The Adventures of the Chaos Colt (CHPT 9)

Oct 15th, 2017
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  1. The Adventures of the Chaos Colt!
  3. Chapter 9 - Terms and Reconsiderations
  5. >Now to hop into the portal and see where it takes you! Hopefully Eris knows what she’s doing.
  6. “Weeeeeeeeee-! Omph!”
  7. >You fall face flat on something… Wet but powdery. Lifting up your face, blue sand starts to trickle like water down your face. Powdery water! Ooooooh! Wonder if you can drink it- Naaaaah, you’re not thirsty right now.
  8. >Getting up, you shake off the rest of the blue sand, getting rid of that wet feeling on your fur. Whoooooooa! Every time you adventured in the Void with Dad, there was always some new place to be seen! And this is just another one to add to the list.
  9. >There’s just a vast sea of blue sand, and a dense forest of cacti scattered for miles. The cacti when up reaaaaaal high into the green sky, almost reaching the purple tornado clouds floating above. And instead of thorns, there were branches of different kinds of leaves.
  10. >Wipplerum leaves, Skimproot needles, Hollydew berries, just a mismatch of things! Not to mention the weird squids that swam in the air not too far above you. They were just slowly drifting about, minding their own business. You wave up to them and give your best smile.
  11. “Hi little squids! Are you friendly?!”
  12. >None of them pay attention to your hello, swimming along in their usual way.
  13. “You can talk to me anytime you want, okay!”
  14. >Still no response. Oh well! Maybe they’re all shy or just really busy.
  15. “Okay! Don’t be afraid to ask!”
  17. >Wow, everything is so lively here, despite it being the Void. Along with the squids, little insects shaped like cubes floated around. A faint glow came from them, giving the forest some light despite all the cacti trees casting large shadows.
  18. >The sand is surprisingly easy to stand on, considering it felt like you’re walking on water. Along the blue sand are the roots of the cacti trees. Underneath the roots, you can see the glowing eyes of little creatures staring at you.
  19. >They must be scared, better just leave them alone for now. If one decides to come out and play, you’ll be happy to make a new friend! Unless it wants to eat you. Then maybe you could just be pen pals or something.
  20. >Even with all the animals visibly around the place, it’s eerily quiet. The only thing you can hear is the wind moving the branches of the trees, and the faint sounds of the squids swimming in the air.
  21. >Oh! You almost forgot about Eris! That’s enough sight seeing for now. Hmmm, where did she go? She’s always off doing something, that’s for sure. Oh! There she is! She’s sitting on one of the branches, a Skimproot needle one, with a pair of binoculars out. She’s looking through them the wrong way, but you suppose that doesn’t matter.
  22. >”Yeesh, looks like I may have taken a wrong turn… Or a right turn. Bah, doesn’t matter! We can make it through. Just have to find that key…”
  23. >You trot over to her just as she throws away to binoculars, which sprouts feet and scampers away. Eris snaps her talon, making a diving board appear. She jumps onto it, and dives into the ground, burrowing into the sand. A lump in the sand tells you where she is, as she starts to zigzag and move around in all sorts of weird shapes and directions.
  25. “Eris? What are you doing?”
  26. >Her talon claw pops out of the sand with a sock puppet that resembled her looks. Some twigs and a weird seashell for her horns, some gems for the eyes, and some mop pieces for the hair.
  27. >“Well! By the looks of it, we’re kinda lost right now. I don’t know what dimension this is in the Void, buuuuuuuut….” The sock looks around the blue sandy forest. “I don’t like it one bit. Don’t you agree, Eris?”
  28. >Eris’ head pops out from the sand. “Yeah, I don’t like the feeling of this place. Then again, I just really really really don’t like the Void in general. Hey Anon. If you ever meet the Void. Just don’t.” You raise an eyebrow.
  29. “Um, don’t what?”
  30. >”Just don’t.”
  31. “.......Okaaaay? Well, where are we?”
  32. >The draconequus erupts from the ground, making a perfect landing. “Ah! That was refreshing… Oh! Um.” She turns her body in your direction while looking around a bit more. She pops off one of her arms and uses it to scratch the back of her head. “Like I said, have no idea. But most ponies who traverse the Void have no idea either, or make it out to know.”
  33. “B-But, how are we going to save Dad if we don’t know where to go?”
  34. >”The same way that old coot goes from here to Equestria. That or you can just rip a vortex in the fabric of the chaos reality, but that can cause some time rifts and whatnot…” Eris rolls her paw wrist as she explains. “Yada yada yada. Guess the only option we have is to hop from dimension to dimension in the Void until we find the Getty.”
  35. “The Getty?”
  36. >Eris scoops you up and presses her forehead against yours with a confused glare. “C’mon, you can’t tell me that you don’t know about the Getty! If you lived with Discord, than you must have seen it a BAJILLION times!”
  38. > You tap your chin with your hoof and hum.
  39. “Hmmm… Wait, do you mean the ‘Gateway to Equestria’?”
  40. >Your friend mounts you on her shoulders, letting you piggy back and use her horns as a way to grab on. She starts to walk through the forest and keeps talking.
  41. >”Yeah! That’s the Getty! Slang term for us Void dwellers. Though I wish I wasn’t a part of that group… Ahem. Anyways, since you’ve always wanted to see Equestria, you can’t be telling me you’ve never tried to go through, have you?”
  42. >Nervously chuckling, your face turns red as you bury your face into Eris’ mane.
  43. “Heheh U-Um… Maybe once… Or twice… I don’t remember. Dad just gets really angry if I try to leave.”
  44. >Eris rolls her eyes and pushes through some bushes, which looks a lot like seaweed. “I don’t get why that old coot kept you locked up all the time. That’s soooo lame of him, more lame than usual…”
  45. >Oh yeah! Before you forget, you have to ask Eris something.
  46. “Heeeeeey Eriiiiis? Do you know...”
  47. >Your friend carefully moves through some branches hanging low, and you duck your head to avoid getting bonked in the face by them. You hesitate for a moment.
  48. >”Do I know what?”
