Just as planned.
These words struck the lavender unicorn hard. They echoed in her head as she looked at Princess Celestia, dumbfounded and fearful. Her eyes were wide, her mouth wide open in surprise.
“But... But...” she could barely manage to speak, still in shock at the recent twist. She glanced back and forth between Princess Celestia and Luna, frantically. “Princess Luna... we thought we could trust you!”
Princess Luna simply smirked, silently mocking Twilight Sparkle. Twilight then looked back over at Princess Celestia.
“And Celestia. You said she wasn’t involved with this!” yelled Twilight.
Princess Celestia’s horn lit up, creating an aura around Twilight, which forced Luna’s aura away. The unicorn was pulled by Celestia’s magic through the air, stopping her inches away from Celestia’s face.
“I lied.” she said with a smile.
Twilight Sparkle simply could not believe it. She had been betrayed by not one, but both Princesses. Her eyes shut as she gritted her teeth, trying to hold back her anger to remain calm.
“I swear it, Princesses. You won’t get away with this!” shouted Twilight. Princess Luna and Celestia looked at each other before breaking out into laughter.
“Face it, Twilight Sparkle. We have basically already won. You have lost!” asserted Princess Luna. Twilight shot Luna a hard glare.
“Now...” Celestia began, turning using her telekinesis to force Twilight to turn around in mid air, forcing her eyes open. She was forced to look at the sealed door where her friends were trapped. “Let us see how your friends are doing.”
At regular intervals, a thud sounded from the other side. “Nothin’s workin’!” shouted a certain southern accent. Princess Luna’s horn created an eerie light that shined on door and the surrounding wall. It acted as sort of an X-ray, allowing Twilight and the Princesses to see into the room where her friends were.
Applejack could be seen attempting to kick the door down, but to no avail. It was too strong. Rainbow Dash was hovering around the room to look for any other viable escape options. Spike and Rarity were attempting to comfort a frightened Fluttershy, and Pinkie Pie was being Pinkie Pie.
Rainbow Dash looked up to see numerous holes in the ceiling. They were close together and littered the ceiling. “Hey! What’s with these holes?” asked Rainbow Dash’s muffled voice. Although Twilight could see through the walls due to Luna’s magic, they were still there, causing sounds to remain muffled.
Twilight suddenly gasped as her eyes widened with fear. Spikes suddenly shot out, protruding from the holes in the ceiling. With that, the ceiling began to descend.
Twilight began to panic, but was forced to watch. “Isn’t it lovely?” asked Princess Celestia.
“Haha! We rigged that chamber to act as death trap,” said Princess Luna, excited.
Spike and the ponies trapped in the small chamber screamed in unison as they watched the ceiling creep ever so closer to the ground. Pinkie Pie and Rarity panicked while Fluttershy broke down into tears. Applejack was frantically trying to kick the door down as Rainbow Dash placed her hooves on the ceiling between spikes, leaning her head back so she wouldn’t be impaled. The cyan pegasus was attempting to hold back the ceiling, but she couldn't slow it down.
Princess Celestia brought her mouth to Twilight’s ear. “See that, my little pony?” she said with a disturbingly calm and warm voice. “You and your friends have lost. Now watch them perish.”
She couldn’t move. Twilight Sparkle’s visage was frozen with despair and fear. Tears began to roll down her cheeks as she watched her friends vain attempts to escape their death trap.
Only one word could escape her lips. “No...”
“Oh, I think yes,” taunted Princess Celestia, with Princess Luna snickering at her sister's little joke.
Twilight couldn’t take it anymore. The spiked ceiling was more than halfway to the ground. Spike and the Mane 5 looked on in fear at the descending death trap.
“No!” yelled Twilight, trying to shake free from Celestia’s magic hold. She gritted her teeth rather violently.
“Do not bother, Twilight Sparkle. My magic field is also actively suppressing yours,” Celestia gloated, her eyes narrowing. She sounded very serious and cold.
“NOOO!!!” screamed the lavender unicorn. She began struggling harder, thrashing around violently, wanting to save her friends. The spiked ceiling was almost upon them.
