Chapter 2 - Thoughts of a Moon Pony
As everyone looked up at Luna's moon, basking in the glory of it, not one of them could see the solitary purple unicorn who was desperately trying to so something to make herself seen. She'd tried to magic out a sentence on the moon, perhaps to alert somepony down below that she was there. But even as she began to write out the huge words, the moon shifted slightly, and filled in the hole that had just been left by Twilight. Even her attempts at summoning a scroll were useless. She supposed that her supplies were simply too far away. Although, this was not for the lack of trying. After the 5th attempt, Twilight was a disturbing shade of blue, and she was exhausted, all the while thinking about how her friends must hate her now that she had just disappeared without so much as a goodbye.
Those particular ponies in fact, were on there way to Canterlot castle, after receiving a message from Princess Celestia. Thankfully Spike had stayed with the others when Twilight went to talk to the Princesses, so they were able to receive the message without much hassle. As the 5 of them wandered towards the castle, there thoughts turned to the note, and the only sentence that was upon it.
"Twilight Sparkle is in danger, you are needed at the Castle at once, all of you."
This had certainly had an effect on them all, as they scrambled out of the coffee shop that they'd been occupying for the last 3 or 4 hours, and as they sprinted towards the castle, they started to wonder what had got her friend into so much danger that not even the Princess, the most powerful pony in Equestria, could save her. They all gave up after a few minutes, the horrors were just too intense for them to imagine.
As they reached the gate to the castle, the guards opened the gate when the ponies got within a few steps, then closed it behind them, one of them helpfully telling Applejack the way to where the Princess was waiting for them. They all ran off to where the guard had described, crashing through the correct door after another half a minute, they looked around in panic, expecting to see Twilight, almost dead on a hospital bed. And because that was what they wanted.
Celestia made it so.
The image of their friend was so realistic, that even Applejack, the hardest pony to pull a prank on, couldn't see that this was only an illusion. The Twilight in the bed was not so much lavender any more, as grey. Her friends all recoiled at the sight, they couldn't even bear to look at her. Even Pinkie was immobile, with her mouth open, and her hair twisting madly before falling flat against her head. The only pony not to give any noticeable reaction was Rainbow Dash, but then, Celestia had thought that that would happen. She was the spirit of Loyalty after all, and it made everything so predictable, so easy.
Rainbow Dash approached the side of the bed, and whispered quietly.
Celestia could see that everything could work out oh so well if she pulled the strings at exactly the right time. So saying, there was a grunt from the bed-ridden unicorn as she partially opened her shadowed eyes. This did cause Rainbow Dash to squeak in surprise, but she hid that well. The others, well. Put it this way, how would you react, if your friends eyes had gone from there usual purple shade, to completely black. She didn't even seem to see Rainbow Dash, who was stood literally right in front of her eyes. The rest of the elements took one look at Twilight, then the combination of weirdness, shock, and exhaustion caused Rarity and Fluttershy to faint, Applejack to stick her head out of the window and begin heaving, and Pinkie to close her jaw, lie down and cry quietly.
They all knew what they saw, even Rainbow, who wasn't exactly the medical expert of the 5 saw the signs.
Lack of a sense.
All of the symptoms matched, just as planned. And the ponies all knew what it meant. They called it the Lunar Bug. It was what happened when an asteroid came down from the sky, and a pony went and had a look around it.
Hell, Twilight had even told them about the lunar bug earlier today, after all, she did study the stars like a lunatic, and had a book on all of the known medical diseases that came from space. Every single pony in that room remembered her words from earlier:
"The Lunar Bug is fascinating. It only needs to touch the animal to spread its' poison. Turning it's victim completely grey, and has even been known in some cases to completely remove one of the 5 sensory functions. If I ever met one of these, I'd be doomed from the off, there's absolutely no cure whatsoever."
Rainbow could feel the tears forming on her stricken face as she remembered the Unicorns next words, after being asked by Fluttershy how long it would take until the poor victim was dead.
By this time, Applejack was looking slightly less green but was still staying away from the sightless ghost of Twilight. Celestia decided that it was time to take control of the situation. She walked in through the doors and took in the sight before her. Both Fluttershy and Rarity were dead to the world, while Pinkie was now sat with her back to the room, still crying. Applejack was still a sickly shade of green, and Rainbow was now hugging her best friend and sobbing uncontrollably. With a small exertion of her will, Celestia gave Twilights friends their consciousness back. Fluttershy and Rarity both getting up from the floor, and Pinkies hair now looking like there were a few fans in there blowing the party ponies hair around her head. Applejack and Rainbow she left however. She needed to make sure that they all saw what happened next.She began.
"My Little Ponies. I'm glad you've come. I know what you're thinking. Not even I can get rid of this horrible disease, it has no cure whatsoever, magical or physical. Our only hope are the Elements of Harmony to save her. They're right over he--"
But they never heard where the elements were, because Rainbow was now screaming at Twilight, screaming her name. Willing for her to wake up, to do something, anything. Celestia granted that. The last death rattle shaking through her ex-students' body. Now the remainder of the Mane 6 were gathered around Twilights death bed, all crying and calling her name, trying to rouse the dead pony to no avail. Rainbow was cradling the dead Ponies head in her forelegs. The princess allowed herself a small smile at that, it had been an act of genius to borrow a body from the morgue, and to then cast a simple illusion spell over it, to make it appear to look like Twilight, and was still able to be held with no adverse affects.
The Princess started to listen to what the Ponies were actually saying now.
Pinkie was sobbing. "B - but you and I were going to make cupcakes tomorrow."
Fluttershy wasn't saying anything, and the grieving mare was only supported by Rarity, who had allowed her mane to be ruined by the tears, even as she stood dumbstruck by this turn of events.
Applejack spoke quietly to Twilight. "Twi... I didn't mean it. when I told you that you were a bookworm. I'm sorry Twi."
And finally Rainbow Dash. who seemed to have run out of tears, spoke softly. "I was going to tell you Twilight, tomorrow at AJ's party... I was going to tell you that I loved you."
The fight seemed to go out of the cyan pegasus when she finally admitted it. Something in the pegasus broke, and she simply sat back down, and wept.
Celestia smiled at her ingenuity. Now no-one would be suspicious of her student's disappearance. After all, her 5 best friends in the whole world had just seen her die.