  49. “Ummmmm… Do you know Dad in some way?”
  50. >”Tch, everyone in the Void knows-” She makes a silly voice and face as she says your father’s name. “-’Duhscuuuurd’. If you didn’t, he’d make sure you did… Arrogant old crazy-”
  51. “But, but! You make it sound like you two were really good friends!”
  52. >”FRIENDS?! With him?! HAH!” Eris bounces as once as she exclaims, causing you to almost lose your balance. Luckily, you’re fast enough to grab back onto her horns and continue your ride.
  53. >”He WISHES he was friends with me!” As Eris continues to argue, she starts walking up a tree, and everything shifts perspective. For a moment, you felt like you were going to fall off, but you guess Eris used her powers to shift gravity.
  55. >Why is it every time you mention Dad, Eris gets really flustered about it? Hmmmm...
  56. “I think you’re hiding something from me, and that’s not nice.”
  57. >You lean a bit forward, looking directly into Eris’ face while upside down with a pouty face.
  58. “Friends don’t hide secrets from other friends.”
  59. >”I’m telling you, I have nothing to do with that- WHOA!”
  60. >The cactus begins to shake, and suddenly you’re both tossed off of it. You hug Eris’ head and tremble as the adrenaline of free fall kicks in.
  61. >”WHAT?! I can’t fly! What the hay is going on!” Eris tries snapping her talon, but nothing happens. She tries again, and again, each time with more force and frustration. “Welp, so much for that. Hopefully we’ll be alright.” She then reclines in the air, acting like nothing is happening.
  62. “E-E-Eris! We’re fallling! Do soooomethiiiiing!”
  63. >And WAM! Wait… There’s no WAM at all. In fact, it’s as if you fell on a pillow. You look down for a moment. Blue sand covered your entire body. It feels like you’re underwater, but the sand kinda held you down like glue.
  64. “Eris! It’s like a rubbery trampoline of water!”
  65. >She looks over, giving the off one of those faces you make when you’re stuck doing essays in your room.
  66. >“Hey Anon.”
  67. “Hi. It feels squishy in here! Isn’t this cool?”
  68. >”Now that you mention it, this stuff could make for a wicked pool. Dontcha think?”
  69. >You grin widely and nod with your eyes closed.
  70. “Mhm! Wanna take some back and put it in my pool.”
  71. >”Well, if we can go back. Oh hey!” Eris perks up. “Do you have your powers, by any chance?”
  72. “Uh… Um… I don’t think using them would be a good idea…”
  73. >Eris rolls her eyes. “Well, guess we’re going to be stuck here for the rest of our lives. Well, for me, that’s forever, but for you…” The draconequus visibly cringes. “Yeeeeeah…”
  75. >You can’t be stuck here forever! Forever is a long time, and you don’t have time to be here forever! Dad needs you! Okay, maybe if you try to use-
  79. >”AHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAH! IDIOOOOOOOOOOOTS!” An echoey, creepy voice booms out of nowhere, startling you both. T-That doesn’t sound so good!
  80. “E-Eris!? What’s going on? Who is that? Why does he sound scary?!”
  81. >”Oh by the Void… Please don’t let it be-”
  82. >Out from the sand in front of you both, green flames erupt, but instead of feeling heat, you just start to feel really tired. Like that one time you stayed up all night watching all the Lord of the Rings movies.
  83. >And from the flames, a giant green ghost stuck out from the ground. It’s the color of dark green, like yucky swamp water, but had swirls of faint rainbowish color, kind of like those weird swirls you see in bubbles if you look at them close enough.
  84. >Just look at how many arms it has! One, two, three… Eight arms! Four on each side of its body. It had vertical, hollow eyes that glowed purple. Right below is a creepy smile without teeth, but the weird part is that the smile is formed by a beak.
  85. >The ghost kept the creepy smile as it slowly drifted side to side and fidgets its arms.
  86. >”You guys messed up hard this time! Done! Finished! Wanna know the number of beasts that have come out of my realm alive? ZERO!”
  87. >Eris groans and pulls her arms out of the sand. She leans against her paw, causing her face to smudge up in a silly way as she looks at the ghost annoyingly.
  88. >”Oh yeah, I knew it. This guy…”
  89. >”But wait! Hold on just a minute… You guys get to live! That’s right! What a lucky couple of saps you are!” The ghost claps two of his arms, making a slot machine pop up. “See, each time a sorry soul falls into my realm, I play this slot machine. Take a look!”
  91. >The machine lines up a picture of you and Eris three times in a row. It dings with fireworks exploding behind it, with a glowing light of words saying ‘WINNER!’.
  92. >”Usually I’d take your magic and toss you to the dangers of what lies in my realm, but today is a lucky day for you two! Too bad that won’t matter later. Unless…”
  93. >You couldn’t open your mouth, not one bit. Your fur is standing on its end, and you’re pretty sure your pupils are super tiny that your view is only on the ghost. Couldn’t even notice your own teeth chattering. Eris rolls her eyes and sighs.
  94. >”Ugh… Unless…?”
  95. >The ghost’s voice deeply chuckles as a giant wheel with different pictures with labels on them appears right in front of you. The area starts to change into a weird, greenish void of space and dark clouds. The blue sand was still there, and yep, you’re still stuck.
  96. >”You see, I have a problem. Some of my minions are a bit… What’s the word… Bonkers. More than the usual type of crazy that the Void provides. You get what I mean.”
  97. “D-Dad, I-I need Indiana Jones t-tonight!”
  98. >The ghost cackles at your reaction. “Well! It seems we’ve lost one already! That’s too bad… Getting back to the point, I came up with the amazing plan of kidnapping the next poor shmucks to enter my realm and make them do some of the dirty work that needs to get done around here. But that’s kind of hard when you play slots with lives. Most of the time...
  99. >He menacingly, but softly, laughs. “…They aren’t so fortunate. Then again, that sucks for me, because if they get screwed, I’m screwed! But that’s the exciting part of betting on some poor souls.”
