• Published 5th Apr 2013
  • 609 Views, 164 Comments

Ever After - Mixer

The sequel to the Mixer Chronicles

  • ...


Chapter 4

“Now where could that pony be?” Applejack asked as she and her family walked through the empty streets of the changeling occupied district. Despite the odd disappearance of the changelings, they had yet to come across another pony.

“Maybe they’re in there,” Braeburn suggested, pointing to a building with a sign in the shape of a mug of cider hanging in the front. The posse of shades stopped in front of the building.

“It’s as good a place as any I suppose,” Applejack said after awhile. "But any place is better than what we've got right now."

As they approached the building, they noticed a sign hung on the door. NO CHANGELINGS it read in bright crimson. Several unconscious members of the unwelcome species were sprawled in a heap to the right if the door. At least, they looked unconscious.

“Well, that’s a good a sign as any that this is the right place,” Braeburn said. "At least, he could be inside."

“Just keep your guard up,” Applejack growled, shoving open the door. The four shades were greeted by a mostly empty bar. There were only around five ponies in the gloom, yet all of them managed to throw dirty looks in the group's direction as they entered. The looks quickly fell back towards the drinks the patrons all sat clutching. The barkeep hauled out a large truncheon, laying the heavy wood across the smooth bar before going back to polishing some glasses.

"Friendly place,” Apple Bloom muttered.

“We still have to look for our pony though,” Applejack whispered.

“Hey Mac, looks like they have a ‘shoe pit in the back,” Braeburn said, nudging the large stallion. “You feel like a game?”

“Eeyup." The two started off for the pit.

“We’re not here for fun and games,” Applejack growled, pulling the two stallions back.

“No, but at least we’ll draw less suspicion if we look all casual like,” Braeburn said. "Incognito, that is, playing some horseshoes."

“I think it’s a little too late for that,” Apple Bloom remarked. The patrons were again staring at the shade posse. It took a while longer before they returned to their drinks again.

“Well, spread out and see if you can find anythin',” Applejack said, moving to the bar. Apple Bloom decided to hang back by the door while Braeburn and Mac went over to play their game.

“I haven’t seen you around here before,” the bartender said as Applejack took a seat. He had replaced the truncheon under the bar. "What do you want?"

“We’re new in town,” she replied, not completely lying. "And uh... I'll take some cider."

“Well, you sure found the worst neighborhood to visit,” a white earth pony sitting a little ways away said. He sat slouched over the bar, one hoof cradling a drink, the other idly tracing the curves in the wood. He didn't look up from his drink.

“That right?” Applejack asked.

“Yeah, ever since the city was taken over, this district has been full of changelings,” he replied, running the free hoof through his long white hair. "I'm sure you noticed, seeing as how you're not blind." The pony downed his glass, signaling the bartender for another one.

“You look awful peculiar,” Applejack said. The stallion had a pure white coat with an equally white mane. His mane and tail had light blue streaks that went through them.

“Yeah, and you four don’t look too normal yourselves,” he shot back. "Black leather isn't really that common around here. Not anywhere, come to think of it," he muttered.

“Well, aren’t you just a ball of sunshine,” Applejack retorted. The pony finally turned to face her. His ice blue eyes almost seemed to bore into the shade.

“If you insist on continuing to insult me, then shouldn't we at least know each other’s names?” he asked.

“You are a strange one,” Applejack said.

“No, just honest. I don't like not knowing who I'm talking to. Name’s Frost,” he said.

Applejack raised an eyebrow, “AJ,” she replied.

“Simple name for a mare who looks like an outlaw from Appleoosa,” Frost said.

“Now you watch yerself Frost,” Applejack growled. "I'm not just some outlaw." Frost shrugged.

“I was only inferring..." the pony started. Applejack's glare cut him short. He tried a different route. "So why are you here AJ?” Frost pried.

“We’re looking for somepony,” she said. "Somepony very, very special." The stallion had a laugh at that.

"I bet you are," he said. “And I assume by ‘we’ that you mean those two at the pit and her,” Frost said, pointing to Braeburn and Mac, who were now looking over at them, and at Apple Bloom who was still looking around nervously.

“Yeah...” Applejack said.

“I doubt that four ponies dressed as you are are up to anything good. I mean, you look like a mercenary band,” he said. "Ooh, maybe debt collectors," he said. "Or bounty hunters!" The bartender finished filling up Frost's drink. He downed it in one go. "Wouldn't that be nice."

“Are you insulting my family?” Applejack bristled.

“Family are they?” Frost asked. "Well, at least you all share the same sense of fashion." Applejack slammed her hoof down onto the bar.

“Yeah, we are. And we don’t take kindly to being talked down about, especially by stuck up ponies like you,” she threatened.

“Hey you two, settle down. If you’re going to start a fight, take it outside,” the barkeep said.

