• Published 2nd Feb 2013
  • 17,872 Views, 1,033 Comments

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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The few days that followed the first day of work at the Maris Opera House went by in a blur. The countdown to the opening gala of the opera season was well underway. Every night, before going to bed, Fluttershy's father would play several movements from the opening opera for a minimum of two hours. While he played, Fluttershy would sit and hum along to the tune as she worked meticulously on repairing snared costumes for Fleur De Lis. She discovered that if she imagined herself in Fleur De Lis' place, she could repair the costumes with greater care, as opposed to wanting to make the snares worse.

Fluttershy's father was not blind; he noticed his daughter's great distaste for the star soprano. He often mentioned how he could speak with the managers, try to make things better, and when he learned about the burn on her arm, he threatened to tell the mare what he really thought of her and quit the orchestra! It took a good hour for Fluttershy to calm her father down and convince him that if he left now, they would surely become beggars in the street. And this city, like most, was not kind to beggars.

So the two would pass their evenings engrossed in their work, hoping that may bring some cheer to their situation. Her father would now and then plead for Fluttershy to sing Fleur De Lis' parts, which she refused on the first few occasions, but now, she could not help herself, she loved the role and the songs! One night, while her father played a movement, Fluttershy sprang to her hooves and began to twirl around the room, singing the song with all her heart, and acting the part of the character. Her father laughed at how his daughter would "ham" up the part, sometimes mimicking the awful acting skills of Fleur De Lis, and then he would clap and beg for more. Fluttershy blushed, but smiled, knowing that no matter what happened, whether she would ever have a chance to perform, her father always made her feel like a star.

It were these moments when it was just the two of them that Fluttershy cherished and looked forward to at the waking of each day. Indeed, while she was grateful for work, she was not always so eager to return to the Opera House every day.

Before her first day of work was over, Fluttershy's ears had been flooded with countless tales of the mysterious Opera Ghost, otherwise known as the Phantom of the Opera. She heard them first by a few stage hooves, grumbling over who would go fetch various props that were being kept below stage. They all complained about the Phantom and how they feared his wrath would bring an end to someone's life…again. Twilight and the other dance mares also had tales. They had been passed on by Cranky Doodle Donkey, the recently fired stage hoof who seemed to be the Opera's chief storyteller. It was through these mares that Fluttershy learned about the Phantom being a tall, thin, frightening black-caped figure that wore a mask and committed numerous acts of foul play.

While she had a somewhat wild imagination, Fluttershy attempted to not let her Gothic romantic sensibilities run ramped, and think realistically. After all, the stallion in charge of these fabrications was a drunkard, how dependent of a source could he be? However, it was harder for her to think this way after her father told her the wild rumor which other members of the orchestra were whispering; that Monsieur Caramel had been kidnapped by the infamous Phantom and most likely would never return…alive. Even the managers themselves seemed somewhat under the spell of this mysterious opera ghost.

Now Fluttershy understood the eerie sensations the Opera House made her feel. Yet no Phantom, be he a myth or a stallion, compared to the other, and slightly more eerie, uneasiness she felt at the Opera.

Not a day went by when she did not arrive for work to find Prince Blueblood waiting near the room where the costumes were kept. He was always polite and charming, bowing to her, smiling at her, filling her ears with compliments about how lovely she looked, and inquiring after her health and that of her father's. In return, Fluttershy would give a small curtsy, a small smile, thank the Prince for his kind words, and answer his questions with short replies. But she never fawned over him the way the dance mares did when they saw him, and she never attempted to make the conversation more than what it was. After their ritual greeting, she would get straight to work and ignore his presence…if she could.

Yes, it seemed that everyone, save for Madame Luna and Fancypants, were taken by the Prince's charm and handsome smile. The managers fell over themselves to please him, Fleur De Lis constantly flirted with the stallion, and the mares of the dance were in a constant state of giggles whenever he was present. He had even managed to charm her dearly beloved father.