  100. >Your friend scoffs. “Pahahahah! Isn’t this your realm, Lurker? Can’t you just do it yourself?” The Lurker stops moving around, freezing completely. He leans towards Eris with narrowing eyes of suspicion.
  104. >”Wait a second… I know you… You’re that old dude’s apprentice, huh?” Eris straightens out, slowly leans back, and pushes the ghost’s face away from her.
  105. >”Whoa whoa, you see this line?” Eris draws a line in the sand. “Yeah that. That’s my personal space, and you just crossed it. If I had my powers, that line would have grown a fist, and punched you right in your creepy face.” The ghost moves back to his fidgety self and smiles.
  106. >“AHAHAHAHAH! So you ARE that old dude’s apprentice! Oh man! What a catch! Kinda sucks that he’s gone now, huh?”
  107. >That snaps you out of it. That one comment about your dad. Nuh-uh! Nobody talks like that about your dad!
  108. “HEY! Leave my dad alone!”
  109. >The ghost looks towards you, his eyes squinting as he comes closer. You glare into his eyes, shoving all the fear you felt before away.
  110. >”Guess the little guy hasn’t gone off to coo-coo land. What was that…” Green fire starts to form around you, the ghost’s gaze becoming more intimidating. “Did you say… Well, sounds like somepony wants to be a husk of their former selves for the rest of their lives.”
  111. >Be brave, be brave, b-be buh buh… Brave...
  112. “U-Um…”
  113. >Thankfully, he quickly backs off and gives off that creepy smile once more. “That sucks! Because I’ll be needing you both for what I have planned. And if you complete one of the random jobs assigned to you, you MIGHT get your powers back…”
  114. >You gulp and begin to sweat. Eris blows some sand towards the ghost, causing him to shut the eye some of the sand got into.
  115. >”LEAVE HIM ALONE! Let the kid go! I can take care of his ‘job’.” The Lurker leans back, holding his gut as he cackles once more.
  117. >”AHAHAHAHAH! Isn’t that adorable! Sorry, kids. I’ll be needing BOTH of you for this operation. Now…” The green ghoul claps his arms, popping you both out of the sand and infront of the wheel. “Each of you gets a spin. Whatever lands, you have to do.”
  118. >But Eris wasn’t having any of it.
  119. >”Lurker, we don’t have to do ZIP! As if you hold any power in the Void… Now if you’ll excuse my friend and me, we have to be -Ahem…. Going!” Eris points behind her with her paw thumb.
  120. >The Lurker pouts and holds four of his arms together, as if he were holding his hands together. “Ooooooh. Poor little apprentice! She thinks she has more power over me because she’s the Void Keeper’s little pet… I CALL THE SHOTS NOW, GIRL.”
  121. >Apprentice? Old dude? Is Eris… No way! Y-You’ll ask about that later, though.
  122. >”Besides, ever since that old dude went missing, I have free reign over my realm! Although, I don’t really want to expand. Property taxes are an all time high these millennia, and I want to pay my rent, thank you. So!”
  123. >Eris gets pulled over by some force, really close to The Lurker’s face. “You’ll do… As I say, girl… Or your pet donkey over there will suffer DOUBLE- No! TRIPLE the amount of pain you’ll end up going through!” He places her back down, quite calmly, and goes back to his deal.
  124. >O-Okay. You just h-have to spin the wheel, and do what it says, r-right? Eris steps up and grabs the bottom of the wheel with her head held high and a determined look locked onto the green ghost.
  125. >”I’ll go first Anon… Show this sucker who’s boss around here!”
  126. “Wait!”
  127. >You stumble over, your legs wobbling like jelly.
  128. “I-I’ll go first, Eris!”
  129. >She shrugs. “Suit yourself, lil’ dude. You sure?”
  130. “Mhm.”
  131. >The Lurker pipes in for a moment before you spin the wheel.
  132. >”Know what, since you’ve got a kid with you, I might just give you both ONE chore to share. Don’t want any accidents happening because the kid is unprofessional.”
  133. “H-Hey!”
  134. >Eris raises an eyebrow and folds her arms. “If you want professional, how about you hire some creatures capable of the job instead of some random peeps you capture? OR OR! Even better! YOU do it yourself, you poor excuse for a ghoul!”
  135. >”’Meh meh meh! Do it yourself! Oh, hire someone else to do it!’ Pffff, what’s the fun in that? NONE! My realm, my rules, kiddo! Alright, green bean. Let’s see what method of guidance you’ll be using on the job…”
  136. “Here I g-go…”
  137. >So you grab onto one of the pegs, and give it a hard spin, despite your jello legs. You eyeball the pointer at the top as the wheel slows down ever so gradually. Eris just watches with interest, while the Lurker’s grin grows wider and wider each slowing moment.
  138. >With the last ticking sounds… It lands on…
  140. >”AHAHAHAHAHAHAH! How unfortunate! Looks like you’re just going to have a crummy, old compass to help you! A little hint, north doesn’t really mean north around these parts. I’m not even sure if it has directions! Oh well!”
  141. “Well… It’s better than nothing, right Eris!”
  142. >You look towards your friend and grin, trying to be as positive as you could. Keep everypony happy, and things will be okay. Eris rolls her eyes and shrugs.
  143. >”It’d be better if we got a hammer to clobber this idiot with.” The Lurker coughs, and then beckons Eris.
  144. >“You’re up next, little apprentice.”
  145. >Eris stomps over, grabs the bottom of the wheel so hard that it chips off a bit, and swings it so hard that some of the pegs go flying. Then she stomps over to the Lurker, points her talon finger up to him, and mutters.
  146. >”...And you better not call me by that name.” She turns around and walks back towards the wheel, folding her arms. “Eris will be fine.”
  147. >”Suit yourself. Names won’t get your powers back any sooner. Now let’s see...” The images on the wheel change suddenly to what evil thing we have to do for this weirdo. It eventually comes to a stop on… “What? But I thought- I thought I did that some time ago!” Eris reads off what the wheel says while the Lurker scratches his head confusingly.
  148. >”Deliver a care package to this address… That’s it? What address?!” The Lurker perks up, dancing around in place as he beams one of the happiest smiles yet.
