The Masseur

by NachoTheBrony

First published

I’m happy today, but I don’t thank Discord for pulling me out from my happy life on Earth.

In order to ‘discord’ the Elements of Harmony, Discord had to switch their cores with those of creatures that were opposite to them. And later on, with Discord being rock, there was no way to send them back home.

This is the story of one of the six Antitheses of Harmony. One who had a life and was happy on Earth.

This story has gone on hiatus. Sorry: real life.

Chapter 1: Discorded

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Disclaimer: “My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic” is the intellectual property of Lauren Faust and Hasbro. This is a work of fiction based on this intellectual property with no profit intended.

The Masseur chapter 1: Discorded

I didn’t know what to think at first. Five minutes later, I was wondering if somebody had laced my food with drugs.
Last thing I remembered, I was sitting at a park bench, eating a choripan I bought from a street vendor and thinking about nothing at all. A blink later, I’m falling on my rump.
Ugly-middle-school instincts immediately kicked in, making me rise back on my feet in an instant, square myself and look around for potential attackers. Nobody was nearby, but I remained weary, looking around for people hiding behind trees and bushes.
In natural sequence, my professional instincts then kicked in, making my hands dance over my vest and holsters, pulling out and checking my notebook, then my primary camera, my two flashes and my wide-angle lens. It wasn’t until I was reaching back for my tripod that my surroundings really kicked in: ‘Where’s the park?’
I now actually opened my eyes and saw around: there were disperse patches of trees surrounded by grass, but there were no paved walkways or benches or even bare-earth trails, let alone the joggers, people walking pets and screaming children that had surrounded me just a few minutes ago. In fact, there wasn’t a single sign of human activity other than the half-eaten choripan at my feet.
Now spooked, and wondering if my choripan might have been drugged and I had been dragged and abandoned here, I began checking my various timekeeping devices:
My watch was reading 11:12AM, some ten minutes after the last time I had checked it, right before buying the choripan. The date was right, too.
I got the same result with my mobile phone, even if the time was off by a minute.
My primary camera agreed with my phone.
My secondary camera agreed with my watch.
I didn’t bother pulling my notebook, preferring to go back to my phone and check something else on it.
It had no signal.
Remembering about my phone’s almost forgotten functions, I fiddled with the menus and turned on the GPS receiver.
After standing there for a few minutes, I became convinced that my phone was really not finding a single satellite.
I knew at this point that I was simply screwed, so I kneeled down and inspected my fallen lunch. Thankfully, the wrapper had mostly saved it, so I picked it up, spat the first bite off the exposed side and ate the rest quickly: if I’m suddenly on some survivor situation and not even the GPS is working, then I have no idea when will I be getting my next meal.
Thinking about it, I then carefully licked the wrapper and folded it, thinking that the aluminium foil could perhaps prove useful at some point. Then I began inventorying the stuff on me, other than my photo equipment and wallet:
1) Here’s that novelty multitool I bought a few months back. After carrying around a Swisschamp for the better part of two decades, I decided I might find better uses for some real pliers and a mini tripod than for two saw blades, a micro-chisel and a fish scaler. You know, real survival tools.
Face: meet fist.
2) Three plastic bags from various supermarkets. You don’t want to be caught in the rain without a plastic bag to put on your camera, after all.
3) My pack of cigarettes, with a lighter! I may not smoke, but being ‘the buddy who always gives me a smoke’ has me listening in to a dozen rumour mills. Furthermore, being ‘a friend of a friend who’s a reporter’ has made careers, and while I haven’t struck big so far, my various ‘smoking buddies’ have already repaid handsomely by giving me a big rumour or pulling me through a backdoor.
Today, though, I’m happy enough with being able to make fire.
4) A set of dices. Specifically, I have two d20’s, two d10’s and six d6’s. Oh yeah, I had a D&D appointment for tonight.
Well, I guess they’ll take the pressure off choosing at random.
5) My key ring has a mini-torch. And I believe this is the last relevant article in my little inventory, other than ‘The Mysterious Island’, by Jules Verne, in my inner wallet pocket: perhaps the world’s most useless survival guide!
Well, gaining nothing more from staying where I had appeared, I resolved to go looking for high ground, then think what to do from there. So I picked a direction at random (helped by rolling high on four d6’s) and started walking.
I wasn’t disappointed: something like ten minutes later I found a dirt trail cutting through the grasses. Glancing both ways and finding nothing of special interest either way, I rolled another dice and turned left.
The trail didn’t disappoint: some fifteen minutes later, it had deposited me at the base of this nice-sized hill which, miracle of miracles, had no trees whatsoever! I climbed it quickly and looked around.
My bare eyes didn’t reveal anything of interest (except for a few pink clouds that I preferred not to think about), so I set up my tripod, then removed the hot shoe from my secondary camera, put in on my primary and began making good use of my zoom lens and a polarizing filter.
There! On the side of that lone mountain, I’m clearly seeing a castle!
Well… ‘Clearly seeing’ being relative through at least fifty klicks of atmospheric haze, but the sky-blue backdrop lets me unmistakably see the silhouettes of spires and towers jutting out from some building surrounded by a perimeter wall. Clearly pre-cannon warfare, and the longer I watch it, the more I think that it could have come out of Walt Disney’s head.
I removed my sight from there and continued scanning the horizon for some fifteen more minutes, but that one was the only man-made feature I could see in this otherwise untouched landscape. The occasional hill potentially hiding something of interest didn’t help, but at this point I hoped that wouldn’t be problematic.
With a destination now in mind, I walked down the slope and began reversing down the trail that had brought me here. I know some people would feel frustrated about having taken the wrong turn, but not me: an hour ago I was wandering, and now I’m going somewhere.
And I might have a two days hike ahead of me and no food or water on me, but I have had worse, even if not in recent memory. Besides, these lush forests and grasslands must hide creeks, so I’ll have water and perhaps even fishes.
Besides, the terrain’s anything but flat. These valleys could hide entire towns. This trail may not even lead me anywhere near that castle, but it’s too wide to be a game trail. One way or another, it’ll lead me to a human settlement.
In the end, I’ll be fine.


About half an hour later, I was surprised to notice that the dirt trail had suddenly turned into a sky-blue/royal-blue checkerboard. And it had turned into that like from one moment to the next! Looking behind me, I also saw that the trail behind me had turned into checkerboard as far as the hilly terrain would let me see.
Kneeling down, I saw that it was still the trail, but it had turned into the colours. I even picked up this pebble that was cerulean on one side and royal blue on the other, then tossed into a darker square and saw it turn completely royal blue the moment it hit the ground.
I wondered if it might have been a bad idea to eat the rest of that hot dog, but shock myself and started walking again. I tried to just focus on travelling and not think, thus noticing, but not fussing over the next hours the trail’s texture turning into rubber, the sky turning pink or a bunch of tutu-wearing buffalos flying by overhead.
Okay, I have to be honest: I wasn’t fussing, but I was still scared all the way to chicken shit! It came almost as a relief when this pink haze came zooming from ahead on the trail, enveloped me and turned my skin bright pink! But then, rather than be appalled, I seemed to lose the ability to remain serious and began making light of my situation. It was just like being continuously given a moderate dose of laughing gas, resulting in me being unable to remain serious, but at the same time not quite falling into hysterics.
It was on this over-cheerful state that the trail had me go around a hill and enter this village populated by Technicolor ponies!
I wasn’t in the most logical frame of mind, so I began hanging out and laughing it out as the town slowly devolved from a regular town into some opiate vision straight out of Salvador Dali’s head. I pulled my primary with the zoom lens, pulled my secondary and its wide-angle lens and began taking pics with utter glee.
I was trying a tricky zoom effect on an upside-down building floating overhead when I noticed that I had an onlooker that wasn’t hiding indoors. Turning around, I noticed this guy on a Hawaiian shirt and sipping a drink who was watching me work with a half-interested, half-amused demeanour. It came to me almost as an afterthought that the ‘guy’ seemed to be a Chinese dragon composed of a horse head and a mismatched menagerie of animal body parts. When this registered, though, I slipped a flash on my secondary, turned on and flipped forward the screen and began shooting at him.
He seemed to relish on the attention, giving me all sorts of cheesy poses and pulling all sorts of props out of ether: first he just pulled a straw hat to polish his Hawaiian outfit, but soon after he pulled a tailcoat, top hat and pimp cane (followed by a 1930’s tap rendition), then a full plate armour topped with him brandishing a herring, then a beehive-shaped blond wig and a pink flowery dress. I was having a great time with our impromptu photo session, partly because of his cheesy posing, partly marvelled at the raw fact of it being not-human, but also because I have worked previously with magicians and other performers and had never previously seen anybody with the ability to change costumes so thoroughly, so rapidly! Somehow, I didn’t really catch the fact that he really was using magic to change until I noticed his next outfit: brown shaggy wig, baggies and surf board, complimented by a full studio setup of a huge kiddie pool, a cheesy beach scene background, sun-bounce reflectors and a special effects fan as big as a large bike! Should I mention that I actually saw the whole setup shimmer into existence right in front of my eyes?
The low roar of a generator coming on behind the canvas and powering up the fan came up almost as an afterthought…
Anyway, I adjusted the reflectors, took my place and began shooting: being astounded is not something I ever let win over my professionalism, and I don’t think that my current happy-go-lucky demeanour would have really let my jaw hit the ground. Besides, this model was a dream-come-true!
Acid dream notwithstanding…
We did the shooting, both having a load of fun, until the draconic dude stepped off the surfboard and summoned a replica of my secondary, lens and flash included. I immediately stuck a ridiculous pose, but then felt like falling on my rump in laughter: while I know that a Canon EOS T4i is quite novice friendly (if properly set), it was quite clear that the dude didn’t even know how to turn on the camera. I stepped forward and helped him to get the camera going, first uncovering the lens and turning on the camera, then turning on the display into live-view mode, removing the definitely-not-novice-level flash and turning the camera into full-auto mode, and finally giving him a quick tour through the fine art of timer self-portrait.
My planned five-minute lesson rapidly evolved into a full-blown tutorial. I mean: I have had many opportunities to teach people how to squeeze a little more out of their cameras, but this dude seemed to just soak knowledge and learn on the first or second try, which was even more impressive if you consider that even hours later, we still couldn’t understand more than twenty words in common.
Something else that I just had to denominate as cool is that the dude seemed to really be able to do magic. I mean, the guy continuously kept pulling more and more stuff out of his hat: first he got his own tripod, then he started pulling all sorts of lenses on demand, whenever we reached the most I could teach with the equipment we already had on hand: he first pulled a fisheye when I was showing him the differences between normal and wide-angle; then he pulled a telephoto when I was showing him how to use zoom, and then I think he just wanted to amaze me, because he first pulled a super-telephoto as long as my arm, then he pulled a Sigma “Bigma” ultra-telephoto zoom! That last one just got me salivating: I had only ever seen it on magazines, a thirty-two grand, sixteen-kilogram, high-speed autofocus monster that can it look like you were there inside the racetrack, standing on the surf or on the next mountain over!
Quite frankly, I think that he may have been reading my mind to a degree. Come to think about it, I think now I know how comes he was learning just so incredibly fast.
Anyway, we kept at for around a whole afternoon (not counting him every now and then snapping his fingers and making Sun and Moon switch up in the sky), until he saw that I was just exhausted, so he conjured me a picnic basket, then stuffed the two biggest pockets on my vest with gold coins and shock it with me.
I was kind of disappointed at how abruptly he departed, but I rolled with it, shock him claw back and began following him with the Sigma and a super telephoto we had been playing with the last half hour.
He just walked to the centre of the valley down the hill and conjured a whole lot of stuff, then conjured a throne in the middle of it and sat down, like he was trying to make himself look like he had been busy. Not a minute later, these six ponies ran around me and met him down in the valley, then he conjured a target on his chest, they shot him a rainbow and he seemed to make a show of how painful it was to receive the ‘attack’ that he had opened his chest to receive.
And then, the rainbow transformed into a white dome that began shining incredibly hard. I had the presence of mind to turn the cameras away even as I shut my eyes from the sudden burn on my left eye. Keeping my eyes averted, I began to blindly blink, just trying to get the stars out, until I felt how the floor went missing under my right foot!
Well, my foot fell a grand total of a half-inch, but that was still unsettling… no pun intended: falls are the most common reason of equipment damage, and falling is definitely no fun when you are wearing and/or minding several grand in equipment! So I looked down and found that the tile I had been standing on had suddenly gone missing, reverting into grass. Even as I looked, another one nearby puffed away.
A loud splashing noise made me turn back: the kiddie pool had suddenly disappeared, releasing a small flood that the surfboard rode a few meters before both the water and the surfboard both turned into aether. The corny beach backdrop fell to the floor before disappearing as well. The generator went away, somehow making the extension cord start slipping into aether like a lit fuse, eventually reaching a print station we had on a marquee and making it and its entire contents blow away, except for dropping my notebook unceremoniously on the grass.
I can be slow at times, but sometimes I can add two and two without getting a five. Thus, I turned around again and tackled the two tripods down, rolling on the way down and using my own body to protect them from the impact. My frame of mind was simple: “If the Sigma goes anywhere, I’m coming with it!”
Ugh! Have I ever mentioned that the Sigma lens weights more than my niece? Can I also mention that the heavy tripod feels sharp against the ribs? Well, I wasn’t too happy, but I still clutched the two cameras, two lenses and two tripods with my whole body, like they were babies that would be torn from my arms any second.
First it was the super telephoto: it suddenly started shaking. I clutched it as hard as I dared, and after an endless couple of seconds, it settled down again. Next came the guy’s camera. Then came the heavy tripod. Then, the Sigma…
Once this last one settled down, I released a breath that I didn’t know I had been holding. I released the equipment, belatedly remembered to turn off the cameras and the Sigma, and sat up, watching as the light show eventually died down a few minutes later.
And so I had my first look at this place, without the place looking like something out of some surrealist’s canvass: it was some quaint, idyllic little village, normal except for the tons of free-ranging, Technicolor, Shetland ponies, and the apparent lack of inhabitants.
“Wait! Didn’t I just spend an afternoon teaching a dragon-horse-something how to take pictures?”
And then I actually looked at them, and after a few seconds I understood: the ponies are the inhabitants of this town. After all, I have never seen livestock have hushed conversations while looking at me, point at my stuff and me when they think I’m not looking, and bombard me with all sorts of negative emotions rather than just fear, anger and/or indifference.
So I began packing up the stuff, thanking that the Sigma’s and the heavy tripod’s carrying cases had stayed here along with their charges. So I slept the night there, sleeping under the starts for the first time in, I don’t know, like a decade.


Come morning, I was woken up by something prodding my leg.
Upon opening my eyes, I found that a winged pony in brass Roman-looking plate armour had prodded me, wearing a pretty displeased expression. Sitting up, I saw that several copies of him apparently surrounded me.
I didn’t need to understand their language when the first one growled something at me: I could easily guess that I was now detained.

Chapter 2: Am I arrested?

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The Masseur 02: Am I arrested?

Well, other than in Australia and Canada, I don’t think I have ever seen any police, army or whatever be so polite about a detention: the leader first waved me down when I offered him my wrists and pointed at the chains on his side, then called for a gilded carriage to pulled up the hill and had some of his grunts gently help me load my stuff on board, then ordered the small company into formation and gave a marching order.

By the way, there’s a detail that I hadn’t really registered: these soldiers are all winged. The last order of the superior had everybody open their wings, then take a short running start and take off.

I believe I must mention that I’m quite acrophobic. This explains why I screeched horribly the moment the wheels left the ground, making the carriage (and the whole company) come crashing back into the ground. The leader approached it again and found me cowering inside the railing.

