.

Time Turner could not help but show a little displeasure at his daughter's lack of response, but quickly reassured, "yes, we are very happy to accept such a kind, generous offer." Fluttershy winced at her father's words, knowing they were an attempt to make her feel ashamed for her silence and lack of trust towards the Prince.

Blueblood however didn't seem to take notice, he simply continued smiling and once more directed his attention at the old stallion. "I hope that you both are settling in well? I know that I asked this question of you earlier, but please, do let me know if there is anything I can do to help you both…anything at all, I truly wish for your stay here to be comfortable and see that you receive the best service."

Time Turner smiled but shook his head. "Does your compassion know no ends? You are too kind, monsieur, and I can't begin to thank you for everything that you have done already…but forgive me, you did say something about news? That you had news you wished to share?"

Fluttershy turned her head back towards Blueblood, curious to see what news he did indeed have that needed to be shared with them immediately.

Blueblood's grin broadened at Time Turner's words. "Well, after I visited you, monsieur, I felt an urgent need to return once more to the opera house, and so I did…and I called for a meeting with both the managers to discuss the sad order of events that took place prior to your…disappearance," he murmured gently.

Time Turner's face fell somewhat at these words. He had learned through both Fluttershy and Madame Luna during his recovery that Flam and Flim had him fired, believing his disappearance to be deliberate. Yet now, as the Prince spoke, a hopeful spark slowly began to come to life within him.

"Well," he continued, his smile not being able to conceal itself. "After carefully explaining the full details behind your…disappearance…"

Fluttershy's eyes went wide at this. Was Blueblood telling everypony about what happened to her and her father?
"…they both realized that your absence was truly out of your control, and therefore, have agreed to hire you once more, to play lead violin, in the orchestra," he beamed.

Both Fluttershy and her father stared wild-eyed at the Prince the second the words left his mouth. Neither one of them spoke, the shock was too great. Yet Fluttershy's father, while at a complete loss for words, began sobbing his joy, gripping Blueblood's hoof tightly and blubbering praises and words of thanks. "Oh monsieur…thank you…thank you! I…I don't know what to say…just…thank you!"

Fluttershy simply stared, her mind reeling at the news, her body rigid from the shock.

Did the Prince just tell them that he had convinced the managers of the Maris Opera House to rehire her father? Did the
Prince give them this beautiful luxurious flat? Did the Prince pay a large sum of money for her father's release from prison?

Did the Prince's charity know no bounds?

These were all wonderful things! So why couldn't Fluttershy share in her father's happiness?

"Fluttershy?"

She shook her head, waking herself from the questions that were plaguing her thoughts and turned to her father, who had been calling out her name. "Yes Papa?" He looked so happy; there were tears of joy streaming down his cheeks, and his smile was so radiant, so full of life. She should be grateful that the Prince could bring such happiness to her father… And yet she could not shake off the feeling that there was something dark and untrustworthy about the hoofsome noblecolt.

"I was simply saying how wonderful the Prince–"

"Please, monsieur," Blueblood smiled, attempting to look modest. "I believe formalities are no longer needed; call me Blueblood."

Time Turner beamed even more at this. Fluttershy couldn't help but frown.

"Blueblood has given so much to us…I do not know where we can even begin to repay him!" the old stallion smiled, reaching out and taking Fluttershy's hoof in his.

"Yes," she whispered, although there was genuine worry in her tone. How could they begin to repay the Prince for his…charity? And what sort of payment was he expecting?

Blueblood smiled at Time Turner, but his eyes were fixed on Fluttershy's pretty face. "Your thanks alone, is enough for me," he replied, his tone rich and warm, like a blanket on a cold winter night.

Fluttershy smiled faintly at his words, but her discomfort over the matter would not fade away.

Time Turner smiled, squeezing Fluttershy's hoof tenderly in his. "You are indeed a good stallion, monsieur," he murmured warmly, as his left hoof, which held Fluttershy's, slowly began to pull hers to his right, which held Blueblood's.

Fluttershy's frown deepened as she realized what her father was doing, and quickly wriggled her hoof free and stood up.