  149. >”HAH! Guess you’ll have to find out yourself! AHAHAHAHAH! Sucks to be you! Hmmm…” The ghost ponders. “I suppose I do want you to suffer for eternity… Then again, I need these chores done… Alright, fine, take your prize. I even ‘upgraded’ it for you.” He tosses a compass over to you. You tilt your head and look at it.
  151. >The compass was filled with a strange, green liquid, kind of like the Lurker’s skin, but more see-through. Inside was a tiny little puffer fish with a needle sticking out of its face like a nose. And instead of fins, it had legs arms with swimming gear on.
  152. “What is this thing?”
  153. >”You kidding me, kid? It’s a compass! It’ll guide you to where you have to deliver the package. But it won’t necessarily give you the… Hehehe… Safest route.” Eris snatches it up and shifts it around, examining it while speaking again.
  154. “But that’s not a compass, it’s some weird fish tank thingy!”
  155. >”So if we do your dirty house work… You’ll give us our powers and let us go?”
  156. >The Lurker stops dancing and points to the wheel. ”By playing the ‘Life Gambling Game (™)’, you accepted the terms and conditions listed behind that compass you have!” What?! Terms and conditions?!
  157. “There were no terms and conditions, meanie! And this isn’t a compass!”
  158. >”Sorry that you didn’t ask about them, kiddo! Maybe next time, you’ll be more responsible when you gamble with fate. And I don’t know what you’re complaining about, that’s a standard compass!”
  159. >The ghost puts on some glasses, pulls out a parchment, and reads off of it.
  160. >“To answer your question, you’ll get your powers back as soon as you clock in with PROOF that you’ve finished your obligations. Such as time stamped photos, video, sample evidence, etc…” The parchment burns up into green flames, turning into dragonflies that fly away. “Sound fair?”
  162. >Eris rolls her eyes and turns around, walking into the green space.
  163. >”Pfff, if you call stealing someone’s power’s for blackmail fair… C’mon Anon.” Eris waves over to you. “We have to do this lazy hobo’s errands.”
  164. >”Glad we’ve come to terms! Don’t be so sour! Finish those jobs fast, and you’ll have your powers back in no time.”
  165. >The green void fades away, and you’re all back in the sandy blue cactus forest. You trot over towards Eris and hug onto whichever leg, you don’t care, you just needed something to snuggle after meeting that creep.
  166. >”Oh! By the way! I have your powers in this flask. I’ll leave them right on this podium as a reminder of your obligations.” The Lurker claps, and just like he said, a crumbled stone podium with spikey vines around it erupts from the sand. He places a flask with these purple whispy things on the podium.
  167. >”Or maybe I just want to see your attempts to cheat the deal. Tough luck, you’d just be wasting your time. Well! I’ve spent enough of my time with you losers, so the next time I see you two, it either be to check in your chores, or rip you to shreds. I prefer the latter. Later gators!”
  168. >He spins in place, and sinks back into the ground. The sand around him sinks back in place as he disappears. G-Guess you’ll start thinking of a way to getting that package to that pony or something.
  171. >Hmmm… You rub your chin with your hoof as you walk behind Eris, who was angrily slouching and stomping forward.
  172. >”Tch, who does that guy think he is? Taking our powers… ‘Meh meh meh! I’m the Lurker, I stalk creatures and creep them out! I’m so lazy, I have to kidnap a kid and a teenager to do my chores!”
  173. >Know what, who cares what the Lurker says? He’s a big meanie anyways, so he might just be trying to trick you!
  174. >”Ugh… Walking sucks. Hold on, Anon. Let me whip us up a ride. I would teleport us there, but I need some time to think some things through.” Eris attempts to snap, but nothing happens, once again.
  175. >B-But what if he doesn’t trick you, a-and feeds you to some weird hippo-snake? Okay, be brave, Anon! You took down some scary baddies in a disco battle, you’ve gotten this far in the Void- Then again, you did get Eris’ help… She’ll be by your side, anyways! Teamwork! Yaaaay!
  176. “You got this, Anon! A Crystal Knight never shatters their hope! Hm, yeah, that works. That’s something King Lattice would say.”
  177. >You look up at Eris, who was frustratingly snapping her talon every couple of seconds.
  178. >”Hot air balloon? *snap* No? Okay, how about a race car! *snap* Seriously?! Ummm.. Think Eris, think- OH! Sleigh Piranhas? *snap* GRRRR…”
  179. >Tugging on Eris’ arm, you beam a smile.
  180. “Eris, we can’t use our powers, remember? Besides, this place looks so cooooool! We can do some sight-seeing, have some fun on this weird, squishy sand, maybe talk to some of the creatures-“
  181. >Eris slowly turns and looks down at you. Once more, she huffs, causing part of her mane to get pushed by the sudden gust of air. She presses her back against a cactus tree, and slides down until she lands sitting down on the blue sand.
  183. >”I don’t have time- I mean, we don’t have time for this! I’m not some weirdo’s errand girl! Plus, this place is exactly what and why I HATE the Void. It tries to be… Too weird.”
  184. >You lay next to your friend, nuzzling her arm to make her feel better.
  185. “C’mooon, you’re the weirdest pony I know-“
  186. >”Draconequus.”
  187. “Well, you and Dad are kinda the same.”
  188. >”And just when I thought things could get worse.” She crosses her arms and looks away from you. Uh oh! She’s angry! Uh uh, think Anon! Ummm- Oh!
  189. “Think of all the adventures we can have here! Yeah, it’s not Equestria, and the Void does get kinda boring after a while… But with friends, anything can be fun! Right?”
  190. >Eris rolls her eyes and scoffs. “I suppose… Everything is fun with me, but having you, I guess it gives it a tiny boost of fun.” You squee at her comment and start trotting around her.
  191. “So what are we waiting for? Somepony out there needs their care package! A duty we have to hold!”
  192. >Eris giggles, gets up, and scoops you up onto her shoulder. You cling against the back of her shoulder cheerfully and comfortably.
  193. >”Oooorrr… We can prank that stupid ghost and get our powers back without doing anything!