Inwardly, I was half reeling from the scare, and half reeling from my reaction. I mean: I know I absolutely hate to be high up, but I usually endure by closing my eyes and waiting for the ride to be over; on the other hand, now I had just had a panic reaction! And well, as the leader approached the carriage again, I saw that my hands were something else than white-knuckled: my skin was still pink! Through my embarrassment I managed to mimic wings flapping and shake my head at the leader. The leader patted my shoulder, said something that sounded soothing and gave some other orders that once again got the company moving, now with most of it on the ground.

I finally regained my dignity as we were rolling out of the town and into a forest. I took note of my surroundings: the winged ponies around me were in a curious formation: four connected to the front of the carriage, four following it a few steps behind, the leader marching by the vehicle and four hovering above our heads.

It was analyzing these last ones what really gave me pause: their wingspans are barely as long as their bodies (nose to base of tail), and rather than be slender as cranes or flamingos, they were as thick and stocky as, well, Shetland ponies; never mind the plate armour they were wearing. So, by any logic, their wings should be beating away as crazily fast as hummingbirds’, rather than just sticking them out like frigatebirds or vultures riding a nice wind current. Should I mention that these condor-sized wings were supporting the glide not of a twelve kilo New-World Vulture, but a quarter ton of Shetland horse, plus however much that coat of armour weights? Should I also mention that they were slowly bicycling their hooves, and I could distinctly hear a low clip-clopping sound coming from above?

Eventually I quit staring: It wouldn’t be good for my sanity. I tried to entertain myself looking at the countryside, but I couldn’t stop thinking: now that I had mostly sobered up from yesterday’s insanity, I had to face that I seem to have fallen out of my reality and into a world populated by a civilization of Shetlands.

Wherever these guys were driving me to, the drive would be too short, and too long.


About two hours into the drive, the leader shouted something, and the little parade paused. It was apparently a rotation order, as the guys in front unhitched themselves from the carriage and moved to the back, the guys flying above landed and got hitched, and the guys behind lifted off and took the above position.

Considering that I had been doing little else than think in circles for a good hour, I decided to get off, so the little exercise could help to clear my mind.

Besides, the heavily gilded carriage was freaking me out.

So I took off my vest, opened the latch on the side of the carriage and called the attention of the leader. Then I pointed at myself, at the ground and mimicked walking with my fingers. He nodded at me and stepped a little further away; I smiled and climbed down, then closed the latch and just stood there. The guy shouted something, and we were again underway.

Just as I had been seeing, the ponies were moving at a clip slightly faster than the human norm, but not too fast for a fit guy like me to maintain.


About two hours later, I was about ready to step back into the carriage when we arrived at a small roadside campground, where our little parade stopped. I found it quite remarkable: a small fault in the terrain had apparently formed a nice, five-meter waterfall. Then, some engineer had decided to tame it, first pulling it away from the cliff-face via a few arches and then making it feed a bunch of basins, showers and even a small pool before letting it return into its natural creek. And around the tamed waterfall, we had a grassy clearing the size of a small stadium.

Just a few orders were given, and soon the troop was taking turns between four orbiting above, four grazing on the grass and four tossing their armours, stepping into the showers and even dunking into the pool.

By the way, something else that boggled my mind: the WHITE soldiers would stop being white as soon as their armours would come off. And then, once their armour was on again, they would be white again. I pulled my eyes away from the baths, though, trying not to boggle my mind too much.

The leader eventually gave me a nudge, then gestured me to take my turn with him on the waterworks. I could feel enough eyes on me when I went to the drinking basins and rather than dunk in, cupped my hands and caught water from the trickle feeding it, then as I got naked, stepped into a shower, shock the water off the best I could with no towel and got dressed again.

Once he stepped out of the pool and turned from red back to white, he pulled me to the fields and pointed at the grasses, his mouth and me. I in turn pointed at the grasses, then at my mouth and imitated gagging. He frowned, then gestured me to follow him to the carriage, where he opened a small trunk off the back of it and produced a few apples. I took them with a smile, which he returned before turning back to the field and his own lunch.

Ten minutes later he shouted a few orders and the company assembled again. This time I climbed on the carriage and gestured him that I would be okay with flying. He gave me a searching look, to which I replied by pulling off my belt and rolling it around my head, covering my eyes, and sitting very still.

A few seconds later the leader gave an order, then the carriage accelerated and I had to bite back a whimper as I felt how the vehicle became disconnected from the ground.


An eternity later, somebody nudged my shoulder.

Uncurling slowly from the shivering mass I had become on the floor of the carriage, I pushed up my belt and saw that we were back to solid ground.

I accepted some help as I was pulled out of the carriage and onto a cobbled surface. Slowly looking up and around, I saw that we apparently were in a gardened courtyard at the palace I had seen yesterday in the distance, at least judging by the multitude of towers and spires in view. Also in view were a lot more soldiers than the squad that had picked me up, looking at me inquisitively from the walkways up the outer wall. Much more friendly looks were directed at me by my escorts and by the few apparent civilians dotting the garden.

I had been given a little time to collect my dignity, but I was eventually nudged to move once some clerk-like female came down from the palace. The guys helped me to collect my stuff, even two of them offering to help me carry around the Sigma and the video tripod (the heaviest items), before I turned to follow the lady around the castle and into an apparent event hall.

The hall was huge and beautiful, but amazement at works of art is the first thing that an art critic becomes trained out of. Thus, I could immediately focus on the apparent assembly on the centre: a circle of something like a dozen beanbags surrounded inconspicuously by a ring of soldiers. A ‘zany’ bunch of humans occupied five spaces to one side:
The first one (to the right) was a blue-haired, purple-skinned oriental guy in an ugly suit and a cheap tie.
The second one was a lump of blubber with rainbow hair, royal blue skin and a Led Zeppelin t-shirt.
The third one was an orange-coloured prune in cardinal-red robes.
The fourth one was apparently a Chinese noblewoman, considering her silks and tiny shoes, except that she also had paper-white skin and amethyst-coloured hair.
The fifth one was pink haired and had butter-yellow skin, but also had the uniform of a 15th Century Spanish infantryman: a Conquistador.
And the five of them seemed to be high on something strong: one would say something and the rest would laugh, despite me recognizing at least four different languages on the group: Japanese from the oriental guy, some type of Chinese from the old lady, English from the blue blob and Cervantine Spanish from the Conquistador and what I could now identify as an Inquisitor.

And I was being guided to the cushion following the Conquistador, but I detoured and sat on the opposite side, by the purple ‘sarariman’. The clerk lady didn’t precisely smile when she noticed that I had given her the slip, but didn’t say anything and let me sit. Then the couple of escorts that had followed me from the carriage left my stuff by me, gave me a reverence and walked away.

With nothing better to do, and no intention of joining the ‘discussion’ of the ‘zany bunch’, I let my eyes wander over the hall: it was truly a beautiful structure, even if some features, like the glass walls shuttering the outer arches, clearly where poorly matched add-ons. Somehow, I found my critique to be hilarious and started giggling. This attracted the attention of the purple Japanese, who apparently asked me what was so funny; I replied in Tepito Spanish, a dialect that the Spaniards were not going to understand. The Chinese lady replied in Chinese and everybody, me included, laughs.

Somehow, I had been sucked into the collective insanity.


After hours of non-communication and senseless laughter, a new group marched into the hall and up to us: six pony mares that looked mostly unremarkable except that, somehow, they looked like they had been turned into greyscale. I managed to push down my senseless mirth and stood up to welcome them into the circle, but I was beaten to the punch as one of them raced ahead and pulled me into a silly dance.

Halfway down the dance, my skin started fuming a thick pink mist, which then landed on my impromptu dance partner. Soon enough, my dance partner was pink with magenta hair and, looking at my hands, I saw the beautiful sight of my reddish-bronze skin colour. I wasn’t allowed to wonder on it, as the now pink pony continued pulling me on a happy dance.

How could it grab my hands using her hooves, anyway? And how was she standing so easily on her hind legs, towering slightly over me and even so managing to remain completely unthreatening?

Anyway, she was eventually scolded and made to sit on one of the opposite cushions. The one who scolded her then approached the purple fellow and stuck a hoof to his chest. The process was slow, but eventually the purple mist disappeared and the fellow’s purple tones had been transferred to the mare.

The process continued without a hitch, apparently following the sitting order, but by the time the Conquistador would have had his turn I had sobered up enough to see that the fellow had his weapons with him: a blunderbuss, a sword and a spear. I had also had time to see how the colour-transfer had been affecting us: I had my usual rock-solid self control back in place; the Japanese had become subdued and had adopted the kind of smile that I had come to recognize from Japanese tourists on a tour: a neutral smile and passive pose that was meant to try to blend in the background and not attract attention; the fat man was staring at the ground and had an expression that looked between dour and constipated; the Inquisitor had hardened his face and was seemingly deciding to get angry; the Chinese noblewoman was still blinking, but she was also turning aloof and trying to sit on her beanbag like a throne. Thus, I had every reason to worry about what an average Conquistador’s bloodlust could do, especially if an Inquisitor was here available to give orders.

Therefore, I looked back at the ring of soldiers and, waving my hand near the floor, discretely got the attention of a bunch of them. Then I waved them closer, gesturing with my head at the Simpson’s yellow soldier while I also pulled off my ‘normal’ tripod and shrugged off my vest, preparing for anything ugly happening on the other side of the circle.

As usual, Spaniard ugliness rarely disappoints: the yellow mist had barely vanished when the Inquisitor jumped from his seat and, pointing at the now yellow pegasus, shouted at the Spanish soldier:

“Desenvainad vuestra espada y atravezad a la hechicera, idiota!”
{“Unsheathe thy sword and run the sorceress through, you idiot!”}

The soldier blinked a couple more times, but then he shock his head and made to pull out his sword. I surged out of my seat, but was beaten by a mile by a couple of pony soldiers jumping clear over my head and pushing him down before even half of the sword had been unsheathed. A lot more ponies then surged in and seized the Inquisitor and me, but I was quickly cleared and let go, while the two Spaniards were dragged out of the place kicking and screaming.

Once things settled down again, one of the other ponies kept consoling the yellow one while the rest huddled together to converse, and we humans just sat back, waiting for something to happen.

These four mares apparently reached a decision, as they eventually stood up and made for us to follow. The guards quickly pulled up a palanquin for the Chinese lady, two more helped me with my extra equipment, and we then followed the mares back into the gardens, around the palace and up the main entrance, where we first entered an entrance hall, then a hangar-sized throne room.

We were quickly ushered up through the disperse crowd and deposited at the foot of a dais. Up on the dais, there where two thrones, one gold and scarlet and one silver and midnight blue, on which were seated a properly-horse-sized white mare and a smaller, dark-blue mare. The ponies who had guided us in bowed down in reverence; I hurried to bend at my waist, but then glanced at the Japanese guy by my side, who was nearly kissing the ground, and corrected into a knight’s genuflection: I laid down on my knees, pulled my tripod off my back and stood it on end in front of me, then laid my hands crossed on it and curled down my neck until my forehead pressed on top of my hands. And I also tried to make my movements as exact and economical as possible: I may not be a trained warrior, but our hosts don’t need to know that.

In due course, a gold-clad hoof nudged my shoulder. Looking up, I saw the white queen standing in front of me, smiling at me and gesturing for me to stand back up. I did so, rapidly slinging back my tripod and thanking that I had literally had hundreds of repetitions of slinging and unslinging my tripod to make it look perfectly martial and natural. The queen turned to make raise the Japanese guy, then the Chinese lady (who, still sitting inside her palanquin, had bended down and was grabbing her ankles), and finally the tubby one, who, rather than vow down on reverence, had sat down on the floor and just bent down his head.

I think I detected a hint of mischief on the queen’s face as she made the lardy boy stand up without assistance, but he eventually managed and her face returned to a serene smile. She then turned to the purple pony and one of the soldiers and spent a few minutes in discussion with them. Finished with this, she returned to her throne and, after calling for attention, made some pronouncement while pointing at us humans.

From the back of the crowd came a couple of apparent maids (judging by the fact that they were the first ponies I had yet seen wearing aprons), and they led us away from the throne room, up a few staircases and hallways and finally to some quarters. One of the maids guided me into one of them, which could well be described as some ambassadorial suite: a combination of study and tearoom connecting with a bedroom, a bathroom and a balcony, and all of it so heavily ornamented that it just felt like somebody had been trying to make a point of just how much budget can be spent.

Yeah: a typical awe tactic usually used on visiting dignitaries. After watching the white queen naked but for a plain tiara and collar, looking grand rather than many grandiose characters I glanced at in her throne room, I could imagine her scoffing at this flamboyant façade of an apartment and living in a sensible suite.

So, once I was left alone inside this gilded abomination, I sunk into the bed and let my mind wander around a simple question:

“So, if I am really stuck in this pony world/land/whatever, what will I do?”
At least I knew I would be treated favourably, but that only meant that my mind didn’t wander into darker… possibilities.

Chapter 3: My reputation goes through the crapper

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Personal Journal, Day 31 since appearing at the Land of Talking Equines
Earth’s Date: September 14, 2012, according to my watch.

(I know I’ve been writing a journal every other day, but this being the one-month ‘anniversary’, I want to make a recap.)

The Holy Shit:
It’s weird how people can gain the trust and esteem of the locals, but it certainly seems that I have done so. The current occupants of the castle do seem to make a big deal of it, from the white queen apparently having made a pronouncement about me (in particular), the black princess taking some interest on me, the scholars pulling me into their discussions (despite me still not understanding almost anything of the local language), down to the maids smiling at me wherever I go and slipping chocolates on my bedclothes.
Or should I better say ‘starting by the maids and up to the queen’? I guess this last assertion fits better, considering that this invention should make the maids not have to empty chamber pots anymore.
Yeah: I ‘invented’ a modern toilet.
I guess I should explain: I arrived at the castle exactly thirty days ago. I don’t remember too much detail about that day (my mind was completely in turmoil, after all), except for the fact that the highly ornate bathroom adjoined to my highly ornate suite had every non-electric convenience… except that, rather than a toilet, it had a chamber pot.
It blew my mind that these people could have the conveniences of indoor plumbing, thus have faucets, showers and bathtubs here, but prefer chamber pots to flushing toilets! Nevertheless, I needed to go (I hadn’t since using an outhouse at the campground with the escorts that picked me up), so I had to squat for the first time in… at least two decades!
Thankfully, they did know about toilet paper, after a fashion: square-cut pieces of apparent newspaper, punched through a corner and hanging from a conveniently placed hook on the wall.
Ten minutes later, after thanking the convenience of a pedal-operated faucet, I was opening the writing desk on the studio.
An hour after that, after much cursing the effect of quills on left-handed writing, I had a readable schematic sketch of a conical basin connected to a U-bend and fed by a water cask, which was both filled and flushed through pedal-operated valves.
An hour after that I had drawn a comic as an explanation of how to use a toilet, and showed it to the maid that later came and wheeled in my dinner.
The next day, the apparent head maid came and read my comic strip, then looked through the bunch of sketches I had finished by then.
Two days after that, a commission of a dozen maids and two soldiers had escorted me into the city down the mountain and into a pottery shop. Six hours later, the actual potters escorted out about half of the contingent, considering that they didn’t want to wait for the clay to dry before being fired.

By the way, I should mention that there are three types of talking equines: pony-sized donkeys, which seem to just make a drop in the bucket of the population; winged unicorn horses, which I have only seen two: the queen and her young princess; finally, ponies, which make the lion’s share of the population. These last ones are classified in three: plain ponies, pegasus ponies and unicorn ponies, which can use magic. And this explanation was relevant because: Unicorn potters seem to specialize on a very useful spell: something that dehydrates the clay for firing!

On the seventh day since my appearance in this land, this castle’s very first toilet was installed in a broom closet affixed to the maids’ rec room. It was not fool proof (after all, I had to design on the fly a small horse-sized toilet), but the maids were still exceedingly happy with it. And they were very pleased with me as well, considering that I stopped using the chamber pot altogether, visiting the maid’s rec room two or three times every day.

