1. Published 25th Feb 2013
  2. 18,616 Views, 1,487 Comments

Winds of Change - Masterweaver


Rainbow Dash is a changeling. Who knew?

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"She's almost ready."

Twilight flung her book aside and jumped up. "Really?!"

Bonbon nodded, glancing at the cocoon in the corner. "Give it about half an hour, and you'll be sweeping up silk." She grinned wryly. "I'm ready to stop being a spare body, thank you very much."

"Aheh, yeah, um...." Twilight's eyes darted left and right. "You said food, right?"

"Food and friends. Lyra's out gathering everypony--"

"SPIIIIIIKE! SPIKE IT'S ALMOST TIME!" The unicorn galloped down the stairs. "You can dust later, Spike, we've got less then half an hour to get things prepped!"

"Relax, Twilight, I pre-cooked everything!" Bonbon giggled to herself as she heard the dragon's voice waft up from below. "You just have to hit it all with a warming spell!"

"Oh, yeah, I forgot..."

The cream earth pony rolled her eyes, taking her seat beside the cocoon. "I don't think those two would survive without each other. Hey, why was Spike locked up between the weddings anyway?"

A faint rustle came from the cocoon.

"Wait... the Mukade are real?"

Another rustle.

"Wow. I knew Chrysalis had pinned the blame on somebody, but the Mukade... we got off light, all things considered." Bonbon shivered. "If they'd had gotten their hooves on Spike--"

"Spike doesn't know about the Mukade," Twilight interjected as she came upstairs. "All he knows is that somebody was after a young dragon, and I'd prefer it stay that way."

"...yeah, that's probably a good idea. Don't want him having nightmares." Bonbon's eyes darted around. "So... um... how have things been with you?"

"Oh, you know, mostly okay. Been seeing a therapist for my..." Twilight sighed. "My guilt complex--"

"The past is the past, Twilight. I left a child to die and..." Bonbon sighed. "Take it from me, letting your mistakes define you can lead you down a very dark road. Focus on what you have now." She smiled gently. "You've got Spike, one of the greatest assistant/brother/sons I have ever seen. You've got your family, filled with ponies that love you and a couple that happen to be family. You have five of the best ponies in the world as friends, and the adoration of one of the best pony towns as a local hero." She waved around the room. "And your own library, how cool is that?!"

Twilight giggled. "Okay, okay, I see your point..."

The two of them perked their ears as they heard the door downstairs opening up.

"Twilight, we've got company!"

Bonbon and Twilight shared a look. Then they braced themselves.

A flurry of hooves ran up the stairs. There was Rarity, panting heavily as she dropped an emergency sewing kit against the wall. There was Pinkie, helping Spike carry a ridiculous amount of food. There was Fluttershy, talking quietly with Rainbow Dash's parents. There was Applejack, trying to keep the cutie mark crusaders in line. And there was Lyra, standing casually on Princess Luna's back.

"P-Princess Luna!" Twilight stammered as she swiftly stood up. "What are you doing here?"

"As per certain treaties, miss Rainbow Dash is to be the Queen of the Equestrian Hive Mind." Luna pulled a scroll from her feathers. "There's a lot of details to hammer out, but I do require her to sign this as soon as she can."

Bonbon narrowed her eyes. "Lyra, why are you standing on Luna?"

"I think a better question would be, why wouldn't I be standing on Luna?"

"Because I am your wife and seeing you on another pony might make me outrageously jealous."

"Good point." Lyra hopped off the night princess. "But it brings up another point. Bonbon, I want babies."

The cream mare blinked, suddenly aware of all the eyes on them. "I... what?"

"Foals, bundles of joy, pitter patter of little hooves." Lyra stalked forward. "You, me, offspring. You've got the equipment, we just have to use it."