“What do you say AJ?” Frost said.

“Is that a challenge?” Applejack asked.

“Do you even have to ask?” he countered, giving a small grin.

“Alright pretty boy. You want some, let’s go,” Applejack said, stalking towards the door. As Applejack and Frost went outside, the rest of the posse moved out to watch.

“You ready?” Applejack asked.

“Mares first,” Frost said getting into a fighting stance. Applejack started with a light jab at Frost that he easily dodged. She kept up the offensive with slow attacks Frost danced away from.

“You know, for how tough you look, you throw pretty weak punches,” Frost said, dodging another off Applejack's hooves.

“Oh, I’m just getting started,” she said. Suddenly her left hoof barreled outwards, catching the sarcastic stallion on the side of his face. Frost staggered backwards, pulling himself out of her reach.

“That was pretty good,” he admitted, rubbing the side of his face. “Now let me show you what I can do.” Frost threw himself at Applejack, appearing to be going in for a heavy attack. The mare turned around and got ready to buck him right in the teeth. At the last second, the stallion slid under her, knocking out one of her front hooves.

Applejack swore as she tumbled over.Frost got up and dusted himself off. He waited patiently for her to get back up before going back into a fighting stance.

“Is that all you’ve got?” he asked.

“Nope,” Big Mac said, stepping in. His sister reluctantly backed down, taking her place among the spectators, which now included half of the ponies in the bar.

“Well, you are a big one,” Frost said coolly to the much larger stallion. Big Mac towered over the pony.

“Eeyup,” Mac replied as he started to advance towards Frost. The white stallion did his best to keep space between him and the red behemoth.

“I take it you don’t talk much,” Frost said, backing up almost to the rough circle the onlookers had made.

“Nope,” Big Mac said as he lunged forward, bringing a hoof down where Frost had just been standing. The smaller stallion had stepped to the side as soon as he had seen Mac move forward.

“Well, you’ll have to be a bit faster than than to catch me,” Frost said as he dodged another heavy swing. This continued a few more times, Frost managing once to knock out one of Big Mac's hind legs. As he tried to jump back to avoid the other massive hoof, a rope tightened around Frost’s legs.

“Oh, now that’s not fair,” he said as he fell sideways onto the ground.

“I never said that we would fight fair,” Applejack said, pulling on the lasso.

“Besides, we couldn’t let you keep makin a fool of us like that,” Braeburn said. "Disgraceful performance, that was."

“And what about you?” Frost asked Apple Bloom. “You haven’t said anything yet.” She smiled daggers.

“You have more important things to worry about,” Applejack said, pulling him closer.

“Well, I was going to keep this clean, but...” Frost said, pulling Applejack's hat over her eyes with his teeth. His head smacked under her chin, sending the mare sprawling. Braeburn was on top of him in a second, trying to subdue him.
Frost managed a quick jab to the ribs despite the still tight lasso. Frost hooked one hoof around the stallion, rolling over him and away from the descending hoof of Big Mac. The rope fell loose around him as he stood.

“This has been fun and all, but you're a little rough for my taste,” Frost said, backing away.

“Oh, you haven’t seen rough yet,” Applejack said menacingly.

Frost checked to make sure that the door to the bar was behind him before saying, “Then, by all means, let’s see how rough we can get.”


“What do you mean you can’t find anything?” Fluttershy asked the pack of timberwolves as they huddled in the clearing.One of them gave a series of whines.

“I’m sure you can find her, just keep looking,” Fluttershy said, and the pack got up and left.

Angel gave the gentle shade a stern look.

“Yes, I know that they probably won’t find them...” She said weakly.

Angel tapped his foot rapidly.

“I know, I know, but the manticore is still looking,” she said. "He might have stumbled across them."

Angel pointed off in a direction that led to a swamp.

“Oh no, I wouldn’t... I couldn’t...” she said.

Angel crossed his arms.

“Do we have to wake the hydra?” Fluttershy squeaked.

Angel nodded.

“Just... just give the manticore time to come back, I’m sure he will find them,” Fluttershy insisted.

Angel just sighed and went over to lean on a tree.


Frost flew through the door to the bar, almost smashing into a table.

"That rough enough for you?” Applejack called through the door as she and her posse advanced towards the now recovering Frost.

“Hey! I told you to take that outside,” the barkeep shouted. He pulled out the large hunk of wood again. "And keep it outside."

“Well, it just came back in,” Braeburn said.

“Hey, we're not just going to let a bunch of country hicks beat up one of our own,” said one of the ponies in the bar. The others were quick to join in; none of them had taken the invasion lightly, and all of them were ready for a fight. It didn't really matter who with.

“What did you just call us!?” Apple Bloom yelled.

“We called you a bunch of hicks. Now get out,” another patron said, moving to back up Frost. He helped the white stallion up off the floor.