The very next day we had to install a tower pipe (like a 19th Century toilet), but it hasn’t failed ever since.

A week after that, while I was working with the linguists to try to make sense of the local system of measurements, the white queen had me summoned into her (…unsurprisingly modest…) chambers. She discretely returned my reverence, then guided me to her rest room and pointed me at her barrel-sized chamber pot.
The next ten days had me sweating bullets: the second toilet I had to design in my life, and suddenly I’m already on “offer you can’t refuse” territory! Never forget the additional handicaps: nobody knowing my language, no measuring tools I could read and a general technological level pointing at Ancient Greece (judging by the apparent lack of waterwheels and windmills).
Considering that I understand that royalty can be petty, and that I rather enjoy having a head on my shoulders, I overbuilt it as much as I could: the bowl is large enough for me to hide in it, and the water doesn’t get simply fed onto an upper ring, but half of it is jetted down eight nozzles pointed forty-five degrees counter-clockwise (so they wipe the bowl), the other half shooting forty-five degrees up from a fifth nozzle at the very bottom of the bowl, force-feeding a monstrous S-bend and making it create a low pressure to help it suck up… ahem… the royal waste. A two-storey pressure-building aerated pipe, fed by a twelve-or-so-gallon tank, feeds the beast. And, have I mentioned that the bowl sticks about a meter into the ground, almost as much as it sticks out of it? Or that the potters and me had a minor panic attack when we noticed that the monstrous bowl would not fit inside the kiln, only alleviated when the potter’s guild produced a brick-making kiln?
I wonder what would Soviet naval engineers think about somebody designing a toilet inspired on their rocket-powered, supercavitating torpedoes. I’m sure, however, that ANY engineer would be either excited or alarmed at hearing it roar. The white queen certainly seemed pleased at hearing the sound, as she immediately pushed me and the assisting architects and bricklayers out of her bathroom, let us wait a few minutes until we heard the roar again, and then put a fat sack of gold into my hands.
I tried to distribute the money among my helpers, but none accepted. The linguists have tried to explain me: so far, I think that the money was intended for me.

That was a week and a day ago. Today I attended a ceremony at the throne room, being about unveiling a stained glass window celebrating how six young ladies turned the dragon-chimera-guy into stone. I should mention I met them a month ago: they are the six ladies that leached the crazy colours and crazy attitudes out of us humans. Later on, at the reception, the pink one pulled me again into a crazy dance, much to my chagrin but not to my annoyance. The group then assembled again and gave me reverence for saving the yellow one from the Spaniard soldier.
They shouldn’t be thanking me. The only think worse than Spaniards would have been early British settlers.


Language lessons:
From our first full day at the castle, me and the other not-imprisoned humans have been having daily classes with what I think are linguists, followed by the group being led to a dining room for a buffet lunch, then followed by the group breaking up and an instructor following each of us into our individual suites for a short one-on-one instruction. And it may have been a month, but none of the four of us have been making much progress toward understanding or speaking the local language: both Hikaru (the Japanese) and me have enthusiasm but no luck, Shi-Pun (as I think the Chinese lady is called) is rather disinterested, seemingly expecting the ponies to suddenly start understanding her orders, and Robbie-the-blob seems to simply be lazy, much to everybody’s irritation. I also wish that constant practice would make my face stop hurting from trying to pronounce this vowel-poor, grunt-rich language.
Not everything is going badly, though: while speaking the language is still a distant objective, both Hikaru and me have begun making strides into written mathematical language. The glyphs keep confusing me at times (considering that this is worse than Roman numerals: it’s like Aztec, where a given glyph represents a magnitude rather than representing magnitudes by the order of the glyphs), but Hikaru has drawn me some nice quick-reference tables; I, in return, have been teaching him how to do arithmetic on this Mayan-like base-20 number system, something that Mexican nerds tend to learn for fun. Besides, the Mayan numeral system has such an incredible intrinsic logic that I’m frequently doing operations on a purely visual basis, later having to do a conversion so I can understand what I just did in Arabic (occidental base-ten).

By the way, talking about Floppy-Robbie, I think I’ll request him to be put on a diet as soon as I can say that much, thus convince the people here that no, he isn’t getting ready to hibernate. I think it will serve him right for all the times he has ask me “what did she say?” ever since he discovered that I’m a perfectly fluent English speaker, and that I am actually trying to learn the local language. I should also mention that Blubber-boy has me convinced that no, he isn’t sick of anything that would make him fat? He claims he is, but that’s pretty unconvincing after watching him stuff his face.


Another project I’m working on involves creating a metric system. While this country does have a system of measurements, it’s so… medieval… that even the people who have been living here all their lives have trouble using it:
(1) Cloth merchants and their clients both carry their own measuring sticks, and seem to haggle more on which stick to use than on the price of the cloth.
(2) While small distances are measured in measuring sticks (which are about 1.2m long) and smaller distances are measured in hoof-widths (which change from pony to pony, but hover around 10cm), long distances aren’t even measured as such: travel is actually measured in days, so much that there is an ordinance stating that there has to be a campground every half-day of travel!
(3) Grain vendors carry their own measuring stones, but these are not standardized. Also, people cannot buy what they need, but rather need to buy a ‘unit’. Much haggling follows.
(4) Fruit vendors don’t even bother having scales: the fruits are sold by the piece. I can understand that working for cantaloupes, grapefruits and even apples, but I find it ridiculous when I’ve gone to the markets and have had to count cherries. And those cherries were pricey and sour.
(5) While there seems to be some standardization in bakery, as all buns look the same, I’ve seen that there exists ‘the baker’s dozen’, which can mean that the bread standard is shaky at best.
In the end, it is all a mess!

I just hope to actually get on with working on it: the only time I could actually make any progress on it was the time between installing the maids’ toilet and the queen asking for her own: I managed to create a standard meter (derived from my height of 1.805m), then was working on making a thirty-centimetre ruler when the queen dropped me her little bombshell. And while I’m done with the queen’s porcelain throne, now I have apparently been inducted into the potters’ guild (considering that they gave me a collar like all of them wear, and now expect me to wear it whenever I’m with them) and can’t get them to stop taking up my time by making me look at sketches and decorations.


Who’s who:
So now I’m making a summary of the people I’ve met? What, don’t I feel that spending an hour between writing and waiting for ink to dry is enough time waste? No: now I’ll have to go through my past journal entries, just checking for mentions of anybody I can’t remember from the top of my head.
Well, lets see…
• The dragon-chimera guy I met inside that Salvador Dali town, that now ‘lives’ inside the sculpture garden in the castle’s west courtyard.
• The six young ladies who turned him into stone. I especially remember the funky pink one, although I don’t think I’ll ever forget the adorable little yellow one who I saved from the Conquistador. I don’t think anybody will be forgetting them anytime soon, anyway, considering that the throne room has them immortalized in stained glass.
• The white queen and her marine-blue princess. But what’s up with their thrones being side by side and the same size, anyway? And why is it that the princess is rarely seen to begin with?
• The soldiers: the longer I look at them, the more I envision them as Buckingham parade ponies rather some Praetorian warhorses. Enough said.
By the way, I believe that I’ve been calling them ‘soldiers’ in all of my entries so far. Do you really go calling ‘soldier’ somebody who may not be able to fight their way out of a paper bag? I think that, from now on, I’ll call them ‘guards’.
And now I’m glad of having decided to do this recap, even if I started it just because I get crazy from having nothing to do after hours. If I ever get home again, I’ll never take for granted my Kindle again.
• The maids: I’ve never seen more than a dozen at any given time, but I’m certain that I’ve seen something like two dozen different faces wearing those aprons and caps. There may be more, though, considering that their rec room has forty lockers and all of them are closed.
• The linguists: the six ponies that have been trying to teach us horse language. Their names still remain unpronounceable (and trying to write them using the Latin alphabet is nothing but frustration, as attested by my first couple of journal entries), but their efforts have yielded that I have some rough translations of their meanings: He-Who-Reads-A-Lot, Stacks of Books, She-Who-Cuts-Quills, He-Who-Listens-Well, She-Who-Talks-A-Lot, Bottle Of Ink. The first three ones seem to be into their forties or fifties and all exude an attitude akin to senior professors; the three other ones are young adults and seem to be apprentices or interns. Our daily class has the six of them only one time every seven, with us having five teachers a day the remaining six. Is this some sort of rotating rest day? And is this also proof that ponies have a seven-day week, or is it simply a coincidence that we perceive a seven-day rotation the caused by us having six teachers?
Something else that I’ve been capable of learning from the teachers is sexual interaction: both Bottle of Ink and Talks-A-Lot seem to be in a relationship with Good Listener, yet they seem to be cooperative rather than competitive toward each other, either taking turns or giving each other the space to be with him. This looks like a bigamic relationship, but I cannot discard the possibility of this being a very subtle competition, where both girls are pressuring him to choose. This could also be some sort of domination: while he seems to be good sport, I can’t remember anytime when he takes the initiative, and I can’t forget that geek in my high school that got picked up by two girls as a homework-doer.
• My fellow humans: Hikaru was a sararyman (office worker) in some Japanese corporation, and his last memories of Earth have him on 1992. Robbie was is a morbidly obese emo teenager, American, and comes from 2022. Shi Pun is impossible to communicate with, but I know she’s Chinese and, judging by her bound feet, she must hail from no later than 1930, and possibly centuries earlier. The Spaniards down in the dungeon aren’t uniform, either: the Conquistador was apparently looking for El Dorado and disappeared from Francisco Pizarro’s group as they traversed a jungle in 1542, while the Inquisitor was in New Spain judging against ‘heretic Indian witch doctors’ in 1712. Considering that I was removed from 2012, I first suspect that there’s a pattern and Shi Pun must have also been removed from a year ending in 2.
A second pattern I’m finding among our group is much more disturbing: none of us can be considered as exemplar human beings by any extend of the definition. Robbie is an amalgam of everything I despise about apathic teenagers, and especially of people who choose to become morbidly obese and then demand society to deal with their self-provoked disability. Shi Pun doesn’t only have another self-provoked disability, but also conducts herself like everybody but the queen is beneath her notice. Luis Ernesto, the Conquistador, proudly states his allegiance to a gang that made itself famous for exterminating whole villages just for sport. The Inquisitor, Padre Rui, hails from an institution that made pathological lying, victimization, terror, torture and hate-crimes into a way of life. I know I look normal (except for being stern and grouchy), but I know I am a borderline sociopath and would likely be an assassin if my life circumstances had been different. It’s worrying that the best adapted of us might be Hikaru, who happens to have as much personality as a windsock: a vacuous smile that’s always following the current.
Could it be that we were brought here because of our ‘imperfections’, rather than despite them?


Personal inventory:
My gosh, I am really bored! Well, I’m not going to list every item I own: I’ll just point at the inventory I made on my first full day at the castle, then I will list the stuff I’ve acquired since getting here.
I arrived with: the clothes I was wearing (jeans and a full-weight kaki shirt, plus my underwear), some Italian-styled shoes, one of my favourite cargo vests, a leg holster, a ton of photography equipment, a notebook, a few trinkets (like my wallet, my multitool and my keychains) and a book.
I got from the dragon-guy: the Sigma, an extra camera, an extra tripod, a telephoto and two pocketfuls of gold. I wish I had the fish eye and one of the generators he appeared, but those disappeared. And without the generator, all of my electronics (except my watch) are useless.
The white queen has given me: another fat load of gold, and two pronouncements.
The maids give me: tons of little gifts, mainly consisting on chocolates. I make sure to eat a few everyday and leave out the empty wrappers, but that doesn’t stop my candy stash from growing by the day. I wish I knew how to tell them that I would trade all the chocolate in the world for having a glass of milk with my supper, but I fear that could be offensive. Do these people have livestock, other than the hens that must be laying the eggs they must be using for bakery purposes?
The palace got me made: five sets of copies of my clothes, and two sets of indoor slippers. I don’t even know when were my clothes or me measured or studied, but on my third day in the palace I returned from lunch and found the first set (and a hamper), then found the remaining two days later. They don’t feel anywhere as durable and the colours are just wrong (Canary-yellow trousers, anybody?), but they don’t stand out against the colours of the various locals, their cut is tasteful, and sure beat having to wash my clothes every night.
Stuff I’ve bought:
• A bunch of trinkets, mostly survivalist-oriented. I guess that you can take the man out of the grinder, but you cannot take the crazy hobbies out of the man.
• Two pairs of shoes, which are well-intentioned experiments I commissioned from a farrier and a saddle-maker. The ones from the farrier have little grip and are far noisier than I feel comfortable with, and the ones from the saddle-maker suffer from non-leather and non-petrochemical materials, being little beyond glorified slippers. If nothing else, I may need to commission another set from the farrier, then send them for finishing with the saddle-maker. That, or I will ask Hikaru where did he get his wooden sandals.
• Socks, which I had to look for like crazy and finally found on a shop that had a feeling of being lingerie oriented. I don’t know who would ever buy woollen lingerie, though.
• A light cloak and a rain poncho. Two days ago I found this shop with a sign of an umbrella under a snowflake and immediately marched inside. I left behind ten gold coins and an intrigued tailor, and have two receipts that I’m supposed to change tomorrow.
• A safe. As it happens, the head maid at some point guided me to a shop with a sign of a piggybank. I then had to insist to pay for it myself. The next day, some technicians came in real early and bolted my safe to some metallic slots I hadn’t noticed on the floor on one of the corners of my bedroom. And if I didn’t believe in magic by then, I had to believe now: the safe is keyed to my blood! The outside of the door has no other feature than a handle, but on the inside there is a slot where the techies inserted a paper slip with a drop of my blood. Remove the slip, and anybody can open the door; put it back, and the handle will turn uselessly unless it is I turning it.
I wonder if someone could make me bleed and then have the handle work for them, but I prefer not thinking too much about that.


Ah… what the heck!
A brief description of the local’s anatomy!
Well, let’s go in order:
1) The donkeys look like small donkeys (duh!), except for their foreheads being full and their eyes looking smart.
2) The queen and her princess: the queen is perhaps the largest horse I’ve ever seen, being more easily comparable with the size of a large camel than any horse. She also happens to be perfectly white (I could swear she glows from within!), and her mane and tail, which always are billowing like they were floating in water, seem to change colour depending on which angle you may be looking at them. I haven’t seen much of the dark princess, except that she’s slightly larger than the ponies and still looks adolescent, meaning that she’s still growing. And they both have a horn and wings.
3) The ponies: I think I should refer to them as ponies, considering that, while they don’t look anything like stunted, goat-sized, petting zoo animals, on average they only weight twice as much as I do and their shoulders only come up to my navel. Just like the donkeys and the royals, they have bulging foreheads and expressive eyes. They come in every colour (with a prevalence of pastels among females) and in three varieties: with wings, with a horn, or with neither.

Curiously enough, what I find the most fascinating about the ponies is their hooves: the hoof itself is pretty much what you would expect from a giant fingernail, except for being semi flexible (it can close from the omega shape to a full circle); what is fascinating is the stuff in the middle: like a thin and delicate layer of skin covering a thick gel, which they can harden with a thought. By closing the hoof they can then push out the gel-pack, and by hardening it they can grasp stuff. It would sound like a weak, clumsy grasp, but given evolution and generations of practice, I see maids picking up platters and pulling sheets, nobles picking up teacups, children on the street tossing and catching balls, and your average pony having a much easier time than your average human at the simple task of picking up a coin from the floor.
Simply fascinating

And I still have no idea what to think about the butt tattoos on the royals and the ponies. I’ve made many hypotheses, each weirder than the previous one. I’ve finally decided that I will avoid thinking about them until I can actually read the dictionary; so then I can understand the answer.


