Chase Your Dreams
"Spike, I'm home!" called Twilight, stamping her numb hooves and boots free of ice. "How's dinner coming along?"
Twilight immediately realised her question was unnecessary as she inhaled the enticing smell of vegetable soup wafting from the kitchen.
"Mmmm, Spike, that smells delicious!"
"Thanks, Twilight. This looks like it'll be one of the best yet."
"That's wonderful, I could use something like that to warm me up again after plodding around out there."
"Did you get the custard for dessert? Because I got a cake in the oven ya know."
"I did. Eventually. They were fresh out at Sugar Cube Corner, apparently Pinkie Pie ate it all before coming out to Applejack's this morning. I looked around the Bridle Market, Reinsburys, Stable Prices, I even asked Doctor Whooves, and no custard to be found!"
"So, uh, how did you get it in the end?"
"I shouted down Rainbow Dash when I saw her overhead to ask if she had any. Luckily she did, and even though she tried to give it to me for free, I insisted I pay her, and here I am," she concluded, holding up the tin.
"At least you got some in the end."
"I suppose, but finding it wasn't very fun, I was cold even with my clothes."
"I thought you might be, so I lit the fire in the living room for you."
"Spike, you are amazing, thank you."
"No problem, you go do whatever it is you do while I get dinner ready."
Twilight sat on a soft rug by the fire, pointing her frigid hooves to the warmth radiating from the hearth. She sighed as the heat seeped into them, returning the feeling.
Once suitably warmed up, the lavender mare set about writing a letter to the Princess. She got herself into an extra comfy position as she levitated a quill, ink and parchment to her side.
She unfurled the paper and stared at it blankly at it for a moment. It stared blankly back, with it being blank and all.
Her mind immediately ground to a halt, trying to think of what to say and how to say it.
"Urgh, I hate when I get like this! Right, okay..."
Dear Princess Celestia,
I'm writing to ask if I can come see you in four days, with it being my birthday, and I would like to ask-
She screwed it up and launched it magically into her bin.
"Pathetic attempt," she muttered under her breath, "I could have written better than that as a filly for pony's sake. Let's try again."
Dear Princess Celestia,
I hope you and Luna are well. Today, we all used one of the lessons we learnt in friendship to use teamwork and communication to help organise my birthday party together, so I didn't get too stressed by overworking myself and going crazy... again.
Anyway, it went really well, and we decided to go to Canterlot for the night. If I may request, would you be so accommodating to allow us to visit the Castle at some point in the day? I would really love to see you and Luna, I haven't seen either of you since that time the firecracker went off in Luna's bedroom, which was a while ago now.
One last thing: I am going to invite both you and Luna to join me in the frivolities of my birthday, I know full well that you don't particularly enjoy such activities, so feel no obligation to agree, but do please ask Luna, it would be nice, to coin the modern phrase to 'hang out' with her.
Your faithful student,
She reread it and nodded in approval.
"That'll do nicely, Spike can send it after dinner."
Right on cue, Spike walked into the living room with a large pot of steaming soup. Twilight eyed it hungrily, licking her lips in anticipation, moving from the rug to her armchair. She used her magic to switch on the radio, and adjusted the knob until it came to rest on Furlong FM, where there was a song playing called Show Me the Moon Tonight.
"Hungry?" asked Spike, seeing the look in her eyes.
"A little," Twilight said, "it looks delicious."
"It tastes delicious too," said Spike teasingly as he ladled out a bowl for Twilight.
Twilight squirmed in her place.
"Can I have some now?"
"Here," he said, handing the bowl, "eat up."
"Oh, I will," she said as she dove into her meal.
The mare thoroughly enjoyed the soup Spike had made; the tasty treat warmed her belly nicely, and the little dragon seemed to enjoy it just as much, though he didn't enjoy the radio debate nearly as much.
"Well Spike," sighed Twilight, after she had finished, "that was lovely."
"Glad you enjoyed it," said Spike, "shall I get the cake?"
"Please, don't forget the custard!" she called as he got up and left.
"I won't! Anyway, what are you actually doing for your birthday?"
"We're going to Canterlot for a night out."
"Oh really? Not your usual cup of tea there, Twi."
"Hehe, I know, I'm usually not big on nights out like that, but I do enjoy it occasionally; a mare has to let her mane down every now and then," she said, remembering what Applejack had said.
"Again, not like you," commented Spike.
"Just hurry up with the cake."
"And could you send this letter to the Princess?" she asked.