Her actions were so swift that the chair, in which she had been sitting, nearly toppled over. Both stallions looked at her in surprise, and Blueblood, out of gentlecoltly politeness, quickly rose to his feet, but a distinct look of confusion had clouded his hoofsome features.

"I…I beg your pardon…" she whispered, her eyes swiftly glancing back and forth between the two of them. "I do not feel particularly well…I think getting some sleep would be best, if you'll excuse me," she added, giving a quick curtsy before turning on her heel and swiftly walking to her bedroom. She did not wish to wait for either of them to reply.

Blueblood watched Fluttershy quickly slip away, his eyes narrowing slightly at her actions. Time Turner groaned before hanging his head in embarrassment. "I apologize for my daughter's behavior," he sighed. "Please do not think ill of her, she is simply…exhausted, I mean, today was very stressful for her, from what I understand–"

"It's alright, monsieur," Blueblood quickly interceded. "She has been through a great ordeal, that we must keep in mind."

Time Turner nodded his head, his eyes looking down at the table and his hooves gripping the edges. "Damn Phantom…damn beast!"

Blueblood could not help but smile at the old stallion's words. "Indeed…but do not worry, monsieur…everything will end as it should."

Fluttershy was leaning against the inside of her bedroom door, a shiver running down her spine as she heard the hate in her father's voice and the slightly sinister words from the Prince's throat. She wrapped her arms around herself, yearning for Discord's embrace, wondering if she would ever feel his arms again. She let out a sigh of relief as she heard Blueblood rise from the table and make his farewells. However the slight joy she was feeling at Blueblood's leaving quickly vanished as she imagined her father, pounding on the door, demanding an explanation for her behavior. Oh what did it matter? Somehow the Prince had won her father's love and respect; nothing she said would convince him that the stallion could not be trusted. She sighed again, only this time out of frustration, and sat down at the bedroom's dressing table, awaiting the inevitable knocking.

It had only been a glance, extremely brief. Her eyes floated upward to look at her reflection in the mirror, as one does when before one, not looking for anything, not really looking at herself, simply a reflex really. But in that brief moment, in that glance, she saw the flash of a black cloak and a white mask out of the corner of her eye, just outside her window.

Her eyes went wide at the sight, and instead of freezing in place, she whirled around, his name leaving her lips before she even realized what she was doing. "Discord?" She rose to her feet and dashed across the room, lifting the window and gripping the sill, looking out at the snow covered city streets of Maris, her eyes darting wildly, looking to both her left and right, trying to see where he had gone…

Nothing.

She saw and found nothing.

There were no prints on the tiny ledge that ran long her window; there was no sign of a black cape or anything that was a part of her beloved Discord. Absolutely nothing.

She had imagined it.

This realization hurt her more than any of the memories she had been having of the night she left Discord. For while those memories were indeed painful, here she had actually, for the briefest moment, believed he had been there, watching her, that he had found her and that perhaps, he truly did love her…

But it wasn't real, it was simply her imagination playing tricks on her, telling her what she wanted to see, what she wanted to believe…but none of it was real.

Fluttershy collapsed atop her bed, silent tears stinging her eyes. She was so tired; tired of mourning, tired of hoping, and tired of arguing with those around her. She curled herself into a tiny ball and pulled the blankets up over her head in hopes to create a personal sanctuary, a place where prying eyes, unkind whispers, and unwanted suitors could not find her. She cried herself to sleep; yet not once did she whimper or let out a sob. In truth, she was too exhausted. She had returned to a world of sunlight, fresh air, and people. She and her father were together again, and her dreams of singing on stage were finally coming true…

So why did she feel more alone now than ever before?

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Discord cursed himself for being clumsy and allowing her to see him. Had it not been for the stone pony that adorned the ledge above hers, he would not have been able to hoist himself up and away before she threw open the window.

Now was not the time for reunions, although he longed to hold her again desperately. It pained him to watch her look about for him, trying to find where he had gone, but he held himself back from swinging through her window and taking her then and there. If he so much as touched her, he would not be able to let her go, and although he dearly wanted to, he knew it would not be fair to the old pony who he had deeply wronged.