Memories flashed through her head like a strobe light. Twilight recalled the best times she had with her best, closest friends. She gritted her teeth and closed her eyes as tears rolled down her cheeks like rivers.
The muffled screams of Spike and the Mane 5 sounded suddenly, as the group could do nothing but watch as the death trap crept dangerously close to them.
Then it happened. Twilight Sparkle let out a final skyward scream as an explosion of purple magic erupted from her entire body. Celestia’s aura was blown away, with Luna’s X-Ray-esque spell being interrupted. Their eyes were wide with shock as they stumbled backwards from the force of explosive aura that encased Twilight.
Magic continued erupting from Twilight’s whole body, creating an strong, outward gust of wind at the same time. Inside the fierce and bright aura, Twilight’s eyes were glowing as her mouth hung open, as if she were in a trance.
Quickly recovering, the princesses attempted to use their power to subdue the unicorn, launching a beam of magic from their horns, but to no avail. Bolts of purple magic struck back against the regal sisters, stunning them on contact. Neither Celestia nor Luna were prepared for this sudden powerful outburst of power.
Suddenly, the mass of purple magic containing Twilight charged at the doorway, leaving a purple trail behind it in the air. Any dust on the floor was kicked up as her brilliant form zoomed a mere couple feet above.
The furious mass of magic easily smashed through the door. The ceiling was already lowered to normal pony’s head level, with Spike and Mane 5 hugging the ground tightly for dear life. Twilight’s magic-amped form cleaved through the thick low ceiling without much resistance, stopping in the dead center of the room. The spiked ceiling was forced to a stop before it began to recede upwards from the force of Twilight’s erupting magic.
With that, a final burst of light engulfed everypony in the small chamber. The spiked ceiling was forced back into its default position, the mechanism to lower it now broken.
Princess Luna and Celestia regained themselves, dashing up to the broken down door way. Their eyes were frantically scanning the room.
They were gone.
Princess Celestia gritted her teeth, furious at the outcome of things. Princess Luna, on the other hoof, was even more visibly frustrated as she stomped her hooves on the floor several times, breaking the tiles her hooves connected with into pieces.
“Argh! Twilight Sparkle got away! Where did she get all that power!?” shouted Luna in her anger. She was breathing heavily, her eyes narrowed with anger.
“I do not know, sister. But I do know that we will have to send more troops to look for her!” asserted Princess Celestia. Her eyes narrowed further.
“Twilight Sparkle will not escape her fate,” she said, slowly inhaling. A moment passed before the while alicorn exhaled calmly.
“I will make sure of that.”
Spike grunted as his eyes slowly crept open. Having been laying on his back, he sat up and shook his head to regain himself properly. He glanced up to see the canopy of a forest looming above him. Moments later, his gaze shifted around him, spotting a number of familiar mares. The baby dragon promptly raised himself to his feet. Mere seconds passed before the other mares began to awaken, with one exception.
Twilight Sparkle remained unconscious, while the other mares regained their thoughts and senses.
“What in tarnation? Where are we?” asked Applejack, glancing around at her new surroundings. She was still a bit light headed, attempting to shake it off.
“It looks like we’re in the Everfree Forest,” replied Spike as he walked over to Twilight.
The Mane 5 gathered around with Spike, observing the unconscious lavender unicorn. “Hey... Twilight?” said Applejack, giving her body a nudge with one of her hooves.
Pinkie Pie placed her hooves one Twilight’s shoulders and began to shake her. “Wakey wakey eggs and bakey!” she said, raising her voice. Applejack put a hoof on Pinkie’s shoulder moments later. Her face was solemn.
“No more, Pinkie Pie. It don’t look like she’s gonna wake up...” the orange earth pony said. Her voice was heavy with concern.
Fluttershy put an ear up to Twilight’s chest. She sighed in relief once she heard the beating of the lavender unicorn’s heart. Fluttershy raised her head back and looked around at her friends. “Um, well, her heart is still beating, at least,” she claimed, her voice still timid and soft.
