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Daring Do and the Forbidden City of Clouds

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Daring Do and the Forbidden City of Clouds
Daring Do and the Forbidden City of Clouds cover
Published October 7, 2014
July 5, 2016 (separate)
Author A. K. Yearling (with G. M. Berrow)
ISBN 978-0-316-38938-9
Previous Daring Do and the Eternal Flower
Next My Little Pony Equestria Girls: Rainbow Rocks - The Mane Event
See also
AllusionsLittle, Brown and CompanyHachette Book Group

Daring Do and the Forbidden City of Clouds by A. K. Yearling is the tenth book in a series of chapter books published by Little, Brown and Company and the third installment in the Daring Do Adventure Collection. In the story, Daring Do seeks out the invisible cloud city of Cirrostrata.

Production

The book's author is credited as "A. K. Yearling", the fictional pseudonym of Daring Do, but is actually written by regular My Little Pony chapter book author G. M. Berrow.[1]

The book is bundled in the Adventure Collection with Daring Do and the Marked Thief of Marapore, Daring Do and the Eternal Flower, a cardboard replica of the book that hid the Ring of Destiny in Daring Don't, a gold-painted miniature Daring Do figurine, and a cardboard treasure chest that houses the entire collection.

Summary

Table of contents
Chapter titlePages
Chapter 1: The Deserted Trail Past Copper Bit Canyon 1-13
Chapter 2: Losing the Wild Bunch Gang 15-19
Chapter 3: Rescuing Ravenhoof 21-39
Chapter 4: Rest and Realization 41-49
Chapter 5: Upward and Onward to Alto Terre 51-57
Chapter 6: Searching for Brumby Cloverpatch 59-68
Chapter 7: An Adventure Pony's Agreement 71-77
Chapter 8: Brumby's Secret Weapon 79-85
Chapter 9: Twenty-Two Revolutions 87-96
Chapter 10: Whispers in the Wind 99-105
Chapter 11: The Magic Monocle of Visibility 107-114
Chapter 12: The Invisible City 117-127
Chapter 13: In Clement's Weather Tent 129-136
Chapter 14: The Guarded Castle and the Stained Glass 139-151
Chapter 15: Do or Dew 153-159
Chapter 16: The Hushed Chamber 161-168
Chapter 17: Written in Stone 171-176
Chapter 18: The Enchanted Artifacts of the Ancients 179-190

Losing the Wild Bunch Gang

The story opens in the San Palomino Desert; Daring Do is chased by Slingshot, North Star, and Spaghetti Slim of the Wild Bunch Gang after she comes into possession of a treasure called the Doomed Diadem of Xilati. Daring attempts to break off her pursuers by explaining if the diadem is separated from its sister artifact—the Tiara of Teotlale—for longer than fourteen moons, a curse will usher in eternal night.

The Wild Bunch Gang doesn't believe the story and demands the treasure, chasing Daring toward a railroad. As a train bound for the Frozen North passes by, Daring manages to outwit the gang by making North Star and Spaghetti Slim run into each other and ensnaring Slingshot in his own lasso. With the stallions defeated, Daring Do flies off.

Rest and Realization

Daring visits Professor A. B. Ravenhoof at his home to deliver the diadem. However, when he answers the door, the professor's bizarre behavior tells her there's an intruder somewhere in the house. Ravenhoof leaves the room to "make tea," and Daring finds the intruder—Dr. Caballeron's henchpony Withers—hiding in a closet. After a brief struggle, she manages to chase him off.

Ravenhoof returns and retrieves the Tiara of Teotlale from a hidden safe, linking it together with the Diadem of Xilati to dispel their curse. He explains to Daring that Withers came demanding information about Cirrostrata, an invisible city in the sky that's home to a mysterious treasure. Legend states that any outsider who ever attempted to enter the city's walls never returned—except one: an adventurer pony named Brumby Cloverpatch. According to Ravenhoof, after Brumby failed to retrieve the fabled "Halo of Cirrostrata", he retired from adventuring for reasons unknown.

Daring is fascinated by the tale and decides to seek out Brumby Cloverpatch and the Halo. Ravenhoof points her in the direction of the mountain town of Alto Terre, where Brumby was last seen.