And finally…
I continue being plagued by the following question:
Are we prisoners here?
This comes from the fact that all of us humans live under constant surveillance. While my own guard has been taken over by the housekeeping department (except at night), all of us are kept under constant watch by a number of guardians equal or greater to our own number, and none of us is ever separated from our guardians by anything thicker than a door. And even inside our individual suites, we are watched: I’ve discovered that the balconies are locked at night (so I can’t use the Sigma for stargazing), and whenever I open mine during daytime, the outer wall guards keep looking at me like hawks.

I can certainly imagine a few “happy” explanations why we are kept under a microscope, but I’m not putting money on any of them.
I just hope I can gain everybody’s trust at some point.

I also hope that, if I make my way through this world, people will eventually forget about me inventing toilets. Please, Horse World: remember me for metrication, or for any other thing, but if you want to remember me for the crappers, please be kind enough to just forget my name.

And now it’s past midnight, and I'll be woken up for breakfast shortly after dawn.
Oh, joy…

Chapter 4: Prayers to the porcelain god

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Personal Journal, Day 32 since appearing at the Land of Talking Equines
Earth’s Date: September 15, 2012, according to my watch.

Picked up the cloak and rain poncho. I’m pleased with them, and will likely commission that same tailor again before winter.

Also bought some alcohol, just in case I need it tonight.

Personal Journal, Day 33 since appearing at the Land of Talking Equines
Earth’s Date: September 16, 2012, according to my watch.

Yesterday I bought a little cask of something strongly alcoholic that smells of apples. I had bought it to have a private celebration of Mexico’s 202nd Independence Day, which incidentally coincides with my grandpa’s 18th death anniversary.
I couldn’t drink, though. My grandpa wouldn’t have wanted us to remember him in sorrow. Thus, the only sorrow I went to bed with was knowing that, back at home, my mother and my friends must be fretting about me, wondering if I’m a John Doe in a hospital, a slave in a sweatshop or a pile of maggots in some ditch.

I was mopping around all day today. Despite my efforts at acting like my normal, sullen self, it seems that the entire castle noticed, with Hikaru patting my back, the teachers skipping my personal lesson after lunch and the maids apparently clearing out my now-customary, thrice-weekly meeting with the potters.

I’m lucky to have people here who can see beyond my usual saturnine disposition and see when I need some help. I just hope that tomorrow I’ll be back to abnormal, so none of my friends decides to kick be back into gear.

By the way: how much I wish that those potters could just get the idea of running their own businesses, rather than trying to get my input in every little design variance. It isn’t like they were actually trying to sculpt them differently: why do I even need to know about porcelain colours and flowery paintings?

Personal Journal, Day 36 since appearing at the Land of Talking Equines
Earth’s Date: September 19, 2012, according to my watch.

Okay; today I became convinced that Bottle-of-Ink, Good Listener and Talks-a-Lot are indeed a triple item: Inside the castle, you usually find them moving in a pair plus one following, but today I saw them heading out after our classes. The weather was rainy, so plenty of people had raingear. The girls seemed to have forgotten to bring any, but when Good Listener offered them his poncho, they rather put it on him, then slipped under it and crossed their heads across his upper back.
I’m not sure if I can really put it into words just how hot that was: they essentially blinded and muffled themselves, then disoriented themselves and surrendered to him.
He certainly caught my eye: he gave me an utterly shit-eating grin, then started moving away in an unmistakable Spanish strut.

I am utterly discarding my hypothesis of the girls being domineering on him: now I think he’s just shy or something.
One thing I can say: as soon as I’m done writing this, I’ll hit the books as hard as I can and will not go to sleep until I can formulate the following question:
“How hard did you fuck the girls last night?”

{unreadable} jiurn… jour… {ink stain}… churnal… eh… Diary!
Day 37 (I think) in Uma-shi, as Hikaru calls this place.
(And darn be the {ink stain} Japanese: he can call it “horse city” and still make it sound polite, just like he calls the inhabitants uma-jin (horse people) and makes it sound so right!)

After lunch, I pulled Good Listener, Big Reader and Hikaru into my room, broke open that cask of hard cider I had bought for September 15, then made sure that Goody boy had a drink before I asked him how had he solved the “one boy and two girls” problem.
The {ink stain} wouldn’t tell.

Im’ writing this ‘cause I’ll be damned if I remember anything that we are doing. This drink goes down like sweet beer, but kicks like strait tequila.

I {unreadable}{unreadable} not as drunk as I think I am, ‘cause {unreadable}{unreadable}{unreadable} in the morning!

Big Reader got stuffy and left early. Hikaru is laughing under the table. Good Listener is singing off key and I’m surprised at not having gotten merry rather my normal lousy.
I’m such a lousy drunk. But not today.

Hikaru’s barking! That’s {unreadable}{unreadable}{unreadable} stain!
And it stinks!

Good Listener is howling!

I’m {ink stain} {unreadable}{unreadable}{unreadable}

{ink stain} {unreadable}

And to the fuck with so much toilets, and no decent toilet paper!
{unreadable}{ink stain} {unreadable} Bidets!
Yeah! This{unreadable} {unreadable} needs bidets!

{unreadable}, I’ll {ink stain}-ving bidets up the ponies of {unreadable} potters guild!

{ink stain} {unreadable}{unreadable}
{unreadable}{ink stain}{ink stain}

{ink stain} potters!

Personal Journal, Day 38 since appearing at the Country of Equines
Earth’s Date: September 21, 2012, according to my watch.

Waking up underneath Good Listener is not the best way to start a day: any pony weights much more than we humans, and he spent the night across my back.

Being hung over is bad. I hadn’t gotten sufficiently drunk to achieve a hangover in like seven years.

Having gotten totally sloshed with only two glasses is even worse. The drink was so sweet that I thought it was just like a sweet beer, and I thought that my beer limit would apply here.

Having Reads-a-lot frown at us and at the girls all morning was the worst. I wonder if I made a snafu and invited somebody’s in-law or father, or if the old one simply is a prude.

Anyway… after classes, I had another freaking meeting with some potter representatives: they wanted me to choose between purple flowers and red flowers. I made a show of choosing by rolling a dice.
I think it has been my most productive meeting in the last two weeks.

And tomorrow I’ll have to track down which of the maids had to pick up Hikaru’s vomit. While the vomit was his, it was my room and my party. All of the maids have been looking at me somewhat stiffly today.

Personal Journal, Day 39 since appearing at the Land of Ponies
Earth’s Date: September 22, 2012, according to my watch.

Today’s lesson, after the typical daily two or three hours of vocalization training, turned toward world politics. As it turns out, this country is the land of ponies: neighboring countries are inhabited by griffons, pony-sized donkeys, camels, desert horses and pony-sized zebras, plus semi-nomad populations of whales, minotaurs, bisons, dragons and sea drakes. Beyond the oceans there are some minor continents, one for elephants, one for penguins and one shared between pandas and foxes, but their landmasses are minor in comparison. And yes: the world is fully explored, as attested by a globe showing the different landmasses and a spattering of minor islands and archipelagos scattered over the vast oceans.

Something else to notice: the ponies dominate their continent, with the other countries only controlling minor swatches of land here and there, not being close to being 50% of the continent all combined. If we then add the minor continents, we end up with them not adding up to a landmass half as big as this one. Thus, ponies control a third of their world.

Thus, I made a toilet for a monarch who despises luxury and opens her court for farmers and labourers, yet holds more power than the British Empire ever did. Empress she is; despot or tyrant, she is not. I have resolved one thing: I will gift her with every piece of science and technology I can pull out of my head. She will know how to responsibly administer it. She would even make sure that Novel’s invention never leaves the mines.

By the way, I couldn’t ask which maid cleaned up my room, so I have been looking at them all throughout the day and kissing their hooves. As the old saying says: “You may go displeasing everybody, but the cooks.”

Personal Journal, Day 40 since appearing at the Land of Ponies
Earth’s Date: September 23, 2012, according to my watch.

Yesterday’s campaign to regain the maids’ favor seems to have worked: they are once again smiling at me. They also brought me a little cake with my dinner.

Now all I need is milk: without it, I could barely swallow that triple-chocolate abomination.

Nothing else to note today

September 23, 2012, Supplemental:
It’s 2AM, according to my watch.
I forgot going to the bathroom before bed, so I woke up in need to do so.
In my way back, I found it odd to see the throne room illuminated, so I diverted and found Court to be in session, although presided by the dark princess rather than the white queen. The composition of her court is also quite different: while the queen’s court seems to be oriented toward the service of supplicants, this one seems to be oriented toward bureaucracy, with the princess levitating several tomes around her throne, working an abacus furiously and dictating numbers to a nearby scribe, and the floor dedicated to a number of desks with bureaucrats working abacuses and pens. Around her, a several dozen ponies, sitting in an equal number of desks, were busy flinging beads on abacuses, scratching quills on parchment, running to filling cabinets and pulling papers from inboxes and into outboxes. There were also a number of gophers pushing trolleys, emptying outboxes, refilling inboxes and rushing to and fro a sorting desk in the middle of the office floor.
It’s funny to think that the medieval throne room of daytime looks to me at night like a historical representation of a late 19th century cubicle floor. In fact, if it weren’t for the fact that all the furniture (but the thrones) rests on wheels, I would have a hard time believing this to really be the same empty floor where the queen holds court.
I didn’t hand out for long, considering that I was falling asleep on my feet, but I was impressed.
I’m currently formulating a few hypotheses concerning why the two thrones are arranged as equals. I will not dive into the subject right now, but I needed to write this entry down before I fall asleep again.

Note to self: invent both calculators and typewriters. And also think hard about how to make a keyboard that can be worked with hooves and still isn’t as big as a whole desk.

Second note to self: introduce Hikaru to the Night Court. I suspect he’ll take to it like a fish to water.

Third note to self: don’t bother showing your metrication project to the queen. Show it to the princess. And start working hard on getting a presentation ready!

Personal Journal, Day 45 since appearing at the Land of Ponies
Earth’s Date: September 28, 2012, according to my watch.

FINALLY! I finally learned how to explain the concept of royalties!
I skipped lunch completely: I just went straight to my room to pick up my potter collar, then raced to the guild’s president shop and gave him my terms: I wanted them to work on their own and just give me royalties. I asked him for a proposal that they could find agreeable.
Some six hours later, after getting scolded for outrunning my escort for the day, then finishing with today’s private lesson and having an early dinner, I had to attend a meeting at the potters’ guild. The whole membership was there, offering me a 10% royalty, artistic control over the product and that they would only sell toilets to the rich.
For a moment, I thought I might have mispronounced something on my counteroffer, considering that everybody just kept sitting there, looking like… well, I don’t really know how: I said that I wouldn’t accept more than 5%, that I wanted each artisan to make their own decorations (although I did want some involvement on real R&D) and that I wanted toilets to be from very luxurious to very simple, so every family could have one.
The cheering started after a while, but it soon rose to an uproar.
It took me like twenty tries before I managed to slip out, something like an hour ago. I believe that it definitely didn’t help me to be half again as tall as any of the locals. Something that did help, though, was that the punch had pears floating in it, and as I appreciate not becoming violently sick, I managed to remain dead sober while the meeting devolved around me into a rave.

In the end, though, I won: the potters took my entire evening today, but they will stop smothering me from now on.

Now lets see if I can remember what was that other project that had me concerned…

Personal Journal, Day 55 since appearing at the Land of Ponies
Earth’s Date: October 8, 2012, according to my watch.

Today’s the day: I will go down to Night Court and demonstrate the Metric System to Princess Moon. I have two-dozen visual aids, starting by an excellent Cartesian presentation. I have all the props I could need. I also have confidence on myself.
I will rock tonight!

October 8, 2012; Supplemental:
At the last second, I got cold feet: it isn’t only that my command of the local language is not enough to satisfactorily explain my demonstration and then answer questions: while my demonstration so far takes into account the four primary measurements of the metric system (length, area, volume and mass), but the very moment I saw her (and her crown), I remembered the Archimedian density-finding experiment.
I am thus underprepared.
Besides, I also wanted to make a few calipers, but in my rush, I hadn’t even started working on them.

Personal Journal, Day 60 since appearing at the Land of Ponies
Earth’s Date: October 13, 2012, according to my watch.

Today being a day multiple of thirty, I should be making another recap, but not much has happened this last month: Hikaru and I continue to learn the local language and customs, Robbie continues getting rounder, Shi Pun continues screeching gibberish at people, the Spaniards continue festering inside their dungeon (and they do fester, considering that the guard has to forcibly bath them once per fortnight), and the world continues to rotate.

Something that I would have wanted to put on the recap would have been my presentation of the metric system, but I got cold feet at the last second. I’m still trying to get a water vessel large enough for the crown, and with an efficient overflow spout. I may end up getting made a metallic bucket with a teakettle spout.

Oh, and the potters delivered the first two-dozen toilets yesterday. They gave me my royalties, which I immediately spent on a cask of liquor that I had then delivered to the maids’ rec room.
And when I went there to use the bathroom before bed, I found out that the day queen had also sent a cask, and hers was as large as an oil drum.

Needless to say, breakfast was late today.

Chapter 5: Buzzed

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~Cornbread Chip~’s Personal Journal, Day 81 in the Land of Ponies
Local date: ~Autumn 42, Year 2 of the Fourth Era~
Earth’s Date: November 3, 2012.

I’m starting a new format today: I will start using my new pony name, and will start dating my journals according to local date.
I may have known so for a good week now, but the best translation for my name is “Tortilla Chip”. On the downside, I think the local word ~cornbread~ doesn’t actually mean ‘tortilla’, but something more akin to being a generic word meaning ‘bread made from maize’. On the upside, though, it makes sense within local naming conventions; the ponies can pronounce it with no problems (rather that keep mangling the word “Nacho”); and it’s a lot better than trying to go by a literal translation of my full name: “set on fire/idiot” “lawless man”, “son of the man who makes flower arrangements” “kingfisher of the open field”.

The date line translates as ‘42nd day of Fall season, 2nd year of the 4th Epoch’. And the local date format is rather peculiar: like old Japanese format, where the ruler can choose to reset the calendar after a significant enough historical event. As I understand it so far, the First Epoch was the reign of the “Old Queen ~Faust~ the Civilizer” (the mother of the current princesses), lasted some four thousand years and ended with her death. The Second Epoch thus started being counted: the current rulers were apparently infants at Year One, so the kingdom apparently dissolved into anarchy and a classist society, until the ladies had matured enough to take power (apparently they were officially crowned in 437 2ndEpoch). The Third Epoch started on Summer Solstice of the year 1981 of the Second Epoch, when the two princesses waged war on each other, resulting in Solaria banishing Selene. And now the Fourth Epoch began two years ago, when Selene returned from her banishment on Summer Solstice, Year 1000 of the Third Epoch.

I don’t know if the princesses are really immortal, but I have seen them doing the feats of actually raising and lowering the sun and the moon. Either that, or they are such incredibly powerful illusionists that they can nudge their apparent positions by several tens of degrees, making sundials useless. In short, they are as good as goddesses as far as I’m concerned. Besides, in a world where magic is real, I can’t dismiss the possibility of immortal, living goddesses.

By the way, I would know that sundials are useless: I tried making one to mark teatime (5 PM twice a week, which is the moment when the kitchens ring a crystal bell organ and castle life dies, and which is kept accurately enough through mechanical clocks that I could set my watch by it), then discarded it in disgust after a couple of weeks.

Ah, and to think that, for the longest time, I thought the Night Princess to be the daughter of the Day Queen. Today I learned that they are sisters, and equals, and their royal titles actually mean ‘Princess’ rather than ‘Queen’.At least now it makes sense to look at the two equal thrones in the throne room.