One evening, Fluttershy's father asked her about the Prince. "He's a very handsome stallion, polite, charming, quite the gentlecolt. And he does seem to be taken with you, my dear," he said with a smile.

"Papa, he is simply being polite, I'm sure, tis nothing more," she grumbled over her needlework.

Yet her father would not hear it. He was a romantic, and because her mother came from a rich family, he did not see it as so inconceivable for a wealthy stallion to fall in love with a mare of little fortune, like her. Fluttershy knew her father meant well, but he made her feel like a charity project.

Truth be told, Fluttershy never found herself looking forward to seeing the Prince day in and day out. For the first two mornings, he simply greeted her as a gentlecolt would greet a mare on the street. Afterwards, he would eventually disappear and she would not see him again till the next day. But on the third occasion, he would not leave so easily. He would come and look over her shoulder at the work she was doing, complimenting her on her skills, filling her ears with more false flattery. Such praise made Fluttershy uneasy, for it was not praise being purely given, but praise that seemed to hold a ransom, as if now she owed him a compliment…or more, in return.

He would stay and loom over her till she made up an excuse that she had to go and find Fleur De Lis to see what she thought. That would normally get him to leave, and Fluttershy would then retreat somewhere private to get her work done. However, one day he would not leave; he remained and continued to loom, speaking pleasantly to her, but Fluttershy found herself growing more and more uneasy. She could feel his eyes upon her, and it made her feel violated, as if he were stripping away her gown and undergarments and exposing her with his eyes alone. She shivered, and he took this to mean she was cold. She jumped when she felt him wrapping his coat about her shoulders, and his hoof lingered somewhat too long.

Her hooves were being clumsy, tripping over themselves while she attempted to sew, due to the nervousness and discomfort she felt in this stallion's presence. And her theory was correct that the stallion was filling her with false compliments when he continued to flatter her after a very obvious stitching error.

She was working on a very elegant gown, made entirely out of white lace, when his presence alarmed her and she accidentally pricked the skin above her hoof. She gasped when the blood hit the fine fabric, knowing she would never hear the end of it from Fleur De Lis once the stain was discovered. It was a great pity, as she too loved this gown above all the other costumes. The Prince, confusing her distress for the gown with her distress over her prick, cried out her name, before grasping her tiny hoof in his.

"My dear, you've hurt yourself!"

"It's nothing," Fluttershy insisted, plastering a polite smile on her face, while at the same time attempting to wriggle her hoof free from his two.

"Nonsense, it could become infected! Come, let me help you."

"Monsieur, that is not necessarily, I-"

"I will not hear it, mademoiselle, come…I insist, I have just the thing that will help…" he was literally dragging her from her seat and out of the room. Fluttershy continued to try and free herself, but it seemed to be no use, the stallion was quite strong and it hurt the way he gripped her arm. "Ah, here we are," he said with a smile, leading her to a lounge just beyond the stairway that led to the private boxes which overlooked the stage.

Fluttershy had hoped that he would at last release her, but instead he more or less pushed her down onto a chaise lounge, while his other hoof reached for a bottle of wine which emerged from a small sack next to it. He smiled and opened the wine before dabbing a small amount onto a handkerchief and using it to dab her cut.

"Monsieur, that is not necessarily," Fluttershy protested. "As you can see, the blood has stopped and the wound is already closing-"

"Nonsense, one can never be too careful," he said in a patronizing tone, as if she were a small child who didn't know any better. "There, doesn't that feel better?" he asked, his hoof still gripping her arm rather possessively, while he warmly smiled at her. Despite that warmth, Fluttershy felt anything but better.

"Indeed monsieur, you are right, this has done me some good," she quickly reasoned, offering a small polite smile before quickly rising to her feet. "Thank you very much, now if you will excuse me-"

"Now just wait a moment," he said with a chuckle, while his hoof reached out and grasped her arm again, before pulling her back down beside him. "Not so fast my dear. Why the hurry?" he asked, before lounging back.