Searching for Brumby Cloverpatch

Some time later, after flying through the Unicorn Mountain Range, Daring Do finds Alto Terre near one of the mountains' peaks. According to his letters to Ravenhoof, Brumby Cloverpatch chose to live there in isolation after his Cirrostrata experience. Daring enters the town and, despite the pompousness of the townsfolk, eventually finds Brumby working as a clothing store owner under the name "Mr. Brown".

Brumby turns Daring away at first, refusing to answer any questions about Cirrostrata. However, when Daring mentions Ravenhoof, Brumby approaches her later at the Ciderin' Stein inn and tells her to meet him on Mount Equuleus the next morning—as a favor to his old friend Ravenhoof.

Twenty-Two Revolutions

The next morning, Daring meets Brumby at the agreed-upon time and sees his airship the Reflector—a silver balloon attached to a wooden gondola. In exchange for showing her the way to Cirrostrata, Brumby entrusts Daring with a letter to be delivered to a pony named Dew Point. With that, the two take off in the airship.

After several hours of flying, Brumby explains to Daring that he accidentally found Cirrostrata long ago by circling around the mountains twenty-two times. He recreates the process and makes twenty-two complete revolutions with the Reflector. As the ship bursts through the clouds, Daring and Brumby find themselves in a grand sky park filled with statues.

Brumby tells Daring that he can never return to Cirrostrata for fear of "punishment" and that she must continue on alone. After dressing her up to look more like the residential Pegasi, who have long rabbit-like ears and three vertical lines under their left eye, Brumby leaves and reminds her to deliver his letter.

The Invisible City

Daring Do makes her way through the cloud park and passes by several statues of famous Cirrostratan ponies like Duchess Precipita, Sergeant Storm Bringer, and Major Morning Blade. As she hears whispered voices in the wind, Daring believes that she's being followed by Dr. Caballeron. When she reaches a statue of Count Cumulonimbus, she notices the statue wearing a gold-rimmed monocle. Daring reaches for the monocle, and the whispered voices suddenly cry "Intruder!"

Daring fends off a security system of living clouds and escapes with the monocle. When she puts it on, the entire city of Cirrostrata comes into view—the city truly was invisible and could only be seen with the monocle.

Daring makes her way through the elaborate city and passes by the Cirrostratan natives, blending in due to Brumby's disguise. Not knowing her way around and unable to approach anyone for fear of giving herself away as an outsider, she wanders into a park, where she captures the attention of an elderly mare selling apples. The mare introduces herself as Grandmare Clement and invites Daring into a nearby tent, sensing that she is "not a pony of these skies."

In Clement's tent, Clement tells Daring that, during Brumby Cloverpatch's visit to Cirrostrata, he fell in love with the duchess. When Daring says that she learned of the duchess's name through the wind's whispers, Clement proclaims her as the "Keeper of the Halo"—the one destined to protect Cirrostrata. Clement predicts Daring's future using her Future Crystal, and the Crystal delivers two truths and one lie.

"Dew Point will betray somepony. One will be imprisoned. You will protect the Halo."
— Daring Do's predicted future

Inside Castle Cirrostrata

Daring makes her way to Castle Cirrostrata, taking care not to draw any more attention to herself. In front of the castle, she tells the guards that she's a guest of Dew Point, and they warily agree to escort her. On the way to Dew Point's chambers, Daring sees what appears to be the Halo of Cirrostrata depicted in stained glass: a beautiful golden horseshoe.

Daring meets with Dew Point, the duchess's maid, but before she can speak Brumby Cloverpatch's name, Dew Point silences her and suggests they talk somewhere in private. She leads Daring to a soundproof room called the Hushed Chamber where Daring finally delivers Brumby's letter.

Dew Point explains that she, Brumby, and Precipita were once very close and that the only other pony to have ever visited Cirrostrata was the ancient sorcerer and astronomer Comet Tail the Starry-Eyed. According to legend, Comet Tail created the Halo of Cirrostrata to preserve the city's beauty and keep it safe. When Brumby arrived and fell in love with Precipita, Precipita's father Count Cumulonimbus—who forbids outsiders—gave Brumby a choice: stay in Cirrostrata forever, or leave and never return. His decision to leave had broken Precipita's heart.