"Um, I don't know if a pony and a changeling can--"

"Ponies are naturally magical, and part of that magic extends to the development of infants. We can stabilize cross genetic material far more easily than other species. Look at mules, Bonbon. Or Zonies. Or hippogryphs. Heck, centaurs, Bonnie!" The green face jammed into the cream one. "CENTAURS!"

"I... don't... they aren't-- can we talk about this later?"

"Okey doke." Lyra pulled back and sat down with a grin. "But we are going to talk about this later."

There was an awkward moment where nopony really said anything.

"....SO! Luna." Twilight smiled. "Equestrian Hive you said."

"Ah, yes." Luna nodded. "The Changeling hive mind is a natural extension of their empathetic abilities, and formed as their society did. It is so key to their culture that they based their morality around its presence and its usage. They became.. not less individual, but more willing to give up aspects of themselves and bond deeper." She shook her head. "Changelings who didn't want to be a part could leave, but it was... considered a form of hermitage. It still is. And because of our own view on altering minds, ponies became seen as savages...."

She paused for a moment. "...Twilight, where did you get that quill and scroll?"

"Library, spare writing supplies. This is fascinating, a whole different morality system..." The unicorn looked up at her, eyes shimmering eagerly. "Tell me more!"

Luna stared at her for a few seconds.

Then she shook her head. "All that to say that the hive mind in and of itself is... not evil. In fact, I was temporarily in a position of power.... Changeling Queens, you must understand, are usually selected by the Hive, metamorphosed from a deserving drone using the hormones secreted by the crown of another Queen. They can direct a hive mind, it is true, but that is only because they bond with it on a far deeper level during their metamorphosis."

Luna tapped her hoof. "What Chrysalis did was fueled by misconception and arrogance. As part of the peace treaty, I have... made a motion to build a similar mental construct for Equestrian usage. Changelings who feel that Chrysalis's methods are intolerable can break away and join this new hive mind, and... there may be benefits for ponies who choose to join as well."

Bonbon hesitantly raised a hoof. "Ah... I don't know if you realize this, but, um, it takes some time to build a hive mind--"

"That will not be a problem. A significant portion of the changelings that were installed as sleeper agents broke off from the hive mind after Chrysalis revealed her plans to invade. They have formed a secondary hive mind of their own. I've talked to them, and they've agreed to the situation." Luna gestured toward the cocoon. "All Rainbow Dash would need to do is... administrate, for lack of a better term."

"Dash, a leader?" Spike crossed his arms. "Well, there goes the country."

"Hey!" Scootaloo shouted. "Rainbow Dash is totally a responsible leader type pony! She runs the weather service, after all!"

"That's... terribly convenient," Bonbon managed. "I didn't even realize they... well, I just assumed--"

"Chrysalis is a warlord, not a tyrant." Luna shrugged. "She didn't enslave any changeling that didn't willingly enter slavery, but she did prefer loyal citizens to deserters." She flicked her wings. "Her hatred toward you is more because of her own prejudice regarding your spouse."

Lyra snorted. "She's just jealous."

"...Whatever the reason," Luna continued, "she has officially banished you from the swarm."

"Totally jealous, she was checking out my tail all through the wedding."

Bonbon blinked. "Wait, seriously?"

"Yep." The unicorn shrugged. "Flattering and all, but totally creepy."

"...You're just messing with me, aren't you."

"Maaaaaaaaybe."

"You'll be happy to know the entire Chrysalis hive is currently mining crystal from the Canterhorn mines to pay their reperations," Luna deadpanned.

"IRONY ROCKS!" Lyra grinned. "Cause, you know, that was where she put Cadance. Cause of the thing."

Twilight sighed. "Right..."

Another long and awkward silence filled the library.

"So..." Fluttershy coughed a bit. "When is Dash going to... come out?"

"Oh! Oh it should be any time now." Bonbon nodded. "Bit of warning, she's going to be very hungry and running partly on instinct. Don't get between her and the food till I say it's safe."

"Will she need, um..." Twilight coughed gently, gesturing toward her horn. "You know... unique dietary supplements?"