“You asked for it,” Braeburn said as Apple Bloom lunged at the first stallion that had called them hicks. Latching into him, she began rabidly beating the patron.

“Ah! Get her off!” he screamed. The other had just grabbed a chair and was about to knock Apple Bloom of the first when he got bucked by Big Mac, sending him flying across the room, and into one of the many empty tables. Wood and bones audibly crunched.

Soon, a full scale brawl had broken out, complete with thrown chairs and smashed bottles. Glass, wood, and blood covered the floor. In the middle of the fighting Applejack and Frost were trading and dodging blows.

“I had a feeling it was you,” Applejack said, wiping the side of her mouth as the fighting reached a momentary lull. Only a momentary one, though. The chaos soon resumed as Apple Bloom moved on to her next victim.

“Had a feeling I was what?” Frost asked as he ducked a flying bottle, which continued on to smash against another patron's head.

“Honesty,” Applejack said, pulling out her knife.

“Whoa now,” Frost said, eyes widening.

“You’re comin' with me,” she said. "Dead or alive."

“Alright, just be cool,” Frost said, putting his hooves up in surrender. The fighting around them had calmed down again, revealing a barely scathed posse and several unconscious bar patrons. The bartender lifted his head up from his hiding spot behind the bar. Apple Bloom immediately pounced on him.

“We got what we came for. Let’s go,” Applejack said. "That means you too, Apple Bloom." The rabid filly dropped the bartender from between her teeth and joined her family. The four of them escorted Frost out of the bar, leaving the establishment in shambles and the barkeeper numbly shouting at them as they left. They walked out of the rundown district in relative silence.

“So where are you taking me?” Frost asked after awhile.

“We’re takin' you to the palace,” Braeburn said.

“Won’t Darkstar be surprised when we bring him a bearer first,” Apple Bloom beamed. Since the fight, she had been skipping the entire way.

“You sure you want to do this sis?” Big Mac asked in a rare moment of speech.

“What?” Applejack asked, stopping in her tracks.

“Give this pony up to him,” Mac said.

“We don’t have a choice,” she replied, hanging her head.

“Why not?” Braeburn asked. "It's not like he can kill us."

“But he has control over us,” Applejack said. “And if we don’t do what he says... well, some things are almost worse than death." None of them had been present for Shining Armor's torture in front of Cadence, but they had received an account of it. To assure their loyalty.

“Applejack...” Frost said, the epiphany dawning on him.

“Took you long enough to figure it out,” she sneered. "Guess you're not as smart as you make yourself out to be."

“Wow. You're a legend,” he said.

“Now you’re just flattering me,” Applejack laughed.

“But you are. A bearer of the Element of Honesty. One of the saviors of the Crystal Empire. Everypony knows about you and the other five,” Frost said.

“Coulda fooled me,” she said. "You thought I was just some outlaw hick."

“I’m sorry...” Frost said, hanging his head. “If you want me too, I’ll go."

“What?” three of the shades asked in unison.

“You’re willing to give yourself up?” Applejack asked, a touch of disbelief in her voice. "After that huge fight? I mean, you don't have much choice but..."

“You don’t know how little there is for me here...” Frost trailed off. "Maybe a change of scenery would be nice."

“When Darkstar gets you, you will be scenery,” Apple Bloom said. "Or maybe you haven't noticed the six empty pikes outside the castle?"

“Death is a change like any other,” Frost said, a slight hint of humour in his voice. "I'd say you're all 'living' proof of that."

“You’re crazy” Braeburn said.

“No. Just honest,” Frost said, starting towards the palace.

“It’s getting late,” Treble said to Candy as they sat watching the sun start to dip lower in the sky, shadows beginning to stretch around the relaxed ponies. Shadows and other, darker things.

“Aw...” she whined.

“Don’t worry. You'll still see me tomorrow,” he said, brushing a hoof through her hair.

“Ok,” she said, sitting up. Treble packed up the picnic and slung it and his violin case over his back.

“Let’s go,” he said, leading her back to her house. They walked slowly, laughing and talking, drinking in each others presence.

“Goodnight Candy,” Treble said, giving her a hug.

“Good night Treble,” she said, giving him an affectionate nuzzle. Treble left after a few moments of their embrace. As he walked by the cafe on his way home, Treble noticed a white mare enjoying a cup of tea. He waved hello, and she waved back.

“Hmm, quite the charming stallion,” Rarity said to herself as the violinist continued onwards.

“More tea madam?” a waiter asked.

“No thank you,” Rarity said, getting up. "I'm afraid I've somewhere to be." She followed Treble until he got to his house. She could have easily broken in; better yet, she could give old Spike-y Wike-y a call. But she had a better idea.


Darkstar was laughing uncontrollably, an unusual state for the dark alicorn.