Fluttershy gave a small smile, but anyone could tell it was forced. "Tomorrow is the opening gala and I still have a great deal of work, it must get done-"

Prince Blueblood waved her worry off with his hoof, like a stallion waving away a pesky fly. "All in good time mademoiselle, all in good time, but first…let us celebrate," he said with a smile, before reaching into that small sack the wine had emerged from, and pulled out two glasses.

He had planned this. Why else would a gentlecolt of his leisure have brought wine and two glasses and then secretly hide them in…most likely his own private lounge?

She had to keep a cool head despite all this. "I do not understand what we have to celebrate, monsieur," she said curtly.

"Please, you may call me Blueblood," he said while pouring the wine, as if he were granting her a large favor. "And we have a great many things to celebrate! Why, the opening gala, your triumphs in costuming-"

"Monsieur-"

"Blueblood."

"MONSIEUR," she said with a little more force than she had planned, but knew it was necessary to get this stallion to understand. "Thank you, but no thank you…there will be no cause to celebrate anything if I do not get my work done." With that, she rose quickly to her feet and began to exit the lounge.

"I beg your pardon Fluttershy, but I thought you to be above such rude behavior."

She paused, his words intentionally made to prick her. She slowly turned her head, one eyebrow lifted. "Excuse me?"

He was grinning. "After all that I have done, you leave like this…I must say, it simply seems…ungrateful, if you ask me."

She couldn't believe she was hearing this. "Ungrateful?"

He nodded his head, lounging further back onto the chaise lounge, his arms stretching out along its rim. There was this smirk on his face that Fluttershy wanted to slap off. How dare he say such things to her! And how dare he presume that he could address her by her first name! They were not intimate friends or equals; how dare he use the power of his title to assume authority over her! Hot anger was boiling in her veins; his conceitedness was, heaven forbid, worse than Fleur De Lis'! "Monsieur," she said through clipped lips. "I do not believe I have ever been so gravely insulted in all my life. I must return at once."

Blueblood stared at her retreating figure, the smirk he had worn completely gone. Did that just happen? No mare had EVER refused him! He leapt to his hooves and in a matter of strides had his hoof on her shoulder and was turning her rapidly around to face him. "Insulted?" he quickly calmed his tone and forced a smile. "I am sorry my dear, I was only trying to make a joke, I did not mean-"

Fluttershy was able to shrug his hoof off her shoulder and twirl away, stomping back to the costume room. Blueblood stared at her, his mouth wide open. She had spurned him! She had turned away before he had even finished what he had to say…and spurned him! That ungrateful, spoiled, little-

"Monsieur Blueblood?"

Blueblood groaned at the sight of the dance mistress who appeared from nowhere. Fluttershy was getting away before he even had the opportunity to turn the mare around and give her a good harsh shake for insulting him. He watched as she walked further and further away, vowing then and now that he would have the mare, one way or another.

"Monsieur?"

He forced a smile and focused his attention on the matron standing before him. "Madame Luna…how wonderful to see you again."

The mare did not smile at him, only icily handed him a note. "This arrived for you monsieur…I suggest you read it at once." With that, the mare turned away and stalked back to the shadows from which she came.

Although Fluttershy was a good distance ahead of the Prince, she overheard Madame Luna's words about the note. She recalled how Twilight had told her that the Phantom only communicated through notes, and while she was still trying to convince herself that the whole notion of the Phantom of the Opera was ridiculous, she found herself pausing after she turned a corner.

She overheard the Prince mumble some of the words, before cursing and crumbling the note. He threw it on the ground and stomped off in a different direction. Fluttershy waited till the sounds of his footsteps were far off before emerging from her hiding place. She quickly dashed to where he had been standing and picked the crumbled note up off the ground. She smoothed the paper out as best she could, and began to read.