Everypony unanimously let out a sigh of relief. At least Twilight Sparkle was still alive. However, concern still lingered in their thoughts, as she wasn’t waking up. Even the happy-go-lucky Pinkie Pie couldn’t bring herself to smile and laugh at this point. Her normally fluffy mane promptly deflated.
“Well, what do we do now!?” asked Rainbow Dash, firmly. “We’re like, wanted fugitives now!” She threw her hooves into the air before crossing them, as the sentence escaped her mouth, clearly frustrated by the recent turn of events.
“Ah don’t know, sugarcube,” Applejack replied, her heart heavy.
“Chances are, we will have all of Equestria against us. No doubt the princesses will work on smearing our image and hunting us down,” Rarity speculated. Indeed, it would be the sort of thing the princesses would do. The solemn look in everypony’s eyes indicated no objections to her assertion.
The group could see gaps in the canopy, seeing a cloudy sky. Judging by the lighting, evening was upon them. The sound of thunder boomed high above them, to which drops of water began to fall from the clouds. The canopy of the Everfree Forest kept most of the rain at bay, save for the gaps. Rain poured through unimpeded in those spots.
“Come on, guys,” said Spike, with a calm but serious tone. “We should look for Zecora. Maybe she has something that can help Twilight.” The group nodded in agreement. Fortunately, they weren’t terribly far from Zecora’s hut.
Applejack lowered her head by Twilight’s unconscious body, nudging her up and letting her slide down onto her back. “Well, ah reckon we better get goin’,” suggested the orange earth pony.
With that, Spike and the Mane 5, with Applejack carrying Twilight, began to make their way to Zecora’s hut in hopes that she can help Twilight awaken.
Captain Strong Wing and his troops awoke in the Ponyville Library, dazed from Princess Luna’s sleep spell. A glance outside showed that it was raining, and that evening had come.
The captain grunted a little, still having not fully recovered from some of the blows Rainbow Dash had given him. He shook his head a few times. “Hmph. Just what in Equestria is Princess Luna thinking?” he said out loud. The troops weren’t really listening as they were just regaining their senses.
The Captain waited a few moments for his troops to be ready. Once they were, he would give instructions.
“Alright. There does not appear to be much we can do for now. We will return to base for now,” he ordered. The Captain made his way for the still broken down doorway before stopping again. He turned to face his troops. “Ah, and be sure to retrieve White Nimbus’ and Yellow Bolt’s corpses.”
The guards saluted and shouted “Yes sir!” before rushing over to retrieve the corpses from upstairs. The Captain hastily exited the Ponyville Library, eager to return to base. He knew his troops knew how to find their way back without him. Fortunately for him, it didn’t hurt very much to fly despite some of the hard hits he took from Rainbow Dash.
Captain Strong Wing had returned to the make shift base near the outskirts of Ponyville after a several minute flight. Normally he could have gotten there faster, however he was cautious to strain himself after that rough encounter with the cyan pegasus. The troops that accompanied him had yet to return.
Scarlet, the communications officer greeted. “Welcome back Captain, sir!” she said, giving him a firm salute.
“At ease, Scarlet,” he ordered.
“Sir... are you injured?” inquired his communications officer.
“A little, yes. But I don’t think anything is broken,” he replied, calmly. His body was still bruised though. The communications officer nodded. “However,” he continued, “I will go to the infirmary just in case.” Strong Wing was an experienced stallion. He knew it was better to be safe than sorry.
The Captain began to make his way to the infirmary tent, followed by Scarlet. “Also, Captain...” she began to say, as they walked. “We have received new orders from Princess Celestia. I have the scroll right here,” she said, as the scroll levitated in front of the Captain in a scarlet-colored aura.
“I see. I will be sure to read it carefully after my check-up,” he responded, somehow grabbing it with one of his hooves. “Is that all, Scarlet?”
“Yes, sir,” she said.
“Alright. You are dismissed,” Strong Wing muttered. Scarlet promptly saluted before returning to her duties again.