And, just to underline the issue: the two empresses who control a third of their planet, do not claim the title of empress or the title of queen: they only claim titles of princesses, and thus their humongous empire is officially a principality!

Have I mentioned that I feel humbled by these princesses? That their humility makes me feel like a heel? That I feel confident that when I start to invent explosives, these will not be weaponized outside of utmost desperation?

~Behold Princess Luna!~
(All Hail Princess Selene!)

~Behold Princess Celestia!~
(All Hail Princess Solaria!)

Whatever: I will be going to sleep shortly.
~My herd protects me.
I am safe.
I need not to sleep-stand.
I can ride my bed rather than pull it as I travel to the Dream Realms.
May my dreams be safe from the Nightmare.~
This rhyme apparently is equivalent to a child's bedtime prayer:
"Now that I go down to sleep
I pray the Lord my soul to keep
If I die before I wake
I pray the Lord my soul to take.

On a related note, I seem to be holding my alcohol better. Not much, but better. Hikaru was feeling down, so I put him under the table. Or however the English expression goes. Or, as the pony expression goes, ~watered him until he would drink his own piss~.
I also made sure that Good Listener didn't pass out on top of a human this time.

~Cornbread Chip~’s Personal Journal, Day 85 in the Land of Ponies
~Autumn 46, Year 2 of the Fourth Era~
Earth's Date: November 7, 2012.

ERRATA FROM YESTERDAY: Ponies DO have explosives. I’ve seen fireworks being used. It is just that gunpowder has not been weaponized.

Today I had a rather… interesting experience with Princess Solaria: after closing court, I saw that she needed a massage, so I provided it.

My hands hurt at the moment (trying to knead her neck was like trying to massage a waterlogged sandbag) so, provided that I’m not arrested, I’ll be writing a better description tomorrow.

~Cornbread Chip~’s Personal Journal, Day 87in the Land of Ponies
~Autumn 48, Year 2 of the Fourth Era~
Earth’s Date: November 9, 2012.

Indeed, I was arrested. Some white-on-blond metrosexual noble had me pulled out of lunch yesterday and dragged me to the dungeon. I didn't quite get his rant (between his posh accent and his rapid-fire ramble), but I got that he was choleric about me having abused the princess, putting her through a “commoner's after-bath”.
Thus, I learned that massages aren't completely unheard of, but that they are considered undignified.
I got around twenty-four hours before I was officially released, plus some six more until I actually decided to walk out. I also got to see how much favour I have gained around the castle: first, the rest of my lunch followed me to the dungeon almost as soon as I came down. Later, nobody even insinuated a negative when, less than an hour after I had been imprisoned, a contingent of maids came down to the dungeon and added creature comforts to my cell (starting by an incensory, to quell the Spaniards’ stench). Then dinner came to my cell: the maids made a point there to feed me like a king, even bringing down tablecloths, candelabra and a few spirits that they browbeated me into drinking.

And they browbeated me into drinking, deeply. I never tried to make a secret that I will obey a matronly lady, and here I had a half dozen of them acting like I was a misbehaving child that would refuse to eat his broccoli. I never had a chance.

I got up hung-over this morning, refused a mostly alcoholic breakfast and weathered my hangover until noon, when Princess Solaria appeared inside the dungeon dragging the upstart noble, tossing him into the cell in front of mine and, in plain view of him, arranging with me to have a weekly massage appointment. She also told the warden that the upstart was to be imprisoned twice as long as I had been, and that I was free to go whenever I wanted.
Once she left, the warden made to open my door, but I asked him not to, and requested that a message was sent to Princess Selene that I would be imprisoned until she released me.
And a little before dinnertime, she arrived. She was quite bemused and looked like she had just woken up, so I just told her that her sister had just contracted me for weekly sessions of ‘muscle relaxation exercises’ and that it would have been unkind from me to not offer her a free session before talking about duplicating the service contract.

Thus five days from now, before dinner, I will be guided to the Royal Apartments to provide a massage to the Night Princess. Which also means that for the next five days I will be panicking, trying to come up with tools and techniques that will provide a regular human the leverage necessary to give a full sized horse a proper Swedish backrub.
I currently wish I had ever bothered to check how Kobe cows are raised: Kobe beef is considered the world's very best, bar none, because the cows receive periodic massages throughout their lives.

I think that, so far, the only bad thing about me having been imprisoned is that I had to spend a long time in proximity to the Spaniards. Thankfully they avoid speaking to me (the hypocrites call me the mutually-exclusive labels of “barbarian” and “heretic”), but I still had to meditate just to keep my mind away from them.
I can’t figure out which of them I hate the most: the Conquistador is from Francisco Pizarro’s expedition, a gang that went down in history with personal average body counts rising into the hundreds.And what a justice they faced for their atrocities: Pizarro himself ended up as viceroy to Peru once the colony was established. The Inquisitor, on the other hand, could be worse: his institution had three hundred years of subjugation to burn all indigenous knowledge and to trample their spirit until my ancestors, once proud engineers who invented land reclamation in the 11th Century and built “The Rome of the New World” in the middle of a lake, were barely good enough to do mediocre pottery inside adobe huts. And never forget that their systematic extermination of “demon worshipping” medicine-men dropped life expectancies from 70 years to 40!

Whatever. I just had a luxurious supper of eggplant and tubers on apple caramel, chased down by a flute of sparkling cider. I miss meat, but I can also say that I love the food here.

And I am not sure if I need to say it again: the alcohol here goes down like liquid silk, but it then hits as hard as a boot to the face!

Chapter 6: Things looking up

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~Cornbread Chip~’s Personal Journal, Day 120 in ~Equestria~
~Autumn 81, Year 2 of the Fourth Era~
Earth’s Date: December 12, 2012.
Fourth month recap.

Yeah, I haven’t done recaps concerning months two and three, but I didn’t feel like there was a lot to recap on: just how Hikaru and I continued to adapt to ~Equestria~, continued learning ~Ponese~ and continued to inject science and technology into ~Equestrian~ life.
Well, while I continue to inject science and technology into ~Equestrian~ life. Hikaru continues to swim in the bureaucracy like a fish in water, part times as my lab assistant and continues to nag me about reinventing all of the office machines from a pre-computerized environment.
To be honest with myself, I’ll be lucky if I can recreate typewriters, modern paper (the local paper is much more akin to amate paper (Aztec bark-derived parchment)), ballpoint pens and copy paper, let alone the Xerox effect so I can recreate a photocopier.

About the language courses: we still receive some six to eight hours of classes a day, but the focus has moved away from language and more into general education plus some 20% of language. Works for me: I find ponies to be fascinating. Also, because of Hikaru’s nighttime occupations and Robbie’s new activities (which only allow him to be with us two hours per afternoon), our classes have been shifted to the afternoon, and only five days a week. And Shi Pun is no longer taking them.
And considering that we are now learning language through the language, we got beyond the need of being taught by linguist and into being taught by normal teachers. I miss being taught by Good Listener and his two lady friends, but I compensate by dragging Hikaru to visit him at least once every ten days, or having him visit us in the castle.

About Robbie: he’s steadily loosing weight. That on itself is a story, as I have put on several previous entries. Summarized: on Day 95 or so I had a full physical examination, which now included a careful interview by the doctors. Among many things, they asked me if I knew why weren’t Hikaru and me gaining weight ahead of winter. I replied that, contrary to what Robbie may make them think, humans are unable to hibernate. I didn’t know at the time, but that detonated a storm of behind-the-scenes talking than, a week later, ended with Robbie being evicted from the diplomatic halls and into and empty dormitory in the guards’ garrison, and then being forced by spear-point into running around the parade grounds. I just then had to laugh when, three days later, a new generation of recruits joined Robbie inside his dormitory and all of them started boot camp. Since then I have had many talks with the doctors and the drill sergeants, making sure that they get their money’s worth out of him, without utterly breaking him. I have also been talking with the garrison’s blacksmith and, as a prototype, he made me a Roman plate armour and a tower shield. And I know that, some time next week when the new recruits receive their armours, Robbie will learn for sure that I’m very much involved with his current living arrangements and may be out for my blood.

I’ll have to remember to tell him that he’s welcome to kick my ass if he can keep up with me on a race. That should give him some motivation.
On the other hand, I think I won’t say that: he is, after all, being put through boot camp, while I haven’t had an appointment with a bicycle or a treadmill in 122 days. My dietary discipline may be keeping me from gaining weight, but other than my hands and head, I’m definitely getting soft.

I think I have to invent myself an exercise machine. That, or put my arse in gear, go to the parade grounds and actually do some exercise.
If I’m honest with myself, I know that would go and make an exercise machine just to have the excuse that “it isn’t perfect, yet” and thus not use it. Damn it.


I’m starting an exercise program tomorrow evening, after classes and before dinner. I can’t let myself go floppy.

About Shi-Pun: the teachers had given up on her a long time ago, considering that she couldn’t be bothered to even try to learn to communicate. I’m not even sure when was she dismissed from class and evicted from the apartments, but I do remember that I enjoyed something like a week’s worth of blessed silence before I noticed that she wasn’t there in her usual corner. She currently lives in a room next to the kitchens, where she peels potatoes and does other simple tasks that can be done from a chair.

And the Spaniards: they aren’t our concern anymore. On Day 103 at dusk, the two princesses orchestrated a huge spectacle for them, visibly pushing around the Sun and the Moon, and then gave them a hearing (with me acting as translator). The hearing was brief: the Spaniards refused to even give them a little respect, and the princesses decided to banish them. On Day 105 at sunrise, a military caravan took them away. And three days ago, the caravan returned from the border with the nearest dragon territories, reporting that the Spaniards had been shoved across the wall’s gatehouse with three days worth of food and water and two flint knives (my suggestion).
Now, if I remember last month’s geography classes correctly, these dragon territories are broad expanses of desert dotted with volcanoes and crawling with predators. Thus, if we are lucky, those bloodthirsty bastards may not be anybody’s concern by now.

Good riddance.

And I can scarcely believe how much they came to affect me: the day of their departure I braved the mid-November sunrise wearing nothing but a loincloth and some body paint. I then tapped my own blood, painted it on the wheels and bars of the wheeled cage, then a touch on the hooves of the pull team and a little on the forehead of the leader. I then went to stand between the princesses and let myself continue to drip blood until the caravan was out of sight. At that point my plan was to visit the castle’s infirmary and then go and start my normal day, but my emotions took the better of me and collapsed and started wailing.
Quite frankly, I find it freaky in retrospective: I had had many opportunities to cry bitterly in my life, but I always cried quietly. Even In my grandpa’s funeral when I was eleven or so: there I was in the funeral of the most important person in my life, and I found a corner rather than make a show. And here, a good twenty-one year later, I lost all of my hard-earned emotional control and just went and let myself collapse.
The princesses came down on me and began nuzzling me. I awkwardly hugged them back (after all, their necks (especially Solaria’s) are much thicker than my whole body) and cried until I could regain control. Once there, Princess Solaria made a comment under the assumption that I was sad to see them being wheeled away. I cured her of her assumption: I was devastated about me not having had the fortitude to have been fair to them and give them back a little of the hate that they had grown among my ‘tribe’. Then I spoke for about an hour, detailing everything I could remember: locations and bodycounts of famous massacres (including the most infamous one that our Conquistador had to have been part of, where Pizarro’s army entrapped 10,000 Quechua pilgrims inside a plaza and killed them all), a 95% population decrease between 1500 and 1600, bits and pieces of scientific knowledge that had been know to my ancestors but that modern science had barely begun to understand, an irrelevant accounting book being treated like a sacred text because it is among the half-dozen Aztec books that survived the burning libraries of the Conquest and the witch hunting of the Inquisition, the religious-excused slavery system, medicine men being ‘processed’ by the Inquisition for the crimes of healing people and promoting hygiene practices that were much more advanced than those practiced in Europe in the 19th Century...
Day Court was delayed an hour that day. I think I might have fallen asleep, spent, on top of the princesses, because I later woke up around noon inside the Night Quarters, inside the sweet embrace of the wings of Princess Selene.
My hand’s shaking, damn it! I can’t finish the recap today.

~Cornbread Chip~’s Personal Journal, Day 121 in ~Equestria~
~Autumn 82, Year 2 of the Fourth Era~
Earth’s Date: December 13, 2012.

Not much happened today, except for remembering that, if my father was alive, it would have been his birthday yesterday. As I’m writing this, I’m sipping some hard cider, toasting to Death’s ghost for having taken the devil back to Hell.
May the devil burn in Hell.

Okay, lets finish the recap:
About the metrication project: after I finally got the potters to stop kissing my ass, I could finally get my ass in gear and present a Metric system of measurements to Princess Selene, who became completely enamoured with it. About three months from now, the Royal Crowns will emit an edict introducing a new system of measurements applicable to commerce, land management and education, and placing a time limit (something like five years) after which all other systems of commercial measurement become illegal. I’m not completely happy with the chosen labels,but at least I know that the system will not only be standard, but also science-friendly. The system goes like this:

A millimetre is a royal touch, centimetre is a royal nudge, a meter is a royal step, a hundred meters is a royal jump and a kilometre is a royal flight.
A gram is a royal feather, a kilogram is a royal hoof and a ton is a royal weight (despite me later finding from the doctors that Princess Solaria actually weights some more).
A millilitre is a royal spoon, a litre is a royal flagon, a hundred litres is a royal barrel and a cubic meter is a royal bath.

The first problem, and the need for the ridiculous labels, is that the system is decimal, while the local number system is vigesimal. I’m far from being a mathematician, and the princesses are happy with it the way it is, so it stays, but I’m wondering how it will affect the development of science once it rises from the current alchemy and ‘natural philosophy’.
The second problem is that, so far, there are no submultiples, leaving lesser measurements to be made using fractions. Princess Selene and I have already had conversations about it, and have come up with two progressive plans: first, we have in reserve three submultiples, in case trade has a need for them: the royal tear (a microlitre), the royal eyelash (a milligram) and a royal hair width (a micrometre). And for future scientific development, I’m already starting to dictate a book that she wishes to distribute to mathematicians, alchemists and universities, where I detail the inadequacies of the current labels, the eventual convenience of discarding all labels other than the bases (the step, the feather and the flagon) ands go into hard math about the behaviour of decimal unit measurements, multiples and submultiples. I hope they first have a good understanding of decimal notation before they try to tackle the yotta- to yocto- table, considering that it is untranslatable into vigesimal notation.
Uh… wait!
(Note to self: retitle the book as “The advantages of numeral systems not based on cycles of 20”, then make the existing book into its first section and include a second section on binary (and octal and hexadecimal) being convenient for telecommunications and machine language, and sexagesimal being convenient for radial geometry.)

