|I Shall Crush Them Beneath an Iron Hoof
Author: Chaltab PM
There is trouble in Jump City when the Crimson Mane Revolutionary Guard, led my the mysterious Shadow Commandant, sends a troupe of Pony terrorists to attack the Titans. Now the Titans and the Ponyville gang have only days stop their dastardly plot.Rated: Fiction T - English - & Beast Boy - Chapters: 5 - Words: 23,622 - Reviews: 21 - Favs: 10 - Follows: 5 - Updated: 04-26-11 - Published: 03-31-11 - Status: Complete - id: 6859170
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
Author's Note: Um, yeah, probably ought to say a few words. The Teen Titans of this story are based on the 2003 cartoon series, but specifically come from a fanfic unvierse that expands and builds upon that series significantly. Hence you'll see a few Titans that aren't familiar: Savior, Gauntlet, Morgue, Scalpel. Terra is also back on the team. Long story, that.
If you'd like to know more about these jerks, then head on over to the fics of Legend Maker, BobCat, and Jedi-And.
I Shall Crush Them Beneath an Iron Hoof
Beast Boy was not having a good day. He had awoke at 7AM to the sound of Terra drying her hair, for the earth-mover had a job interview at Starbucks and did not wish to be late. Try as he might, he could not get back to sleep and eventually crawled into the kitchen for a cup of tea and found that the only caffeinated beverage in the refrigerator was a pot of bacon tea that Rob had brewed the day before. He had poured himself a cup and heated it in the microwave, using multiple filters to strain out all of the bacon before taking a skip of what amounted to tepid water with caffeine and pork fat suspended in it.
When he had gone to check his email, his first message was from Flamebird sending pictures of herself in a bikini, which Beast Boy would have found appealing if he had not already been dating a slightly-less-hot blonde. But that was nothing next to the second email, his SEGA newsletter in which they had announced the cancellation of Mega Monkey XVIII for quality control reasons. To rub salt into that wound, the email announced the next Sonic game, Revenge of the Werehog.
And then despite a volley of protestations, Starfire had had the nerve to make him walk Silkie. At the park, in front of people. Beast Boy was normally a people person, but not when he'd missed out on five hours of sleep. He had grumbled but eventually complied; Cyborg wouldn't let him take an image fakeifier ring because it wasn't a mission.
"Terra ain't using one," Cyborg said. "Why should you get to be any different?"
"Terra can disguise herself by throwing on a wig and eye-shadow. If you haven't noticed, I'm green."
"Holy crap, you're green?" Cyborg exclaimed. His organic eye shot wide in alarm. "I guess that means Star Bolts aren't purple either."
"Ha, ha, Vic," Beast Boy had muttered. "You're not the one constantly mobbed by teenage girls who want you to sign autographs on their underwear." Inwardly he had laughed at that; at one time he would have killed to have teenage girls fawn over him, but now that he was out of his teens, it just seemed like he was taking advantage of them. Also, Terra would be pissed if he let it go to his head.
"Yeah, because it's so much more fun to hook up with girls via USB port," Cyborg had blurted, tapping the back of his head.
Beast Boy did not have a response to that.
So here he was, in Haney Park, walking a mutant silk worm. It was a hot April afternoon and dozens of civilians darted about, some of them taking the opportunity to snap photos of the Teen Titan and his bizarre pet. At the end of the inedible leash, Silkie gurgled happily and munched on some grass. Beast Boy didn't think Silkie could actually digest grass, but at this point he was just trying to be as unobtrusive as possible.
And that was when the adorable Pony nationalists attacked.
Five Minutes Later
"We're pinned down!" Beast Boy called into his communicator. Terra was beside him, still in her Starbucks uniform, both of them hunkered down behind an overturned van. "They're some sort of strange horse-like creatures and they're everywhere!"
Robin growled from the other end of the line. "They must be those Equestrian Nationalists that Batman's been tracking. I had no idea they'd hit Jump City."
"Equestrian Nationalists?" Beast Boy blurted. "What the hell, man, you expected this?"
"Just stand your ground. The Titans are on their way."
No sooner had Robin got it out of his mouth, a dark void spread across the ground and three more Titans raised out of it: Starfire, Savior, and Raven.
"Will someone tell me what's going on?" Beast Boy said.
"You are remarkably uninformed about your own planet's international politics," Starfire said.
Raven stepped forward. "We can explain the situation later." She raised her hands and a dozen nearby lamp posts were coated in black energy. They ripped out of the ground and hurled off into the distance.
A female voice shouted the order to fall back; then came the sound of galloping hooves.
"Titans, pursue them," Savior barked.