  194. “Yeah- Wait, what?! We can’t do that!”
  195. >”Now let me just get us a map of this chaosfest.” She just can’t get used to it, can she? “…GrrrrrrRRRRRRR! BY THE VOID! THIS IS ANNOYING AS HAY! ARRRRGH!” And now she’s wrestling with her talon arm. You fall off, but thankfully land safely on your hooves. “WORK, DARNIT!”
  196. “E-Eris, maybe we should take a break. Maybe find a comfy place until-“
  198. >The talon arm slugs Eris right across her face, causing her entire neck and head to twist. Eris turns back towards her arm, teeth gritting, eyebrows furrowed, and eyes so narrowed with anger, it caused you to flinch.
  199. >”Why you little… I will bite you off if I have to! Now work! *snap*”
  200. >The talon wags a finger at her, and slaps her face. Eris strangles the talon wrist, making it start to spasm and jerk around.
  201. >”PAHAHA! Got you!”
  202. “Eris.”
  203. >”How would you like it if I twist your thumb? Yeah, didn’t think you’d like it!”
  204. “Eris!”
  205. >”Pahahah! I know myself better than anypony- AGH! STOP TICKLING ME! PAHAHAHA! THAT’S CHEATING- PAHAHAHAHAHA!”
  206. “ERIS!”
  207. >Both the arm and Eris stop at the same time, and face you.
  208. “Please, stop that! I don’t like seeing you hurt yourself.”
  209. >Simultaneously, Eris points at her talon arm while her talon arm points back at her.
  210. >”She did it.”
  211. “Both of you are being ridiculous and silly! Now what do you say?”
  212. >Eris and her arm shrug. “Let bygones be bygones until one of us lets our guard down?”
  213. “No! Say sorry.”
  214. >You fall backwards onto your rump, and cross your forelegs with an angry pouty face.
  215. >”Say sorry? To THAT thing?!” The draconequus disgustingly points towards her talon arm, which looks away in the same attitude.
  216. “We don’t have our powers, but that just means we have to do things MY way!”
  217. >You triumphantly spring up onto all fours, and stand heroically.
  218. “The PONY way!”
  220. >”Ugh, the pony way is sooooo laaaaaaame. Am I right?”
  221. >She looks towards her talon arm, which the claw nods in response. “Alright, truce?” The claw nods again. Both Eris and her arm shake on it.
  222. >Yay! Everypony is friends again! Or well, everypony’s parts aren’t trying to hit each other.
  223. “And we have to deliver the package.”
  224. >Eris dusts herself off, stands up, crosses her arms, and laughs at your comment.
  225. >”Pahahahahah- No.”
  226. “Eris… That pony needs that care package! What if it’s some baked goods from their mommy or daddy?”
  227. >”Considering the Lurker is the one requesting the devliery, it’s probably more hidden cameras… Dumb weirdo.” Eris grabs your shoulders and starts shaking you. “C’mon, Anon! Don’t you wanna see your bestest friend, Eris, in pranking action?”
  228. >You hesitate, looking down and to the side, considering her words.
  229. “I dunnoooo…”
  230. >She starts to crazily grin and brings her face closer to yours. “Think about it! We could come up with one of the greatest pranks of the millennia! It could just be like in the story I told you.”
  231. >Just like the story?! Oh boy! Your tail starts to wag as your face brightens up from the thoughts of pulling silly pranks with your bestest friend!
  232. “Mhm, mhm! Just like how you taught Luna and Celestia!”
  234. >Eris lets you go and starts chuckling to herself. She’s so giddy with excitement, that she can hardly stand still, pacing back and forth in the spooky forest. The box shaped bugs start to fly away from the area as your friend thinks and walks around.
  235. >”GREAT! Okay, I may not have my powers, and you may not have yours, but that just means we have to think… Ogh…” All her enthusiasm leaves as she realizes that she has to do things the BEST way!
  236. “Think like…?”
  237. >You smile gets bigger and bigger, eyes shining more and more as you wait for her response.
  238. >”Think like… Ugh… Ponies-“
  240. >Eris flinches at your sudden outburst, but smugly folds her arms and smirks while putting more weight on one of her legs.
  241. >”So, Mr. Son of Chaos, what is it you ‘ponies’ do when it comes to not using chaos magic?”
  242. “Weeeelll!”
  243. >Let’s see… The thing is, it’s not REALLY the pony way, but since Dad was always afraid of you using your powers, he taught you how to prank and cause mischief without using them.
  244. “Like Dad always says-“
  245. >The draconequus quickly places her paw finger against your lips, shushing you. Your face scrunches up.
  246. >”Ah bup bup. No one cares what your Dad said. And I mean no one.” Backing away, you raise an eyebrow and curiously look at Eris.
  247. “Eris… Friends tell friends everything, okay?”
  248. >She rolls her eyes and rotates her talon wrist as she speaks. “Yeah yeah yeah, friends share secrets! How could I… Forget… Ahem…”
  249. “Soooo… The Lurker said you were… Dad’s apprentice?”
  250. >Eris sighs and looks off into the distance of the shadowy ocean of noodle bushes and cactus trees. You trot on over to her and nuzzle her leg.
  251. “It’s okay. You can tell me. I promise I won’t tell anypony else.”
  252. >Your friend looks down, letting a faint small escape her sad face. She pats your mane and looks around.
  254. “Alright, alright, lil’ dude… How about we find a comfy place to camp out. It’s been a long day for the both of us.”
  255. >Her tone changes to a more malicious one; one that escapes her gritted teeth as she intensely examines the forest. ”Bet that creep will get a kick out of it… Grr…”
  256. “Yaaay! More story time! But story time always needs a cozy bed, and some warm milk, and some toys- Oh…”
  257. >There are no toys, or comfy beds, or even warm milk in this… Scary… Creepy… Spooky!-
  258. “Oooph!”
  259. >”C’mon, you big baby! We won’t find camp if you just daydream! Maybe if we had our powers.” H-Hey! She scooped you up and placed you over her shoulder! L-Like a foal!