To Prince Blueblood,

Monsieur, I do advise you not to harass the people of my theater. As your interests in opera are extremely limited, I suggest you leave all matters of staff to me…and keep what little understanding you have of the opera business to strictly bucking the prima donna-

Fluttershy gasped at the words and found herself blushing deeply. Was…was it true? She recalled how Fleur De Lis always seemed to throw herself at him…and the mysterious engagements the two of them had while in her dressing room…

She shook her head, not truly wanting to dwell on such things, and continued to read.

-and prancing about like a plumed peacock. Good day. I remain, —O.G.

Fluttershy stared at the initials on the letter for a long time. O.G.–opera ghost. Were the stories true? Was it possible that the Phantom wasn't a myth? But ghosts couldn't write notes…at least none of the ghosts in Fluttershy's novels could. But maybe he truly was a stallion…a mad stallion, living somewhere within this theater, watching all that went on, watching…watching her.

She swallowed the lump in her throat and slowly rose. Earlier, when she believed the stories to be simply stories, she found the idea slightly romantic, while eerie as well. Yet now Fluttershy felt a cold shiver run down her body, and she found herself moving very quickly back to where she had left her work.

"Wait…" she paused. "Madame Luna was the one who delivered the note…she must have written it!" Yes! It made sense; Fluttershy could tell Madame Luna had a cold dislike for the Prince. She must have written the letter, and then initialed it as such to frighten him--or at least upset him--either way it got him to leave.

That was what it was, a letter in the guise of the Phantom's threat. She felt calmer at the thought, yet there was a tiny piece of her that also regretted the reality of it; while the stories she had heard about the Phantom sounded frightening, the idea of a mysterious shadow-clad knight coming to her rescue was very romantic.

"Fluttershy, you really must control your sensibilities!" she scolded herself before hurrying back to the costume room.

Discord smiled wickedly from his hidden rooftop view as he watched an angry Prince Blueblood exit the building. The Prince slammed his hat on top of his shimmering golden mane and stalked toward his carriage. The driver leapt to his feet and opened the door, grimacing when he saw the nobleman's expression.

"Get us out of here!" the Prince ordered, settling back into his carriage and glaring at the Opera House that stood before him. "Make no mistake about it," he muttered to himself. "I will have her."

Discord watched with amusement as the carriage pulled away. He couldn't help but laugh at the whole situation. The sight of the handsome Prince Blueblood being snubbed by a pretty mare was extremely comical to Discord. He leaned against the ghastly stone ponies he was hiding behind and laughed for a good long time, not caring if anyone heard him; it would only convince others further of the legends of the infamous Opera Ghost.

Indeed, the Opera hadn't been this entertaining since…well, since before Fleur De Lis first placed her overgrown hoof on the stage. The costume mare was truly fascinating; she was so unlike the others. Despite the Prince's compliments and good looks, she saw past the whole façade and would have none of his bullying. She was intelligent and courageous, outwitting the Prince and standing up to Fleur De Lis; indeed, he liked this mare very much.

His smile faded at that thought. True, the mare was different compared to the squealing dance trollops, but she was still a pretty face that would scream at the sight of him should he reveal himself. His lips twisted in disgust as he thought about how often he would come to see her while she worked. He supposed the whole ordeal began when the Prince wouldn't leave her alone. He found himself pitying the mare, something he rarely did, and today, when he realized that the son of a bitch was interfering with the young mare's concentration to the point where she was causing injury to herself, he had to intervene.

Discord felt a grin return to his lips as he recalled the Prince's displeasure at the note he ordered Madame Luna to deliver. Prince Blueblood did not believe in the Phantom, he was far too "rational" for such things. However, Discord knew how greatly upsetting it was for the stallion to receive such reminders of the Phantom's existence. His grin grew wider as he thought that one day soon, Blueblood would not be able to deny his very real presence.

The bells of Notre Mane sounded the hour, reminding Discord of the vast amount of work that still needed to be done before the opening gala tomorrow. "Faust" would be the first opera of the season; thank God the managers followed some of his instructions. Indeed, there were still a great many things to be done. If only he could find a soprano to replace the harpy.

