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PrinceBlueblood last won the day on December 11

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About PrinceBlueblood

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    The Once and Future Prince
  • Birthday 07/28/1991

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    Books, games, and general internet doings

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  • Main Character
    Prince Blueblood
  • Character 2
    Earth Writer
  • Character 3
    Feng Yinhaitao
  • Character 4
    Wordsworth Psmith

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    PrinceBlueblood #8840

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  1. Shining Armor was frankly relieved to see that his ideas about the source and solution to the REA's ponypower problem was being taken seriously. It had been a bit of a cross-disciplinary research gamble, but doing his homework had paid off. He nodded at the feedback of his suggestion, "Civil Defense Squads is a better name, and Harmony Councils would be the civilian activist equivalent, I'm guessing? I don't think there's going to be a hard-and-fast line between the two, at first. We don't want to kill any organic momentum this idea has through micromanagement of its organizing principles. We also want to give them freedom to experiment, while keeping their efforts organizationally quarantined from our formal military, just in case they don't work out. A one-way gate for innovation, as it were." Already paper was coming out, as they worked out the details regarding this. Shining agreed completely with Twilight about the increase in financial benefits, enough so to tune out long enough to greet Admiral Chaser. "Good to see you, sir." As was to be expected, General Pummel had his own ideas regarding solving the problem of national identity, which Shining dutifully noted. Once he finished jotting it all down and looking at it, he frowned somewhat. "So that's... what, a septupling of the General Education Budget, at least? Add that to the increased pay and benefits- you have cleared these numbers against the treasury, right? Do we have enough bits to pay for all of this?" And that was just the beginning. Equestria ran on hard currency, which made it an attractive place to do business in many ways, but it did mean that inflating the currency to pay for a high degree of spending was just not an option at this point. "I know as far as the Crystal Empire is concerned, we certainly wouldn't, not without grants and donations from the south." That was, more or less, the extent of his concerns. Coming from a family valuing academic achievement so highly, seven years of schooling didn't seem at all excessive to him, as it might have to a pony from a different background... ___________ Next on the Agenda was Internal Logistics, a subject on which Shining Armor had already touched, and could speak on at length. "Obviously, we're going to need to do a lot of public-private partnerships to establish these routes; they're just so capital-intensive we can't do them otherwise. I know for the Crystal Empire, Swift Squall was willing to invest heavily in the creation of a new rail line, and had even floated the idea of a seaport. Of course, the problem is, that constructing either means extensive work outside the hospitable magic field of the Empire, and in the case of the Seaport, in disputed territory. One of the things our royal Crystaller, Sunburst, was working on was a manner of extending the bounds of the Empire in a kind of corridor, to allow easier traffic and rail construction. As for the port... honestly, securing the Northern Shipping route is more in Admiral Chaser's wheelhouse; I don't see us making much progress there until the Whitescar Civil War is settled, and we can sweep the Raiders off the sea. One of the Loyalist Clan leaders, Halvard, wrote to me offering Vakstyra partnership in constructing a seaport and keeping it ice-free in exchange for channeling trade through his clan, again, pending completion of the Civil War. "I'm not so familiar with the problems down south, honestly. Moving Manufacturing to the heartland while keeping our shipping ports in the Strand would automatically incentivize increased transport investment, but I'm not sure how you could direct that." ____________ On Equipment, Shining had a small file to hand over himself. "Some of my own findings. A lot of the Crystal Guard needed Equipment upgrades themselves, but in some cases, our Crystallurgy produced higher-quality products than Equestrian metallurgy, at least in terms of armored materials. Especially magic-resistant equipment. Trouble is, we just don't have that many Crystographers at that level of skill. I've had some thoughts about mechanizing production, but that's likely to be some time in the future. "Oh, and Jarl Sigrun gave us a sample of Askrwood. Have you taken a look at it? Fantastic stuff; if you built a ship out of it, it would just fly, and have a more durable hull than what we have rolling off the production lines currently. But we're not going to get enough of it to do so until that Civil War is resolved..." _________ Shining found he had less to say about either the spatial or organizational layout of the Military Forces, as technically the Crystal Guard was its own command in both. Same with the Fleets in Air and Sea; honestly, Prince Blueblood could advise better than he could on that, civilian though he was. The last and final points, though, roused him from an agreeable and observant silence. "I am familiar, yes. Are you familiar with the loopholes that have existed about as long as the regulations?" He asked his sister, and he would be honestly surprised if the answer was 'no.' "It's true that we haven't had formal Battlemage or OWC units in that time, but that doesn't mean the capabilities have been lost. Technically speaking, I'm a Battlemage, just not in the Dark School. 'Battlemage' simply is a class indicating the offensive or defensive capabilities of a unicorn's magic in a fight. Many of the Magic Guild members also qualify; if you've ever seen the tier rankings in their 'practice duel' tournaments you'll be able to see which of them they are. From time to time, they used to be sworn in as 'special constables' to deal with a particularly huge problem. "Same with OWC. Technically, we still kept a unit that was grandfathered in because they were Commander Hurricane's personal unit, way back in the founding. We just cut their budget down to nothing, and they had to find alternative ways of funding, which they did by turning unorthodox weather control techniques into spectacle stunts." He gave a little smirk towards General Pummel, whose feelings on the unit were well known. "We know them as the 'Wonderbolts' today." "In all seriousness," Shiny concluded, taking up Twilight on her offer of water, "We still have old remnants of both disciplines, though not to their full past strength, that we could mobilize fairly easily. I don't think you'll find as much objection to either as you anticipate. The regs were passed in a panic, but both were too useful to let go of entirely. As for keeping control of both..." He sighed. "I mean, that comes back down to what I mentioned before. A sword can hurt or protect; the question always is the heart of the pony wielding it."