About the telegraph project: Considering that the decimalization has now moved beyond science and into bureaucracy, I had been left to my own devices to find some other project to work on. There I thank Jules Verne: he gave me the idea of building a telegraph, which came to push into the backburner the typewriter, which is still far too complex to feasibly achieve. Something else to thank Mr. Verne about is that he largely described how to draw wire, a process where I would have lost weeks-to-months before I could have found the way. Something that I did have to figure out on my own, though, was how to make isolated wire, but it only took me a week to think about dipping the naked wire through a cauldron of this molten resin that woodworkers use as glue.
By the way, a very valuable offshoot from the project is wire-drawing. It’s kind of hard to believe, but it seems that wires are a rarity and had to be forged when needed.
Something annoying is that I had to create a Morse code from scratch. It isn’t like we could have used Earth’s Morse code (first, relying on a different alphabet, and second relying on my memories of a code that I haven’t used since I left the Boy Scouts), but it was still an annoying thing to do.
So far I have spewed seven versions of the code, each one covering a flaw found on the previous one. The first one had 47 symbols, representing the 45 letters of the ~Equestrian~ alphabet, a comma and a period. The second had 48 symbols, with the first one being a number symbol (and numbers being dictated through an equivalent tabulation of the first twenty letters of the alphabet). Version 3 had 50 symbols, including two for “Yes” and “No”, considering that the Equestrian language only has a word for each concept, but these words are long, thus inefficient for telegraphy. This led to Version 4, a behemoth of 95 symbols, including a ton of common usage words. It took me a day or two to see reason and decide it was unreasonable to expect people to remember a seven-bit binary notation, thus leading to Version 5, which only had 52 symbols including one saying “Code” and a SOS, which I hadn’t included in previous versions. The “Code” symbol thus led to a tertiary tabulation based on the alphabet which, although it translates again into the common-usage words, can be transcribed as “@A” or “@I” without having to instantly remember to translate into the words “Princess Selene” or “Princess Solaria”.
And, by the way, I am putting the word for the night princess ahead of the word for the day princess. I am a suck up, and I’m unashamed of it.
Versions 6 and 7 have been minor improvements over 5: Version 6 was simply the deletion of ‘filler’ words (pronouns, augmentatives, diminutives and the like) and the inclusion of ‘mood’ words (happy, sad, angry, etc), which I thought would be useful in diplomatic communication. Version 7 is what I got from asking Good Listener for some feedback: after explaining to him how the number and code tabulations worked, he very much insisted that I also created a tabulation of three letter codes. I hadn’t wanted to start such a tabulation in the first place because it would contain no less than a hundred thousand possible combinations, but Good Listener insisted I created three letter codes for at least geographic locations.
In hindsight, it makes perfect sense: in for nothing else, postmasters will need location codes for sending, receiving and redirecting communication.
And finally in this project, Hikaru suggested that we also create a special code to be used by accountants sending and receiving tables of numbers. Good Listener and me were intrigued, and the three of us got it done within a couple of hours: it basically goes “Table of N columns by M rows, with header row saying blah, blah; header column saying blah, blah, first row saying 1 blah, 2 blah... end of table.”

Future Projects: Here I’m mainly counting that, after I’m done with the telegraph, I will work on a typewriter and will outsource the project as soon as I can figure out a hoof-friendly keyboard (clockmaking might be in its infancy, but the discipline exists). Beyond that, I’ll move into steam power, and especially into creating steam locomotives. After that, I’m not sure at the moment: perhaps I’ll undertake hydraulics, and through it I may begin trying to recreate machine logic, which should be a project worth years of work even to just create a basic calculator. The ‘machine logic’ project could also have another very useful offshoot: once I have a typewriter and some sort of machine language, I could upgrade telegraphs into telex printers.
The locomotives’ project comes from a rather shocking fact: despite that ponies don’t possess engines, they do possess railways! I discovered this a couple weeks ago, when I found that there is a train station a couple blocks behind the main produce market. As it turns out, ~Earth~ ponies pull the trains up and down these railroads.
On a side note, I’m astounded at how incredibly civilized these railways are: they snake and curve like crazy and pass through tunnels and bridges, all of it achieving that the pulling ponies never have to pull the train up a slope greater than some 10 degrees, despite the mountain mostly having a slope of no less than some 35 degrees. The mountain’s aesthetics are also incredibly well kept: it isn’t only all happening on the back side of the mountain, so the city’s aesthetics are kept clean, but also that the railways are hidden by lush evergreen woods, so the sun doesn’t go beating down on the pull teams unless it is straight up. And should I also mention that it is a double railway, so it can simultaneously used up and down?
Anyway, I’m digressing. Something else into the list is elevators: ponies can walk up and down stair without fuss, but any cargo being moved around has to either be elevated through telekinesis or through the long spiral ramps hidden on the back of the castle.

Beyond that, I don’t know.

I want to turn on my netbook, but I don't dare. I may have lead-acid cells for me to try to recharge the lithium battery on my device, but I find it much more likely that I will just fry the battery.

Chapter 7: Romance?

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The Masseur 07: Romance?

~Cornbread Chip~’s Personal Journal, Day 139 in ~Equestria~
~Winter 7, Year 2 of the Fourth Era~
Earth’s Date: December 31, 2012.

The Telegraph is ready. We have finally tested the eight machines to complete satisfaction. I told Good Listener and Hikaru that we’ll have showdown next week. We are still missing a few insulators and utility poles, but the glassmakers and carpenters have so far proven reliable and, even if they failed us completely, we have enough for a slightly smaller demonstration.
I’ll set the ball rolling tonight.
On an unrelated note, today happens to be New Year’s Eve, at least by following Earth’s Calendar according to my watch. Neither Hikaru nor Robbie have said a thing, so I’ll quietly have a cup of cider at my room.

~Cornbread Chip~’s Personal Journal, Day 140 in ~Equestria~
~Winter 8, Year 2 of the Fourth Era~
Earth’s Date: January 1st, 2013.

Yesterday night, I went to Night Court and presented Princess ~Luna~ with four copies of Pony Morse V.7.5 (named ~Pulse Speech 7 and 5~ in ~Ponese~) and told her that a week from then I would give her a surprise, but that I would need that at least four people in the Night Court had learned the code by then. I also gave her four telegraph hammers for practice.

~Cornbread Chip~’s Personal Journal, Day 144 in ~Equestria~
~Winter 12, Year 2 of the Fourth Era~
Earth’s Date: January 5, 2013.

Today I decided to test just how accustomed is the palace to my oddities: just before the midday recess of Day Court, I went to the ~Sunrise~ Court, stripped down and began dancing like a madman, following the snowfall from the handful of pegasai that were powdering these gardens. And a few minutes later I just stopped, dressed again and went for some tea. I have been asked about two dozen times what the heck was that about, and I have been sticking to the explanation that I had been too normal lately and needed to relieve some pressure. Almost everybody then laughs, including the few off-duty guards that have asked me.

And, other than asking me about that, Princess ~Luna~ teased me that her court is getting ready for my presentation. I teased her back that I would blow her mind.
She also told me to not call her Princess when we were in private. As a properly trained masseur, I know that clients may have orgasms from something as remote as a shoulder rub or a facial massage, and in their addled state will spout all sorts of pleasure-fuelled proposals; thus, a proper masseur knows not to take seriously anything said during a massage. Thing is, the princess said it dead seriously, well after I had finished.
I’m not sure what to think about this: coming from royalty, this could be constructed as anything from a note of confidence to a declaration of love in the positive, or an order directed at a future concubine in the negative. I can’t imagine her in negative terms, so go figure.

~Cornbread Chip~’s Personal Journal, Day 145 in ~Equestria~
~Winter 13, Year 2 of the Fourth Era~
Earth’s Date: January 6, 2013.

Nothing happened today. Nothing more relevant than me getting permission to put a giant hamster wheel in the back of the palace for my personal use as a treadmill, anyway.
I did notice something about my previous entry into this journal, however. Yesterday I wrote that I could not think about Princess ~Luna~ in negative terms. That pretty much translates that I kind of see her as perfect.
And then, after a little soul searching right now, I have reached a new conclusion: I think I’m falling for her.
So, a ~bald monkey~ alien is falling in love with one of the two sovereigns of this realm. I’m sure this will not end well for me.

~Cornbread Chip~’s Personal Journal, Day 148 in ~Equestria~
~Winter 16, Year 2 of the Fourth Era~
Earth’s Date: January 9, 2013.

(Early morning)
The demonstration went every bit as well as I could have expected. Or perhaps even better, considering that I hadn’t expected ~Luna~ to be one of the typists that learned my Pony Morse, let alone master it almost as good as Good Listener.
Anyway, it went like this:
First, Hikaru, Good Listener and I rolled our telegraph machines into the throne room as soon as Day Court had closed. As agreed, we put two per corner, so we could then wire them into a rectangle around the room. We tested and found, to not surprise, that we couldn’t use the floor of the throne room as ground. We finished our work there by wheeling in three trolleys loaded with these super cheap wooden pyramidal frames that we would be using as utility poles. Then we agreed to meet back there a quarter hour before Night Court, and went to have dinner or whatever. I just went straight to bed, asking my maid escort to wake me up with some black tea and sandwiches a half hour before Court opening time.
Once Court was ready to start, we entered, pulled the two machines that would stretch across the front of the room, placed them back to back in front of the throne, and called the court for attention. We asked the court for the typists we had requested, and were rather surprised when we didn’t only get a lot more than we requested, but the first one in line was Princess Selene herself.
We recovered quickly, and began the second part: testing our 16 typists at either sending or receiving, so to make sure that we would indeed be able to have a show. All were good, even if some were faster than others. But we had the machines disconnected, thus this was much more about listening to a hammer two meters away.
We thus began the first step of the real demonstration: we pulled the machines some two meters apart and wired them on the typical telegraphic triple wire system: a single ground wire, and as I hadn’t been able to figure out how to make a semiconductor, we had to have two separate sender wires. We then selected two average typists from our pool and asked one of them to say something to the other.
If Court hadn’t been in session around us, I imagine that you could have heard a pin drop from the silence that rose from our group: thanks to some tendency for feedback, my design had separate sender and a receiver hammers, and as the receiver hammer didn’t need to be accessible, we had put it inside a resonance box. Furthermore, we had been working with the same batteries for weeks now, and for the demo we prepared fresh batteries. Furthermore, the pony on the sender side was still thinking that the other one was supposed to hear the sound of his own hammer, and hit it harder accordingly. Thus, the first blow sounded as hard as a gunshot.
Hikaru was the first one from us to react, flipping open the cover (the soundboard) of the resonance box. This prompted me to do the same on the sender’s side, and Good Listener to ask the sender to try again, gently.
Thus, let history record the very first round telegram in a public demonstration: “~How are your kids, Bright Candle?~” “~You just had dinner at my home, brother.~”
Oh yeah: telegraphy has now had its very first cheeky comeback.
Once the snorts of laughter died down, I explained to them that the signals moved at a near infinite speed (without a clear unit of time, I cannot define lightspeed in ~Ponese~), and that the lines could be extended as far as needed, so these machines could be very useful at sending time-sensitive messages over vast distances, such as tax records and diplomatic and military communication between towns, cities and the capital. Beyond that, that the ~distance writing artefact~ could also be turned for civilian and business use for short messages that can be received within the same day, as opposed to waiting for normal mail speed.
So we then proceeded to the second part of the demo: we disconnected the machines and pushed one of them to its former corner, leaving another in front of the throne. We then brought much longer wires and the ‘utility poles’ and, with help from the pool of typists, we rapidly wired them into four “cities” plus the one in front of the throne representing the capital. Our represented cities were ~Ponyville~, ~Manehattan~, ~Appleloosa~ and ~El Trote~, which apparently represent a very difficult communications route, including a minimum of eight days of miserable journey through patched savannas and deserts on its second half.
And, over the next hour, we sent a plethora of examples of the kind of time sensitive messages that could benefit from instant communication. And then the princess really got into the game, and sent back a kind of message that non of us had thought about:

To: all Royal Guard road outposts.
From: Royal Guard central command, Canterlot.
Title: Wanted fugitive
Message: This is an immediate order to monitor roads and trains for a red maned, brown stallion, young unicorn adult, with a bag of bits for a cutie mark. He is wanted for questioning in relation with a series of thefts and aggravated assaults in Manehattan. Approach with caution.

Yup, I think she’s completely sold for the telegraph.

~Cornbread Chip~’s Personal Journal, Day 150 in ~Equestria~
~Winter 18, Year 2 of the Fourth Era~
Earth’s Date: January 11, 2013.
Fifth Monthly Recap

The biggest thing that happened this month is that I presented the telegraph to Princess ~Luna~ on Night 147. I made a nice and lengthy entry on Day 148. Beyond what happened that night, I’ve begun discussing with her how to sell the service to the people.
Other than that, the potters are sending me bucketfuls of gold, the maids keep treating me like their collective son, Hikaru nags me to invent stuff, Good Listener hangs out with us at least once a week, and I’m warm despite the snow outside. Life’s good.
Something worth mentioning: I seem to be falling in love with Princess ~Luna~. I have been noticing a few ‘symptoms’ on myself for a while now, but nothing like the dream I had last night. I had what might have been the most realistic dream I have ever had in my life, and also the one that I can remember the most vividly: I remember talking with ~Luna~ about all the little pleasures that were lost to us; mine because of not being in the correct world, and hers because of having jumped a thousand years. I remember the taste of the tequila and mescal I offered her, just as well as I remember the taste of the ~moonshine~ that she offered me back. I remember the smell of the copal incense I was using to give fragrance to my apartment. I remember joking with her. I even remember how she asked me to follow her to her own apartments, and into her own bed, and then trying to make love to her.
“Try” being the operative word: how in the world is that a sexual dream can be less than even enjoyable? I believe my brain is getting a bit too technical about stuff, demonstrating me that there is just far too much difference between an eighty-kilo male monkey and an eight-hundred-kilo female horse. It was the most realistic, most vividly remembered, and also the weirdest dream I can remember having.
I sincerely hope not to have dreams this intense and this vivid too often. Not only would they make me feel awkward about our massage sessions, but I also woke up with a mess inside my underwear and feeling as tired as if I hadn’t slept a blink all night.

Chapter 8: Acute Insomnia

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~Cornbread Chip~’s Personal Journal, Day 173 in ~Equestria~
~Winter 41, Year 2 of the Fourth Era~
Earth’s Date: February 3, 2013.

I just realised that I have barely written any new journal entries this past month, and while I know I won’t really be correcting my current tendency, I do need a little bit of release.
In fact, it was ‘release’ the very reason why I started this journal: so I could go back and compare my journal with my memories and have a slight reassurance that I really am walking among and holding conversations with magic-using, Technicolor ponies, rather than drooling while I stare at the walls of a padded cell.
I don’t know what to think anymore, but I do know what I see happening in me, and I know how I feel about it: My self-control, that edifice that I began to overbuild and reinforce a good decade before I even knew the term ‘sociopathy’, is slipping away like it was sand in my hands. I’m absolutely terrified.
The sign I’m getting is that my lusts, my ~carnal urges~, have gone completely astray. Almost every night I’m having these extremely vivid dreams of having sex with ~Luna~. I then wake up at the crack of dawn and feel as tired as if I hadn’t gone to sleep at all. And my underpants are a mess.
Everybody around me has noticed how I’m going down, except for the princesses: I’ve asked everybody to not remark on my condition with them, and I have more than enough acting experience to be able to ‘act’ normal. ~Key Mistress~ (1) was really displeased about keeping my secret and has warned me that if the princesses ask her, she will sing like a bird. I can’t fault her.
The duty of escorting me around has been handed back to the ~Guard~, and they are assigning nothing but beefy ~Earth~ ponies to follow me around. I’m guessing that they are betting that, at some point, I will collapse, and have me followed by someone beefy enough to pick me up.
I have also cancelled my massage services beyond basic shoulder rubs, citing that it is too hard for me to massage them properly through their winter fur. Truth be told, it’s too hard for me to force my muscles to do a proper massage, even on my own furless legs.
And the doctors have no idea of what’s happening to me.
I’m fucked.

~Cornbread Chip~’s Personal Journal, Day 174 in ~Equestria~
~Winter 42, Year 2 of the Fourth Era~
Earth’s Date: February 4, 2013.
If I’m not going to do a status report for this month, then I might as well write this now:
So far, my only ‘invention’ this month has been a pedal-powered washing machine:

Version One I had made from bronze by some blacksmiths, and it was a good proof-of-concept but a lousy tool: on one hand, it did its work as a hollow metal drum half submerged in a bath of near-boiling water. On the other hand, it was heavy and had a dangerous tendency to splash. I sent it back, and nobody misses it.

Version Two was much more reasonable: having been made from a large ~cider~ barrel, it was significantly bigger while also being significantly lighter. Too bad it has significant trouble handling larger pieces, such as bedsheets. I wanted to take it apart and try again, but I never expected that, after only a week inside the laundry, the ladies would grow fond enough of it that they would all go ballistic from me merely insinuating that I wanted to take it apart. In fact, I’m pretty sure that ~Tea Cossy~ wanted to bite me! To date, the ladies use it to wash table napkins and facial towels, which the castle apparently dirties by the bucketful.