  260. “Lemme go! I can walk just fine, you know!”
  261. >Eris walks forward with a cocky grin through slimy balls of bushes. “Yeah, but watching you get all flustered is adorable, and also, consider yourself lucky. No one gets this close to mwah!”
  262. >You roll your eyes and rest your chin against her shoulder in defeat.
  263. “Yeah well! Hmmnng… I’m not a baby… At least hold me like you did last time! And why aren’t you saying ‘everyone’ instead of ‘everypony’ all of a sudden?”
  264. >”Eh, unlike most ponies I’ve met, and courtesy towards Void dwellers and non-ponies, I respect those who aren’t ponies… To an extent.” It’s getting pretty dark now, and those purple cloud tornados are fogging up the sky and… Is that a giant glowstick in the sky? Cool- Oh! Right! Talking to Eris.
  265. “You even talk like Dad a lot! Using big words when you explain things seriously! So, you’re saying that to make sure you don’t hurt noponies- I mean, no one’s feelings?”
  267. >She’s trying really hard not to get angry right now. Maybe stop with talking about Dad. “Yeeesss… Not like it matters being respectful, creatures adore me either way. I’m just that great. But you should start making that a habit. Some creatures do get offended if you don’t.”
  268. >You lift up your head, stretching your neck over your shoulder to look behind you and at Eris.
  269. “Do your feelings get hurt?”
  270. >She shrugs.
  271. >”Nah, I could care less. Honestly, why would anyone care? Then again, ponies always stick to themselves… Freak out over anything that isn’t normal or comfortable…” Why does Eris look so glum all of a sudden?
  272. “Eris, do you want to talk about your feelings?”
  273. >Whoa! Why did we stop all of a sudden? Oh no, her face is turning green. You frantically pat her back with your hooves.
  274. “Uh, uh, uh!”
  275. >But she swallows whatever was coming up, with a shudder. “Eugehehgh... Feelings… Gross.”
  276. “Well, from the friends I made back in my books, and what I’ve read, ponies say that sharing their feelings always makes them feel better.
  277. >Eris pushes past some Wipplerum branches to a big opening in the forest. “Pff, yeah, if you’re a lame pony- Ah! No offense! Y-You’re not lame, Anon!”
  278. “But I’m not a pony.”
  279. >She places you gently down in the center of the opening, where you can see an opening in the purple cloudy storm, allowing the neon blue moonlight glowstick light the area.
  280. >”But you are a pony. Just look at you! That’s a cute colt if I’ve ever seen one.”
  281. >Stoooooop!
  282. >”And who could mistake that adorable, angry face that all ponies seem to make? The scrunching up, the furrowed, heart attack inducing eyebrows? And don’t forgeeeeeet…”
  284. >You groan and look away, blushing.
  285. “Okay okay! I get it!”
  286. >And then you sigh, thinking about what you said about not being a pony.
  287. “But I’m not a pony… I never will be, even if I look like one… I’ll always be a Spirit of Chaos.”
  288. >”Heeeey! Being a Spirit of Chaos is fun! It’s way better than being a regular, lame, pony- I mean! You’re the most awesome of them all! Because nopony else, and I mean that exclusively…” She leans down and pulls you with an arm wrapped around your neck. “Nopony else, is friends with the best. And that’s me.”
  289. >Out of your own frustration, you accidentally yell and push away from Eris’ embrace.
  290. “Then why can’t I just be one or the other?! Why do I have to be- T-To be both!?”
  291. >The forest goes silent, as bugs, squids, and other weird creatures fly or scurry away. O-Oh no… You didn’t mean to…
  292. “E-Eris, I’m sorry, I d-didn’t mean to…”
  293. >The draconequus simply holds up her paw, shutting her eyes with a sigh. She quickly glances around, and finds a giant sleeping butterfly toad. With some effort, she drags it over to the center, climbs ontop of it, and pats the spot right next to her.
  294. >”C’mon. Let me answer that terrible, terrible question you asked earlier.” Dragging yourself over, you timidly walk towards the giant toad. You struggle to get on top, but Eris lends you a claw and helps you up. You sit next to her and wait patiently for her response.
  295. >”………..”
  296. “…………”
  297. >”………..”
  298. “…..So… Are you going to tell me the story?”
  299. >”What? Oh! We’re still going through with that?” You pout and cross your forelegs.
  300. “Eriiiis!”
  301. >”Okay okay! Jeez. You’re a nosey lil’ fella. But first!” She slams her paw down against the frogs head, causing it to spit fire infront of you both into the air.
  302. “Whooooaaa!”
  304. >”Can’t have a good story in a weird forest without a campfire, amiright? Anyways.” The draconequus sighs once more, closing her eyes and tipping her head down. She opens her eyes once more, and starts retelling something you were really shocked to hear.
  306. >I know that you’ve noticed my… Disdain for your father… And I won’t blame you for getting all angry about it. You love him, and no doubt, he raised you to be the awesome, adorable colt you are now. That still baffles me, but maybe there’s something about him… A side that only you see when you’re around that old coot…
  308. >Like most of my stories, they don’t start at the beginning, or the end… Neither do your father’s, I bet. If I were to pitch the best prank of the millennia, it’s saying that your dad and I have more in common than I would like to believe.
  310. “Why do I always have to do things YOUR way? Why can’t I do it MY way, you goat rug!”
  311. >”Because MY way is the most chaotic way! The most perfected way to imperfection! The most organized variation of disorder achievable! The-“
  312. “Aaaaand here you go, babbling on like you always do about how ‘I do chaos better! Meh meh meh!’ Now if we do it MY way, I bet it could top that simple animation spell. It’ll blow it into the water.”
  313. >”Well, my spell blows the water out along with whatever was being blown out in the first place. Hmph.” The old draconequus folds his arms and turns away from the young, teenage, female draconequus. I floated over and balled my talon and paw fist, flames fuming from my ears.
  314. “A-Are you SERIOUS?! Oh, of course not! None of us are! We’re not supposed to be serious! Never!”