  2. To say that Blueblood's mentor was full of surprises was merely to state the corollary of her being an alicorn. That said, her being an actual teacher at some point in her life wasn't so great a surprise to her current student. His compliment, after all, had been sincere. Equally as sincere as any flirting between them, anyway. At least from his side; the Prince was in a very real way, besotted, and Ossia had to know it. "Ooh, I'd like that. We could go out in a matching set! After all, every good team needs it's uniform!" He grinned, lifting his tumbler up in a toast before downing the last of the liquor inside. "And yes, I did read it. It all seemed to be a bit obvious after I'd done with it, but that's the real sign of a brainy chap, isn't it? Being the first to think of that sort of thing." Hm, perhaps it would be wise to wait until that little drink had its full course through Blueblood's system, it was loosening his tongue to a great degree. It didn't affect the steadiness of his magic, however, as he easily retrieved the Glamour Garnet and the Aqua-Marine, the standard issue relic kit for his expeditions. "And to Long Guo? Hardly; they only recently opened up their borders after a period of isolationism. It seems to vary from ruler to ruler, honestly."
  3. Though some of the circumstances around the lunch were admittedly stressful, Blueblood found his mood fortified through the consumption of protein. Vague memories of fish being "brain food" also percolated through his mind, reassuring him that whatever was thrown at him next, he would soon find himself with the capabilities to handle it. Most of all, however, was simply the pleasant post-meal lassitude that followed a heavy lunch, which combined with all that had been done on the way in, led him to relax on Niil's back, almost nestling into the fur. ["It would be good of you to know the language..."] Blueblood mused, lying back to rest the back of his neck on the back of the Spinx's. ["I wonder if it wouldn't be a better idea to just extend the magical translation spell you and I have. It would be quicker. On the other hand... well, magic of that power can have unintended consequences. Why else do you think I am sometimes a mare?"] He observed the pair of dogs while talking with his giant servant, content to eavesdrop without interjecting.
  4. Earth Writer nodded. "No pony is a hero to their valet. But there an obverse that is also true, that every pony would be a valet for their hero. Or, heroine as the case may be. And it usually is for stallions, I've come to learn." They were just not always wise in their choice, and even when they were, could end up being more fickle than they would have thought themselves. Nonetheless, it didn't affect his opinion of Sugar Apple all that much; heroes, real heroes, did tend to be modest. Rainbow Dash excepted, of course, but she was a fun interviewee, so he didn't hold it against her. The mention of her childhood dream brought a raised brow from Earth over his juice, and he chuckled a bit into his glass. "Is that so? I will say, I sometimes dreamed of being an author, but almost never a journalist. I guess we do ultimately, in some say, get what we want. Or else, never really leave our desires behind, even when we're unconscious of them." The thought was a sobering one, though, as he reflected on his past. Would he ever truly be rid of Heart Stopper's influence? Or had the Kastrotian noblemare made him into a kind of sleeper agent? "I suppose you will have to leave for work soon; my ticket back's still good for a few days, do you mind if we meet up for dinner or something, after you come back?" He wasn't sure what made him ask, besides the fact that he felt the mere hour fate allotted to them for breakfast just wasn't enough to give him, or Sugar, true closure on this.