Upon reading Brumby's letter, Dew Point suddenly locks Daring Do inside the Hushed Chamber. Daring believes that the parts of her predicted future about Dew Point's betrayal and her own imprisonment have come true.

The Artifacts of the Ancients

Daring considers possible means of escape from the locked, soundproof room. However, a short time later, the door reopens, and Daring comes face-to-face with Duchess Precipita herself. With everyone in Cirrostrata now alerted to Daring's presence, Precipita and Dew Point lead her out of the castle through a secret passage. Having learned the truth about Brumby's banishment, Precipita decides that it's time for a change.

She presents to Daring the true treasure of Cirrostrata: the Half-Gilded Horseshoe. She explains that Comet Tail the Starry-Eyed is still alive and has assembled a secret group of ponies dedicated to protecting ancient artifacts from around the world. Precipita herself is a member of this group, and Daring Do is also a potential member.

Daring worries that joining this "Magical Counsel of the Ancients" will mean giving up her life as an adventurer, but Precipita assures her that even greater treasures than before await her if she is inducted. For her test, Daring is tasked with finding the twenty-two Enchanted Artifacts of the Ancients—some of which she has already found, like the Sapphire Stone, the Rings of Scorchero, the Flankara Relics, and the Eternal Flower. Daring accepts the challenge.

Daring Do the Constant

Precipita tells Daring to take the Half-Gilded Horseshoe away from the city and keep it safe. When Daring warns that doing so would dissolve the Halo and make Cirrostrata visible again, Precipita says it's time to share Cirrostrata's beauty with the rest of the world.

As Precipita leaves to travel the world with Brumby Cloverpatch, Daring Do sets out to look for the rest of the Enchanted Artifacts.

Quotes

Slingshot: You're trapped now, Daring Do! Give me the crown or you're riding all the way to the Frozen North with your new friends!
Daring Do: It's a Diadem. And it belongs with its sister...in a museum!
Daring Do: Ravenhoof, you old chump, open the door! I need a shower and something to eat!
Daring Do: I'm going to find him. Then I'm going to get to Cirrostrata and I'm going to retrieve that treasure. Mark my words.
A. B. Ravenhoof: I don't doubt it. But at least have some tea first.
Minty: Afternoon, Mr. Brown!
Brumby Cloverpatch: G'day, Minty!
Brumby Cloverpatch: Meet me on Mount Equuleus tomorrow at nine sharp, and I'll tell you about Cirrostrata. Don't be late, or the deal's off.
Daring Do: Got it. Thanks, Mr. Cloverpatch.
Brumby Cloverpatch: Don't thank me. Only doin' it for Ravenhoof. And, kid—trust me when I say this. You're crazy for tryin' to go up there.
Brumby Cloverpatch: This isn't going to be easy—you know that, right?
Daring Do: I like a challenge.
Brumby Cloverpatch: Let's go, you insane Pegasus.
Grandmare Clement: It's you! The wind will speak to the pony from the peak. She'll be devoid of fright through her circle of light. You're the one. The Keeper of the Halo of Cirrostrata!
Daring Do: So, where is the duchess?
Dew Point: She doesn't see anypony. I am the only one who attends to her.
Daring Do: Ever?
Dew Point: Ever.
Daring Do: Doesn't she get lonely? Does she miss Brumby?
Dew Point: Shhh! Never speak that name here!
Duchess Precipita: Brumby sent you? I've been waiting. For so long.
Duchess Precipita: Comet Tail the Starry-Eyed still lives. He has gathered a secret group of ponies across the ages to join him in his quest to protect the artifacts of our world. There's me—Precipita the Caring. Then Rosewater the Cheerful, Mooncurve the Cunning, and Solar Ray the Candid. And then there will be you—Daring Do the Constant.
Duchess Precipita: A life without adventure can be a very dangerous thing.
Daring Do: You know what? I couldn't agree more.

References

  1. My Little Pony: The Daring Do Adventure Collection Hardcover – October 7, 2014. Amazon.com. Retrieved on 2014 February 3.

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