Beast Boy, still completely confused, decided it would be best to stop the equine terrorist regardless of whether he comprehended the situation.
He transformed into a massive green bull and charged out from behind the overturned van. Terra threw off her black wig and took off the hair net beneath, following him out on a platform of rock. In the distance, he heard starbolts flare, then impact against the distinct sound of a telekinetic barrier.
In front of him, though, only two ponies were visible: a gray one with orange body armor and a blue one with green armor. Both of them had enormous glowing swords in their mouths.
"Incoming Titan!" the gray one called. "Fall back."
"By the Sun, he's fast!" the other one said. Beast Boy slammed his horned head into the nearest pony and she went careening backwards into a car, tumbling over it. She recovered quickly and charged at Beast Boy, brandishing her sword, swinging it with her bulging neck muscles. Beast Boy pulled away, but he wasn't fast enough; the blade sliced a narrow gash in his bull chest.
Beast Boy shifted into a gorilla and tried to pound the strange horse creature, but she rolled out of the way and jabbed with her blade, catching the heel of Beast Boy's foot. He turned and walloped her. The pony's armor seemed to absorb most of the impact, but the blow still sent her sailing into the Starbucks across the street.
Terra swooped by on her rock platform.
"You ass!" she said. "Now I'm going to be off work while they make repairs."
Beast Boy thought it might be a good thing; he'd get to sleep in more at least.
Rocks flew at her command and slammed into the blue Pony, who absorbed the blows like she was some sort of little equine barbarian and returned fire with a bolt of lightning from her sword. The bolt nearly hit Terra in the shoulder.
The geokinetic launched her rock platform forward and leapt off, falling to the ground but using a pillar of soft earth from beneath the street to cushion her fall.
Her target Pony terrorist leapt into the air and twisted, kicking the rock platform with her hind legs. It shattered into a dozen pieces.
"Holy crap, these guys are strong," Terra said, landing by Beast Boy.
"Well of course," came the voice of one of the Ponies, the gray one. She climbed out of the damaged coffee shop sporting a gash below her massive left eye, yet otherwise looking none the worse for the wear. "We're Earth Ponies, you jerks. We're the strongest Ponies alive."
"Why can they talk?" Beast Boy gulped. "Why is the world constantly throwing things at me that make no sense?"
"Superheroes, Logan," Terra said. She smiled and weakly punched him in the shoulder. "It's all part of the job."
Meanwhile, Back at the Park
"You are quite adorable," Starfire was saying. "Quite adorable indeed. Yet if you do not cease with your hostilities I will have to subdue you with force."
"Don't condescend to me, you alien bitch!" The nearest Pony said. This one was different than the ones Beast Boy and Terra had pursued. It had black armor instead of the brightly colored plates of the others, and on its head there grew a single eight-inch horn that crackled with magical energy—it was some sort of Unicorn, a mythological Earth species that Starfire had been quite fond of. Until today, at least.
She hurled a flurry of starbolts, the green blasts of energy lancing out and curving around, trying to get past the Pony's defenses. Yet every time, that horn of hers glowed with another burst of magical energy and the starbolts impacted against an invisible barrier, some sort of telekinetic force field.
"Focus Star!" Savior called. He was wrestling, Shimmer strands galore, with some sort of Manticore creature that the nearest Unicorn had summoned. His face showed ever little nick the creature's claws made against the hypersensitive Shimmer construct, but it was a pain that Noel had long sense learned to tolerate—in small enough doses—to get the job done.
"I am focused," the alien called back, perhaps more harshly then she had intended. "These things are surprisingly powerful."
"You're holding back because they're cute," Savior growled. "Forget the cuteness. They're terrorists. Take them down."
"There is no perhaps! Think of them as the Zap Pack."
"The Zap Pack chose to do the right thing in the en—"
"ARGH!" Savior's scream of anguish cut her off as the Manticore's tail spike sliced through multiple strands of Shimmer at once, sending white-hot bursts of pain into Savior's central nervous system. Starfire disengaged from her Unicorn foe and immediately fell on the Manticore with enough force to crack Fort Knox. The creature roared as she struck it, the ground around them rumbling from the impact. The Manticore collapsed, then dissolved into golden dust.
Inside her head, Starfire felt Raven's psychic presence, suddenly with her.
"Where are you, Raven?" Starfire collected the wounded Savior and tossed him over her shoulder. A bolt of energy from the closest Unicorn lanced out, dancing through the air like a ballerina of doom; Starfire rocketed skyward, Savior in hand, to dodge it.
Raven's voice echoed in her mind. "Everything about these Equestrians is steeped in magic. I'm trying to get a bearing on the nature of their powers so I can create a counter spell. Hold on a bit longer and keep Noel safe."