  5. Pleased at the new plan of snack acquisition, Feng reached out a feathered wing to keep the afternoon sun from getting into Yanhua's eyes. No amount of Watcher indoctrination could make him anything but a caring friend, and his Watcher training, if anything, made him a far more conscientious one than he otherwise might have been. But there could be no denying that it had a tendency to screen out relevant information, while highlighting normally unnoticed details. Such as the intricacies of the Palace postal system. "Ehm, I can't promise that any letter you send won't be read by several eyes before mine. And if you do send a journal of that kind of magic, perhaps it is best that you simply state that it is a gift of stationary for calligraphy practice, if you do not wish to risk confiscation for official use." He shrugged. "Of course, should the Empress decide to requisition it, or expressed a desire to use any such thing, I would be obliged to hoof it over. I hope you do not see this as a reflection of how much I would value such a gift." Discussions of intrigue and skullduggery was suddenly cut short by the frankly unexpected arrival of the Royal Prince, Lian. Feng, as was demanded by protocol, bowed along with Yanhua. He rose quicker, however, and to a level of attention that, for once, reflected the discipline his training had instilled. "I have come to this land on the orders of the Empress, to forge bonds of friendship across the ocean, and win glory among its athletes. I am pleased to report that I shall return to Long Guo with success." He smiled, seeming to relax a little bit. "And, my Prince, I could ask you the same question." His lips twitched his smile into something like a smirk as he continued. "I don't see any of my colleagues with you, which means you left home with either the best, or the worst of them."
  6. As soon as his words had left his mouth, Blueblood knew they would provoke a reaction. This foreknowledge gave him the ability to brace against Bravo's rant, to view the situation calmly and analyze vocal tone and body language. He steepled his hooves underneath his chin, waiting out the storm of words that washed over him. Eventually, the anger subsided, leaving only the crackling flames in the fireplace to warm the den. "You know, I've never been a unicorn supremacist. It's a bit difficult to maintain tribalism in any case, since superpowers are distributed pretty evenly among the types of ponies, and even non-ponies. But they do exist, I've met one, and he was about as convincing as you are." He let his contradiction slide at that, really, it wasn't any of his business if two remnants of a dead nation decided to kill any of hope of their future in mutually-assured destruction. "I don't have faith in much myself, or at least didn't until recently. One can't have a mentor without having faith in that mentor. But that took her appearing right in front of me. I don't know if I could go on like that on nothing but hearsay."
  7. "What can I say? You're a good teacher." Blueblood basked in the praise he got from Ossia; after all, he'd gotten more from her in her short span of mentorship than from any other alicorn during the rest of his life. A situation that a certain swan-like specimen would someday come to rue, if the pink one's cut-off vocabulation was any indication. Not that the Prince was paying it any mind, which was fortunate for Ossia. He hadn't quite reached the point of absolute hatred for dear Auntie Celestia yet... Taking in the advice on not being so obvious, he nodded. "Perhaps, if I fit a stocking set over it... the Glamour Garnet can store an outfit, which sort of... overwrites whatever clothes I'm wearing before I put it on. They come back when I take it off. I've never tried to disguise relics when I've used it like that before, be useful to see if that works. If I can still use Goldgleam while it's disguised..." He blinked, somewhat, on hearing his mentor rattle off the list of nonexistant castles. Apparently, other realities were quite different. "Well, um, hm. All that aside, think I'd like to start with a lab test first." Looking over to the liquor cabinet, he had an idea that he wanted to test out. Setting his not-quite-empty tumbler back into the cabinet, he closed the doors, and latched them shut, leaving the key inside the pair of locked doors. "One obstacle, insurmountable by normal means." Nodding, he closed his eyes, looking inward for his connection to Goldgleam. The relic activated at a mere thought, sending a tingling sensation down his spine into his shod hoof, which he tapped against the door. The lock clicked, and the door swung open. "As if there were any doubt. Still, field testing is a bad time to find out that you can't use something."
  8. Ossia di Nerezza was skilled at stoking all sorts of fires in Blueblood's heart, not just resentment. Nonetheless, the heat now currently steaming through his metaphorical veins could forge most any resolution, and temper petty grievances into a blade of retribution. The Prince knew, on some level, that he was being molded, but it was a molding of scrap into a sword. An improvement, to which he had and continued to agree fully. "Ah, yes. It would be a fine thing, to give her a taste of her own medicine. Not that I have much hope of it curing her, at this point." Upon getting a rundown of what it was exactly that Andromalius was capable of, Blueblood had to admit it was impressive. "A two-speed relic... certainly, a change from the all-or-nothing Glamour Garnet. A glaive to open what charm cannot..." Reaching out with magic, he pulled the box towards him, opening the reliquary to behold an old-style glaive, bronze, age apparent along the base and opening, though the metal close to the top looked newer. "Alteration to fit a pony's hoof." He remarked, reaching out his own, before hesitating. "But that which was altered once-" Without regard for the gravitas of the moment, he sat back suddenly, pulling out a crystal lens from his pocket, through which he inspected Andromalius. After a minute, he re-pocketed the monocle. "Just had to give it a look for tell-tale signs of being booby-trapped. I've been burned before, literally, through impatience." Clearing his throat, though attempts to restore the prior moment's mood were mostly futile, he simply pulled out the relic and slipped it on. Immediately, it began to glow, the bronze color beginning to burnish before their eyes, into a dirty, then clean yellow golden gleam. The Prince felt a tingle at the base of his horn, the familiar feeling of a relic augmenting the magical powers at his command. "It forms to fit." He remarked, gingerly placing his shod hoof on the floor. "I'll need shoes to walk with- no, hang on, it's flat enough in the sole to not throw off my balance." With a final two steps to get the feel of it, he looked in the mirror nearby (there was always a mirror nearby in Blueblood manor). "Not bad... have to fit an ensemble around it, of course."