The cream mare rolled her eyes. "You let me worry about that part, okay?" With a flash of green fire she'd shifted into a black and chitinous form, her silky mane and tail still a bit shorter than usual. "She'll be fine. I can just--"

Without any warning the cocoon began to bulge and stretch. Instantly everyone's eyes were drawn to the spectacle. Anticipation built as some threads split and curled away; the struggling grew more intense with each passing second.

A horn shaped like a black lightning bolt ripped out through the skin. There was some frustrated muttering before it retracted, and a bit more shifting. A hole riddled hoof emerged through the gap, tearing down through the cocoon in quick, short bursts. Soon enough it was joined by another hoof, the pair pushing outward, and it was only moments later that the horn reemerged with a gasping face in tow.

"AIR! ACTUAL FRESH AIR!" Rainbow struggled forward, pulling herself out as quickly as she could. "I had to marinade in my own sweat for three and a half weeks, you have NO idea--"

"Dashie it's so good to see you face to face again!" Pinkie beamed brightly, nudging a large hayburger forward.

"Haha, Pinkie, I get it. Funny!" The changeling knelt down and tore half the burger off in a single chomp. "Mmmph. Mmmm. Mrm, yeah, that was good. Oh great, my leg's still caught in--"

"Let me help you with that." Bonbon pushed the last of the cocoon away from Rainbow Dash's rear leg, leaving the shell to fall to the ground. "Oh, you might want to stretch your wings now. best to get them uncrimped as soon as possible."

The new queen swallowed the second half of the burger. "What, now?"

"Yes. Just... roll your shoulders and flatten your shell."

Rainbow Dash nodded, pushing up with her longer legs and standing as tall as Luna herself. She narrowed her slit blue eyes, testing the new set of muscles underneath the blue shell on her back. A few azure ridges around her thorax opened and closed as she flicked her blue silky tail in frustration.

And then the buds on her shoulders sprung out, unfurling into long thin paddles that shimmered in the light. A spectral pattern traced through the translucent veins, reds and yellows and blues curling round and round mixing in an image almost like the sky itself. Each experimental flap bathed the room in a glittering rainbow of color, and it seemed as though a bank of clouds dashed through the wings themselves.

"...pretty..." Pinkie murmured.

"Wow. Okay... that's... Bonbon, what the hay is up with my wings?"

"Um... If I had to guess...?" The candymaker shrugged. "I have no bloody clue. Maybe making rainbooms altered your body when you were young, or something to do with the Elements, or maybe it's just a genetic quirk."

"Huh." The room descended into quiet contemplation once again.

Scootaloo piped up. "I, personally, think they look pretty awesome."

"...Yeah. Yeah they do. You know what?" Rainbow grinned. "I think I'm ready to test these babies out."

Author's Note:

That's that, story's over!

Well, this one. The sequel's already begun, and there are a few other tales in this verse that are going to be told. Eventually. But at the moment, I'm pretty sure we've got what we needed. Well, what we needed for now.

You know what, it's just... wow, I finally finished this. Wow.

...so in other news, I'm going to the Nightmare Nights con in Dallas...

#1 · 139w, 1d ago · · ·

Oooo, Nightmare Nights Dallas, you might just see me there.

#2 · 139w, 1d ago · 6 · ·

bruger

:facehoof: Still good, though.

Lab
#3 · 139w, 1d ago · 16 · ·

Look at mules, Bonbon. Or Zonies. Or hippogryphs. Heck, centaurs, Bonnie!
Out of all of those, centaurs bother me the most. Not because of the human+pony thing—it just weirds me out that they have two ribcages.

#4 · 139w, 1d ago · 3 · 1 ·

I'm rather (unpleasantly) surprised Dash's mom and dad wasn't there for the 'rebirth.'

You know, after what a deal it was made about her still being their daughter?

Other than that though, a nice ending to a good story. Props!