Version Three was actually meant to handle bed sheets and pony-sized towels and capes. On it, I did away with the barrel and made it into something more akin to a paddlewheel with rounded pegs instead of paddles, beating on one side of a donut-shaped bath. The ladies love it, but I’m ashamed of being its inventor: while I had intended it to be operated by four ladies pushing the pedals, it jams continuously unless there’s a fifth one pushing the cloth around the donut.

Version Four was commissioned two days ago and is supposed to be delivered tomorrow and be assembled and ready to work two days later, and is a bunch of minor improvements over Version Three: the basin is mounted on a ring of casters so it can rotate under the wheel, so there should be no more jams from undisplaced cloth. Then the wheel itself is smaller, has less peg density and the pegs are now conical rather than cylindrical, so it can move much faster and with fewer complications.

There was this big Winter Ball like a week ago, dedicated to the Moon and to Princess ~Luna~. (2) I’m glad that shortly after the Spaniards’ goodbye, I decided to try and get myself a proper gala suit. An Aztec nobleman’s suit, passed through Imperial Rome and Feudal Japan: a parrot-green headdress commissioned from this gryphon wig-maker, mounted on a monolithic-looking silver centurion’s helmet and a little facepaint; a scarlet cape supported by jade-on-silver pauldrons; a Japanese-inspired silver scalemail shirt (that I got for free by selling the design on a for-royalties contract to the metalworkers’ guild); a pure-white loincloth that, with tails almost long enough to touch my feet, would have had me arrested under Aztec law by wearing it ‘Emperor’s length’; silver bracers and hoof-like gauntlets hiding my woollen gloves, and silver gaiters and foot covers hiding from sight the socks inside my Geta sandals.
BTW, I just don’t get why ponies make a point of not looking at my socks, or at my hands if I’m wearing gloves. (3) To each culture their own fixations, I guess, but I don’t have the benefit of having hooves to isolate my feet from the snow!
As I already said, my costume was ready long before I received the invitation two weeks ahead of the party, but we had to rush order a formal kimono for Hikaru, who apparently barely has any clothing other than the various yukatas I usually see him wearing. ~Fancy Stitches~ (4) accepted gladly the challenge, under the condition that he could only dedicate us a single day for the fitting.
I didn’t know that Robbie had received a set of formal armour. I have to talk with the castle’s blacksmiths, so we can make him a centurion’s armour rather than the ridiculous gilded riot-gear and bucket helm that he must have designed himself. I must first learn where the heck did he get those BOOTS, though: I’m sick of wearing sandals in winter!
I must mention it too: Robbie was already white and blonde, but the armour’s enchantment makes it literal. I would have paid a ton of money to see his reaction to becoming a snow-white, straw yellow blonde.
Hikaru and I tried, but couldn’t pull Good Listener to the party: with us having an extra ticket apiece, with Good Listener having two fiancées, and with none of us being capable of securing a third ticket, Hikaru and I eventually resold our extra tickets and used that money to buy gifts for ~Inky~ and ~Mouthy~.
And about the party itself: I didn’t see a lot of it, as ~Luna~ kept me by her side the whole night, and she had to stay by the door greeting guests. Thankfully, she took a few pauses and danced a few pieces with me, which kept me from freezing, but couldn’t keep me from catching a cold by the end of the night.

9: Chronic Insomnia

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The Masseur 09: Chronic Insomnia

Day 183

The maids browbeat me into getting out of the castle and have a walk through the city.
Out there, I bought a lyre on a whim.
I don’t know what was I thinking, especially considering that everybody knows who I am and now I’ll go and get stalked by the musicians’ guild or something.

And all of it because I wanted to listen again to the Fairy Fountain melody from Zelda: Ocarina of Time. I'm a ~feather brain~, especially considering that, now that I think about it, I think the base melody fits more the sound of a dulcimer, and the solos are either violin or flute (I can't remember which one).

Day 188

While both human and pony languages say things like “keep the cold out”, I have finally caught on the fact that ponies think that cold is a thing, rather than being what it is: the absence of heat. I think I was first hearing it from some maids, and then I went to Day Court and to Princess Solaria’s Academy for Gifted Magic Users, and various scholars explained to me how ~warm humours~ and ~chill humours~, both being intangible fluids, flow in and out of stuff making it hotter or colder. The people at the Academy also explained to me how, while heat-creating spells were easy enough, nobody understand why cold-creating spells always fail.
Thus, ponies don’t understand the very basics of thermodynamics, let alone the kinetic nature of heat.
I’m just glad to have found a new problem, and one that can be worked on by having assistants and having them do the work. Meanwhile, I should be able to just sit and supervise them, or have them report to me if I become bedridden.
And the doctors continue to be baffled by my progressive collapse.
I think I may need to check how to legalize a Last Will and Testament around here. I think I will leave my moneys and possessions evenly split between Good Listener and Hikaru, then my royalties to some orphanage or scholarship fund, to be administered by ~Luna~.
On other news, I’ll do the next pair of royal appointments, then cancel massage service altogether.

Day 191

I had a severe dizzy spell while massaging ~Luna~’s face. Thankfully, I stepped sideway before I lost my footing. Thus, her horn only went through my right shoulder rather than my chest. Good thing I’m left handed.

I'm surprised that her horn went through me like greased lightning: I had a similar accident with one of Good Listener's fiancées, and her horn barely pierced my skin.

Even as I lay here, I can hear a half-dozen maids saying everything they know to the princesses. I'll tell the doctors to spill the beans as well.

In retrospective, I’m awed at how easily ~Luna~’s horn slipped into my flesh, with the spiral fluting actually expanding the hole rather than creating friction and stopping the stroke. It was also surprisingly painless.

I wonder if, when the time comes, I’ll ask her to gore me in my sleep.

Day 193

So, I have been told that Princess ~Luna~ has been sending me ‘pleasant’ dreams for about a month a half. I have then received confirmation from several sources that her powers include ‘herding the sleeping minds of her subjects away from nightmares’; nevertheless, because she has ‘untold numbers’ of subjects (which I think may number in significant fractions of a million), she is usually just hovering over the general mindscape, only giving nudges toward the positive to regular bad dreams and only really entering the nightmares that really seemed to stand out for the bad.

Day 194, early morning

~Luna~ came by just before I would have fallen asleep last night.
She told me that it was her fault: that she had been seeing from the general mindscape that my dreams were always unpleasant, but that it took her months to figure out how to enter the dreams of a ~bald monkey~, and there she found something that she hadn’t found in the dreams of any of her subjects: a desire for her that rather than being rooted on mere lust for her body or her powers or her position, concentrated on liking her smile, her laughter and her conversation.
She told me that she was flattered. That she stepped into my dreams and had several nights worth of conversation before she checked if she could invoke ~carnal urges~ in me.
It all apparently started about the time I gave her ~Pulse Speech 7 and 5~: about two or three nights later, she finally had the breakthrough of being able to enter my dreams. After she corrected a few nightmares, she saw how my dreams would morph into me bringing ‘machines of wonder’ into Equestria, or into me living in a normal house while my moneys where pumped into orphanages.

I’m currently feeling very conflicted: she basically told me that she has been raping me (as in having sex with me without my real consent), yet I just can’t feel angry at the girl who thought she was doing it to my complete benefit.

Damn me for being male! Why can’t I be properly incensed!?

I think I’ll need some time... and perhaps some distance as well.

10: At rest, at last

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The Masseur 10: At Rest, At Last

~Cornbread Chip~’s Personal Journal, Day 243 in ~Equestria~
~Spring 19, Year 3 of the Fourth Era~
Earth’s Date: April 14, 2013.

Monthly Recap Number 8:

(I recently took notice that I have been doing my journal on 30-day months, while the local calendar has a year of 366 days, with winter and summer having 92 days, and spring and autumn having 91 days. And just as in many Earth cultures, the year begins on the first day of spring (even if there isn’t really a New Year’s Eve celebration, rather being a massive undertaking called ~Winter Wrap Up~ when everybody scrapes up the winter snow before the pegasai open up the winter overcast). Thus I waited 3 extra days before doing the recap.)

I have been procrastinating on resuming my journal, but today is time for the monthly update. I will also be updating at least once every three days, even if most of those updates may be nothing but “the crew installed five hundred more meters of lines today, with the usual pattern of one utility pole every forty meters, plus three construction-grade, windproof clouds in between. I still don’t like too much the idea of using clouds in construction; just the same way as the crew doesn’t seem to like me laying rabbit traps each night, then being able to spit-roast a rabbit every other day.
Well: tomorrow’s will read “We stopped for the weekend. It took me an hour to get to town.”, but whatever.

On relevant news: My general state of health has improved by leaps and bounds since Selene stopped snooping into my dreamscape. I can also say that I have forgiven her, even if I have yet to tell her.
I think that I’ll visit the Palace next weekend and say so.
By the way, it has to suck to be the princesses: during my stay on the castle I hadn’t noticed the existence of weekends, but the castle has to keep working through weekends, precisely due to supplicants who may be unable to come but on weekends. I need to talk to the princesses about how to use ministries to handle the minutiae of governance.

Note to self: make an appointment, three weekends from now, for a private supper with both princesses. That should be enough time to write something on parliamentary monarchy.

[Many page turns]

[Reads a lot]


[Face palm]

Note to self: hire a secretary or three, so I can resume writing those books I left unfinished. It isn’t like I was all that useful around here anyway.

Haven’t reported it previously, despite it having been my job since I was fit to walk again: I am currently living on the road, working on supervising the installation of the telegraph line between the capital city of ~Canterlot~ and the nearby town of ~Ponyville~. Initially, I was fronting the costs and expecting the project to last some eight months, as it would have to progress on a small crew paid between my saving and my royalties; however, the Crowns picked up the expenses and we are thus moving along at an average pace of five hundred meters a day, and we are a quarter of the way there after only twenty days.
Yeah: 20 days. It was a mistake for me to set the start date without checking if that date was relevant to the local calendar, thus not knowing that I had set the date on the local equivalent of New Year’s Eve. I was pulling off my hair that day, not having but my foremen and half of the crew, until somebody told me and I let the rest have the day off. Thankfully, the crew compensated me, with the foremen ordering a single-day weekend the following week in punishment for the workers not having read their contracts.
I like the locals’ ethics.
Only other snag we have had so far is that, last week, half of the crew was rotated out. It was annoying to have to work half-steam for a day, but they caught up by the next day.

We recently received an announcement that we’ll have the rest of my original crew rotated out next week. That’s annoying, but we’ll make due.

About inventions:
Just before leaving the castle, I made a second prototype clothes dryer. First one works like a marvel, but is too small for large-scale use. The second one is more like an externally-heated, industrial drum-furnace. It works marvellously (even if clothes need to be fed five times before being dry), even if it requires six girls to operate: four to power the drum, one to feed it and another to catch the clothes from the feed-out.

The last couple of weeks I had two ideas related to telegraphy, one for a telegraphic typewriter; another for an automated telegraphic fax machine.
The telegraphic typewriter would write in Morse: dots, lines and spaces. I consider it a middle step before achieving a true typewriter, and should be faster than writing by mouth (for non-unicorns). Not certain what would be its practical applications outside of telegraphy, if we can even give it a real use in telegraphy. I haven’t even spoken about it to anybody but Good Listener and Hikaru, and won’t take it seriously unless I can find it a real application.
The telegraphic fax would be a beauty in its simplicity: take a drum of graph paper rotating under a needle, just like thermographs, seismographs and... whatever other automatic meteorological instruments there are on Earth; put the needle to be writing the output from a telegraph. I immediately launched a design challenge at whatever professional association coordinated clockmakers, and have received two replies so far: one from a member of the ~Canterlot’s~ guild of jewellers, and another from a guy named ~Time Keeper~, a pocket watch-maker from ~Ponyville~. I think I’ll wait two more weeks for late entrants before commissioning a prototype from the last guy: the sketches he sent me seem to promise that the drum will move at a constant speed, rather than the possible ticking motion from the other design. Besides, I liked it in its general simplicity: power comes from a ‘falling weight’ pulley system which has an up gear going into a flywheel and a down gear turning the paper drum, which then has another down-gear which feeds a worm-gear which turns the drums simple spin into a screw motion. The machine’s speed is regulated in two ways: a friction brake on the flywheel (somewhat controlling the speed, but mostly preventing runaways), and the weight of the ‘falling weight’ (setting the speed). I suggested to ~Time Keeper~ to also include various gear ratios, but he had already though about it and discarded the idea: he convincingly argued that his current design was meant for the 100 kilo weight to finish its 2 meter fall at the same time as the drum finished its 100th turn under the needle; thus, fiddling with the gearing would only result in the drum and the weight loosing synch, which could potentially ram the spent drum into the machine (after all, the worm gear is so down-geared that it has monstrous torque).
I then told him to reverse the direction of the worm gear (so the drum will fall out rather than be rammed in), but otherwise conceded into the genius of his derp-proof design.
So, I don’t think I have anything else to report at the moment. If I remember anything else, I’ll put it in tomorrow’s entry.
If I write an entry tomorrow.

Can’t I combine the machines? Just modify the typewriter to become a puncher rather than an ink-layer, then change the paper sheet to paper tape, then feed this tape through a vacuum-actuated telegraph (like a pianola), then put a speed-up fax drum on the other end?

The Masseur 11: Slow and Steady

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The Masseur 11: Slow and Steady

~Cornbread Chip~’s Personal Journal, Day 244 in ~Equestria~
~Spring 20, Year 3 of the Fourth Era~
Earth’s Date: April 15, 2013.

We stopped for the weekend. I forgot to mention it yesterday, but I had arranged myself a flying chariot to pick me up early and deliver me to ~Ponyville~, where I spent the day prospecting for a place to build a lab-cum-house. I eventually found a pretty nice spot: pretty far away from the town (so noises from my coming steam-power experiments and smells from my not-always-vegetarian fare will not bother any neighbours), pressed between an apple orchard and a maple forest. It even has a nice little stream, which I’m planning to channel for hydropower and to pond for farming fishes or so.
Besides, the city hall was giving me a crazy bargain: this lot measures roughly an acre, and they are selling it to me for 1000 gold pieces, with then a secondary quote of 400 pieces for a five-by-six (canes) log cabin and 500 for a seven-by-ten warehouse. Considering that the average price for a home in-town is 3500 pieces, and that I wouldn’t have a decent-sized lab or that neighbours would complain about my cooking, I think I have a deal.
I’ll think about it for a few days, but I’m already certain that I’ll be buying.

April 15, 2013
I need to write this down, so I can later remember it straight:
I am forgiving Selene because she was unknowingly committing statutory rape on me, whereas statutory rape is defined as “Apparently consensual sex with someone who is in no condition to give consent”.
Examples coming to mind:
(1) A teenager couple that is technically committing statutory rape on each other.
(2) Somebody with a mental disability, whom may or may not be legally considered a minor regardless of age in some jurisdictions.
(3) A magical princess who thought that her lover was “playing it cool” with public, while he was actually thinking that he was going bananas.

~Cornbread Chip~’s Personal Journal, Day 246 in ~Equestria~
~Spring 22, Year 3 of the Fourth Era~
Earth’s Date: April 17, 2013.