"I sure can," said Spike taking the scroll and breathing a lick of flame onto it.
"So tell me, what have you been up to today, Spike?"
Princess Celestia was surrounded by lots and lots of frothy bubbles. The evening bath was extremely relaxing for the alabaster alicorn, who had had a busy day meeting and greeting many important and tedious ponies. She was tired, not from exertion, but from the effort required to maintain an expression of mild interest when in reality, she was bored to tears.
Thank goodness it's over; for today at least.
She exhaled slowly and sank a little more into the hot water, letting her mind and body relax as the welcome heat suffused into her body. Her respite was interrupted however, by a flash of emerald green fire and a scroll dropping out of the air. Celestia managed to catch the letter with her magic before it hit the water.
Aha, a letter from Twilight, I was beginning to wonder if she would send one this week.
The Princess' eyes ran over the parchment and her lips curled into a soft smile.
"That is sweet of her," she said to herself, "wanting to see me and Lunes on her birthday. I must discuss this with her."
The Princess less than graciously hauled herself out of the enamelled bath, wobbling slightly as she got to her hooves to dry off.
Celestia walked up to her sister's bedroom, all manner of cosmetic items floating around her. She walked down the dimly lit corridor to Luna's room, passing the curious artefacts that lay upon shelves all the way down; a fair few of them emitted sporadic puffs of smoke, others lay silently, collecting dust. The alicorn knocked on her sister's large, ebony doors, which were emblazoned with a softly glowing symbol of a crescent Moon.
"Luna?" Celestia called, running a brush through her flowing mane, "Are you in there?"
"Yes, come in Celly!"
The white alicorn opened the doors to Luna's chambers and slipped inside.
"My, my sister," said Luna, looking up from the crossword puzzle she was enjoying and eyeing the objects orbiting Celestia's head, "are thou going somewhere this evening?"
"Oh, this? No, I just felt like I needed to take care of myself more than usual," she replied, unscrewing the bottle of horn polish she had, pouring a little on a cloth and setting to work.
Luna began giggling uncontrollably.
"What's so funny?" asked Celestia curiously, while Luna watched the motion of the cloth on Celestia's horn.
"Oh, nothing," said Luna with a very bad attempt at a straight face.
Then it clicked.
"Oh, grow up Luna," said Celestia playfully.
"Forgive me," she said, giggling slightly, "besides, is there a reason for your visit up here?"
"In fact, yes there is. Twilight has sent me a letter, and asks if we want to go to town with her on her birthday," she said, looking at the letter again.
Luna's ears perked up.
"Oh really? I was meaning to ask her about that myself to tell the truth, it seems that is unnecessary now. Are you going to accompany us Celly?"
"Me? Hmmmmm, as much as I regret to say, I think I shall decline; you know I've never really been one for 'partying.'"
"Indeed I do, several thousand years of imploring haven't worked thus far, I'm not going to try again now."
"Well, that saves us some time. I'll send a letter back to Twilight now and-"
"That won't be necessary, sister," said Luna, somewhat abruptly.
"Yes, I shall inform her."
"As you wish," said the ivory alicorn, slightly confused, but agreeable nonetheless. "Any reason why?"
"I'd like to take a more active role in Twilight's life, is all. And her friends."
"You want to be closer to her you mean?"
Celestia studied her sister's expression closely. She had a certain air about her that she had had before, and she remembered what happened with that...
"Well, it would be lovely for you to get to know her better if you ask me, you are both so similar in many respects."
"What art thou suggesting, sister?"
"Who said I was suggesting? Goodnight, my dear sister."
And with that, Celestia took her leave.
Luna was left alone with her thoughts, wondering if her sister was actually suggesting anything.
"She has a habit of being elusive and vague... Not that we can say much about that."
Luna got up and paced to her large windows, which commanded a spectacular view that stretched far into the distance; she looked into the dark twilight to see the small collection of lights in the distance that was Ponyville.
"All we have to do is wait a few hours before we can speak to Twilight."
The clock struck eleven, and Luna looked up from a book as it chimed rhythmically.
"Let's see if this works," she said quietly.
She set her book at her side and closed her eyes tightly. She had a unique gift, which allowed her to enter the very dreams of ponies, all very normal and ordinary from the alicorn's point of view.
Her eyes glazed over as she descended into a state of near unconsciousness from the physical world, and entered the ethereal world of dreams and nightmares, where everything is never as it seems.
The purple unicorn galloped gaily through a field of lush, tall grass; the wind rushing through the blades, Sun beating down on her neck and back.