Another beam from the Unicorn barely missed her, and Starfire decided it would be best to hide Savior behind the Old Spice Man billboard above Jump Plaza before she did any continued fighting.
That Very Moment above Leapville
"They're Pegasuses," Cyborg said, reading the scans that the new T-Defender was making as it blazed through the sky after the dozen flying Ponies. "They all got wings."
"I believe the correct plural is Pegasi," Gauntlet said. The youngest Titan, Gauntlet often found himself the voice of reason among the team—for a certain value of reason. It wasn't a value of reason most people shared, though. So perhaps it wasn't really reason at all, more like madness.
"Enough with the internal monologue already," Gauntlet blurted. "We've got Ponies to take down."
Robin's face appeared on the holographic screen in front of them—one of the nifty new features of the T-Defender. "We're going to break apart and pursue the ponies individually. Keep your eyes peeled."
"Sir, yes , sir," Gauntlet chimed in.
"And for the love of God, keep your targeting computer on," Cyborg said. "You ain't a Jedi and you can't use the Force."
"Oh, try the Jedi mind trick ONE TIME and—"
But Robin cut him off. "Enough. We're breaking apart… now."
The rear of the T-Defender separated off from the cockpits and transformed into its stationary mode; the five cockpit units belonging to the five airborne Titans: Robin, Gauntlet, Cyborg, Morgue, and Scalpel. Gauntlet deployed the wings of his pod and banked towards the south, pursuing a pair of Pegasi, one green and one purple. He throttled forward and activated the goo-balls; now he had to wait for a clear shot.
His targeting computer beeped and he squeezed the trigger, goo-balls launching out and coating the nearest Pony in a green slime that fudged up his wings and sent him careening towards the city below. The Pony crashed through the Old Spice Man billboard, directly, to Gauntlet's amusement, through the sentence 'Now I'm On a Horse'.
The other Pegasus whirled around in mid air and changed directions, charging at him with such incredible speed that the vacuum of his movements sent Gauntlet's pod whirling through the sky. He slammed his fist into the stabilizer controls and tried to bring the pod out of a barrel roll, banking hard and coming back around.
Gauntlet could see the Pony's mouth moving through his cockpit shield; he flicked on his radio and set it to scan the target for any outgoing radio signals.
"If that Pony is communicating something—" he thought.
"No EM Spectrum radiation detected. Target is emitting in several wavelengths of mystical radiation."
"The hell, you have sensors for that?"
"Affirmative." The Pony charged at Rob again, and he banked hard so that the Pony missed him and the wind scraped the bottom of the pod without sending him spinning.
"Then scan for it," he told the computer.
"Scanning. The target is emitting some sort of magical field from its wings in order to fly. There is also a weaker single transmitting an encrypted psychic broadcast."
"Can you decrypt it?" Rob swooped down, launching a dozen canisters into the air, all of which contained modified shrimp nets that he hoped would tangle up the Pony's wings and bring him down. But the Pegasus nimbly dodged in between all but the last of them, which he ploughed through as if it were made of tissue.
So much for Batman's ingenuity.
"Decrypted." The screen on the computer was displaing an isolated signal. Gauntlet reached down and tapped a panel on the screen labeled play. Immediately the voice of the Pony came through the cockpit speakers.
"I repeat, we're under heavy fire. The Titans have engaged us."
"What do you mean we need to fall back?" The Pony demanded. "We've got these so-called heroes on the ropes."
"Ma'am, yes ma'am. We're heading back to the park. What about everypony we've lost? I understand. Ma'am. Thunder Spark out."
Gauntlet whirled his ship around, not following the Pony directly but heading towards Haney Park. If they were heading back to where the attack originated, he'd beat them there and maybe get to the bottom of this insanity.
"Computer, send the signal to Robin and see what he thinks of it," Gauntlet said, before gunning the accelerator.
"What the heck is that thing?" Beast Boy said, coming to a dead stop. In front of him, in the dead center of the park, a huge drill bit protruded from the ground; below the drill was a machine that looked, inexplicably, like a massive steel barn, silver and white. On the front doors two horses' heads with flaming manes were rendered in crimson, facing each other.
Terra launched a volley of rocks at them, but the nearest Unicorn raised her head and sent the rocks sailing back their way with grunt of effort. More Ponies were swooping down, gathering at the barn doors, which swung open and started letting the Ponies in. Beast Boy tried to shift into a dilophosaurus and spit acid at them, but was hit mid-transformation by a blast of lightning. One of the non-winged, non-horned terrorists, the ones that called themselves Earth Ponies, had sent a blast of fire from its magic sword. Two dozen Ponies had gathered in front of the barn, many of them storming in, particularly the injured; others were covering them with blasts of telekinesis and magic energy.