  9. "Oh, Spike? He went to Canterlot with Twilight, I think. Though, I often see him with Lady Rarity these days." Bluebelle giggled. "In any case, it's probably best we finished our respective days. Goodnight, I will see you when I open up tomorrow morning?"
  10. 'Villain' though he was, Prince Blueblood had never himself felt for anypony the raw hatred that Bravo let spill in the rant. He let the pegasus go on, leaning back in his chair, sipping his beer. He had to take a moment of reflection in the light of all that. Obviously, Bravo was capable of seeing past the indoctrination he grew up with, to acknowledge something of the reality of his situation. But he wasn't exactly political, at least not compared with Blueblood. The Prince had picked up a few things about power dynamics and country management, bereft of any official power though he was. "Hm... it's a little odd to hear you say that. If they are luddites, how is it that they were not blown off the face of Equestria by the technologically superior force?" He rubbed his chin, thinking. His thoughts were not encouraging, and he had some hesitation in voicing them. Indeed, had he not taken in a quantity of strong beer, he probably would not have. But, loosened tongues can betray... "Honestly, even if you could take the docks, I'm not sure how much more time it would buy you. Better repairs, perhaps, but any replacement parts are likely to be in as bad or worse shape. And the military factories in your world probably aren't in a functional state anymore, either. High technology kind of needs medium technology to keep it going. If you don't have that, you're better off in the long term going back to low tech and starting the capital accumulation process all over again, rather than waste wealth in keeping deteriorating technology operating at half-capacity."
  11. Catching Trixie's smirk, Bluebelle threw her a raised eyebrow over her shoulder, but couldn't keep a straight face. "Not like that. And my own preferences lean towards the winged sorts, in any case. No reflection on their or your own loveliness, of course." She threw a wink, seeing only a more innocent sort of naughtiness, rather than anything political. Old habits died hard for her too; she didn't think of commoners in that context. "Well... no, she just asked politely. You know, the way that Princesses have of phrasing requests that are sort of commands without being commands? Besides, I genuinely don't want to break my word to her. I mean, she can still fire me, after all. And I've come to like this job."
  12. Bluebelle brought up a hoof to muffle another laugh from seeing Trixie's effort to suppress her 'performance.' She didn't want to appear discouraging in any way, though it was undoubtedly cute. "I certainly hope so!" She extended her hoof now to shake the other mare's. "I was just planning to wrap one or two things up before heading off to bed; Twilight let's me sleep in her castle while she works in Canterlot. In a guest room, of course, and she won't let me use the throne room. Pity, I always did want one of those. How about you? Headed home for the night?"
  13. ((I already gave him the heads-up)) The Princess's face split into a wide grin. Trixie was not a mare used to kindnesses of such magnitude offered so freely, though few indeed were privileged to receive personal royal attention. Lucky students and teachers at this school, then! "My humor is subtle, but not cruel. Nonetheless, I do hope to see that filled out and on my desk soon." She winked, gathering herself back up. "It was good to meet you, Miss Trixie, finally, in a more personal manner. I hope, myself, to be a friend to all those here. And sometimes, even we teachers could use some lessons on friendship, do we not?" She asked with a giggle.
  14. Bluebelle sometimes had to remind herself that not everypony was royalty, or could expect dear Auntie Celestia or Luna to make time in their calendars for tea. Nonetheless, she couldn't help but feel a teacher's irritation at hearing excuses rather than a resolution for action. But what could be done about the very real difficulties? *Inspiration.* "One moment." Setting her horn aglow, she lifted some official Friendship School stationary and a pen, beginning to write down what looked like a worksheet in longhand. "This is an official Friendship School Assignment, talk over your problems with Twilight Sparkle. I will send word to her ahead of time, I do have a favor to call in, I believe. And I'm certain she won't refuse business like this." Having finished it, she presented it to Trixie with a grin. "You'll find as we work together that I don't do things by halves, nor do I believe in false modesty. If I have a key to the central halls of power, I'm going to use it."
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