But after seeing her that day, singing his music on stage, he had to see her again; he could not wait until she returned the next day. He truly had believed that he would never see her face, that he would never hear her voice, except in his dreams. But when he realized that he was not dreaming, that she had indeed returned to the opera house…he truly learned then that he was completely addicted, that there was no cure for the ache he felt in his heart for her.

But there were a few unanswered questions that he had…many of which that involved Fluttershy's relationship with the Prince.

He was still trembling with anger after seeing the two of them talk so "intimately" in the shadows. And his suspicions continued to grow as he learned through the various gossip of the chorus that she was staying at the Prince's fashionable guest apartment. And it took every ounce of willpower to not kill a chorus wench that began spreading rumors that Fluttershy was sleeping with the Prince in order to sing the lead.

A satisfied smile spread across Discord's face as he remembered overturning a trunk filled with spiders and dead rats atop the vile mare's head.

But despite that moment of vengeful satisfaction, Discord's worst fears seemed to be coming true. Without telling the others, he took the black coach, pulling the collar of his cloak up to hide his face, and from a safe distance, slowly followed Fluttershy home. He recalled how his blood froze when he saw her enter an extremely fashionable building. And he swore he felt his heart stop when he climbed the building and saw the inside of the apartment that both she and her father occupied.

It was true. Fluttershy had accepted the Prince's so-called "kindness", and was staying in a place that belonged to the fop. By doing this, she was turning herself into the Prince's possession…a thought that caused Discord to crush the piece of stone that his right paw held.

A long, deep, primal growl, escaped his throat as he watched through narrowed slits of fire, the Prince exit the building.

He had been there, he had been with her, he had spoken to her…and perhaps he had even touched her.

Rage, unlike anything Discord had ever experienced, coursed through him, and without a second thought, he swung himself from the stone pony to another ledge, before easily dropping himself atop the Prince's moving carriage.

"What the devil–"

The carriage driver never finished his words; Discord punched him so hard that he lost all consciousness, before throwing the limp driver from his seat.

"What's going on up there?"

Discord growled even deeper as Blueblood's voice filled his ears. The sound of Blueblood tapping furiously against the carriage's ceiling made Discord want to reach in and beat the blonde fop to death. But without a word, he picked up the reigns and gave them a good smack, the horses quickly bolting from where they had been standing.

He could not help but grin as he heard the Prince fall backward and utter curses at the driver's name.
Killing him now would be too merciful, too simple–no, he had his own plans.

After regaining some composure, Blueblood sat and contemplated all that had gone on today. He thought things between him and Fluttershy were changing, that she was beginning to trust him. He grimaced at the memory of how she practically flinched when her father had attempted to join both his hoof and hers. What was wrong with the mare? After everything he had done for her, releasing her father, giving her a luxurious place to stay, seeing to it that she was able to sing on stage…good God, even calling himself a jackass for his behavior towards her all those months ago! He favored her above any other mares, could she not see that? What more did she want?

He muttered a curse under his breath and sighed deeply. He would just have to be more patient. After all, some progress was being made; she had at least accepted his offers. He just prayed that he would not have to wait much longer–he was not sure how many more days the Marquis Filthy Rich had left to live.

It occurred to Blueblood at that moment that he should be at his townhouse by now, and that the coach was traveling rather…faster than usual. What the devil was going on?

He looked out the carriage window and gasped when he noticed slums instead of townhouses, dirt instead of cobblestone, and paupers instead of aristocrats. "Joe!" he shouted, anger and confusion fueling through him. "Where the bloody hell have you taken us?"

He waited for his driver to respond, but there was nothing. Blueblood groaned and poked his head out from the carriage window, his walking stick ready to beat the driver should he not respond again. "Joe! Answer me, damn it, why–eeehgh!"

Blueblood did not even have the opportunity to gasp as he suddenly felt something scratchy and extremely tight wrap around his throat. His hooves flew to the rope that had mysteriously found its way around his neck, trying to tug at it and free himself, but the rope only grew tighter, causing Blueblood to gag for air.