Back from the weekend.
Yesterday I had dinner at Good Listener’s home. Inky and Chatty tried to be graceful wives with their boyfriend’s friends and experimented with their oven, making something that looked like a roast beef, smelled of mushrooms, apples and bananas, and tasted like fruit-rolled sawdust.
Good Listener played ‘Dutiful Husband’ and almost convinced me that he liked the taste. He even had a second helping.
I played ‘Grateful Guest’ and cleaned my plate. I did refuse seconds, though.
Chatty and Inky tried to eat their own monster, but failed.
And Hikaru was a coward and ran for the hills as soon as we entered their apartment and smelled the roast.
Today I’m totally constipated, but I made the girls feel good. If I have my say in it, Good Listener will never hear a complaint about his ‘obnoxious alien friend’ referring to me.

On today’s news: the crew installed five hundred more meters of lines today, with the usual pattern of one utility pole every forty meters, plus three construction-grade, windproof clouds in between.
Tomorrow we’ll cross a small ravine, but we expect no real delays: for us we have a bridge, and for the lines we will simply use a few more clouds than usual.
Something that I do find annoying is that, the day after tomorrow, the other half of my original personnel will be rotated into other projects. The good news, however, is that we expect a half-day overlap (breakfast to lunch), so the old guys will be able to train the rookies.

And my four Royal Guards have yet to be rotated, mainly because they are rotating with each others, so I only have one guard at a given time. I have even got them to relax enough to take off their armours while off duty, rather than only for bathing and sleeping.
I haven’t written anything about them, have I? Well, these four are the first ones that have been assigned to me for an extended amount of time (maids would rotate twice a day, and guards would rotate once every three days), thus the first four that I have had long enough to care to get to know. Three come from the Day Guard and another from the much-less-numerous Night Guard. Guess who guards between midnight and dawn and rings the bells to wake up the camp each morning? Anyway, I’ll describe them:
Dawn-till-lunch: a male pegasus named ~Igneous Spear~. I find it kind of ironic that, once the armour’s cosmetic enchantment comes off, he looks almost exactly like how the Night Guard is supposed to look: dark grey coat, dark purple mane and tail and yellow eyes. On duty he’s a perfect Guard (to the point where you can barely watch him blink), and off-duty he keeps to himself, never smiles and seems to dedicate his free time to practice, meditate and sleep. If he would volunteer on his off time, just like the other guards and me, I believe I would have a great deal of respect for him, rather than just consider him a frosty jerk.
Lunch-till-dinner: a female Earthy named ~Pink Monolith~, who definitely honours her name: pink coat, moss-green mane and tail (clashing horribly with her coat), and genes that made her grow up into looking more solid than your average mountain. She’s also the youngest guard I have had posted to my service. And while she’s perfectly dour on duty, off duty she’s kind to others, yet melancholic when she things nobody’s looking. ~Supernova~ has told me that the girl ran away from her home, enlisted on the very same day that she turned sixteen, and counts the days until she turns eighteen and can change her name to “Rose Blossom” without parental approval. I believe it remains unsaid that the girl has plenty of issues.
Dinner-till-midnight: A unicorn named ~Backdrop Painter~. A pleasant enough fellow, but, quite frankly, one of those guys who just tend to fade into the background.
Midnight-till-dawn: a bat pegasus by the name ~Supernova~. She’s the complete counterpart of ~Igneous Spear~, from her natural appearance being that of being a Day Guard (except for being a bat pegasus), to being personable and generally fun to be around, and willing to go beyond duty and help around the camp. In all honesty, I’ve taken to napping around the day so I can accompany her for a while during her otherwise boring shift.

~Cornbread Chip~’s Personal Journal, Day 249 in ~Equestria~
~Spring 25, Year 3 of the Fourth Era~
Earth’s Date: April 20, 2013.

New personnel: I said goodbye to the last of my original crew yesterday. The rookies are finally working without hesitation, though, and we worked up to standard speed today.

~Cornbread Chip~’s Personal Journal, Day 251 in ~Equestria~
~Spring 27, Year 3 of the Fourth Era~
Earth’s Date: April 22, 2013.

Weekend break. Didn’t return to the camp at night, rather having arranged with Good Listener and co to bunk in their sofa, so I could go to the castle during Night Court and request a short private audience with Selene.
Tonight, I’ll be telling her that I forgive her.

~Cornbread Chip~’s Personal Journal, Day 252 in ~Equestria~
~Spring 28, Year 3 of the Fourth Era~
Earth’s Date: April 23, 2013.

I’m banging my head on my desk as I write this down.
My distance calculations are completely wrong: checking a newer, better labelled map, I’ve seen that the point I supposedly had as the town happens to be nothing but a campground on the midpoint between ~Canterlot~ and ~Ponyville~. Thus, my calculations are short by 100%!
Serves me right for always curling into a ball whenever I have to take a flying chariot. I had never seen the terrain or sensed the distance until I began noticing some discrepancies, and finally decided to check just what the heck did the distance of one ~journey~ translated into metric: roughly 80 clicks on easy terrain.
Fuck. Me.
I was going over the fact that, for humans, the equivalent measurement is some 40 kilometres: the distance that a Roman Legionary could sustainably march every day while carrying his whole equipment.
Of course, ponies aren’t human.

And yeah, the crew got work done today: there were some delays during the week, so the crew decided to assemble during ‘Sunday’ afternoon and do a half-day.
I certainly love the locals’ work ethics.

~Cornbread Chip~’s Personal Journal, Day 255 in ~Equestria~
~Spring 31, Year 3 of the Fourth Era~
Earth’s Date: April 26, 2013.

Hikaru asked me if I was okay with him and the linguist trio to come spend a short holiday with me. I said ‘sure’. They’ll be here tomorrow.
As it turns out, ~Luna~ declared Night Court closed for the next ten days, so Hikaru suddenly has time for visiting me. Good Listener, Lippy and Inky apparently have loads of overdue vacation time from their work in the Royal University and taking ten days is cheap for them, even on short notice.

~Cornbread Chip~’s Personal Journal, Day 256 in ~Equestria~
~Spring 32, Year 3 of the Fourth Era~
Earth’s Date: April 27, 2013.

The camp went into mutiny against me.
News came that I would be having some visitors this afternoon, so everybody decided to remind me that, while I love to work the same eight hours as the rest of the crew, and while I voluntarily take tasks that ponies dislike (like sharpening tools or setting the ceramic insulators), my only real duty is to rubberstamp my foreman’s decisions. So they gave me picnic basket and a black cloud with a leash and told me to get lost.
And well, my visitors arrived. Nothing out of the ordinary, although I found it quite funny that, out of two guys and two gals, it is the gals the ones who are taking camping like fishes to water.
I mean: like an hour ago, I heard Good Listener’s yell his dismay at there not being a proper bed. He was then pushed inside their tent by the girls and... well... he’s currently making me very, very jealous.

~Cornbread Chip~’s Personal Journal, Day 257 in ~Equestria~
~Spring 33, Year 3 of the Fourth Era~
Earth’s Date: April 28, 2013.

I caught the girls using friction to start a fire.
Using it successfully.
Once they had a bonfire going and a couple of breadfruits roasting, the girls begun telling us just how the heck they are so good at camping. Their birthday unfortunately falls right on New Year’s Eve (Spring 92), so their birthday parties would often have almost none of their friends coming. So, starting when they were six years old, their father, ~Big Reader~, begun taking them camping on their birthday. They then began going on anecdotes about how their idea of a perfect birthday tends to be about blowing two candles off from a cake that looks like somebody sat on it, then cuddling with their daddy by a campfire until they would fall asleep. We eventually ate the breadfruits, and they told more anecdotes about their dad, and they joked about him being guilty for their poor cooking, as he raised them on pancakes, veggie soups and cold salads.
The ~Big Reader~ I know might be anal retentive enough to have no need for toilets, but he certainly sounds like a great dad: one that would try, unlike mine.
Whatever; I’m digressing. It’s curious how much time I had spent around the girls, yet I had never really gotten to know them. I will make darn sure to correct that.
I didn’t even know they were sisters, let alone twins. I had always found them to be very similar in personality, but I thought them to be best friends rubbing off on each other. And it didn’t help that, while they are what passes for identical twins among ponies (as in, they have identical colours, but swapped), their level of contrast makes them look starkly different: Inky is sandy hair on auburn pelt, and puts her hair on a bun, while Chatty is auburn on sandy pelt and keeps her hair loose.
Whatever: I’m simply an awful friend. Even if I couldn’t notice, I should have asked. I should have been trying to be friend to the girls, and not only to their boy.

On different issues, today arrived a squad from the Night Guard: an officer and four troopers. The officer identified herself as ~Serene Moonlight~ and will stay with the camp for a week, giving a week off to my assigned guards.

~Cornbread Chip~’s Personal Journal, Day 258 in ~Equestria~
~Spring 34, Year 3 of the Fourth Era~
Earth’s Date: April 29, 2013.

Two of my traps from last night caught rabbits.
Hikaru nearly cried when I showed him the skinned animals, and he could barely wait long enough for them to roast before devouring his. Turns out that, other than the occasional eggs, he hadn’t had meat since we left Earth. He’s currently moaning in pain on his cot, but he insists that it is ‘good pain’.
Now I feel awful for those few times when the maids at the castle would burn me an old hen, and I never checked if Hikaru and Robbie had theirs. I think that I will start sending them ‘care packages’ of preserved meat.
I only ate half of my own rabbit. I cut it into quarters and offered to share with the trio. Good Listener politely refused but a bite (so I then ate his part), and Inky and Chatty had a quarter each. Their stomachs are somewhat upset at the moment, but they insist they are no worse than after eating camp fare cooked by their dad.
And, on the way back, the guard that was looking over us eventually stepped on the discarded entrails and got violently sick.

~Cornbread Chip~’s Personal Journal, Day 259 in ~Equestria~
~Spring 35, Year 3 of the Fourth Era~
Earth’s Date: April 30, 2013.

Hikaru is just so indigested! And he will not allow anybody to tell him otherwise.
The girls are somewhat sick as well, but they assure me that the food tasted great, and Good Listener assures me that they routinely get worse from their own cooking attempts.
Good Listener was the one who made lunch and dinner today. Incidentally, I learned how not to roast eggplants.

~Cornbread Chip~’s Personal Journal, Day 261 in ~Equestria~
~Spring 37, Year 3 of the Fourth Era~
Earth’s Date: May 2, 2013.

Hikaru is back on his feet. So much that he found a nice little creek and surprised me with a bunch of fishes, which he then spit-roasted precisely the way I’ve seen so many times in anime.
Everyone loved the roast fishes, except for the guard that was overlooking us. Thankfully, Hikaru had tossed the fish entrails into the fire, so the guard didn’t have a chance of stepping onto more.
Not that we told him.

And Inky and Chatty are currently trying to be discreet as they ride Good Listener, but I can still hear some squeaking from an overloaded camp bed, and some giggling. Oh, and the wind is blowing my way.
Some time ago he told me, after much prodding and plenty of drinks, how they solve the three-bodies problem: they started by one of the girls saying that she wasn’t in the mood so Goody would concentrate on the other, but Goody tells me that doing so made him feel like he was cheating. They eventually solved the thing in two ways: it is either very gentle cuddle-sex (usually them necking with him until they push him down and one of them climbs on), or if they want it hard, the girls will put a strap-on on him and position themselves so their flowers are pressed together, then he makes sure that both real-him and fake-him are inside and rides on.
And while I envy him right this second, I can also say that I have come to know him well enough to pity him. He knows he can’t quite satisfy his two girls and he knows that he isn’t bringing a lot to the table (while his salary is the same as each of theirs, they are well-of nobility while he could only afford his studies through a scholarship),
Can’t find the words.
Can’t concentrate!
Damn! I’m too horny to concentrate on writing, and having Hikaru in my tent doesn’t let me do something about the tent in my pants.

Oh, yeah: the best way to put Goody’s situation is that he’s afraid of the girls one day waking up and realising that out there are stallions much better than him: bolder, better looking, members of the peerage, richer, better lovers.
Even so, I know the girls enough to declare them to be too happy with him just for being who he is.
NOTE TO SELF: ask the girls if he has proposed yet. If not, arrange to railroad him into doing so. It’s weird to think that, despite living together, I think that Good Listener is still far too insecure to actually be their fiancée, let alone husband.

NOTE TO SELF: Once you have gotten to know the girls well enough, ask them how they feel about sharing a boyfriend. While you expect the ‘standard twins answer’, they may surprise you.

May 3, 2013; very early morning

I can’t sleep.
Right this moment, I’m feeling like running all the way to the castle, checking if Selene’s available and then fucking her until she can pronounce my human name right. No more ‘Neigh-shoh’!
Not gonna happen, but the temptation is there.

What is going to happen is that I will ask the guard to not wake us up in the morning, and tomorrow today evening I will get ready the Sigma and the other telephoto for serving as telescopes.
Wish I could safely charge the batteries.

~Cornbread Chip~’s Personal Journal, Day 262 in ~Equestria~
~Spring 38, Year 3 of the Fourth Era~
Earth’s Date: May 3, 2013.

We got childish today and played on a clearing.
Chasing each others is quite refreshing when some of your playmates are small horses: they can run much, much faster than you can, but you can somewhat level the field by making use of trees and doing stuff like grabbing a branch and turn on a dime, or using your arms to bounce off trees. And well, there’s also the little detail that they are about at least twice as heavy as we are, so they have to put on ‘kids gloves’ lest they break us.

Officer ~Moonlight~ took a shift escorting us today. This deserves to be mentioned due to none of us having meat to cook today, yet she producing a couple of rabbits and then surprising us by expertly dressing them for spit roasting and picking some wild herbs for seasoning. She eventually had some, and further surprised us when she begun talking shop about small game and ways to cook it. About it, she commented that, while it had been years and years since the last time she had any meat, it evokes memories about spending time with her next-door neighbours, a family of gryphons.
I am not certain if she did okay by the Guard rulebook when she accepted sitting down with us and chatted away like four hours. I’m telling nobody, though.
After supper, we took my cameras and used them for stargazing. The girls seemed to have studied the constellations in the past, but have also forgotten them. Thankfully, Officer ~Moonlight~ seemed to know them perfectly and saved us.

The girls are currently giggling inside their tent. Every now and then I can also hear a sigh that I’m sure is Goody’s. Cuddle-sex, I guess, although he might be going down on them: he says he doesn’t much like giving them oral because that’s among the sexual forms where he has to ignore the other, with the corollary of him doing it if the girls explicitly ask him to. He described it as something akin to daisy-chaining, where one girl eats him while he eats the other one.

I can’t sleep.
I’m currently just wondering how does a human dick compare to a pony’s. On Earth, horses and donkeys have dicks a third as long as their bodies, so a normal mare may take my arm up to the elbow, and Selene may take it in almost to my shoulder. Therefore, despite being largish for a human, I would be microscopic for a pony, especially taking into account that the second largest pony I have ever seen is wooing me. On the other hand, I could be really lucky and these magical ponies to be like gorillas and kangaroos: dicks so small that look like cigarettes in relationship with their body sizes. If so, then my size would be around pony average, thus just smallish for Selene’s size.
If I remember correctly from the Kama Sutra (damned batteries!), sexual joinings are preferable when the partners are of equivalent size, and become less pleasing the further apart the sizes are: ‘there is nothing good about joinings between elephants and (small animals): an elephant man will give nothing but pain to a (small animal) woman, and may risk her life if he seeds her with an elephant baby; a (small animal) man will waste his efforts to bring an elephant woman to his bed if she cannot feel his coition, and will thus seek another man who she can feel’.
One way or another, I really need to know how I compare.
NOTE TO SELF: Check out a descriptive anatomy book from the Royal Library. Just tell them that you are trying to design an improved harness or something.

~Cornbread Chip~’s Personal Journal, Day 265 in ~Equestria~
~Spring 41, Year 3 of the Fourth Era~
Earth’s Date: May 6, 2013.

My visitors left yesterday.
I went to ~Ponyville~ today and bought the terrain, and also commissioned a builder to have a roof waiting for me when I arrive.
When I finally arrive.
This project will take fucking forever!