#5 · 139w, 1d ago · 14 · ·

Okay here we go, long critique review bla bla bla…

Probably was the best part of the fic was when Dash was sitting around in the dungeon. It had all the emotional reactions best dialogue, and took the time to give each one of the characters a chance to shine.

It also had a good amount of emotional description, despite the lack of introspection done by any of the characters they just said what they thought in a sentence or two. That kept things moving fast while also keeping it an ‘outsider looking in’ kind of perspective of the television show. Very good.

But as things went on, the quality kind of just declined.

It really wasn’t anything major, but…a lack of description here and there…it added up to take a big chunk away from the whole and kind of just came off as you rushing to the end you had planned out some time ago just to get it done and move onto what was next or something because some other story idea just wouldn’t wait its turn.

Quick example…

“…Pretty…” Pinkie murmured.

While it could have been…

“…Pretty…” Pinkie murmured as her wide eyes looked at the rainbow wings in awe.

Maybe not something as grandiose, but a few extra words and it shows just how enchanted Pinkie was.

It’s about it. Probably see you in Dallas among the throngs of people.

#6 · 139w, 1d ago · · ·

I agree with Pinky.

This was a very enjoyable ending to a great story. :pinkiehappy:

#7 · 139w, 1d ago · 9 · ·

Best Lyra ever.

Ten outta ten. Ten outta ten.

#8 · 139w, 1d ago · 3 · ·

>>5056216

Her parents are there.  They come in just before Lyra on Luna's back.  They don't say anything, though.

#9 · 139w, 1d ago · 4 · ·

>>5056319

Her parents are there.  They come in just before Lyra on Luna's back.  They don't say anything, though.

Oh! Missed that! :twilightblush:

Still think they should have had a few lines in that case, but thanks for pointing it out.

#10 · 139w, 1d ago · · ·

I hope Lyra and Bon Bon have babies soon!:twilightsmile: I also love Rainbow's new wings, perfectly suits her.

#11 · 139w, 1d ago · · ·

And so it was, that the whole Equestrian Hive, to celebrate the ascendancy of Princess Twilight Sparkle, did commit upon the stratosphere a multitude of sonic rainbooms.

Or maybe not!  Who knows?  The author does, and they are rightfully not revealing anything!  Let us instead raise toast to Queen Rainbow Dash!  For this day is going to be perfect, that nopony ever saw coming!

#12 · 139w, 1d ago · · ·

TOUCHDOWN! (\:rainbowdetermined2:/)

Now to head over to the sequel, already in progress. :trollestia:

#13 · 139w, 1d ago · · ·

did Twilight almost pull a Pinie? I love the fact there is a sequel.

#14 · 139w, 1d ago · · ·

A great end to a great story. :pinkiesmile:

Enjoy being Queen, Dash! What? No, you can't call yourself Queen Awesome.:ajbemused:

#15 · 139w, 1d ago · 2 · ·

>>5056398

Agree with you there.

#16 · 139w, 1d ago · 1 · ·

>>5056142 I feel like eating a bruger now.

D48
#17 · 139w, 1d ago · 1 · ·

>>5056157 That's not necessarily the case.  The internal organs must be arranged differently so it stands to reason that the ribcage would be different as well.  My guess is that the upper (human) body would have the heart and lungs while the lower (horse) body would have the stomach, intestines, and generally everything else that is packed in the lower torso of a human.  The ribcage would probably extend down the full length of the human body to protect and support the organs there and might continue back around under the forelegs and along the side of the body in a reduced form to provide some additional support to the organs there.  I would expect the overall result to be a relatively hard human body due to the extra ribs and a relatively soft horse body due to the relative lack of ribs with both being proportionally thinner because the organs are spread out more.

Lab
#18 · 139w, 1d ago · · ·

>>5056794 It was a joke based on the most popular anatomy of centaurs, not a "realistic" view of them. I shouldn't need a disclaimer stating "I will not be held responsible if this joke contradicts what is feasible in reality or your headcanon."