"I do apologize, monsieur," came a dark, menacing voice, from behind a black hood. "But Joe needed to relieve himself…so I happily took over."

Blueblood could barely see anything; he was too busy trying to pull at the rope. Yet the voice sent chills down his spine; cold, sinister chills, that eerily seemed familiar…

"Now, to answer your question…" the voice continued, taking the end of the rope and pulling it tighter, causing the Prince to thrash and flail like a fish out of water. "You did ask me to take you home…and so that is what I have done. Now, you may not think this is your home, but that is where you are wrong, good monsieur," the voice explained, its tone dripping with sarcasm and malice. "You see, you truly do belong here…in the mud, in the slime, in the very cesspool of pony filth, for that is what you are, monsieur…absolute filth," the voice spat.

Blueblood gurgled something, the veins around his face looking ready to pop through his skin from the strain that the rope was causing.

"What was that?" the voice asked. "I'm sorry, it's very difficult to understand you, however I do consider myself quite good at reading one's thoughts. Let me see…no doubt you are cursing me, after all, I am trying to kill you," the voice sighed casually, tugging on the rope just a little more, causing Blueblood to gurgle even louder. "Or perhaps you were arguing with me, disagreeing with what I said about calling you filth." Blueblood attempted to lift his eyes to the hood where the dark voice was coming, his hooves flailing upward, hoping, just hoping, he could manage to throw the hood back…

"But I don't think it was either of those things," the voice murmured, dark and low, almost near his ear. "I think you were begging…begging for me to spare your miserable existence," it hissed. "But I already warned you, monsieur…several times as a matter of fact. I warned you stay away from the Maris Opera House, and I warned you to never touch–"

Blueblood swung his arms upward and gripped the edge of the hood, as well as something else, and pulled with all his might.

The voice immediately stopped talking, in fact, it released the rope that had been around the Prince's neck, and Blueblood crumpled to the ground, gasping and taking in great gulps of air.

A great indistinguishable curse tore through the night air, followed by the sound of horses and stallions shouting his name.

The figure who had been speaking to him had disappeared, and before Blueblood could pull himself up onto his feet, he was being surrounded by several police officers.

"Monsieur! Monsieur, are you alright?"

"We fired at the villain, monsieur, but he got away."

"Found your carriage driver out cold on the street. When he came to, he told us you had been kidnapped!"

"Somepony get me a knife! We need to cut this thing off him."

Blueblood could barely understand what was happening, but groaned with relief as he felt the rope being cut away from his neck.

"Best get you to a doctor, monsieur," one officer muttered, eyeing the rope that had been strung about the Prince's neck.

"Those welts are extremely nasty looking."

Blueblood pushed the stallions away as he slowly drew himself up, gripping the carriage door for support. "Joe!" he barked, his eyes somewhat glazed over by the shock of the whole evening.

The carriage driver timidly came forward, a massive bruise covering half his face. "Yes, monsieur?"

"Take me home,"Blueblood grumbled, pulling himself inside the carriage.

"But monsieur–"

"I SAID, TAKE ME HOME!" Blueblood bellowed, fire burning in his emerald gaze. The driver didn't need to be told twice, he quickly climbed to his place, took the reigns, and was already urging the horses at a quick trot in the direction of the Prince's townhouse.

"But monsieur! The villain! Did you get a look at him? Monsieur! MONSIEUR!" the officers' cries disappeared as the carriage drove further and further away.

Blueblood groaned and continued to take in deep gulps of air, never before relishing the gift of breathing as much as this moment. He looked down at his hooves, amazed to find the cloak that he had pulled off the stallion still clasped tightly within them. But there was something else…something heavier within the cloak. He recalled how when he had pulled at the stallion's hood, he had also felt something else. He grabbed at whatever he could, tugging, pulling, simply hoping to distract the villain long enough to release him. He pulled back the folds of the cloak to see what exactly he had managed to steal from the murderous bastard.

His eyes went wide at the sight. The question as to who had attempted to strangle him was now answered…
In his very hooves, Blueblood held the Phantom's mask.

Author's Note:

Enjoy! Especially you Spite :D