“So this is the Element of Honesty’s bearer,” he said. “How amusing.” Frost and his captors stood before the dark lord's throne, the shades dutifully looking away from their twisted leader. Frost was the only one who met Darkstar's gaze.

“What’s so funny?” he asked crossly.

“That you would willingly doom the rest of Equestria by giving yourself up,” Darkstar replied. Frost looked away, out the arch balcony doorway.

“I could care less about Equestria.” he said quietly. "It certainly doesn't care about me."

“Now, this is a surprise,” Darkstar said. "I thought all you ponies were supposed to care about one another." The dark alicorn wiped away an invisible tear. "You must have such a hard life being so pessimistic."

“So what are you going to do with me? Lock me up, kill me, make me a shade like them?” Frost asked, ignoring the obvious jabs. "Your dry humour is getting in my very sensitive nerves."

“Hmmm...” Darkstar said, considering his options. "With that last remark, I think I'll choose door number 2."

“You could let him run with us,” Applejack suggested, butting in before Darkstar could make good on his remark."

“You mean allow him to serve me alongside you?” Darkstar asked incredulously.

“Well, we are both bearers of the Element of Honesty,” she said. "I think I can get him to... see your way o' thinking."

Darkstar rose from the throne and walked over to Applejack.

“You would risk my wrath by suggesting I let him go free?” he questioned.

“I’m sayin' that he could be useful to us in getting the other ones. And we would keep him from gettin' away,” she challenged. After a moment of silence, Darkstar turned away.

“Very well. Take Frost as a member of your posse,” Darkstar said, nearly spitting the last word. He sent out a tendril of shadow that wrapped around Frosts neck, forming into a kind of collar.

“What’s this?” the white stallion asked, poking the black collar.

“Insurance,” Darkstar said as the anomaly started to tighten around Frost's neck. He fell to the floor, gasping and clutching at his throat.

“Should you escape them, or betray me in any way, I will kill you,” Darkstar said, releasing the shadows. They faded away to a thin line of black that stood in sharp contrast to the white coat. Frost gasped, sucking air back into his lungs.

“Now, all of you, get out of my sight,” Darkstar said, sitting back down on his throne.


Soulless had meet up with the Lunar Guard, only about fifteen strong, and was now heading to Van Hoover in their newest airship.

“This one’s a lot faster then the old one,” the current head of the Lunar guard, Vigilant Night, commented. He was attempting small talk. Despite their reputation, none of the Lunar Guard felt that comfortable around Soulless.

“I can see that,” Soulless replied, now outfitted with a set of light armor and two hidden blades, one strapped to each hoof.

“So what was it like, being gone for more than a hundred years?” Vigilant asked.

“Boring,” Soulless said simply. They stood in silence for awhile, watching the setting sun.

“So how are we going to fight these shades?” the captain asked.

“You can use the cannons on this airship to provide covering fire while the ground forces fight,” Soulless said. "Draw their attention away from me."

“Why?’ Vigilant asked. "What are you going to be doing?"

“I’m going to go and take out Chrysalis and Shining,” Soulless said.

“You can’t be serious?” Vigilant asked astonished. “They’ll be surrounded by a sea of shades!”

“You forget who you’re talking to,” Soulless said. "And besides, I'm sure that with you fine stallions up here providing cover fire I'll be fine."

“I suppose so...” Vigilant said shaking his head.


“What do you mean?” Twilight asked Breeze and Flit. The two had been trying to find a chance to talk to her ever since Soulless had appeared.

“We think that maybe Rainbow Dash was looking for the Element of Loyalty,” Breeze said. The princess nodded.

“That would explain why she came here,” Twilight said. "If she is indeed under Darkstar's control, like we can assume, then he must have had her looking for her successor."

“This might mean that the other five elements are back as well,” Breeze said, his face darkening a little. "Pardoning your own, I suppose." Twilight looked distant for a few seconds before addressing the two of them.

“I gave up my element a long time ago. Thank you for bringing this to my attention," she said. "You are dismissed."

“What about finding the Elements?” Flit asked.

“Leave that to me. You two just go and build something else useful,” she said waving them off. "Celestia knows we need another golem," she muttered.

“Let’s go Flit,” Breeze said. The two of them walked down the hallway leading towards the lift. When they got down to the cavern Mixer was waiting for them.

“How did she take it?” he asked.

“She brushed us off,” Flit cried. "As if she already knew or didn't care."

“So, that’s how it’s going to be...” Mixer said.

“What are you planning?” Breeze asked, now wise to the golem’s thought process.

“It seems that we will have to take matters into our own hooves,” Mixer said.

“What?” they both questioned.

“There is a coming storm, and we must be prepared to face it,” Mixer said.

Author's Note:

Releasing this early because I want to get something positive done today.