If I were actually starting a discussion on centaur anatomy, your comment would be warranted. It's easy to theorize the anatomy of a fictional creature. Centaurs are invertebrates and are supported by a system of fluid-filled bladders. Or maybe centaurs are the mature form of a parasite that infests and ultimately controls horses, replacing their head and neck with a mass of tissue that resembles a human head and torso. Or they could just be people who are really, really bad at wearing horse costumes. See, I can do it too.

#19 · 139w, 1d ago · · ·

So...yeah, I've got nothing.

D48
#20 · 139w, 1d ago · 1 · ·

>>5057061 Honestly, that was not at all preplanned.  Your comment just got my brain going so I went ahead and dumped my musings here as they came up. :twilightblush:

#21 · 139w, 1d ago · · ·

That was fun.  Looking forward to the squeal.

Keep up the good work.  Deus tecum.

#22 · 139w, 1d ago · · ·

first off, very good ending and i look forward to readign the sequel... literally have been resisting reading that til this was done for no spoilers.

second, there's a nightmare night con? DAMN IT! i live in Australia, not dallas. Why is it every single con is out of my reach?! I can't even go to the ones in Sydney!

#24 · 139w, 1d ago · · ·

So, that was a thing.

I'll agree with some people that the later chapters seemed a bit more rushed and not quite as strong as the earlier ones, but all told they were still ridiculously great even then. Now, on to the sequel!

>>5056775 Indeed

>>5056794 ...Bookmark'd

#25 · 139w, 1d ago · · ·

This was nice. Not my favorite story in any regards, but it was a very solid fic. I'm also glad you completed it today, because I would not have been satisfied without that ending. In total prettygood/10

#26 · 139w, 1d ago · · ·

Well that was certainly an interesting read. The only chapter I have issue with was 16. Rather difficult to grasp the imagery and what was going on. Btu other than that, a well constructed story. Although one thing I felt was skimmed over was both Celestia's interaction with Twi and how she should apologize and handle her guilt with her as well as Dashie and her situation w/ the real Rainbow Dash and her parents, cause that seemed tossed out the window once the CMC were foalnapped.  Unless those two things are going to be covered in the sequels, then cool.

#27 · 139w, 23h ago · 5 · ·

I think the story started great, but fell down during the last couple of chapters, it was a bit too fast and convenient to be truly enjoyable. But ignoring that, still a good read!

#28 · 139w, 19h ago · · ·

Well, that was a fun ride. Thank you for one of the more thorough "X is a changeling" stories on the site. I love the design for Queen Dash, and I look forward to more from this universe.

#29 · 139w, 17h ago · · ·

Loved it and looking forward to more

-Fusion

#30 · 139w, 17h ago · 5 · ·

"Wait... the Mukade are real?"

This came out of nowhere and I don't know why it is here.

#31 · 139w, 17h ago · · ·

Loved it.

#32 · 139w, 14h ago · · ·

>>5054134

She is an abrasive female personage whom bears a disrespect for the reasonings of others. :twilightsmile:

like a jerk-off, but more womanly.

#33 · 139w, 3h ago · 1 · ·

One burger? That's it? the way it's written, you'd think they prepped a feast for thirty...:rainbowhuh:

Still, it's a good ending chapter... until the sequel comes out.:raritywink:

#36 · 138w, 6d ago · 3 · 1 ·

All in all, the only things I even remotely disliked in this story were that a changeling only had to eat a piece of a queen's mane to become a queen themselves, and that Twilight was seeing a therapist about guilt from only the wedding.

The first just seemed a little ridiculous/simple for something so monumental, but bugs in real life aren't much different (royal jelly and all) and this is a fictional species, so the rules are up to the various authors who write about changelings; I've just always imagined there being a little more to changeling queen biology than nomming on someones hair is all.