Robin's voice crackled from his communicator. "They're retreating. Try and keep them from getting away."
Out of the corner of his eye, Beast Boy saw a shadow move along the ground; Raven emerged from it, her blue cloak billowing about her.
"I've got it covered, Robin," she said. "Azarath Metrion Zinthos."
Half a dozen twisting beams of black and white energy erupted from her hands, crawling through the air and slamming into the nearest Ponies. They cried out and fell to the ground; but the last of the injured slipped into the barn doors at the same moment; the doors slammed shut, leaving the defeated Ponies behind; immediately the barn-thing receded into the ground, a drill, not the one on top but another one, below the ground, whirring.
Terra grabbed her communicator from her pocket.
"It's getting away, should we go after it?"
"Cyborg," Robin responded. "Pick up Terra and the two of you pursue. Try and get a trajectory or tag it with a tracking device, but do not engage. We need to round up the ones they left behind. And where the hell is Savior?"
Later, On The Roof Of Justice
Gauntlet blinked. "Does it count as stealing a Teen Titans Abridged joke if the writer of this story is the co-creator of Teen Titans Abridged?"
Raven gave him a warning look and instead turned to regard their prisoners All of the defeated ponies—eight in all—had been rounded up after the battle, fettered with some sort of horse-shoe version of a handcuff that Cyborg had fabricated down in the tech lab. The ones Raven had hit were still unconscious; the Unicorn taken down by Starfire sat silently brooding, and the Pegasus shot down by Gauntlet was trying to fight the restraints on its legs and wings, but to no avail.
"I reckon you'd better let me out of here before reinforcements show up," the Pegasus said.
Savior glared at him. "I have a cracked rib thanks to you. It would behoove you not to piss me off."
"Savior," said Terra, her face deadpan. "Did you really go there?"
Savior blinked. "Oh god, I did, didn't I?"
"Whatever!" the Pony snarled. "It weren't my fault I landed on you. Thank your blond buddy over there for shootin' me down."
The door hissed open and Starfire and Cyborg walked out onto the roof, approaching the prisoners cautiously. Cyborg looked at the Pegasus and shook his head.
"I don't think you're reinforcements are coming. I just lost the homing signal I put on your drill-barn thingy, but it was halfway across the Atlantic by then. Your allies have abandoned you."
"So you'd better start talking," Savior said. "What's your angle?"
"My name is Sergeant Lightning Smith, Crimson Mane Revolutionary Guard. My serial number is A135." The Pony bristled. "And that's all you're getting."
Beast Boy, who had been curled up in fetal position in the corner, looked up. "Crimson Mane what now?"
"They're a splinter group of Equestrian Nationalists," Cyborg said. "They want to overthrow the monarch of Equestria, supposedly to establish a democracy. But their tactics are little better than your common terrorist organization."
"They're PONIES!" Beast Boy shouted. "They're adorable quadrupedal equidae. Why are they even able to talk? How can they have a government, let alone nationalists? None of this makes any sense."
"It would if you paid attention to the news," Savior said. "Equestria is a new country formed on the northwestern tip of Africa. These Pony creatures migrated to our plane from an other-dimensional realm of magic that scientists have dubbed the PonyWilde."
Lightning nodded. "And we're ruled with an iron hoof with a self-appointed Sky Queen called Celestia. She thinks she can lord over everypony because the sun shines out her hind quarters."
"The most important point, though," Savior said. "Is to figure out why they attacked Jump City. So far the Crimson Manes haven't been hitting targets outside Equestria."
"I don't know, I was just followin' orders."
Starfire looked at the Pony and shook her head. "It is a shame that something so cute is prone to repeating the same mistakes that humanoid races have been making for centuries." She looked over at Savior. "Robin has told me that he wishes to send an away team to the Equestria to get to the proverbial bottom of this attack."
Raven frowned. "I'm not sure that's a great idea. We had trouble on the field against them, and that's here on our home turf. I may have figured out a magical workabout to their powers, but it's not something I can use repeatedly. It requires me to channel the animosity of everyone in the surrounding area into my spell."
"But your dad's dead at the moment," said Terra. "What does it matter if you absorb some bad vibes."
"I'm sorry Terra," Raven answered. "I can't continuously open myself to that sort of darkness. I still bear the scars from the last time we had to—"
"Fine, I'm convinced." She crossed her arms. "But there's still the question of how to stop these things."
Raven nodded. "Unfortunately, they seem to be beings unusually inclined to goodness, deriving power from it. It will be difficult to fight them. For these… creatures, these Ponies… it's as if friendship is magic."