  315. >Discord snaps his talon, which conjures up a massage chair with multiple arms attached to it. He sits in it, and the arms start to work on all the knots that randomly start to appear on his fur. One pair of hands starts to rub his temples for him.
  317. >”It’s idiotic statements like those that prevent you from being any good at chaos, Eris. Your failures are so disappointing, they’re literally banging my head with a headache.” He tips his head forward as the lid on his head pops open, revealing little scenarios of my failed attempts. All of them result in Discord’s brain getting banged up or tossed around.
  318. >The hatch closes, and Discord lifts his head back up. On the otherhoof, I decided to teleport behind the massage chair, rip an arm off, and start poking him with it during every other word of my sentence.
  319. “If somebody wasn’t such a jerk, maybe, oh just maybe! Creatures would actually like him, and maybe he’d actually be a competent teacher! What do you think, Eris?
  320. >One of my clones appears and nods in agreeance.
  321. “I totally agree. And that’s not my only opinion. Two thousand, four hundred fifty five Eris’, still counting, are also on the same boat.”
  322. >An entire line of clones trailed behind the original clone, all of them looking furious and doing something to vent their anger towards Discord.
  323. >The teacher grabs the poking device and snaps it into two pieces, causing it to turn into toy snakes that float away. “Look at you, copying my clone tactic. And sadly, with poor replication. No variety, no taste. It’s revolting just watching!” A Discord clone appears right next to the original one, leaning against him and shaking his head.
  324. >”Why do you even bother with her?”
  325. >”I don’t know. Honestly, I can watch over the Gateway just fine on my own!”
  326. >”For shame… Such a disgrace to her own kind-“
  327. >And that’s when I had enough of his trash. All of my clones shout in unison.
  328. “SHUT UP!”
  330. >They all pop out of existence, the real me teleporting infront of the Discord clone, punching him right in the gut. The clone pops like a balloon, and starts flying through the air until the empty, airless body floats to the ground.
  331. >Discord snaps his talon, causing the clone to disappear. “Watch that temper, lady. Chaos is about being calm, yet subtly ferocious. Finesse, Eris. Finesse! Your diet lacks it.”
  332. >I trembled, balling my claw and talon paw into fists again so hard, they shatter.
  333. “I’ll show you finesse…”
  334. >My paw and talon reformed. I snapped my talon, causing Discord’s mane to turn into a skunk. But Discord countered that with his own snap, turning my mane into a next of wasps. And then I countered THAT snap by turning Discord into a cheese grater.
  335. >And so the teacher and the apprentice went back and forth for days, upon weeks, upon months, pointlessly bickering to no end.
  337. >As you could tell from that episode, we didn’t get along well… We’re too alike in every way, shape, and form. For the other draconequus’, it casted a shadow upon me. The type of shadow that rips out of the fabric of reality and starts attacking you- Whatever, you get what I mean. None of the others noticed me for me.
  338. >I could never, ever amount to the status of your father. I was appointed apprentice, because out of all the other draconequus, heck, even chaos beings, I was the only one competent and talented enough to take up the job as Gatekeeper. I’ve always been the best.
  340. >Yet Discord always said I stole or took inspiration from HIM! But I did everything on my own! My ideas, my spells, MY chaos! Still… I just couldn’t take it. I didn’t want to just be seen as his lacky. Someone just under him, a fool trying to be like him, when all I was trying to do…
  341. >Was be different… Afterall, that’s what chaos is all about. Being different. That’s all there is to it. Different from what’s expected, different from reality, different from mind, thought, space, time; different from all of it!
  342. >I hate, more than anything in this stupid Void, being compared to anyone. I’m Eris, and there’s no one as cool, amazing, and good at chaos like me.
  344. >You interrupt for a moment, hugging onto Eris.
  345. “But you are different from Dad. In many ways, Eris! Even if you don’t like feelings, sometimes, you’re better with them than Dad.”
  346. >”You… You really think…?” Tears begin to swell up in her eyes, and she panics. “W-What’s going on? Why are my eyes getting all blurry?”
  347. “Eris… Are you crying?”
  348. >”W-Wha? This is crying? Crying normally feels so… Weird… But it makes me want to cry more. Like, like, an entire river.”
  349. >Nuzzling your friend, you comfort her the best you can.
  350. “Sometimes it feels better to cry. And that’s something Dad never taught me. I don’t think he understands feelings like you do, Eris.”
  351. >She hugs you and snuggles you back, hiccupping occasionally. “Huck! T-Thanks, lil’ dude- Huck! Y-You’re… You may be just as- Huck! Cool as me…”
  352. >You share the moment, snuggling and comforting each other near the warm fire as the little wisps of flame reach the sky. But another question scratched your noggin’.
  353. “Then… Why did you leave Dad? Why didn’t you just talk to him?”
  354. >Your friends wipes her tears and holds onto you snuggly. “Tch, c’mon. You know your father just as well as I do. When it comes to anyone else, there’s no room for negotiation- Huck! Agh! What the hay is going on to my throat?”
  355. >You giggle and smile.
  356. “Those are hiccups! Don’t worry, they go away. Usually they come when you get scared, or eat something too fast, or cry.”
  357. >”Well, they better not interrupt the rest of the story- Huck! Dangit!”
  359. >Well, you think I didn’t try talking to that crazy geezer? Think again, lil’ dude. For that amount of power, knowledge, and experience that old coot has, you’d think, you would THINK that he could take a hint. Naw. I knew trying to talk things out was a lost cause.
  360. >…So I ran away. Far away from the Void. I didn’t want to see anything about chaos ever again. I got sick of it all. Sick of it, just like you have. I teleported, opened rifts, and flew across plains. Anything required to get away from… This place…
  361. >That’s when I found... Let’s just say somebody helped me out. Showed me a hidden rip in the Void to, well… Equestria. And from then on, I never turned back. A new life, with new creatures, in a new world. Or well, so I thought. But that’s a story for another time, eh?
  363. “Wait a second!”
  364. >You point towards Eris with a confusing look.
  365. “You said you never went back, but you saved me! Why did you go back?”
  366. >Eris looks up and purses her lips. She opens her mouth, but nothing comes out at first.