That night, Fluttershy barely slept a wink. Her dreams were plagued with a dark figure, cloaked in shadows, calling out her name in a haunting voice, while sweet chilling music played in the distance. She could not see his face, yet she went to him, his voice beckoning to her like a siren's. She tried to touch him, but he would move away. However, she felt his hooves upon her; they were large, rough, a worker's, yet they were also gentle, touching her as if she were a finely tuned instrument waiting to be played for the first time.
Every dream was the same: haunting, chilling, erotic. And when she awoke, she was covered in sweat and her body was throbbing for the touch of her ghost. These thoughts and feelings frightened her, for she had a funny feeling she knew very well who the stallion was in her dreams.

The sun came all too early. Fluttershy groaned when her father came to rouse her out of bed. "Come, we have much to do today…for tonight is the opening gala of the opera season!"

With much reluctance, Fluttershy forced herself out of bed and hurried off with her father to the busy Opera House. The place was a scene of chaos. While the gala would not begin till seven, there was a frantic state to get everything in order. The managers were running here and there, trying to please Fleur De Lis and be sure everything was prepared on stage. Madame Luna worked meticulously with the dance, telling the mares that only perfection would satisfy her. The orchestra rehearsed the entire opera, complete with chorus and one star. Fancypants sang, but Fleur De Lis believed herself to be well beyond ready, and chose to spend the day pampering herself. Meanwhile, Fluttershy carefully added the final touches to Fleur De Lis' costumes and gently laid them out for the over-confident star to change into.

Throughout the day, Fluttershy kept hearing talk about mysterious notes. Dancers and stage hooves gossiped about the letters that were mysteriously arriving by the hour to the managers, demanding perfection for the evening. Fluttershy couldn't help but grin when she heard two dance mares giggling that one letter demanded for Fleur De Lis' understudy to perform instead.

Yet Fluttershy found herself even more confused than before. She spent so much energy the previous day trying to convince herself that the letter Madame Luna had delivered to Prince Bueblood was penned by the cold dance mistress herself. However, there was that small annoying voice in the back of her head that kept telling her it was him, the mysterious Phantom. Now, with talk over all these notes, she found that voice growing louder and louder.

The day went by in a whirl. Before anyone knew it, night had fallen over the Opera House, and slowly, dressed in their elegant silks, linens, and furs, the crème de la crème of Maris society arrived in dazzling carriages. Fluttershy managed to sneak away for a few minutes and watch from a balcony overlooking the grand foyer, the arrival of the toast of society. Her eyes quickly scanned the crowded scene before her and saw no sign of the handsome Prince. She thought it odd that a stallion who patronized the Opera as well as he, would not come to a performance, especially the opening opera of the season. However, she remembered how upset he appeared to be after reading the infamous note. Perhaps it was her words; perhaps she was able to sting him with the truth and he was unable to remove her stinger. She couldn't help but grin a little at that thought.

Meanwhile, Fluttershy's father was back stage tuning his instrument, trying to desperately calm his nerves. He hadn't played before an audience in what felt like centuries, and at last his opportunity had come. He needed to calm down; his hooves were shaking so violently he was afraid he wouldn't be able to properly play! What he truly needed was some fresh air, or at the very least, a brief walk away from the auditorium. While patrons were not yet being seated, he could hear them in the foyer and in their private lounges, clinking glasses of champagne and laughing gaily amongst themselves. Yes, he needed to walk away and mentally prepare himself for this wonderful, yet slightly terrifying opportunity.

"I ain't goin' down there!" muttered a gruff looking stage hoof. Time Turner turned his head to see a group of strong unshaven stage hooves argue over who needed to fetch a prop for the opera.

"Well I ain't doin it!" another said just as fiercely. "Cranky always warned us that if you went down there without permission, you would never return alive! Remember Mr. Breezy? Has anyone seen him since he disappeared below stage a year ago?"

"Well someone has to go down there!" another added. "Flim says they need that piece, that it's vital for the opera-"

"Hang Flim and the whole lot of them! They don't understand the things we risk and put up with here. He wants it so bad? Let him get it!"