"Come on Rainbow Dash!" she called, looking up at the brilliant blue sky to see the feisty pegasus flying overhead. "We need to hurry or we'll be late for J.K Foaling's book signing!"
"I'm flying more slowly than usual, so that I don't leave you behind, Twilight," said Rainbow.
"You know what I mean, I'm just so excited for this!"
Then, suddenly, she was falling, falling far, falling forever.
She landed painlessly on a polished wooden floor.
"Hmmm, how odd," she commented.
She looked up, to see the outline of an alicorn lurking in the shadows.
"You appear to be mistaken Twilight Sparkle," said Princess Luna, emerging from the darkness.
"Oh Luna! I'm so sorry!" said Twilight sincerely. "How are you?"
"We are well, thank you for asking. A more important question is, how are you, my friend? And-" she looked around at the surroundings, "where exactly are we?"
"I'm good too, and I think we are in a library. Not just any library either, it looks like the Royal Library in Canterlot."
"Good gracious, really?" said the alicorn curiously, inspecting the shelves that had seemingly just materialised from the aether.
"Why? Is there something wrong?"
"My dear Twilight, I have no idea. This is your dream after all."
"Oh yes, I can assure you of that," said Luna sitting down on a conveniently placed set of chairs and table with an equally convenient tray of tea resting on it. "Would you care for some tea, Twilight?"
"Oh, yes please," said the unicorn eagerly.
Twilight sat in thought as Luna prepared the tea.
"If this is all a dream," she began, "does that mean I can do anything I like?"
"I suppose you could, though don't get too wild, because I'd know about it."
"Hmmm? What do you mean?"
"This is me, Twilight, I'm the 'real' Luna if you will. I am no figment of your imagination here."
"H-how is that possible?" asked the very confused unicorn.
"You see, we are granted with a unique gift that allows us to enter ponies' dreams. I do not make a habit of it, ponies are entitled to their privacy of course, but every so often when I'm particularly bored or what have you, I'll have a look at what my subjects are dreaming about nowadays. For example, I notice that in these times, dreams seem to be shorter than they used to be, but are far more interesting, with much more variation, imagination... liberation... Oh, listen to me go on, I must be boring you."
"On the contrary, Princess, I'm finding all this fascinating! I never knew you could do this, or that it was even possible! Why have I never heard of this skill of yours?"
"Living on the Moon... was utterly isolating. My very existence fell beyond living memory, let alone my abilities," she said sadly, head drooping.
"Oh Princess, I'm sorry! I-I didn't mean to bring that up!"
"My dear Twilight, I know you would never intentionally remind me of that particular... episode of my life, do not feel bad on my behalf; the important thing is that I am back now, and subsequently, have had the pleasure of meeting many new and wonderful friends, such as yourself."
Twilight blushed slightly at the Luna's praise.
"Thank you, Princess-"
"Please, call me Luna."
"Thank you, Luna."
"'Tis no problem. Besides, I would like to have a word with you."
"Did I do something wrong?" asked Twilight, suddenly fearful.
"What? No! No, no. Though it seems somepony has a guilty conscience," she teased.
Twilight wasn't sure what to say, in case she made herself look more silly in front of the alicorn. She scratched an ear with a hoof, drank a sip of tea and decided to go with:
"What do you want to talk to me about then?"
"The letter you sent to the Castle this evening."
"Oh yes, that letter! Are you coming with us Luna? Because that would be great! My birthday would be the best birthday ever!"
"Yes, I would love to accompany you. Though, I must say this, we are not familiar with modern night life, from what I've heard it is nothing at all what it used to be."
"Don't worry, you'll be fine, just have a few drinks and enjoy yourself."
"If you say so," said Luna, still a little doubtful.
"We'll be visiting the Castle before we leave anyway, so you'll get an idea of what to expect before you even leave; we might have a little to drink before we leave."
"Now, you say a little..."
"And we mean a little, others may get drunk before even leaving, but we have at least a little common sense."
"Ah, that's good to hear."
The library around them flickered into darkness.
"What's going on now?" asked Twilight.
"Your dream is coming to an end it seems, you'll either start another dream, or wake up in a minute. I should go."
"Okie doke, I'll see you soon, have a nice evening!"
"You too, Twilight Sparkle, have a good eve- er, a good night's sleep!"
They waved to one another as they became separated, fading into the night...
Twilight's eyes snapped open. She turned in her bed, twisting her blankets around her body. She yawned, and fell asleep again.