As for Twilight, it's been, like, a month or two since the wedding, there were apologies all around, and no pony is apparently holding grudges, so the fact that she is still so torn-up about it that seeing a psych is needed is kind of, well, pathetic for lack of a better word. I would be hard-pressed not to say to her given the opportunity, "Get the fuck over it, you whiny bitch! So you 'almost' killed someone you liked because you understandably mistook them for a villain who just legitimately revealed themselves as such before dropping you into a deep, dark cavern. That is not nearly 'months of depression and professional help' worthy guilt, that's a week of contemplation and minor soul searching at most."

I mean, don't get me wrong, Twilight has a lot in her life to be guilty for, the most prominent being the want-it, need-it incident or being a weird-ass coward during Trixie's first visit. Heck, throw on the Fluttershy/Rarity model thing where she didn't mediate between her friends because they both asked her not to tell the other one about their true feelings on the situation, even though she knew not doing so was hurting them; that was very much a clear "they'll understand and thank me later" scenario that she totally failed to handle properly. Seeing a professional for an extended period of time to deal with guilt from these sorts of things would make sense to me, but she's apparently only seeking help over one event that any quack worth their ink-blots should have been able to get her through in a few sessions.

Bit of a side-note, what Twilight should really feel guilty for is the fact that she became a princess based of the merits and achievements of the Mane6 while the rest are given nothing. How is that fair? Twilight couldn't have done any of the things she had if not for them and vice versa, so why is the only one to be rewarded with a rank of royalty and power increase the one with horrible judgement and social ineptitude? Do you really want some one willing to mind-control an entire town just to finish a homework assignment to be in any sort of position of power?

Anyway, enough ranting, the point is, I liked the bulk of your story and shall give you an upvote for it... So here you go.  

#38 · 138w, 6d ago · · ·

>>5060274

Meh, I guess you could say that, but I think I'd just say her beliefs have been twisted overtime due to her inability to see anyone elses point of view. She's...close-minded.

#39 · 138w, 6d ago · · ·

Awesome story! I'm really happy to see how you finished it, and satisfied with most of it. You say there's a sequel. Is that sequel the "Months of Mommy Madness"?

#40 · 138w, 5d ago · 1 · ·

>>5063420 Now That's a Burger... built for thirty.:trollestia::moustache:

#41 · 138w, 5d ago · · ·

>>5067924

(Did not read your conversation)

Burger? Where! I love burgers!!!:rainbowlaugh:

#42 · 138w, 4d ago · · ·

FUCK I really want to go to nightmare night but I can't! Ffuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuck

#43 · 138w, 3d ago · · ·

>>5075388 Isn't it great?

#44 · 138w, 3d ago · · ·

Wow, I finished it! :twilightsmile: I think my favorite parts were the parts that talked about what's right and what's wrong.

#45 · 136w, 9h ago · · ·

YAy, nice story. :derpytongue2:

#46 · 130w, 4d ago · 7 · ·

"You'll be happy to know the entire Chrysalis hive is currently mining crystal from the Canterhorn mines to pay their reperations," Luna deadpanned.

"IRONY ROCKS!" Lyra grinned. "Cause, you know, that was where she put Cadance. Cause of the thing."

They should have been mining iron ore. Because irony rocks. As in, iron-y rocks. :ajbemused:

Okay, okay, no more horrible puns. I promise. :twilightblush:

#47 · 128w, 6h ago · · ·

I enjoyed this story very much. I wish we had a few chapters or a sub story exploring the interactions and reconciliation between Twilight Sparkle and Major Celestia.

#48 · 125w, 5d ago · 2 · ·

The changeling knelt down and tore half the burger off in a single chomp

The fuck do they have burgers for? PONIES?

#49 · 125w, 4d ago · · ·

>>5436802 umm...Okaaaay? :unsuresweetie:

#50 · 124w, 6d ago · · ·

(CH 0)

You're very good at what you do... :fluttercry:

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