  367. >”Hmph… I guess even if I say I hate it… I have a job to fulfill, and since your dad, where ever he is, is gone… Something, like an itch, told me there was something wrong in the Void.” She smiles and folds her arms confidently. “Heh! Seems like I was right, once again! Like I said, always been the best!”
  368. >You nod.
  369. “Mhm! And you saved me, and became my bestest friend I ever had! I hope we start friends forever.”
  370. >Eris gets startled all of a sudden, as if she remembered something. She cringes, but quickly regains her composure, petting your mane awkwardly. “R-Riiggght… Yeaaah. Friends forever! Wooo! Awww crud…”
  371. “Eris, you’re acting weird again-“
  375. >”Aheheheh! Bravo, BRAVO!” A clapping sound echoes from the depths of the forest. You both look over and squint. Eris quickly, but gently, pushes you off next to her. “Ohohoho! Don’t try hiding it, apprentice! I saw you having your lovey dovey moment!”
  376. >Eris raises an eyebrow and looks at the pair of glowing eyes staring right at us with a look of utter disapproval. “Lovey dovey? What the hay are you- That’s just sick, dude!”
  377. >The eyes disappear, and out of the blue sand behind you, the Lurker pops out. The frog suddenly wakes up, gulps up its flame, and turns around. Its eyes widen at the sight of the ghoul. It bucks you both off, sending you flying face first into the sand as it jogs away on its hindelegs.
  378. “WHOOAAAAmph!”
  379. >You sputter and spit the sand that got into your mouth, getting and standing up on all fours again.
  380. “Get away from us, meanie! This is our camp!”
  381. >The Lurker grins and cackles. “BWAHAHAHAHAH! Huh, that’s oddly peculiar. If I recall, this is… MY, domain? Or has your little romance session hazed any memory or logical sense?”
  382. “R-Romance? Eriiiiis, what is he talking about?”
  383. >Eris pulls her head out of the sand, blowing the bangs of her mane away from her face. “Don’t listen to this sicko. Seriously, just UGH! Can you be anymore of a creep?” The ghost smirks, leaning in up close towards you.
  384. >”I’ve seen lots of things, kiddo, and I know, I KNOW, when I see two love birds going at it! But wait! I apologize, I seem to have ruined the moment.” He goes back into the ground, disappearing entirely. “Okay okay! Just pretend I never approached you, go back to what you were doing, and I’ll take a snapshot of you two smooching-“
  386. >”For the love of the Void! Shut up already, you freak!” Eris jolts up and stomps towards the direction of the voice. “Do you have to stalk every living, breathing, sentient thing in the Void? Gosh!”
  387. >Wha? Huh? What is he…? Romance? Love birds…? Smooching- OH NO.
  388. “……….”
  389. >You look at Eris, and then think of you two- You shake your head frantically.
  390. “EWWWWWWWWWWWW! I don’t want cooties! Gross! Eris is my friend, you weirdo!”
  391. >The voice speaks again. “Kid, you just don’t understand! With the experience and knowledge that I have… You just KNOW these things. Eh, you’ll understand when you’re older.” Suddenly, Eris yanks the Lurker out of the forest, right by his dark green neck. “What the- How did you-“
  392. >”You listen here… You stop stalking us, and let us do your stupid chore so we can get our powers back.”
  393. >”And how did you-“
  394. >”So STOP stalking us, and stop with your weird, disgusting fantasies! He’s just a kid! That’s just… Just…”
  395. >The Lurker wiggles his eye sockets. “Weeeeiiird? I know, right?! That’s why I think you two make a cute couple-“ Eris punches him right between the eyes, sending him back into the dark. “Ooof! Ack! Ow! Jeez… Well well well… Ya know something, apprentice?
  396. >Eris grits her teeth and speaks through them. “Don’t. Call. Me. That.”
  397. >”You know, you’re a lot feistier than I recall seeing… Protecting your wittle pony feelings? Oh boohoo! Are you going to cry? BAHAHAHAHAHAHAH!”
  398. “HEY!”
  399. >Eris, and you’re assuming the Lurker, turn towards you shockingly. You stomp over with the meanest, angriest face ever.
  402. “You leave my friend alone, you gross ghost! And stop following us! Only weirdos and spies spy on people! And you’re not a spy!”
  403. >Eris folds her arms and smirks. “Huh… Yeah, what Anon said. Get lost, Lurker!”
  404. “Yeah! Get lost!”
  405. >The Lurker grumbles and groans. “Fine. I’ll go. And, I’ll even stop supervising you, just so you can get that chore done faster.” Eris scoffs.
  406. >”Supervising? That’s what you’re calling it? That’s rich.”
  407. >”I swear! That’s all I was doing! Yeesh. Hire a couple of kids and they want to do everything on their own. Hopefully, the next time I see you, I won’t be getting a verbal response. Take that as you will! Later love birds.”
  408. >”Is he- Did he just really- Oh my chaos. That guy makes me want to hurl my guts.”
  409. “Ewwwww. And I don’t want cooties!”
  410. >Eris narrows her eyes and stares at you. “…We have to work on that stupid cootie thing your dad told you.”
  411. >And so you and Eris decide to use some of the Wipplerum leaves to make a little shelter, or well, a blanket underneath a cactus, to get a comfy, warm, goodnight sleep. Once everything was all set, you snuggled under the leaf blanket next to Eris.
  412. >”Eh, don’t get too close.” Eris shifts around and makes sure the blanket isn’t going to break.
  413. “Don’t worry, I don’t want to get cooties.”
  414. >Your friend chuckles, rolls her eyes, and turns her back against you. “Oho kay, whatever you say, Anon. Night.”
  415. “Wait!”
  416. >You frantically look around. You need milk! You can’t sleep without it!
  417. “Where’s my warm milk? I need it to sleep!”
  418. >”Dude, we’re in the middle of nowhere. There’s maybe some Gibble Sap in the cactus, but that isn’t warm milk. Just try to get some sleep. I’m beat…”
  419. “B-But…”
  420. >Oh no… This is going to be a looooooong night.
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