Time Turner cleared his throat, and the small group of stallions slowly turned towards him. Their eyes went wide at the sight of the stallion who was asking for their attention. "I beg your pardon gentlecolts, but…I do not understand why there is this fear of simply going below stage to retrieve a simple prop?"

The stallions looked at one another, then back at the old stallion, then at one another again, as if to understand they heard him right. "Don't understand?" one of them asked. "Don't you know about…about…you know, the ghost?"

Time Turner made a sound with his lips that signified disbelief. "Oh come now, I would not think that stallions like you would believe in such ghost stories?"

"They be true stories!" one of the stage hooves argued most gruffly. "I've seen him! He lurks in the shadows, and I was lucky to get away with me life! He had his Punjab lasso with him, and he was going to put it around my neck, when I-"

"When did this happen to you?" one of the stallions asked looking extremely skeptical.

The other who had been telling story became flustered at the question. "W-why…surely you remember, that day…a few months ago, when I didn't come to work? I was sure I told you…"

"I remember that day you didn't show up for work, because you were as drunk as a sewer rat! That's one of Cranky's stories about the Phantom, you lying-"

"GENTLECOLTS!"

All the stage hooves turned to look at the old stallion again, surprised that he had such a voice. Time Turner straightened his shoulders, knowing that anyone of these stallions could squash him like a bug if they wished. Yet he could not believe that such filly stories had this gruff looking lot shaking in their boots. "If none of you are willing to fetch whatever prop this is–what is the prop?"

"A spinning wheel," one of them muttered. "It's been in storage for years, but apparently Fleur De Lis' character needs it."

Time Turner nodded his head. "Very well, since none of you will venture below stage to retrieve this spinning wheel…" he sighed heavily, as he did when he was handling Fluttershy's fears when she was a small filly, "then I will go and fetch it."

The stage hooves stared blankly at Time Turner, as if they weren't quite sure if they heard him correctly. Then, all at once, the whole lot burst into hysterical laughter. "Y-y-you!" one of them said between chuckles. "You old stallion…are going to go below stage…into the Phantom's domain?" They all burst into laughter again.

Time Turner grunted, straightening his shoulders even more and glaring at the buffoons before him. "Yes!" he said with determination, lifting his chin proudly. "I will! I, a violinist, will do the job of a stage hoof, the job of stallions who are too afraid of the dark!"

They all kept laughing. "You w-w-would be afraid too, if you k-k-knew w-w-what was down t-there!"

Time Turner shook his head and turned on his heel. "Which way do I go?" he asked, looking for a door that would lead him away. The stallions's laughter rose to new levels at this question.

Time Turner despised being laughed at, especially by ponies who looked at him and thought him inferior. His beloved wife's family, were no different. Even when he announced to his own family that he was going to become a renowned violinist, he was met with laughter. Only Fluttershy, his beloved child, believed in his dreams. And she knew that when he was determined, he could be most foolish, due to his stubborn pride.

So naturally, when these stallions continued to laugh at him over and over again, he felt his pride rising along with his stubbornness, and knew that he had to fetch this silly spinning wheel to prove that he, a old stallion, was not afraid of any figment. So he set off, spying a door that he was sure led below stage, marched over to it, and turned one last time to look at his laughing companions.

It was slowly beginning to die down, as they looked at him before he descended the darkened steps beyond the door. "I'll return soon with your precious prop," Time Turner snapped, before taking a deep breath and stepping through the dark passageway.

No one was laughing now. For deep within their hearts, the stage hoofs knew, especially after they exchanged worried glances amongst themselves, that the old stallion had descended to his death.

Author's Note:

Mr. Breezy is seen in the show when he loans one of his fans to the Cutie Mark Crusaders in The Show Stoppers. He wears a green Tam o' Shanter and vest and I thought he would work for his short role.
www.operaphantomdiscord.tumblr.com

Edtied: 7/16/2014